Havana-Cienfuegos-Trinidad 7 Nights

Havana-Cienfuegos-Trinidad 7 Nights

8 Days Tour

Day 1 - HAVANA CITY

ARRIVAL DAY

HAVANA CITY MEET & GREET AT Havana International Airport

The designated tour guide will be waiting for you at the airport to welcome you, pick you up, and take you to the hotel or private place where you will be staying.

WELCOME TO THE HOTEL OR ‘BNB’ PLACE.

After checking in, the Tour guide will go over the Itinerary and answer any questions you may have about it.

DINNER AT A SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

HAVANA CITY HAVANA CITY

Day 2 - HAVANA CITY

BREAKFAST

You will be met by your guide after breakfast to begin the day’s program.

THE FOUR PLAZAS OF OLD HAVANA - A FAVORITE PASTIME OF THE LOCALS!

The morning begins with a walking tour of the Four Plazas; a magical journey through five centuries of history and architecture that culminate to comprise Cuba’s first of many UNESCO World Heritage Sites  “La Habana Vieja” or Old Havana. The tour takes you on a stroll through the four main plazas, Plaza de Armas, Plaza Vieja, Plaza de San Francisco deAsis and Plaza de la Catedral, giving you an insight to the truly magnificent and powerful place Cuba held in the Caribbean for centuries. You’ll see colonial fortresses and opulent palaces highlighting the majestic architecture spanning from Spanish Colonial to Neoclassical interspersed with a mix of Baroque. Old Havana is packed with churches, cathedrals and monuments, as well as a homogeneous ensemble of private houses with arcades, balconies, wrought iron gates and internal courtyards -- many evocatively time worn, but many restored to their original majesty.  The plazas host outdoor cafes, bars and restaurants where live music is always playing, as well as art galleries and quaint shops that can range from touristic items to handcrafted gourmet chocolates and exotic spices. You will want to return to explore La Habana Vieja on our own to explore and discover its magic and mystery for yourself.

LUNCH AT SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

ARTIST STUDIO & GALLERY VISITS

Rising from the restoration and revitalization of Old Havana, impressive art galleries have sprung up all over the colonial center of the city, exhibiting the work of Cuba’s top artists and often housing their private studios. As you stroll through Old Havana you will happen by many galleries and studios where you can view and purchase original art and support the local artists.

CALLEJÓN DE LOS PELUQUEROS COMMUNITY PROJECT

The Hairdressers' Alley has become an attractive proposal in just a few years. In this street, as its name indicates you can find barbershop and hairdresser, but you also services of Art, crafts and gastronomy. Nestled in the most historic part of Havana, near Avenida del Puerto is a sample of fusion between different knowledges among which highlight culture and history combined with a new look.

SALSA CLASSES

Learn all about the many traditional and modern Cuban dances such as the Cuban Salsa, Rumba, Son, Mambo, etc. Participate in a custom class based on your individual needs, considering your knowledge, capabilities and wishes.

DINNER AT SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

FABRICA DE ARTE CUBANO

Fabrica De Arte is probably Havana’s most exciting art and performance venue. FAC an old oil factory that’s now a thriving arts space in Vedado, one of Havana’s residential districts. The eclectic crowd includes the who’s who of the art and music world mixing it up with young people from all over the city who attend regularly to experience art and music. The cavernous space includes an art and photographic gallery, a dance space, a cinema and a very well-stocked bar. On any given night you can watch a fashion show and a live concert, enjoy a meal, see a film and generally hang out in the most creative scene on the island. It was Mick Jagger’s favorite hangout in Havana and it will probably be yours.

HAVANA CITY HAVANA CITY

Day 3 - HAVANA CITY-CIENFUEGOS-TRINIDAD

BREAKFAST

You will be met by your guide after breakfast to begin the day’s program.

TRANSFER TO CIENFUEGOS CITY

CITY TOUR OF THE HISTORIC CENTER

The area where the city lies was identified as Cacicazgo de Jagua by early Spanish conquistadors. It was originally settled by Taino indigenous people. The city was later settled by French immigrants from Bordeaux and Louisiana led by Don Louis de Clouet on April 22, 1819. The settlers named the city Fernandina de Jagua in honor of King Ferdinand VII of Spain and Chief Jagua. The settlement successively became a town (villa) in 1829, renamed for José Cienfuegos, Captain General of Cuba (1816–19), and a city in 1880. Many of the streets in old town reflect French origins in their names: Bouyón, D'Clouet, Hourruitiner, Gacel, and Griffo, for instance.
Cienfuegos port grew to be a powerful town due to the fertile fields surrounding it and its position on the trade route between Jamaica and South American cities to the southeast and the hinterland provincial capital of Santa Clara to the northeast. Its advantageous trading location on the historically eponymous Bay of Jagua was used by the Cuban sugar oligarchy when a railroad was built between both cities between 1853 and 1860.

THOMAS TERRY THEATER

It was built between 1887 and 1889 to honor Tomas Terry (Venezuelan industrialist).
Tomas Terry Theatre in Cienfuegos. National Monument, located in the historic urban center, opposite the Parque Martí, corner of Avenue 56 and Calle 27, their type corresponds to the Coliseum at the Italian way, which is set in a horseshoe-shaped hall, where the public stands on four levels, but always in relation to front the show offered on stage.It is one of the finest eclectic buildings of the city of Cienfuegos. Forming with Theater Sauto in Matanzas, and La Caridad in Santa Clara trilogy of nineteenth-century theater builder in Cuba.

LUNCH AT SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

VISIT TO TOMAS ACEA CEMETERY

The Tomás Acea Cemetery is the unique cemetery-garden in Cuba built on the outskirts of the city of Cienfuegos. Declared a National Monument on October 10, 1978, by its artistic values, architectural, historical and environmental factors.
It Opened on November 21 and despite having been built for the poor, there are all a waste of monumental sculptures made of Carrara marble, high quality, brought from Italy.
The design and execution of the work were done by engineers Paul Donato Luis Carbonell and Philip Ross, who was inspired by the most modern ideas of the time on the construction of cemeteries, which resulted in a beautiful garden cemetery where vaults, mausoleums and tombs are integrated harmoniously into the landscape.

TRANSFER TO TRINIDAD

CHECK IN AT THE HOTEL OR BNB PLACE

DINNER AT SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

HAVANA CITY-CIENFUEGOS-TRINIDAD  HAVANA CITY-CIENFUEGOS-TRINIDAD

Day 4 - TRINIDAD

BREAKFAST

You will be met by your guide after breakfast to begin the day’s program

TRINIDAD CITY TOUR

Trinidad is a town in the province of Sancti Spíritus, central Cuba. Together with the nearby Valle de los Ingenios, it has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1988. The city  was founded on December 23, 1514 by Diego Velázquez de Cuéllar under the name Villa de la Santísima Trinidad. Trinidad is one of the best-preserved cities in the Caribbean from the time when the sugar trade was the main industry in the region.        The city is  known for its colonial old town and cobblestone streets. Its neo-baroque main square, Plaza Mayor, is surrounded by grand colonial buildings. Museo Romántico, in the restored Palacio Brunet mansion, and Museo de Arquitectura Colonial display relics from the town’s sugar-producing era. Iglesia de la Santísima is a 19th-century cathedral with a vaulted ceiling and carved altars.

LUNCH AT SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

THE CRAFT MARKET

This craft market offers an impressive diversity of goods and artwork crafted by local artists and artisans in Cuba. Traditional artisanry is a relatively new tradition in Cuba, stemming from economic need combined with an extraordinarily talented natural human resource. A visit to the market offers the visitor the opportunity to have meaningful interaction with the artisans from all over the island who bring their handmade crafts, from traditional souvenirs, original paintings, an impressive array of fashion, leather goods and accessories, all designed and handmade by local talent.

VALLE DE LOS INGENIOS OR VALLEY OF THE SUGAR MILLS

Valle de los Ingenios, also named Valley de los Ingenios or Valley of the Sugar Mills, is a series of three interconnected valleys about 12 kilometres (7.5 mi) outside of Trinidad, Cuba. The three valleys, San Luis, Santa Rosa, and Meyer, were a centre for sugar production from the late 18th century until the late 19th century.
At the peak of the industry inCuba there were over fifty sugar cane mills in operation in the three valleys, with over 30,000 slaves working in the mills and on the sugar cane plantations that surrounded them. The entire area covers 270 km2 (100 sq mi) and includes the sites of over 70 former sugar mills. In 1988, Valle de los Ingenios and neighbouring Trinidad have declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO

IZNAGA TOWER

The 45 metre (147 ft) tower was constructed sometime in 1816 by the owner, Alejo Maria Iznaga y Borrell. According to experts, the bell that formerly hung on top of the tower announced the beginning and the end of the workday for the slaves, as well as the times for prayers to the Holy Virgin in the morning, midday, and afternoon. It was also used to sound an alarm in case of fire or slave escape. The height and magnificence of the tower served to display Iznaga power over his slaves and his stature in the sugar industry and local society; at one time it was the tallest structure in Cuba. A recognised landmark of the region, the Iznaga Tower testifies to the area's flourishing material culture in the Spanish colonial period. The large bell now rests at the foot of the tower.

RETURN TO TRINIDAD
DINNER AT SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

TRINIDAD TRINIDAD

Day 5 - TRINIDAD-HABANA

BREAKFAST

You will be met by your guide after breakfast to begin the day’s program.

TRANSFER TRINIDAD -HABANA

CHECK IN AT THE HOTEL OR BNB PLACE

LUNCH AT SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

CIGAR FACTORY PARTAGAS OR SIMILAR

You will learn about the past and present of one of the Cuban cigar factory., founded in 1845 by

“Don” Jaime Partagas y Ravell, will give you a first-hand look at the manufacturing of the Habano. You will also have the opportunity to meet and speak with the master rollers that have inherited and will pass down the fine art of rolling the best cigars in the world. Located in the historic colonial district of La Habana Vieja, the factory also has a VIP lounge and a store, offering the US connoisseur the rare opportunity to purchase and smoke a Cuban cigar at the source made by the master rollers at Partagas.

El Prado – Capitolio, Parque Central, Paseo and more…
El Prado is one of the most exquisitely designed and splendid major avenues in all of the Americas and home to the quintessential structures that define Havana, ranging from Colonial to

Baroque to Neoclassical to Art Deco. Designed in 1772 by French landscape architect Jean-Claude Nicolas Forestier, El Prado runs for many blocks from the dramatic fountain, La Fuente de la India, to the iconic Malecon, marking the boundary between Habana Vieja and Centro Habana. El Paseo, a marble promenade lined with a natural canopy of trees, marble benchesand bronze lions was recently chosen by the House of Chanel for one of the most dramatic runway shows in the history of fashion. It is home to El Capitolio (1929): El Gran Teatro de La Habana (1918), home to the National Ballet of Cuba; The Bacardi Building (1930), a testament to Art Deco and dozens of other structures immortalized in photography and film for decades. Havana’s Central Park, is home to first statue of Jose Marti in Cuba. The gardens stand out for the 28 magnificent royal palms. Some of Havana most recognizable buildings surround the park. El Prado encompasses all of the mystery and magic, all of the historic and cultural wealth that Havana has offered from the 17th to the 21st century.

Bacardi Building

The Bacardi Building (Edificio Bacardi) is an Art Deco building in Havana, Cuba. The building was designed by architects Rafael Fernández Ruenes, Esteban Rodríguez Castell and José Menéndez, for the Bacardi rum company.

Rum Museum

Situated in the historic district of Habana Vieja ("old Havana"), the museum is housed in a renovated 18th-century "solar" (colonial townhouse). Downstairs is a shady patio, with its broad stone columns and ferns, yuccas and potted palms. A visit to the Havana Club Museum of Rum isn't merely a journey back to the origins of Cuba's most famous beverage, the museum offers a real-time experience of the rum-making process, as well as a taste of true Cuban culture.

DINNER AT SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

TRINIDAD-HABANA TRINIDAD-HABANA

Day 6 - HAVANA CITY

BREAKFAST

You will be met by your guide after breakfast to begin the day’s program.

REVOLUTION SQUARE (PLAZA DE LA REVOLUCION)

One of the most dramatic examples of modern architecture in Havana, if not the world, is the Plaza de la Revolución José Martí. The Plaza is among the largest civic plazas in the world, measuring nearly 24,000 sq. ft., surrounded by modern construction and featuring the enormous obelisk monument to Jose Marti, built on the highest ground in Havana. It is major attraction for visitors of all walks of life, world leaders and dignitaries, including Pope Francis who held mass there recently and Pope John Paul II who visited in 1998. The plaza was constructed prior to 1959 during the government of Fulgencio Batista but gained popularity afterward as the center of public celebration and demonstration in Cuba. Two of the government buildings in the square, both mid-century modern (1958), are best known for the iron sculptures of Che Guevara and Camilo Cienfuegos that cover their facades, both by Cuban artist Enrique Avila. This grand plaza is also home to the Teatro Nacional de Cuba, built in 1979. This plaza is another one of those magical locations in Havana that throw you back in time but simultaneously offer you a great vision and hope for the future.

CALLEJON DE HAMEL COMMUNITY PROJECT

Callejon de Hamel is a unique tourist attraction in Havana Centro, the venue is known for its Afro Cuban art and Santeria rituals with rumba dance sessions.
The narrow two-block long alley between Aramburu and Hospital streets in Centro Habana has over the years become a shrine to Afro-Cuban religions through the art created by Salvador González. The buildings are lined with brightly-colored paintings, murals, sculptures and objects, which depict rituals and deities. Also, rumba groups play here every Sunday.

PEOPLE TO PEOPLE EXPERIENCE - SHOP LIKE A CUBAN

Cuba is known for its fertile lands, diversity of ecosystems and its agricultural productivity.  The local farmer's markets are strategically located throughout the towns and cities are the source of this spectacular selection of products for the Cuban population.  Daily, folks purchase their fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs and other produce at the local market in local currency.  Your guide will escort you to one of the best of these markets in the heart of the Vedado district on 19th St. and B.  Pick up some fresh fruit for your room or just feast your eyes on the tropical delights that grow on this island paradise.

LUNCH AT SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

COPPELIA ICE CREAM PARLOR (FOR DESSERT)

Havana's Coppelia is a Cuban Revolution modernist building from 1966. Features five white granite discs annexed to one great helicoidal staircase, with wood and tinted glass division panels, all inside one big round roof supported by twelve reinforced concrete arachnid columns. The flying-saucer-shaped building that represents a UFO that has landed in Havana and is one of the largest ice cream parlors in the world. Holding 1000 guests, it is located on the part of Calle 23 known as La Rampa in the Vedado district, and occupies the entire city block between Calles 23 and 21, and Calles K and L. Coppelia has been a major city landmark for both locals and visitors since its opening in 1966, but acquired additional fame when it was featured in one of the most widely viewed Cuban films, Strawberry and Chocolate

VISIT TO FIDEL CASTRO SUITE AT HAVANA LIBRE HOTEL

Havana Hilton (now the Hotel Habana Libre), designed by Los Angeles architect Welton Becket. Opened in March 1958, it was Latin America’s tallest and largest hotel, financed by the pension fund of the union of Cuban restaurant workers but operated by Hilton Hotels. On January 8, 1959, Fidel Castro arrived at Havana and the hotel served as his headquarters, even as it continued operating as a Hilton (until October 1960, when all American hotels in Cuba were nationalized). In 1996 the Spanish Sol Melià chain assumed management of the hotel and restored the enormous original mural by artist Amelia Peláez over the main entrance which had spent decades hidden from public view.

FUSTERLANDIA COMMUNITY PROJECT

Fuster - Artist Studio Visit & Jaimanitas Fishing Village
An intimate discussion with Fuster, the fishermen from Jaimanitas and townspeople offers an opportunity for a meaningful encounter with Cubans off the beaten path of the bustling city and an insight to a tightly knit and thriving community. Fuster has made a major contribution over 10 years of work of rebuilding and decorating the fishing town of Jaimanitas in the outskirts of Havana, where he lives. Jaimanitas is now a unique work of public art where Fuster has decorated over 80 houses with ornate murals and domes to suit the personality of his neighbours, he has built a chess park with giant boards and tables, The Artists’ Wall composed of a quilt of dozens of tiles signed and donated by other Cuban artists, a theatre and public swimming pools.

EXPLORE THE MALECON LIKE A CUBAN

If you would rather walk off the calories from your delicious lunch, your guide can drop you on Havana’s Malecon, the seaside avenue that borders the Caribbean Seas through Centro Havana and Vedado.  A quintessential seawall is a gathering place for Cubans from all walks of life. Strolling the Malecon as the waves break on the rocks below, you might hang out on the seawall with friends and enjoy a cigar or a sip of rum, run into musicians playing to the rhythm of the city and tides, pass a couple in love or a whole bunch of local kids swimming in the pools created waves on the rocks.  The Malecon is the city’s artery and the heart of social interaction in Havana and there, you are truly living a Cuban experience like a real “Habanero”.

DINNER AT SUGGESTED RESTAURANT

TROPICANA NIGHTCLUB

Founded in 1939, the Tropicana was once the most famous nightclub in the world, featuring the musical extravaganzas of choreographer Rodney and the talents of Celia Cruz, Nat King Cole, Carmen Miranda, and a host of other international performers. The nightclub continues to be the most visited music and dance revue in Cuba and its buildings are considered the finest examples of International-style modernism in the Caribbean.

HAVANA CITY HAVANA CITY

Day 7 - HABANA HEMINGWAY DAY

BREAKFAST

You will be met by your guide in the lobby after breakfast to begin the day’s program.

FERRY RIDE ACROSS HAVANA BAY TO CASA BLANCA

When driving or strolling along Havana’s “ Malecon”, the coastal avenue that hugs the city of Havana along its majestic port and iconic sea, you have a constant view of the iconic lighthouse that stands proudly atop a cliff guarding Havana’s spectacular natural harbor. The towns of Casa Blanca sits at the end of the promontory, across the harbor from La Habana Vieja and home to the famous statue of Christ, the Blanco Cristo.  From the ferry landing on the port side of Old Havana, you will board the ferry and enjoy the views for the 10-minute crossing to Casablanca or Regla. Most locals who live and/or work in portside towns travel across the harbor on a pedestrian ferry boat which crosses to the landings in Regla and Casablanca all day long at 10-minute intervals.

FINCA VIGIA - ERNEST HEMINGWAY'S HOME & MUSEUM

Your transportation will await you at Casa Blanca for the short drive to Ernest Hemingway’s home in the rural village of San Francisco de Paula, also just east of Havana. Named Finca Vigia or “Lookout Farm”, the home was built in 1866 and purchased by Hemingway in 1940.  This property, emerging from a lush tropical flora and fauna, was his primary home from 1940 until his death in 1961.  Hemingway loved Cuba and according to close sources, he spent more time there during those two decades that any of his homes around the world.  Here, Hemingway wrote his Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, “The Old Man and the Sea”, and his famous fishing boat, El Pilar, is also on display here.  In 1962, Finca Vigia was turned into a museum making it the first institution in the world devoted to Ernest Hemingway and his work. Recently, the feature film, “Papa” was filmed on location in Cuba and much of it at Finca Vigia.

LUNCH AT A SUGGESTED RESTAURANT
EL MORRO CASTLE AND LIGHTHOUSE

Built on the high rock entrance to the Bay and completed in the early 1600s, El Morro Castle guards the Port of Havana, complete with dungeons, cannons and the iconic lighthouse.  Known as “El Morro”, the castle is actually The Castle of the Three Kings, named for the biblical Magi. The lighthouse stands on the end of a promontory strongly fortified with huge walls and battlements built by the Spanish Conquistadors to defend the city against pirates and bounty seekers.  You will make a brief stop here for photo opportunities of the colonial fort and the magnificent panoramic views of Havana.

ARTS & CRAFTS MARKET - ALMACENES SAN JOSE IN OLD HAVANA

Your last free morning in Havana is a perfect opportunity to catch a taxi at the hotel for one last visit to Habana Vieja and a quick shopping trip for that last minute gift or souvenir.  Almacenes San Jose, the vast craft market right on the docks at the Port of Havana, offers an impressive diversity of goods and artwork crafted by artists and artisans in Cuba.  You can walk up and down the aisles between stands, while the vendors play their maracas and claves in the morning breeze coming off the bay, and find everything from traditional souvenirs, original paintings, an impressive array of fashion, leather goods and accessories, all designed and handmade by local talent.  Your last stroll through the picturesque, narrow streets of Old Havana and farewell ride up the Malecon will leave the indelible mark on your memory that Havana inevitably leaves on all who have made her acquaintance and dream of returning to explore the rest of this island paradise.

DRINKS AT EL FLORIDITA

Ernest Hemingway was known to say, “My mojito at La Bodeguita; my daiquiri at Floridita”, the world-famous bar and one of Papa’s favorites where it is rumored he invented the “daiquiri” with his regular bartender.  The venue opened in 1817 under the name “La Pina de Plata” or The Silver Pineapple in English, and almost 100 years later the name was changed to “El Florida”, but in time became known as “El Floridita”.  One the famed Old Havana corner of Obispo and Monserrate, the bar was not only frequented by Hemingway, but was a regular haunt for generations of Cuban and foreign intellectuals and artists including Ezra Pound, John Dos Passos and British novelist, Graham Greene.  The Bar, complete with the bronze bust of Hemingway (2003), still preserves much of the atmosphere of the 1940s and 1950s and no trip to Havana would be complete with a visit to this iconic location.

CLASSIC CARS RIDE

Enjoy an amazing driven tour of Miramar’s Quinta Avenida and Havana’s “Malecon” in beautifully restored vintage 1950s convertibles.  Spending an hour with the owner/operators of these classic cars promotes the Cuban people’s independence from Cuban authorities and offers the US traveler the chance to learn about and support the entrepreneurial efforts. This drive is a retrospective, nostalgic journey through time and you can feel you’ re in the 1950s with the backdrop of the Cuban skyline, nearly frozen in time.

FAREWELL DINNER AT A SUGGESTED RESTAURANT
LA ZORRA Y EL CUERV

The nightclub (The Fox and the Crow) is located on La Rampa (23th street) between N and O street close to the Habana Libre hotel. This famous jazz club is considered as one of the best in town. You can't miss the location on La Rampa, the entrance is a replica of a red English telephone box and lead you to the basement where the club with a capacity of 120 people is situated.
The venue is popular among Cubans and tourists, many renowned names like ROBERTO FONSECA and CHUCHO VALDES have given performances in the jazz club.

HABANA HEMINGWAY DAY    HABANA HEMINGWAY DAY

Day 8 - DEPARTURE DAY

BREAKFAST

You will be met by your guide in the lobby after breakfast to begin the day’s program.

CHECK OUT OF HOTEL OR BNB PLACE

You’ll be met by your guide and transportation for your airport transfer from the hotel to Jose Marti International Airport.  Your guide will remain with you at the airport, assisting with check-in and to see you off, ensuring a smooth departure.

DEPART HAVANA FOR YOUR COUNTRY

Cuba and her people bid you Adios! Hasta laproxima!

DEPARTURE DAY DEPARTURE DAY

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