Havana, Cuba - June 17 - 23, 2017
7 days & 6 nights
$1995 per person
$ single supplement
Program Price Includes
Coordination and confirmation of marine and land activities (make reservations for dockage, lodging, meals, transportation and entertainment)
Create a People to People itinerary - Assist owners and captains compiling documents for US Coast Guard application
Coordinate documentation for Cuban Customs and Immigration and send in advance to port of entry in Cuba
Private guide for land tours
Private transportation (12 hours per day)
Private happy hour at beautiful venue on Port of Havana
3 dinners (2 gala dinners)
Rum museum and Cigar Factory (subject to change)
1 private concert w/ major artist (farewell dinner/party)
Private cigar roller during farewell dinner/party
Tour management in Cuba by management personnel from US
Crew assistance and provisioning assistance in Cuba (transportation & tour costs for crew not included in price)
Program Price Does Not Include
US Coast Guard permit Fees (TBD)
Cuban Customs & Immigration
Cuban Cruising Permit
Dockage, water, electric - metered; paid to marina
Tips for marina and restaurant personnel
Tips for guides and drivers
Anything not listed in “what’s included”
Day 1 - Saturday, June 17 - Florida - Havana
Depart Key West by boat
Depart Key West for Marina Hemingway (XXX nautical miles)
Arrive Marina Hemingway - met by our management personnel and Cuba-based guide for orientation and information at the Hemingway International Yacht Club.
For the purposes of this proposal, we are assuming that arrival, check-in, orientation, etc. will take the better part of day one.
Dinner: Traditional Cuban “Pig Roast” and Welcome at Ernest Hemingway International Yacht Club
Hosted by Commodore Escrich of the Ernest Hemingway International Yacht Club, the group will enjoy a traditional Cuban feast, open bar of mojitos and Cuba libres and an unique opportunity to extend the hand of friendship to the bastion for the recovery of the traditions of recreational yachting in Cuba and the sanctuary for the lovers and protectors of the seas and oceans. The club has over 2800 members from 65 countries and is ready to welcome the Ocean Reef Yacht Club in the Cuban tradition of love and friendship.
You will enjoy salsa classes as part of your Welcom Party at the Hemingway International Yacht Club at Marina Hemingway.
Day 2 - Sunday, June 18 - Old Havana - History, Mystery and Magic
Walk the Four Plazas of Old Havana - a favorite pastime of the locals!
The Four Plazas or Old Havana offer a 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 de Asis and Plaza de la Catedral, giving you an insight to the truly magnificent and powerful place Cuba held in the Caribbean for centuries. The plazas are home to art galleries, restaurants, cafes, shops and a deeply rooted history and magic that is palpable among the centuries old buildings. You will interact with the many Cubans who live and work in La Habana Vieja and open their hearts and their lives to the American visitors that they welcome with their warm Cuban embrace.
Lunch in La Habana Vieja - Florida
The entire group will be served a magnificent lunch in a private courtyard of a historic colonial building in Old Havana. Set in the heart of Havana’s historic colonial district, you will enjoy Cuban cuisine in an exclusive setting that takes you back centuries to Cuba’s colonial era.
Continue enjoying the beautiful historic district of Old Havana - stroll, stop at a cafe, listen to the live music, shop at the craft market and more.
Return to Marina Hemingway
Dinner Aboard or on your own
The buses will depart from the dinner locations to go the the world-famous cabaret show at Tropicana, the Cabaret Under the Stars (doors open at 8:30 and the show starts at 10:00pm). We will collect the money of anyone who wants to go and go in advance to reserve and pay for the final number of people.
Day 3 - Monday, June 19 - El Prado and Modern Havana
When most people envision Havana, they see a Spanish Colonial city of cobblestone streets, baroque palaces and churches, large plazas and the vestiges of ancient fortresses with cannons and dungeons. What they don’t realize is that most of Havana was built during the 20th Century. Most surprising is that some of the best example of mid-20th century modern architecture in all of Latin America can be found in Havana; the most notable of these buildings remaining relatively unchanged from their initial construction. The Cuban modernist movement, active since the late 19th and early 20th centuries, reached its zenith in the 1940s and 1950s. In 1955, the Museum of Modern Art in New York featured the seminal exhibit and publication by Henry-Russel Hitchcock, Latin American Architecture Since 1945, introducing Cuba’s avant-garde modern architects. This driving tour will take you throughout Havana’s neighborhoods, showcasing the inordinate amount of modern architecture in contrast to the size of the city, both commercial and residential, opening your eyes to a Havana that is rarely seen in photos but of great historical and architectural significance. You’ll witness the surprising number of notable architects that practiced during these two decades in Cuba, and the modern, sophisticated and stylish city they built by the first half of the 20th century.
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 Jose 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. 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.
Lunch at El Aljibe
The nearly 69-year old secret chicken recipe developed in the 1940s has drawn the likes of Jack Nicholson, Matt Dillon and former President Jimmy Carter. El Aljibe is one of the busiest restaurants in Havana, especially during lunchtime and is run by Sergio Garcia Macias who, with his brother Pepe, opened their first restaurant in 1947. Named Rancho Luna, located in the countryside west of Havana, El Aljibe’s predecessor closed down in the early 1960s. When asked to help revive Rancho Luna in the 1990’s, Sergio agreed to open it under a new name, El Aljibe, and at a new location in the city’s busy Playa neighborhood. Here you will enjoy delicious Cuban creole cuisine in a country-like setting where you simply must have the world-famous chicken.
Free afternoon - Live like a Cuban
The rest of the afternoon is for you to hang out at Havana's most popular intersection. Your guide will drop you In the heart of Havana’s Vedado district at the intersection of L and 23rd st, also known as “La Rampa”, at the world-famous Coppelia Ice Cream Parlor. More a park than a parlor, Coppelia is a favorite hangout for Cubans of all ages and happens to serve delicious ice cream. Just across the street, you can catch a movie at the Yara, a prime example of the many mid 20th century modern movie theaters in Havana. When you’re ready to go back to the hotel, cross the street to the iconic Havana Libre Hotel and catch a taxi right outside the lobby doors. The busy, bustling intersection is a central hub for Havana social life.
You will be provided a list of recommended attractions and a map. Everyone will meet back at the Hotel Parque Central.
Return to Marina Hemingway & Hotel
Dinner Aboard or on your own
You will dine aboard or at a paladar of your choice from a list of the best restaurants in Havana. Our staff and your guide will help you with selection and making reservations. You can be adventurous and travel by taxi that our staff will also help you get and your return trip can be arranged by the establishment where you dine. The cost of this meal is not included in the price of the trip. We recommend reservations be made at least one day in advance.
Day 4 - Tuesday, June 20 - Day Trip to Pinar del Rio - Vinales Valley
Depart for Pinar del Rio and Vinales Valley
Pinar del Rio is Cuba’s westernmost province and is known for its breathtaking panoramas and unique natural landscapes. The vast and diverse attractions that can be enjoyed in Pinar del Rio range from exploring caves that are archeological sites covered in ancient indigenous drawings; prehistoric natural phenomena seen nowhere else on Earth such as the “mogotes”; lush and verdant landscapes of tobacco and sugarcane. Tropical flora and fauna are remarkably abundant; pristine coral reefs offer the best diving in the world and, once a year when the wind is just right, you get the best surf in Cuba. The natural beauty of Pinar del Rio is only surpassed by the old world charm of its towns and its people. Home to Cuba’s great farming legacy, where tobacco and sugar are king there remain the vestiges of a provincial elegance steeped in tradition. A day trip to UNESCO Heritage sight of Valle Vinales, 2.5 hours through Cuba’s exceptionally fertile and beautiful countryside, can be an unforgettable experience, but 2 more hours westward and you reach the peninsula of Cabo San Antonio, an UNESCO biosphere reserve whose nearest landmass is the Yucatan peninsula of Mexico.
Cueva del Indio
Just north of the village of Vinales, is an ancient indigenous dwelling that was rediscovered in 1920. Here, below the ground and traversed by an underground river, is a network of caves believed to have been used by the Guanahatabey Amerindians as a hiding place to take refuge from the Spaniards, as well as a burial site judging from the human remains that have been found here. You can explore the beginning of the tunnel’s jagged, damp interior by foot until where the stone steps lead to the underground river where a guided motor boat will actually steer you the rest of the way to the cave’s exit.
Lunch at Finca Paradiso Agroecological
Nestled into the Valley of Silence, located in Vinales, Cuba, is a true slice of paradise where the concept of “farm to table” cannot be more purely executed. Wilfredo is a local farmer who, along with his daughters, owns and operates the part organic farm, part family-run restaurants. Neat beds of organic crops, where a few years ago were only weeds, are planted against the breathtakingly dramatic backdrop of Vinales Valley. The panoramic views from this family farm and restaurant are unprecedented and the traditional, Cuban food served family-style on a wrap-around veranda is like none you have ever or will ever eat again.
Visit a Tobacco Plantation & Interact with Farmers
The best black tobacco in the world is cultivated from the soil of this rich and fertile land. When visiting Pinar del Rio province you will pass acre after acre of lush, verdant tobacco plantations. The soil in Pinar del Rio is the best soil with just the right conditions to grow and harvest the leaves to elaborate the best cigar in the world - the Habano. No trip to Cuba is complete without visiting a tobacco farm and seeing for your own eyes the majestically beautiful lands where tobacco grows and meet the farmers of this valuable crop. This is Cuba in all of its natural glory.
Return to Marina
[7:00 pm] - Dinner aboard or on your own
Day 5 - Wednesday, June 21
El Prado – Capitolio, Parque Central, Paseo - Architecture/City Tour 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. You will have a driving tour of this magnificent avenue on your way to the Finca Vigia, the Ernest Hemingway home and Museum
Museo de Bellas Artes
Very near El Prado, still in the heart of Havana’s urban center where La Habana Vieja meets Centro Habana, is a notoriously modern structure, housing the largest permanent collection of Cuban art in the world dating from the 16th Century to present. The collection boasts extensive works of the Cuban masters from the 1920s through the post-modernists of the 1980s who influenced a worldwide movement and hang in museums and private collections worldwide. The Palacio de Bellas Artes, curated to show exclusively Cuban works has its international counterpart in the Palacio del Centro Asturiano, devoted to universal art. You might have time for both, but you cannot miss the Cuban collection whose artists exemplify the profoundly multicultural, mysterious and rich history of Cuba and its people.
Lunch at Havana 61
Continue strolling, exploring and enjoying historic, bustling district
Happy Hour at Cervecería Antiguo Almacen de la Madera y el Tabaco
You will enjoy a private event with a live band and the magnificent view of Havana’s impressive port from the modern structure that is now a unique bar and beer factory. Located on the site of the original tobacco and rare wood warehouses on the docks, this venue is a window into the future of the Port of Havana and the remarkable vision at work to bring it to the 21st century.
Dinner at one of Havana’s Top PaladaresThe groups will be split among the best “Paladares” in Havana. Havana has a booming new culinary scene offering a quality selection of amazing food in settings that rival the hippest and most creative restaurants in any major metropolis in the world. You’ll enjoy phenomenal cuisine with old world standards of service in stylish and unique environments. Our long-standing relationships give us access and priority service at these venues. (For those who will go to Tropicana we will choose restaurants near Tropicana).
Day 6 - Thursday, June 22-
Finca Vigia - Ernest Hemingway’s Home and Museum
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 Hotel Parque Central - PradoLocated in Havana’s most culturally vibrant and densely-populated neighborhoods, right on the city’s “Central Park”, the Hotel Parque Central is comprised of a perfectly restored colonial tower and a modern tower connected by an underground tunnel. Both towers boast rooftop terraces with swimming pools, creating an oasis in the heart of Havana. You will enjoy a lovely lunch of international cuisine with your fellow travelers.
A visit to one of Havana’s historic cigar factories - meet the roller and sample the product…
A guided tour of one of the Cuba’s oldest cigar factories, 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.
Havana Club Rum Museum
Located in Old Havana on the Avenida del Puerto, the Havana Club Rum museum features the history of rum in Cuba and you can talk to the experts on the production of rum, enjoy the “tasting room” and pick up a bottle or two of Cuba’s most famous rum. This is a short tour and almost across the street from the next location.
Return to Marina Hemingway
Farewell Dinner and Private Concert at Club Habana
The group will enjoy a private concert by one of the members of the world-renowned Buena Vista Social Club at the legendary Club Habana after their farewell dinner of excellent international cuisine. This fabulously eclectic 1928 mansion in Miramar, nearly frozen in time, that once housed the Havana Biltmore Yacht & Country Club, is an exclusive club overlooking the Caribbean founded in 1928 as the Biltmore Yacht and Country Club. By 1958, the club boasted 4700 members, most of them from the USA. Today, it is a favorite for diplomats and foreign correspondents and offers all of the amenities of a luxury country club and also houses the newest Casa del Habano.
Day 7 - Friday, June 23- Departures
Depending on Departure Schedule
This is a great opportunity to have a free morning to stroll and explore your favorite areas, to visit the Arts & Crafts market for some last minute souvenirs or to sit on the malecon and reflect on the centuries of history, pirates, Spanish galleons and a bright future for recreational yachting in Cuba.
A DIVISION OF CUBA TOURS AND TRAVEL
Cuba Tours and Travel has over fifteen years of experience offering expert-driven cultural travel to Cuba. Our management and program-design team, working together with a team of superb Cuban travel associates in both Havana and Miami, are uniquely suited to offer you the finest in-depth travel program to the island. We are licensed by the US and Cuba and are fully insured. Most importantly, we have an abiding love for Cuban art and culture and have strong connections to the cultural institutions on the island.
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