Begeleid: Portrait of an island

This varied journey provides a perfect overview of the entire island - not too long and not too short, with all relevant highlights and the perfect possibility to extend in the beach region Guardalavaca or Varadero at the end of the trip. Discover the island from west to east, get to know all the relevant cities and natural areas, relax at the beach in Santa Lucía to process the impressions. The nostalgic, vibrant Havana, the tobacco landscape of Pinar del Rio and culture, such as Santiago de Cuba, Trinidad - colonial world heritage site and the city of Jars Camagüey and the tropical Baracoa.

 

Day 1: Arrival Havana

Reception at the airport in Havana by a representative and transfer to the hotel. Dinner at own expense.

Included meals today: -
Included fees/ tours: Transfer
Total km today: 30 km
Total driving time today: 30 min

Day 2: Havana

Welcome and introduction of the guide. Afterwards visit to one of the well-known cigar factories (H. Upmann, La Corona, Romeo y Julieta or Partagas). Panoramic tour through the Havana of the 19th and early 20th century: along the Malecón, past the legendary Hotel Nacional de Cuba, drive down Avenida de los Presidentes to the Revolution Square with the portrait of Ché Guevara and the monument of José Martí. Continue to Capitolio, Gran Teatro de Habana, drive along the Prado and walk to Cathedral Square. Lunch in a restaurant. In the afternoon enjoy a walking tour through Havana’s old town - UNESCO World heritage site - with its most important sights such as: Plaza de Armas, El Templete, Palace of the Spanish Governors General, Cathedral square a.o. In the evening drive with classic cars to dinner in a private restaurant (Paladar) with special ambiance. Later in the evening, possibility to attend the world famous Tropicana show.

Important: Please note, cigar factories are closed in the afternoon and on weekends. In case the cigar factory cannot be visited in Havana, we will try to arrange another visit. During vacation (January/February) only the cigar shops at the factories can be visited.

If one of the museum is closed, another one e.g. Museum de Artes Coloniales will be visited. If the Palace of the Spanish Governors General is closed, it will be explained from the outside

Included meals today: breakfast, lunch and dinner
Included fees/ tours: Tobacco fabric, panoramic tour, important sightseeing, ride in classic car 
Total km today: -
Total driving time today: -

Day 3: Havana - Viñales Havana 

Drive on the Tobacco route to Pinar del Rio province. Visit of Casa del Veguero (house of a tobacco farmer). Enjoy the spectacular view from Los Jazmines viewpoint over Mogote valley with its limestone rocks. Lunch at „Palenque“ within splendid nature. Visit to Mural de la Prehistoria on a cliff and visit to the Indian cave including a short boat ride on an underground river and visit of the small, well-kept botanic garden of Caridad (privately owned). Return to Havana in the late afternoon.

Important: Please note that longer waiting time might occur at the Indian cave.

Included meals today: breakfast, lunch and dinner 
Included fees/ tours: visit of a tobacco farmer, panorama tour, Indian cave, visit of the Jardín de Caridad
Total km today: 420 km
Total driving time today: 4 h 30 min - 5 h

Day 4: Havana “On the traces of Hemingway” 

In the morning drive in a classic American car to San Francisco de Paula where the famous US- writer Ernest Hemingway used to live during his stays in Cuba. Visit the finca Vigia , which is today a museum. Return to Havana visiting the fortress El Morro and the Christ statue on the way. Back to the old-town to enjoy a cocktail in the famous „Bodeguita del Medio“, after that visit to hotel Ambos Mundos with Hemingway´s workroom 511, where he wrote the novel “For whom the bell tolls”. Lunch at the roof top on the hotel Ambos Mundos and Cocktail at Hemingways favorite bar “Floridita” – here he drank his Daiquirí and is immortalized as a bronze statue. Dinner at own expense.

Important: Please note, since the the finca Vigia is a museum it is only possible to look inside through the windows.

Included meals today: breakfast and lunch
Included fees/ tours: Classic car tour, visit of museum Ernest Hemingway, bay transfer, cocktail, visit of the “Floridita bar 
Total km today: -
Total driving time today: -

Day 5: Havana - Cienfuegos - Trinidad

In the morning drive in direction of central Cuba to Cienfuegos, an attractive harbor city characterized by French colonial architecture, located on the wide bay of Cienfuegos. Stroll over the main square Parque Martí with the nostalgic Terry theater. In continuation taste a Cocktail at the Moorish Palacio de Valle on Punta Gorda. Lunch at a paladar e.g. “Aché” whose loving decoration creates a special atmosphere. Leave for Trinidad – UNESCO world heritage site with unique colonial architecture - Trinidad is still detained in time keeping its soul and essence! Founded in 1514, this town had its peak during the sugar boom era in the 19th century. In the evening possibility to enjoy the romantic night-life by listening to traditional music and dancing with the locals or visit the “Casa de la Trova” or the “Casa de la Música” near the main square.

Included meals today: breakfast, lunch and dinner
Included fees/ tours: city tour, Terry theater, cocktail, journey through the night-life Trinidad
Total km today: 335 km
Total driving time today: 4 h - 4 h 30 min

Day 6: Trinidad 

In the morning city tour with the Plaza Mayor, surrounded by splendid mansions. Visit of the museum Municipal at the Palacio Cantero take a break at the rustic “Canchánchara” bar to taste the local honey liquor. In Continuation visit the hacienda Iznaga home of the former sugar barons Iznaga with its legendary slave tower. Lunch in the Restaurant e.g. “Casa Guachinanco“ near the tower. Rest of the day at leisure.

Important: Please note, if the museum Municipal at the Palacio Cantero is closed another one will be visited, e.g. the Romantic Museum.

Please note, that climbing the slaves tower is at own risk.

Included meals today: breakfast lunch and dinner
Included fees/ tours: city tour, city museum, honey liquor bar, Hacienda Iznaga and slave tower 
Total km today: -
Total driving time today: -

Day 7: Trinidad - Sancti Spiritus - Camagüey - Santa Lucía

In the morning drive through the Sierra Escambray to the colonial Sancti Spiritus, hardly touched by tourism, with its romantic Yayabo Bridge. Continue through the green sugar plantations to Camaguey – city of “Tinajones” (clay pots that provided a supply of cool water during droughts) and lunch at Paladar e.g. "1800”. City tour and visit the birthplace of Ignacio Agramonte ,, nowadays a museum. Originally cattlemen, Agramonte fought bravely against the Spaniards in the 19th century and is still one of the most famous hero in the region. Afterwards drive to Camagüey’s beach region to Santa Lucía.

Included meals today: breakfast, lunch and all-inclusive board hotel Santa Lucia 
Included fees/ tours: city tour, Yayabo bridge, visit of the birthplace Ignacio Agramonte
Total km today: 400 km
Total driving time today: 5 - 5 h 30 min

Important: Please note, if the museum of the birthplace of Ignacio Agramonte is closed another museum will be visited.

Day 8: Santa Lucía 

Santa Lucía’s 21 km long white sandy beach and the crystal clear turquoise water invite you to relax. Optimal for processing the first impressions of the past days. A few kilometers away from the coast is a breathtaking coral reef with sunken ships from the 19th century. Perfectly suited for a dive or snorkeling (optional).

Included meals today: all-inclusive 
Included fees/ tours: -
Total km today: -
Total driving time today: -

Day 9: Santa Lucía - Bayamo - El Cobre - Santiago 

In the Morning drive to Bayamo, where the fight for independence from the Spanish crown started and the national anthem “La Bayamesa” was composed. After strolling through the city, drive through Sierra Maestra to the pilgrimage site El Cobre. Visit of the impressing situated basilica with the patroness of Cuba. Late in the afternoon arrival in Santiago – city of the revolution and cradle of Cuban son.

Included meals today: breakfast and dinner
Included fees/ tours: city tour Bayamo, visit of the Basilica
Total km today: 310 km
Total driving time today: 4 h - 4 h 30 min

Day 10: Santiago 

Panorama drive past the revolution square, the historic Moncada barracks attacked by Fidel Castro and his men in 1953. Visit of the the cemetery Santa Ifigenia with graves of famous Cuban poet and National hero José Martí and members of the Bacardí family. Take the ferry for lunch on Cayo Granma located in the bay of Santiago. Visit fortress El Morro with its stunning sea views. After that, walk through the historic center with: Parque Céspedes, Casa Velazquez (the oldest house in Cuba), Calle Heredia and Plaza Dolores. In the evening enjoy life music at the popular Casa de la Trova or at Casa de los Abuelos.

Important: Please note, if the museum Casa Velasquez is closed another museum will be visited.

Included meals today: breakfast and lunch
Included fees/ tours: panoramic tour, ferry fare, fort “El Morro”, sightseeing 
Total km today: - 
Total driving time today: -

Day 11: Santiago - Guantánamo - Baracoa 

Morning drive towards Guantánamo - the stronghold of the Afro-Cuban Santería and Haitian Voodoo cult, also known by the nearby U.S. Navy base. Continue through a desert-like landscape with cactus´ on tropical green mountains, on the breathtaking pass road La Farola down to Baracoa, where Columbus once landed. In the late afternoon visit of the city museum Matachín and walk over the main square with the church of Nuestra Señora de Asunción and the Columbus cross.

Important: Please note, the church can be closed because of irregular opening hours.

Included meals today: breakfast and dinner
Included fees/ tours: round trip, visit of museum “Matachin”, stroll through main square
Total km today: 235 km
Total driving time today: 4 h - 4 h 30 min

Day 12: Baracoa 

Baracoa is located in a picturesque scenery in front of Table Mountain El Yunque, midst lush tropical landscape with coffee, cocoa and banana plantations – pure Caribbean. Excursion into the beautiful surroundings of Baracoa. Little introduction into the world of cocoa and drive to the Río Toa with a little boat excursion. Lunch on a rustic Finca. The rest of the day at leisure.

Included meals today: breakfast and lunch
Included fees/ tours: surrounding tour, boat excursion, visit of rustic Finca 
Total km today: - 
Total driving time today: -

Day 13: Baracoa - Holguín (Santiago) - Havana (Guardalavaca)

In the morning along the adventurous coast road with hidden bays in direction of Moa to Holguín. Flight to Havana or Transfer to Guardalavaca and end of the trip for those who stay in Holguín – Guardalavaca for a beach extension. Afterwards no other services are included for these guests, neither domestic flights. For those who fly back to Havana, the tour will end with a transfer to the separately booked hotel in the old part or a private transfer for guests who extend their holidays in Varadero (at a surcharge). Punctual connection to an international flight back to Europe or another country may cannot be guaranteed due to frequent schedule changes for the domestic flights. International flights are not recommended on the same day. For this reason, it is recommended to book an extra night.

Included meals today: breakfast
Included fees/ tours: Transfer 
Total km today: -
Total driving time today: -