Copy2 of Cuba is Calling
6 Night & 7 Days in Havana
Until recently, Cuba has been a vast and mysterious island just south of our borders, but one thing that has always been present is the vibrant music and dance culture that is distinctly Cuban. The imagery of drinking mojitos and dancing until the break of dawn in a hot Caribbean night with an amazing group of locals, is one shared by many.
Hasta Cuba has put together a unique experience bringing together local instructors and dancers to share some of their best salsa moves and explore their favorite venues. From a classic piano bar to a free form art collective that features local Dj’s and bands, this program will give you a chance to brush up on your skills and put them into action.
Accompanying the exciting nightlife, Cuban Rhythms features trips to the incredible city of Vinales and tours around the most happening neighborhoods in Havana.
In this week long journey you will experience:
Easy transportation starting with an airport shuttle, and local transportation to all of the week’s riveting activities. Enjoy the variety of transportation methods such as classic car’s or bici-taxis, as you cruise around the bustling city of Havana and the vibrant surrounding areas.
Comfort of a home as every guest gets set up with a private room at a casa particular in Havana Vieja, which is a Cuban homestay in the heart of historic Havana. You will share the house with a caring host who is readily available to help.
Authentic meals starting each morning with delicious breakfasts made at your casa particular and other meals featuring Cuban specialties such as “Ropa Vieja” , a slow cooked beef stew.
Experienced English speaking travel guides who will share their favorite sights and activities while providing insight into Cuban history & lifestyle.
Nights full of music at some of Havana’s best venues including an exceptional performance of The Buena Vista Social Club.
Exploration of the surrounding cities including a journey to the stunning city of Vinales in the heart of a lush landscape and a day at the beautiful beaches of Varadero
So you picked up the phone, called us, and in no time you find yourself in Jose Marti International Airport. Jose Marti is just a short drive away from the iconic city of Havana. One of our many incredible guides will be waiting for you with a sign and a smile. He will have the address to your home for the next few days at one of our favorite casa particulares (Private Homes) and make sure you get there safely. Throw your bags in the car, roll down the windows, and begin to take in the warm Cuban air. Our friendly guide will be happy to answer any questions that may come up, so feel free to ask!
You will be staying at one of our preselected casa particulares with its great location and caring host. Depending on your arrival time, you may have some time to explore the surrounding area before heading over to the welcome dinner. Dinner will be held at one of our favorite local paladar (traditional Cuban) restaurants.
This dinner will give you time to mingle with the other guests, drink your first (or second) mojito, and meet your wonderful trip leader. The leader has prepared a really special week and is eager to share the details with you. He will provide you with a map and physical copy of the itinerary.
After dinner, the night is yours! Perhaps you want to grab a daiquiri at La Floridita (Hemingway’s favorite bar) or get yourself some rest because the morning brings a delightful tour of Old Havana.
Every morning starts with breakfast prepared by your host and fresh Cuban coffee. After breakfast head out for a walking tour of Havana Vieja led by a Hasta Cuba guide. Every guide has had years of experience and is knowledgeable about the area. Havana Vieja has been the heart of Havana since the 16th Century and is known for its ancient buildings many of which have been renovated and boast brilliant colors. A large portion of this neighborhood is inhabited by local Cubans, everyday life will be buzzing all around as you navigate the busy streets. You may pop into local favorites like a farmer’s market, or a government owned pharmacy.
In order to get a better perspective of the city you will climb to the top of the early 20th-century Edificio Gómez Vila—the Plaza Vieja’s tallest building (35 meters/115 feet) and take a look at a Camera Obscura. This is a 360-degree real time view of Havana that is projected in a dark room. The Camera Obscura is based off of DaVinci’s original design and is the only one in Latin America.
After strolling the historic streets for a few hours’ lunch will be served at a traditional Cuban restaurant. Since importation is so limited, nearly all restaurants are “Farm-to-Table” and will feature seasonal specialties. No matter what dish you select rice and beans will most likely accompany it. The most popular form is when rice and beans are mixed together and are called “Moros y Christianos” (Christians & Moors).
With a better perspective of the city and a full belly, take the afternoon to explore on your own! Get lost while meandering the interwoven streets and checking out the countless unique shops and plazas. However, don’t get lost for too long because in the evening you are in for a treat.
On the other side of Havana’s Harbor, you will witness the Cannon Ceremony at the Fortress of San Carlos de la Cabana. The ceremony is in remembrance of a tradition from Cuba’s days as a Spanish Colony. The fortress is rich in Cuban history and has many rooms filled with photos depicting its history.
After a ride back to Havana Vieja you will have time to check out one of the trip leader’s favorite restaurants or bars, that Havana Vieja is full of.
Start the day off early with a quick breakfast and then head over to the leader’s house. You’ll then depart to Varadero, one of Cuba’s most famous Beach towns. Varadero is located on a thin cay that is less than a mile wide with turquoise water on both sides and beaches that span the whole extension of land.
People from all over the island flock to Varadero, known for its powdery white sand beaches, where they soak in the beautiful Caribbean sunshine. If sitting around the beach all day drinking out of fresh coconuts is not what you had in mind, you can enjoy some of the city’s mansions-turned-museums, or explore some of the island’s many caves.
After a long day in the sun, you will have a free night to explore the city. This is a great opportunity to enjoy a stroll along the Malecon, Havana’s gorgeous embarcadero, for sunset and dinner at your restaurant of choice. The leader will be happy to recommend one of their favorite places to eat or to indulge in any number of Havana’s lively night activities.
Let the engines warm up with a leisurely breakfast at the casa particular before heading over to meet the group for the experience you have all been waiting for. This morning you will take a ride around the town in one of the city’s myriad of classic cars.
With a visit to the vibrant neighborhoods of Vedado and Miramar, you will get to see a whole new side of Havana. We'll follow this up with a peek into Havana's urban forest before we head to El Mirador del Cristo de la Bahia and delight in one of the city's most spectacular vistas.
Eventually we'll head back into the heart of Havana to peruse the famous San Jose market. Located in Old Havana, you can wander the city's largest art market and enjoy an independent lunch. With so much to see, be prepared to stop at every booth. This is the best chance to pick up gifts of local art, crafts, and clothing at the lowest price.
Once nightfalls, grab that new hat or dress and get ready to dance as you head to participate in the Buena Vista Social Club show. This is a world famous act based on some of Cuba’s most influential musicians. Dinner and cocktails will be included!!
After a long night on the town, a nice hearty breakfast accompanied by freshly squeezed juice is in order. Take the morning to rejuvenate before making your way over to view the greatest collection of Cuban art at the Museum of Fine Arts. Stroll through time as the guide shows you magnificent pieces ranging from the colonial era to the finest contemporary works around.
The art and culture Tour continues as you hop on a bici-taxi and are whisked across town to check out Central Havana with a visit to Callejon de Hamel. With its funky street murals and psychedelic art shops, Callejon is known as the heart of the rumba.
No trip to Cuba would be complete without a tour of the Rum Museum. The guide will explain what makes Cuban rum so special and, if you are lucky, you might be able to try some of the delicious Havana Club 7-Year. You will have the rest of the afternoon to check off any of the remaining activities in Havana.
Later that evening you will get to explore the most happening place in all of Havana. La Fabrica de Arte Cubano is an absolute favorite for local Habaneros. Here you will be able to grab some drinks and find a multitude of art forms. You will view everything from photography to sculptures to fashion to architecture. This is a perfect chance to meet and interact with locals and enjoy late night eats. Live music will start at 10:30pm - this is one party in Havana that most tourists will never experience!
It’s hard to believe that this is your last full day in Cuba, but don’t worry, it is going to be jam packed! The van will be departing promptly at 8:00am to embark on one of the most scenic drives in all of Cuba.
Before entering Viñales you will stop at a stunning panoramic vista point with views of a lush green countryside littered with the iconic “Mogotes”. Stretch your legs here and snap some pictures before heading into the valley. Viñales has been recognized as one of Cuba’s UNESCO World Heritage sites, and for good reason, the sheer beauty of it will leave you in awe.
At the base of the valley you will be taken into a cave system. The system has high ceilings with stalactites and stalagmites protruding from above and below. The path will end and you will board a motorboat and travel a short distance along this underground river before exiting the cave.
After a long morning you will indulge in one of the most delicious and authentic meals of the week. The restaurant is located at the base of one of Viñales’ Mogotes, which sets a perfect backdrop to this tasty lunch.
The Viñales valley is the ideal environment for producing some of the world’s highest quality tobacco. Visit a plantation and witness the incredible art of creating a Cuban cigar (Cubano) from seed-to-smoke.
The drive to Havana will give you an opportunity to reminisce on the week past and admire the beautiful landscape as you wind around the steep mountainsides.
Dinner will take place this evening as a final outing for your group. Enjoy this meal and share stories of the adventures of the past week. Drink some of your last mojitos and smoke one of the freshly hand rolled Habanos from the valley.
The timing on this day will vary by guest, but breakfast will be provided at your casa particular.
Your trip leader will make sure the transportation is set to get you to the airport 3 hours before your flight.
If this program leaves you wanting more. Feel free to ask about different options for extending the trip including housing and activities!
Individual - $1650 - Per Person
Services that are included in this trip
Daily homemade breakfasts
Variety of lunches (3)
Family style dinners (4)
Private tour guide, dance instructor, and program leader
2 nightlife activities (Buena Vista Social Club & Cuban Art Factory)
Entrance free to museums & historical sites
Classic car tour & bike tour
All transportation to and from Airport, along with trips to surrounding cities of Varadero & Viñales
What is not included
After you make your reservation with us, we will give you detailed instructions in the preparations required for the trip, (e.g. how to obtain a visa, etc.)