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Cuba Private (overnight in hotel & homestay)

4 Days / 3 Nights


Havana Tours - Cuba Private (overnight in hotel & homestay) Havana Tours - Cuba Private (overnight in hotel & homestay) Havana Tours - Cuba Private (overnight in hotel & homestay)

Destinations: Havana, Trinidad, Santa Clara, Topes de Collantes, Cienfuegos City
Departure Time:
  • » Departure at 09.00am (from November 1, 2016 to October 31, 2017)
  •  Days Week:  Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday
Character: Private Program
Classifications:
  • » Cultural
  • » Nature
  • » History
  • » Colonial Cuba
  • » Private

Description

Book the beginning of your stay in Havana as you choose and after having explored the streets, squares, and terraces of the capital city, your journey to the mid-south of the country can begin.

Peaceful landscapes with friendly villages are interspersed within this tour, as well as visits to three top cities which are full of rich culture and history: Cienfuegos, Trinidad, and Santa Clara.

This 4 day tour will give you greater insight and different perspectives of Cuba beyond the exciting capital city or the beautiful blue of the many beach resorts.
Staying with a Cuban family in a Casa Particular (homestay) in Trinidad increases the socio-cultural level.

The city of Santa Clara - scheduled on the last day of the program - makes for a particularly convenient transfer location. Choose from 4 destinations where you want to be dropped-off. This can be the celebrated beaches of Varadero, Cayo Santa Maria or Cayo Coco or another spin around Havana.

Day 1: Havana - Cienfuegos

Havana Tours - Cuba Private (overnight in hotel & homestay)

Take your breakfast at ease, the guide will pick you up at 09.00am, before taking Cuba´s ‘Autopista’. It´s a broad motorway with relatively little traffic and runs nearly diagonally from Havana to the city of Cienfuegos, also known as the ´Pearl of the South´. The distance between the capital and Cienfuegos is approximately 243 km (151 miles).

Cienfuegos is an elegant, pleasant, and spacious city. It was founded in 1819 by French immigrants from Bordeaux and Louisiana, about three centuries later than the most Cuban colonial cities and with a neoclassical architecture with French accents. This explains the difference in architecture and appearance between, for example, Cienfuegos and Trinidad. Cienfuegos was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.

Lunch will be at the emblematic Palacio de Valle (built in Moorish style). The city tour includes further a visit to Parque José Martí flanked by government buildings, a cathedral, art gallery and the Teatro Tomás Terry.

Check-in for an overnight at one of Cienfuegos' city hotels (Jagua, Palacio Azul, La Union). Dinner at Club Cienfuegos.

(meals: lunch, dinner)


Destination(s): Havana, Cienfuegos City

Day 2: Cienfuegos - Trinidad

Havana Tours - Cuba Private (overnight in hotel & homestay)

Breakfast. On the road, eastwards to Trinidad. The distance between Cienfuegos and Trinidad is only 86 km (53 miles), along a lovely (partial coastal) road. Trinidad is like a bowl, comfortably clamped for many centuries between the Caribbean Sea and the mountain range Sierra del Escambray. It is a cliche, but it really seems as if time has stood still here centuries ago.
Winding streets let you climb and descend towards the Plaza Mayor, the City Museum, to the bar La Canchánchara, where a typical cocktail is served, afterwards lunch will be served.

In Trinidad you will stay in a Casa Particular, a Cuban family home. This type of private accommodation is called Casa Particular, and gives definitely a new dimension to your trip. This way you don´t only learn more about the country, but also about its people.

The evening is at leisure, dinner has not been included in favor of your privacy. Enjoy Trinidad by night with your partner, family or friends. Look for suggestions below under ¨What to do at Trinidad at night¨.

(meals: breakfast, lunch)


Destination(s): Trinidad

Day 3: Trinidad - Sierra del Escambray - Trinidad

Havana Tours - Cuba Private (overnight in hotel & homestay)

After breakfast, outdoors in the nature park Guanayara, situated at approximately 15 kilometers from Topes de Collantes and featuring various hiking trails. The trail, ‘Centinelas the Río Melodioso,’ is approximately 5000 meters long and takes about 3:30 hours. The River Melodios has a special shape with impressive cascades and ponds, and the area is home to a rich endemic flora and fauna. More adventurous and experienced hikers can cross the river to Poza del Venado, to swim in the natural pool.

After alternating climbing, but mostly descending, and after having bridged rivers and defying waterfalls, you walk straight to the backyard of La Casa de la Gallega, a former farm, now a country restaurant, surrounded by a beautiful garden. Long tables are set, on which homemade chicken will be served.

The hike is of average difficulty and is generally accessible by all ages, including small children and the elderly, provided that you have a normal physical condition. Participants who are unable to hike (e.g. due to medical problems), can settle with a book in the garden of the restaurant until the hikers return for lunch together.

In the afternoon onwards to the Valle de los Ingenios (Sugar Mill Valley), which was together with Trinidad declared World Heritage Site by UNESCO (1988). Visit the Manaca Iznaga tower, built in 1750 to control the slaves working on the sugar cane fields in those days, but today it is a most friendly setting.

Return to Trinidad, choose again where you would like to dine, to be followed by a visit to the Casa de la Trova.
A second overnight at the Casa Particular.

(meals: breakfast, lunch)


Destination(s): Trinidad, Topes de Collantes

Day 4: Trinidad - Santa Clara with drop-off options: Varadero, Cayo Santa María, Cayo Coco or Havana

Havana Tours - Cuba Private (overnight in hotel & homestay)

Breakfast, and heading northwards to Santa Clara. The distance between Trinidad and Santa Clara is approximately 121km (75M), mainly over rural roads through the countryside.

Santa Clara (founded in 1685) is inextricably linked to Ernesto Che Guevara; a prominent and charismatic personality of the world history. Visit the Ernesto Che Guevara Square, home of the museum and memorial dedicated to ´El Che´.A visit to the Tren Blindado (armored train) provides more insight into the revolutionary victories and how Santa Clara played an important role. Lunch will be served in Santa Clara.

Rest is sweet after the travel work has been done. Return to the lively capital city of Havana, or opt for a laid back stay in one of Cuba´s paradisaical beach resorts. Besides Havana, you can be dropped off at Varadero, Cayo Santa Maria or Cayo Coco.
(Hotel accommodation during the extension of Cuba Private and transfer to the airport of your departure are not included, neither reserved, but we are happy to assist).

(meals: breakfast, lunch)


Destination(s): Santa Clara

Versions

There are two different jeep/SUV categories:
• The BYD S6 (SUV) seats (apart from the driver/guide) four participants and stores their luggage (2 big + 1 small bag); ideal for a family with (two) children or four participants of average size.
• The BAIC BJ40 accommodates the driver/guide + three participants and their luggage. Up to three people can travel comfortably, as well as a family with (one) child.

Furthermore, four different options are created in order to choose where to end the Cuba Private. Three exotic, dazzling and blessed beach areas, with luxurious accommodation and superb lazing and lounging. Or move a bit more on Havana´s unique beat.
Select your drop-off point at one of the following destinations, during the booking process:
- Varadero
- Cayo Santa Maria
- Cayo Coco
- Havana

Included in price

• Transportation per air-conditioned jeep of SUV (4-seater or 5-seater jeep according to reservation).
• Program (and entrance fees) according to description.
• Professional, multilingual driver/guide.
• 3 Nights in a single or double room with private bathroom, in both a hotel and homestay.
• Described meals.

Not included in price

• Other consumptions.
• Other transfers and additional stays before and after the tour.
• Expenses of personal nature.
• Gratuities.

Remarks

• A professional driver, and your guide at the same time, will drive the jeep, jeeps are insured.
• It goes without saying that additional accommodation (before and after Cuba Private), as well as the return transfer to the airport of your departure, are not included, neither reserved, but we are happy to assist you if you want.
• Don’t forget to bring swimwear (and towel) for the hike on day 3. Sturdy footwear with grip (such as sneakers) is recommended, especially when one has to move over slippery river stones (pack a pair of dry shoes or flip-flops).
• Children are welcome on this tour, only child discount is not applicable, for which they have to be booked as adults. Children do count as an additional person sharing the jeep, resulting in a similar discount. Infants (0-2 years) travel free, but be aware that car seats or cots often are not available.
• Triple rooms are not bookable on this tour. In the case of an uneven number of participants, twin and single rooms should be booked.
• Some dinners are not included, neither are they charged. This way you’ll have more flexibility to choose where to dine. Regarding the nutrition of the guide, no worries, this is taken care of.
• Che Guevara´s memorial and museum in Santa Clara are closed on Mondays. Therefore, Cuba Private has no departure scheduled on Fridays, so that this closure will not affect one of the highlights of this program.
• The program can be subject to changes due to local conditions, including closure for repairs, weather, etc.

What to do in Trinidad at night?
Dining
• Private restaurant Sol Ananda, a beautiful building, located at the Plaza Mayor, furnished in colonial style. Extensive menu with Cuban-fusion dishes.
Address: Ruben Martinez Villena (Calle Real) # 45 Esquina Simon Bolivar (Calle Desengaño).
• Private restaurant San Jose, Cuban and Italian cuisine. Popular restaurant, reservation strongly advised.
Address: Maceo (Gutierrez) # 382 entre Colon y Smith.
• Private restaurant La Redacción, recently opened in a colonial building (once the redaction of a newspaper). Possibility to dine at the patio. International cuisine, specialty seafood.
Address: Maceo (Gutierrez) # 463 entre Simon Bolivar (Desengaño) y Fco. Javier Zerquera (Rosario).

Music, Drinks and Dancing
• La Escalinata is Trinidad´s nightlife center. Every evening (at about 08.00 – 08.30 pm) a salsa band will play live music at the old stone city steps (near the church). Dance or sit on the stairs or on one of the terraces, and simply watch. A small entrance fee can be levied, depending on the kind of event. Afterwards, follow the stairs which will lead you to the Casa de la Musica.
• Casa de la Trova (entrance aprox. CUC 1) hosts salsa bands and troubadours, located at only 100 meters from the city stairs. On your way you will pass the Palenque de los Congos Reales, with mainly Afro-Cuban music.

Cancellation Policy

• Cancellations made more than 10 days prior to the departure date of the program, will be charged with 25% of the paid sum.
• Cancellations made within 10 days before departure will be charged with a cancellation fee of 50% of the paid sum.
• In case of No Show (no presentation at pick up) there will be no refund.
*Remark: booking fees and credit card surcharges cannot be refunded in case of cancellation.

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