The Ohio State University Alumni Association

Cuba - People, Culture & Art

Feb. 4 – Feb. 12, 2018

Details

Discover Cuba’s highlights, architecture, music and culture for eight nights during stays in Miami, Havana and Cienfuegos.

Cuba is a trove of storied heritage, revolutionary history and vibrant culture. This eight-night People-to-People educational exchange, licensed by the U.S. Treasury Department, abounds with authentic, enriching experiences. Immerse yourself in this fascinating nation during presentations by local experts coupled with visits to historic sites, museums, schools and community projects. Discover Havana’s highlights and antiquated charms. Visit Hemingway’s home, cruise Habana Vieja in a vintage convertible and meet local artists and dancers. Admire artistic talent at the National Museum of Fine Arts, and encounter Cuba’s most famous export during a cigar factory tour. See a slower side of Cuba as you journey through the Pinar del Río region; enjoy the history and hospitality of Trinidad; and watch a musical performance in Cienfuegos. Along the way, revel in Cuba’s captivating blend of music, cuisine and art. This small-group experience includes round-trip flights between Miami and Cuba, all excursions and talks, first-class accommodations and an extensive meal plan.

Tour highlights and included features

  • A uniquely designed itinerary provides opportunities to experience the Cuban culture, history and people in four destinations: Havana; Cienfuegos; Trinidad; and Pinar del Río
  • One night in Miami, Fl, at the first-class Crowne Plaza Miami International Airport
  • Five nights in Havana, Cuba, at the first-class Hotel Mercure Sevilla
  • Two nights in Cienfuegos at the first-class Hotel Jagua
  • Round-trip flights between Miami and Cuba and all deluxe motor coach transfers in the Land Program and baggage handling
  • Seven breakfasts, six lunches and six dinners, including Welcome and Farewell Dinners; tea or coffee with all meals, plus a local beverage with dinner
  • Sample authentic regional specialties during meals at local restaurants
  • Discovery excursions highlight the local culture, heritage and history
  • Expert-led Enrichment programs enhance your insight into the region
  • Clearly hear your English-speaking guide with your VOX headset
  • Tipping of guides and drivers
  • Complimentary travel mementos
  • Discover Cuba’s world-renowned cigar industry and the art of hand rolling cigars during a factory tour
  • Meet members of Cuba’s arts community during visits with artists, dancers and musician

Dates Feb. 4 – Feb. 12, 2018

Cost $5,695* (Airfare is included from Miami. All prices are per person, based on double occupancy, and early booking deadlines. Dates, itineraries, and prices are subject to change.)

Type Land

Region North America

Activity level

Host

Operator

Contact Laura DeRose
derose.25@osu.edu
614-292-2372 or
800-852-TOUR (8687), ext. 2

Map

Experiences

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Itinerary

Depart for Miami, Florida.

Upon arrival, take the complimentary hotel shuttle to the Crowne Plaza Miami International Airport.

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Depart for Havana, Cuba. Check into the Hotel Mercure Seville.

Take an orientation walk along Paseo del Prado, stroll to the seaside Malecón and visit Parque Central.

Tonight, join fellow travelers for a Welcome Dinner at one of Cuba’s oldest paladares.



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Enjoy your first taste of this unique UNESCO World Heritage site. Take in views of Plaza de Armas, the city’s oldest square, and see the Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, residence of the colonial Spanish governors. Admire the 19th-century Fountain of Lions, see Plaza Vieja and discover Havana’s busiest shopping street, Calle Obispo. This pedestrian-only thoroughfare has state-run shops, restaurants and cuentapropistas. Meet these entrepreneurs, who have turned open spaces into showrooms for their wares.

Enrichment: Urban Planning & the Architectural Challenges. Meet a Cuban architect to discuss contemporary city planning. Lunch on Cuban fare at El Templete.

Discovery: Revolutionary & Cultural Cuba. Linger in the Museo de la Revolución while browsing fascinating exhibits, including the Bay of Pigs. Then share experiences with the staff and children at a cultural center for youth. Enjoy dinner at a paladar. During a period of reform in the 1990s, many Cubans were allowed to open their own restaurants. Each paladar offers a unique setting and menu.

Discovery: Convertibles & Dance. Havana’s streets are filled with classic American convertibles. These 1950s beauties, imported before the U.S. trade embargo began in 1960, still run due to the ingenuity of their owners. Climb aboard and enjoy a drive through Havana’s historic quarter. At a contemporary dance studio, talk with talented dancers and watch a rehearsal. Pause for lunch at a local paladar.

Discovery: Higher Education. Tour the University of Havana, Cuba’s oldest university. See the campus, and discuss opportunities for higher education with a school representative.

Enrichment: U.S. & Cuban Relations. Join a professor for an enlightening discussion about the relationship between the U.S. and Cuba.


Discovery: Cuban Cigars & Art. The liaison of Cuba and cigars became known to the world soon after Columbus landed in Cuba in 1492 and introduced cigars to Europe. Learn more about their legacy and take a glimpse of this industry during a visit to a cigar factory. Then revel in Cuban art at the National Museum of Fine Arts.

Enrichment: Contemporary Art. Join Wilfredo Benítez—from the Ludwig Foundation, a nonprofit arts advocacy group—to discuss contemporary Cuban artists.

Discovery: Inside an Artist’s Studio. Visit Casa Fuster, the home and studio of Jose Fuster. Join a local artist, discuss his work, and learn about the obstacles to opening a private studio and the opportunities for Cuban artists. Enjoy lunch at Casa Fuster.

Discovery: La Quinta Santa Venia. Visit a private home for senior citizens to engage with the residents and nuns who work there.

Discovery: Afro-Cuban Dance. Discover the delights of Afro-Cuban dance. Born and raised in Havana, these dancers were once part of many studios and troupes; now they teach others about their passion. You may try a few steps too!

Tonight, savor a delicious dinner at La Foresta.

Discovery: Rural Cuba. Venture through rural communities and tobacco plantations to the Sierra del Rosario mountain range and Las Terrazas, a model socialist community established in the 1980s. Visit an elementary school, and explore the town and an art studio. Dine on cuisine prepared with local, organic vegetables for lunch; discuss the agricultural industry with the chef; and meet the community gardeners at the organic garden.

Discover your own dining pleasures during dinner at leisure this evening.

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Discovery: Hemingway & Sugar Cane. En route to Cienfuegos, visit La Finca Vigia, or “lookout farm,” the home of author Ernest Hemingway. Travel to Australia, a former sugar cane factory. After being introduced by Spanish conqueror Diego Velázquez, Cuba became the world’s largest sugar exporter in the 19th and 20th centuries. During a tour, meet former workers and mechanics. Relax for lunch at a local restaurant.

Discovery: Introducing Cienfuegos. See Parque Martí, and admire the pretty cathedral.
Check in to the Hotel Jagua, and enjoy dinner at a local establishment.

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Discovery: Trinidad & Local Life. Explore the city of Trinidad, a UNESCO World Heritage site. In Plaza Mayor, see the Iglesia de la Santísima Trinidad, Cuba’s oldest church; the Museo de Arquitectura; and the Museo Romántico de Artes Decorativas. Enjoy a visit with the Mata family in their home, and learn about typical Cuban life. Savor a buffet lunch at the Plaza Mayor.

Free Time: Enjoy leisure time near the Plaza.

Discovery: Musical Cienfuegos. At the Teatro de Cienfuegos, watch a foot-tapping musical performance by renowned musicians. Talk with members of the ensemble, and learn about their music and training.

Enrichment: Meet the People. Gather for a Farewell Dinner at El Lagarto, and talk with the owners, Maylin Cruz Garcia and Antonio “Tony” Lleonart Ordones.

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Discovery: Health Care. After breakfast, visit a maternity home and speak with the medical staff about their country’s health care system. Transfer to the Cienfuegos airport for the return flight to Miami.

*Itinerary subject to change due to local conditions.

Contact

Contact Laura DeRose at Ohio State Alumni Tours
Phone: 614-292-2372 or 800-852-TOUR (8687), ext. 2
Email: derose.25@osu.edu

Space is limited. Book your tour now!