Print this trip dossier

Journey Latin America asks you to accept cookies for performance and social media purposes. We use cookies on our website to personalise content, evaluate website traffic and enhance performance. You can delete or restrict cookies via your web browser. To get more information about these cookies and the processing of your personal data see our Cookie Policy. Do you accept these cookies and the processing of personal data involved? Find out more


Parakeet: Cuba Beyond the beach

UK clients depart Thursday on a direct flight, arriving Havana, Cuba, the same day.
 

Day 1

Overnight in the capital.
 
Havana
Those passengers arriving on an international flight will be met at the airport by your local tour guide or representative who will escort you to the group hotel.

In the evening head out into Havana to hear to some of the all pervasive salsa which dominates the music scene. You may catch local people playing dominoes while you enjoy a cold mojito cocktail.

The streets of La Habana Vieja were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982, and the subsequent restoration of this part of town has transformed it into arguably Latin America's finest colonial quarter, in marked contrast to the rambling, potholed streets and crumbling façades around it.

Show more Show less
Havana

Days 2-3

Fly to eastern Cuba and travel on to the colonial port Baracoa.
 
Baracoa
Fly to eastern Cuba, before travelling on to Baracoa, Cuba's most easterly point, and the first Spanish settlement on the island (Columbus landed here in 1492). It remained isolated from the rest of the country, only accessible by sea, until the construction of a mountain road, La Farola, in the 1960s.The town is set in a spectacular curve of mountains and feels as if it has been suspended in time; isolation has protected it from the excesses of tourism, and it's a delight to wander the streets and take in the surprisingly vibrant and authentic nightlife.

The surrounding region is one of rich, tropical beauty, and a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Excursions include a boat trip on the Yumari River, passing cocoa and coconut crops with the background noise supplied by a myriad of tropical birds. The more active may want to ascend 'El Yunque' an anvil-shaped mountain that dominates the skyline. The climb is steep and there are wonderful views from the top over Baracoa Bay.

Show more Show less
Baracoa

Day 4

Drive to Santiago.
 

You drive up and along the winding road crossing the mountains between Baracoa and Santiago (6hrs). You often do not see another vehicle as you pass dense tropical vegetation, with the occasional panorama over the coast. As the vehicle slows, people emerge from the forest bearing handfuls of tiny bananas or treats made from coconut to sell or swap.

Day 5

Explore the city and take in a salsa show at night.
 
Cuba Musicians
Santiago is Cuba's second city and a town with its own pace of life; the city is lively, noisy and frenetic. From the rooftop of the Casa Granda Hotel in the main square there are views over the colonial centre and across to the glimmering waters of the Caribbean and the Sierra Maestra mountains.

You’ll visit to the Moncada Barracks, where Castro and his ill-prepared guerrillas launched their Revolution in 1953. It's a museum and a school now, but the walls are still riddled with bullet holes.

There are optional excursions in the surrounding area. Visit the Castillo del Morro San Pedro de la Roca, a fortress poised on the high cliffs which flank the entrance to the Bahia de Santiago or relax in the rural village of Cayo Granma, an excellent place for a peaceful meal. In the evening the city's mainly Afro- Caribbean population come alive and there is a fantastic music scene.

Show more Show less
Cuba Musicians

Day 6

Drive to peaceful Bayamo.
 

Travel to Bayamo (2-3hrs), the second oldest town in Cuba, and the birthplace of Cuban independence in 1898. Set on the edge of the Sierra Maestra mountains, it is a relaxed, pleasant town. Unusually for Cuba it has little in the way of colonial architecture as most of its original buildings were destroyed in a fire in the late 19th century. But there is a pretty main square and a park, which you will stroll through on your walking tour and the inhabitants are laid-back and friendly.

Day 7

Explore the Sierra Maestra; hike to Castro’s revolutionary hideout.
 
Sierra Maestra
You continue an hour by road up into the mountains of the Sierra Maestra National Park. The region contains some of the island's most spectacular scenery; deep, lush, forested hills stretching as far as the eye can see, and the occasional vista down to the coast.

Its revolutionary heritage is legendary: it was in these remote mountains that Fidel and Che started the Revolution, gathering and training the campesinos who were to join their army, and planning their attacks on the incumbent regime. There is a visit to the wooden shack that served as Castro's base of operations, the Comandancia de la Plata, during the Revolution's initial guerrilla war. The Sierra is also home to Pico Turquino, at 1,972m Cuba's highest peak. You overnight in a hotel in the village of Santo Domingo at the bottom of the valley.

Show more Show less
Sierra Maestra

Day 8

Visit the university town of Camagüey.
 

Today is spent travelling north to Camagüey (5hrs), a lively university city renowned for its ballet, music, and fine examples of unspoiled colonial architecture. You will see the characteristic tinajones clustered in patios and on the streets; these large clay pots were used in the colonial era for storing water in times of drought.

Days 9-10

Explore and relax in Trinidad and on nearby Caribbean beaches.
 
Trinidad Cuba

Continue west to Trinidad via the Valle de los Ingenios (5-6hrs with stops). This is a valley of sugar mills, where you visit a farm and climb the tower from where colonists kept a close eye on the slaves working in the plantations below.

Trinidad was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988. Its popularity has not affected its colonial charm and unhurried atmosphere. Low-rise, brightly painted houses with vast shutters open out onto cobbled streets, palm trees dot the main plaza and evenings go on to the early hours with dancing and music each night.

There is an informal walking tour and a number of optional excursions available. Drive up into the shady environs of the Escambray Mountains where you may spot the national bird, the tocororo, along one of the walking trails whilst en route to a waterfall for a refreshing dip. Or relax beneath the shade of a palm tree at Playa Ancón, a wide stretch of white sand.

Show more Show less
Trinidad Cuba

Day 11

Drive to Santa Clara; visit Che Guevara’s memorial, continue to Viñales.
 

Leave the coast and head inland to Santa Clara (2.5 hrs). Over 55 years ago Che Guevara, assisted by just 18 guerrillas, captured the railway here, in a move that was instrumental in the triumph of the Revolution. Today, this vibrant university town is home to an excellent museum dedicated to the events of the late 1950s and to Che Guevara. There is time to visit the museum, Che's mausoleum and a monument and plaza dedicated to the man and the Revolution. Continue onto Viñales by private bus (5-6 hrs).

Viñales is a small, bucolic town tucked away in the Sierra de los Organos, in the west of the island. The shady high street is lined with trees, wooden colonnades and one-storey, red-roofed houses. Horse and carts clatter along the main road and children play baseball with sticks and stones outside the dilapidated whitewashed church in the main square. There is a splendid old chemist's shop and a few other bare-shelved stores, as well as a couple of salsa bars that attract a lively crowd in the evening.

Day 12

Excursions and walks in and around Viñales.
 
Vinales

The valley has a distinctive landscape, with dramatic limestone mountains, known as mogotes jutting into the sky from a lush, fertile plain. Using oxen and carts, local farmers cultivate the red soil of the valley floor for fruit, vegetables and tobacco, and the countryside is peppered with thatched curing barns for drying the tobacco leaves.

Included is a guided walk through this beautiful valley; the trails pass alongside fields being tilled by straw hatted farmers and their cattle, and you may have the opportunity to visit a campesino family in their home, where they'll brew you up a coffee, roll a cigar and talk to you about life on the land.

Show more Show less
Vinales

Day 13

Travel back to Havana via Las Terrazas.
 

Travel back to Havana stopping en route to visit the community project of Las Terrazas in the Sierra del Rosario UNESCO biosphere reserve. This is Cuba's premier centre for ecotourism, offering the opportunity to get to know the local community, who coexist harmoniously with their surroundings.

Day 14

Walking tour of old Havana.
 
Vinales
Today there is an informal walking tour of Old Havana. The streets of La Habana Vieja were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982, and the subsequent restoration of this part of town has transformed it into arguably Latin America's finest colonial quarter, in marked contrast to the rambling, potholed streets and crumbling façades around it. Stroll along the cobbles, between grand, pastel-hued mansions and take in the bustling street life, the music that seeps out of every doorway and the gargantuan, crumbling 1950s American cars that clog the narrow streets. You'll have trouble keeping your camera by your side as iconic images flash before you around each and every corner.

The afternoon is free to further explore the atmospheric streets, visit some museums, do some last minute shopping or simply relax with a mojito.
Show more Show less
Vinales

Day 15

Return by bus to Havana airport. Depart on international flight or extension.
 

UK clients arrive home the following day, Friday.
 

Speak to an expert Travel Consultant or send us your enquiry today.

Start planning your trip

Our travel experts all have first-hand experience, which they are excited to share with you.

97% of our clients rated their experience with us as Excellent or Good.

Speak to an expert Travel Consultant or send us your enquiry today. Parakeet: Cuba Beyond the beach

  • Cayo Levisa beach extension 5 days from £654pp

    Spend a few days unwinding on Cayo Levisa, a sugar-white sand beach on a coral islet situated close to the coast of western Cuba. With its and turquoise seas of glassy translucence and remote location this low key beach property offers the perfect alternative to the major resorts in other parts of the island.  Settle down and read a book, sip mojitos or venture into the warm waters of a turquoise sea: there are good snorkelling and scuba diving opportunities.

    Day 1: Private transfer by road from Havana to the small pier at Palma Rubia. After a serene 30 min boat ride, continue on foot to the beach. All cabins have wonderful sea views.

    Days 2, 3: At leisure.

    Day 4: Transfer to Havana via the tobacco plantations and limestone hills of rural Viñales to connect with your international flight.

    UK clients arrive home the following day.

    Full board on days 2 & 3.

 

The Journey Latin America Difference

The UK's No1

We are the original Latin America specialists, creating award-winning holidays to every corner of the region since 1980.

Unrivalled knowledge

All of our staff have lived, worked or travelled extensively throughout Latin America.

Dedicated Expert

The same specialist Travel Consultant will handle your trip from start to finish.

Tailor-made Specialists

Our experts excel at creating truly personalised itineraries based on our wealth of knowledge and expertise.

The very best guides

All our local guides are carefully selected to ensure you benefit from the very best experience in each destination.

Peace of mind

We are a fully bonded tour operator, registered with ATOL, ABTA and AITO, meaning our holidays include full financial protection. Whilst you're away you'll have access to our 24/7 emergency UK helpline.

Do you have a question?

Ask about this trip

Or speak to an expert on 03098589426

Close

Please select from the following:

Start Date
End Date
Price pp
Single
Supplement
Start Date

14 Nov 2019

End Date

28 Nov 2019

Price pp

£2,898

Single
Supplement

£389

Start Date

19 Dec 2019

End Date

2 Jan 2020

Price pp

£2,898

Single
Supplement

£389

Start Date

6 Feb 2020

End Date

20 Feb 2020

Price pp

£2,798

Single
Supplement

£411

Start Date

9 Apr 2020

End Date

23 Apr 2020

Price pp

£2,798

Single
Supplement

£411

Start Date

12 Nov 2020

End Date

26 Nov 2020

Price pp

£2,998

Single
Supplement

£411

Start Date

17 Dec 2020

End Date

31 Dec 2020

Price pp

£2,998

Single
Supplement

£411

Sign up to our newsletter

Sign up to our twice monthly newsletter and be the first to know about our latest news, offer and competitions.

Sign up with...

Your email

Or...

Using a social account is fast and means you don't need to remember a password.

We never share your data either - see our terms & conditions

Facebook Connect

Remember, you can unsubscribe at any time.

To see how we take care of your data please review our Privacy Policy

Thanks for subscribing – we’ll be in touch!

You are not subscribed. Some error happened.

Share this Page

Social share page will open in new window

Send a friend

reCaptcha_try_again

Page Full Path: /sitecore/content/JLA/Home/destinations/cuba/holidays/parakeet-cuba-beyond-the-beach/itinerary

Page ID: {44021847-AE2D-4C71-B4E8-D25210F1E5B0}

Page Name: itinerary

Page Display Name: Itinerary

Page Template Name: T014-Group-DetailedItinerary-JJ

Page Template ID: {5706736A-C943-48B6-A9E2-E71F445F67EB}

Parent ID: {FC0A8BB8-A9B0-4CB3-85E7-28BA3AB1BC90}

Parent Name: parakeet-cuba-beyond-the-beach

Parent Display Name: Parakeet: Cuba Beyond the beach

Parent Template Name: T013-Group-Tour-JJ

Parent Template ID: {94BF26AA-F5AF-4715-95D3-405F5E74AE8F}