fbpx

The Best of Cuba

From
  • $3999
    Air+Tax Included
  • 9
    Days
  • Average Tour Review

HAVANA, CIENFUEGOS, TRINIDAD, CAMAGUEY & HOLGUIN

JUST IN: Cruises to Cuba can no longer operate, but smarTours People to People Programs for 2019 and 2020 are officially authorized. Under the new regulations, pre-existing reserved people to people programs to Cuba are protected, so we can offer you our full range of Cuba programs- from our culturally immersive and experience-rich Cuba Up Close to our inclusive multi-city Best of Cuba and our exciting new launch of Cuba Highlights for 2020! Due to increased demand, there are limited spots left for 2019 and 2020, so book today!

CNN

Itinerary at
a Glance

  • 1 night in Miami
  • 2 nights in Havana
  • 2 nights in Cienfuegos
  • 1 night in Camaguey
  • 2 nights in Holguin

Tour
Highlights

  • A true “people-to-people” experience with cultural exchanges such as visits with artists, musical performances, and local organizations
  • Riding in American Vintage Automobiles (Havana)
  • Home of Ernest Hemingway (Havana)
  • Cigar Factory (Havana)
  • Casa Fuster (Havana)
  • Bay of Pigs Museum (Giron)
  • Walking Tour of Trinidad
  • Bici-Taxi Tour of Camaguey
  • Beaches of Guardalavaca (Holguin)

Activity Level: Explorer 

Your Tour
Includes

  • Round-trip airfare from Miami
  • Airfare taxes, fees & fuel surcharges
  • Health insurance in Cuba (mandatory)
  • Cuban Visa (for US Citizens) & Cuban Departure Tax
  • Intra-Cuba ground transportation and transfers
  • Pre-night in Miami Airport Hotel
  • Accommodations at First Class hotels in Cuba
  • 20 meals: 8 full buffet breakfasts (B), 7 lunches (L) and 5 dinners (D)
  • Comprehensive People-to-People experiences and cultural tours including admission fees, following U.S. regulation CFR 515.565
  • Experienced Cuban English-speaking guide and a USA Tour Director throughout

Tour Itinerary

Click the Day by Day itinerary above (or swipe on mobile devices) to see the experiences that await on each day of your tour.

Pre-Night in Miami

Your unforgettable Cuba vacation begins today with a night in Miami. After independent check-in at your hotel, join your US Tour Director for an orientation meeting!

Depart Miami/Arrive Havana (Cuba)

This morning, you’ll grab a quick breakfast before heading to the airport for your short flight to Havana, the largest and liveliest city in Cuba (and the Caribbean). With over 500 years of fascinating and tumultuous history, Havana was once a slave port for the Spanish and once the gambling capital for the US mafia, yet despite ups and downs, Cuba’s capital has emerged at the forefront of modern Latino culture. Upon arrival in Havana, you’ll be greeted by your English-speaking Cuban guide and taken to Revolution Square (Plaza de Revolucion), the site of many…

Havana

After a sumptuous breakfast, explore Old Havana with a walking tour of the plaza squares. Marvel at the spectacular colonial baroque architecture while learning more about the history of this magnificent capital city from a local expert. Then tour a cigar factory to learn about one of Cuba’s most recognized industries, interact with the factory workers, and witness a rolling demonstration. and see how famous Havana Cigars are made. Later, as you enjoy an included lunch at a paladar, you’ll interact with a Cuban baseball player who will shed light on a shared pastime for both Cuba…

Havana/Bay of Pigs/Cienfuegos

This morning, depart vibrant Havana for Cienfuegos and Trinidad, with an important stop at Playa Giron to visit the Bay of Pigs Museum along the way. The Bay of Pigs, known as Invasion de Bahia de Cochinos, was a CIA-sponsored counter-revolutionary attack by the US government in 1961 that was rebuffed by the Cuban armed forces led by Fidel Castro, leader of the the revolutionary left-wing government. At the museum, you’ll see the Cuban perspective on the conflict. You’ll continue on towards Cienfuegos, a historic city on the southern coast of Cuba, known as the…

Cienfuegos/Trinidad/Cienfuegos

After breakfast, drive to Trinidad, a quaint yet much-heralded town that recently celebrated its 500th birthday. Considered one of the best preserved cities in the Caribbean from the time when sugar cane dominated the region, Trinidad is as charming as it is old, and there’s no better way to see this historic town than with a walking tour. After an included lunch, visit a Santeria temple and learn about this religion of Caribbean and African origin with clear influences from Roman Catholicism. You’ll also visit Palacio Cantero, which is Trinidad’s most well known…

Cienfuegos/Camaguey

Following breakfast, we depart for Camaguey, Cuba’s third largest city and home to some of the country’s greatest artistic talent. Founded in the early 16th century, Camaguey is known for its winding alleys and forked streets that lead to squares of different sizes. After lunch at a local paladar, you’ll see a Flamenco Dance troupe! Check into your boutique hotel and enjoy a welcome drink at your hotel. Then you’ll take a tour through the windy streets of Camaguey in Bic-Taxis (Bicycle Taxis), visiting a variety of talented artists, including Pepe Gutierrez, whose work with…

Camaguey/Holguin

This morning, you’ll visit the Casanova Pottery Studio where you’ll learn about Camaguey’s famous large red pots called tinajones. Afterwards, drive to the beautiful coastal Guardalavaca region in the province of Holguin. When Christopher Columbus laid eyes on the Holguin coastline in 1492, he declared it “the most beautiful land human eyes have ever seen.” The spectacular beaches set against a backdrop of rolling hills and rugged mountains will be sure to take your breath away. Arrive in Guardalavaca, a seaside town in Holguin known for its white sandy…

Holguin

This morning, drive to the Gibara, a quaint seaside town that was once the main port on the northeastern coast of Cuba, where you’ll enjoy a true people-to-people interaction at the Casa de Cultura (Cultural House) Community by interacting with community members of all ages and marveling at their artistic talent. Then, enjoy an included lunch at a local paladar and visit the accompanying organic herb garden. Following lunch, you’ll get the opportunity to meet local fishermen in Gibara and understand the life of a fisherman in northeastern Cuba.  Later, back at the resort hotel,…

Depart Holguin/Arrive Miami

After a sumptuous breakfast, enjoy a bit of time at leisure at your beautiful beach resort. Transfer to the airport and say “adios” to your Cuba tours before boarding your return flight to Miami. Your memorable Cuba vacations come to an end as you arrive back in Miami later today. (B)

Guided Tour Pricing

DepartReturnDepart - ReturnBest Value Pricing - Reserve by Oct 31, 2019Reserve after
Oct 31, 2019
Select Tour
20192019w/ eCheck DiscountSaleAfter Sale
December 25January 2Dec 25 -
Jan 2
$3,999$4,099$4,399 Sold Out

Rates are based on double occupancy.
Single room supplement is $599
November 2019 Onwards: Single room supplement is $649

* Note: All trips begin with a mandatory orientation meeting at the designated hotel in Miami on Day 1 and depart from Miami for Havana on Day 2. For example, the Dec. 27 tour has its Miami orientation meeting in the evening on Dec. 27 and departs from Miami for Havana on Dec. 28.

For more information on this tour, please contact us here or call us during business hours (Mon-Fri, 9:00-9:00 EST and Sat-Sun, 10:00-6:30 EST) at 800-337-7773.

Reservations and Payments 
Reservations can be made by phone (1-800-337-7773) and will be confirmed upon receipt of $300 non-refundable, non-transferable deposit which must be received within 48 hours of reservation. Full payment is due 90 days prior to departure. Baggage fees may apply. Space and prices subject to availability. For complete booking information and terms & conditions click here.

Reviews

Naomi

My husband and I and our 4 adult children went on the Best of Cuba trip. We had an amazing time. Both the American and the Cuban tour guides were friendly, well organized, and informative. We had the opportunity to meet with and interact with a number of artists, musicians, educators, and theatrical performers. We covered a lot of ground and as a result had long bus rides, but this could not be helped as the roads were not always in good repair. Twice an informative film was shown on the bus with discussion afterwards and I think that we would have benefited from even more of these since there was ample time. Our driver was excellent and we had complete confidence in him. Everyone we met was welcoming and friendly and we were happy with the hospitality and service at the hotels and restaurants that were selected. Our group was just the right size—21 travelers and the 3 staff members. There was vague mention about bringing toys or school supplies to the children that we were to meet one day and I wish that we had been given more specific information on what to bring as I did not bring anything and wished that I had. Overall it was a fascinating experience and we hope to return to Cuba some day.

Merton

excellent leader and Cuban guide. It exceeded my expectation.

Mary

'People to People' tour of Cuba was excellent. Variety of experiences - art, music, dance, history, architecture, food, culture. Tour guide Randy and Cuban guide Martha were excellent.

Anonymous

It was a nice trip. Lots of do's and don't does, according to the tour director. Cuba is a different country to tour as they have strict rules about everything!

Anonymous

Well run tour but some of the hotels were less than ideal. Not the tours fault. Don't think there were too many 4 or 5 star hotels in Cuba. The one in Havana could have been more central.

Randy

Considering we were in Cuba, I think we went to the best of what was available. A few suggestions; The Crowne Plaza Hotel in Miami by the airport is really starting to look run down--not a great way to start a trip. I would suggest finding a new hotel. On our second day in Cuba, I lost my wallet and had to track down my tour leader late at night--I think we should all have the room numbers of our tour leaders as we arrive in each hotel so finding them is not another burden when you need them. We had salsa lessons scheduled for our stay in Holguin (actually at the all-inclusive resort) but the instructor never showed up and the leader said this was the second time that happened--time for a new salsa instructor. The tour guide in Cuba, Adriana, was exceptional--obviously, I have no way to compare her to your other leaders in Cuba, but we have been on a few of your trips and on others and she was at the very top of the list in terms of tour guides--her knowledge and personality were a perfect combination--don't let her go!

Judith/Tim K

Just returned from our third tour with Smartours and once again it was excellent. Our local guide, Marta, showed us a far different Cuba than we ever were anticipating! So glad we went now and were able to see the real Colonial Cuba, before further development moves it forward.

mg

this was one terrific tour! a great sampler of what cuba has to offer. the guides elio and randy were superb. i learned so much and my curiosity has continued. i've done much research on the history which was and is quite amazing. hotels were air conditioned and comfortable. i thank smartours for this wonderful opportunity.

Mona R

Excellent Tour. Tour guides were outstanding.

Rochelle

This was one of the most interesting, well designed tours we have taken. The people to people exchange was intellectually and culturally stimulating and our local guide Adriana was a delightful and insightful host. We were surprised every day by the warm and generous welcome we received from everyone we met. The trip exceeded every expectation!

Howard R

Seeing Cuba is like going back in a time capsule. The cars, the buildings, the music. For those who love exploring, Cuba is an amazing journey. Time stopped in the mid 50s! The only thing modern in Cuba are the people and their customs, the wonderful food and the air conditioned modern tour buses. The people and food are wonderful, colorful and very palatable. The countryside is clean as are the cities. If you are looking for 21st century modern, then Cuba is not for you. If you want to see a country of beautiful colonial buildings, beautiful people, beautiful cars of the 50s, and what a country looked like before modernization takes hold, go to CUBA now!!

Mary C

Our November 3 tour was far more than we could have imagined. Our smarTours guide, Pauline, and our Cuban guide Elio worked so hard to make every day more perfect than the day before. Have travelled the world with SmarTours and this was the best. Don't wait for the cruise ships to start arriving, The crowds will detract from the easy flow of the Cuban people and opportunities to be nearly alone in one of Havana's squares will be gone. As others have stated, the Cuban population welcomed us as family. Thanks, smarTours for doing your homework for this tour. It was fantastic!

JANE E

A fabulous tour full of cultural depth, giving an excellent glimpse of Cuba today that is impossible to know outside of seeing and experiencing the breadth of the country. No book or series of articles does the country justice. We had a brilliant, personable guide who had a Google mind for all things Cuba and Cuban, both inside and outside of the country. People from the States are genuinely respected and welcomed with open, friendly arms by a warm population on all parts of the island. We were free to independently explore places between a plethora of meaningful activities. In the next years Cuba will change greatly so with enthusiasm it is highly recommended that a trip be planned to see what it is like in this important developmental stage of growth. One will not be disappointed by the visit or the quality of Smartours planning.

joan p

I wasn't sure what to expect but this was what I hoped for and more. Our tour director Eleonora Bellini was excellent, very knowledgeable and organized. Our National Guide Edel was terrific as well...he trod the line between the two cultures with grace and fairness. The hotels were all great, very different from one another but comfortable and attractive. The paladars were lovely especially La Cueva in Gibarra. Highly recommend this tour.

Barbara D

The trip was so much more than I ever expected. We visited with the Cuban people, explored the country side, traveled in vintage cars, ate in local paladars and visited many historical sites. More important, we saw how the average Cuban lives, works and enjoy their lives. This trip was a "life experience" back into a time we have not experienced before. Thank you for the experience and for giving us the opportunity to visit Cuba with our wonderful guide Jorge. I would recommend the trip for anyone wanting a true "People to People" experience.
Leave a Review