Cuba is a fascinating country. See it for yourself on this unique and exciting school trip to Cuba to experience the legacy of Fidel Castro's Cuban Revolution, and what it means for the people today. At a time of considerable social and political development, the next year will be very important to determining the direction the government takes. Relations with the US have improved considerably, opening up new frontiers in economic opportunity and diplomatic discussion. On this special trip we will get under the skin of both historical and contemporary Havana with guided tours around the whole city, including a visit to the memorable Museo de la Revolucion. We will then continue to the Bay of Pigs to learn about the botched invasion attempt to overthrow the Castro regime, before continuing to the magical colonial town of Trinidad. Via Santa Marta to visit the Che Guevara museum, we will head back to Havana for a morning seminar/conference to meet Cuban students and discuss subjects such as economics, history, politics and art. We will round off the trip with a final afternoon at the beach to relax and discuss what we have learnt in this extraordinary island. Although the political situation is unique and interesting, there are many other things that make a visit to Cuba special, in particular the music, the landscapes and the welcoming people. Hasta la Victoria Siempre (Always onwards to victory!)
THIS IS JUST A SAMPLE ITINERARY. IT CAN BE TAILORED TO YOUR REQUIREMENTS.
Upon arrival we will be greeted by a friendly representative of World Youth Adventures and driven privately to your group hotel. After some time to freshen up we will have a group meeting to discuss the trip with a chance to ask any questions about the itinerary or Cuba in general. Afterwards we will make our way through the unique streets of Havana to a local restaurant to enjoy a welcome meal and celebrate our arrival.
After breakfast we will head straight out into the action to experience the colonial area of Havana Vieja, the Old Town, filled with grand plazas and crumbling churches. We will visit the Plaza de Armas, Plaza de San Francisco de Asis and Plaza Vieja, as well as passing some of Ernest Hemmingway's old hangouts such as the Ambos Mundos hotel and La Bodeguita del Medio. After a break for a hearty lunch, we will take a step forward into the history of modern Cuba, with an exciting trip to the Museo de la Revolucion, situated in what used to be the presidential palace of the ousted Batista. Here we will learn the story of the Revolution (from a pro-Castro standpoint!) with numerous displays, maps and guns, including the legendary Granama boat, used by Castro and his men to sail from Mexico to Cuba to launch their revolution. We will later head to the world famous Malecon (sea wall) to take a walk and view the real Cuban life. We can then visit the main cemetery which is really fascinating, before finishing the tour in the Plaza de la Revolucion, the iconic squaure where Fidel used to give 8 hour speeches to one hundred thousand supporters in the 1960's and 1970s. This evening after an early dinner we will head to the old fortress to watch the canon being fired at 21:00 sharp, an interesting tradition kept alive to this day.
This morning we will set off early for a unique journey to the Bay of Pigs (Playa Larga). A rag tag bunch of CIA funded Cubans attempted to land here in 1961, in an attempt to launch a counter-revolutionary coup d'tat. It was unsuccessful and was repelled by Fidel Castro himself and his army. Today a small museum remains as well as some military paraphernalia. We will take a boat trip at the nearby Laguna de Tesoro (treasure lagoon) as well as enjoying a swim at nearby Cueva de los Peces (fish cave, situated in a sink hole/Cenote). After visiting the museum and enjoying our time at the Caribbean beach we will continue to Cienfuegos, a pleasant colonial town and important port.
This morning we will enjoy a tour of Cienfuegos, in particular the beautiful bay area and sea wall, lined with French colonial architecture and surrounded by the deep blue sea. We will have the opportunity to enjoy lunch at the Cienfuegos yacht club, before driving onto Trinidad, one of the outstanding highlights of any trip to Cuba. We will spend the afternoon wandering the stunning old town, where cobbled streets are lined by colourful houses washed apricot, azul and lime green. The hills can be seen behind the town, and from the south a refreshing sea breeze fills the main plaza in the evening. It's a magical experience, and after a walk we will enjoy dinner together.
This morning we will travel along the famous Sugar Mills Vallety to a former Sugar Hacienda to appreciate the legacy and importance of the crop to the economy and culture of Cuba. In the afternoon we will have free to time to explore the town and surrounding countryside, either by foot or rented bike. A pleasant ride is down the hill to the Ancon Peninsula where there is a lovely beach to cool off from the warm Caribbean sun. Group dinner in the evening in the Old Town.
After breakfast we will check out and drive north to Santa Clara, known for its Che Guevara museum and its accompanying monument of the eternal flame. The Argentine medical student is a fascinating and often misrepresented character in modern history, and here at the museum we can learn more about his life, family and beliefs. After lunch in a local restaurant, we will visit the monument to the 'Armoured Train'. The original shell of the train is still here, blasted off the tracks in a curcial turning point of the war. Che Guevara and a team of 18 other guerillas attacked the train sent by Batista, overpowering the soldiers on board and commandeering the munitions on board. Only hours later, after listening to a speech from Che, the soldiers sent by Batista to attack him, actually turned against their leader and joined the Revolution. This was the beginning of the end of the war. We will drive back through the countryside to Havana later in the afternoon, checking into our hotel again and enjoying dinner in a local restaurant.
Per Person, Twin Share