Created for the traveler who wants to explore the iconic aspects of Cuba: eco-agriculture, rum, cigars, art and music.
We will personalize each trip itinerary based on how you answer your Participant Information Form. Additionally, know that while we do our best to adhere to our planned itineraries, traveling in Cuba requires flexibility, and changes to our scheduled activities may occur.
Day 1: Welcome to culturally-rich Cuba. We have taken care of everything, and we will greet you at the airport upon your arrival. We will assist you in checking in to your casa particular (bed-and-breakfast), where you can refresh. For convenience, all of our casas will be near each other and also internet access, just in case you need it. After a brief orientation we will take a walk down the famous Obispo Street in Havana Vieja, ending at La Floridita, a favorite haunt of Ernest Hemingway, and birthplace of the daiquiri. Enjoy a traditional Cuban dinner overlooking the city at one of Cuba’s finest restaurants.
Day 2: Explore Habana Vieja. Bring your best walking shoes. After a generous breakfast on the terrace of your casa, we will begin our walking tour of the old Spanish colonial city, guided by our Cuban expert in the history of Havana. The famous art deco Bacardi Building illustrates the wealth and power of the Bacardi family in 1930. As we learn about Cuba’s centuries of rich history through our walking tour, we will also visit some of it’s current residents, who have offered to show us how they live. Tonight we dine with a few Cuban professionals who will further inform our perspective of modern Cuba.
Day 3: Rum tour: We will visit the famous Partagas Cigar Factory and wet our whistles at a couple rum distilleries for a brief tour and a taste, working our way around Havana. We will lunch at the famous La Guarida gourmet restaurant, where the groundbreaking movie Fresia y Chocolate was filmed.
Day 4: Emmy-nominated children’s SOLFA choir. During the poverty-stricken “Special Period” that Cuba endured after the Soviet Union collapsed, localized community projects were organized, many of which were created to teach children art and music in order to lift people’s spirits. We will spend this morning visiting a project that we have financially supported over the years. Mailan’s children's choir was recognized more than a decade ago by Fidel Castro himself as one of the most promising and talented community projects in the country. They have invited us to visit a rehearsal in the Jose Marti Monument, located in the Revolutionary Plaza, the seat of Cuban government. After lunch, we will refresh with some fresh-pressed sugarcane juice at Hemingway’s preserved finca, where he did much of his writing.
Day 5: To verdant Vinales. After a beautiful drive through the countryside we arrive in the jewel of the Pinar del Rio tobacco growing region. We will lunch in a well-regarded farm-to-table restaurant overlooking the valley, and then we will visit a tobacco farm to begin learning about the process of making Cuba’s finest cigars. After dinner we will have a traditional Cuban dance lesson.
Day 6: Cigars where land meets the sea. Visit a small tobacco processing factory, and learn about the process of curing the leaves before they are rolled. After we will take a day trip north to white-sand beach, where you may feel free to experiment with what you have learned about Cuba’s rum and cigars.
Day 7: Las Terrazas, Havana. On our return to Havana we will stop by tranquil Las Terrazas, a ecologically sustainable community, where we will have lunch and visit a restored coffee farm. Dinner at one of Havana’s finest tonight.
Day 8: Cuba Libro and the Art Factory. After a Q&A with esteemed writer Connor Gorry about current affairs in Cuba we will have a conversational exchange with someone who can offer the native Cuban perspective. After that we will have a private tour of FAC, the famous Cuban Art Factory, and then dinner at the world-renowned Cocinero, next door.
Day 9: Doctors and Bellas Artes. Our friend Dr. Carlos has invited us to visit his humble Centro Havana clinic, where we will catch a brief glimpse of Cuban medicine on the most local level. We will take in the vibrant street life of Central Havana as we take bici-taxis along San Rafael street, passing a vegetable market on our way to the internationally renowned Bellas Artes collection of historical Cuban art.
Day 10: Safely home. After breakfast, we will deliver you to the airport with ample time to comfortably check in for your flight. We will provide you with travel documents verifying that you visited Cuba legally. Know that US Customs law recently changed so that you may bring back to the US up to $400 worth of Cuban goods, including up to $100 in cigars and rum, but you will find this to be nothing compared to the lifetime of memories that you will have acquired.
Accommodations, all group meals, museum/club entry fees, expert guides, ground transportation, bottled drinking water, and other group costs are covered. Additionally, gratuities for restaurant service, drivers, and general group activities is included (travelers may tip guides and musicians as you deem appropriate based on your satisfaction). We will connect you with our experienced travel agent to arrange transportation to/from Havana, Cuba, or you may research your own flight to Cuba. Upon registration, we will send you a pre-trip information packet to help inform you and prepare you for an amazing cross-cultural experience. We take care of as much as possible so that you can relax. Price is per person, double occupancy. For a single room, add $495.
We limit each trip to a maximum of 10 travelers (for comparison, most other Cuba tour companies cap groups at 20 people). We prefer to keep group numbers small in order to ensure an authentic cultural experience. You will thank us.
Soltura is a Spanish word that loosely translated means with confidence, fluently, with ease. We pride ourselves on leading culturally-immersive tours with a focus on the arts and culture of Cuba, going above and beyond to ensure that our travelers have comfortable, yet truly enriching cultural experiences. Along the way, we will introduce you to some interesting people who will help inform your experiences in Cuba. You may create some lasting friendships on this journey, and you will certainly create a lifetime of memories.