Our tour is based around the revolution of 1953-1959 - a period that led Cuba to being a major player in 20th Century world history, in particular the Cold War. The quintessential figurehead of the Cuban revolution, and symbol of revolutionary struggle around the world is of course Ernesto Ché Guevara. Ché plays a major role in the itinerary of our tour, with visits to his mausoleum, his office and viewing the train he derailed at the Battle of Santa Carlos. You will also visit the historic cities of Havana, Trinidad and San Carlos de la Cabana as well as visiting the Bay of Pigs. It won't all be revolutionary and historic sites though; there will be the opportunity to swim and dive at beautifully scenic beaches as well as drinking and partying at bars and clubs around the cities!
Arrive at the airport and receive transfer to your homestay accommodation.
Free day in Havana.
Early morning depart for Cienfuegos, a five hour drive via the infamous Bay of Pigs.
On the way to Cienfuegos you will firstly pass many citrus plantations through the flat central plain of Cuba. You will then turn off the main highway where suddenly the scenery changes to a densely vegetated swamp, habited by boa snakes and crocodiles. Stop off in this area to visit a crocodile farm at Guama.
Once reaching the Caribbean coast you will travel along the Bay of Pigs through the site where the landing of counter- revolutionary exile militia occurred in 1961. Here you will visit a museum that recounts the events of the conflict that resulted in the first defeat of a U.S backed take over in Latin America. There are several beautiful places to stop for a swim around this area, including a sink hole which resembles a huge natural tropical fish tank. Pack your swimwear and snorkeling gear!
Cienfuegos is known locally as La Perla del Sur - the pearl of the South. Founded by the French, Cienfuegos as a very European feel to it, with a wide Parisian-style boulevard and elegant colonnades.
After checking-in with your host family, the rest of the evening is free to walk around the city and take in the atmosphere.
After breakfast depart Cienfuegos for Santa Clara. Your route, depending on road conditions takes you around or through the Sierra del Escambray, making a few stops along the way. The journey is approximately 70km.
Santa Clara was a key city in the triumph of the Revolution. Upon entering Santa Clara there is a huge statue of Ché Guevara, to commemorate his death and that of the revolutionaries who died with him in Bolivia.
Visit the museum here that is dedicated to his life and revolutionary struggle. This is followed by a walking tour of the city where you will come across significant sites such as the armoured train derailed by Ché and his troops.
After breakfast, leave Santa Clara for a scenic drive through the Escambray mountains, stopping at a waterfall enroute along with lunch at a farmers house.
The city of Trinidad is home to numerous churches and many beautiful colonial buildings and is a UNESCO world heritage site. Nearby is Valle de los Ingenios: Valley of the Sugar Mills and Playa Ancón, where you can enjoy long stretches of unspoiled, white sand beaches. Scuba diving, snorkeling, swimming in waterfalls, and horseriding are other optional activities.
The nightlife in Trinidad is the most varied and intense in all of Cuba. There are numerous live music venues and dance performances each day of the week. This is all amongst the enchanting setting of the old colonial buildings and cobblestone streets.
Overnight in homestay.
After breakfast head off on a tour of Trinidad. La Villa de la Santisima Trinidad was founded by Diego Velazsquez de Cuellar in 1514. The town has a great green mountain backdrop, along with turquoise waters and pure white, sand beaches of the Caribbean Sea just a short distance away.
The town was fairly inactive until the 1800s, when French refugees fleeing a slave revolt in Haiti landed here en masse and brought with them sugar cane cultivation. The new residents settled and farmed in the Valle de Los Ingenios, just northeast of the town. Vast wealth flowed into the local economy from sugar cane cultivation and the area produced one third of the country’s sugar at one point. The sugar boom was terminated by the two wars of independence, but the wealth generated by the industry remains visible in the town’s once grand mansions, colourful public buildings, wrought iron grillwork and cobble-stoned streets. The town and area also saw a lot of action during and following the triumph of the Revolution, as gangs of counter revolutionaries hid out and struck from the safety of the mountains.
On the tour you will visit the Museo Nacional de la Lucha Contra los Bandidos and the Casa de los Mártires de Trinidad which both chronicle the struggles throughout the town’s history.
Stop for lunch in the city before returning to the homestay.
After breakfast you head off for the scenic drive back to Havana. En route you will stop for several photo opportunities and a Cuban lunch stop.
On your return to Havana you will check into your home stay for the rest of the trip located in the centre of the City.
After breakfast you will head out for a City tour of Havana. You will visit the Plaza de Armas and the famous Museo de la Revolucion to learn more about the revolution and it’s history.
After lunch you will visit the Havana Club Museum of Rum. Free samples of course! You will then visit San Carlos de la Cabana fortress where Ché had his office. Afterwards you visit the house where Ché lived post revolution. Rest of the evening at leisure.
Today the tour ends! Free time around Havana before your transfer to the airport.