Western Cuba marvels

Western Cuba Marvels

14 DAYS/ 13 NIGHTS SMALL GROUP CUBA TOUR

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14 days/ 13 Nights

Local english-speaking guide

Entrance fees to local attractions

Legal travel for U.S. citizens

Private air-conditioned transportation

Accommodation in Casa's and/or hotels

Ensuite bathrooms

Breakfasts and selected meals

Group of 2-12 people

Tour Pricing

*Based on staying in Casa’s/B&B’s (Hotel upgrades available on request)

PRIVATE SINGLE ROOM

USD $1975 /PER PERSON

PRIVATE DOUBLE/TWIN ROOM

USD $1650 /PER PERSON

SINGLE WILLING TO SHARE

USD $1650 /PER PERSON

Tour Overview

With this tour, you won’t just be able to see the most beautiful and relevant cities of western Cuba but also dive into the countryside and get some action whilst doing so. There are sets of activities to choose from, which include hiking, horse riding, zip lining, snorkeling, diving and many more.

At the end, you’ll be able to relax in Cuba’s no.1 beach: Varadero. We believe this balance of exploring, action and relaxation will make your holiday in Cuba a memorable one.

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Included activities

  • Old Havana walking tour
  • Convertible classic car tour around New Havana
  • Visit to Hamel's Alley community project
  • Visit to Fusterlandia
  • Partagas Cigar Factory Tour
  • Havana Club Rum Museum tour
  • Mojito and other Cuban cocktails lesson
  • Visit to Soroa's Orchid Garden
  • Visit to Las Terrazas
  • Tobacco Plantation Tour and cigar tasting in Viñales
  • Farm to table lunch experience in Viñales
  • Visit to the Cueva del Indio and the Mural de la Prehistoria in Viñales
  • Snorkelling in Bay of Pigs
  • Visit to Bay of Pigs Museum
  • Walking tour of Cienfuegos City
  • Stopping for a drink at Palacio de Valle
  • Hiking El Nicho Waterfalls
  • Walking tour of Trinidad city
  • Relaxation at Ancon beach near Trinidad
  • Sugar Mills Valley tour
  • Visit to Che Guevara's mausoleum
  • Relaxation at Varadero beach

Private air-conditioned transportation

All the transportation needed to carry out the activities in your itinerary is warrantied, including transfers between destinations. Depending on the size of your party, we’ll be using different types of vehicles to ensure comfort.

Local English-speaking guide

You don’t speak Spanish? That’s not a problem. Your English speaking guide will be there for you every step of the way, like a long time friend showing you their magical country.

Your choice of accommodation

You should know that we have priced this tour staying in Casa’s (the Cuban equivalent of a B&B). We strongly believe this is an ideal way to gain an insight into the country and its people. Of course, you can always request to upgrade your accommodation to hotels.

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Airport transfers

We’ll get sorted your transfers from the airport to your accommodation and vice versa. Just relax and enjoy your flight, leave the rest in our hands.

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A selection of Activities and excursions

We have hand selected a list of activities for you to enjoy while touring Cuba. We believe these activities will give you a good grasp at what Cuba has to offer. There is also enough flexibility for you to choose other options in order to fit your interests and expectations during the trip.

Meals included

Where meals are included we aim to showcase the best of Cuban cuisine by frequenting the growing number of paladares (privately owned restaurants). Where meals are not included, your guide and our team will be happy to make recommendations and reservations as required.

Download our Western Cuba Marvels tour brochure here:

Tour Itinerary

(Click on each day to see description)

Day 1 ARRIVAL - HAVANA

Welcome to Cuba! A member of Cuba 360 will pick you up at the airport, look for our logo with your name on it (or the name of the person in your party who booked the holiday). Next, you will be transferred to your accommodation.

There are several options of places to check out during the evenings. After all, Havana’s nightlife is as unique as its culture and history. We’ll be happy to arrange some of them for you if you want us to. Here are some of the options:

– Visit the Cuban Art Factory (or FAC as locals call it), a space that joins together good drinks with some of the best Cuban contemporary art (Photography, Sculpture, Interior Design, Fashion, Painting, Music, Film, Theatre, etc.). The Cuban Art Factory only opens on weekends and sometimes closes for special events that happen in Havana.
– Head to San Carlos de La Cabaña fortress and witness the Cannon Shot Ceremony, a unique and picturesque show that has been happening every night for the last 300 years.
– Enjoy a unique show at world-famous Tropicana Cabaret, one of the few bastions of Havana’s Las Vegas–style nightlife to survive the revolution.

Day 2 HAVANA

Take a walking tour around the heart of Cuba, Old Havana. Discover the magic that hides in every corner of this audacious city. More than 500 years of history make this the perfect place to unleash your curiosity. Hundreds of buildings from the 19th, 18th, 17th, and even 16th centuries spread around the narrow streets of this romantic city. Walk around this open air museum and delight yourself with the infinity of amazing views that go around in every direction, making impossible not to look and try to capture the moment with your camera. Wander around all the main squares, all of them with their own special places you shouldn’t miss. Also, have a look at the majestic cathedral that stands as an icon of the city, its history and architecture. Discover iconic places like the National Capitol, the Paseo del Prado, the Floridita, La Bodeguita del Medio, the Parque Central, etc.
Jump in a convertible car and explore the more modern parts of the city. Drive through different neighborhoods and discover the highlights of Vedado and Center Havana. Have a look at the Revolution Square, where Fidel Castro used to give endless speeches in front of thousands of his supporters. Drive by the Colon Cemetery, one of the biggest and most important in the world. Enjoy the breeze at El Malecon, Havana’s evocative 7km-long sea drive, a favored meeting place for assorted lovers, philosophers, poets, traveling minstrels, fishers and wistful Florida-gazers. Some of the landmarks we’ll see include the American Embassy, the Hotel Nacional, Havana’s Forest and many more.
Wander along the Callejon de Hamel, Havana’s high temple of Afro-Cuban culture. A whole street full of mural paintings and shrines. The project started back in the 90’s, when artist Salvador Gonzalez decided to repair the deteriorated facades of houses in the alley and covered them with murals related to the Afro-Cuban syncretism. Sunday is the best day to visit it, since it’s when the alley shows its true spirit. That day, the neighbors, dressed up as ancient gods of Yoruba Pantheon, Orishas, welcome visitors and drums go aloud.
Adventure into western Havana and discover Fusterlandia, a huge tilework masterpiece built by local artist Jose Fuster over the last 20 years. If Gaudí reincarnates and decides to go for a tropical spin, this is it. Fuster’s work has covered several suburban blocks with whimsical but highly stylized public art. The centerpiece is the artist’s own house, which you can explore as you check on the different galleries where some of his art is sold, including ceramic tiles and paintings.

Day 3 HAVANA

Let’s have a look at one of Havana’s oldest and most famous cigar businesses, the Real Fábrica de Tabacos Partagás was founded in 1845 by Spaniard Jaime Partagás. It was built in response to the increase in demand this industry experienced during the second half of the 19th century. Specializing in full-bodied cigars, today some 400 workers toil for up to 12 hours a day in here rolling such famous cigars as Montecristos and Cohibas. In your visit, you’ll learn about the long and refined process of cigar manufacturing.

Learn about the Rum production in Cuba with a visit to Havana Club’s Rum Museum. The evolution and history of the whole process will be explained to you in a guided visit, which includes a tasting of a seven-year-old añejo (aged rum) at the end of the tour, along with the opportunity to buy some of the precious liquid.

Dive into San Jose, this former harbor-side warehouse was built in 1885 and is considered the oldest depository in Old Havana. Nowadays the largest handicraft market on the island, Havana’s artisans have here an ideal place in which to exhibit and sell their items, mostly functional yet beautiful accessories in the form of handbags, wallets, shoes, sandals and belts; costume jewelry; toys; masks; and ornamental items made of papier-mâché; paintings, sculptures and ceramic items; clothes; humidors and Afro-Cuban percussion instruments, among others. Don’t forget to look out for guayaberas, the traditional Cuban men’s loose linen shirt. The Center also has a National Patrimony Office that issues the necessary certifications for exporting certain items, such as artwork.

Next, we’ll show you one of our favorite spots in the whole city, a rooftop terrace in Old Havana. Here, you’ll learn how to make a mojito and a canchanchara, two classic Cuban cocktails. There are non-alcoholic options as well. You’ll be able prepare your own and you can drink as many as you like.

Day 4 HAVANA
The day is yours to relax and enjoy in your own way. Ask your guide for optional activities to do. Some of the options include:

– Have a look at the Hotel Nacional and sit in the outdoor patio overlooking the Malecon while having a drink (or two, you are on a holiday after all).
– Take a salsa lesson from one of our virtuous instructors.
– Visit Finca Vigia, Ernest Hemingway’s former house.
– Take a cooking lesson at one of Havana’s most popular restaurants: Ajiaco Cafe.

Day 5 LAS TERRAZAS - SOROA - VIÑALES

Take a walk around the Las Terrazas Township, a small community and nature reserve hidden by the Sierra del Rosario mountains. Walk around and mingle with the locals and enjoy the nature surrounding you, including a small population of pink flamingos that have made a home of this place. Explore Cafetal Buenavista, Cuba’s oldest (now partially restored) coffee plantation, built in 1801 by refugees from Haiti. Much of the property (such as the dormitories that housed the slaves who worked the plantation) is now in ruin, but this adds to its haunting quality.
Continue to the small village of Soroa. Often referred to as The Gate to The Garden of Eden. Visit the orchid garden, which includes the biggest collection of the flower in the island. Have a look at Salto Arco Iris, a magnificent waterfall that forms part of the Rio Manantiades. The great river churns through the rainforest before cascading down 22 meters drop, creating an enclosed pool.
Discover Viñales Valley, one of Cuba’s most magnificent natural settings. Known for its fertile soil, which along with its natural micro-climate, make the land suitable to grow some of the finest tobacco in Cuba, hence, the world. Our first stop will be at Los Jazmines, a lookout point from where you can enjoy the beauty of Viñales’s landscape.

Day 6 VIÑALES

In our day around this lovely town, we’ll visit the Prehistoric Mural, stunning wall painting on the side of a mountain, and the Indian Cave with a boat trip through a subterranean section of the San Juan river. We’ll enjoy lunch at one of the local restaurants, where traditional dishes are made with ingredients that go straight from the farm to the table. After lunch, we’ll visit one of the local tobacco plantations where farmers will explain the process of (artisanal) cigar production. This visit is a great opportunity to witness how people live in the countryside, and the good impact tourism makes in their lives.

Today, you can also choose one of the following activities:

– Zip-lining around the beautiful landscape of Viñales.
– Take a horse ride around the Mogotes and get in touch with the real spirit of this land and its people.

Day 7 BAY OF PIGS

Head to Bay of Pigs, the same place where more than 50 years ago an invasion carried out by Cuban exiles and organized by the US government took place. Bay of pigs is in Zapata Swamp, the biggest natural reserve in Cuba and a place that boasts with wildlife. Some of the nicest features in the area are hidden underwater, making Bay of Pigs a terrific spot for snorkelling and diving. You can relax for the rest of the day in the local beach, where restaurants have their tables less than 10 meters from the water. Just picture yourself enjoying a mojito or a cold beer under a coconut tree whilst feeling the Caribbean breeze in your face, that’ll give you an idea of the magic of this place. Needless to say, seafood in here is as fresh as it gets and most private establishments have a wide selection of it.

Day 8 BAY OF PIGS

We’ll head to the Cueva de los Peces, a 70m-deep cenote (sinkhole) on the inland side of the coast road halfway between Playa Larga and Playa Girón. It’s a pretty spot, as popular with swimmers as snorkelers, for spotting tropical fish. The brave can glide into the darker parts of the underwater cave with diving gear. Hammocks swing languidly around the crystal clear pool, while the beach opposite sparkles with aquatic promise.
Learn about the history of Bay of Pigs invasion at Playa Giron’s museum. This well-kept museum with its gleaming display cases evokes a tangible sense of the history of the famous Cold War episode that unfolded within rifle-firing distance of this spot in 1961. The museum offers two rooms of artifacts from the Bay of Pigs skirmish plus numerous photos of the combat.

Day 9 CIENFUEGOS

Continue south-east to Cienfuegos, one of Cuba’s youngest cities, founded in 1819 by French emigrants from Bordeaux and Louisiana, its elegant classical architecture earned it a UNESCO World Heritage Site listing in 2005. Due to its beauty, economical importance and strategical placement, this city has always been known as the pearl in Cuba’s south coast. Have a walking tour around the city and have a look at the local landmarks, including Tomas Terry Theatre, one of Cuba’s oldest and best preserved. Visit Cienfuegos’s Cathedral, Palacio de Valle, Muelle Real, Jose Marti square and many other iconic spots of the city.
Just when you thought Cienfuegos’ eclectic architecture couldn’t get any more eclectic, you reach the southern end of Punta Gorda where, with a sharp intake of breath, you’ll stumble upon the impossible-to-classify Palacio de Valle. Built in 1917 by Acisclo del Valle Blanco, a wealthy Spaniard from Asturias, the structure resembles an outrageously ornate Moroccan casbah, but draws on a mad mix of Gothic, Byzantine, mudéjar and baroque influences. Batista planned to convert this colorful riot of tiles, turrets and stucco into a casino, until the Cuban Revolution sent the gamblers back to Vegas. Enjoy a drink at the rooftop terrace while overlooking Cienfuegos’ Bay, there is no better place to enjoy the sunset.

Day 10 EL NICHO - TRINIDAD

Today’s adventure will take us to El Nicho, a refreshing waterfall on the mountains of Cienfuegos, reached by a short trail that passes two natural pools (where you can swim). Just beyond the falls is a lookout point offering views over lush mountains and the distant Hanabanilla reservoir.
Discover Trinidad, a perfectly preserved Spanish colonial settlement where the clocks stopped in 1850 and other than by the watches of tourists have yet to restart. Have a walking tour around the city with the opportunity to visit local museums and art galleries. Wander around the Plaza Mayor, one of Cuba’s most charming squares and the center of the town. Stop at the Canchanchara House, a place dedicated to this local drink, very popular around Cuba.

Day 11 TRINIDAD
Today, you can build your own day by choosing two of the following activities:

– Take a salsa lesson. If you love salsa, then you sure know there is no place like Cuba to master this contagious rhythm. In a country where people are born with music in their blood, dancing salsa is just part of every day’s life. So taking a salsa lesson with one of our virtuous salsa instructors is a must if you are in Trinidad or Havana. It doesn’t matter if you are a beginner or you already know how to dance, the lesson will be personalized to your skill level.
– Take a horse ride around the countryside of Trinidad, making stops for some coffee, a dip at a crystal-clear river and later for lunch at one of the local farmers’ improvised restaurants The length of the trip depends on the pace and the duration of the stops, you should expect no less than 3 hours total.
– Adventure into Playa Ancon, less than 15 min away from Trinidad. Ancon is known as the best beach in Cuba’s south coast. Actually, the Cuban government in partnership with Spanish hotel chains Melia and Iberostar are heavily investing in the construction of resorts in the area, so now is a good opportunity to enjoy it before it gets too crowded.

Day 12 SANTA CLARA - VARADERO

Head to the Valle de los Ingenios (literally, Sugar Mills Valley) right outside Trinidad. This area is where the wealth of the city was produced. Most of the mills were destroyed during the War of Independence and the Spanish-Cuban-American War, when the focus of sugar-growing in Cuba shifted west to Matanzas. This valley offers one of the most beautiful natural settings in Cuba. Stop at Manaca-Iznaga’s plantation and climb the imposing tower that used to serve as a place the overlook the slaves and prevent them from running away.
In your way to Varadero, stop at Santa Clara, a city with a very close connection to Che Guevara. At the final days of the fight for the Cuban communist revolution, back in 1958, a series of combats happened here that decided the course of history. Visit Che Guevara’s mausoleum, where his remains are kept, along with the ones of his comrades in arms.
Santa Clara is also known for being kind of an “edgy” city, with a local cultural scene that contrasts with the rest of the country. Santa Clara has the first drag show in Cuba and one of the most prestigious rock festivals in the area.
Continue to Varadero, the most popular beach in Cuba and a must for those who visit it specially looking for the sun and the sand. Varadero is a 25 km peninsula, most it is covered by resorts and white sandy beaches. Don’t worry if you don’t like resorts, you will be staying in a separated area where the beaches are nicer and less busy.

Day 13 VARADERO

During your time in Varadero your will be able to organize through your guide various activities including water sports, snorkeling or diving excursions, jeep safaris, catamaran cruises and there is even a golf course to take advantage of. There is also a local township to explore with a burgeoning restaurant scene and lively nightlife.
In the night, visit the Casa de la Musica de Varadero (literally “Varadero’s music house”) and enjoy some live music, this is also a great opportunity to try some Cuban cocktails and learn some of the basics of Cuban salsa.
Please note: None of these optional activities are included in the itinerary you choose, so the cost is not covered. Let us know and we’ll let you know the estimate price for each activity in advance

Day 14 HAVANA - DEPARTURE

Transfer to Havana’s International airport. It’s time to say goodbye to Cuba, at least for now. It’s sad to see you go back to your country, but this adventure together has come to an end. We hope to see you again in our country, until then: Take care, we’ll miss you 😊.

Interested in this tour?

Some useful information

Estimated travel times

  • Havana’s Airport to accommodation: 30 minutes
  • Havana to Viñales (via Soroa and Las Terrazas): 4 hours
  • Havana to Varadero: 2 hours
  • Havana to Bay of Pigs: 2 hours
  • Bay of Pigs to Cienfuegos: 2 hours
  • Cienfuegos to Trinidad: 1 hours
  • Trinidad to Santa Clara: 2 hours
  • Santa Clara to Varadero: 2.5 hours
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Spending money on tour

Everyone spends money at different rates, and in addition to that, many of your major expenses such as accommodation, private transportation between destinations, airport transfers, entrance fees to activities, tour guide and two lunches are already included. You’ll just need enough money to cover the rest of your meals, drinks, tips and souvenirs.

If you are looking at the possibility of booking some extra activities you should bring some additional money for that too. Also, some souvenirs are more expensive than others, you might want to bring some nice cigars and rum back home, make sure you include those in your budget calculation as well.

All in all, we recommend bringing around 60 CUC per person per day. The CUC (Cuban Convertible Peso) is valued 1:1 with the US dollar (not taking into consideration exchange fees, which tipically take the exchange rate down to 87 cents of a CUC for each US dollar).

Accommodation on tour

This tour is priced to stay in Casa’s/ B&B’s. The Casa’s we have hand selected are not exactly as the standard Casa’s you will find in Cuba, we have chosen to partner with them because of their excellent, friendly and reliable service. They are run more like your traditional B&B’s but still offer a unique cultural experience. While they shouldn’t be compared to modern Western hotels, the rooms will have air-conditioning, private en suite facilities, hot and cold water and have generally been recently renovated to a beautiful standard. Location is another important factor; The Casa’s we use are always within walking distance of the city centers, which will give you easy access to restaurants, bars , museums, etc. 

Staying in cuba’s casas particulares is an ideal way to gain an insight into the country and its people.

Not sold on staying at a Casa?

That’s OK, we can certainly look to upgrade your accommodation to 4* or 5* properties, depending on your budget. It is worth noting some accommodation providers in Havana are to be found in older buildings without elevators. If you believe that your physical capabilities will make it difficult to climb stairs, simply let us know. We will be able to find you a suitable alternative.

Travel to Cuba from the U.S.

All of our Cuba Tours are dedicated to supporting the Cuban people, patronizing privately owned small businesses across Cuba. Your itinerary is compliant with current U.S. travel restrictions and is designed to introduce you to the local Cuban people and steer funds towards its citizens. On our Cuba Tours you will stay in Casa Particulares (privately run Cuban B&B’s) and eat at Paladares (privately run restaurants). You will also have the chance to interact with Cuban’s from all walks of life, listening to their stories, and sharing your own.

For those traveling to Cuba from the U.S. (regardless of nationality), please note that the documentation we will include with your booking (itinerary and receipt of deposit payment) ensures your compliance with current U.S. travel restrictions (515.574 Support for the Cuban People). In addition to retaining your itinerary, please keep records of your booking receipt, airline receipt, and any supplemental insurance purchased. You should retain these copies for 5 years after your travel. Some of our travelers have been asked to furnish these upon application for Global Entry, Pre-Check, and other programs with TSA oversight.

Select a date for your tour

You’ll find a list of the available dates for this particular group tour. Each date will have a different date depending on the level of availability as follows:
BLUE – Several spots are still available. Only two people required to guarantee departure.
GREEN – 100% Guaranteed departure.
ORANGE – Only a few spots are still available. Secure your spots now!
RED – The tour is fully booked for this date. No spots available.

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“We did a 7 day experience with Cuba 360 – Havana, Cienfuegos, Trinidad and Varadero. Engaged with Cubans throughout and learned tons. Cesar made it so outstanding, right down to learning how to make the very best mojito! Muchas muchas gracias and here’s to a positive future for the people of the US and Cuba!”

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“If I could give Cuba 360 more starts I would. These guys go far beyond to make sure you have the best trip. I’m from South Carolina and had a ton of questions about being an American. Cesar was always very quick to provide insight and answer any questions we had…”