Gain an understanding of Cuba’s history as you explore great cities of Havana, Trinidad, and Cienfuegos. Using the highly comfortable ship Panorama II as a base, explore some of the places on Cuba’s superb southern coast, including seldom-visited Isla de la Juventud (the Isle of Youth). Visit the Bay of Pigs, where exiles landed in 1961 in an attempt to overthrow the Cuban government, and also learn of its important natural history.

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Why We Love It

Connect with Cubans of all backgrounds on a unique people-to-people program

Use the highly comfortable sailing ship Panorama II as a base

Explore Cuba's unique marine habitat

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Day by day Itinerary

Cuba by Land and Sea

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Day 1

Havana

Arrive in Havana. This afternoon explore Old Havana on foot. (L)(D)

Day 2

Havana

A full program of people-to-people visits are lined up for these two days, with opportunities for you to choose among the programs that interest you most. On each of these visits, you will meet with Cubans who are making a difference in their fields. Enjoy several meals in some of Havana’s best paladares, or privately owned restaurants. And on one evening, hear the signature rhythms of Cuba at a music hall with the chance to meet the musicians. (B)(L)(D)

Day 3

Havana

See Day 2 for today's itinerary. (B)(L)(D)

Day 4

Havana - Cienfuegos

A final morning to explore Havana, with people-to-people visits. After lunch, drive to the city of Cienfuegos on Cuba’s south coast. In the late afternoon, embark Panorama II, home for the next seven nights, and enjoy a welcome dinner aboard the ship. (B)(L)(D)

Day 5

Bay of Pigs

This morning drive from Cienfuegos to the Bay of Pigs, an ecologically important area that became known worldwide when the 1961 US-backed invasion by Cuban exiles was rapidly and thoroughly defeated by the Cuban revolutionary government, whose forces were led by Fidel Castro. The bay lies along the Zapata Peninsula and the Zapata Swamp National Park. You’ll have a chance to explore the area in search of its renowned birdlife. Meet with experts who will tell you about the vitally important role the area plays in the area’s natural history. In the late afternoon, drive back to Cienfuegos and the ship. (B)(L)(D)

Day 6

Cayo Largo

This morning there is a people-to-people visit of the local clinic to discuss Cuba’s medical system with local doctors and nurses. You’ll visit a sea turtle breeding centre and endangered species protection program. In the afternoon have a chance to snorkel or, at additional cost, dive on the coral reef, in the company of environmental guides and scientists. (B)(L)(D)

Day 7

Trinidad

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Trinidad is a splendid and meticulously preserved colonial city, perhaps Cuba’s most beautiful. This morning walk through the town with a representative of the Office of the City Historian, interacting with residents along the way. There will be stops for visits to local artists, to home studios and to the Municipal Historical Museum, located in a restored mansion just off the main square. (B)(L)(D)

Day 8

Gardens of the Queen Marine Park

Gardens of the Queen Marine Park is one of the crown jewels of the Caribbean, a place of transcendent importance to the marine ecology of Cuba and the world. Its significance is well recognised by Cubans, who have extended protection to large areas of the waters and cays, and by naturalists worldwide. Its coral reefs are among the finest in the world, and you have two days to learn about this unique habitat, meeting with ecologists who are working to describe and preserve the ‘Gardens’. (B)(L)(D)

Day 9

Gardens on the Queen Marine Park

See Day 8 for today's itinerary. (B)(L)(D)

Day 10

Cienfuegos

In the early afternoon arrive in Cienfuegos. Visit the Graphic Arts Workshop for discussions and exchanges with local artists. You’ll have a people-to-people visit with musicians and singers, young and old, and enjoy a presentation and exchange with the internationally known, award-winning Cienfuegos Choir. Enjoy a farewell dinner aboard the ship. (B)(L)(D)

Day 11

Cienfuegos

Disembark this morning and transfer to either Cienfuegos or Santa Clara Airport for your onward flight. (B)

NOTE Visits to Bay of Pigs and Garden of Queens Marine Park are subject to permission from Cuban officials and this portion of the itinerary is subject to change.

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