Cuba's Natural Attractions

10 Days / 9 Nights

HIGHLIGHTS

This special round trip explores the “real Cuba” that many people are looking for. We slightly go off the traditional tourist routes to see the non-touristic side of the country. From the westernmost tip of the island in Pinar del Rio province, we will explore the beautiful landscapes, going through the central part of the country to the Escambray Mountains. The tour includes visits to the UNESCO world heritage sites of the Viñales Valley, Cienfuegos and Trinidad. Admire the unique microclimate of Soroa, visit Cuba’s largest Orchid farm, learn about Cuba's largest cave system, go bird-watching at the Bay of Pigs, visit a crocodile breeding farm at the Zapata Peninsula, go horse riding and jungle trekking in the Escambray Mountains and swim in a waterfall. The tour ends in Varadero where the All-inclusive hotel amenities will let you relax on this beautiful, white sandy beach. We suggest adding some more nights in Varadero to complete your Cuba experience!

100% TAILOR-MADE

Our itineraries are suggestions and are fully customisable according to your needs, interests and budget.

Treat these itineraries as inspiration and one of our experts will create your uniquely tailored holiday with your requests in mind so that you can truly experience Cuba with Seven Senses.

SUGGESTED ITINERARY

Day 1. Arrive Havana (-/-/-)

Arrive to Cuba in the afternoon. Meet & Greet at the airport and transfer to the hotel. Evening at leisure. 

Day 2. Old Havana (B/-/-)

After breakfast full day sightseeing tour of Havana, one of the most beautiful cities of Latin America. Havana captivates all its visitors. This true Caribbean metropolis has a unique atmosphere that makes tourists travel back in time to the Colonial era while appreciating the mark of the ‘50s US mob which coexist with the retro architecture, and the ambiance of the current socialist society. Start with a city tour of modern Havana, crossing Havana's famous seaside promenade, the Malecon, which is a favorite meeting place for locals. Admire the mansions of the Paseo avenue, and then stop at the Revolution Square where the Jose Marti Memorial is located. On the way back pass by the world-famous Colon cemetery, one of the world’s richest graveyards with more than 500 statues before arriving to the old town, known as “Habana Vieja”. Visit the Havana Club Rum Museum where we get acquainted with the making of the world-famous Cuban rum, the growing and processing steps of sugar cane to follow through the process until it has matured, barrel filling, bottling, and we close the visit with a tasting. Visitors can purchase original Havana Club memorabilia, and taste the typical Cuban drink called Guarapo made from fresh sugar cane and the excellent Cuban cocktail, Guarabana. Continue exploring the old part of the city on foot with its rich cultural and historical attractions, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1988. During the tour all those who are interested can hunt local antiques at the authentic antique market. Visit the Plaza de Armas (the "Arms’ Square"), the Governor's palace, and walk through the Plaza San Francisco with the old Stock Exchange Palace, the St. Francis of Assis Church and Cathedral Square. Then, visit La Plaza Vieja, the "Old Square" where our optional lunch will be served in a typical local restaurant. Finally, we shall visit the outdoor exhibition of the Revolutionary Museum, where the famous ship Granma is exhibited. We will be able to see the boat, in which Fidel and the other revolutionaries landed to start the revolution. In the afternoon return to the hotel. Evening free.

A visit to the famous Tropicana Show or the Concert of the Buena Vista Social Club is optional.

Day 3. Havana - Hemingway and Cigars (B/-/-)

After breakfast start exploring Havana in the footsteps of Hemingway and learn the art of making Cuban cigars. We start with a morning visit to a cigar factory in Havana where you will be able to observe and learn from local cigar rollers the making of the famous Cuban Habano. Visit the different departments of the factory and see the process from the beginning to the end. During the tour the secret of how to recognise a good cigar will also be explained. Then we will follow Hemingway’s footsteps in Havana: visit his house at Finca de la Vigia, where he spent his time while in Cuba. Visit the exhibition of his fishing boat: Pilar also. Then we visit the fishing port of Cojimar, an inspirational place for his fishing stories, as well as his famous novel: The Old Man and the Sea. After our optional lunch we also visit Hemingway’s favourite places such as: Hotel Ambos Mundos, La Bodeguita del Medio and La Floridita, where the world famous "Mojito" and "Daiquiri" cocktails began their journey of conquest. In the afternoon return to the hotel, evening free.

Day 4. Havana - Pinar del Rio (B/-/-)

After breakfast depart for the western part of the country, Pinar del Rio: the “green” province of Cuba. This province offers untouched nature, the superb natural beauty of the country. Its unique climate makes this land the most fertile on the island. It is one of the highlights of our tour; we spend two days touring the countryside and discovering the highlights of the area. On the way we will stop at Soroa also known as the “Rainbow of Cuba”, named after the “Salto de Arcoiris” waterfall that is located here. Visit the largest Orchid farm in Cuba that offers over 6000 plants and 700 different types of orchids - including some very rare types - on more than 25 hectares. Soroa offers a unique micro climate that makes “El Orchideario” florulent all year long. We continue to Pinar del Rio city, called the “City of columns” where we take a panoramic city tour. Later on leave for Viñales, a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1999, where the unique karst formations, the “Mogotes” can be found. Once there, we stop at the Mirador Los Jazmines, where you can enjoy the breathtaking panorama with the remote scenery of  "Mogotes" (karst hills) and mountains that make this place deservedly a World Heritage site. We will have optional lunch at a local restaurant. After lunch we start hiking in the “Cueva del Indio”, and boating inside the cave on an underground river observing the various stalactites that formed different shapes and therefore each has some story to tell. Finishing the day’s programme, visit the famous wall painting, the "Mural de la Prehistoria" that fascinates us with its unique technology and gigantic size. We continue our trip to our accommodation.

Day 5. Viñales Valley – Santo Tomas Cave (B/-/-)

After the previous day’s adventures wake up relaxed and head for more escapades. Today discover the Cuban country life and Viñales Valley. This area of the country has the best soil for tobacco, the best tobacco in the world is produced here. On the way stop at a tobacco plantation where you can explore the house of the tobacco farmers. They will show you around in the “Casa de Tabaco” and you will learn about the producing and processing of tobacco. Optional lunch at a typical Cuban restaurant. After lunch depart for the Gran Caverna de Santo Tomas cave, the largest cave system in Cuba, second largest on the American continent: it is 46 kms long and has 8 levels. We discover the part of the cave that is open to the public with a specialised guide on a 1 km path that is accessible for tourists. The specialty of the program is that local authorities give permission to visit the cave only to a very limited number of tourists. This allows the conservation of the cave system in its original state. In the afternoon return to your hotel in Viñales. Evening free. It is worth going to the village in the evening to meet locals and experience the unique Cuban hospitality.

Day 6. Viñales Valley – Montemar National Park – Guama – Bay of Pigs – Playa Larga (B/-/-)

Breakfast at the hotel and departure to one of Cuba's most important nature reserves, the world famous Zapata Peninsula, a bird and animal sanctuary which is located in the Montemar National Park. The largest swamp of Cuba is located here. It houses many endemic and migrant birds, among others the most emblematic Cuban birds, the Tocororo (Cuban trogon), the national bird of Cuba; the Bee Hummingbird, the world’s smallest bird; the Cuban Tody, which is small, but all the more colourful. In Cuba, crocodiles are indigenous; the Zapata swamp grants habitat for them. The first stop is Guama, the main attraction of the National Park. There we take a speedboat tour of the natural lagoon, the Laguna de Tresoro, where the untouched nature can be observed, and migrating and endemic birds can be seen. Then we will visit the Aldea Taino, the reconstructed Taino Aboriginal village where we learn about the customs of the ancient indigenous inhabitants. We get back to port and visit the country’s largest crocodile breeding farm, where we can observe hundreds of these reptiles in their natural habitat. Visit the crocodile nursery; where those who feel brave enough may hold the yet harmless infants in their hands. Optional lunch will be served at a local restaurant. In the afternoon we will arrive to the Bay of Pigs, where you will have some time on the beach. Check-in to the hotel. Evening free.

Day 7. Playa Larga – Zapata Peninsula – Cienfuegos – Trinidad/Ancón Peninsula (B/-/-)

After breakfast depart to the city of Cienfuegos, also known as the “Pearl of the South”. First we make a stop on the way for bird watching: the Montemar National Park has more than 900 plants and 160 bird species and 12 other animals in their natural habitat. A specialist ornithologist will lead the bird watching. With his help we will have a better chance to find these hiding birds. Then continue to Cienfuegos. Once we arrive, optional lunch will be served at a local restaurant. Later on we begin our sightseeing tour. The city was founded by French settlers in 1819. They started to call the city “The Pearl of the Caribbean”. Cienfuegos is a UNESCO World Heritage site since 2005, and the first, and an outstanding example of an architectural ensemble representing the new ideas of modernity, hygiene and order in urban planning as developed in Latin America from the 19th century. Walk by the famous Malecon, see the beautiful seaside villas. Stop to take pictures at the Palacio del Valle, a unique palace with architectural richness. It has Gothic influences, Romanesque, Baroque and Italianate combined with the Mudejar style of Spain from the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. The history of the building makes it even more special: the palace was built by Señor Celestino Caceres, one of the richest merchants of the city. He gave the palace to his love as a wedding gift in 1917. The rest of the story we will learn from our guide on site. Then we head towards downtown Cienfuegos, where we continue with a walking tour of the city of former aristocrats. Cienfuegos, founded by French settlers, has European-style architecture. We will walk down the Boulevard of the city via the Prado; visit the Jose Marti Square, the Governor's palace, the Thomas Terry Theater famous for its excellent acoustics, and the Cathedral. In the afternoon transfer to Trinidad. Our hotel is located on the Ancon Peninsula, 10 kilometres from the city. We will spend two nights here and we will discover the area from our all-inclusive resort to ensure that we can relax after the days' trips. Evening at leisure. We suggest exploring the centre of Trinidad in the evening for its' sizzling nightlife with authentic salsa parties.

Day 8. Trinidad/Ancon Peninsula – Escambray Mountains (B/-/-)

After breakfast we depart to the nearby Escambray Mountains on the platform of Russian army trucks and drive up to the 800 metres high peak: to Topes de Collantes. This high and abundant mountainous area was the hiding place of the counter-revolutionists in 1959 after the victory of the Cuban Revolution. The area is also famous for its flora and fauna and its continental divide feature. Its northern side is lush, rainy, with coffee plantations on the slopes; the southern side has a drier climate, with Agave plants and arid zones. The Topes de Collantes Nature Reserve was named after the mountain’s second highest peak. Fulgencio Batista constructed here the Kurhotel that still operates as a sanatorium. Once there, we start a 3 km jungle tour in the Guanayara National Park. Our trip is led by a specialist local guide who is an expert of the Cuban Flora and Fauna. During the trip we will get to know the local animals and plants: more than 40 types of orchids are endemic and more than 100 types of ferns are registered, 7 of them grow as high as 6 metres. Also visit a coffee plantation where you will learn about coffee production, the main types of coffee produced here: there are more than 40 types of coffee grown in the shades of pine and eucalyptus trees. Reach the “El Rocio” waterfall, where you can swim in the transparent mountain river. Keep your swimwear on you, as your next stop is the El Venado natural lagoon, where you can swim in the clear waters of the lagoon. Optional lunch at “Casa de Gallega” ranch. After lunch have a Caribbean siesta and afterwards return to the hotel. Evening free.

 

Day 9. Trinidad Old Town – Sugar Mills Valley – Varadero (B/-/-)

After breakfast visit Trinidad. The city was founded more than 500 years ago; Trinidad preserves the singular atmosphere of the colonial era. First we walk through the old part of the city. While walking along the small winding streets we have the feeling that we are going back in time. Visit the Plaza Mayor, The Tower of Contrabandido, the Cathedral, La Santissima Trinidad Square and the exhibition of the Romantic Museum. The museum is located in the palace of what used to be the town's richest family with balustrade yard, marble floors, and neoclassical decoration. Stop at the famous Canchanchara bar where you can sample the authentic drink of Trinidad, the special cocktail still made from the original recipe of Aguardiente and honey, called Canchanchara. Later we have our optional lunch in the centre of the city. After lunch visit the famous Valley of Sugar Mills that is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, once the centre of sugar production and processing in Cuba. The 270 sq km valley employed more than 30,000 slaves. A large part of the 18th century sugar consumption was produced here. The valley together with Trinidad was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988. Visit the Manaca Iznaga estate. It is possible to climb the seven-story tower that offers a beautiful panorama. The tower was used to keep an eye on the plantation and the slaves. Once the highest building in the country in its era, the tower offers beautiful views of the surrounding area. Continue to Varadero. Arrive in the evening, check in to your hotel. 

 

Day 10. Departure (B/-/-)

 

Enjoy a delicious breakfast at your hotel. When you are ready your driver will transfer you to Havana airport for your international departure flight or transfer to your chosen resort for your beach stay.

PRICES AND INCLUSIONS

10 DAYS / 9 NIGHTS FROM £2,229 per person + international flights

based on 2 people travelling together 

The price includes:

Accommodation 3 nights in Havana, 2 night in Viñales, 1 night in Playa Larga, 2 nights in Trinidad, 1 night in Varadero in private accommodation. Because of the lack of hotel capacity in the countryside, we cannot guarantee exact hotel or star rating in the countryside; the accommodation is in typical “tourist” class hotels/casa particular that can be changed according to capacity. The above package price includes accommodation in Casas Particulares (Private accomodation) during the entire program and 3* hotel in Varadero. Upgrade to 4 or 5 star hotels available. Breakfast is included in the program. Lunch and full board option can be booked separately. All transfers with air conditioned vehicle. Programme as per description, with entrance fees included. English/Spanish speaking local guide. Meet & Greet upon arrival at the airport. English/Spanish speaking 24-hour assistance during the entire tour. Hotels according to local ratings.

The price does not include:

 

Return flights from the UK to Cuba. Request a quote from us.

Tourist card (visa)

Anything not specifically mentioned above.

Optional tours, camera fees.

Tips to the guide and driver, porters and waiters.

Travel insurance.

Personal costs such as drinks, laundry, etc.

Peak season surcharges

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SEVEN SENSES TOURS IS A TRADING NAME OF BRS TRAVEL SOLUTIONS LIMITED REGISTERED IN ENGLAND. COMPANY NUMBER 10287236. REGISTERED ADDRESS: 19 CROSSFIELD ROAD, LONDON, N17 6AY, UNITED KINGDOM.

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