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The '7 days from Moscow to Novgorod and St. Petersburg' package  includes a visit to places like 'Moscow, Novgorod and St. Petersburg'.

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  Features 
 

 

  • First class hotels, rooms with private facilities
  • Service charges and hotel taxes
  • Breakfast daily, 1 lunch and 3 dinners
  • Airport transfers
  • Touring by modern motor-coach
  • Professional English speaking tour director
  • Luggage handling
  • Headsets will be provided for include sightseeing tours, so you can easily hear you guide’s commentary

 

 

 ITINERARY

 

Day 1, arrive Moscow, Friday
Upon arrival to Moscow, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. The rest of the day is to relax or perhaps begin your independent discovery
of the fabled capital of Russia. Tonight, a briefing by your Tour Director on the fascinating tour that awaits you, followed by a Welcome Dinner. (D)

Day 2, in Moscow, Saturday
Moscow, one of the largest cities in the world, is the symbolic heart and soul of the country. Your sightseeing tour begins at Red Square, dominated
by colorful St. Basil's Cathedral and by the massive red walls of the Kremlin. Visit the Armory Museum, with its impressive collection of Tsarist, Russian, and
foreign jewelry, armor, and other artifacts. Then walk by Moscow University. Continue with a drive along the wide boulevards and a stroll through
GUM, Russia’s largest department store. Continue, on the north bank of the River Moskva, passing by baroque Novodevichy convent; ending the tour at
the popular Arbat shopping district, time to shop or enjoy lunch on your own. The rest of the day is at leisure. (B)


Day 3, Sunday

Today we travel 75 km North of Moscow, to a small town of Sergiev Posad, former Zagorsk – founded in the 14th century and renowned as a center of
ancient Russian art and architecture. For centuries it served as a place of pilgrimage and the religious capital of Russia. Within the old walled city admire
the fairy-tale golden and blue domes of the Holy Trinity St. Sergius Lavra, one of the most beautiful of all monasteries. After lunch at a popular
restaurant, return to Moscow, the rest of the day at leisure. This evening take an Optional tour Moscow by night & Subway, to see the metro stations which
Stalin called “Palaces for the People.” (B, L)


Day 4 Moscow - St. Petersburg, Monday

Time at leisure in Moscow, before transfer to railway station for our four hours high speed Sapsan train ride to St. Petersburg. Upon arrival at the St.
Petersburg train station, transfer to your hotel. Dinner at hotel. (B, D)


Day 5 St. Petersburg, Tuesday

There are not many cities in the world that can match the grace of St. Petersburg. When Peter the Great founded the city in 1703, he hired Europe’s
best architects, craftsmen, and artists to build and decorate it. Spread over 100 islands and linked by over 600 bridges, it is often referred to as the
“Venice of the North.” Today the main sites to be visited on the tour are Palace Square with the Winter Palace, Senate Square with the monument to
Russian Emperor Peter the Great, the founder of the city, St. Isaac’s Square with St. Isaac’s Cathedral, Smolny Cathedral, Cruiser Aurora, Field of Mars, and
Nevsky Prospect. Granite embankments of the Neva River. Visit to Peter and Paul Fortress, built in 1703 on a small island it was meant to protect the city
from enemy attacks; and the first construction of St. Petersburg. Visit Peter and Paul Cathedral, which towers in the center of the fortress served as the
burial place for Russian Emperors from Peter I. It is a museum nowadays. The gilded spire of the Peter and Paul Cathedral is the highest landmark of the
city. Your evening is free or join an optional Russian Folklore evening or Evening Canal Cruise. (B)


Day 6 St. Petersburg, Wednesday

This morning you’ll make a highlight visit to the world-famous Hermitage, housing more than four million works of art. It ranks among one of the
largest and oldest museums of the world, founded in 1764 by Catherine the Great. Admire the world famous masterpieces by Leonardo da Vinci, Rafael,
Titian, Rembrandt, El Greco, Velasquez, Rubens, Van Dyck, Goya, and French Impressionists. The Hermitage occupies five buildings, the largest is the
Winter Palace, the former residence of Russian Emperors. Spend the rest of the day at leisure exploring the city on your own or perhaps you may
choose to take an optional tour to visit Catherine Palace & Park in Pushkin or to Petrodvorets, Peterhof Summer Palace of Peter the Great. Tonight
join your fellow travelers in a farewell dinner. (B, D)

 

Day 7 - Depart Thursday

After breakfast you will be transferred to the airport for your departure flight (B)

 

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Marriott Grand, Moscow, Russia

Address: 26/1 Tverskaya Street, 125009 Moscow

 

Information

In the heart of the city near Red Square, the Kremlin and the Bolshoi Theatre, the Moscow Marriott Grand Hotel is pure elegance. Our five-star hotel, located on Tverskaya Street, is known for impeccable service and event facilities. Our spacious rooms and suites feature wonderful amenities, including a safe, individual climate control and wireless high-speed Internet access. Stay fit in our exclusive Health Club & Fitness Center featuring state-of-the-art equipment, and unwind in our indoor pool and sauna. Russkiy Pogrebok features authentic Russian cuisine and our 2 other restaurants offer delightful international fare. Between meals, enjoy a cocktail at the Lobby Bar or read your newspaper by the fountain. When planning a special event, the Moscow Marriott Grand Hotel meets all expectations. We provide 855 sq meters of event space with gourmet catering services and our Grand Ballroom accommodates up to 300 guests. At the Moscow Marriott Grand Hotel, our well trained and friendly staff welcomes you.

 

Holiday Inn, Saint Petersburg, Russia

Address: Moskovsky PR. 97A, 196084, Saint Petersburg,

 

Information

The Holiday Inn St. Petersburg-Moskovskye Vorota in Russia is a brand new hotel and conference centre perfectly situated in the central part of the city, on Moskovsky Prospect connecting the city centre with Pulkovo airport. With the Moskovskye Vorota metro station across the road, the hotel is only 4 stops from all major attractions: the Hermitage, St Isaac's Cathedral, Church on Spilled Blood, the Russian Museum, the Peter & Paul Fortress and the Mariinsky theatre. The hotel is approx. 20 min. by taxi from the Pulkovo Airport and also 20 min. by metro from the Moskovsky Railway Station. Downtown businesses are minutes by car while others are just within a short drive! The Holiday Inn St. Petersburg-Moskovskye Vorota hotel has 557 spacious Standard, Executive, Deluxe rooms and Suites. All rooms come with great beds, an in-room safe and high-speed internet access. The Congress Hall holds capacity for up to 1000 people. The Hotel also offers offers 13 Conference Rooms and 2 Banquet Rooms ideal for any type of event! On-site Restaurants & Bars include: Steak House Korova and Rodchenko Restaurant, Chernikov Lounge Bar, Rodchenko Coctail Bar and Tatlin Lobby Bar. The Holiday Inn St. Petersburg-Moskovskye Vorota hotel offers Business Centre services and free for guest Fitness. In case you come by car, the hotel provides parking!

 

 

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Say Hello to Havana on this 4 day People to People program highlighting Havana's allure, history, culture and cuisine. 

Tour Hemmingway's trail, experience El Canonazo ceremony and enjoy Havana's top evening event, El Cabaret Parisienne at Hotel Nacional. Deluxe hotel accommodations in Havana snd top guides make for a comfortable and educational experience.

 

 

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  Features 
 

  • Deluxe hotel in Havana with buffet breakfast daily
  • 6 meals: 3 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches and 1 Dinner
  • Comprehensive city tour of Old Havana including the Museo de Bellas Artes and a Mojito cocktail at La Bodeguita del Medio 
  • Lectures and briefings  
  • Cabaret Show at Hotel Nacional
  • All escorted guided tours and visits including admission fees throughout
  • All transportation within Cuba
  • Government Hotel Taxes
  • Services of SLT local representatives throughout Trip Interruption Insurance is required 

Notes:

* Min 2 to operate
* Charter flights tickets (not included) cost  $500 to $700 based on seasonality.
* Air tickets include visa fee and airport Tax. Call 1800-7837839 for availability and rate.

PAYMENTS & CANCELLATIONS:

  • Deposit of $500 per person non refundable
  • Final payment due 90 days prior departure
  • Cancellation within 90-60 50% penalty
  • 0-60 days prior trip date 100% penalty

Rate $1299 apply for these dates: May 1 - July 14, 2016

 

 

 

 

 ITINERARY

 

Day 1 US- HAVANA
Arrive to Terminal 2 at Jose Marti International Airport in Havana.
After customs our guide will meet you.
Havana Panoramic Drive into 5th Avenue and Old City along the Malecon to your first experience in Cuba.
Welcome cocktail and People-to-People presentation for your itinerary, commitments and expectations Lodging and dinner at hotel.

Day 2 OLD HAVANA UNESCO World Heritage Site
Breakfast
Old Havana Tour. The Havana, a sprawling metropolis of 2 million inhabitants. Founded in 1519 Old Havana by the 18th century was the most important port of the region. Old Havana defined by the extend of the city walls retains an interesting mix of Baroque and Neoclassical monuments, and an ensemble of private houses with arcades, balconies, wroughtiron gates with internal courtyards. Walk thru Old Havana and visit El Templete, where the City of Havana was founded in 1514, the Office of the City Historian and many historical Spanish plazas including the Plaza de Armas, Plaza Vieja and Plaza San Francisco. 
Lunch serve at Restaurant “TEMPLETE”. Continue to Havana's Museo de Bellas Artes and walk the famous Central Park where local Cubans discuss their favorite pastime "Baseball”, the Bacardi Building, famous for its Art Deco architecture, Cathedral Square and “La Bodeguita del Medio Bar-Restaurant”, Hemingway’s favorite to enjoy a Mojito Cocktail, (included for you).
At night, visit to La Cabaña fortress for the Ceremony of Cannon.

Day 3 HAVANA & THE ERNEST HEMIWAY’S TRAIL
Breakfast.
Morning departure to “Finca La Vigia” former home of Ernest Hemingway where he wrote many of his novels.
A visit to Alamar Community to meet the local leaders to discuss the historic “Micro
Brigades”, organized in 1965 by local residents to build their own housing.
Continue to Cojimar where Hemingway keep his boat “Pilar”, and embarked on daily fishing trips to the Caribbean and found inspiration for his novel, “The Old Man and the Sea”. Lunch at “LAS TERRAZAS”, his preferred restaurant where Hemingway sat for lunch, after fishing on the “Pilar”. Continue to the monument honoring Hemingway built by local fisherman with their boat anchors.
On our return to Havana, visit “El Castillo del Morro”, (Morro Castle) and “Fort La Cabana”. The tour continues with a walk up Obispo Street and a stop at the Ambos Mundos Hotel and the room, now a museum, where Ernest Hemingway wrote his famous novel “For Whom the Bell Tolls”.
The walk continues through Havana’s former banking district and on to “El Floridita”,
Hemingway’s favorite bar for his favorite trademark drink, the “Rum Daiquiri”, (included for you).
Tonight the SHOW CABARET at the Hotel Nacional

Day 4 HAVANA- US
Transfer to Havana airport for your departure flight to the U.S.

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REQUIREMENTS:

 

  • The "Cuba For Your Senses" program requires walking on cobblestone streets and uneven pathways, climbing stairs, and most importantly participating in a full-time schedule of people-to-people activities.
  • Due to the special requirements to visit Cuba, participants will be required to complete visa application and travel reservation forms and sign an affidavit confirming that they are traveling under a people-to-people license and are aware of the travel rules. Participants are also required to send a copy of their passport photo page. 
  • This educational people to people Cuba tour is operated under Sunny Land Tours Cuba Travel License Case #20CT-2015-317165-1

Trip Interruption Insurance is required

Note:

* Tour participants must observe Strict compliance to the itinerary schedule.
* Tour Operates with min 2
* Travel Insurance required to enter Cuba
* Visa will be provided with Airline Tickets

REGISTRATION FORM

 

USEFUL TIPS:

WHAT TO BRING- as some of these items may be more difficult to purchase while there

 

-Bug Spray

-Sunscreen and Sun Hats

-Comfortable Clothing, Walking Shoes (casual attire)

-Medications and OTC drugs, band-aids, etc

-CASH (CC’s and ATM’s don’t work)

-Sunglasses

-Hand sanitizer

 

PLEASE REFER TO CUBAN CUSTOMS policies for allowances, restrictions and limitations: www.aduana.co.cu.

 

MONEY

-2 Currencies: there are two types of currencies in Cuba.  The first is the Cuban Peso, used primarily by the locals for basic staples.  The second is the CUC (Cuban Convertible Peso), which is the currency mostly used by tourists.  It is important to make sure you are getting back the right change in the right currency when making purchases.

 

–Exchange:  You can exchange USD for CUC at any airport, hotel, exchange bureau in town centers and some banks.  The current fee for exchanging is 13%, i.e. for 100 USD you will get 87 CUC.  The fee is the same no matter where you exchange your currency. You will need your passport to exchange money.   In Cuba, they will not accept bills that are torn or written on when exchanging into CUC. When exchanging money into CUC , try to get small denominations to make purchases easier ,as many places(little stores, bars and restaurants do not always have the possibility to break down smaller notes for you).

 

–Credit Cards & Traveler’s Checks: US-issued credit cards, debit cards, and ATM cards do not work in Cuba.  Only credit cards issued in other countries may be issued (other than US).  You must have cash in order to make any purchases in Cuba or pay for any services.  Most places will not take USD, so you must exchange currency upon arriving.  Tips however can be given in any currency.  Traveler’s Checks may also be difficult to cash while in Cuba.

 

–Tips – tipping is a way of life in Cuba.  It is common to tip people in all walks of life if they do something special for you.  In addition, as in all destinations, restaurant staff, housekeepers, porters, taxi drivers, concierge, and others in the hospitality industry.

 

We recommend  having around 500 Pesos ($20) daily for tipping and incidental items you may find  in smaller shops; local Restaurants or street vendors as you interact with local people

 

CALLS AND INTERNET

-Cell Phones: US cell phones do not work in Cuba, even if you have an international plan.

 

–Calling Home: It is possible to call home from your hotel by visiting the business center or dialing direct from your room.  If you wish to use the phone in your room, you will need to leave a cash-deposit at the front desk, so that they activate your line.  It can be expensive to call home, sometimes more than 2.50 CUC per minute, and connection charges may also apply. You can also purchase local calling cards to use at pay phones or land lines.

 

-Internet: Wi-Fi is not available throughout Cuba except at some hotels. Most hotels also have a business center with computer, with limited hours, where internet service is available. Charges can up to 12 CUC per hour depending on the hotel.  Because of the limited technology in Cuba, it is not uncommon to have internet outages.

 

–Communication with the US: Though internet is the best way to communicate with family back at home, you may want to warn them of the difficulty in communications between Cuba and the US.  Not only can it be costly, but sometimes business centers are not open at the hours that are convenient to your schedule, internet may be experiencing difficulties, or you may have problems getting a line to the US from Cuba, since they are often rerouted through third countries.

 

ELECTRICITY

–Electric Current: 220 V at most hotels, though it is common to find both 110 and 220 throughout Cuba.  Sometimes both European and American plugs can be used.  It is advisable to bring a converter, if your electronics are not travel-ready (105-240 V).

 

–Outages: In Cuba it is possible to experience temporary power outages due to limited resources on the island.  Though this seems to be happening less frequently in the past few years.

 

SAFETY

-Safety Deposit Boxes: Hotels are equipped with safety deposit boxes and may charge a per day fee.  Check with the front desk.  It is advisable to leave valuables, including passports in the safe.  A copy of the passport should suffice for ID purposes.  You will however need your passport for exchanging of currency.

 

–Pick-pockets: though Cuba is generally a very safe place to travel (more than other parts of the world), it is always best to watch your belongings and beware of pick-pockets and purse snatchers. Leave expensive jewelry in the safe and only carry what you need for that day. You may see some kids or older adults begging on the streets, sometimes asking for soap, pens, etc.  Though a nuisance, this is not considered to be dangerous
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Optional A $300 with an extra night BB 

HAVANA CITY TOUR

Pick up at your Hotel: Visit to the Morro.  Visit to Colonial Havana, declared by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage Site. Walking tour of the old town, with its squares, fortresses and buildings constructed by the Spaniards’ between the Sixteenth and Nineteenth Century.  Opportunities for purchasing local crafts.  By Transport you will have a visit to La Bodeguita del Medio, and main streets and avenues in Old Havana with a stop at the Capitol. Liquid lunch in a restaurant in the area. Continue the tour with a panoramic view of the University of La Habana with a stop at the Revolution Square; time for pictures. Back to your Hotel.

Optional B: $400 with an extra night BB First Class Hotel

TRIP TO VINALES

Pick-up at your Hotel: Departure to Pinar del Rio.  Here we will visit the Rum Factory, ‘Guayabita del Pinar’.  Then we proceed through the Valley of Vinales, known as a National Cultural Monument, and, declared and protected by Unesco as  a World Culture Passage.  We will visit the House of Veguero for a Welcome Coctail and where you will see and appreciate cultivated tobacco plantations.  Next we stop at ‘Jasmine Point’, a viewpoint that offers a beautiful general view of the Vinales Valley.  From here you will visit the Indian Cave by boat ride on a river that flows to the interior.  Lunch at a restaurant in the area. Next a visit to a Prehistoric Mural depicting the  process of life’s Evolucion in the Mountains of the Organos, from Mollusk through to the first indigenous inhabitants of the area.  Return to your Hotel.

Optional C: $1200 pp with 2 extra nights in VARADERO and all meals.

Day 1 HAVANA. MATANUS- VARADERO
After breakfast drive to the picturesque city of Matanzas situated along Matanzas Bay. The old city buildings are mostly from XVIII and XIX centuries, while in other areas buildings are modern. The first stop will be the visit to the Pharmaceutical Museum National Monument , a French Drug store from XIX Century, it is the only one that remains in the world, and it preserves the original tools, instruments, furniture and building along the Matanzas. Bay continue to the Varadero Peninsula for check in at your selected hotel.. Overnight Varadero. All Inclusive Hotel Los Aredas Joradas.

Day 2 CARDENAS SUGAR & LOCOMOTIVE MUSEUM-VARADERO
After breakfast a short drive will take us to the City of Cardenas. Today we learn about the second railway station built in Cuba and the museum of the Sugar Industry & Steam Locomotives used in the sugar cane transportation. Experience with the local engineer a short ride on one of those ancient engines (12 pax minimum) Return for lunch at the hotel.
Afternoon visit the City of Varadero a tourist resort town, boasting more than 20 km of white sandy beaches. The first tourists visited Varadero as early as the 1870s, and for years it was considered an elite resort. In 1910 the annual rowing regatta was started,  five years later the first hotel, named Varadero and later Club Nautico. Tourism grew in the early 1930s as Irénée du Pont Nemours, an American millionaire, built his estate on the peninsula for a visit". Continue to Museo Municipal " for a lecture presentation by the Museum Curator. Visit "Taller de Ceråmica Artistica" to meet with local Cuban potters and learn about their great artworks of high quality  to bring back home. We will visit some private business in Varadero  where the "Cuentapropista" or Entrepreneurs are growing fast. Overnight Varadero. All meals Included.

Day 3 VARADERO- HAVANA-U.S.
After  Breakfast Transfer to the International Airport Jose Marti in Havana to board your flight departing to the US.

All prices shown are per person based on double occupancy.

Single occupancy supplement add $100 to Option A or B and $200 to Option C.
Minimum 2 travellers required to operate this tour.

 

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Join this 8 day exploratory tour of Cuba. This Cuba for Your Senses people to people program is packed with unique experiences! Throughout the tour, special presentations give a unique real perspective of today's Cuba as well as its past. Travel from Havana to Pinar del Rio and the fertile grounds of Vinales valley before ending in beautiful Varadero. A combination of modest hotels in Havana and Varadero paired with guest house lodging in the countryside make for an authentic and sustainable experience.

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  Features 
 

Package Includes:

 

  • First class hotel Roc Presidente in Havana with buffet breakfast daily 
  • Bed and Breakfast lodge and all meals in Vinales     
  • Roc Arenas Doradas or similar in Varadero
  • 18 meals: 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 5 dinners  
  • Comprehensive city tour of Old Havana including the Museo de Bellas Artes and a Mojito cocktail at La Bodeguita del Medio 
  • Lectures and briefings  
  • All escorted guided tours and visits including admission fees throughout
  • All transportation within Cuba
  • Government Hotel Taxes
  • Services of SLT local representatives throughout Trip Interruption Insurance is required 

    Notes
    * Charter flights tickets (not included) cost  $500 to $700 based on seasonality.
    * Air tickets include visa fee and airport Tax.

 

 ITINERARY

 

DAY 1 - U.S.A. / HAVANA, CUBA
Arrive to Terminal 2 at Jose Marti International Airport in Havana. After customs our local representative CUBATUR SUNNY LAND TOURS welcome you to Cuba. We begin with a panoramic drive in Havana to 5th Avenue and The Old City along the Malecon where the U.S. Embassy is located for a stop before we continue for your first taste of Cuba's traditional cuisine and culture at the Algibe Restaurant.  After lunch we will explore the classic cars of Cuba where members of A LO CUBANO CAR CLUB present their restored beauties. Sit back and relax while you enjoy a cool ride!  Later, we transfer to our selected hotel for check in.
After settling in, meet in the lobby for a Welcome cocktail and People-to-People presentation which provides an overview of your itinerary, and your participation commitments a
with Msc. Eliodoro Hernandez , a graduate from the University of Havana. Enjoy a discussion based presentation on the economic situation in Cuba and the central bank's exchange rate. Dinner at the hotel.  Overnight Havana Roc Presidente Hotel Meals LD

DAY 2 - OLD HAVANA UNESCO World Heritage Site  
After breakfast, we are off to explore  this sprawling metropolis of 2 million inhabitants. Founded in 1519  Old Havana, by the 18th century, was the most important port of the region. Old Havana, whose walls define it's boundaries, retains an interesting mix of Baroque and Neoclassical monuments and an ensemble of private houses adorned with balconies, wrought-iron gates and internal courtyards.  We will visit the Univesrity of Havana and stop at La Copelia Ice Cream Parlor before we begin our walk through Old Havana making our way to El Template. It is here where the City of Havana was founded in 1514. Nearby we'll encounter the Office of the City Historian and many historical Spanish plazas including the Plaza de Armas, Plaza Vieja and Plaza San Francisco. Lunch serve at Restaurant Templete. Continue to Havana's "Museo de Bellas Artes" and walk the famous Central Park where local Cubans discuss their favorite pastime, Baseball! You'll see the Bacardi Building, famous for its Art Deco architecture, Cathedral Square and La Bodeguita del Medio Bar-Restaurant, Hemingway's favorite stop for a Mojito Cocktail.  (Mojito Cocktail included). Tonight at 9 PM, enjoy the ceremonial firing of the canon at El Canonazo. The world's longest cigar is on display in the fort's gift shop. Return to our hotel in Havana, Roc Presidente Meals BL


DAY 3 - HAVANA  & THE ERNEST HEMINGWAY'S TRAIL
After breakfast, it's all about Hemingway! We visit Finca La Vigia former home of Ernest Hemingway where he wrote many of his novels. A visit to Alamar Community to meet the local leaders and discuss the historic Micro Brigades, organized in 1965  by local residents to build their own housing. Continue  to Cojimar where Hemingway kept his boat Pilar, for daily fishing trips in the Caribbean where he found inspiration for his novel, The Old Man and the Sea. Lunch at Las Terrazas, Hemingway's preferred restaurant where he frequently sat for lunch after fishing on the Pilar. Continue to the monument honoring Hemingway built by local fisherman with their boat anchors.  On our return to Havana, visit El Castillo del Morro, and Fort La Cabana. The tour continues with a walk up Obispo Street and a stop at the Ambos Mundos Hotel and the room, now a museum, where Ernest Hemingway wrote his famous novel, For Whom the Bell Tolls. The walk continues through Havana's former banking district and on to famous El Floridita, Hemingway's favorite bar for his trademark drink, the Rum Daiquiri (Daiquiri included). Overnight Havana Roc Presidente Hotel Meals BL

DAY 4 - EL PARAISO FARM and VINALES VALLEY

After breakfast, depart Havana towards the Province of Pinar del Rio.  The main highway goes along the Sierra and the beautiful landscape is quite stunning. On the way, we will visit the largest Maritime Port of Cuba, Marielos Port, to learn about the impact in Import and Export of goods. Continue to EL PARAISO AGROECOLOGICAL FARM to celebrate the local gastronomy with a traditional Cuban lunch.  This organic family run farm initiative offers a combination of innovation and family tradition. The farm is terraced producing organic vegetables. Located along the hillside over looking Vinales Valley, this is a privately owned family farm, organized with others like it in a credit and service cooperative. Your hosts will share their experiences about the farm, entrepreneurial opportunities and challenges in starting a local business in this rural community.  Mr.  Norges Perez Santos, Government Representative in Pinar del Rio for Tourism Development, will explain with firsthand visits to new local private enterprises. This is a great opportunity to share with the locals their experiences. Drive to the Vinalles Valley National Park  UNESCO World Landscape Heritage Site and an important tourist attraction with spectacular limestone Mogotes rising 900 feet above surrounding farmland. There are numerous caves scattered on the slopes inhabited for many centuries before the arrival of the Spanish conquerors.  We being our exploration of the cave formations of Cueva del Indio by boat. Next, we stop at the Prehistory Mural Project  before we arrive to our guesthouse lodging in Vinales. Check in to Casa de Hospedae where you will learn about this new literally "home grown" form of tourism business in Cuba offering a great opportunity for the locals.  Casa de Hospedaje for  overnight.  Meals BLD

DAY 5 - PINAR DEL RIO TOBACCO'S MASTERS HERITAGE 
Today we drive to San Juan Martinez in Pinar del Rio.  If you've ever wondered where the world's finest cigars start out, it's here in the lovingly cultivated tobacco plantations of Cuba's Pinar del Río province. The plantations and landscape are part of the area's magical sense. We will follow Tobacco Road and have the unique experience to meet with the Tobacco Masters to learn how the world's best tobacco is cultivated into the finest cigars. Learn about the main markets for exporting these unique cigars. Visit the tobacco plantation to meet and discuss with Hector Luis Prieto, the youngest  to hold the prestigious Governmental award, Hombre Habano de Cuba, in 2007 and noted as Cuba's Cigar Man for the quality of tobacco he grows in Finca Quemado de Rubi, San Juan and Martinez in Pinar del Rio. Learn about important changes in the tobacco industry in Cuba and  the role this industry has in economy of the local community.  Continue to  Pinar del Rio's City Central Quarter to learn about the history of this quaint town and to visit Guabina Cuban Pinto Horse Ranch and Farm for a Cuban Creol inspired lunch. After lunch enjoy a presentation by the General Manager about the ranch and farms activities. Next, we will visit a local public clinic for health services in the City of Pinar del Rio and learn about health care in this region.  
Overnight at Casa de Hospedaje.  Meals BLD

DAY 6 - PINAR DEL RIO- MATANZAS - VARADERO
After breakfast  drive to Varadero witha a stop for presentation of MARDIDAJE of Tobacco & Cuban Rum. Our lunch at 1830 Restaurant  by the ocean side in the exclusive Vedado Neighborhood . To enjoy the taste of fresh fish or shrimp and also see how the Tobacco comes to the City in the shape of a Cigar and matches with an aromatic  glass of Cuban Rum ( Maridaje, a ceremony conducted by an specialist , that will explain everything regarding the way cigars should be lit and smoked, combined with Rum at the end of any Gourmet meal in Cuba) a tradition in Cuba. After lunch continue driving  to the picturesque city of Matanzas situated along Matanzas Bay. The old city buildings are mostly from XVIII and XIX centuries, while in other areas buildings are modern. The first stop will be the visit to the Pharmaceutical Museum National Monument , a French drug store from XIX century, it is the only one that remains in the world, and it preserves the original tools, instruments, furniture and building along the Matanzas Bay continue to the Varadero Peninsula for check in at Roc Arenas Doradas Hotel. Hotel Overnight Varadero. Meals BLD

DAY 7 - CARDENAS SUGAR & LOCOMOTIVE MUSEUM -VARADERO
After breakfast a short drive will take us to the City of Cardenas a very important Sugar Cane center in Cuba.  We'll learn about the second railway station built in Cuba and the museum of the sugar industry  & steam  locomotives used in the transportation of sugar cane. Take a short ride with the  local engineer on one of those ancient engines and learn how they are still in use and maintained. Return for lunch at the hotel. Afternoon visit the  City of Varadero, Cuba's foremost tourist resort town, boasting more than 20 km of white sandy beaches. The first tourists visited Varadero as early as the 1870s, and for years it was considered an elite resort. In 1910 the annual rowing regatta was started and five years later the first hotel, named Varadero and later Club Nautico, was built. Tourism grew in the early 1930s as Irénée du Pont Nemours, an American millionaire, built his estate on the peninsula.  Continue to Museo Municipal for a presentation by the Museum curator.  Visit "Taller de Cerámica Artística" to meet with local Cuban potters and learn about their great artworks. All art works are of high quality and perfect to bring back home.  We end our days visit in the private business district in Varadero said to be home to the largest growing number of entrepeneurs in the country. Overnight Roc Arenas Doradas in Varadero. Meals BLD

DAY 8 - VARADERO- HAVANA-U.S.
Today we drive to the International Airport Jose Marti in Havana in time for your departure flight  to the U.S. Meals B

Sequence of visits may be subject to change

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Roc Presidente  Hotel

 

The Roc Presidente Hotel is one of our most special hotels: a hotel in the centre of La Habana, Cuba, 200 metres away from its famous pier and built in the once tallest building of the capital, with Cuban colonial inspiration and historical pieces of art in its interiors. Located only 3 kilometres away from La Habana Vieja, the Hotel Roc Presidente combines elegance and comfort at the heart of Cuba. Almost every room offers Sea Views and features, in addition, swimming pool, solarium, terrace cafeteria, parking… Immerse yourself in the real essence of Cuba

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Casa particular

Casa Particular (Spanish for "private house"; plural casas particulares) is a phrase meaning private accommodation or private homestays in Cuba, very similar to bed and breakfast although it can also take the form of vacation rental. When the meaning is clear the term is often shortened to simply casa.

The Roc Arenas Doradas Hotel

Is one of our best equipped All Inclusive resorts in Varadero, Cuba. It offers all type of 4-star services to families who want to enjoy the Caribbean to the maximum and it features special areas for children, youngsters and adults. The Roc Arenas Doradas Hotel is located at the beachfront of Los Taínos, and it stands out for its magnificent architecture: it is a hotel in Varadero overlooking the sea, with tropical gardens along the beach and rooms and suites with stunning views.

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PAYMENTS & CANCELLATIONS:

    Deposit of $500 per person non refundable
    Final payment due 90 days prior departure
    Cancellation within 90-60 50% penalty
    0-60 days prior trip date 100% penalty
    Travel insurance is mandatory and trip cancellation insurance is highly recommended.

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REQUIREMENTS:

 

  • The "Cuba For Your Senses" program requires walking on cobblestone streets and uneven pathways, climbing stairs, and most importantly participating in a full-time schedule of people-to-people activities and includes several nights countryside home hosting at what is referred to as a Casa De Hospedaje
  • Due to the special requirements to visit Cuba, participants will be required to complete visa application and travel reservation forms and sign an affidavit confirming that they are traveling under a people-to-people license and are aware of the travel rules. Participants are also required to send a copy of their passport photo page. 
  • This educational people to people Cuba tour is operated under Sunny Land Tours Cuba Travel License Case #20CT-2015-317165-1.  
    * Tour participants must observe Strict compliance to the itinerary schedule.
    * Tour Operates with min 2
    * Travel Insurance required to enter Cuba
    * Visa will be provided with Airline Tickets (airfare sold seperately)
     

Trip Interruption Insurance is required

 

USEFUL TIPS:

WHAT TO BRING- as some of these items may be more difficult to purchase while there

 

-Bug Spray

-Sunscreen and Sun Hats

-Comfortable Clothing, Walking Shoes (casual attire)

-Medications and OTC drugs, band-aids, etc

-CASH (CC?s and ATM?s don?t work)

-Sunglasses

-Hand sanitizer

 

PLEASE REFER TO CUBAN CUSTOMS policies for allowances, restrictions and limitations: www.aduana.co.cu.

 

MONEY

-2 Currencies: there are two types of currencies in Cuba.  The first is the Cuban Peso, used primarily by the locals for basic staples.  The second is the CUC (Cuban Convertible Peso), which is the currency mostly used by tourists.  It is important to make sure you are getting back the right change in the right currency when making purchases.

 

-Exchange:  You can exchange USD for CUC at any airport, hotel, exchange bureau in town centers and some banks.  The current fee for exchanging is 13%, i.e. for 100 USD you will get 87 CUC.  The fee is the same no matter where you exchange your currency. You will need your passport to exchange money.   In Cuba, they will not accept bills that are torn or written on when exchanging into CUC. When exchanging money into CUC , try to get small denominations to make purchases easier ,as many places(little stores, bars and restaurants do not always have the possibility to break down smaller notes for you).

 

-Credit Cards & Traveler?s Checks: US-issued credit cards, debit cards, and ATM cards do not work in Cuba.  Only credit cards issued in other countries may be issued (other than US).  You must have cash in order to make any purchases in Cuba or pay for any services.  Most places will not take USD, so you must exchange currency upon arriving.  Tips however can be given in any currency.  Traveler?s Checks may also be difficult to cash while in Cuba.

 

-Tips:  tipping is a way of life in Cuba.  It is common to tip people in all walks of life if they do something special for you.  In addition, as in all destinations, restaurant staff, housekeepers, porters, taxi drivers, concierge, and others in the hospitality industry.

 

We recommend  having around 500 Pesos ($20) daily for tipping and incidental items you may find  in smaller shops; local Restaurants or street vendors as you interact with local people

 

CALLS AND INTERNET

-Cell Phones: US cell phones do not work in Cuba, even if you have an international plan.

 

-Calling Home: It is possible to call home from your hotel by visiting the business center or dialing direct from your room.  If you wish to use the phone in your room, you will need to leave a cash-deposit at the front desk, so that they activate your line.  It can be expensive to call home, sometimes more than 2.50 CUC per minute, and connection charges may also apply. You can also purchase local calling cards to use at pay phones or land lines.

 

-Internet: Wi-Fi is not available throughout Cuba except at some hotels. Most hotels also have a business center with computer, with limited hours, where internet service is available. Charges can up to 12 CUC per hour depending on the hotel.  Because of the limited technology in Cuba, it is not uncommon to have internet outages.

 

-Communication with the US: Though internet is the best way to communicate with family back at home, you may want to warn them of the difficulty in communications between Cuba and the US.  Not only can it be costly, but sometimes business centers are not open at the hours that are convenient to your schedule, internet may be experiencing difficulties, or you may have problems getting a line to the US from Cuba, since they are often rerouted through third countries.

 

ELECTRICITY

-Electric Current: 220 V at most hotels, though it is common to find both 110 and 220 throughout Cuba.  Sometimes both European and American plugs can be used.  It is advisable to bring a converter, if your electronics are not travel-ready (105-240 V).

 

-Outages: In Cuba it is possible to experience temporary power outages due to limited resources on the island.  Though this seems to be happening less frequently in the past few years.

 

SAFETY

-Safety Deposit Boxes: Hotels are equipped with safety deposit boxes and may charge a per day fee.  Check with the front desk.  It is advisable to leave valuables, including passports in the safe.  A copy of the passport should suffice for ID purposes.  You will however need your passport for exchanging of currency.

 

-Pick-pockets: though Cuba is generally a very safe place to travel (more than other parts of the world), it is always best to watch your belongings and beware of pick-pockets and purse snatchers. Leave expensive jewelry in the safe and only carry what you need for that day. You may see some kids or older adults begging on the streets, sometimes asking for soap, pens, etc.  Though a nuisance, this is not considered to be dangerous

 

 

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