Western Cuba offers some of the country’s most impressive architecture, stunning landscapes and fascinating cultural icons. And it also boasts the island’s best tourist infrastructure. So, you don’t need to sacrifice creature comforts while cruising Cuba’s highlights. You’ll discover the contrasting UNESCO World Heritage-listed cities of Havana and Trinidad. One contains a frenetic energy and the other a sleepy pace that echoes another time. Then head to the Western part of the island for a glimpse of rural life. La Bella Cuba showcases some of our favourite Cuban destinations.
Arrive Havana Airport & transfer to your hotel located in the historic centre. Havana is a fascinating city, from the faded Spanish architecture and cobblestone streets of Old Havana (UNESCO World Heritage Site) to its now famous collection of 1950’s Chevies and Buicks that rumble past to the hum of the Salsa and its bars and cocktails made famous by the likes of Ernest Hemingway. With its magnificent museums and colourful past, Havana offers a wealth of sights and sounds that capture the very essence of Cuba.
After breakfast your local guide will meet you at your hotel and take you on a walking tour of Old Havana. Your first stop will be at a cigar factory (a chance to sample the local produce!). Continue on through the cobblestone streets of Old Havana where you can enjoy the live ‘theatre’ of La Habana Vieja – offering you a fascinating viewing of this wonderful city’s historical and cultural value.
This morning you will tour modern Havana by vintage car, including the impressive Revolution Square overlooked by the mural of Ernesto “Che” Guevara and the famous “Malecon” Havana’s seafront promenade.
A morning drive to Cienfuegos also referred to as The Pearl of the Caribbean. The provincial city of Cienfuegos was founded in 1819 with the name of Villa Fernandina de Jagua. Located in the south center of the island, it is one of the youngest and most beautiful cities of Cuba. The streets are lined with mansions well past their belle epoch. Lunch is included at a local restaurant. Continue onto Trinidad de Cuba and your accommodation.
Trinidad is a monument to Spanish colonialism. Like Old Havana it is also UNESCO World Heritage listed and today much of its architecture and cobblestone streets remain untouched. The town itself is fairly small and much can be seen in one day, including visits to some of Cuba’s best museums. There are plenty of bars and restaurants to choose from and at night the town comes alive to the beat of the best Afro-Cuban sounds. Nearby are some excellent beaches on the Playa Ancon Peninsula.
Trinidad is perhaps Cuba’s loveliest city; you’ll explore the UNESCO Heritage Listed historic centre on today’s walking tour. Visit the Plaza Mayor and the Museo Romantico and stroll the cobbled city streets, admiring beautiful colonial architecture. Your guide will take you to La Canchanchara bar where you’ll taste a Cuban cocktail. Continue to the ceramic workshop La Casa de Alfarero to admire the locally produced pottery and enjoy some time to wander the local crafts market. Lunch is included at a local restaurant. Dinner at a local paladar (Cuban family home).
Depart Trinidad this morning, travelling north to arrive in the city of Santa Clara. Situated in Central Cuba, Santa Clara is the ideal place to learn about the legacy of the Cuban Revolution and the legend of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara. Your tour will take you to the memorial to Che Guevara and the Tren Blindado Museum & Monument, created in memory of the events of 29 December 1958, during the Battle of Santa Clara. You will also see the Plaza Leoncio Vidal and the Boulevard de la Ciudad. After lunch in a local restaurant you’ll continue to your hotel in Las Terrazas.
Enjoy a full day tour to Cuba’s western Pinar del Rio Province, stunning Viñales Valley and enjoy panoramic views from the Los Jazmines lookout. You’ll have some time to explore the sleepy town of Viñales before touring the lovely Dos Hermanas Valley. We’ll see a prehistoric mural and visit the Cueva del Indio where a boat tour will take you along an underground river. Enjoy a typical Cuban lunch at a local restaurant before returning to your hotel this afternoon.
This morning, after breakfast, you will be transferred back to your hotel in Havana.
Transfer to the airport for your onward flight.