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Cuba Today: People and Society

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Road Scholar
Program #20437RJ

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9 Days | 8 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Active
Road Scholar has thousands of educational adventures to choose from. A good way to narrow down our list is to browse our collection of "Most Popular" programs.
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EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
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Discussion Board

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ted and patti reingold May 16, 2015 at 12:05 AM

You're all so right. When traveling in many parts of the world, like China and Tibet there were some situations we were unaccustomed to, but always an exciting and interesting experience. Very much looking forward to our June 2 Cuba trip, cultural differences make for a rewarding and enriching experience.


Maureen Hutchinson May 15, 2015 at 05:36 PM

By the way, we loved our trip to Cuba a year and a half ago. The toilets without seats....well sometimes you are just happy to have a toilet! It's all part of my memories of the Cuban experience, and I thought it was a great trip. At one very nice hotel( in which we were not staying) we all trooped in to use the restroom, and it was well equipped, and I said to our Cuban guide "Doesn't this hotel mind that we are doing this? and the guide answered: " it belongs to all of us, after all". ( referring to fact that the hotel ownership was a part of their socialism and the hotel was probably not a private enterprise but a government operated endeavor, therefore open to "all the people. " I am sure the practice is probably not as open to all the people as one would like, but those are the things that I find interesting....the Cuban people's view of such things.


Premium Email Subscriber May 15, 2015 at 02:49 PM

I loved the trip in Cuba. The Jagua hotel was beautiful. You can open the balcony and front door and the breeze will knock you down. The elevators worked, the staff was friendly, I'd go again in a heartbeat. Don't forget to look for the plaques commemorating Fidel's 1960 visit.
Deirdre Mc Kee May 15, 2015 at 06:02 PM

I loved it as well a year and a half ago. I got up very early and sat on the balcony and watched the fishermen. Far better than Hotel National which was historically interesting but now a tourist packed , falling apart place. But……all was fine.
Deirdre Mc Kee May 15, 2015 at 06:02 PM



David Fritz May 15, 2015 at 02:34 PM

Well said, Maureen!


Maureen Hutchinson May 15, 2015 at 11:54 AM

My comment would be that when traveling internationally to places like Cuba, it needs to be the expectation that things will not be like they are in a first world country. That is part of the experience. Go with the flow, you will enjoy yourself much more. If there is something not working, you can try to do something about it, but you may have to just do without it for awhile. And that in itself is part of learning about the culture. My attitude: If the Cubans can live with it, so can I, while in their country.
Barbara R Carter May 15, 2015 at 05:23 PM

I feel sorry for people who travel and expect things to be like their home country!! You are so spot on Maureen! and you said it so so well.
Chris Coleman May 15, 2015 at 06:25 PM

I love this thread. I want to travel to places unlike my own home. Bring on squat toilets and malfunctioning air contonditioning. We're going to Cuba!
Barbara R Carter May 15, 2015 at 07:02 PM

Good for you Chris!!


Beverly Peress May 15, 2015 at 09:56 AM

At one time or another 1 or 2 of the 3 elevators was/were out of service. We were advised by our American tour guide to check electricity and hot water availability as soon as we got into our rooms so we could report it and possibly change rooms. Views were wonderful; staff nice; drinks good.


Carol Johnson May 15, 2015 at 08:44 AM

The Trip Advisor reviews for the Jagua Hotel in Cienfuegos are awful. Did anyone have a problem with the hotel. Things like: no water, no hot water, no electricity so elevators did not work, etc.
Natalie Maynor May 15, 2015 at 09:30 AM

I *adored* the Jagua Hotel. Here's a picture I took of the view from my room: https://www.flickr.com/photos/nataliemaynor/6255961412/
ann tomsho May 15, 2015 at 09:39 AM

Jagua was fine...not quite as fancy as Nacionale but no problems at all... some interesting artwork in lobby
Jan Wolfe May 15, 2015 at 11:13 AM

I loved the Jagua even more than the Nacional. It's a fun 50's throwback with stunning views, great staff, and a charming atmosphere. Make sure you go to the rooftop bar at the club next door too. I've been to Cuba twice, and elevators are an issue at all hotels. There was one morning we didn't have water at the Jagua, but it was back on in a couple of hours, and had it remained off, there's always the swimming pool (pack your swimsuit just for this possibility). Our group leader stressed that when travelling to Cuba, you should pack your "flexibility hat". It's an adventure! And the Jagua is wonderful - even without aqua!


ted and patti reingold May 13, 2015 at 09:13 PM

My husband and I are taking the #20437 6/12 trip. Anyone else on this trip. Suggestions for gift items for People to People visits? We've not traveled w/ Road Scholar before, any suggestions?
Rena Sonshine May 14, 2015 at 01:31 PM

The vocal performing groups would appreciate sheet music. Other than that, scroll down now, that it is working, to see the list John recently posted. Your gifts are dispensed by the RS tour leader; you won't be giving them at the various venues. There was little opportunity to give directly except to Cuba Libro. Contact them via facebook to get a current book wish list.
ted and patti reingold May 14, 2015 at 08:08 PM

Thanks, appreciate your comments.
ann tomsho May 15, 2015 at 09:42 AM

agreed... and we broke into small groups to talk to young men at Cuba Libro, which is where I handed over a couple of flash drives to ours (he was thrilled)


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