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Cuba

Cuba Today: Havana and Viñales

Program No. 22879RJ
Discover the history and culture of Havana as you meet with dancers, fishermen, entrepreneurs and more. Explore the Viñales Valley to uncover the natural beauty of this region.

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Price will update based on selection
Prices displayed below are based on per person,doubleoccupancy.
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Apr 9 - Apr 16, 2024
Starting at
3,399
Apr 16 - Apr 23, 2024
Starting at
3,399
Apr 30 - May 7, 2024
Starting at
3,399
Filling Fast!
May 14 - May 21, 2024
Starting at
3,399
Oct 15 - Oct 22, 2024
Starting at
3,399
Oct 22 - Oct 29, 2024
Starting at
3,399
Nov 12 - Nov 19, 2024
Starting at
3,399
Nov 19 - Nov 26, 2024
Starting at
3,399
Dec 3 - Dec 10, 2024
Starting at
3,399
Dec 10 - Dec 17, 2024
Starting at
3,399
Jan 7 - Jan 14, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Jan 14 - Jan 21, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Jan 21 - Jan 28, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Feb 4 - Feb 11, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Feb 11 - Feb 18, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Feb 18 - Feb 25, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Mar 4 - Mar 11, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Mar 11 - Mar 18, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Mar 18 - Mar 25, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Mar 25 - Apr 1, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Apr 8 - Apr 15, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Apr 22 - Apr 29, 2025
Starting at
3,599
May 27 - Jun 3, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Oct 21 - Oct 28, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Oct 28 - Nov 4, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Nov 4 - Nov 11, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Nov 11 - Nov 18, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Dec 2 - Dec 9, 2025
Starting at
3,599
Dec 9 - Dec 16, 2025
Starting at
3,599
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Apr 9 - Apr 16, 2024
Starting at
3,599
Apr 16 - Apr 23, 2024
Starting at
3,599
Apr 30 - May 7, 2024
Starting at
3,599
May 14 - May 21, 2024
Starting at
3,599
Oct 15 - Oct 22, 2024
Starting at
3,599
Oct 22 - Oct 29, 2024
Starting at
3,599
Nov 12 - Nov 19, 2024
Starting at
3,599
Filling Fast!
Nov 19 - Nov 26, 2024
Starting at
3,599
Dec 3 - Dec 10, 2024
Starting at
3,599
Dec 10 - Dec 17, 2024
Starting at
3,599
Jan 7 - Jan 14, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Jan 14 - Jan 21, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Jan 21 - Jan 28, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Feb 4 - Feb 11, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Feb 11 - Feb 18, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Feb 18 - Feb 25, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Mar 4 - Mar 11, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Mar 11 - Mar 18, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Mar 18 - Mar 25, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Mar 25 - Apr 1, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Apr 8 - Apr 15, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Apr 22 - Apr 29, 2025
Starting at
3,899
May 27 - Jun 3, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Oct 21 - Oct 28, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Oct 28 - Nov 4, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Nov 4 - Nov 11, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Nov 11 - Nov 18, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Dec 2 - Dec 9, 2025
Starting at
3,899
Dec 9 - Dec 16, 2025
Starting at
3,899

At a Glance

Gain rare insight into the history and culture of Cuba through important interactions with local business owners, historians, a dance company and farmers. Contrast the city architecture of Havana with the beautiful landscapes of the Viñales Valley, full of karsts and tobacco farms.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to two miles a day on a combination of cobblestone streets and dirt paths. Getting on and off of a motorcoach. Navigating high curbs, uneven steps, and stairs without railings. Travel in a tropical climate.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 13 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Enjoy a performance from an independent Cuban dance company and meet with the dancers to discuss and support their craft.
  • Discover the magic of maintaining antique American cars with a visit to a mechanic's workshop.
  • Learn about the history of Cuban music during a discussion with a Cuban expert.

General Notes

Road Scholar offers opportunities to travel legally to Cuba under the new OFAC Regulations published June 5, 2019. Following the General License category “Support for the Cuban People,” Road Scholar programs include activities intended to strengthen civil society in Cuba. Each day's program promotes independence for the Cuban people and results in meaningful interactions with the Cuban people. Questions about traveling to Cuba? Road Scholar has your answers. Learn more: https://www.roadscholar.org/travel-tips/cuba/.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Alberto Faya
Alberto Faya is a Cuban singer, researcher, composer, and professor of music. He has a degree from the University of Havana, is a professor of musical culture there, and gives lectures relating to Cuban history, culture, and music. During the 1970s, he worked to better incorporate African and Afro-Cuban music in Cuban society, striving to air Afro-Cuban rumba music on radio stations. Faya is a believer in the ongoing melding of different cultures and considers culture as the means by which personal identity is derived.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Alejandro Anido
Alejandro Anido View biography
Alejandro Anido is one of the many amazing Cuban leaders, who works with and has been trained by Road Scholar. He is a Cuban expert, and is responsible for relaying local knowledge, and both cultural and historical information for the places we visit throughout the program. He will answer questions pertaining to Cuba and the Cuban people.
Profile Image of Alberto Faya
Alberto Faya View biography
Alberto Faya is a Cuban singer, researcher, composer, and professor of music. He has a degree from the University of Havana, is a professor of musical culture there, and gives lectures relating to Cuban history, culture, and music. During the 1970s, he worked to better incorporate African and Afro-Cuban music in Cuban society, striving to air Afro-Cuban rumba music on radio stations. Faya is a believer in the ongoing melding of different cultures and considers culture as the means by which personal identity is derived.
Profile Image of Betty Vander Kaaij
Betty Vander Kaaij View biography
Betty Vander Kaaij graduated with a BA in hotel and tourism and jump-started her career in hospitality with Westin Hotels. After stints in Miami, Seattle, and abroad, she moved back to Mexico City and married a Dutch hotelier. In 1997, they were invited to Havana for Cohiba Cigars’ 30th anniversary. Betty fell in love with Cuba and its people and promised herself that one day she would return. Her dream came true in 2011, when she started leading groups to the island.
Profile Image of Carole Cloonan
Carole Cloonan View biography
Carole Cloonan once traveled the world working as a chef, sometimes on private yachts, a job that naturally flowed out of her move to the Caribbean to live in the Virgin Islands. As a chef abroad, she developed a curiosity for understanding other cultures. Now Carole is eager to combine her love of travel — especially in the islands of the Caribbean — with her passion to help Road Scholars be educated in the culture, culinary traditions, artists and their art, and literary legacy of Cuba.
Profile Image of James Fitch
James Warner Fitch View biography
James “Jim” Fitch is a Vermont native and graduate of Northeastern University with a degree in international business. After several years in the corporate world, he traded in his loafers for trekking shoes, leading educational travel programs for teenagers to Spain and Costa Rica. Jim joined the Peace Corps for three years, teaching entrepreneurship and business skills to underserved communities in the Dominican Republic. He began working with Road Scholar in 2015.
Profile Image of Humberto Ramirez
Humberto Ramirez View biography
Humberto R. Ramirez Salazar is an architect and professor of the history of architecture and design at the School of Architecture, ISPJAE, Havana. He has been secretary of the International Council of Monuments and Sites, UNESCO NGO; president of Havana Architect Society; and a member of the National Heritage Commission. Some of his most important works as an architect and designer are the School of Architecture in Alamar, Agriculture and Animals National Research Center, Plaza Hotel Refurbishing Project, and Plaza Carlos III Shopping Center.
Profile Image of Carlos Campos
Carlos Guillermo Campos View biography
Carlos Campos was born in New Jersey to Cuban immigrants. Currently, he lives in the wine district of Ribera del Duero, Spain. With over 40 years in the travel industry, he has worked in over 85 countries and visited 107 countries in total. One of his favorite destinations to work and spend time in is Cuba. Being of Cuban descent, he feels a very close bond with the country and its people.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
The Old Man and the Sea
by Ernest Hemingway
Hemingway's brief story of a fisherman who, after 84 days with no luck, finally makes a big catch. It’s an affectionate portrait of life in Cuba and winner of the 1953 Pulitzer Prize for fiction.
Havana & Cuba West Map
by ITMB
A full-color map to the city center of Havana, at a scale of 1:10,000. Plus, on the reverse, a regional map of Cuba at a scale of 1:600,000.
The Distant Marvels
by Chantel Acevedo
A life-affirming tale of love set during a hurricane in 1960s, post-revolutionary Cuba. To keep hope alive amongst the evacuees, Maria Sirena tells the incredible story of her childhood during Cuba's Third War of Independence.
Moon Cuba
by Christopher P. Baker
A practical guide in the Moon series, packed not only with travel necessities (hotels, restaurants, sights), but also with a good overview of history and destinations throughout Cuba.
Cuba Journeys
by Rowland Scherman (Editor), Charles Fields
Fields presents Cuba in his newest collection, featuring 120 color and 30 black-and-white photographs that illustrate the island's diverse landscapes. He captures the Matanzas coastlands, Vinales Valley tobacco fields and Havana metropolis, which serves as a backdrop to a series highlighting classic American cars. Includes cultural and historical commentary written in English and Spanish.
The Spaces Between, Contemporary Art in Havana
by Antonio Eligio Fernandez
This study of shared, communal spaces for Havana artists examines the context of contemporary Cuban art. Including major contemporary figures, the work discusses artists’ techniques, their major themes and the environments in which they create.
A Simple Habana Melody, From When the World Was Good
by Oscar Hijuelos
An unlikely love story and lyrical tribute to Latin music by the author of Mambo Kings.
Cuba and Its Music, From the First Drums to the Mambo
by Ned Sublette
A thorough and entertaining history of Cuba and its music by the popular radio producer, music historian and cofounder of Cuban record label QbaDisc.
Havana, A Cultural and Literary Companion
by Claudia Lightfoot
An illuminating guide to the city, its history and geography, as the inspiration for writers, artists, musicians and intellectuals.
New Art of Cuba
by Luis Camnitzer
A survey of Cuban art since 1981, all by young artists who have come-of-age since the revolution, and revised to reflect more recent developments. Twenty-four new color plates augment the 200 black and white illustrations.
Trading with the Enemy
by Tom Miller
Miller captures the openness, sensuality and pride of Cuba and the Cubans in this eloquent account of entertaining travels in Fidel's Cuba.
Our Man in Havana
by Graham Greene
The classic story of a British vacuum cleaner salesman who gets accidentally drawn into Cold War espionage with disastrous results.
Cuba, What Everyone Needs to Know
by Julia Sweig
Director for Latin America Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations, Julia Sweig traces the geography, history and identity of Cuba in this admirably succinct portrait of the island nation and its role in world affairs.
The Pride of Havana
by Roberto G Echevarria
Professor Gonzalez Echevarria expertly traces the arc of baseball in Cuba, intertwining its heroes and their stories with the politics, music, dance, and literature of the Cuban people.
Cuba, This Moment, Exactly So
by Lorne Resnick
This deluxe coffee-table book organizes 250 black-and-white photographs around micro-stories that immerse readers in the heat and culture of the "Pearl of the Antilles." Includes a foreword by great travel writer Pico Iyer.
Cuba, A History in Art
by Gary R. Libby
This slim, yet comprehensive survey of Cuban art between 1725 and 1959 explains the development of artists’ styles and how developments in Cuba (and especially Havana) changed their work.
Culture Smart! Cuba
by Mandy Macdonald
A concise, well-illustrated and practical guide to local customs, etiquette and culture.
Passage to Cuba
by Cynthia Carris Alonso
An wonderful coffee-table book that takes readers through the crumbling, baroque splendor of Havana. Subtitled "An Up-Close Look at the World's Most Colorful Culture."
Cuba
by Pierre Hausherr (Photographer), Francois Missen
With full-page photographs, introductory essays on history, architecture, music, food and more, this oversized, illustrated paperback by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Francois Missen and photographer Pierre Hausherr captures the spirit of Cuba, its people, nature and culture.
Havana, History and Architecture of a Romantic City
by Maria Luisa Lobo Montalvo, Hugh Thomas (Introduction)
This magnificent history of Havana, featuring 480 color illustrations, shows the city and its growth from its founding as a Spanish colony to independence.





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