Tantalizingly close to the U.S. but frozen in a bygone era, Cuba’s cobblestone streets, once-elegant façades and deep-rooted culture have developed with little Western influence. But this enigmatic island and its inviting people are beginning to open — slowly. This is a special moment in history to explore a place that has remained isolated for decades. For those who want to experience Cuba before the inevitable changes that increased tourism and foreign involvement are bound to bring, there is simply no better time than NOW. Join International Expeditions’ meticulously refined programs to explore the true essence of Cuba as you delve into the daily lives of naturalists, entrepreneurs and artists while seeing this nation through the eyes of its people.
IE’s Complete Cuba program offers a fascinating and unforgettable opportunity to interact with the Cuban people on a deep level — making you a true ambassador and not a “tourist.” Complete Cuba surveys all of Cuba’s cultural “must sees” including Trinidad, Bay of Pigs, Vinales and, of course, Havana. Our itinerary offers a full schedule of engaging and immersive experiences focused on cultural exchange and education. But what really sets IE’s Cuba itinerary apart is our emphasis on engaging with Cuban naturalists, birders, biologists and conservation groups as we all learn about the transformative power that real, honest conversation can have in the lives of ordinary people.
The biggest perk of people-to-people travel in Cuba is forming friendships with the people you encounter – from lunch with guides Luis or Janet in Topes de Collantes National Park to strolling the Malecon with Lino, a local trumpet player. IE’s small groups make it possible to enjoy truly unscripted encounters and interactions with Cuba’s people. Plus, with our small groups comes the flexibility to take advantage of spontaneous opportunities to call on a medical clinic or take longer than planned to chat with a family.
People-to-People travel is an initiative allowing U.S. citizens to travel to Cuba on a limited basis to participate in cultural experiences and have direct contact with the Cuban people to learn more about them and their culture, while they learn about the American way of life. This is a highly rewarding educational experience, where you enjoy direct engagement with the Cuban people you will meet. IE’s people-to-people activities focus on education and cultural exchange as you meet Cuban birders, volunteers, scientists and more.