Accredited schools and universities will no longer need to apply for a Specific License for Cuba travel by their students, faculty and
staff (including but not limited to adjunct faculty and part-time staff).
Now they can travel to Cuba under a General License
(no application necessary) if participating in a structured educational program as part of a course offered for credit by the
sponsoring U.S. institution.
Be in the know and sign up for email updates from Authentic Cuba Travel. Our Newsletters are full of information for teachers, professors & educators. Free Cuba Explorer Tours for teachers. Last minute discounts on Cuba education tours & featured educational Cuba tours, all to keep you up to date with the world of Authentic Cuba Travel.
Cuba Educational & Cultural Travel: From Dec 25, 2013 to Jan 3, 2014
Cuba Education Tour V for Teachers, Professors and Education Professionals!
Explore Cuba from Coast to Coast for as little as
$1,999 (all taxes included)
Explore Havana, Santa Clara, Camaguey, Santiago de Cuba, Cienfuegos, Trinidad...
REFERRAL DISCOUNT: $100 | Per each new tour participant
Authentic Cuba Travel in coordination with Cuba’s Teachers Union, the University of Havana and the University of
Santiago de Cuba warmly invite teachers, professors, and educators from Canada, United States and all over the
world to join this official Cuba education tour taking place from December 25, 2013 to January 3, 2014. This is the only tour for educators that travels from coast to coast! No other company offers this type of opportunity. Actually we run it once a year only!
Cuba, with its mix of Spanish and African roots, is the largest, least commercialized, and most exciting island
in the Caribbean. Nowhere in Cuba is it more evident that in the eastern city of Santiago de Cuba, the second major
metropolis in the largest Antillean Island, boasting the privilege of being considered the capital of the Caribbean,
due to its centuries-old history.
This Cuba study tour is a great opportunity for educators, historians, anthropologists, sociologists and scholars keen
on African and Caribbean heritage to witness the profound influence of African culture on the social fabric of our Americas.
Cuba is also one of the world's last bastions of communism with a fascinating modern history. Cuba's relative political
isolation has prevented it from being overrun by tourists, and locals are sincerely friendly to those who do venture in.
This tour is also a brilliant way of seeing the real Cuba; such a passionate and patriotic people have transformed this
country into a very environmentally friendly place (Cuba is one of the few self sustainable countries in the world); partly
because of the trade embargo, meaning that nearly everything the Cuban people uses is made and produced in Cuba and as
a result is sustainable.
Please, check the day-by-day itinerary below. Welcome Aboard!
Cuba Education Tour Highlights include:
Explore Havana Historical Centre, a UNESCO Heritage Site.
Travel to "the Capital of the Caribbean", Santiago de Cuba.
Visit to Basilica de Nuestra Senora del Cobre.
Tour of "The Pearl of the South" Cienfuegos.
Guided tour of UNESCO World Heritage Site, Cienfuegos Centre.
Guided tour of Camaguey, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Discover colonial Trinidad, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Travel to UNESCO World Heritage Site Sugar Mill Valley.
Explore Santa Clara, capital city Villa Clara province.
Visit to Che Guevara Square of Revolution & Mausoleum.
Visit to Moncada barracks Primary School.
Tour of the Cuba's National Art Schools (ISA).
Guided tour of the Museum of Fine Arts' Cuban Collection.
Guided tour of Cuba’s Literacy Museum.
Visit to high school Escuela Taller in Old Havana.
Visit to an Elementary School in Havana City.
Notice to US citizens:
This Cuba education tour is licensable for US educators and professionals.
Cost is low to ensure that hard working professors, teachers and educators can attend.
The purpose of the tours is for North America education professionals to get a sense of Cuba’s education,
architecture, culture, history and people.
No one can say what the future will hold for US Cuba travel, so it's important to take advantage of the
Don't wait? This is a once in a lifetime opportunity so don't miss out. Call us or book your tour on line now.
The best examples of early Cuban architecture can be seen in military fortifications such as
the Fortress of the Royal Force and the Morro Castle dating from the 16th Century.
The influence from different styles and cultures can be seen in Havana's colonial architecture,
with a diverse range of Moorish, Spanish, Italian, Greek and Roman.
Guided tour of Cuba's National Art Schools (ISA).
Meet with Cuban art students and professors. ISA professors are all active artists, musicians or dancers. Each faculty in the arts
provides a combination of theory and practice designed for students serious about artistic achievement through
Tour of Cuba's Literacy Museum in Havana City.
Meeting with museum director Luisa Campos for an introduction on the history of the literacy campaign. Cuban students and volunteers
went to rural areas to teach other country men to read and provide information on current Cuban politics.
Rural women received schooling and job training if they choose to, which allowed them to work outside of agriculture.
Visit to the Cathedral Square, in Old Havana, the most beautiful and private 18th century colonial plaza of Cuba, named after the masterpiece
of Cuban baroque architecture: the Cathedral of Havana built by the Jesuit order.
Visit Elementary School “Angela Landa”. Meeting with the principal of the school Prof. Sonia Garcia. Tour of the school. Meeting with Cuban teachers and students.
Every night a cannon shoot rumbles at 9pm so called
Cañonazo de las 9, a custom kept from colonial times, signaling the closure of the city wall doors. Night after night
hundreds of people attend to this tradition of Havana. In today´s ceremony, voices and movements of the Infantry Colonial
Regulations of Spain are used. Also the uniforms of almost every force that formed the Royal Spanish Army are used.
For instance: the Infantry Force is represented in the person of the army-issue chief and the drum; the Artillery
Force is represented by the standard-bearer and the Cavalry Force by the soldiers who load and shut the cannon.
Camaguey Historical Center, declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008 is a must in any architecture
Cuba tour. Camaguey is the third largest city in Cuba, and the largest province in the country. Camaguey City,
with a historic core as large as Havana's and many times larger than Trinidad's, shows visitors its small streets
of peculiar outlines, its churches, squares and its mansions, with homely courtyars presided by the large jar-shaped
clay tinajones, used locally as rain water collectors.
The shrine of Our Lady of Charity is housed in Cuba's only basilica,
a cream-colored square church with red domes overlooking the town of El Cobre. The Virgin of Charity (La Virgen de la Caridad) is a
miraculous statue of the Virgin Mary in the mining town of El Cobre in Santiago de Cuba. Her shrine is the most
important religious site on the entire island.
Trinidad is an outstanding example of Cuba's colonial architecture. It has maintained its historic core, featuring
the highest percentage of surviving antique buildings and public squares and bringing together architectural, historic
and cultural elements of great value.
Cienfuegos city is the first, and an outstanding example of an architectural ensemble that represents the new ideas of
modernity, hygiene and order in urban planning as developed in Latin America from the 19th century.
The building showing an eclectic architecture was erected at a cost of a million and half pesos.
French, Arabic, Italian and Cuban artisans worked with marble, alabaster, brass, glass and ceramic imported from Spain, Italy
and United States. The entrance is primitive Gothic style and leads to a dining room of Mudejar architecture influence,
which imitates the famous Patio of the Lions, of Alhambra, in Granada.
Casino styling includes men being "machisimo" and women being femininely sexy, with major body and muscle isolations, through the influence of Rhumba dancing.
You are welcomed by your Authentic Cuba Travel tour guide and bus driver.
Private transfer to your hotel Park View, located
in Old Havana.
Breakfast is complimentary from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.
Day 2. Thursday 26 December 2013. Expore Cuba Arts Schools Education System
Morning: guided tour of Cuba's National Art Schools. Great opportunity to exchange with the new generation
of Cuban artists. Meet with students and teachers.
The schools were designed and built by architects
Cuban Ricardo Porro and the Italians Roberto Gottardi and Vittorio Garatti from 1961 to
1965, in the former affluent neighborhood of Country Club Park (today known as Cubanacán), specifically on the grounds of the
Havana Country Club golf course.
Only two of the schools were completed, the rest being abandoned and awaiting restoration funding recently approved by the Cuban
After 40 years, the original team of architects got together again to collaborate in the most important architecture work from
the Cuban Revolution.
Lunch hosted by Jose Fuster, one of the most important Cuban ceramists and painters today.
Afternoon: visit to the Literacy Museum in the Liberty City neighborhood of Havana.
Meeting with museum director Luisa Campos for an introduction on the history of the literacy campaign and the new literacy campaigns
taking place in Venezuela, Bolivia and other regions based on the Cuban Campaign model.
Followed by: visit the Museum of Fine Arts' Cuban Collection where we see the evolution of Cuba's visual arts over the last 300 years.
The collection accounts for the richness of our Spanish, French, Chinese, African cultural roots.
Evening: tonight we have a Cuban band playing for us! You'll learn to dance to Salsa, Son, Rumba, and other popular Cuban rhythms
with instruction from bandleaders.
Day 3. Friday 27 December 2013. Havana
Morning: visit to Workshop School in Old Havana. High school graduate students enroll in this institution
to learn the arts and crafts necessary to authentically restore the ancient buildings of Old Havana.
Old Havana is a 528 acre area that contains approximately 4000 buildings in a variety of styles including Spanish Baroque,
Neocolonial, Beaux Arts, and Moorish. Since the 1990s, development efforts in Havana include extensive historic preservation,
architectural renewal, and modernization of infrastructure.
Tour the school and get engaged with students in the different workshops such as Glass work, Carpentry, Iron work
Exchange with professors and students.
Followed by visit to Primary School “Angela Landa”. Exchange with teachers and students to learn Cuba’s primary education level. Tour the schools and
enjoy educational and cultural activities by students. Meet the principal of the school Prof. Sonia Garcia. Tour of the school.
Lunch in La Mina restaurant where you can enjoy traditional Cuban dishes and live music!
Afternoon: guided walking tour of UNESCO World Heritage Site, Old Havana.
Visit to the Cathedral Square, named after the masterpiece of Cuban baroque architecture:
the Cathedral of Havana built by the Jesuit order.
The Cathedral's baroque facade is simultaneously intimate and imposing, and one of the two towers is visibly larger,
creating a pleasing asymmetry. As with many churches in the city, the building material of Havana
Cathedral includes coral, cut and hauled from the edge of the sea by slaves. Look carefully and you'll see fossils of marine
flora and fauna in the stone of the cathedral.
Visit to Square of Arms, ancient military parade ground for Spanish soldiers and surrounded by impressive
buildings such as:
Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, the former official residence of the governors (Captains General) of Havana,
Cuba. It is home to the Museum of the City of Havana. It houses exhibitions of art and historical artifacts and many of the
rooms are preserved with their original Colonial decoration.
Palacio del Segundo Cabo. The seat of the second authority of the island. Today it houses important publishing
Castillo de la Real Fuerza. The second oldest fortress built by the Spaniards in the West Indies. The castle was recently renovated
and reopened in June 2008 to hold the impressive maritime museum. Well laid out exhibits chart Spain and Cuba's naval history.
Continue walking tour onto San Francisco Square, named after the Convent of San Francisco,
this square was conceived in 1628, with the objective of supplying water to the ships trading with the metropolis. For many years it also served to stockpile
the goods arriving from the harbor. Chronicles of the time say that the square had a busy commercial life. The people, in humble
carts or afoot, sold and bought a variety of goods. It’s important to know that through this place the Spanish immigrants
arrived to Cuba.
Visit to Plaza Vieja, the only civic square of colonial times. Notice it doesn't have a church or government building around.
Here we will visit important institutions for visual arts.
Free time in the famous handicraft market of Old Havana, located inside the Almacenes de Depósito
San José, an old warehouse on the harbourside where you can purchase all sorts of crafts and souvenirs by local artisans.
Return to hotel.
Evening: attend one of the most traditional and popular ceremonies in Cuba, the Fire of the Cannon of 9 O'Clock at the Fortress of
San Carlos de La Cabana.
Day 4. Saturday 28 December 2013. Havana- Santa Clara- Camaguey
Morning: departure to Santa Clara, capital city of the Cuban province of Villa Clara. It is located in the most central region of the province and almost in the most central region of the country.
Santa Clara was the site of the last battle of the Cuban Revolution in late 1958, led by Ernesto Che Guevara. Guevara's column first captured the garrison at Fomento. Then, using a bulldozer, Guevara's soldiers destroyed railroad tracks and derailed a train full of troops and supplies sent by Batista. After taking the city of Santa Clara, Batista fled Cuba less than 12 hours later.
Visit to Ernesto Che Guevara Square of Revolution and Mausoleum, where the remains of Che and 16 of his men killed in action in 1967 in Bolivia rest in peace. This is a memorial complex featuring a large square, used for parades and large rallies, a monument now emblematic of Santa Clara, and a mausoleum crypt with an exhibit displaying artefacts, photos and memorabilia of Che, an extensive view of his life and work.
Visit to the Armoured Train Battle Monument, the site where guerrilla forces commanded by Che Guevara defeated reinforcements sent in an armoured train (tren blindado) by Batista's army in 1958. The monument site includes original armoured boxcars with displays of photos, armaments and artefacts inside, and a bulldozer used by the rebels to derail the train.
Lunch at Los Caneyes hotel and private check in.
Afternoon: continue on bus ride to Camaguey city in central Cuba.
Day 5. Sunday 29 December 2013. Cammaguey- Santiago de Cuba
Morning: guided walking tour of Camaguey Historical Centre, declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008. Camaguey is the third largest city in Cuba, and the largest province in the country. It is one of the seven original settlements founded by Diego Velasquez.
The old city layout resembles a real maze, with narrow, short streets always turning in a direction or another. After Henry Morgan burned the city in the 17th century, it was designed like a maze so attackers would find it hard to move around inside the city.
We will explore Parque Agramonte named after local hero, the Cathedral, originally established in 1530 and other interesting historical sites of the city such as Plaza San Juan de Dios, dominated by the church of the same name.
Lunch at La Campana de Toledo (optional)
Afternoon: transfer to Santiago de Cuba city, the former capital of the country and the second largest city in Cuba. Founded by Diego Velazquez in 1514, the city was built on the east side of the bay.
This was the starting point of the expeditions led by Juan de Grijalba and Hernan Cortes to the coasts of Mexico in 1518, and in 1538 by Hernando de Soto's expedition to Florida. The first cathedral was built in the city in 1528. From 1522 until 1589 Santiago was the capital of the Spanish colony of Cuba.
The city experienced an influx of French immigrants in the late 18th century and early 19th century, many coming from Haiti after the Haitian slave revolt of 1791. This added to the city's eclectic cultural mix, already rich with Spanish and African culture.
Evening: enjoy traditional local music at Casa de la Trova.
Your guide will give you options the days before so that you plan ahead this day or just play as it goes!
Day 6 Monday 30 December 2013. Santiago de Cuba
Morning: meet with professors of the University of Santiago de Cuba, also known as the Eastern University of Cuba. Founded in 1947, it is organized in 11 Faculties: Social Sciences, Humanities, Law, Economics, Natural Sciences, Mathematics, Distance Education, Chemical Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Construction.
Professors Lloga and Sanz will be your escorts for the rest of the morning.
Visit to Basilica de Nuestra Senora del Cobre. This is the country’s most sacred pilgrimage site since the Virgin of Charity is the patron saint of Cuba. In the Afro-Cuban religion she is associated with Ochun, the Yoruba goddess of love.
Visit to Moncada barracks, one of the largest military barracks of Batista government. On July 26, 1953, it was the site of an armed attack by a small group of revolutionaries led by Fidel Castro. This armed attack is widely accepted as the beginning of the Cuban Revolution.
Today it houses the largest primary school of Eastern Cuba with over 1600 students and 245 teachers.
Panoramic bus ride of Modern Santiago de Cuba. We will visit the Heredia Theatre, San Juan Hill, Square of Revolution Antonio Maceo, baseball stadium Saturnino Lora, Palacio de Justicia, among others.
Lunch at Plaza Dolores restaurant.
Afternoon: visit to Parque Cespedes, located at the heart of the historical center of the city.
The Plaza is surrounded by important buildings such as:
The Cathedral, originally built in 1522 and where the remains of Diego Velasquez are buried.
Ayuntamiento (City Hall) erected in 1950’s. From the balcony of this building Fidel Castro gave his victory speech
immediately after the success of the Revolution on January 1rst, 1959.
Visit the oldest house in Cuba, today Museo de Ambiente Historico Colonial and formerly the residence of Diego
Velázquez in the XVI century.
Return to hotel.
Day 7. Monday 31 December 2013. Santiago de Cuba- Bayamo- Trinidad
Morning: departure to Bayamo, the second of the seven cities founded by Diego Velázquez de Cuéllar. It was established on November 5, 1513.
During much of the 16th century it was one of the most important agricultural and commercial settlements of the island. Its inland situation gave it relative security against the pirates who then infested West Indian seas, and the misfortunes of Santiago were the fortunes of Bayamo.
Bayamo was the stronghold of early revolutionary Carlos Manuel de Céspedes, who freed his slaves and declared war against colonialist Spain. During the ensuing battles, Bayamo exchanged hands several times and was once burned to the ground by Cuban rebels as the city was being sacked by the Spanish.
Visit to Bayamo’s Historical Center.
Visit to Bayamo’s Cathedral. It dates back to the 16th century. It reflects the ethnic style of baroque architecture. Some of the traditional painting masterpieces of Cuba are also found in it. It portrays a battle mural with a flag of the Cuban revolution hoisted on the top.
Now we journey on to the historic city of Trinidad and check in at all-inclusive Costa Sur.
You'll have time for dinner and a swim in the warm waters of the Caribbean Sea.
Welcome in the New Year with family, friends, staff, guests and tourmates at your hotel. They'll have many special activities planned! You can also attend events in the town of Trinidad some twenty minutes away by taxi.
Day 8. Tuesday 1 January 2014. Trinidad
Morning: visit to the Academy of Painting “Oscar Fernandez”. Meet with the Principal and teachers to learn about the school curriculum and enrollment criteria. Tour the school and exchange
with students in the different workshops.
Followed by guided walking tour of UNESCO World Heritage Site, Trinidad’s Historical Center. Trinidad is an
outstanding example of a colonial city. It has maintained its historic core, featuring the highest percentage of surviving
antique buildings and public squares and bringing together architectural, historic and cultural elements of great value.
The city is representative of the colonial human settlement and the Valle de Los Ingenios is testimony to the development
of the sugar industry.
Visit to the Architecture Museum (Casa de los Sanchez Iznaga), housing the most representative samples of the city's architectural
development in the 18th and 19th centuries.
Visit to Museo Lucha contra Bandidos, former home of the San Francisco de Asis convent.
Visit to Museo Romantico, overlooking the Trinidad main square. It has an excellent exhibition of romantic style porcelain, glass,
paintings and decorative furniture which belonged to the Conde de Brunet and other Trinidad notorious families.
We will stop at a mirador (lookout) over the Sugar Mill Valley, designated by UNESCO as a World Cultural
Heritage Site in 1988, it constitutes a sort of triangular plain covering some 250
square kilometers and includes the San Luis, Agabama-Meyer and Santa Rosa valleys, besides the coastal plain of the
south delta of the Manati River.
Trinidad is well known for its pottery makers. We meet with a family that has been passing the tradition for generations:
Free time to wander the streets of historical centre or enjoy the beach.
Lunch at hotel.
Evening is free to enjoy the beach, hotel amenities, and the lively streets of Trinidad. How about live Cuban popular music on
steps of Casa de la Música – a great opportunity to dance with Cubans and your tour companions.
Day 9. Wednesday 2 January 2014. Trinidad- Cienfuegos- Habana
En route, we will visit Cienfuegos city. Cienfuegos is the first, and an outstanding example of an architectural
ensemble representing the new ideas of modernity, hygiene and order in urban planning as developed in Latin America from the 19th
This countryside exploration trip will give participants insights on how the Cuban education system works
in different cities of the country.
The colonial town of Cienfuegos was founded in 1819 in the Spanish territory but was initially settled by immigrants of
French origin. It became a trading place for sugar cane, tobacco and coffee. Situated on the Caribbean coast of southern-central
Cuba at the heart of the country’s sugar cane, mango, tobacco and coffee production area, the town first developed in the
It later became more eclectic but retained a harmonious overall townscape. Among buildings of particular
interest are the Government Palace (City Hall), San Lorenzo School, the Bishopric, the Ferrer Palace, the former lyceum, and some
Guided walking tour of Cienfuegos Historical Center.
We will visit neoclassical buildings around Paseo del Prado and the main Square Jose Marti such as:
The Tomas Terry Theatre, completed in 1895 and named after a sugar baron from Venezuela who arrived in Cuba with no money and
made his fortune by buying sick slaves for a low price, to later nurse them back to health and reselling them. This money was
invested in a sugar estate that brought him the wealth to build several outstanding buildings in Cienfuegos, including this
theatre, with materials specially brought over from Europe.
The Casa de la Cultura, home of another wealthy sugar baron, stunning mansion in neoclassical style.
The Cathedral built with the donation of wealthy families like the Lebrancs, the Albis, the Terrys. Inside you find the
reproductions of the 12 Apostles in stained glass imported from Paris. Also the original machinery of the clock tower was built
in France. Still in place and working.
We'll also visit the elegant art gallery Galería de Arte Maroya and review its impressively displayed collection of paintings,
sculptures and antiques.
Visit to Palacio de Valle upon arrival. The eclectic building was erected at a cost of a million and half pesos.
French, Arabic, Italian and Cuban artisans worked with marble, alabaster, brass, glass and ceramic imported from Spain, Italy and
United States. The entrance is primitive Gothic style and leads to a dining room of Mudejar influence, which imitates the famous
Patio of the Lions, of Alhambra, in Granada.
Lunch at Palacio del Valle restaurant.
Afternoon: continue on bus ride to Havana city. Check in at Park View Hotel.
Farewell dinner at Prado y Neptuno restaurant.
Day 10. Thursday 3 January 2014. Departure
Early morning departure to Havana City International Airport for departure.
Authentic Cuba Travel
Cuba Education Tours
Visit to Trinidad's Academy of Painting. Tour of the school and exchange with
students and teachers in the workshops. Learn about the school educational
Meet teachers and students at primary schools to learn about the primary education level in Cuba.
Tour the schools and enjoy educational-cultural activities by students.
Guided tour of the Latin America School of Medicine, a jewel of the Cuban education system,
and one of the largest medical school in the world.
Visit to the Literacy Museum in Havana. A must-see in any Cuba education tour for teachers, educators and
those interested in learning more about Cuba education system.
Visit to the University of Havana, founded in 1728, a pilar of education success in Cuba.
Exchange with Cuban educators and students.
Followed by a tour of the University of Havana.
Tour Cuba's Superior Institute of Art (ISA), the highest level of artistic education in Cuba.
Meet with Cuban teachers and students of visual arts, theatre, dance and music.
Meet with teachers and students of Workshop School in Old Havana. The school teaches traditional
and modern techniques of restoration work. A nice visit to any Cuba education tour.
Guided tour of Cuba's Ballet School, the largest ballet school
in the world with over 4000 students, and the most prestigious ballet school within Cuba
During your Cuba educational tour, you will visit secondary schools. Secondary education in Cuba is
compulsory from grades 7 through 9.
Hello! My name is Jacqui Birchall. I am a retired Surrey (BC)
high school teacher. My students and I travelled to Cuba with this wonderful people. It was an amazing experience for
my students, students who cried as we left Cuba. I am happy to answer any questions you may have about how to organize
your trip and any other questions you may have about Cuba. I have been lucky enough to have spent time teaching in Cuba
and I have travelled extensively throughout the island. I invite you to take your classroom to Cuba with us!