Expert's Corner

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!
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"The International Jazz Festival was amazing and we got to listen and see artist that we would never have encountered. We had heard about the music in Cuba from friends that have attended the Jazz festival in the past. Your organization of this tour made it so easy for us as we did not have to worry about planning our day. The trip was first class and our thanks again for putting together an amazing package." George & June Kawaguchi
"I want to thank you for organizing the perfect trip to Cuba! Dana and I had a wonderful time and we will definitely go back there with your company-hopefully sooner than later. Merilyis (I apologize for the botched spelling!!) was perfect.-warm, very informative, organized, timely--everything you would want a guide to be. We were very happy with the way everything went." Diane Nothnagel
"Thank you, I had an amazing trip with Authentic Cuba Travel. I am getting ready for a show in a few weeks, so I will send more feedback and images once that has passed. The trip itself, the studio visits and the range and quality of the art and artists we met exceeded my expectations. David, our guide, was patient, helpful, and knowledgeable. He was a good bridge between having a "tourist" view of Cuba and a facilitated, "real" view." Lynn Tomaszewski
"I just wanted to say thank you for arranging our trip to Cuba. I just got back yesterday and the trip was incredible. I LOVE Cuba and can't wait to go back. The trip was very organized, informative, and I learned so much. Alexis, our local guide, was the best-- so much knowledge!! And our driver, Ramon was so much fun. I also loved the music we had with the new group Autotiempo...it was a private show! So good!!! We had a lovely, memorable experience." Nahyon Lee
"We found Authentic Cuba Travel to be wonderfully helpful, not only with the arrangements for the Film Festival tour, but for extra add-on arrangements. As for the tour itself, a week in the Hotel Nacional and a pass to the film festival add up to pure happiness. Everything else was icing on the cake. Can’t wait until next year’s film festival!" Kathy Kahn
"The trip went absolutely wonderful. Tatiana, our tour guide, was superb and dealt with the different situations in the most professional and kind way. None of the students were in sociology, politics, economics etc. so many concepts might have been irrelevant or over their head to them or over emphasized, but this is the reason I wanted to take them to Cuba. In that perspective it was great and Tatiana was great, the many people we met were great, and the driver was outstanding." Jessica D. Cassleman, Washington State University, USA
"We were welcomed by Deacon Juan Rios in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. We distributed rosaries, holy cards, medicine and financial aid to the Deacon. During our second day, we visited the "Santovenia Senior Center," a Catholic nursing home for the elderly run by Sister Consuelo Pena..." Rev. Thaddeus Dzieszko
"Thanks you for providing a lovely and educational experience. The guide service was superb. We had Ileana and she was very open, knowledgeable, efficient, and just a lovely lady. You have a gem. The hotels were pleasantly comfortable. The itinerary with visits to several legal entities mixed with local history, architecture and culture was perfect." Marianne Kanning
"This trip met all expectations plus so much more. Wonderful opportunity, architecture, sights and experiences. Thank you! Alex is the best –intelligent and knowledgeable. He opened Cuba for us." Linda and Jim Tonn
"I must say that Mario was an excellent guide as well as Joaquin, the driver. My presentation and Al's went very well at the Jose Marti Nacional Library. I was very moved by ASCUBI (Cuban Association of Librarians) who honored me and Al for our work with Cuban librarians." Herbert Rogers, Librarian and Author

Bird Watching Cuba Tours Reviews



Birding in Cuba

Read Reviews and Testimonials about Bird Watching Cuba Tours by Authentic Cuba Travel. Please do contact Authentic Cuba Travel if you would like to hear directly from those who have so generously traveled and published their experiences in our websites

It was a great trip! Wonderful people and super guides in Cuba. Thank you Authentic Cuba Travel for arranging this for us. I think our guide Osmin did a great job of planning our adventure in Cuba. I always felt things were under control and he knew what he was doing and where we were going.

Seeing 12 of the endemic species of Cuba and all the other great birds was a big highlight. Also swimming in the cave and under the waterfall. Lobster and shrimp was good too! Fabulous coffee at Maria's cafe! And thanks to all in the group for the fabulous memories!

I still have vivid images of travelling together on the bus, singing Happy Birthday to Bernie and enjoying delicious Cuban cake, chatting on rocking chairs on warm evenings, brilliant patches of red and blue on the Tody and iridescent green on a number of other birds, owls popping out of woodpecker holes in palm trees, and the feel of water pounding on my head and shoulders under the waterfall.

Sheila Ziman


Being a first time birder, all was great. Hikes were nicely varied (from easy to slightly challenging). Nicely paced. The two towns of Cienfuegos and Trinidad were awesome. Wish we had more time to "relax" there (perhaps a meal in town or "night out" rather than at the all inclusive would have been nice).

La Moka was neat to see. Would have liked to visit typical houses or apartments there...or to visit the school briefly. But birding was the priority so I understand we could not have "done it all"!

Birding was great but also loved meeting Cubans. Music at all places was awesome. Food was great quality and much better than expected.

Thank you for some wonderful memories. Authentic Cuba Travel has been wonderful and efficient at planning this trip and handling all inquiries and logistics! Bernie, great work keeping us all happy with your various options and diplomatic way of dealing with the group.

Jeff Ashley

Osmin, our Cuban escort guide, was a wonderful person to accompany us- so open and giving of his time. He really made the trip a much more meaningful experience. I thought that all the guides were good in their own ways- including Antonio who did much more than birds- which I found refreshing. Great choices!.

I loved the day in Havana and would have chosen to extend if I could have. Seeing so much of the country was wonderful. Happening upon the sugarcane harvest was wonderful. I am glad we got to see the main birds we hoped to see- but the birding itself was the least important part of the trip. Another highlight was our last night together- we could not have been in a better place (Chez...)- great meal, fun waitstaff, great company. Well done!

I think it was very well planned as a birding trip- I just wish it could have been bigger in scope, but that would have meant more time. I would have liked more music, more art, more theatre, and a chance to sit and watch and take more pictures of real people. Considering it was a tour and that is something we never do- we missed some of the independent traveller habits. But you can't have it all. Thanks so much for all the planning and help in getting us to this wonderful place!

Above all I learned so much from this trip and I haven't stopped talking about it since- my friends are getting a little tired of it. It was a wonderful adventure and our fellow travellers were wonderful companions. Thanks to all for the hard work!

Ralph Van Dusseldorp

Thank you all for a great trip- you were all a big part of making it enjoyable. It was a great experience from first contact with Bernie and Yane in Canada to the end.

Bob Kortright

The guides were enthusiastic, passionate, knowledgeable, and made our tour very interesting and enjoyable. I especially enjoyed touring Havana City and Trinidad.

One thing I will always remember is watching the kids either walking to school or participating in classroom activities.

I am not a very passionate birder however to be able to spot and view some of Cuba's most unique birds was an experience I will never forget.

Lastly I enjoyed spending time with some truly wonderful people and sharing my experience with them!! Thanks!!!!!

Debbie Solymar



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