Join Us for a Magical Experience in Cuba
8 DAYS/7NIGHTS — OCTOBER 25-NOVEMBER 1, 2016
Join us on an amazing photo adventure of a lifetime, but you must act fast or this opportunity will be gone for good! This is a cultural and educational exchange geared toward directly experiencing the people and places of Cuba. See history-making changes taking place, learn the history, and enjoy the beauty all around you. We will provide photography instruction before, during and after your daily photo shoots and cultural exchange activities. $4,895 package includes round trip airfare from Tampa to Havana, Cuba visa, land travel in Cuba, hotel, airport and program transfers, entry fees/admissions, and most meals
$500 non-refundable deposits due by Aug. 1st
We will visit cultural locations and special photo shoot locations, together as a group and on our own during free time. You will have a chance to interact with the Cuban people and see them go about their daily lives.
* HISTORIC 4-STAR HOTEL STAY RIGHT IN OLD HAVANA!! WALK OUT YOUR DOOR INTO THE MOST INTERESTING & FAMOUS PARTS OF HAVANA
* FULL DAYS AND NIGHTS OF EXPERIENCE IN HAVANA
- SPECIALLY-PLANNED MEET-UP, CULTURAL EXCHANGE, AND PHOTO SHOOT WITH CUBAN STUDENTS AT A BOXING CLUB
SPECIALLY-PLANNED EARLY MORNING AND LATE DAY PHOTO SHOOTS AT SITES PRE-SCOUTED BY YVONNE BUTLER
Day 1 – Tues, October 25 – L, D HAVANA
On arrival you will be transported into the heart of Old Havana for an early check-in at your hotel, followed by an exciting walk the now famous-infamous La Bodequita del Medio restaurant, one of Ernest Hemingway’s famous spots. We will go on a narrated tour of the Five Plazas to give you an orientation, stop at the Floridita for a daiquiri (again Hemingway), and explore street art and photography at Hamel Alley. Dinner tonight is convened on the Malecón at a fancy paladar. We will finish the evening with an informal gathering on the rooftop of our hotel to get oriented to the days ahead.
Day 2 – Wed, October 26 – B, L, D HAVANA
This day begins with an informal sunrise shoot along the Malecón and port, followed by breakfast at the hotel and a guided city tour of Havana with several stops for photo opportunities. After a light lunch at another great paladar (privately-owned restaurant), we will ascend to a 30th floor observation point and then on to a neighborhood where gallery and street photography will be pursued. This is a great day for interacting with the Cuban people of all ages, where they live and work. Dinner tonight is deep in the heart of Old Havana. Keep your eyes and ears open on our leisurely walk to the restaurant. How do you spell “spellbinding?”
Day 3 – Thurs, October 27 – B, L, D HAVANA
If you are a fan of or curious about Ernest Hemingway (and who isn’t), this is your day to crawl inside the wonders and delights of seeing the Hemingway home and museum at Finca la Vigia, in the outskirts of Havana. Our route provides some eye-opening scenes of neighborhoods and morning activities. We will get there early before the crowds, explore the area, and take in the delights of all the taxis particulares (vintage cars that are private taxis.) We will go then to the nearby fishing village of Cojimar where Hemingway and his buddies hung out. You will have plenty of time to take in the village, the people, the castle, the seascapes, and more. We will eat at a small but 2
lovely paladar in Cojimar where a favorite is the tableside making of lip-smacking Cuban coffee. On the way back toward central Havana, we will do some landscape, architecture, and seascape photography from the Morro Cabana area. A little later on return to the hotel, we will walk to a boxing school for a photo shoot. And . . . are you ready? We cap off the evening with dinner and performance of the Buena Vista Social Club All-Stars at Café Taberna, followed by taxi particulares rides back to the hotel. What a night!
Day 4 – Friday, October 28 – B, L, D HAVANA – TRINIDAD
We hope you were able to settle down and get some rest the night before this day. We will make a road trip to Trinidad, where we will stay at a nice hotel and explore another special city in Cuba. After dinner we will go out to the center of town at Plaza Mayor and spend an informal evening with the people of Trinidad with music, drinks and dancing.
Day 5 – Saturday, October 29 – B, L, D TRINIDAD
The second day in Trinidad offers varied experiences in the Valley of the Sugar Mills and a visit to a plantation. Some of us will climb a special 147-foot lookout tower for commanding views of the valley below and beyond. After a day of getting to know Trinidad, we will go back once again to mingle with its people for fun and dancing in the Plaza.
Day 6 – Sunday, October 30 B, L, D – TRINIDAD – CIENFUEGOS – HAVANA
We will be off to return to Havana, but not without a fun-filled stop in Cienfuegos, Cuba’s loveliest city of French colonial architecture located on a scenic ocean bay. A walking tour of historic and scenic locations will give you time for photography. When back in Havana in late afternoon, we will check into a nice hotel in Centro Habana and go to dinner at a special restaurant within walking distance of the hotel. The adventurous (and energetic) folks among us will probably venture out on the town, while those who need to catch their breath and absorb all that we have done so far will relax the rest of the evening.
Day 7 – Monday, October 31 B, D – HAVANA
After breakfast we will start the day with dance lessons and a bunch of fun at a dance company in Havana. You will meet and photograph the dance instructors and learn about dance and the arts in Cuba. Your afternoon is then free to have lunch with the locals and go on your own to special places you want to re-visit or explore. We will have our farewell dinner and pack for the return journey. We have the option of getting together on our own at a jazz club after dinner, until midnight or even 2 am when the club closes. We shall see who the diehard jazz fans and nighthawks are!
Day 8 – Tuesday, November 1
6:00 am Transfer from hotel to airport for customs clearance and the return flight, arriving at Tampa at approximately 10:30 am; retrieve your checked luggage and go through customs, allowing a minimum of three hours after arrival in Tampa for connecting flights.
PROGRAM, PRICING, AND REGISTRATION DETAILS
Cuba is a special destination. Please understand that all elements of this itinerary are subject to change and that the times and activities listed above are approximate. The Ground Manager reserves the right to re-order event times and sequences during the day for weather conditions or other factors.
Bobbi Lane (on the right) and Lee Varis (left) are the first couple of photography, having over 40 years of experience between them in photo-education. Photographers, authors, and workshop leaders, together they offer a complete package of education in all aspects of photography for people, places, and post processing. This will be their first photo-tour of Cuba, however, this trip is designed and managed by the Cuba cultural exchange expert, Yvonne Butler, so nothing is left to chance. Take a look at the following images made by friends and former students of Bobbi & Lee to get an idea of the kinds of things you will be experiencing and photographing: