March 24 to April 6, 2013
Join Stanford Professor David Kennedy for an in-depth and personal look at Cuba’s transformation from before the Revolution to today.
Enjoy a balance of activities as we experience Cuba through meetings with its people as well as visits to its sites. Begin in Havana and continue Trinidad and Cienfuegos. We continue to the eastern edge of the island and visit Santiago de Cuba and Baracoa . Throughout our journey visit artists in their studios and meet with architects and city planners, as well as professors and students. These personal encounters with Cuban nationals help us examine present-day life in this island nation and gain perspectives on its past. NOTE: Stanford’s programs to Cuba are licensed by the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control and feature a full-time schedule of educational exchange activities that will result in meaningful interaction between the travelers and individuals in Cuba.
$8,395 per person, double occupancy
$9,165 per person, single occupancy
Please note that this itinerary includes only the tourist sites we will be visiting; guest speakers and special events are also being planned but can’t be confirmed until shortly before our departure. Our intent with this program is to give travelers a well-rounded introduction to the island, including tourist highlights, as well as interactions with local people. The following itinerary is subject to change without notice. We will do our best to adhere to the program, but changes beyond our control may occur.
Sunday, March 24
HOME / MIAMI, FLORIDA, U.S.
Arrive in Miami independently and check in to our hotel at the airport. MIAMI AIRPORT HOTEL
Monday, March 25
MIAMI / HAVANA, CUBA
In the early-morning check-in for our one-hour charter flight to Havana. Upon arrival in Havana, complete immigration and customs, and then proceed to a local restaurant for a welcome orientation and lunch. Check in to our hotel, in the center of Havana. Dinner this evening is at one of Havana’s restaurants. HOTEL PARQUE CENTRAL (B,L,D)
Tuesday, March 26
On our morning walking tour led by architect Maria Elena Martin, visit the former Centro Gallego, now a theater; Capitolio Nacional, the seat of government until after the Cuban Revolution, which bears an uncanny resemblance to the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C.; Havana’s Central Park; and the former Centro Asturiano, which now houses the Universal Art Collection of the National Museum of Fine Arts. Tour the recently-restored Palacio de los Matrimonios, the former Casino Español of Havana, and the Bacardi Building, erected in 1930 and one of Cuba’s most impressive examples of Art Deco architecture. After lunch enjoy a guided tour of the Museum of Cuban Art with curator Nelson Herrera. Later attend an interactive talk on Cuban music by Professors Faya and Córdova, with a quartet of musicians who take us on a musical journey through Cuba’s history. Dinner is at a local restaurant. HOTEL PARQUE CENTRAL (B,L,D)
Wednesday, March 27
On our guided walking tour of Havana Vieja (Old Havana), we stroll down Calle Obispo, a pedestrian promenade, and view the art deco buildings: La Moderna Poesía, the Ambos Mundos Hotel and the banks of the former “Havana Wall Street.” Meet artist Yamilis Brito at the Taller de Gráfica Experimental, an art institution dedicated to printmaking, then visit Plaza de la Catedral and the Catedral de San Cristobal de La Habana. View the Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, former residence of Havana’s governors that currently houses the Museo de la Ciudad, and stop at the Castillo de la Real Fuerza, a massive 16th-century fortress. After lunch at local restaurant, visit the Taller de La Habana, which oversees the restoration of important city landmarks. Meet with students and teachers at the Angela Granda elementary school, At the Fototeca de Cuba, hear about the history of Cuban photography from archive director Nelson Ramirez. Conclude our day at Havana’s oldest square, the 16th-century Plaza Vieja. HOTEL PARQUE CENTRAL (B,L)
Thursday, March 28
This morning observe a performance of flamenco dancing by the Companía Irene Rodríguez, and learn about Cuba’s cultural programs and economic opportunities for Cuban dancers. Continue to the Corona Cigar Factory to see how cigars are crafted. Lunch today is at La Barraca Restaurant at the famous Hotel Nacional de Cuba, located on the famous Malecón (waterfront promenade). Later visit Parque Trillo with guide Elias Asefi, who explains to us about Santería, the Afro-Cuban religion and culture and its role in Cuban society. A short walk away is the home of a Babalao, a Yoruba Priestess who explains the roles of the religion’s deities and elaborate altars in her home. Interact with the students at an English class during our visit to the University of Havana. HOTEL PARQUE CENTRAL (B,L,D)
Friday, March 29
HAVANA / BAY OF PIGS / CIENFUEGOS
Depart this morning for Cienfuegos via Zapata National Park, Cuba’s most important wetlands area, and the Bay of Pigs. Visit the Playa Girón Museum, which displays machine guns, mortars and rocket launchers, as well as a tank and airplane, all artifacts from the failed U.S.-based invasion of Cuba by Cuban exiles and the CIA in 1961. After lunch, continue to Cienfuegos for a walk with architect and conservationist Iran Millan through the Neo-Classical town’s main square, Paseo del Prado, to the impressive 19th-century Teatro Tomás Terry. Tour a Senior Daycare Center to learn about programs available to the elderly. Attend a musical performance by the Cantores de Cienfuegos, a well-known and highly respected choral group. JAGUA HOTEL (B,L,D)
Saturday, March 30
CIENFUEGOS / TRINIDAD
Today travel to Trinidad and visit a Maternity Home, where women with high-risk pregnancies are carefully monitored by doctors and nurses. After lunch in town, tour several museums and the studios of local artists. Continue outside of the city to the Valley of the Sugar Mills (Valle de los Ingenios), the most important sugar-producing region during colonial times and now a UNESCO world heritage site. Stop at the Manaca Iznaga sugar plantation, a hacienda famous for its splendid, seven-level, 142.7-foot-high tower, built between 1835 and 1845 by a sugar baron. We return to Cienfuegos for dinner this evening. JAGUA HOTEL (B,L,D)
Sunday, March 31
CIENFUEGOS / SANTIAGO DE CUBA
This morning fly by private jet to Santiago de Cuba, a very important city during the Revolution. Take an orientation tour along the Avenida de los Libertadores to Revolution Square, and then to San Juan Hill, site of the final battle of the Spanish-American War of 1898, made famous by Teddy Roosevelt and his Rough Riders. After lunch, visit the Hermanos la Salle School for a discussion comparing Cuban and U.S. educational systems and the role of private religious schools, followed by a cultural performance at the Taller Cultural Luis Diaz Oduardo, a center for artists and writers. Dinner and a private performance by an African-Cuban-Caribbean dance company top the evening. HOTEL MELIA SANTIAGO (B,L,D)
Monday, April 1
SANTIAGO DE CUBA
Our day begins with a visit to Santiago’s historical center, where we learn about the preservation and conservation of the city’s patrimony. Continue to the Parque Cespedes, Museo de Arte Colonial and the Casa Heredia, the birthplace of José María de Heredia, the 19th-century poet who first championed Cuban independence. After lunch at El Morro Restaurant, visit Santiago’s 17th-century El Morro, which has served both as a fortress and a prison. Continue to the Moncada Barracks, the site of the beginning of the Cuban Revolution in 1953, when Fidel Castro launched an attack against the Bautista dictatorship. Also tour the Basilica de Cobre, a national religious shrine, and take in a post-dinner performance by a West African dance group. HOTEL MELIA SANTIAGO (B,L,D)
Tuesday, April 2
SANTIAGO DE CUBA / BARACOA
After breakfast, we travel by motorcoach to the town of Baracoa, at the eastern end of the island. On arrival, we lunch at the Finca Duaba, a typical thatched-roofed hut on a cacao plantation, where we also learn about the production of cocoa and taste Cuban hot chocolate. This evening, after dinner at a local restaurant attend a music and dance performance by Bara Rumba and an optional Afro-Cuban dance lesson. HOTEL PORTO SANTO (B,L,D)
Wednesday, April 3
Drive to a children’s community center to meet the young members and attend their choir performance. View students’ artwork and interact with them at the youth art project, Proyecto Alabey. A tour of the city center takes us to an art gallery and local church. After lunch at Marco Polo, watch a performance of dances typical to the countryside of Baracoa. The afternoon is free for you to wander through town and observe daily activities. HOTEL PORTO SANTO (B,L,D)
Thursday, April 4
BARACOA / HAVANA
Transfer to the airport for our flight to Havana. On arrival, drive to the home of artist José Fuster for lunch in the fishing town of Jaimanitas, on the outskirts of Havana. Fuster has decorated over 80 of the town’s houses with colorful, ornate murals and domes, transforming Jaimanitas into a vast work of public art. Continue to the Patronato, once Havana’s upscale shul (synagogue) built by affluent Cuban Jews in the early 1950s. Meet with Adela Dworkin a lifelong resident of Havana and active Jewish community leader, who relates to us the history of Jews in Cuba up to the present day. At the synagogue, focal point for most Jewish activities in Havana, meet with members of the congregation. Dinner is on our own this evening. HOTEL PARQUE CENTRAL (B,L)
Friday, April 5
This morning we hope to have the opportunity to visit the U.S. Interests Section (USINT Havana), which represents U.S. interests in Cuba and is staffed by U.S. Foreign Service personnel. Cuba and the U.S. do not have formal diplomatic relations; however, their respective Interests Sections function as de facto embassies. Later we visit the Cuban Art School. This evening meet the members of an all-female orchestra at a farewell reception, and dine at La Guarida, a private restaurant and the setting for the film “Strawberry and Chocolate.” Our host, the owner, talks with us about the challenges of running a private restaurant in Cuba. HOTEL PARQUE CENTRAL (B,L,D)
Saturday, April 6
HAVANA / MIAMI, U.S.
This morning transfer to the airport for our afternoon charter flight back to the U.S. Upon arrival in Miami, go through immigration and customs and then connect to flights home.
This program is limited to 34 participants.
$8,395 per person, double occupancy
$9,165 per person, single occupancy
*Association nonmembers add $200 per person.
- 1 night in Miami and 12 nights in Cuba at best-available hotel accommodations
- 12 breakfasts, 12 lunches and 10 dinners
- Roundtrip air between Miami and Havana in economy class
- Welcome and farewell receptions
- Bottled water on excursions
- Gratuities to porters, guides and drivers for all group activities
- All tours as described in the itinerary
- Cuban visa fees
- Transfers and baggage handling on program arrival and departure days in Havana
- Minimal medical, accident and evacuation insurance
- Educational program with lecture series and pre-departure materials, including recommended reading list, a selected book, map and travel information
- Services of our professional tour manager to assist you throughout the program
- U.S. domestic airfare
- Passport fees
- Cuban departure tax (25 CUC – approximately $US 30)
- Meals and beverages other than those specified as included
- Transfers and baggage handling on arrival and departure days in Miami
- Trip-cancellation/interruption and baggage insurance
- Excess-baggage charges
- Personal items such as internet access, telephone and fax calls, laundry and gratuities for nongroup services
WHAT TO EXPECT
In the last few years, Cuba has undergone many changes, and general conditions have improved. There are better amenities for tourists, such as more taxi cabs and restaurants. Having said this, we ask you to keep in mind that traveling to Cuba is still an adventure. Because of Cuba’s inconsistent infrastructure, we consider this program to be a moderately strenuous program that is at times physically demanding and busy. Cuba’s tourism industry is developing; and patience with local service standards will greatly improve one’s enjoyment of the trip. We expect that participants will be a self-selecting group whose interest in the places we visit far outweighs the need for creature comforts. In many ways, the challenges of this program are part of the learning experience.
Daily excursions involve one to three miles of walking with tours as long as three hours on city streets, which are, in some cases, uneven or cobblestoned. We tour sites that might include stairs without rails, high thresholds and uneven terrain, and where elevators are limited or unavailable. Some sites and museums do not allow buses to pull up in front, thus necessitating several minutes of walking to reach the entrance. Some days require early-morning starts; we often have a full schedule of excursions, lectures and special events. Due to poor repair and some unpaved rural roads, travel may be slow at times. Medical treatment and care are not always available or up to U.S. standards. Luggage will need to be handled by individual travelers at airport customs points where porters are not permitted. Participants must be physically fit, active and in good health. We welcome travelers 15 years of age and older on this program.
Terms and Conditions
We encourage membership in the Alumni Association as the program cost for nonmembers is $200 more than the members' price. Parents and their children under 21 may travel on one membership. For more information or to purchase a membership, visit alumni.stanford.edu/goto/membership or call (650) 725-0692.
Deposits, Payments and Cancellations
An early deposit is required to hold space on this program until trip details are finalized. Early deposits are $1,000 per person (same as our standard deposits) and are fully refundable until 10 business days after we send you the final itinerary and pricing. Deposits and any payments then become subject to a $500-per-person cancellation fee, until the final payment due date December 19. After that date, refunds can be made only if the program is sold out and your place(s) can be resold, in which case a $1,000-per-person cancellation fee will apply.
Stanford Travel/Study provides all travelers who are U.S. or Canadian citizens with minimal medical, accident and evacuation coverage under our group-travel insurance policy. We strongly recommend that you subscribe to optional baggage and trip-cancellation insurance. A brochure offering such insurance will be mailed with your confirmation about one week after we receive your deposit. The product offered in this brochure includes special benefits if you postmark your insurance payment within a specified window: 15 days of the date listed on the confirmation letter for the Waiver of Pre-Existing Conditions and coverage for Financial Insolvency; 21 days for the Cancel for Any Reason benefit.
The Stanford Alumni Association, Stanford University and our operators act only as agents for the passenger with respect to transportation and ship arrangements and exercise every care possible in doing so. However, we can assume no liability for injury, damage, loss, accident, delay or irregularity in connection with the service of any automobile, motorcoach, launch or any other conveyance used in carrying out this program or for the acts or defaults of any company or person engaged in conveying the passenger or in carrying out the arrangements of the program. We cannot accept any responsibility for losses or additional expenses due to delay or changes in air or other services, sickness, weather, strike, war, quarantine, force majeure or other causes beyond our control. All such losses or expenses will have to be borne by the passenger as tour rates provide arrangements only for the time stated. We reserve the right to make such alterations to this published itinerary as may be deemed necessary. The right is reserved to cancel any program prior to departure in which case the entire payment will be refunded without further obligation on our part. The right is also reserved to decline to accept or retain any person as a member of the program. No refund will be made for an unused portion of any tour unless arrangements are made in sufficient time to avoid penalties. Baggage is carried at the owner's risk entirely. It is understood that the ship's ticket, when issued, shall constitute the sole contract between the passenger and the cruise company. The airlines concerned are not to be held responsible for any act, omission or event during the time passengers are not on board their plane or conveyance. Neither the Alumni Association, Stanford University nor our operators accept liability for any carrier's cancellation penalty incurred by the purchase of a nonrefundable ticket in connection with the tour. Program price is based on rates in effect at the time the brochure is printed and is subject to change without notice to reflect fluctuations in exchange rates, tariffs or fuel charges. As a condition of participation, all confirmed participants are required to sign a Release of Liability.
California Seller of Travel Program Registration #2048 523-50