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2024 Culture & Nature Tour of Cuba

Custom WBU FAM itinerary designed for an 8-day tour


Mariah Travel, LLC is proud to offer a Culture, Nature & Birding tour of Cuba. Cuba is larger than life! Whether it’s the sultry rhythms, the wisps of cigar smoke wafting in the air, the beautifully weathered Baroque facades, or just the warm smiles and beautiful faces of the Cuban people, once you experience Cuba, something in you changes.


Mariah Travel is licensed by the U.S. Department of Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) to organize and conduct legal People-to-People travel to Cuba. A copy of the license is included with each registration. These exclusive tours engage participants with the warm beautiful people of Cuba along with a strong emphasis on culture and nature. You will experience Cuba in a most personal way, through the eyes of the Cubans. We meet with local biologists and naturalists as we visit reserves and other nature areas where Cuban endemic species as well as specialty bird species are located.


Our guides are the best in Cuba. By partnering with the Natural History Museum of Cuba and the University of Havana, we have access to historians, biologists, master birders, educators, and researchers that know the best of Cuba.


Program inspiration, concept and design is modeled on similar international natural history trips organized by Mariah Travel, LLC – voted “One of North America’s Best Wildlife Tour Companies” by the National Wildlife Federation.

Available Dates for 2024*


Late Spring dates: June 1-8;   June 8-15;   June 15-22;   June 22-29

*Summer visits are not recommended due to intense heat, below average birding and hurricanes.


Fall Dates: Nov. 2-9;  Nov. 9-16;  Nov. 16-23;  Nov. 30-Dec. 7  



Proposed Daily Itinerary


DAY 1: Arrive Havana!

•  Arrive Jose Marti International Airport, retrieve baggage, clear customs.

•  Meet with a Mariah Travel representative and transfer to Habana Vieja.

•  Informal introduction to Cuba and an overview of the week’s activities.

•  Welcome dinner at a local Paladar (private restaurant – included)

•  Overnight at La Posada de Chacon or similar.


DAY 2: Havana Walking Tour & Museum Visits

• Breakfast included at the casa.

• Walking tour of Habana Vieja with EAC’s Cuban guide, visiting the four historic plazas.

• Lunch on your own at one of the excellent local paladares (private restaurant).

• Visit the Museum of Natural History*. The Museum highlights a unique collection of Cuba’s endemic species, including the world’s smallest bird, the Bee Hummingbird or Zunzuncito. 

• Depending on schedule, visit to Ernest Hemingway’s Finca Virga

• Visit with local Cubans to discuss their art, music, cars, etc. Afternoon free to explore.

• Dinner on your own at one of the excellent local paladares.

• Overnight at La Posada de Chacon or similar.


DAY 3: Las Terrazas, Vinales Valley and the Sierra de los Organos

• Breakfast included at the casa.

• Morning departure to Las Terrazas eco-community west of Havana. Observe the successful Cuban land restoration project originated during the Castro administration. A local ecologist-guide will join the group and present an overview of the area. Wonderful birding opportunities.

• Lunch at Casa del Campesino on the banks of the Río San Juan. (included)

• Continue to the Vinales Valley in the Sierra de los Organos mountains for an introduction to Cuba’s natural history and endemic bird species by our local guide.

• Explore the town of Vinales and interact and support the Cuban people.

• Dinner on your own at one of the excellent local paladares

• Overnight: Villa La Terrazas, Vinales


DAY 4: Birding Vinales Valley and return to Havana

• Early breakfast included at the casa.

• Enjoy an early morning of birding in the Viñales Valley, situated in Sierra de los Organos, over 130 bird species have been reported here.

• Enjoy a delicious lunch at one of the excellent paladars. (Included)

• Afternoon departure to Havana.

• Free afternoon to explore on your own. Your guide will offer recommendation and assist with transportation.

• Dinner on your own at one of the excellent local paladares

• Overnight at La Posada de Chacon or similar.


DAY 5: Playa Larga and Parque Nacional Ciénaga de Zapata

• Breakfast included at the casa.

• Departure to Playa Larga - Playa Girón (Bay of Pigs) Approx. 2-hour drive.

• Lunch at a local paladar in Playa Larga. (included)

• Meet your guide and a departure to Zapata Swamp, Ciénaga de Zapata, located on the Zapata Peninsula in the southern Matanzas province of Cuba. This area is over 6,000 km² and is the largest protected area in Cuba, and in the Caribbean. The swamp, known for its size and

diversity, was designated as a “Wetland of International Importance” in 2001. Home to many of Cuba’s endemic, enjoy an afternoon of incredible birding.

• Dinner on your own at one of the excellent local paladares. Your guide will have recommendations.

• Overnight: Casa Ana Birding, Playa Larga



Zapata Peninsula is, undoubtedly, the best bird watching area in Cuba, and possibly the entire Caribbean region. It supports all but three of Cuba’s 23 avian endemics, as well as many other native species, both winter residents and transients, along with several summer and spring visitors can be found. Over 260 species have been reported in the area.


DAY 6: Cienfuegos and Trinidad

• Breakfast included at the casa.

• Travel along the Southern Caribbean Coast of Cuba to Trinidad.

• Explore Cienfuegos and the beauty of the architecture and gardens.

• Enjoy a lunch at a local paladar and enjoy the afternoon to explore the area!

• In Trinidad, tour of the town and the breathtaking Valle de los Ingenios.

• Dinner on your own at one of the many excellent paladar restaurants.

• Later, dance the night away at the Casa de Musica.

• Overnight: Casa Yahima y Ariel, Trinidad


DAY 7: Havana, Museum of the Revolution, Musical Evening!

• Breakfast included at the casa.

• Depart for Havana, arriving early afternoon. Lunch taken along the route to Havana.

• Time permitting,  visit to the Museum of the Revolution for a look into the mission of Fidel Castro and Che Guevara and the turning point for Cuba and her people.  

• Optional dinner and a musical evening with the world-famous Buena Vista Social Club or the Tropicana Cabaret, running continuously since 1933!

• Overnight: La Posada de Chacon or similar.


DAY 8: Adios Cuba! I'm certain you'll return soon...

• Breakfast included at the casa.

• Depart for Jose Marti Airport for flight home.


COST:            WBU Staff Member, $1495 (one per store)*

                        * WBU Staff cost with 4 fully paid travelers.

                        * One WBU Staff Travels Free with 6 fully paid travelers!

                        WBU Companion, $2295 per person. No single supplement.


Included in cost:

• Cuba Travel Visa

• Cuba accommodations in casa particulars (privately owned lodging)

• Airport R/T transfers, transportation to areas in itinerary

• Professional English-speaking Cuban guide services

• Meals as mentioned in the itinerary

• Entrance fees for museums and exhibits  

• Department of Treasury, OFAC license and authorization letter for legal Cuba travel.

   OFAC Cuba License No. CT-2013-305326-2

• Mandatory Cuban medical insurance


Not included in cost:

• Airfare to Havana (Mariah will assist with arranging the best flights)

• Lodging or meals in Miami or departure city

• Meals in Cuba other than as listed as included in itinerary

• Any personal items

• Transportation other than mentioned in itinerary

• Alcohol beverages other than what is included with meals. Most lunch and dinner meals include a choice of wine, beer, mojito, or Cuba Libre.

• Gratuities for guide(s), wait staff, baggage assistance, housekeeping, etc.

            Visit for more information


• Travel cancellation insurance (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED) *

            *Mariah Travel works with USI Travel Insurance Services with no add-on costs.


PLEASE NOTE: US Passports MUST be valid for 6 months after your arrival date to Cuba


This itinerary is subject to change and probably will. Cuba is a wonderful country with beautiful people and natural/cultural beauty, however sometimes things simply do not go as planned. Flexibility and patience are key.


As always, your health & safety is our #1 concern. I hope you will feel comfortable trusting Mariah Travel to ensure your well-being while traveling.

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