|December 1-5, 2019
The largest island in the Caribbean, Cuba is a fascinating country. With relatively little traffic, friendly and curious locals, an eternal summer, endless unspoiled coastline and a fascinating blend of cultures, it’s an ideal place to explore by bicycle. On this educational People-to-People group tour, we have many interchanges with the Cuban people we meet along the way, as well as a number of scheduled experiences designed to provide you with more insight into the culture and history of the country. We are accompanied by Cuban Cyclists who share their experiences of cycling in Cuba and give us an insight into the cycling culture of the country as well as the challenges that cyclists face.
Now is undoubtedly a fantastic time to visit Cuba to see and experience the island. Visiting Cuba is like stepping back in time as little has changed over the past 50 years. Its a fascinating place to see: a very different culture and a step back in time.
To fully enjoy the Cuban experience you should travel with a willingness to expect the unexpected and, above all, an adventurous spirit. In our opinion go now and experience this unique destination before it changes.
In city centres, from Havana to Santiago, ramshackle streets are lined with decaying colonial mansions and art deco towers, while rectangular Soviet apartment blocks dominate the suburbs. 1950s Cadillacs chug alongside horse-drawn carriages, arthritic rickshaws and sleek diplomats’ saloons, swiftly overtaken by bright yellow eggshells on motorbike chassis. Out in the countryside, from the tobacco fields to the Sierra Maestra, the highways are lined with billboards extolling the virtues of the Revolution.
Our tour starts in Havana, the capital city that was once larger than New York City! It is always a good place to gain insight into the culture of the island. The old town, Habana Vieja, is being painstakingly renovated and many of the colonial palaces have been converted into desirable boutique hotels. Others are museums and art galleries containing unrivaled treasures or Revolutionary memorabilia.
On the south coast, we also visit the beautiful city of Cienfuegos, set on a beautiful bay and filled with historic architecture.
Cultural, rhythmic and evocative, Cuba promises to be like nowhere else you’ve cycled. This vibrant Caribbean island has many steep contrasts. It boasts beautiful beaches and tropical sun, crumbling but opulent architecture, cigar-smoking Cubans who groove to salsa beats in the streets, and a revolutionary history of both triumph and oppression. Cycling through Cuba is one of the best ways to experience this fascinating country. Most Cubans travel by bike or with horse and carriage , rendering the roads relatively car free. On this adventure we spend three days biking through Western and Central Cuba’s most cultural and historically rich cities, including Havana and Cienfuegos. We experience the authentic Cuba and engage with the Cuban People, whilst immersing ourselves in it's culture and history.
Day 1 - Saturday
Welcome to Havana
We highly recommend that you book a flight that brings you into Havana earlier in the day, preferably before midday, so you have time to settle in and get your bicycle set up.
We highly recommend you book the private airport transfer, valid for two persons, from the airport to your hotel (under Optional extra purchases in at registration link). Driving time is about 25 minutes.
Welcome dinner at a private restaurant: Jardin de los Milagros with two drinks included.
Optional tour in Classic car (not included) after dinner (highly recommended)
- Accommodation at Bungalows of Comodoro Hotel, Havana, with breakfast included.
Day 2 - Sunday
Havana – Matanzas- Varadero 69 miles
Early in the morning, we´ll start the ride to Matanzas Province. In the 18th century this was a rich city thriving from sugar cane cultivation and the slave trade. It later became a rich cafe society with many poets and artists making their homes here. We will end the ride at Bacunayagua View Point and continue by bus from here to Chiquirrín Restaurant which is in Matanzas Province for lunch. In the afternoon we visit the Museum of the Pharmacy en route to Varadero where we overnight.
- Accommodation at Roc Arenas Doradas Hotel in All Inclusive Plan, Varadero
Day 3 - Monday
Varadero – Cienaga de Zapata 59 miles
Today we are cycling from the north to the south. First rest stop will be at Jovellanos town at a Cuban home and the second one at Jagüey Grande. Then, we continue to have lunch and then visit the Crocodile farm and breeding centre run by the park services .
- Accommodation at Playa Larga Hotel with breakfast included. This hotel is simple with small cottages, set on a beautiful untamed white sand beach. It's so peaceful here. (forget about the internet and truly just immerse in the present here!)
Day 4 - Tuesday
Cienaga de Zapata – Cienfuegos 66 miles
The panoramic views today will different because we will be cycling through the south shore line. You will have a panoramic view of the Caribbean Sea. Our first stop will at Playa Girón Town where there was the Cuban First Victory against the United States. We visit the Museum here that tells the story of this invasion known as the Bay of Pigs. From here the panorama will change because we will be cycling into central area. We will make a second stop at Yaguaramas. Then we will continue to Cienfuegos for a lunch time in a local Paladar
The farewell dinner will be at Doña Nora Paladar located in the Downtown.
Optional Tour: During the night our Cuban guide and our driver will be available for a walking tour . There is a famous club called Benny Moré where you can enjoy a nice show with traditional Cuban music (The visit is optional – Not included in the price).
- Accommodation at Jagua Hotel with breakfast included.
Day 5 - Wednesday
Tour with informative tour guide for the trip back to to Havana Airport (3.5 hours) for your return flight to the USA. Please note that the bus transfers are shuttle bus so the bus will leave in time to accommodate the first departing passenger from each airport. As such it could mean that you could have a longer wait at the airport for your departure, so please be prepared for this.
- Package A $1985 full payment at time of booking valid to August 30. As of Sept 1st, the rate is $2299 for late bookings if space is available. This tour will sell out early
- Package AN Payments in two parts. Deposit $985 to hold your place, with balance $1200 due by September 30. This is only possible for bookings made by August 30.
Package Rates are per person and include:
- Transportation of luggage between hotels
- 4 nights hotel accommodation based on twin/double occupancy
- 4 breakfasts
- 4 dinners
- 3 lunches
- Transportation to museums and attractions as described in the schedule
- Return transport to Havana airport on last day
- Entrance fees to attractions described in the schedule
- Tour Escort from the United States with the group at all times (requirement for US citizens)
- Tour Escort from Cuba with the group at all times (bi-lingual))
- Official tour leaders and cycling guide support: Combination of Cuban & Jamaican professional Cyclists
- Technical support ( bike mechanic) along the entire route
- Sag wagon ( support vehicle) with each group of riders.
- Certified First Aid personnel
- Refreshment stop every 20 miles - included.
- Water, Hydration fluid, Fruits and snacks included
- Official Finishers medal
If you are traveling alone, you will be automatically paired up with another person of the same gender. IF you do not wish to share a room, then there is the Optional Single supplement:US$ 495 payable at the time of registration on the Active registration system, this is found under Additional Purchases.
Additional nights post tour are not being offered at this time.
Early one day arrival can be booked. Contact us by email for information and rates.
We highly recommend you plan to arrive by midday into Havana, so as to get settled and be ready for the next day of riding.