Small group tours to Cuba

COUNTRY:
Cuba
DEPARTURES:
2014: 24 Jul, 16 Oct, 4 Dec
PRICE:
From £0 (15 days) including UK flights
MORE INFO:
From £1708 excluding flights. Price is per person, based on 2 people sharing, and includes: • Company tour leader • Internal flights • Transfers in Latin America for transatlantic flights on tour dates (for those who have booked the journey inclusive of flights) • Transport and accommodation • Meals and excursions as specified in the tour profile
LATE AVAIL:
Spaces still available on the 24th July
VOUCHERS:
Gift vouchers can be used with this holiday
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Small group tours to Cuba

Small group tours to Cuba

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The story of the provider of Small group tours to Cuba

Our founders Chris and Brian first met while living in Brazil, where they came up with the idea of joining forces to offer holidays to what was then the little-visited continent that they both knew and loved. What started in 1980 as a two-man, one-telephone operation swiftly grew to a company of over 60 employees, all sharing Chris and Brian’s passion and their ethos of sustainable and responsible tourism. Now, more than 30 years on, we are the UK’s foremost and best-established specialists in travel to Latin America, offering the most extensive range of holidays throughout the region and unrivalled expertise in creating both tailor-made trips and group tours. The company is still completely independent and Chris and Brian still work full-time. Their motivation, like that of the company, hasn’t changed: experience, knowledge and passion are what we are all about.

Holiday provider no: 1261

Small group tours to Cuba

Reviewed 13 Jan 2010 by Lloyd Martin4 star rating

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Meeting the local people - they were genuinely warm and friendly. To be honest I was suspicious of their approaches at first, expecting the usual follow up request for money etc but they just wanted to chat, practice their English ... and help me with my Spanish!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


As with most holidays, I took old clothes with me that I would not normally wear in UK so that I did not have to return with them. Towards the end of the holiday I gave bags of clothes to those wanting them. It was not encouraging begging but did re-use/recycle un-wanted goods.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


The Parakeet holiday features many "home-stays" rather than hotels. This was not only giving money directly to the "owners" but also promoting trade with local farmers as the farmers would sell their excess produce to cater for the tourists. Much of the travel was also by local taxi or bicycle rather than the state run buses.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


A very enjoyable experience ... I have no reservations about visiting again or recommending it to others.
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Holiday Reviews

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Small group adventure holiday
This trip is run by a company which specialises in only Central and South America holidays. Typically you will be sharing your experiences with between 4-20 like minded travellers (depending on the trip and how many others are booked on it) and you'll have a group leader with you. Whether you are travelling alone, with your partner or with friends its good value, and a great way to meet new people! While itineraries are pre-planned there is some flexibility and you'll have plenty of privacy. This trip will appeal to travellers of all ages who enjoy meeting new people as well as seeing new places, whilst being led by a knowledgeable and enthusiastic leader.

Responsible travel: Small group tours to Cuba

Environment

On our small group tours to Cuba we visit and support the conservation of several National Parks, including Topes de Collantes in the Sierra Escambray; the Humboldt National Park outside of Baracoa; and Turquino National Park in the Sierra Maestra mountains. By paying entrance fees and hiring local guides within these parks, we encourage the continued preservation and research of these areas.

We visit and support the community project of Las Terrazas in the Sierra del Rosario UNESCO biosphere reserve. This is Cuba’s premier centre for ecotourism, which offers the chance to get a little bit closer to the local community, who coexist harmoniously with their surroundings. The model community was set up as part of a reforestation project and also as a scheme to promote self sufficiency and education in rural areas.

Community

Much of the accommodation on this tour is in private Cuban houses, known as casas particulars. Many Cubans open their homes to travellers to supplement their income with dollars, meaning they can buy many goods not available in local currency – clothes, toothpaste, shampoo etc. Similarly, we also endeavour to eat in ‘paladars’, private homes that serve tourists a hearty, local meal and provide an opportunity for Cubans to earn a living.

Our style of travel ensures that as many local people as possible benefit by our being there. This tour runs with a maximum of 16 people which helps to minimise the impact on delicate environments. Clients joining this tour are encouraged (at their own discretion) to take gifts of everyday items which can be hard to come by in Cuba and are often very costly.

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