8 independent reviews for Classic Cuba holiday, 11 days

Reviews for Classic Cuba holiday, 11 days

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review 6 Mar 2018

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

Horse riding in Vinales

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

Learn a bit more Spanish conversation

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

yes. benefited local people particularly as we stayed in Casas most of the time

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

Brilliant

Read the operator's response here:

Hi Rowena, Thanks for leaving such an amazing review of your trip with us to Cuba. I'm really pleased that both you and Ian enjoyed the horse riding in Vinales and staying in the Casa Particulares, we too think it's a great way to travel as you can give something back to local people and see a different side to Cuba! We look forward to speaking to you again soon about another adventure! Kind regards, Paula

review 12 Feb 2018

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

It's difficult to single out one thing as it was all memorable and exciting. However, the tour in Trinidad was about life in Cuba and was most fascinating and enlightening. Meals were very good, both at the casas and in local restaurants.

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

Remember you are in a safe country and be prepared for the friendliness and eagerness to talk to you, which may slow service sometimes. Be generous with tips. They are not asked for but we felt they were well deserved and appreciated.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

All our dealings were with local people so we could see that they were directly benefitting from our tourism.

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

We'd love to go again and stay longer.

Read the operator's response here:

Hi Gwyneth Thank you for taking the time to leave such a wonderful review. It is great to see that you loved Cuba as much as we do and you loved the way the trips support the locals, my personal favourite trip is the bici taxi tour in Cuba, it really does educate on how life in Cuba actually operates away from the more built up areas of Havana. We welcome you back to Rickshaw Travel and look forward to planning your next adventure. Kind Regards, Ross

review 16 Mar 2018

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

Very difficult to isolate one part. The most memorable was the beauty of the country and the people.

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

Make sure to specify an open top car for the Havana Tour and to be careful regarding the location of the casa particulars especially in Havana.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

To a small degree.

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

A truly memorable experience in a unique country!

review 14 Nov 2017

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

Cuba has a very different way of life -fascinating

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

It is a safe country, we never felt threatened at all. Cubans are generally very helpful and friendly with a sense of humour. It is changing quickly and we met several tourists driving themselves which we were advised not to do - but it is perfectly safe. The efficiency of all we met was much better than expected too. Taxi drivers and buses were always early without exception. Don't expect to be able to use the internet -you have to buy an access card and can only use it in designated spots where everyone else is also using it. You can be unable to log on for days at a time. Take cash -we didn't find a single place which accepted any credit card. Cuban food is not exciting and gets very monotonous. Their speciality dish is ropa veija -which translates as "old clothes" which is about right! Tips are a hassle as you only need to leave a little - but small denomination notes and coins seem to be in short supply.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The money we spent must have benefitted local people -especially the tips and eating at privately owned restaurants and casas.

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

Great

review 25 Jun 2017

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

Horseback riding in Vinales

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

Skip Trinidad or spend only a couple of days there. The best part of Trinidad is the beach around 12km away. I was also told some caves/ waterfalls nearby are good. Havana is a unique place but quite touristy, be prepared. Try to get at least 3 days in Vinales, explore the scenary on bikes, scooty or hire a car. Food quality is variable, the best place to eat is not Havana but Vinales. Be very aware of tourist traps in Havana. Also government restaurants are not always a bad thing, do explore them

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

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

The holiday was well managed by the operator and I can't fault their planning or service levels. It was a unique experience travelling in a country so staunchly communist. We saw the winds of change, quite a few locals openly unhappy with the current state of affairs. Many in Havana and Trinidad trying to make a quick buck and most of them tourist traps. Nevertheless, the people are always polite, friendly and respectful, they are also good to each other which is refreshing to see. The scenery in Vinales blew us away and we spent most of our best moments there.

review 5 Apr 2017

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

It is difficult to choose the most memorable part of my holiday as we had so many wonderful experiences! So... my top three experiences were: spending the afternoon on the beach in Trinidad, the horse-back-riding tour of the tobacco fields in Vinales, and swimming in the natural pools at El Nicho.

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

Go to Cuba sooner rather than later - there are already many tourists, especially in Vinales, so don't wait! Book all of your excursions before you go or through the tour office - we got burned booking a walking "tour" with a local "guide" organised through our casa owner. Be aware that the tipping culture in Cuba in strong: I would advise to decide how much you want to tip each person (guides, drivers, musicians in the restaurants) upfront and include that in your holiday budget. We felt that 11 days was the perfect amount of time.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes: it was evident that staying at the casa particulars directly helps the local owners. In general, tourism creates wealth for the Cuban people.

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

Wonderful!

review 2 Feb 2017

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

Havana and the opportunity to visit the wonderful museums and enjoy the daily life. Our casa was perfectly located right next to Plaza Vieja and it was very easy to get around. Our guides were absolutely terrific.. in Havana and elsewhere. All the connections were perfect...how did you do that?? We really enjoyed the museums (especially the Museum of the Revolution and the Museum of Beaux Arts/Cuban Art...terrific!), the art work, the music, the architecture. And.... the beautiful countryside, the gorgeous palm trees and vegetation around Vinales and around Soroa and La Terrazas. Walking out for hours across the tobacco fields with our lovely young guide whose environmental knowledge of flora and fauna was terrific..and who called birds for us using her AP! Cowboys casually riding down the streets....roosters and dogs everywhere. Pictures of Che and political slogans everywhere.

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

Do not take too much luggage, dress simply. No problems with insects in the winter... weather can be very warm...or drop down at night or if there is a heavy rainstorm...which there can be. Spend time planning your holiday....do you want to travel about frequently or stay at least a few days in each place. Be pragmatic and go with the flow, and appreciate the small interactions with locals..and fellow tourists..as these add so much to the journey.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We certainly hope that it did all these things. We are aware that people in the tourist industry in Cuba have more access to income than others and are concerned there may be a growing discrepancy?

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

We are not going to say we are reborn..that is impossible...and we are very lucky to have been on some other wonderful holidays too. So we are giving 4 stars but it deserves 5. We suggest you alter your wording for five stars!. The service from Ross and all the staff and partners in Cuba has been outstanding.

Read the operator's response here:

Hi Marcia Thank you for your amazing review of your trip to Cuba and for taking the time to email and speak with me about your fantastic trip. It is great that you loved our style of travel and you jumped straight in to the Cuban culture to really give yourself that authentic trip that is so important. We look forward to planning your next adventure and our services once again which we pride ourselves on. Kind Regards, Ross

review 7 Jul 2017

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

A private renter driver to visit Vinales and surroundings (Cueva del Indio, El Palenque, Mural de la Prehistoria, hotel Los Jazmines for the Mirador of the Valle de Vinales ....)

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

Avoid public transportation buses, they really do "eat" up your time. Skip "Las Terrasses" if possible (I guess that the government makes it nevertheless mandatory to visit it) because it is too artificial.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Local people certainly did benefit a lot through tips, staying overnight is some casas, .... However, this vacation was not beneficial for the environment: we did take too many "old" taxi-cars polluting enormously.

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

A nice experience going back 60 to 70 years back into time. A right moment to see these ancient buildings (almost ruins) and cars from the 50tiesbefore "McDonalds" will arrive in Cuba.

Read the operator's response here:

Hi Eddy, Many thanks, I am pleased that you and Christa both enjoyed a great time in Cuba experiencing the 50s cars and seeing Cuba before it becomes modern. There is a shortage of new cars and we encourage travellers to use group transfers instead of private taxis is to minimise the environmental impact though appreciate they do take slightly longer. A shame you did not really your time at Las Terrazas as our customers often describe this experience with a local guide to be most informative and a highlight. We are pleased to know that you felt the locals benefitted directly from your visit by staying in the carefully selected casa particulares. Kind regards, Ceri Team Leader

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