Essence of Cuba

Private Tours
  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Accommodation

Discover the real Cuba with the help of your private English-speaking driver-guide. Your journey begins in Havana, Cuba's world-famous capital, where you can wander history-rich streets and soak up the vibrant energy before moving on to Trinidad, a giant colonial village wedged between the towering Escambray mountain range and the shimmering Caribbean coast. A stop in seaside Cienfuegos along the way will reveal a colourful Francophile architecture. You’ll have a few days to explore UNESCO World Heritage-listed Trinidad before making your way back to Havana. You’ll stop at Santa Clara, a key location in the history of the Cuban Revolution and home to the Che Guevara Mausoleum, on the way. This is just a taste of what of what we have to offer. All the Cuba holidays on our website can be tailor-made to your exact needs. Please get in touch with your travel consultant to personalise.


from / per person

Includes international flights

  • Havana + Trinidad + Cienfuegos + Santa Clara
  • 7 nights



With our own on-the-ground team in Cuba, you'll benefit from the support and advice of highly-trained, friendly, English-speaking reps. Based in Havana, Varadero, Viñales and Trinidad, our Cuba Direct reps will ensure that your holiday runs smoothly from beginning to end, giving you peace of mind.

Personalise this itinerary or build a tailor-made tour from scratch by calling us on 0207 148 3042

Day 1: Havana

Arrival in Havana

If you'd like to arrange your flights, please get in touch. We can get you good prices and convenient upgrades in a choice of airlines including Virgin Atlantic, Air Europa, Air France, KLM flying from most airports in the UK.

Meet & Greet at Havana Airport

A Cuba Direct representative will welcome you at the airport and invite you to our Welcome Briefing Meeting. They will be your first point of contact in Cuba and will provide you with an emergency number. They can assist you in booking excursions and day trips, and share valuable local information.

Private Transfer to Havana

You will transfer to your accommodation in a modern, air-conditioned car. Enjoy your first glimpses of the city and take in its electric atmosphere!

Havana, at Leisure

Give in to the seductive rhythm of Cuba’s capital City; Havana, and a discover a world of Cuban hospitality and old-world charm.

Day 2: Havana Old and New Tour

Today you will get acquainted with Cuba's capital city by taking a guided walking tour through the crumbling splendour of the historic neighbourhood of Habana Vieja (Old Havana), a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Wars and revolution have done little to damage its heritage, making it the finest example of a Spanish colonial city anywhere in the Americas. Stops on the tour include the impressive Museum of the Revolution, a tobacco house to see the cigar rolling techniques of the most famous cigars in the world, and the Havana Club Rum Museum for an insight into the history of Cuba’s most famous drink; as well as a chance to sample its delights! Lunch will be provided in an authentic Cuban restaurant.

Days 3-5: Cienfuegos and Trinidad

Day 3: Cienfuegos

This morning you will be taken to Trinidad, southeast of Havana. Along the way, we’ll include a stop at the Peninsula de Zapata for a visit to a local crocodile farm before arriving in the colonial port city Cienfuegos. Here you will enjoy lunch at a local restaurant, then embark on a guided tour of this laid back maritime city, known as the 'Pearl of the South', due to its lovely location on a picturesque Caribbean bay. You’ll see the city’s well preserved colonial centre and learn about its proud musical tradition and its famous musicians such as Benny More. You will arrive in Trinidad in the late afternoon.

Day 4: Highlights of Trinidad Tour

Trinidad, often referred to as the Soul of Cuba, is a highlight of the island and today we’ll include a walking tour of the main sights of the town. Founded in 1514 by the Spanish conquistador Diego Velasquez, Trinidad was, for two hundred years, a major centre for trading sugar and slaves. The wealth generated by the landowners during the region's dark past is reflected by the stunning colonial architecture found in Trinidad's historic centre, which has been completely restored and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. After exploring the cobbled streets of the town, and having lunch in a local restaurant, you may wish to consider a short trip out Playa Ancón, the beautiful beach just a few miles out of town – your guide/driver will be happy to take you. In the evening check out an Afro-Cuban cultural performance or some traditional live music before perhaps heading to the Disco Ayala – a local nightclub located in a cave!

Day 5: At Leisure

Today is at your leisure to relax on the beautiful beaches of Playa Ancon or further explore the town. If you’re feeling more energetic you could consider a day trip to the Gran Parque Natural Topes de Collantes, a forested natural park known for its hiking and bird watching where you’ll also find refreshing rivers and waterfalls where you can swim. There are several other interesting places locally that your guide/driver can take you to.

Day 6-8: Santa Clara and Havana

Day 6: Trinidad - Santa Clara - Havana

Today we will return to Havana via the city of Santa Clara, a key location in the history of the Cuban Revolution. We visit several fascinating historical sites, including the massive Che Guevara monument and mausoleum, his final resting place. After lunch in a Cuban restaurant you will return to Havana to enjoy your last two nights in the Cuban capital.

Day 7: Havana

Soak up the vibrant culture and rich history of Havana on your final full-day in Cuba.

Day 8: Transfer Havana Hotel to Havana Airport

Around lunchtime you’ll be collected from your hotel and taken back to Havana International Airport. You will arrive with enough time to check in your flight at one of the airline desks, clear immigration, and enjoy some snacks at the airport lounge before boarding your flight back to the UK.

Hotel Sevilla

Located on a calm street in Old Havana next to Paseo del Prado, the Hotel Sevilla is just five minutes away from the historic centre and the Old Quarter's main. Built in 1880, Hotel Sevilla stands out due to its unique architecture and exquisite decor, inspired by the Moorish motifs of the Alhambra Palace in Granada, Spain. The hotel offers a number of excellent services and facilities (including a street-level pool flanked by palm trees, and evening entertainment on a stunning rooftop terrace). Owned by a Uruguayan gangster in the 1940s, the hotel has a rich history, and has welcomed a series of notable guests (including Al Capone, Enrique Caruso and Josephine Barker). The Hotel Sevilla is an irresistible choice as it is one of the few 4 star hotels in Old Havana with a pool.

Casa Osmary y Alberto

Easily spotted thanks to its bright-pink exterior, Osmary y Alberto is one of Trinidad’s largest and finest casas particulares. Its simple, comfortable rooms are dotted around a pretty courtyard full of greenery and woven hammocks for relaxing. The location is fantastic, with the main square just a short-walk away, though the excellent on-site restaurant and bar make a night-in a tempting option. The friendly owners can even organise private salsa dance lessons to be enjoyed on the grounds, best enjoyed before a round of Alberto’s cocktails!

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