Quick Facts

Dates:  January 13 - 18, 2021

Duration: 6 days/5 nights

Price: 

$2399 per person

Travel Category:  International 

A valid passport with at least 6 months validity after the date of travel is required. 

 

Group size:  20

Payments:

12/15/2019 $300 - DEPOSIT

1/15/2020 $262

2/15/2020 $262

3/15/2020 $262

4/15/2020 $262

5/15/2020 $262

6/15/2020 $262

7/15/2020 $262

8/15/2020 $265 - FINAL PAYMENT

Included:

  • Transfers from airport/hotel/airport

  • People-to-people General License issued by OFAC Authorized US Sponsor

  • Havana Jazz Festival Pass

  • 9 Meals 

  • Luxury Air-conditioned Motor Coach

  • English Speaking Guide

  • 5-Star Melia Cohiba by Melia Hotels

  • Guided Tours of Old Havana and Vinales Valley & Town

  • Guided Tours of Partagas Cigar Factory, Hemingway Attractions and Havana Art School.

  • Visit 2 UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Old Havana and Vinales Valley

Not Included:

  • Round Trip flights (can be added)

  • Gratuities/Tips

  • Personal expenses

  • Travel insurance

Prices are per person and payment plan is based on double occupancy. The single room supplement is $600. All prices are expressed in US dollars. Travel insurance is highly recommended. 

All bookings require a deposit. Your deposit is fully refundable up until the first day of the payment plan. After payment plan begins all deposits are non-refundable and non-transferable. All payments, except the deposit, are refundable. The trip becomes 100% non-refundable after the final payment date. Refunds are processed immediately but can take up to 30 days for you to receive depending on your bank.

Price is subject to change after September 15th, 2020. By making payment you agree to the terms and conditions.

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Meet-up in Havana Cuba for The Havana Jazz Festival. Welcome to Havana, an open-air museum city that can be a jarring collision of historical and modern scenes at times and bursting with spellbinding music for sure. Your jazz festival Cuba tour begins! 

 

The Jazz festival of Havana also known as “Jazz Plaza” dates back from 1963.  The Leonardo Timor Jazz Big Band was at the epicenter of the event which marked an awakening of the Cuban jazz scene at the time. This jazz event has helped to bring attention to many Cuban musicians. Many of the Cuban artists who have performed at Jazz Plaza have gone on to be nominated for and even receive Grammy awards within the Latin Jazz category, with Chucho Valdes certainly remaining among the most globally renowned of them all.

Cuba has consistently produced legendary jazz musicians like trumpet player Arturo Sandoval and sax player Paquito Rivera, former members of Cuba’s Irakere, a Grammy Award Cuban band founded by Chucho Valdez. Again, no surprise here as Cuba is the birthplace of the Latin Jazz, a combination of the Afro-Cuban clave beat, different Cuban rhythms and jazz harmonies. 

A Look Back

The 33rd International Jazz Festival of Havana “Jazz Plaza 2018” took place in January. It drew the largest number of US musicians in its 30 plus year history. US jazz singer Dee Dee Bridgewater and Grammy award winning US saxophonist Ted Nash delivered powerful performances. It also broke records of attendance by American jazz fans that were in attendance in record numbers at the numerous prestigious Havana venues that hosted the international jazz event such as the National Theatre of Cuba, the Havana’s Mella Theatre and Casa de la Cultura de Plaza.

celia cruz - An Autobiography
dayme arocena
Arturo Sandoval
omar sosa
Paquito D'rivera

Itinerary

Day One: Wednesday January 13

Arrive in Havana and meet your tour manager and motor coach driver. Enjoy a ride to your hotel the 5-star Melia Cohiba Hotel, located in the Vedado District, Havana’s Downtown core and the cultural powerhouse of the Cuba’s capital. All theatres, concert halls, and clubs hosting the Cuba jazz festival are located here. Many of Havana’s larger attractions are also located in the Vedado district, so it’s an essential part of any visit not only to the Havana Jazz Festival but to Havana.  Jazz travelers to Cuba can walk, take a 5-minute taxi ride or complimentary bus ride to all the venues hosting the Havana Jazz Festival “Jazz Plaza 2019”. 

Day Two: Thursday January 14

Enjoy breakfast (included in price) anytime from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.  

In the morning join a guided tour of the cigar factory, Real Fabrica de Tabacos Partagas. Built in the 1850s at the boundaries of Old Havana, the neoclassical 4-story building with the Partagas name crowning the roofline of the-orange-and-cream facade is an emblematic architectural landmark of Havana city. The Partagas cigar factory is more than an emblematic building; it is a beacon to Cigar aficionados around the world.

An authentic Cuban lunch will be held at La Mina restaurant while listening to live Cuban music. 

In the afternoon we visit the UNESCO World Heritage site, Old Havana, on a 2 hour walking tour. At 500 years young, Old Havana is the largest and best preserved colonial core in Latin America. The distinctive colonial plazas, Plaza de Armas, Plaza de La Catedral, Plaza de San Francisco or Plaza Vieja are surrounded by an impressive array of historical buildings like the San Cristobal Cathedral of Havana, the Palace of the Captain Generals or the Fortress of the Royal Force. 

In the evening explore your first night of the Havana Jazz Festival.  There will be an array of concerts that explode through the city during the 5 nights of the event. Before departure you will receive the Official Havana Jazz Schedule 2019 so that you have an idea of the jazz concerts you will attend.

Day Three: Friday January 15

Enjoy breakfast (included in price) anytime from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. 

 

Located on the edge of Western Havana, you will visit the Cuban Art Schools which were conceived during the early days of the Cuban Revolution to bring arts education to underprivileged Cubans. Today the five-school compound is revered as landmarks of modern Cuban architecture. The Cuban Art Schools are listed on the World Monument Watchlist today as two of the structures are in desperate need of restoration. Some of the talented Cuban music students rehearsing during your visit could be Cuba’s jazz stars of tomorrow! 

Next visit is to Cojimar – a humble fishing town in Eastern Havana. This town inspired Ernest Hemingway to write one of the bestselling novels of the 20th century, "The Old Man and The Sea".  Before leaving, you will have lunch at Las Terrazas, Hemingway’s preferred bar restaurant in Cojimar. 

In the afternoon you will visit Finca La Vigia (La Vigia Farmhouse) - Ernest Hemingway's home of 20 years. Nestled in the heart of a Havana’s humble town, San Francisco de Paula, this unique property is the Ernest Hemingway Museum today.  This 19th century property that Ernest Hemingway bought in

1940 has typewriters, books, pictures, hunting trophies and other possessions that have sat undisturbed by time and visitors since 1959. 

In the evening after dinner on your own, enjoy the magic of Havana city at night as you explore the array of venues hosting the Cuba’s Jazz Plaza 2019.

Day Four: Saturday January 16

Enjoy breakfast (included in price) anytime from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. 

You will journey on a  2hr bus ride to UNESCO World Heritage site, Vinales Valley where tobacco fields and tobacco drying houses in this region grow the best tobacco in the world. Meeting with farmers as they go about their daily routines is a great chance to learn more about the life of ordinary Cuban farmers in the countryside.   

Next you will descend into the Indian Cave –former burial grounds of the Guanahatabey people, aboriginals of this area before the arrival of the Spaniards. After a guided boat ride through the underground river, you will exit through a gift shop. 

Lunchtime will be at  Mural de La Prehistoria where the house band will perform as patrons do the Salsa in the shaded restaurant that serves the most palate-tickling roasted pork with authentic Cuban countryside side dishes. This restaurant is named after an oversize painting titled Mural de La Prehistoria (Prehistoric Mural) that depicts the geological evolution of the region through snails, humanoid figures and dinosaurs somehow inspired by fossils unearthed in the Vinales Valley. 

You will head back to Havana for dinner on your own and to get ready for a night  at Havana Jazz Festival events and concerts.

Day Five: Sunday January 17

Enjoy breakfast (included in price) anytime from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. 

 

Our first visit will be to the seaside town of Jaimanitas, not a mainstream destination for Cuba’s tourism, the place Jose Fuster calls home. For over a decade, this authentic Cuban artist has been decorating every single standing structure in town.  Enjoy lunch with the artist's team. 

In the afternoon visit Callejon de Hamel the famous Afro-Cuban inspired gaudy alley which reinvents itself every day under the artistic direction of Salvador Gonzales, a Cuban muralist whose work can also be found in New York’s buildings. Listen and dance to rumba music 

In the evening attend the closing ceremony of the 34th International Jazz Festival of Havana 2019. 

Day Six: Monday January 18

Enjoy breakfast (included in price) anytime from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. 

 

Today marks the end of our Cuba Jazz adventure. Your Cuban guide and bus driver will escort you to the International Airport for departure. 

photo credit:  https://www.melia.com

5 star hotel within walking distance of the famous Malecon drive

Melia Cohiba Hotel

Privileged location in the modern Vedado district. Modern rooms with spectacular views of the ocean, city and majestic Malecon ocean drive. Buffet, gourmet, Italian and grill restaurants. Habana Café with memorabilia evoking the 1950`s.

Noteworthy rumba music and art

Callejon de Hamel

Located in an alleyway near the University of Havana, Callejon de Hamel is the epicenter of artwork by cuban artist Salvador Gonzáles Escalona.  His work is known as an "afro-cuban" style. He describes his work as a mix of surrealismcubism and abstract art. Today there are workshops for young Cuban children to learn painting. Every Sunday there are rumba performances, and every Friday Cuban music in the street.

photo credits: 

By DuendeThumb - Donated to Creative Commons by author John Loomis, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=14906270

 Buildings are outstanding architectural achievements of the Cuban Revolution

Cuba's Art Schools

Cuba's National Art Schools (Escuelas Nacionales de Arte, now known as the Instituto Superior de Arte) are considered by historians to be among the most outstanding architectural achievements of the Cuban Revolution. These innovative, organic Catalan-vaulted brick and terra-cotta structures were built on the site of a former country club in the far western Havana suburb of Cubanacán, which used to be Havana's "Beverly Hills" and was then mainly reserved for Communist Party officials. This site was added to the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List on February 28, 2003 in the Cultural category

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