Exploring the Island's Past, Present & Future

Ho
Heart of Travel
  • Facebook verified
59 reviews
Nov 10 - 17, 2023
Group size: 6 - 12
Exploring the Island's Past, Present & Future
Caribbean

Heart of Travel
  • Facebook verified
59 reviews

$NaN
Nov 10 - 17, 2023
Group size: 6 - 12

About this trip

** Scroll down this page to view the complete, day by day, itinerary**


Please note that why travel to the island IS legal for US citizens, using the name of the country on the trip description page can cause problems for our third-party payment processor. Therefore, we will be referring to the country as "the island" on this itinerary and its people as "the islanders". 


The island is easily one of the most unique and interesting destinations to visit in all of Latin America, if not the world. While you may come here looking for answers, you're more than likely to return home with even more questions. The island's vibrant culture is reflected in its art, music, dance, food, drink, and overall energy. However, it's important to recognize the struggles that islanders have been facing for years, with their fate in the hands of an oppressive government and the outdated US embargo. 


In recent years, islanders, both on and off the island, have been raising their voices and demanding change on the island. The government's response to the July 2021 protest was a direct violation of human rights as they censored citizens,  reduced access to resources such as the internet and electricity, and wrongfully imprisoned civilians for peaceful protest and personal expression. The decision to resume tours to the island was not taken lightly, but we eventually decided it was ultimately in the best interest of our local operators on the island to resume tours to the island and continue with our mission to educate people about the island.


Heart of Travel's trip gives you the opportunity to hear a variety of experiences and perspectives directly from islanders as we discuss the island's history, politics, economy, and current events. All of the activities on our trip are designed to support small, privately owned businesses and individual freelancers. We will not be staying in any government-owned hotels or eating in government restaurants and we will get absolutely as much of every cent possible directly into the hands of civilians and not government-operated businesses. 


Our island tours immediately immerse you as you settle into your "casa particular" owned and run by a local family. From there you will jump into learning about the island's historic and cultural past and present while traveling throughout both urban and rural parts of the island. Our in-country host families, local guides, and drivers look forward to sharing the real island with you! 

What’s included

  • 7 nights accommodation
    Private room + bathroom inside casa particulares
  • 15 meals
    Includes one beverage at each meal
  • In country transport
    Ground, air, water as indicated on itinerary
  • Entrance + guide fees
    For all activities included on the itinerary
  • 24/7 access + support
    Provided by bilingual Heart of Travel Tour Leader
  • 5 DAY EXTENSION ONLY
    5 nights accommodation in casas particulares
  • 5 DAY EXTENSION ONLY
    12 additional meals
  • International airfare
    To/from the island
  • Travel Medical Insurance
    Required, usually included in flight. We will provide assistance
  • Tourist Card/Visa
    You can purchase at airport on departure day or in advance online. We will provide assistance
  • Meals not stated
    Any meals not indicated on itinerary
  • Trip insurance
    Recommended, not required
  • Tips
    To local guides

Available Packages

8 day/7 night: Double Occupancy
Available until May 15, 2023only 3 left

Per person price when booking a double occupancy spot for an 8-day/7 night trip 

$2,750
Deposit: $750
8 day/7 night: Single Occupancy
Available until May 15, 2023only 3 left

Per person price when booking single-occupancy spot for an 8 day/7 night trip 

$2,995
Deposit: $750
13 day/12 night: Double Occupancy
Available until May 15, 2023only 3 left

Per person price when booking a double occupancy spot for a 13 day/12 night

$3,495
Deposit: $1,000
13 day/12 night: Single Occupancy
Available until May 15, 2023only 3 left

Per person price when booking a single occupancy spot for a 13-day/12 night trip

$3,850
Deposit: $1,000

Available options

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Itinerary

Day One
Welcome to the Island

Upon arriving at the airport, one of our Program Directors will be waiting to greet you. They will then accompany you to the capital's historic center to get settled into your casa particular. You will then be given a brief orientation to the neighborhood. 

That evening we will all enjoy a welcome dinner during which travelers can get to know one another and the guides better as we discuss the itinerary for the following days. 


We'll later get into the spirit of the island with cocktails and live music at one of the historic center's most iconic, privately owned, bars just steps from the Capitol! 

Your Organizer


Ho
Heart of Travel
59 reviews
The Heart of Travel was born out of a deep-rooted love and passion for travel, art, history, food, nature, culture and adventure as well as a call to give back to the communities and people that had already provided us with so much. The travel industry has long been bombarded with double decker tour busses, beach front resorts and cruise ships, often at the expense of the local communities. As a response to this failing system, we began a boutique travel company that allows clients to explore new places in an authentic and non-touristy way, offering travelers a more intimate and unique experience all while removing the stress and hassle of researching, planning, bargain hunting, reserving and more that goes along with planning a trip or vacation.

Reviews

It was a very pleasant trip, with a well balanced combination of activities. There was the Sunday bike ride on closed-to-car-traffic Reforma Blvd, visits to neighborhoods and coffee shops (including as a site for one of our many Spanish lessons!), visits to the main parks, several museums (Frida Kahlo, Palacio des Bellas Artes, and the Anthropology Museum), artisanal markets, the historic district, Xochimilco, Teotihuacan, Ballet Folklorico. To name a few of our outings! There were also quite a number of absolutely fabulous restaurants (lunch or dinner). Dominique prepared an excellent Spanish workbook directly related to our activities which was very helpful and explored new vocabulary and expressions for an intermediate level of students. Our local guide Daniel was extremely knowledgeable and Dominique and Eimy (both with Heart of Travel) were both very attentive to the needs of the group. The fact that Dominique has lived in Mexico City was also helpful. We did a lot of activities - but not too many! The pace was good. There was adequate solo time. I would definitely go on another trip with Heart of Travel!
By Barbara G for Intermediate Spanish Immersion in Mexico City on 26 Sep, 2022
PF
Just the right amount of time. Suggest 1 day less in Barcelona, 1 day more in Madrid. HeartofTravel is special for its personalized services before, during and after trip
By Pamela F for Sampling History, Art, Culture & Cuisine in Spain: Pam and Randy on 26 Sep, 2022
Very accommodating to our request to add extra nights to our Barcelona trip. Hotel room was very comfortable. Chelsea and Pamela were a great help in directing us to activities for our extra days.
By Lynn M for Additional Night(s) in Barcelona on 20 Sep, 2022
This was my first organized tour. I absolutely loved it! I had such a great time and enjoyed the places we went and the food we ate on this tour. Eimy, ,Dominique and Daniel were the best guides! Especially thought Eimy did a wonderful job taking care of us all with whatever was needed. Daniel is so passionate and knowledgeable about the history of Mexico, that I learned so much from him. Dominique’s class materials were so helpful to me. She really helped me with pronunciation and reading, which was much appreciated. I am definitely going to do another trip in the future! Muchas Gracias, Sharon Wright
By Sharon W for Intermediate Spanish Immersion in Mexico City on 19 Sep, 2022
BR
This was my fourth trip with Heart of Travel and as always, it did not disappoint! The accommodations, excursions, restaurants, and communication were all top notch. Daniel was very knowledgeable and hilarious. Traveling with Heart of Travel is not the typical touristy trip - they take the time to expose you to the locals, where you learn the history and culture of each place firsthand. It’s an authentic experience each time.
By Barbra R for Intermediate Spanish Immersion in Mexico City on 19 Sep, 2022
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