Travel Impressions’ New Cuba Tours Launch Monday

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Travel Impressions is launching two new Cuba people to people tours next Monday.
Travel Impressions is launching two new Cuba people to people tours next Monday.

Next Monday, Travel Impressions will be launching two new Cuba people to people tours—one direct from JFK, the other from Miami.

The 8-day Expressions of Cuba departs from New York and includes Varadero, which many Cubans—my parents included—say has the most beautiful stretch of beach in the world. The trip includes four nights in Havana and a 3-night hotel stay in Varadero. Clients will also have the opportunity to hop into an antique car to La Casa Restaurante for dinner; have lunch at an organic farm, El Paraiso, overlooking the Valle del Silencio; take a boat ride through Cueva del Indio’s underground river; enjoy poolside salsa lessons; and take part in rum and cigar tasting, as well as visit the countryside and Matanzas.

The Miami direct tour, meanwhile, is the 11-day Rhythms of Cuba, with six nights in Havana and three in Cayo Santa Maria—”these keys,” says Jacqueline Kuehnel, v.p., product development, Apple Leisure Group, “are absolutely stunning.” There are also visits to Cienfuegos, Santa Clara, and Remedios. On this tour, clients will view a cannon firing ceremony at La Cabana; get a bird’s-eye view of the Yumuri Valley; take in a Buena Vista Social Club performance and experience a farm-to-table cooking lesson.

The tours, notes Kuehnel, is not inexpensive, but it’s practically all-inclusive and allows for a 6-passenger minimum. Included are meals as indicated in the itinerary; accommodations, including the overnight in Miami; 24-hour tour director; visa; tips; air and more.

So how does Travel Impressions’ Cuba offerings differentiate from Apple Vacations’ offerings? “Travel Impressions goes after more affluent travelers,” notes president and CEO Jeff Clarke, so it’s going to be smaller groups and a longer itinerary.

Notes Kuehnel, “The world wants to go to Cuba before it gets ‘ruined’ once the Americans start arriving.”

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