Congregation B'nai Emet
Mission to Cuba
Led by Rabbi Michele Paskow
November 5-13, 2019

Tour Rates & Dates:

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Tour Overview:

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1 night Courtyard by Marriott Airport Hotel, Miami
5 nights Melia Cohiba Hotel, Havana
2 nights Melia San Carlos, Cienfuegos, Cuba
All touring and sightseeing in a deluxe air-conditioned vehicle with an expert English-speaking guide
Breakfast daily
6 dinners, including Shabbat dinner in Havana
4 lunches
Meetings with local leaders in the Jewish communities
Art program at The Merger
Dominoes or dance therapy at the Senior Center
Habana Compas Dance group performance
Cigar factory tour
Vocal Clave de Sol program
Fabruca D'la Arte visit
Transfer included if arriving/departing with the main group
Entrance fees per itinerary
Cuban emergency medical insurance
Bottled water on the bus


Roundtrip airfare, departure taxes and fuel surcharges
Cuban travel visa
Any border taxes
Tips to guide, driver and dining room waiters ($20 per person, per day; pre-collected)
Meals not listed above
Optional evening visit to Habana Cafe
Items of a personal nature
Supplemental travel insurance (highly recommended)

Tour Itinerary:

Day 1: Tuesday, November 5, 2019: DEPARTURE

• We depart Los Angeles on our flight to Miami.
• Upon arrival, we transfer to our hotel to check in.
• Evening at leisure and dinner on own.

Overnight in Miami

Day 2: Wednesday, November 6, 2019: WELCOME TO CUBA!

• Breakfast and check out of our hotel.
• We transfer to the airport for our flight to Havana, Cuba.
• Upon arrival in Havana, we take in a panoramic overview of the city beginning with a stop at Revolution Square. The square is dominated by the José Martí Memorial and is where Fidel Castro delivered the majority of his lengthy political addresses.
• We continue with an art program at The Merger.
• Later this afternoon, we check into our hotel and have time to relax and refresh.
• Tonight, we join together for a welcome dinner at La Habanera paladar.

Overnight in Havana

Day 3: Thursday, November 7, 2019: HAVANA

• Breakfast at our hotel.
• This morning, we visit the Sephardic Center and meet with Mayra Levy, president of the congregation. We deliver aid to the community and visit the Senior Center, which provides crucial care and social activities to community members. We enjoy dominoes or dance therapy with some of the seniors. We also see the center's Holocaust exhibit, opened in 2011.
• We enjoy lunch with seniors from the center.
• This afternoon, we visit Finca Vigia, the villa that Hemingway called home for 21 years. His home is now a museum with many of his personal belongings, where we learn how Cuba influenced his writing.
• We return to the center of Havana, where we tour the Museum of the Revolution to gain an understanding of the momentous change that has occurred in Cuba due to the Revolution over 50 years ago.
• This evening, we enjoy dinner together at Madrigal.

Overnight in Havana

Day 4: Friday, November 8, 2019: EXPLORING HAVANA

• Breakfast at our hotel.
• This morning, we visit the Cuban Art Collection at the Fine Arts Museum.
• Next, we enjoy a performance by the Habana Compas Dance group, known internationally for combining dance and percussion.
• We enjoy lunch at VIPhavana.
• This afternoon, we enjoy a walking tour of Old Havana (Havana Vieja), a UNESCO World Heritage site. We learn about the history of Havana as we visit highlights of the city and the colonial plazas.
• Next, we learn about the art and tradition of cigar rolling in Cuba on a tour of the Partagas Cigar Factory and see the process from leaf to finished product and ultimately distribution.
• We make a quick stop at the Raquel Hotel, a Jewish-themed hotel.
• As the sun sets, we participate in Shabbat services at the Sephardic Center, followed by Shabbat dinner with members of the local community.

Overnight in Havana

Day 5: Saturday, November 9, 2019: SHABBAT SHALOM!

• Breakfast at our hotel.
• Today, we visit the Rosenberg Memorial, Lennon Park, and pass by Havana University.
• Next, we visit Vocal Clave de Sol, a musical education program for children founded in 2009. We meet and interact with some of the students and teachers and learn about the importance of this program to the students here.
• We enjoy lunch at El Laurel.
• After lunch, we stop at the impressive Fuster house/studio to see this unique mosaic masterpiece and learn about the artist's project to beautify and help the community he lives in.
• Free evening for dinner on own (your guide will be able to assist with reservations).
• Optional: Late evening visit to the artists of Fabrica D'la Arte, a former cooking oil factory, which comes alive on weekend nights and features the best avante garde art in the country.

Overnight in Havana

Day 6: Sunday, November 10, 2019: SANTA CLARA & CIENFUEGOS

• Breakfast and check out of our hotel.
• We begin with a visit to Patronato, where we meet with community leaders. We tour the center and learn about the pharmacy, see the kids at Sunday school and have time to deliver our gifts and aid.
• We depart for Santa Clara, an important city founded in the 1600's, where Che Guevara won a significant battle, leading to the triumph of the revolution in 1959.
• Next, we stop at the Che Guevara memorial for a photo opportunity in the square and visit the Che Museum underneath.
• This afternoon, we meet with David Tacher, a leading representative of the Santa Clara Jewish community, where we will learn about the local community and deliver our gifts and aid.
• We continue to Cienfuegos for dinner at Finca Del Mar, overlooking the water.
• We check into our hotel later this evening.

Overnight in Cienfuegos

Day 7: Monday, November 11, 2019: HISTORIC TRINIDAD

• Breakfast at our hotel.
• This morning, we depart for the beautiful colonial town of Trinidad, a charming city settled in 1514, declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1988.
• Upon arrival, we enjoy a walking tour of historic Trinidad, a 500-year old city with Spanish colonial architecture. Only a few square blocks in size, historic Trinidad is famous for its lovely cobblestone streets, pastel houses with wrought iron grills, as well as beautiful palaces and plazas. We will learn about the efforts to preserve the city's heritage and stop for a chance to peruse the local craft market.
• Next we meet with the famous Santander family, well-known local potters, and visit their workshop and gallery. This family of artists have been making handmade pottery for over 100 years.
• We enjoy lunch at La Botija paladar.
• After lunch, we return to Cienfuegos for a tour, including Parque Marti and the Thomas Terry Theater, while learning about this UNESCO World Heritage site founded by French immigrants in 1819.
• We complete our day with a meeting with Rebecca Langus and learn about the local Jewish community, with time to deliver gifts and aid.
• Tonight, we join together for dinner at Casa Verde.

Overnight in Cienfuegos

Day 8: Tuesday, November 12, 2019: THE INTERIOR TO HAVANA

• Breakfast and check out of our hotel.
• This morning, we listen to a moving performance by Cantores de Cienfuegos at Museo Provincial de Cienfuegos.
• We depart for Havana. On the way, we discuss the impacts of the US embargo on Cuba and the history of US/Cuban relations.
• Lunch on own en route.
• We continue to Adat Israel, the Orthodox synagogue, where we will meet with Jacob Berezniak to deliver our gifts and aid to the community.
• We check into our hotel and relax or choose to watch a local little league team's baseball practice (optional).
• This evening, we enjoy a classic car ride to our festive farewell dinner at Ivan Justo paladar.
• Optional: Visit Habana Café for nightlife and entertainment.

Overnight in Havana

Day 9: Wednesday, November 13, 2019: DEPARTURE

• Breakfast and check out of our hotel.
• We transfer to the airport for our flight back to Los Angeles via Miami.

The Memories Last Forever!!
*Itinerary subject to change