Cuba? Shouldn I go?

Old Aug 22nd, 2003, 12:07 PM
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Cuba? Shouldn I go?

I have heard Cuba is being closed to many organizations at the end of 2003. Who has taken the trip? What tour or group would you recommend? Is it safe? What did you like the most, least? Did you have any free time or needed to stay with the group?
Thanks for your help.
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Old Aug 22nd, 2003, 03:34 PM
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We went to Cuba for a week last December with a group called Cross Cultural Solutions. We attended the International Jazz Festival in Havana, which is a bit of stretch as a 'cultural exchange', but we had a wonderful time. I've gotten literature from CCS since then saying their trips will end at the end of 2003. I'm sure if you do a search on the web you can find them. Most of their tours are much smaller and more intimate than the one we went on. Since we were in Havana the entire week, we were pretty much free to come and go and we pleased. There were bus tours and activities planned every day, and music at several venues every night. We went to some and skipped others.

It was a wonderful time and I'd love to go back. Havana is a very special city that may break your heart. It's amazing.
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Old Aug 23rd, 2003, 12:16 AM
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I went last year independently. Cuba is a very safe country. I liked the music and mojitos the most. I disliked the food the most. All my time was free as I was travelling independently.
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Old Aug 23rd, 2003, 12:27 PM
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I don't understand why anyone would want to give their money to Castro and the Cuban goverment.The money you spend in that country does not go to nor does it help the people that have no choice but to live there.
There are so many other places in the world to see.
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Old Aug 23rd, 2003, 03:19 PM
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Johanna, You can e-mail me if you want more information about our trip last year to Cuba. There is a large tourist industry there, so I don't buy the logic that travel doesn't help the locals. It supplies jobs.

Jean [email protected]
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Old Aug 24th, 2003, 03:04 PM
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The government controlled tourist industry in Cuba does supply jobs to Cuban workers, just like the athletic shoe sweat shops in Asia do to people over there. Unfortunately, though the workers take a hosing, it is the only game in town for many of them.
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Old Aug 26th, 2003, 06:47 AM
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We spent 2 weeks in Cuba two years ago and it is a wonderful place to visit.

We split our time between Havana and the Cayos and travelled independently

The locals are extremely friendly and appreciate the fact that tourists want to visit their country - they only wish more would go

It is one of the safest countries we have travelled to.

The food can be a bit ropey in some restaurants but if you stay in one of the larger hotels (I would recommend Melia chain) the food tends to be much better.

In Havana we stayed in the Old Town on Obispo - Hotel Florida, which is full of character

Havana is an amazing city and you will love it.
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Old Aug 26th, 2003, 07:15 AM
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Hi
My daughter just visited Cuba with a group called... Global Exchange (I think). She loved the trip, loved Cuba and loved the people. She's very open-minded / liberal and wanted to experience their culture.
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Old Apr 27th, 2005, 11:56 AM
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We (=me and 3 friends) went to Cuba independantly in July/August 2002 for about 3,5 weeks and absolutely loved it. We flew into Havana, took a national flight to Santiago and then rented a car to drive back, visiting a.o. Trinidad and Pinar del Rio. It is a very safe country, and with reading some guide books and me knowing some basic Spanish it was just perfect. We stayed at 'casas particulares' most of the time. If you want to experience the real Cuba, you have to go before Fidel dies!
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Old Apr 27th, 2005, 02:49 PM
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I would definitely go to Cuba. I was fortunately enough to go 2 years ago to speak at a conference. I was mainly in Havana but there's plenty to see there. Felt very safe, tours and tour guides were exceptional! I wouldn't hesitate to go back in a heart-beat. I totally agree, you need to go during Castro's rein.
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