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Havana to Vinales Photographic Adventure


Havana, Trinidad, Vinales CUBA

PHOTOGRAPHIC ADVENTURE

It's Tobacco Time

Feb 1st to Feb 9th 2020

The workshop starts in Havana

Havana CubaCuba (map)

With the amazing 15th century backdrops of Havana and the beautiful family owned tobacco fields in Vinales, you’ll experience Cuba like no other photo tour. It will feel like visiting friends!

The people and culture of Cuba will engulf you with its kindness and music. The brilliant colors of Havana will inspire you to create. And the centuries old tradition of farming the world’s finest tobacco will introduce you to Cuba’s rich cultural heritage.

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This trip combines the experience of: 

  • A seasoned professional travel photographer

  • A creative director/photographer

  • A Cuban Artist

This unique combination of professionals will motivate and inspire. You’ll discover your hidden creative talents with new skills and techniques that will stay with you long after this exceptional workshop is completed.

Trip runs February 1st to February 9th, 2019 Starts in Havana, Cuba

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  • We will travel over night to Vinales for the tobacco season. The tobacco will be in harvest and we have been invited to a pig roast and artist galleries.

  • In Havana we will be photographing Flamenco Dancers, Professional Boxers, Artists and of course the Culture of Cuba. Did I also say Old American Cars!

Bruce Byers, Professional Photographer

Will be with us on the streets, photographing people and the architecture of Cuba. This will be his 20th trip. Bruce makes sure the trips are designed to make sure you’ll never see, or photograph, the world quite the same way again. I’m very excited about our upcoming trips, and I think you will be as well. He will lead you through daily activities, working with local artist, boxers, dancers, car owner and many others.

Glenn Batkin, Creative Director

Creative Director that will provide expert groundwork for more impactful images.

An award winning creative director in advertising with over 25 years experience, Glenn believes humans are wired for stories. Creative storytelling can evoke emotions and generate strong personal connections to a brand, its objective, and its products. Glenn has created advertising for such brands such as IBM, Gatorade, Unicef, The US Armed Forces and Verizon. He has worked with some of the world’s top commercial photographers to capture striking images for his clients.

Carlos Aguilera, Cuban Artist

Our Cuban Artist will also be with us to introduce us to the world of Cuban artist.

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Come and learn how to document the amazing colors and details of Cuba with a professional street and travel photographer, a portrait photographer and a creative director. The mix creates hands on help throughout the trip to raise your photography to the next level. The streets will be your classroom, alive with color, music and dance while you photograph under the experienced guidance of professional photographer Bruce Byers. This is a once in a lifetime experience to learn, grow in a unique location that you do not want to miss.

See what our clients are saying: Testimonials

The Video

Havana to Vinales Tobacco Photographic Adventure

February 1st to the 9th 2020

Workshop cost $3799   All inclusive 

Accommodations DOUBLE OCCUPANCY in Casas

(bed and breakfast) including breakfast. 

$350 for single supplement.

Photography workshop starts in Havana, Cuba

Havana to Vinales 2-1 to 2-9

$800 deposit for Havana to Vinales 2-1 to 2-9

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Frequently Asked Questions about Cuba (more at the end)

We will stay in Casa Particulars, in the home of local families. (Think of it as a bed and breakfast)       

  • Enjoy group meals at local restaurants and artist studios

  • All meals included

  • The evening events are by personal choice (could be extra cost)

  • Jazz, small cafe music, and other club visits can all be arranged to work with local artist.

  • We stay flexible to be able to enhance plans according to the group and what exciting unexpected surprises are happening in Cuba.

Lets go to Cuba

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Day 1: February 1st (Saturday)

Fly into Havana to meet group.

  • Arrival at Havana’s Jose Marti International Airport. Private transfer from the airport for a journey to the Havana and your casa.

  • Check into local casa.

  • Depending on flights, we will do a photo walk and be on the Malecon for sunset and welcome rum.

Welcome dinner

Havana has a lot to see and do. There will be many organized photo shoots to work with local Cubans.  Make sure to bring a lot of memory cards.

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Day 2: February 2nd (Sunday)

Sunrise on the Malecon with the fishermen, ships and the Moro Castle.

Each morning there will be a sunrise photo walk for those who care to join.

8:30 am Breakfast served in Casas

Morning walk to the Capitol Building

  • Explore the city on the double decker bus

  • Visit local artist

  • Of course photograph with the owners of old American cars

Lunch: at the Art Pub

  • Explore the squares

  • Meet and photograph the rebuilders of Old Havana

Sunset on the Malecon

Dinner will be in a local café with music 

  • There are many evening events at popular clubs

  • Individual nightly events can be arranged for additional cost

Day 3: February 3rd (Monday)

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We head for the town of: Trinidad, a water front UNESCO city on Cuba’s south coast known for its beauty and an historical importance.  Trinidad is one of the best-preserved cities in the Caribbean from the time when the sugar trade was the main industry in the region.

We will stop at a local farm to photograph local life. 

  • Bruce will conduct a portrait workshop on site.

Lunch: On the road

Arrive Trinidad early afternoon to explore the streets

  • Rooftop for sunset and Rum tasting to learn about the local Cuban rum.

  • Dinner: Local restaurant with music

Evening night walk and music in the square

Day 4: Dec 4th (Tuesday)

Sunrise town walk

  • Breakfast: 8:30 in your casa

Walk the city visiting the town square and streets

  • Visit local artist studios.

  • Explore the city

  • Lunch: Hill top restaurant (great view of the town)

Early afternoon, we will head back to Havana

Dinner: In Old Havana

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Day 5: February 5th (Wednesday)

Lets go Boxing  (photographing the boxers)

Sunrise on The Malecon or on the streets:

Havana always has an interesting turn of events with the fishermen, old ships and great light, if you up for it. 

After breakfast and by 10:30 we will arrive at : Gimnasio de Boxeo Trejo, boxing gym. The best of Cuba will show off their skills and create photos with you.

Lunch: At an Artist studio.

The Old Square has one of just 7 commercial Camera Obscura in the world. It is a great way to step inside a camera and see Havana live. After which we will photograph the other great square of old Havana.

Early afternoon:

Ride in the old cars to visit El Cristo de La Habana (The Havana’s statue of Christ)

Ending up at Moro Castle to photograph it's 15th to 18th century walls and canons.

  • Great skyline of Havana and the Malecon.

  • Return to the Malecon for sunset and music.

  • We will talk and photograph the controllers of the lighthouse of the castle at

  • the mouth of the Havana harbor.

Dinner: At local cafe' 

Night photo walks. (optional)

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Day 6: February 6th (Thursday)

Early Morning (6 am)

Flamenco Dancers in the Havana Cathedral Square.  These great dancers will make it easy for you to create images with them with a once in a lifetime backdrops of 15th century buildings.

Breakfast: in the square.

Afternoon: Work with the stone restoration expert. Photograph their school and building they are repairing. Get into the backyards and homes of Old Havana

Dinner: Local Cafe

Sunset with music on the Malecon.

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Head to Vinales for Tobacco farms and the valleys.

  • We will spend the day      7am bus

    We will visit two major tobacco farms and learn the secret behind the great Cuban cigars.

    • Dinner will be a pig roast with our local tobacco farmer.

    • Good friend art, music and rum

    • Return to Havana early evening

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Day 7: February 7th (Friday)

Today is for rediscovery. 

Revisit those places you didn't get enough of.

We will travel independent or with the group.

  • Always early sunrise walk on the streets or at the water front.

8:30 Breakfast at your Casa

  • This is the day to explore and finish up projects that you started the trip with.

  • Personal walks with Glenn or Bruce

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Day 8: February 8th (Saturday)

Early Morning (6am) Dancers

Flamenco Dancers in the Havana Cathedral Square.  These great dancers will make it easy for you to create images with them with a once in a lifetime backdrops of 15th century buildings.

Breakfast: in a local cafe' 

The rest of the day is on your own or with the group.

Work with Bruce or Glenn to finish a project

Or just chill in a local cafe’ catching that great music of Cuba

Evening farewell dinner.

Day 9: February 9th (Sunday)

 Time to head home.

Catch your flight home or extend your stay  ( Ask Bruce )

Frequently Asked Questions about Cuba

What do I need to bring with me?

You will need your passport and a visa (Camera Odysseys will take care of this) for entry into Cuba. Once there, shopping for essential items like toiletries is nearly impossible. You must bring anything you will need, including all medications. You will also need enough cash to last throughout your trip, since most American credit and debit cards are not accepted in Cuba, traveler’s checks are not accepted, and ATM cards issued by a U.S. bank cannot be used.  I always say " You can always bring the USA cash home, you can't get more once there."

What should I leave at home?

Walkie talkies, satellite phones, and GPS devices are not allowed, and should be left at home. There is no phone service for U.S. cell phones in Cuba. Plan to be without internet for the duration of your trip—it is available in some Cuban hotels for a fee, but it is slow and unreliable.  We will have a Cuban phone with us if there is a need to call the USA.

What is Cuban food like?

Cuban cuisine varies widely depending on the season, location, and market prices—and is limited by what’s available to the Cuban people. Thus, it includes staples like rice, beans, chicken, fish, pork, plantains, and root vegetables. As seasonings are hard to come by, we invite you to bring packaged spices, for your own use and to give to locals as gifts.

What can I bring back from Cuba?

U.S. Customs rules surrounding Cuban souvenirs are similar to those for other countries. Since late last year, the limits on the number or value of Cuban cigars and alcohol have been eased, so you can bring back as much as you want. We also recommend Cuban coffee and art as a lasting memory of your adventure.

Is Cuba safe?

Yes, American tourists are safe throughout Cuba, though we always recommend using common sense. Please see your Final Documents for more detailed information.

Quick Facts

  • PASSPORT VALIDITY:

    Must be valid at time of entry.  You need 6 months on the passport.  USA requirement.

  • BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:

    Two pages are required for entry/exit stamps

  • TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:

    Tourist travel to Cuba remains prohibited. You must obtain a license from the Department of Treasury or your travel must fall into one of 12 categories of authorized travel. See ENTRY, EXIT & VISA REQUIREMENTS below.

  • Camera Odysseys will take care of this for you.

  • VACCINATIONS:

    None

  • CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:

    U.S. credit and debit cards do not work in Cuba. Bring cash to cover your stay. The Cuban government requires that travelers declare cash amounts over 5,000 USD. Travelers should note that the Government of Cuba charges a 10 percent fee for all U.S. dollar cash conversions; this does not apply to electronic transactions or cash conversions in other currencies.

  • Camera Odysseys will exchange money for you.. At this time there is a 10% fee 

 

Earlier Event: November 30
Havana to Trinidad Photographic Adventure
Later Event: February 14
Santiago to the Tobacco of CUBA