Back to All Events

Santiago to the Tobacco of CUBA


Begin in Santiago

Travel to the Tobacco Harvest

Of Cuba

ending on the streets of Havana.

w-Cuba-Pinar-del-Rio-12-2015-C26O9004.jpg

When we visit some of our favorite remote places, like Cuba, we’ll be sure to give you a trip with a twist that no ordinary group would offer. For instance in Cuba, we’re not just going to visit magnificent urban and rural areas, we’ll be following the tobacco harvest with some of the most famous growers and cigar makers in the world, across the country, a trip equivalent to being on the ground for the great wine harvests of Bordeaux and Burgundy.

The trip will start in Santiago where we will explore the city and it's people.  We will have Carlos Rene Aguilera Tamayo as our guide to take us into the culture and the world of Cuban art. We will travel into the sugar cane to capture the harvest.

We will then fly to Havana and drive to Vinales on the western end of the island.  The valleys of Vinales hold the greatest tobacco fields in the world, which will be in full bloom.  The farmers have opened their farms to us to photograph and learn about the famous Cuban cigar. The sunrises and sunsets will be taken while looking over the farmland.  The artists of the area have invited us into their homes to listen to great music and talk art.

If that is not enough we will then travel to the great Cuban city of Havana on the north coast to walk the streets, photograph the color and the cars and again be invited to get to know the local Cubans.


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 designs the trips to make sure you’ll never see, or photograph, the world quite the same way again. He is very excited about our upcoming trips, and thinks you will be as well.

Travis W Keyes, Professional Photographer, Social Media

Having forged his path into the world of photography after a career in nightlife and entertainment, Travis brings a sharp and unique aesthetic to his photography. Discovering a new sense of happiness and fulfillment in his work. With a quick look at his work (a who's who in fashion and celebrities), one can see why he is always in high demand.

 Workshop he will be running during the trip

Traveling Light, portraiture and shooting with strobe on location.

Glenn Batkin, Creative Director

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

An award winning creative director in advertising, 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. He has created advertising for such brands as IBM, Gatorade, Unicef, The US Armed Forces and Verizon. Glenn has worked with some of the world’s top commercial photographers to capture striking images for his clients.

Over the course of the trip you will learn:

  • The difference between photography and storytelling.

  • Anyone can take a photograph but not all photographs tell visually rich stories.

  • The use of design in photography through color, texture, light, perspective and detail.

  • To craft your own unique visual voice.

Carlos Aguilera, Cuban Artist

Our Cuban Artist will also be with us to introduce us to the world of Cuban artist. Born in Santiago with a famous Cuban artist father. Carlos will be our window into life and culture of Cuba.


Feb 14th:  Meet in Miami

(Hotel in Miami not included)

Fly to Holguin, Cuba, February 15th

Santiago (Sugar, Rum factories and local fine art)  

Vinales  (Photograph the tobacco harvest) 

Havana  (Photograph old American Cars: enjoy local music)

Group of 10 to 12

Price $4500  (double occupancy)

$350 additional for single room   

Deposit of $800

10 days and 9 nights

All Inclusive from Miami

Early sign up $200 off discount by Nov 25th

Use code: Travis


Santiago to Vinales Tobacco

$800 deposit on Santiago to Vinales Tobacco

Quantity:
Add To Cart

Feb 14th:  Meet in Miami

(Hotel in Miami not included)

Round trip flights from Miami to Holguin included. The flights into Holguin, Cuba are early so we will meet in Miami

February 15th: Miami 

Fly to Holguin from Miami

  • We will fly into Holguin and then drive to Santiago. Depending on when we land we can tour the city.

  • The adventure starts.  Santiago, is very different from Havana and Vinales Cuba, has the Santiago rum, the sugar cane and the art.

  • We will arrive at the casas and take a tour of the city and its historical battle fields.  Dinner will be filled with music in the old part of town. (Included)

February 16th:  Santiago

  • Early morning we will be on the streets with the sunrise followed by a visit to one of the famous rum factories of the famous Santiago rum.

  • The afternoon will take us to the south shore for sunset at the Moro Castle of Santiago.

  • Night walks

  • Dinner (Included)

February 17th: Santiago

  • Yes Santiago has the old cars and we will ride in them.

  • In the afternoon we will head to the sugar cane fields and the sugar cane factories.

  • Dinner not included

Vinales-Cuba-Hasselblad-2-18-_B_9999280.jpg

February 18th:  Fly to Havana

With a drive to Vinales

Today we will fly to Havana where we will pick up our private bus to Vinales.

  • Vinales is the place of the valleys and the famous Cuban Tobacco.  

  • We will photograph sunset and sunrise in the fields.  

  • Dinner will be in the town of Pinar del Rio with a local artist and music. (included)

February 19th: 

Vinales Tobacco

  • Today is an early sunrise in the valleys and tobacco fields for the light.

  • Mid-day we will visit the rum factories and have lunch with local artist.

  • Dinner will be a pig roast with our local tobacco farmer.  This will be the real thing.  Cuban coffee, cigars, rum, music and good food.

February 20th: Vinales

  • Early sunrise location shoot

  • Breakfast at casa

  • Photograph in the fields and local homes

  • Early afternoon we will head for Havana

  • Sunset on the Malecon.

  • Dinner at a local cafe'

February 21st: Havana

  • The day in Havana will start with sunrise on the Malecon.

  • Breakfast at your casa at 8:30

  • 10:30 boxing starts. Photograph the up and coming stars

  • Lunch at Two Brothers

  • Ride the old cars to Moro castle and The Christ Statue

  • Photograph the 15th century castle overlooking Havana

  • Sunset on the malecon

  • Dinner not included

February 22nd: Havana

  • Early morning shoot with dancers

    Sunrise Flamingo dancer will join us in cathedral Square. The 15th century will be our background.

  • Breakfast at a local cafe'

  • Meeting with the stone restoration master of Havana

  • Printing workshop

  • Camera Obscura

  • Walk the squares

  • Dinner on the roof top with a local Cuban artist

  • Dinner included

  • Night is on your own

February 23rd: Havana

  • The streets are yours.  Group travel and or personal exploration.

  • Bruce Travis and Glenn will take you around Havana exploring and capturing local Cuban life.

  • Hemmingway's house

  • The streets

  • Old cars

  • The Malecon

  • We will plan it out amongst the group as it will be our last day

Farewell dinner

February 24th: Fly home to Miami    (or stay)

What's Included:

  • Some Meals (listed on itinerary)

  • 6 lunch and 6 dinners

  • All ground transport in Cuba

  • Round trip air from Miami with the group

  • Accommodations in Casas (bed and breakfast) including breakfast

  • Double occupancy: Single $350 supplement

  • Visa to Cuba

  • Medical insurance in Cuba (Note this is not travel cancellation insurance)

  • Entrance fees to attractions listed on itinerary

What's NOT included:

  • Alcoholic beverages

  • Accommodations at starting off point in US, Miami

  • Travel insurance

  • Some meals (refer to itinerary)

  • Ground transport at starting off point in US

  • Internet or communications costs in Cuba

Note: Final schedule may deviate from plan due to conditions on the ground.

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..

Later Event: August 1
Camera Odysseys African Safari