Salsaville Dance Studios

Salsaville's Thanksgiving Music & Dance, Support for the Cuban People
Tour of Cuba: November 17th - December 4th, 2023

Salsaville's epic two-week plus Music & Dance Tour of Cuba is back!!
     Havana, Santiago de Cuba, and Baracoa!

The plan is to first spend 7 nights taking in the big city and salsa capital, Havana. We will explore the salsa scene in depth (parties, concerts, local dance clubs, and more), meet locals, and take in the architectural splendor that is Havana.

Then, we all fly all the way across the country to arrive to Santiago. Here we have 5 nights in this more provincial setting, which is known as the cultural capital of Cuba. "Son" music, the root of all salsa music (e.g., Buena Vista Social Club) is from here, and you will live and breathe it during our stay here.

Finally, we all take a relaxed ride in our own bus, with a handful of short stops along the way, seeing gorgeous countryside, coast, and mountains to arrive to one of the most isolated regions of the island - the very quaint and charming Baracoa - Cuba's first settlement and its first capital. Baracoa is much more laid back than Havana and Santiago and has its own music & dance culture as well. However the main attraction here is seeing its most abundant natural beauty, considered among the very best on the island, which we will explore extensively during our three and a half days there. Click here to read a good article about this area.

Each destination is very different and all provide unique and amazing experiences:


Here are the details of our travel plans:


There are three travel package options:

Option #1. Full trip: Leave Friday, November 17th and return Monday, December 4th

I do recommend this first and longer option, as you will get to experience so much of what Cuba has to offer. Each place is so different, and seeing them all will provide a much more balanced & complete view of Cuba.


If your schedule simply does not allow you to be gone for over two weeks, we have two alternate options:

Option #2. Havana only: Leave Friday, November 17th and return Sunday, November 26th (or Monday, November 27th)

The main destination in a visit to Cuba is Havana, the capital of Cuba, which has the most access to music & dance events along with offering so many things to see & experience. You will leave with getting an extremely good view of the culture of Cuba.

In addition, there will be an optional, but highly-recommended day-long trip to Viñales ($50 roundtrip trip taxi supplement) in the tobacco producing region of Cuba, with some amazing nature to enjoy. This special day will help a lot towards experiencing more of what Cuba has to offer.

Option #3. El Oriente de Cuba: Santiago & Baracoa only: Leave Friday, November 24th, and return Monday, December 4th

Santiago and Baracoa are such special places. You will bond with the cities and their people. Recommended especially for those who strongly prefer smaller cities/towns, or perhaps for those who previously visited Havana but haven't yet explored other parts of the country.




Please read the testimonials below from the members of Salsaville's first 5 trips to Cuba. Their heartfelt words explain much better than I can why this trip is such a memorable experience:

Testimonials from Salsaville's 1st Music & Dance trip to Cuba - November 2015
Testimonials from Salsaville's 2nd Music & Dance trip to Cuba - January 2016
Testimonials from Salsaville's 3rd Music & Dance trip to Cuba - March 2016
Testimonials from Salsaville's 4th Music & Dance trip to Cuba - November 2016
Testimonials from Salsaville's 5th Music & Dance trip to Cuba - January 2017

And the trips just keep getting better and better each time. Here are some testimonials from more recent trips:

Testimonials from Salsaville's 11th Music & Dance trip to Cuba - January 2019
Testimonials from Salsaville's 12th Music & Dance trip to Cuba - November 2019

And here are the testimonials from our recently completed Cuba trip - the first since after the pandemic began:

Testimonials from Salsaville's 14th Music & Dance trip to Cuba - November 2022



Any questions or concerns? Please just email me, or call me directly at 720-336-1239.


Back to the Cuba Trip home page


Read on for many more details ...


The Application Form is at bottom of this page.




Exploring Cuban Music & Dance and much more in Havana, Cuba

This trip will be run under a legal "Support for the Cuban People" license (31 CFR § 515.574)

The group size will be limited to 16 or so travelers.
Please note that this will be run as a "semi-boutique" tour, meaning that the group size will kept on the small side, each member of the trip will receive individual attention, and the tour can be somewhat customized to your desires & interests. In addition, we are staying in upscale accommodations, but as a home-stay, not in a hotel. The group will be able to move around more efficiently and do more than a larger group could. This way we can all achieve my goal of making sure that each person has an amazing experience.


Included in the package price is:

Basic Travel:

Music & Dance Activities:

Additional activities:


Trip cost, which does not include airline travel from your home airport to Cuba & back:


The following is now included in the cost of the travel package:


All flight-related fees to get to Cuba and back are not included:


Info about airfare:


The only other things that are not included in the package price and for which you should bring money to Cuba are:

Payment schedule is as follows:

If you need to cancel for whatever reason, I'm afraid none of the payments are refundable, except for a partial refund if we can find a replacement traveler and transfer the plane tickets into their name.


Why travel with Eric "El Cubanito" Freeman?
Eric has been traveling to Cuba since 1995. He has traveled there 28 times, and spent a total of over 30 months on the island. In addition, Eric has previously run a total of 14 group trips there, and is well-versed in the ins and outs of navigating Cuba and providing an amazing experience for all who choose to go on a Salsaville trip to Cuba. He has studied dance there extensively and has developed numerous connections over the years. Join him to explore and experience the amazing things Cuba has to offer. The focus of the trip will be dancing and music, but the tour includes exploring Cuba's history, architecture, beaches, and their fascinating people.





APPLICATION FORM:


Please copy & paste the below text into an email, fill in, and send to eric@salsaville.com.
(Please avoid printing out this form and writing in answers by hand.)

1. Which dates are you signing up for:
Option #1: Full Trip: November 17th - December 4th
Option #2: Havana Only: November 17th - November 26th (or November 27th)
Option #3: Baracoa & Santiago only: November 24th, and return Monday, December 4th

2. Would you like single or double occupancy?
If double occupancy, tell me the number of beds needed and the name of the person you are sharing a room with.
(Or, although tricky, let me know if you would like me to attempt to match you with another traveler to share a room with.)

Note: All rooms have AC and en-suite bathrooms (i.e. the bathroom is directly connected to your bedroom.)

3. Do you want any room upgrades? (This is on a space-available basis only.)

Havana: We will have some options for room upgrades, which include ocean-views, and/or deluxe apartments. Prices will be from $10-$35 per night extra. Please indicate if you're interested, and if looking for a lower or higher-end upgrade.

Santiago: Upgraded room @ additional cost of $5 per night.

Baracoa:

(These prices are per room, not per person. So if you are doing double occupancy, then the additional cost is only half that per person.)

4. Please indicate your preferred origin and return airports:
If you want to return to a different airport, or perhaps stay in Miami or elsewhere on your own for a few extra days on the way back, please indicate this.

Do you generally prefer window or aisle seats? (This could always be changed later on.)

Do you do overnight flights?
     a. Not at all.
     b. Yes, if it makes the connections work a bit better.
     c. Makes no difference to me either way.
     d. I actually prefer overnight flights.

Do you do very early flights (i.e. flights leaving between 5:30am and 7:00am)?
     a. Not at all.
     b. Yes, if it makes the connections work a bit better.
     c. Makes no difference to me either way.
     d. I actually prefer very early flights so I can get to my destination at an earlier hour.

5. Your email address:

Do you regularly check your email at least once every 24 hours?

6. Your cell phone number with the ability to receive text messages:

7. Fill in the info below as it appears on your passport:
First name:
Middle name:
Last Name:
Date of Birth:
Gender:
Passport #:
Passport date of expiration:

8. Contact info for any emergency:
Name of person:
Relationship:
Phone number:

9. Your mailing address:

10. Attach a good quality scan of your passport. (Taking a photo with a smartphone camera works fine.)

11. Do you have any physical and/or psychological issues that could impede your ability to successfully participate in this trip?

12. This tour will involve walking a total of 1-3 miles per day. Are you able to do this while maintaining an average moderate pace? (If not, it does not mean you cannot come on the trip. I would just need to know this ahead of time in order to possibly make some adjustments.)

In addition, on about 5 days, we will be doing 2 to 3 hours a day of dance lessons in well-ventilated, but non-airconditioned rooms. Some evenings we will be going out dancing for 2-3 hours. All activities are optional. If you are tired at any point, you can always opt-out and go back to your room to relax, rest, etc.

13. You will need to sign a fairly standard liability waiver to sign which will be delivered to you upon accepting of your application.

14. From time to time you will be asked for your input on some aspect of planning the trip. You will sometimes be asked to respond in as little as 24 hours. (Examples include RSVP'ing to a proposed group orientation meeting time, and getting your go ahead in purchasing specific airline flights.) I will need your timely response in order to help effectively plan the trip. Do you agree to do your best to respond in a timely-manner?

15. Now that Cuba has a functional mobile cell network with decent mobile data access, we will be using WhatsApp as the primary means of communciation to plan/accounce various details about each days' events while on the trip when we are not all together as a group. Do you agree to making sure you are comfortable using WhatsApp, and agree to bring or rent a carrier-unlocked phone in order to have appropriate access to WhatsApp?

(Unlocking your phone should be easy, but needs to done ahead of time.) (You can use your U.S.-carrier based service while in Cuba if you like, but it is not recommended as it would be normally very expensive to do so.)

16. What are your expectations for participating in this trip? (Two sentence minimum here please.)

17. Please list any dietary restrictions that could be relevant to this trip - like if you don't eat red meat, poultry, fish, dairy, etc.



Eric "El Cubanito" Freeman
Owner, Salsaville Dance Studios
www.Salsaville.com
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