The Bird's Word

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    Joslin with one of her 10,000 Cuban Best Friends
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    Evening taxi ride in a classic car in Havana
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    Private rehearsal of the Malpaso dance troupe
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    Farmland views while on the road
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    Warm reception by the principal (middle, red shirt) of an elementary school
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    Coffee farmers share their homestead with guests
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    Rum and cigars... ¡Así es Cuba! (This is Cuba!)
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    Cuban schoolchildren meet their visitors
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    A Casa Particular in Trinidad (a B&B in a private home)
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    Taking a stroll in the lovely town of Cienfuegos
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    Hiking a trail in Topes de Collantes National Park
   

Traveling to Cuba: Keeping it Personal

Posted on by Joan Weber

Journeys International started offering Cuba travel services in 2016, and Joan Weber, co-founder and Senior Director of Journeys,  traveled there with our first group departure. Here, she shares her thoughts on the challenges and opportunities related to traveling in Cuba.

P1110387---Version-2-393x593.jpgOur group in Cuba followed the itinerary Journeys designed with trip leader Joslin Fritz, called Rhythm of a Lively Land. We had an absolutely fantastic time, and the trip’s title was spot on. But, as we lived the experience, we came up with another apt title: Cuba With Joslin and Her 10,000 Cuban Best Friends.

Those friends of hers (okay, maybe a tad fewer than 10,000, but lots) became our friends.

They are teachers, artists, dancers, coffee farmers, booklovers, chefs, and bici-taxi drivers. Many of them are energized Cuban entrepreneurs, hopeful about new possibilities ahead. With Joslin as translator, we had wonderful conversations. The learning went both ways. We were laughing all the time. 

Traveling to Cuba is complicated and evolving. There are lots of rules and they seem to change daily. Creating a unique and personal experience while navigating these rules is tricky, but Journeys is doing it. It is no small challenge to offer the spontaneity in Cuba that we offer elsewhere on the planet.

And, as with other countries where we travel, immense effort has been put into finding the best guide for the job... in this case, Joslin and her on-the-ground team. Because Joslin is warm and real, and she's made Cuba her second home, locals embrace her. And because we were with her, and we were a small and open group (as Journeys groups tend to be), we were embraced, too.

There are good times ahead in Cuba, and we look forward to sharing them with you. 


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Category: Rhythm of a Lively Land, Staff Reflections, Cuba, Americas

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Welcome to The Bird's Word, the blog of Journeys International. Here at Journeys, we don’t just visit a place. We immerse ourselves into the culture, the people and the places where we travel. It’s what we call “adventure deeper.” Won’t you join us?

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