Published online by Smarter Travel | By Christine Sarkis
Restrictions on travel to Cuba may have been loosened recently, but there are still so many rules about what American tour groups can and can’t do, it’s no surprise most of the itineraries are pretty similar. These educational, people-to-people trips are quickly creating a beaten path in the small, still-sort-of-off-limits Caribbean country. On most tours, you’ll go to a cigar factory, you’ll have dinner at a local family restaurant, and you’ll visit a colonial city. It’s not that these and other iconic activities aren’t interesting, it’s just that some travelers want something a little different.
Here are seven companies offering just that, tours that provide a unique lens through which to see Cuba:
Globus: Veteran tour provider Globus offers a boldly different itinerary with its Eastern Cuba’s Hidden Gems. Bypassing tour-group standards Havana and Trinidad, the trip focuses on less-visited cities and towns including Holguln, Baracoa, Gibrara, and Velasco. The itinerary includes a visit to a musical organ factory, a workshop with local fisherman, a stop in a local’s home, and a trip to a cocoa farm. The cost of the nine-day tour starts at $2,459 (land only).