“I recently had the pleasure of sailing on Marina’s first voyage to Cuba, and the best way to get an insider’s view of Cuba is to be immersed in the culture and everyday lives of the people—meaningful cultural insights that invite you to experience the real Cuba,” stated Bob Binder, President & CEO of Oceania Cruises. “You can enjoy exactly that on these new voyages, all of which offer calls in Havana, Santiago de Cuba, and Cienfuegos.”
Sailing to Cuba with Oceania Cruises is a journey into the extraordinary. Aboard Sirena, there are only 684 privileged guests who are catered to by 400 professionally trained staff. Travelers will indulge in "the finest cuisine at sea" in four open-seating gourmet restaurants where they will dine on continental specialties along with the bold and vibrant tastes of Cuba. Each of these voyages will feature a wide array of authentic Cuban dishes that were born from generations-old family recipes. Adding to the enriching nature of the journey, authoritative and engaging experts will deliver lectures on Cuban history, art, and music or perhaps guests will join a group of their fellow travelers in a Cuban staple, the game of dominos. Throughout the journey, Sirena is a bastion of modernity and old-world comfort. Her 342 staterooms and suites are elegantly appointed and 70% of them have their own private teak veranda, the perfect perch from which to take in stunning Caribbean seascapes.
Havana, Cuba: The door to Cuba’s soul, Havana captivates with its larger-than-life culture, sultry rhythms and weathered beauty. Take a relaxing stroll along the evocative Malecón, the quintessentially Cuban thoroughfare, and get lost among the Baroque facades and colonial cobblestone alleys of Old Havana. Visit the grandiose Capitolio Nacional and explore the world-class Cuban art collection at Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, which showcases everything from colonial-era paintings to countless masterpieces from Cuba’s famed Vanguard Period. Enjoy memorable explorations such as touring one of Havana’s venerable old cigar factories for an inside look at the birthplace of these world-famous cigars and the centuries-old process of how they are made. Days ashore in Havana mean a short journey into the lush Viñales Valley, famous for its tobacco and limestone formations known as mogotes; a behind-the-scenes look at artisanal cigar-rolling methods at a local workshop or an evening of irresistible Cuban music at a legendary club. It means interacting with locals, delving into the thriving arts scene at a gallery and discovering the country’s storied history at museums, impressive monuments and other places of historical significance.
Cienfuegos, Cuba: Situated in a beautiful bay in the heart of Cuba’s fertile agricultural region on the southern coast, Cienfuegos will quietly charm you with its French spirit, tranquil seaside setting and neoclassical architecture. Known as La Perla del Sur (the Pearl of the South), Cienfuegos was originally founded by French settlers and its city center is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site. Rich in educationally engaging diversions, its historic center features well-preserved 19th-century structures, gorgeous plazas and a layout inspired by the Spanish Enlightenment. Discover the ornate and eclectic Palacio de Valle and take in the stunning views as you explore Punta Gorda, the perfect spot to enjoy the sunset. Step back in time at Teatro Terry with a performance by local artists or discover nearby Trinidad, a remarkably well-preserved colonial town recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site and anchored by its impressive Plaza Mayor, an open-air museum of Spanish colonial architecture.
Santiago de Cuba, Cuba: A tropical and energetic cultural epicenter, Santiago de Cuba is the country’s second largest city and has played an instrumental role in the evolution of Cuban music, literature and architecture. Wedged between the looming Sierra Maestra mountain range and the aquamarine Caribbean Sea, the city offers a plethora of rich heritage and cultural diversions amidst a dramatic backdrop. Discover the city’s fascinating history at Castillo de San Pedro de la Roca and the Cementerio Santa Ifigenia, where Cuban hero José Martí and Emilio Bacardí Moreau of the famed rum dynasty are both buried. Countless musicians have emerged from Santiago de Cuba including Miguel Matamoros of Trío Matamoros and Sindo Garay, and many say the heart of this thriving city lives in its music scene.
For more information about Oceania Cruises, visit OceaniaCruises.com.
Image Courtesy Oceania Cruises