Cuban Adventures e-Newletter!

Edition 2 - May 26, 2009

Carnival in Santiago de Cuba - July 21 to 27

Carnival Santiago de Cuba Our 15 day tour starting in Havana on July 18, coincides with the 2009 Santiago Carnival. The tour follows our normal 15 day tour itinerary , and includes 3 days (and nights!) in Santiago to experience Cuba's largest, most famous, and most traditional Carnival!

When the Carnival begins in Santiago de Cuba, the whole city turns into one big party! An explosion of colour, contagious drum rhythms, and dance, Carnival is also a time for Cubans to re-gather themselves and remember their history, community, and culture. It is punctuated by the Cuban national holiday of July 26th.

July 26th was when Fidel Castro first made an attack on the Batista Government at the Moncada Army Barracks in Santiago - not far from where the main Carnival parades take place. 2009 is the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution so some special events and celebrations will certainly be planned.

Carnival Santiago de CubaThe second biggest city after Havana, Santiago is the most exotic city of Cuba with lots of different ethnic groups having settled here over the centuries, including African, Chinese, Indigenous, French Haitian, and Spanish.

The mixture of these cultures is shown in the richness of the music and dance, many forms of which originated in Santiago de Cuba, such as the Conga, Rumba, and Son.

What most characterizes the Carnival are the congas, which can be heard in many different areas around the city. Also popular orchestras make their way to Santiago for the festivities. For the city's inhabitants, as long as there is music to dance to, and plenty of beer, the Carnival is a success.

Click here! to read more about this festival.

To see more photos of the 2008 Santiago Carnival - click here!

Our Photo Album

Cuban Adventures Photo AlbumWe are excited to announce the launch or our new and improved Cuban Adventures Photo Album!. Our highly skilled Cuban web designer - Alejandro - has put together this collection of photos that have mostly been taken by travellers on our tours.

Swine Flu in Cuba

Cuba has decided to step up controls and prevention against the A H1N1 virus as the illness continues to spread around the world. On the island, a visiting 14-month old Canadian boy, who became Cuba’s 4th case, was released from hospital after reacting “very favourably” to treatment.

Likewise, the three Mexican medical students who brought the Swine Flu with them upon their return from vacation in their country are back studying, according to the Ministry of Public Health.

A combined effort of the Health, Tourism, and Transportation authorities is taking place to verify the health of arriving passengers, including the use of advanced medical equipment installed at the main entry points to determine body temperature. Medical personnel are also on hand to check for symptoms of the swine flu. Follow up monitoring of both Cuban and foreign travellers is also taking place.

The World Health Organization is reporting over 12,000 cases of Swine Flu virus in 43 countries with close to a hundred deaths. Over half of the total cases have been recorded in the United States, with 90 percent being in the US, Mexico and Canada. Source - www.havanatimes.org

Additionally, Cuba's Civil Aeronautics Institute has temporarily suspended all regular as well as charter flights from Mexico (including Cancun) to Cuba until further notice. This follows the Cuban National Civil Defense Council issuing the Alert Stage for the country of Mexico.

Latest Cuba Tour Testimonial

Lusine Stepanian, Canada - 15 day Cuban Adventure

I LOVED it! It was one of the most rewarding experiences. The highlight was living with local families and understanding what Cuba is really about. And it was a huge plus traveling with a local tour guide. I was inspired and would like to share an article I wrote about Cuba: http://thecompassculture.com

Finally

Thanks for your support!

Kind regards
John Ahrens - Manager Big Planet Adventures