Cuba: See and Photograph Cuba Before It Changes
Join Juan Pons and our local guides as we photograph the culture, people, landscape, architecture and history of this island nation and its beautiful people. Traveling to Cuba is a mesmerizing experience. Just 90 miles from the coast of Florida, the tense bilateral relationship and the U.S. embargo have kept many from visiting the island over the last 5 decades. The Cuban people, however, await U.S. visitors with open arms, ready to share their culture and history with their guests. Cuba's many advances in education, health and the social sciences, as well as our cultural affinities, mean that we have a lot to learn from each other. Traveling to Cuba provides us with the opportunity to learn side-by-side with Cubans about issues of mutual interest, and share insight into issues that confront our two nations. Cuba is well known for its lively music, beautiful art, incredible architecture, success in sports and pure culture. However, more than anything, it's known for the kindness, creativity and resolve of its people. Traveling to Cuba allows us to build bridges between our two nations and come closer to dealing with issues that politicians have created and failed to resolve over many years.
As one of the safest countries in the Western Hemisphere, it's hard to find a place where you can get farther off the beaten track to photograph, and learn more about yourself, your friends and family, and our neighbors to the south. Isolated (for the most part) from U.S. cellphones and internet service, and absent the billboards and advertising campaigns of the capitalist world, a few days with the people in the streets of Old Havana and the valleys of Pinar del Rio can have a transformative effect.
But is it legal? You bet. The U.S. government authorizes people-to-people visits to Cuba, in which travelers are required to have a schedule of educational exchange activities that will result in meaningful interactions between travelers and individuals in Cuba. We have partnered with Cuba Educational Travel, and their people-to-people license (No. CT-2012-294261-1) allows them to coordinate legal travel for Americans to meet the Cuban people and learn about Cuban society. We also work closely with Havana Culinary and Culture, another people-to-people license holder (No. CT-2013-300203-1), so that all of our trips are fully licensed by the U.S. Government. Yes, things are changing - but as of now this is the way that you can legally travel to Cuba from the US.
November 6 - 15, 2016
Each day, we'll pack in as much in-the-field photo instruction as we can. You can expect to become more proficient with handheld shooting, people photography, and urban and rural architectural photography. There will be some very unique cultural experience photo ops! Of course we'll be maximizing our photo ops each day during sunrise and sunset, as well. As our schedule allows, we plan on image review sessions as well!
November 6, 2016: We meet in Miami (try to arrive before dinner time), where we'll have a group welcome dinner and talk about our Cuban adventure in more detail.
November 7-8, 2016: We fly by charter jet aircraft from Miami to Havana—a short one hour flight. We'll spend one night in Viñales, where we will shoot the beautiful countryside, the small quaint town, and its people. We'll have some photo ops at a local farm, downtown Viñales, a visit to a local arts colony, and a local tobacco farm where we'll see the cigar-making process. We'll dine on the freshest food available (farm-to-table). Accommodations in amazing local B&Bs with private rooms as needed, and each room with private bathroom.
November 8-12, 2016: We photograph and explore the wonderful capital city of Havana—the colors, culture, people and architecture. Sunrise and sunset shoots are planned each day, and other activities during the daytime, such as lunchtime discussion with Cuban journalists, photo shoots at local sporting centers (boxing is huge in Cuba), and we'll hit up nightclubs and photograph the city after dark. We'll also visit a local dance company, and spend time with average Cuban families, and learn more about their way of life. Accommodations are in a 5 star hotel, each room with private bathroom.
November 12-14, 2016: Cienfuegos and Trinidad. Cienfuegos is one of Cuba's oldest and most beautiful cities. We will meet with local artists and photographers here, and we also get a city tour from a local architect. We will spend a ton of time photographing the city of Trinidad and its wonderful people. Here, our accommodations will be in our private villa, which we will have all to ourselves. Private air-conditioned rooms, and each room with its own bathroom and shower.
November 14, 2016: Our last day, after a morning shoot on the streets of Trinidad, followed by breakfast, and critiques, we'll again head out to the countryside for more shooting. Our flight is from Santa Clara, Cuba to Miami, and departs in the evening. We will overnight in Miami, and you can schedule flights home or elsewhere anytime on November 15, 2016.
- Double occupancy lodging in Miami and Cuba
- All meals and transportation during the workshop
- Photographic guiding and instruction
- Miami - Havana and Santa Clara - Miami charter flights
- Cuban Visa and in-country medical insurance
- Miami hotel for nights of November 6 and 14, 2016
What’s Not Included?
Airfare from your home to Miami and back. Airline baggage fees (including the charter flight). Alcoholic beverages. Items of a personal nature. Tips at meals (generally $1-$2 per person) and for housekeeping. Tips for local guides and bus driver (MW leaders do not expect or accept tips). Dinner on November 12 (it's a free evening). Anything not specifically mentioned as included.
Your non-refundable deposit of $3,000 USD will hold your space on this workshop. The non-refundable balance of $4,495 USD will be due not later than August 15, 2016. All of the rest of our standard terms and conditions apply.
See and photograph Cuba before it changes! If you've been thinking about it, now is the time to register by clicking on the Sign Me Up! button. ¡Nos vemos en Cuba!