African Roots of Cuban Culture


The Center for Cuban Studies is planning a terrific end-of-the-year trip to Cuba, Dec. 21-Jan. 3. Its "African Roots of Cuban Culture" is its most popular itinerary, and this trip will be led by the Center's executive director, Sandra Levinson, who has led trips to Cuba for the past 45 years. This trip includes something no other trip has included: a trip to Remedios to participate in "Las Parrandas" on Christmas Eve (google it!). The journey will start in Havana, then travel across country to Remedios, Trinidad-Cienfuegos, Camaguey, Bayamo and Santiago de Cuba, and leave from Holguin. Accommodations are mostly in small hotels and b&bs of excellent quality. The purpose of the trip is to explore the many ways in which African culture became Cuban culture -- through religion, music, dance, food, speech, in other words, Africa is part of every part of the Cuban way of life. You'll experience what Pico Iyer wrote about Cuba:              

"Where are the liveliest people in all the world? Where are the most romantic seafront walks? Where is the least amount of plastic (burger joints and shopping malls and theme parks)? And which country has the headiest and subtlest and most morally complicated texture? Cuba, only 90 miles – and several decades – away from the U.S. And despite travel restrictions, it is eminently accessible. . . . To travel to Cuba today is to meet conundrums of high-spirited skepticism and ardor, and emotional extremes of poignancy and laughter, that are like nothing else on earth. It is also to see the American Empire in its purest form (the Ricky Ricardo nightclubs, the Mafia-built hotels, the juddering old De Sotos); a unique experiment in tropical Marxism; and a rare, intoxicating mix of African, European, and West Indian rhythms. You learn almost too much when you go to Cuba . . . Go now, before the Golden Arches appear."

Cost of the trip is $5500 in a single, $5100 in a double. For further information and an application, write or

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Price includes hotel, all breakfasts, program meals and meal gratuities listed as “included” in the program (excluding alcoholic drinks), air-conditioned bus, Cuban guide and driver, CCS representative, museum fees.

Costs do not include air, travel insurance, gratuities to guides, drivers, and hotel staff for porterage and/or room service.


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