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Cuba Photo Tour

An exclusive Photo Tour to Cuba, a 9 day photographic adventure with world-class photographer Harry Fisch. Whatever your country of origin - as a result of the new US Treasury Department regulations- you can now join our renowned US People to People photo tour.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • - Limited to 10 participants only
  • - Compelling educational visits to dance and artist's studios, local produce markets, boxing arenas, agricultural and livestock farms, and music venues.
  • - We will work on storytelling with our photographs, starring the characters of Havana. Musicians, painters, dancers, santeras all await our lenses, set against the backdrop of the passionate atmosphere of the Cuban world.
  • - A look into the world of Voodoo and Santeria.
  • - Characters: The special people and characters of Havana. Musicians, painters, dancers, santeras. All the passion and atmosphere of the Cuban world.
  • - Architecture: Former colonial architecture and Art Deco. The suspended time through architecture.
  • - Locations: Alleys and streets, the extraordinary cemetery of Havana. The outskirts.
  • - Landscapes: Cityscapes The Malecon, Havana Vieja. Viñales, a World Heritage Site with its karst mountains. Sugar cane fields.
  • - Experiences: Some transfers in the classic American car from the 50s. We will be shooting a local boxing club in old Havana. Santeria private photo session of Santeria and many more photographic activities.
  • - The special people of Cuba and Havana, photographed at the winding alleys, the neo-gothic churches, 20’s style theaters. Cienfuegos and Viñales. We will find a veritable cornucopia of stages for our photography here. Everything from former colonial style buildings to the Art Deco movement, which is represented throughout the island.
  • - Photograph people in amazing landscapes: We will capture the cityscape of Havana from above and afar, shooting from El Malecon and Habana Vieja. The beauty of Viñales landscape.
  • - Have exciting experiences: We’ll take a ride in a few classic American cars from the 50s, meet and greet with owners of a few budding businesses, and have an exclusive photo shoot in a boxing club in old Havana.

An exclusive US legal Photo Tour to Cuba, visiting Havana, Viñales, Cienfuegos and Trinidad, Private Photo Sessions and spontaneous work with world-class photographer Harry Fisch. Whatever your country of origin is you can now  join our renowned US People to People photo tour. 

IF YOU  WANT TO HAVE A BETTER IDEA OF THE DAY TO DAY EXPERIENCE,

PLEASE CAREFULLY READ THE POST  "An incredible Cuba Photo Tour"

Several photo sessions -with more than 16 people posing for us!- and photographic encounters have carefully been planed and  created but, finally, It’s up to the photographer what they want the experience to be. We will have access to A Vodoo session (Santeria).  Cuba National ballet dancers while training and  shoe makers working and a few surprises along the way.

I will offer  you  many photographic opportunities related to people and cultural diversity: unique locations, spontaneous street photography, planed  private photo sessions in very special surroundings. 

The Cuba  Photo Tour can be, depending on what you make of it, an intense photo tour or a light workshop.

It's one to one instruction, where I personally address all questions and concerns. We will also conduct  two to three photo reviews along the trip . 

Travel Services for this People to People trip provided by In Touch Travel Services LLC under special from the US Treasury Department License No. CT-2014-313005-1, licensed  under the guidelines outlined by the United States Department of Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). 

 

Being a professional travel photographer, totally fluent in Spanish and having visited Cuba for the last 8 years I lead small groups, 10 people max (exceptionally 11).

We will rarely be taking pictures as a whole as, in people photography, it is preferable to have a maximum of two photographers working together with their subjects.  It's a one to one instruction, where I personally address all questions and concerns of the photographer and concentrate on supporting the photographic opportunities we have found and planed for you and also discover together.

We are mainly oriented toward people photography and buildings: short lenses, close distance, atmospheric places. Dancers, shoemakers, barbers, old art nouveau buildings, decadent structures.  We will have access to spontaneous street photography, portraits, Vodoo session (Santeria).  Also, private photo sessions with dancers while training and  shoe makers working and a few surprises along the way.

A Real-Life Cuba Photo Tour and a photographic adventure. 

This photo tour  is geared above all towards personal skill development, but also personal interest. Ultimately, it’s about our experience with Cuban people, so we try to also keep it flexible.  The photo tour will alternate between active photo sessions on the streets and central neighborhoods of the city. We will be sharing moments of real life with the city and subjects, seeking opportunities in the most interesting spots and encounters in Havana; from the budding business of markets, barbershops to working with professional models who will pose for us.   We will have free, daily personal photographic contact with the denizens of a vibrant city that offers continuous photographic opportunities.  Getting around the music filled streets in classic cars, browsing the Art deco buildings of the harbor area, and capturing the city waking up each morning are among the fantastic photo opportunities we’ll have, and this is just the beginning. This is not a tourist visit.  We will enjoy the city, and see some sights, of course, but it isn’t a tour with camera included: we’ll be there to photograph first, sightsee second. 

It is an opportunity to really meet and connect with the Cuban people, and experience the quickly-shifting cultural landscape they live in. Cuba is one of the spots on the map that is alive; ever changing, ever evolving, but ever beautiful. So come along with Nomad and capture this face, this angle of this enchanting country before it sweeps into its next era. Harry is an international award winning, bilingual Spanish-English photographer, and a seasoned traveler of Cuba who knows all the out of the way spots where followers of Santeria (a variation  of Voodoo) practice, Cuba’s best boxers take to the canvas, and where to hang out with Havana’s rising small-business entrepreneurs.  This is a once in a lifetime chance to see the real Cuba and it’s day to day life, beyond the razzle dazzle put out for tourists.    Harry,  will also advise you on how to approach the subjects, the preparation, the photographic vision, analysis of the situation.  He has traveled enough in Cuba to know the best way to approach people on their own cultural ground, which is invaluable to any traveling photographer.

What To Expect in this photo tour

- We will have the chance to photograph spontaneous and also formal portraits with proper preparation in photo sessions. - We’ll have time to work on capturing the atmosphere, because let’s face it, it’s all about atmosphere. Even the most perfectly crafted shot means nothing if it doesn’t evoke feeling, transmit the ambiance, or carry the magic of the moment. - We will enjoy the city, and see the main sights, of course, but this isn’t  just a tour with camera included: we’ll be there to photograph first,  sightsee second - Harry will be with you interacting with locals, and guiding you through the whole process. - Every day will have its own special photographic itinerary to take the best advantage of the plethora of photographic opportunities and adventures that await. New options will be presented to us every day. 

IMPORTANT NOTICE:

This is a 100% legal tour for US citizens. Certain categories of travel to Cuba are permitted, such as educational and people-to-people trips to the island.   Travel Services for this People to People trip provided by In Touch Travel Services LLC under special from  the US Treasury Department License No. CT-2014-313005-1, licensed  under the guidelines outlined by the United States Department of Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).   All payment, travel arrangements and services will be made to and  by the licensed travel agent.

I picked his tour on a whim even though I don't do people or street photography. My only reason was to go to Cuba. Not knowing much about Harry Fisch or his photography was a blessing in disguise as there would be no disappointment without much expectation.It was a wonderful trip seeing Cuba through his eyes who has been there many times. My initiation into street photography began under Harry's expert guidance. I have had the privilege of being on many photo tours with some exceptionally talented photographers. Harry also belongs there in this genre of photography. His patience,interest and knowledge helped me develop respect and fascination for this genre. I would recommend his tour highly if one wants to go to Cuba and do people photography. Since people photography has never interested me I am still so glad that I gave it a try. Street photography a la Harry Fisch is not for the faint of heart as he uses prime, wide angle lenses for his shooting which requires someone to be up,close and personal to get the shots that he has in his portfolio. His portfolio an Varanasi and Ethiopia blew me away. It will be wishful thinking on my part to think that I can have such a portfolio someday. It takes years of dedication and discipline to master such a difficult genre as one has to have genuine interest in people and in storytelling. Hats off to him for mastering this type of photography.

Usha Peddamatham (Texas USA)



ITINERARY

Compelling educational visits to dance and artist's studios, local produce markets, boxing arenas, agricultural and livestock farms, and music venues, to name a few of our well-planned locations will alternate between cultural exchanges, active photo sessions, spontaneous and also formal portraits with proper on the streets and free, daily personal photographic contact with the denizens of a vibrant country  that offers continuous photographic opportunities. Getting around the music filled streets in classic cars, browsing the Art deco buildings of the harbor area, and capturing the city waking up each morning.

  • DAY 1 – HAVANNA.-
    Hola, bienvenido a Cuba!  We will arrive in the morning.After clearing immigration and customs we will meet our guide and driver and will visit Finca Vigia, the site where Ernest Hemingway lived while in Cuba. Welcome lunch will be served at Restaurant El Divino.Check in at Hotel Capri, in the neighborhood of El Vedado. Welcome cocktail and meeting with our tour leader Harry Fisch who will explain the program for our trip.Dinner will be served at 7PM at Paladar Doña Carmela. We need to move quickly because the cannon blast ceremony is scheduled for 9PM. After the ceremony we will attend a presentation by Felipe Ventura about the Colonial history related to pirates and buccaneers. We will have opportunities to take some pictures and to have informal chats with those young men who run the ceremony while serving their military duties.
  • DAY 2 – HAVANNA.-
    After breakfast at the hotel we will meet self employed taxi drivers who run their businesses in old cars such as Chevy, Chrysler, Oldsmobile, all of them built in U.S. before the 1959 Cuban Revolution.They will explain us the dual currency system in Cuba as well as the opportunities they have with the changes to the self-employment regulations by the Cuban government.Photographic session with the drivers and the cars at different strategic locations of Havana (Facing Capitolio,  Next to locomotive repair station, from the car wondering around the Malecon).Ride those cars to visit Art Studio of Jose Fuster in Jaimanitas. He is well known for his work converting a poor fishermen village into an open art gallery. He is also called "The Picasso of the Caribbean".Lunch will be served at Paladar Atelier. This restaurant was featured in the New York Times.Attend an AfroCuban dance spectacle and Santeria. We will be covering photographically the show. Elias will provide an overview of Santeria and other Cuban religions with African routes. We will visit the home of a Babalao, (Yoruba Priestess) who will receive the group and explain the religious deities and elaborate alters in her home. We will witness the entire ceremony photographically.Photo walk Cuba’s famed seawall, the Malecón, to capture a beautiful sunset while we create photo opportunities with locals in a very Cuban atmosphereBefore return to the hotel we can stop by Nacional Hotel to enjoy the sea breeze in the patio. Return to the hotel for rest and leisure.

    Dinner will be served at Paladar "El Idilio" in the neighborhood of El  Vedado.

  • DAY 3 - HAVANNA.-
    This morning we will meet photographers at School of Creative Photography of Havana. Will discuss with them about their work in Cuba. After the meeting continue to walk through Old Havana in a guided tour for appreciation of the colonial buildings and techniques to take the best pictures in this  UNESCO World Heritage Site. Central Park, Obispo Street, Cathedral Square, the Old and Saint Francis Abbey and a book market are among the spots we will visit. After a short walk through cobblestone streets in Old Havana.Visit and photograph a group of shoemakers in Old Havana. Good friends of Harry Fisch’s, the activity allows for an interesting photographic session as well as an opportunity to have a candid discussion where we can exchange ideas and thoughts. This kind of activity has been only recently authorized by the Cuban government.  It gives us the opportunity to see an real life example of Cuba’s budding private sector under Raul Castro.
    Lunch will be served at “Paladar La Moneda Cubana"* visited by Jay-Z and Beyoncé.Afternoon photo shoot with professional models or ballet dancers at La Guarida, the location for the Cuban film “Strawberry and Chocolate.” We will have a unique scenario for a great photo.Dinner on your own.
  • DAY 4 – VIÑALES.-
    Check out at 9AM. Depart to the Viñales valley accompanied by one or two members of the PhotoClub of Havana. Vinales landscape is interspersed with dramatic rocky outcrops. Check in at casas  particulares (private homes). Lunch at "Balcon del Valle" (Valley Balcony). After a brief rest with our guest at homes we will meet farmers in a tobacco plantation. They will explain us how they preserve their rich tradition in agriculture to grow and prepare the leaves for the famous Cuban cigars. This tour will be guided by a biologist who specializes in the flora and fauna of the province of Pinar del Rio. We will visit private farm of  Raul Reyes to learn about organic gardening in Cuba.We will conduct  a series of photo sessions  with the families at  different scenarios at the tobacco plantation.This night we will have the dinner at home family style.
  • DAY 5 – VIÑALES.-
    This morning we will visit the prehistoric mural painting of the Valley. Visit the archeological museum and visit a farmer home to get to know the life in the countryside of Cuba. Some donations will be given to them.We will conduct  a series of photo sessions  with the families at  interesting surroundings.Visit "Finca Paradiso", an experimental ecological-organic farm where the lunch will be served accompanied by local musicians.After lunch we will go inside the countryside visiting small towns around Viñales.Dinner will be served at paladar "La Cuenca"
  • DAY 6 – CIENFUEGOS.-
    The breakfast will be early as we need to depart to Cienfuegos to explore its colonial architecture. Arriving in Cienfuegos we will go straight to Villa Lagarto where Tony and Maylin will delight us with a delicious lunch at a restaurant overlooking the sea. They will be more than glad answering our questions on how they run their business. After a brief rest we will head our steps to the colonial park in the city surrounded by the cathedral, the city hall and Tomas Terry theater.Continue our trip to Trinidad, one of the 7 first villages of Cuba. It was founded by Diego Velazquez in 1514. Together with the nearby Valle de los Ingenios (Sugar Mill Valley), it has been one of UNESCO´s World Heritage sites since 1988. For this tour we have handpicked several "casas particulares" -private homes in the center of the Village- where we will be lodged. Dinner will be served at paladar-museum "1514" accompanied by local musicians and dancers.
    OPTIONAL: Visit "Casa de la Trova" to enjoy a life performance of local musicians. The main spots in Trinidad are less than 2 blocks distance from our homes.
  • DAY 7 – TRINIDAD.-
    Early morning photo shoot to catch the beautiful sunrise of  Trinidad, walk around the colonial houses and capture the local atmosphere, return to the hotel for breakfast.After breakfast we will meet the Historian of the Village who will offer a lecture about the Colonial Heritage in the region. We will be able to chat with other artists who will explain their motivation to create art in this ancient village of Cuba. We will visit the gallery of Danilo Moreno and Yudith Vidal to discover the sculptures and the ingenuity of their creations with disposable materials. The lunch will be served at paladar "San Jose" with a very special menu designed exclusively for InTouch.In the afternoon we will visit the pottery of Chichi Santander to learn about the restoration process of the village, we will visit "El Valle de los Ingenios" -Sugar Mills Valley. They represent the importance of sugar to the Cuban economy over the centuries.Return home for a brief rest and to have one of the best sunset from the balcony of one of our homes.We should find a place for photo  sunset with colonial atmosphere.At night we will get together in one of our homes for a pizza time (or visit "La Botija" restaurant). After dinner we can burn calories dancing at "Casa de la Musica" in the center of the Village.
  • DAY 8 – BAY OF THE PIGS.-
    Visit Bay of Pigs, where the first battle between US and Cuba took place in 1961. We will visit a crocodile farm and will learn about environmental projects in the area.Visit small towns in our way back to Trinidad.Lunch will be served in a local paladar near the sea.Return to Trinidad to catch the photogenic spirit of the afternoon in the town. Visit the local market and catch one of the best sunsets from our house.Farewell dinner at Casa Vivian.
  • Day 9 - CIENFUEGOS .-
    This morning we will have time to rest before depart to the airport to board our flight to Miami. In the way back to Cienfuegos we can visit Castillo de Jagua, Palacio del Valle and have lunch at a local paladar in Cienfuegos.All itineraries provide a full time schedule of educational activities that will result in meaningful interactions between you and individuals in Cuba. U.S. law requires that all persons who participate in this program adhere to this full time schedule, and imposes on The Travel Agent  the obligation to ensure such adherence.


Prices per person
9-10 Participants 5680 US$


Supplements
7-8 Participants surcharge 730 US$
Single Room Supplement 830 US$


TERMS

Prices are per person, based on double occupancy and for 9-10  travelers (see the surcharge for less if aplicable). A limited quantity of single-occupancy rooms are available for an additional charge.
The maximum number of participants are listed under "Maximum Group" in the Price section of each individual workshop. However, we reserve the right to add by up to one, the maximum number of participants per workshop at any time.

INCLUDED

Flight from Miami to Cuba (Est. 550 US$)

Harry Fisch Bilingual Photographer and Tuition

Cuban bilingual guide

All meals while in Cuba , breakfasts, lunches and dinners except two nights on you own.

9 days total 8 nights

First-class accommodations in hotel in Havana

Accommodation in  private homes in Viñales and Trinidad. (Private bathroom, hot water, safe box...)

All local ground transportation

Speaker fees

Admission to all vistis and public buildings listed in itinerary

Coordination of all listed activities

Pre-trip departure information

Health Insurance while in Cuba

Compliance with U.S. Treasury Department regulations

A journal-guide for recordkeeping the trip

Full schedule of guided people-to-people activities


NOT INCLUDED

Airline baggage fees

Airfare to/from Miami

Hotels in Miami

Tips for local guides and drivers

Meals other than listed on itinerary

Individual house/hotel expenses (minibar, room service, laundry fees, etc.)

Cuban Airport Departure tax(25CUC)

Cuban Visa Fee 85 US$

Prices are per person, based on double occupancy and for 9-10 travelers unless expressly listed . A limited quantity of single-occupancy rooms are available for an additional charge.


DEPOSIT

 A deposit of $700 per person is required to guarantee your reservation, which will be applied towards the cost of your tour. Deposits are generally non-refundable, except in rare cases when we cannot confirm all components of a booking at the purchase price. 

 

FINAL PAYMENT:

 Any pending balance must be paid in full at least 90 days prior to departure.

 

IMPORTANT: The information provided herein is a brief summary, but not a comprehensive description of payment policy  by our  partner  People to People Licensed Travel Agency. It is very important that all travelers understand the cancellation policy. If it is not clear, please contact us for clarification and a complete description.

 

All itineraries provide a full time schedule of educational activities that will result in meaningful interactions between you and individuals in Cuba. U.S. law requires that all persons who participate in this program adhere to this full time schedule, and imposes on The Travel Agent  the obligation to ensure such adherence.