Cuba Before Exposure

Tour Intro

Check out Richard and Rose YouTube from 2016 photo tour.

Americans are able to travel under a new 'people-to-people' program, which includes daily activities, immersing you into the heart and soul of Cuba. Designed as a cultural and historical program, it will also provide dramatic photographic opportunities each day.


Participants should know that Cuba is a special destination, please understand that all elements of the itinerary are subject to change and that activities listed are examples of opportunities that will present themselves. Since the program is authorized by the U.S. Treasury Department, we have to abide by any changes to regulations that may take place. Please remain flexible as there are often circumstances beyond control and changes may be necessary. Be assured that all efforts will be made to provide a comparable alternative should an item on the itinerary need to be changed.

Tour Highlights

• Program cost includes Miami-Havana round-trip airfare, and travel visa.
• Cuba’s greatest asset ~ Its people.
• Explore the architecture of Old Havana, designated an UNESCO World Heritage site.
• Panoramic views of the harbor, Morro Cabana, and the skyline.
• Two-day excursion to the colonial town of Trinidad on Cuba’s southern coast and two-days in Vinales.
• Colonial architecture of the Pearl of the South: Cienfuegos.
• Education on the arts of Cuba.
• Photo education by both Richard Buchbinder & Rose Erato.

Tour Itinerary

March 5: Home - Miami
Colorful Women

Photo By: Rose Erato

Photo Location: Cuba

Due to the time of the group charter flight tomorrow morning it will be necessary for everyone to fly to Miami today, overnight at hotel (at your cost). We cannot be responsible for missed connections. We recommend everyone staying at the same hotel as your photo leader in order to coordinate departure time in the morning back to the airport. Suggested hotel to be announced, Strabo tours will hold a block of rooms for the group. Hotel room and meals at individual cost.

March 6: Miami - Havana
Man & His Car - Vinales

Photo By: Richard Buchbinder

Photo Location: Cuba

Meet Richard & Rose early this morning in the Miami hotel lobby, return the airport via the hotel shuttle. Depart Miami today on the charter flight to Havana (time to be announced). Currently we can arrange and pre-pay the Cuba Travel Visa fee for you. The airfare and Visa are included in your tour cost.

Upon arrival, the group will depart from the airport to Old Havana. Your local guide will orient you to the highlights of Old Havana on a walking tour. As you stroll the streets, you will be overwhelmed with sights to photograph, from the antique American cars, children playing in the streets or in abandoned lots, from the beautifully restored hotels to the paint peeling off dilapidated buildings. Havana’s architecture is the most beautiful in the various plazas, where locals and tourists congregate to share stories.  Plaza de Armas, Plaza de la Cathedral, Plaza Vieja, and Plaza de San Francisco, are a few that are within walking distance of our hotel. You will be able to return late at night while music fills the air, or early in the morning to photograph as the streets come to life again. Overnight Inglaterra or similar (D)
 

March 7-8: Vinales
Tobacco Farmer - Vinales

Photo By: Rose Erato

Photo Location: Cuba

Depart this morning after breakfast to Viñales, it is a small town located in the Pinar del Rio Province. It has an economy based on agriculture, mainly tobacco farming, and its soil is considered to be some of the richest in the world. In the Viñales Valley, another UNESCO World Heritage site, we’ll see mountainous “mogotes”, made of hard limestone left over after millennia of erosion, as well as rural farmland vistas.

The next morning we will head down into the valley and walk the paths through fields of tobacco and sugar cane, meeting the farmers and photographing their homes and farms. Lunch will be at an organic farm overlooking the valley, and then we’ll continue our exploration of this beautiful valley. Overnight Casa Particular (individuals will stay in various local homes to experience the family hospitality and location in the center of town. (B, D; B, L)
 

March 9: Playa Larga
Food Cart

Photo By: Richard Buchbinder

Photo Location: Cuba

After morning photography around town, and breakfast at the hotel, we drive to the Pearl of the South, Cienfuegos. It is a nautical city, built around a spectacular natural bay. Photograph the architecture of its colonial buildings, elegant Prado, and Parque Marti. You will be able to do sunset and blue hour photography along the beach from the hotel this evening. Overnight Casa Particular (B, D) 

March 10-11: Trinidad
Street Music

Photo By: Richard Buchbinder

Photo Location: Cuba

After an early breakfast travel to Trinidad. Trinidad was founded in the early 16th century on the southern coast of the country. It was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1988, and it’s the perfect example of a traditional colonial town. This jewel on the Caribbean has distinct architecture and a historic center with cobble stoned streets that lead to many landmark buildings, and it’s a joy in which to get lost. This evening you’ll have a guided walking program of this most picturesque town. Each evening there’s a huge gathering where both locals and visitors get together for drinks, some wonderful traditional music and a chance to dance away the night.

Enjoy an early morning photo shoot with your photo leaders before returning to your home for breakfast. Your guide will then join you for a walking tour of the city streets, where you may visit and photograph at an artist studio, a local school, travel to the Valley of the Sugar Mills, or photograph the beautiful landscape of the south coast beaches. Overnight evenings in Casa particular (individuals will stay in various local homes to experience the family hospitality and location in the center of town. (B, D both days)
 

March 12-14: Old Havana
Ballerina

Photo By: Rose Erato

Photo Location: Cuba

You will make your way back to Havana today, where your local guide will orient you to the highlights of Old Havana on a walking program. In 1982 Old Havana was designated an UNESCO World Heritage site and it is brimming with a variety of historical landmarks and interesting things to do. Just walking the streets in this area is a favorite pastime and will surely result in an unforgettable experience with plenty of chances to meet the locals and to take advantage of a myriad of photo ops.

Each day, there will be early morning photo excursions, as you explore the city on foot, photographing the antique cars, architectural details, street scenes, and the local culture. After breakfast your local guide will join you as you continue to explore and photograph different neighborhoods. Additional photographic opportunities may include a boxing gym, or a visit to the ballet rehearsal.

A couple evenings will be free to take in a show, listen to music, and have dinner at a local paladar. Your photo leaders will also offer nighttime photography walks in Old Havana. Just prior to your farewell dinner the group will be driven to the Morro Cabana fortress across the bay, for sunset/dusk photography of the lighthouse, skyline, and the fort in the foreground. Overnight Hotel Inglaterra or similar (B, D; B, L; B, D) 

March 15: Havana - Miami
Havana Theater

Photo By: Richard Buchbinder

Photo Location: Cuba

There will be a morning transfer to Havana airport to begin your program home (Exact time to be announced. Be sure to leave three or more hours between your connection times in Miami. It is also advisable to spend another evening in Miami to avoid missed connections. (B)

 

Photo Leader

Richard Buchbinder & Rose Erato
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Richard Buchbinder & Rose Erato

Richard Buchbinder, is an inspired instructor with twenty years of teaching experience. He leads workshops that are fun and effective. Richard has studied with some of today’s most creative photographers, including Freeman Patterson, Robert Glenn Ketchum, Dewitt Jones, Andre Gallant, and Eddie Soloway. While each has had a significant influence on Richard's work, his own vision is reflected in his images, and he strives to share this personal quality with those he teaches. While most of the workshop time will be spent in the field, where nature photography instruction is most effective, there will also be evening sessions to review basic concepts and critique images. The discussion will include the essentials of visual design, to stimulate your creativity and expand your vision. These tours are an opportunity to spend a few days enjoying the beauty of nature while learning about other cultures, their history, and to make better photographs. You will return home with great images and improved photographic techniques.

Rose Erato has enjoyed a career as a photographer, artist and interior designer, expressing her passion for the visual arts.  Her photography is concentrated on capturing artistic images of people, animals and travel.  Rose‘s style and artistic eye are reflected in many of the images that she creates in a variety of software applications.  www.roseerato.com

Together, Richard and Rose present exciting and informative programs.  They will assist you with using your camera to make terrific photographs, and will guide you in the process of finding your own artistic vision.  You will enhance your camera skills, fine tune your creative instincts and have lot’s of fun in the process.

www.richardbuchbinder.com, www.roseerato.com

Richard Buchbinder was an excellent workshop organizer and leader in many ways. He is also a fine, dedicated, and skilled person, with an easy to get along with personality. He continually circulated among the participants, looking through viewfinders as requested, and making suggestions.

B. Lewis

Pricing and Details

US Dollars based upon minimum of 7 paying participants. There is a small group surcharge of $400 if 5-6 paying participants. All our program prices are based on double occupancy unless noted in exceptions.

Single rooms are subject to availability. We try to accommodate travelers who request single accommodations, as well as travelers who are looking for a roommate. If a single room is requested, or if we are unable to find a suitable roommate, you will be required to pay the supplement.

Testimonials

Richard Buchbinder was an excellent workshop organizer and leader in many ways. He is also a fine, dedicated, and skilled person, with an easy to get along with personality. He continually circulated among the participants, looking through viewfinders as requested, and making suggestions.

B. Lewis

This was one of the most invigorating trips I’ve been on. Richard was very professional, and assisted us in solving some problems we were having. He works with people quite well, and his knowledge of photography is evident, he also has the ability to pass that knowledge on to others. Richard spent time with each of us, and was always available for questions. The trip was well worth while.

C. Tufts

Thank you Rose for making our trip so amazing.  We had a wonderful time with you and will always remember the great experience we had with you as our tour leader.  Our photos of Africa are awesome. 

S. & Z. Lankford

Terms and Conditions

Unless otherwise noted, this information applies to all tours.

Airfare

Contact Strabo Tours if you would like rates on International Airfare. Please note on your trip application form if you would like us to assist you with your airfare needs, a charge is added for this service. If making your own arrangements, it is important to discuss flight times with Strabo Tours before booking any airline tickets. This will avoid you having to pay airline cancellation penalties. Please contact Strabo Tours for destination airfare estimates, specific flight time arrivals, and departures.

The land cost includes:
  • Group transportation for tour events in the tour van.
  • Accommodations based on two people sharing a room, singles are assigned on a first come, first served basis.
  • Services of driver, English speaking cultural guide (if applicable) and photographic leader, during the tour.
  • Meals as listed in itinerary (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner).
  • Park entrance fees, day tours and excursions as shown in the itinerary.
  • Extensive pre-departure information and services.
The land cost does not include:

Domestic or International air fare; other airfare if noted in exceptions; air fare tax; airport departure tax; airport transfers; additional transfers or accommodations that may be required by those not traveling with the group; excess baggage charges; meals not included in itinerary; activities taken on your own; passport/visa expenses; personal medical or travel insurance; any expenses of a personal nature, such as room service, laundry, beverages not included with meals, medical expenses, photographic equipment, any activities not specified in tour itinerary or listed as optional, or any items not listed in what is included; fuel surcharges; exchange rate surcharges; upon the completion of your trip, modest gratuities to the local guides and the drivers are customary; tips for meals not included in itinerary.

Fitness and Health

The majority of trips are not strenuous (see exceptions below for particular destinations) and anyone who is reasonably fit should be able to take part in most of the activities. You may experience general fatigue due to the long flights and the change in time zones. You will need to be sufficiently agile to climb in and out of the tour van and be able to carry and manage your own equipment. We will frequently hike trails ranging from easy to moderate. Some hotels do not have elevators or air conditioners.

If you have any special needs or any physical condition that you feel might prevent you from fully participating, please contact Strabo Tours with your concerns (607-756-8676).

You should also be aware that medical services or facilities might not be readily available during all or part of your trip. This could include emergency medical care, presence of physicians, or adequate medication.

Exceptions:

The following destinations require more physical activity. Bhutan, China, Patagonia, Peru, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, New Zealand, Scotland, Domestic tours. On the African Safari you will spend many hours in a vehicle on game drives, land travel will sometimes be over very bumpy and dusty roads. Galapagos Cruise accommodations are in upper and lower berths (bunk beds) only.

The following destinations require more physical activity. Bhutan, China, Patagonia, Peru, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, New Zealand, Scotland, Domestic tours. On the African Safari you will spend many hours in a vehicle on game drives, land travel will sometimes be over very bumpy and dusty roads. Galapagos Cruise accommodations are in upper and lower berths (bunk beds) only.

Deposits, Cancellations AND Refunds

A deposit of $750 ($500 on domestic tours) per person is required. Specific tours may require an additional deposit due to accommodation bookings or transportation requirements. If applicable these will be noted on your invoice. Payment in full is required when bookings are made less than 120 days before the departure date. Space is subject to cancellation by Strabo if payment is not received when due.

If a passenger wishes to cancel they must send notification in writing to: Strabo International Tour, Co., P.O. Box 580, Dryden, NY 13053; fax 208-545-4119. At the time we receive your notification, the following per person charges apply:

  • 91 days or more before departure: $300 cancellation fee ($150 fee on domestic tours), plus Strabo’ costs, as well as fees that are charged by the suppliers providing the services included in your tour, and/or the airlines providing the air transportation.
  • 61-90 days before departure: $500 ($250 on domestic tours) minimum cancellation fee, plus Strabo’ costs, as well as fees that are charged by the suppliers providing the services included in your tour, and/or the airlines providing the air transportation. Fees may range from 25% to 100% of tour costs.
  • 60 days or less before departure or anytime after departure: NO REFUND.

Refunds for services that are voluntarily not used by you cannot be made.

Insurance

Each participant must be covered by medical insurance that is valid overseas.

We strongly urge you to evaluate your risk and to take out insurance on your trip. It is vital for you to realize that if you experience a delay or find it necessary to cancel or cut short your trip for any reason, you will lose part or the entire sum you’ve invested in it (see the section “Deposits, Cancellations and Refunds” in the trip brochure).

Travel insurance helps to minimize the risk of monetary losses you would incur in the event of a delay of your departure due to weather, airline strike, missed connection, etc., your inability to travel for reasons such as illness, injury, unforeseen financial complications and other personal circumstances, or if you were required to cut your trip short for medical or any other reasons.

There are restrictions and limitations on any insurance program. For this reason, please read carefully the enclosed pamphlet, which outlines their program of trip cancellation, baggage, and medical insurance. Trained agents are available to answer your questions, so don’t hesitate to call the toll free number in their brochure. It is to your advantage to apply for insurance at the earliest possible time, so don’t delay in making a decision.

Subject to Change

Itineraries have been carefully constructed to assure participants the best each destination has to offer; however, should events arise that are beyond our control, activities and hotel arrangements are subject to change without notice. The itineraries summarize typical areas you will explore. Since there is no possible way to visit all of them, your guides will plan each day considering the interests of the group and the weather at hand. Be assured that we will make substitutions that are as similar in quality and interest as possible.

Photo Release

Strabo International Tour Company, Inc. reserves the right and permission to use photographs of individuals on tour for use in promotional and publicity purposes. We also reserve the right to use clients photographs for promotional and publicity purposes, when submitted to Strabo International Tour Company, Inc.

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