Cuba Steam Safari

Saturday 13th March to Sunday 28th March 2021
16 - Days


Prices from: £4195


Impressive colonial architecture, fantastic white beaches, classic steam locos and an infectious Latin feel make this exotic country well worth the visit on this highlight-packed rail tour.


Departure Date: 13-Mar-2021
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  • Enjoy sightseeing in Cuba’s capital Havana, with a visit to a tobacco factory and a sun set classic car ride, and travel on a privately chartered Budd railcar along the Cuban mainline.
  • Take a trip on the Rafael Freyre narrow-gauge railway, the ‘jewel in the crown’ of Cuba’s cane railroads, behind a Baldwin 2-8-0, following the route of a sugar cane train to Altuna.
  • Visit the curve at Barjay - the ‘most famous photo spot in Cuba’ – and have afternoon adventures at Rafael Freyre with classic locos steaming just for you.
  • There’s a morning city tour of Santiago to savour with time for sightseeing, and a steam hauled journey to Guantanamo with fantastic views across the Bay to the famous US Naval Base.
  • Discover Cienfuegos, Cuba’s so-called ‘Pearl of the South’ on a coach trip and enjoy a ride along the coast to Trinidad, all cobbled streets and classic Spanish colonial architecture.
  • With stays at luxury hotels and resorts, fabulous cuisine, the services of a tour manager and relaxing interludes between epic steam adventures, this tour is a must for seasoned traveller and steam newcomer alike.

Saturday 13th March
Arrive in Havana
You fly mid-morning from London to Havana, arriving in the evening. After a short coach transfer, you check into your 4-star hotel Havana Libre where you will have dinner. (D)

Sunday 14th March
Tour of Havana
On your first full day in Cuba you enjoy a morning sightseeing tour of Cuba’s fascinating capital. After lunch you visit the tobacco factory and later take a ride in a classic car as the sun sets. Afterwards, you return to the Hotel Havana Libre for dinner. (B D)

Monday 15th March
Cuban Mainline Tour
Today you join a privately chartered self-propelled diesel multiple unit Budd railcar for an inspiring journey along the Cuban mainline, through Santa Clara and Camaguey and on to Cacocum, where you take the branch line to Holguin. There’s a bar on the train and a tasty boxed lunch will be provided. All drinks and refreshments are free. From Holguin you transfer by coach to your 4-star hotel, the all-inclusive Hotel Playa Pesquero, for dinner and evening refreshments. (B L D)

Tuesday 16th Marc
h Private charter to Rafael Freyre narrow-gauge cane railroad
After a leisurely breakfast you depart early for Rafael Freyre, the most beautiful of all Cuba’s surviving narrow-gauge railways. This 2’6” gauge operation was undoubtedly the ‘jewel in the crown’ of Cuba’s cane railroads, with extensive operations through beautiful countryside in north-eastern Cuba. Taking one of the Baldwin 2-8-0s on a special charter, you’ll follow the route of a sugar cane train eastwards to Altuna and – if possible – beyond. On the return journey you’ll enjoy some exciting run pasts before returning to Hotel Playa Pasquero. (B L D)

Wednesday 17th March
Barjay Curve Photo Opportunities at Rafael Freyre
You have a couple of options today, the first sees you return to Rafael Freyre, this time to head west with an empty cane train hauled by a Baldwin 2-8-0. You return to the Mill late morning, heading for lunch at the hotel before the afternoon’s entertainment, a classic 0-6-0 to steamed especially for you at mid-afternoon at Rafael Freyre, with the 0-6-0 and a 2-8-0 also available for photos on the famous Barjay curve. You return to Hotel Playa Pasquero for dinner and overnight accommodation. Alternately, you may choose to spend the day simply relaxing at your fabulous ‘all inclusive’ beach resort. (B L D)

Thursday 18th March
Bayamo
This morning you transfer by coach to Bayamo where you join your steam passenger train hauled by 2-8-0 1757 to Yara. From here your locomotive will haul an empty cane train to Bartolome Masso Mill, providing some wonderful photo opportunities along the way. Dinner and overnight accommodation will be in Bayamo. (B L D)

Friday 19th March
Santiago
Re-joining your passenger train at Bayamo station today, you’ll be steam hauled by 2-8-0 1590 to Santiago along this scenic line dotted with high viaducts and dramatically steep gradients. Arriving in Santiago, you’ll check in for a stay at the 4-star Hotel Melia Santiago de Cuba. (B L D)

Saturday 20th March
Option of Santiago sightseeing or a trip to Guantanamo Bay
Again, today you have a choice of things to do. Choose from a morning city tour of Santiago with a free afternoon sightseeing, or join a steam hauled train at San Luis for the superbly scenic journey to Guantanamo. Provided you arrive at Guantanamo on time you’ll continue by railcar along the branch line to Caimanera, with fantastic views across the Bay to the famous US Naval Base of Guantanamo Bay. Afterwards you return to Hotel Melia Santiago by coach. (B L D)

Sunday 21st March
Budd railcar to Moron
This morning a comfortable coach takes you to Santiago station, for a chartered railcar trip to Moron. You arrive at Moron station a little after lunch and join a steam hauled train for a ride around a 5km stretch of the former rail system serving the cane fields. From there, you transfer by coach to your excellent hotel in Moron. (B L D)

Monday 22nd March
The Florencia Gorge; Port of Caibarien and back with a Baldwin
After breakfast you transfer to Moron station where a Baldwin 2-8-0 (from Ciro Redondo Mill) will be waiting to take you on a dramatic journey to Florencia, passing through a fabulous Gorge where you’ll enjoy some great run pasts. From there you continue to the former Marcelo Salado Mill, where there’s a collection of interesting ex-Minaz steam locomotives held. In the afternoon you have a special steam charter train to the Port of Caibarien and back with a Baldwin mogul. Afterwards you transfer to an all-inclusive 4-star hotel at Cayo Santa Maria. (B L D)

Tuesday 23rd March
Special charter to Fomento
Today you transfer to J.M Perez Mill after breakfast, and join your special steam hauled charter train on the stunning line that runs through the hills to Fomento, running along high embankments and tall viaducts, and which used to run right through to Trinidad. Returning to J.M Perez Mill, you’ll dine and stay overnight in Cayo Santa Maria. (B L D)

Wednesday 24th March
Steam to Cienfuegos
You’ll transfer to Canajuani station this morning to catch a special steam hauled charter train, taking the main line to Santa Clara and on to Cienfuegos, Cuba’s so-called ‘Pearl of the South’. The Sierra del Escambray mountains rise as a pretty backdrop to the cityscape, and its impressive boulevard runs along the Jagua Bay, with its quiet waters and refreshing breeze. After a short sightseeing tour of this attractive city you transfer to hotel Jagua for dinner and an overnight stay. (B L D)

Thursday 25th March
Coach along the coast to Trinidad
After breakfast you take a coach ride along the coast to Trinidad, a city of cobbled streets and classic Spanish colonial architecture. It’s an extravaganza of beautiful palaces, airy squares, and colonial homes, so well preserved that it is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Trinidad boasts some fine museums, and a choice of restaurants where you can buy lunch. In the afternoon you’ll pick up your private charter train at Trinidad for a journey along the valley to Iznaga. You return by train to Trinidad and transfer by coach to the hotel Jagua in Cienfuegos. (B D)

Friday 26th March
Australia and Esteban Hernandez
Fresh this morning from yesterday’s trip, you board a coach for the former Australia Mill where you’ll visit the fascinating steam locomotive collection before taking a steam hauled train ride on the museum train. From there you head for the narrow-gauge railway at Esteban Hernandez for an exciting train ride hauled by Baldwin steam locomotive 1329. From there it’s onwards to Varadero where you check in to your beachside all-inclusive hotel for dinner. (B L D)

Saturday 27th March
Visit to the Jose Smith Comas Museum; steam to Martinez Prieto Mill
If you feel like a break, today’s the day to enjoy a free morning relaxing on the beach. If not, there’s a visit to the steam collection at Jose Smith Comas museum arranged, followed by a private steam hauled charter with an empty cane train down the ‘freight only’ line to the picturesque town of Cardenas. This route is packed with superb photo opportunities! You return to your hotel in Varadero for lunch before setting off for Havana and a visit to M Martinez Prieto Mill, where you’ll see tank locomotive 1205 in steam, shunting in the yard. Then it’s onwards to Havana airport by coach, to (reluctantly) check in for the late afternoon flight bound for London (B L)

Sunday 28th March
Fly back to London
You arrive back at London in the morning.


Details

Price

  • Tour price £4895
  • Single supplement £495
  • Ground only £4195

All prices shown are per person based on two persons sharing.

Price Includes

  • Return flights from London to Havana
  • 14 nights hotel accommodation and breakfast
  • 12 lunches
  • 14 dinners
  • All train travel, transfers, visits and tours as detailed in the itinerary
  • Charter and special trains as detailed in the itinerary
  • The services of a tour manager

Meals included each day are shown as:
B = Breakfast - L = Lunch - D = Dinner


Map feature coming soon!