On this top-rated and popular tour, feel the entrancing rhythms of Old Havana, Cienfuegos, and Trinidad on our unique people-to-people cultural exchange, where you'll learn about the history, culture, and contemporary issues of this fascinating island nation.

Starting at: $6,590 Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Historic building with vintage automobiles, Havana  Musician in Havana  Cathedral Square in the evening, Havana  Typical scene in Havana. Credit: Giancarlo Bisone  Musician in Havana  Santeria procession. Credit: Jia Han Dong  Street in Old Havana  Shades of blue in the bustling streets of Havana. Credit: Galli Levy  Shop owner. Credit: Jia Han Dong  Rumba dancer at Guanabacoa Museum. Credit: Jia Han Dong  Traditional bar. Credit: Jia Han Dong  Fishing along Havana's Malecón. Credit: Jia Han Dong  Students in classroom, Cienfuegos. Credit: Jia Han Dong  One of many musical performances. Credit: Jia Han Dong  Malecón, called "lover's boulevard" by the locals, stretching for four miles along Havana's north coast. Credit: Jia Han Dong  Square in Cienfuegos, Cuba

Discover Cuba: Its People and Culture

Featuring Havana, Cienfuegos, and Trinidad

7 days from $6,590

On this top-rated and popular tour, feel the entrancing rhythms of Old Havana, Cienfuegos, and Trinidad on our unique people-to-people cultural exchange, where you'll learn about the history, culture, and contemporary issues of this fascinating island nation.

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details


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The idea of a ‘people to people cultural exchange’ extended to the dynamics of our group. We were fairly diverse economically, geographically, and politically, yet were able to find common ground at some point during the trip and shared a beautiful communal experience. 

- Brent S.

Discover Cuba was an intensely educational program that opened my eyes to this Caribbean country, its people, and its culture that for so long have been off limits to me. 

- Previous Journeys Traveler

I have been on a lot of very good tours but nothing compares with this Smithsonian experience. 

- Mary-Jeanne M.


See All Journeys Dispatches ››

Nov 2 - 8, 2017 Departure; Dec 7 - 13, 2017 Departure; Mar 9 - 15, 2018 Departure
Felix Masud-Piloto

Felix Masud-Piloto

Felix Masud-Piloto was born and raised in Havana, Cuba and immigrated with his parents to the U.S. in 1961. In 1975 he graduated from Florida International University with a B.A. in Political Science, and later earned a M.A. in International Relations, and a Ph.D. in History in 1985, both from Florida State University.

Before joining DePaul University in 1990, Dr. Masud-Piloto was Visiting Professor at Cornell University, where he helped organize and launch that institution’s Latino Studies Program. From 1992 to 2009 he directed DePaul’s Center for Latino Research, and was the founding editor of Diálogo, a multidisciplinary journal of Latin American and Latino affairs. He currently holds the rank of Professor in the Department of History and directs the department’s graduate studies program. He regularly teaches courses on Latin American Revolutions, Immigration, the Cuban Revolution, the Caribbean, the Southern Cone, and Latinos in the U.S. He has traveled extensively in Latin America and lectures regularly on his areas of expertise.  For more than twenty years, he has led Study Abroad Programs in Cuba, Chile, and Argentina.

Professor Masud-Piloto is the author of With Open Arms: Cuban Migration to the U.S. and its revised and expanded edition, From Welcomed Exiles to Illegal Immigrants: The Cuban Migration to the U.S., 1959-1995, and is presently working on Contesting Asylum: Cuba, Peru, the U.S., and the Cuban Refugee Crisis of 1980, a history of the Mariel boatlift and its impact on U.S.-Cuba relations.  He is also the author of numerous articles, book chapters, and essays on Latin American immigration, Latinos in the U.S., and U.S.-Cuba relations. He serves on the Editorial Boards of Cuban Studies and The Latino Review of Books.

Dr. Masud-Piloto travels frequently to Cuba for research, and in 1994, 1995, and 2005, he participated in a series of dialogues between the Cuban Government and members of the Cuban Exile Community.   He co-Chaired the Section on Scholarly Relations with Cuba in the Latin American Studies Association (LASA) from 2005 to 2008, and is a founding member of the Emergency Network of Cuban-American Scholars and Artists (ENCASA/USA) Steering Committee, an organization that advocates for the normalization of U.S.-Cuba relations. In 2007, The Cuban Ministry of Culture awarded Professor Masud-Piloto the Distinción por la Cultura Nacional Medal for his contributions to the scholarly study of Cuban history, and for his lifelong work building academic and cultural bridges between the U.S. and Cuba. 

Nov 9 - 15, 2017 Departure; Jan 12 - 18, 2018 Departure; Feb 16 - 22, 2018 Departure
Emilio Cueto

Emilio Cueto

Emilio Cueto is an expert in Cuban culture, especially colonial graphic art and music. He left Cuba at age 17, one week after the Bay of Pigs landing, and was one of the first exiles to visit in the 1970s. Emilio has returned many times since and is an avid collector of Cuban memorabia. He has exhibited portions of his collection in Miami's Historical Museum of Southern Florida and prepared the three catalogs accompanying those exhibitions: Mialhe's Colonial Cuba (1994), Cuba in old maps (1999), and Illustrating Cuba's flora and fauna (2002). In addition, he has written an illustrated work on the Patroness of Cuba, Our Lady of Charity (2014), a monograph on how the Cuban province of Camaguey has been featured in music (2014), and a coffee-table book on Cuba's impact in the United States (2016). He has also organized five concerts of Cuba-related music at Florida International University in Miami. A retired attorney, Emilio previously worked for the Inter-American Development Bank in Washington, D.C. 

Featured Expert Stories

The Surprising History of Cuba's Patron Saint
Smithsonian Journeys Quarterly; October 27, 2016.

A Q&A with Expert Emilio Cueto

Jan 26 - Feb 1, 2018 Departure
Franklin Knight

Franklin Knight

Franklin W. Knight joined the faculty of the Johns Hopkins University in 1973. He was appointed the Leonard and Helen R. Stulman Professor of History from 1991 to 2014, when he entered emeritus status. Knight’s research interests focus on social, political and cultural aspects of Latin America and the Caribbean especially after the eighteenth century as well as on American slave systems in their comparative dimensions.  Knight has lectured widely across North and South America, as well as in Europe, Australia, and Japan. He has traveled to Cuba 63 times during the past 35+ years.

Knight has graduated from the University College of the West Indies-London in 1964 where he earned a B.A. He also earned M. A. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Wisconsin in Madison. He taught for several years at the State University of New York in Stony Brook, and was a visiting lecturer at the University of Texas in Austin, Howard University, Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, Colgate University, and in Spain at the Pablo de Olavide University, The University of Huelva, and the University of Andalucía. He has also served on visiting advisory committees of Harvard University, Princeton University, City University of New York, Swarthmore College, Ohio State University, Colgate University, The Schomburg Library, The University of Florida at Gainesville and the University of Puerto Rico at Rio Piedras.

Knight has held research fellowships from the Social Science Research Council, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, the Ford Foundation, and the National Humanities Center. He has served on committees of the Social Science Research Council, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Inter-American Foundation, the National Research Council, the American Historical Association, the Conference of Latin American History, The Latin American Studies Association, The American Council of Learned Societies, The Historical Society, and the Association of Caribbean Historians. He is a founding member of The Asociación de Historiadores de América Latina y el Caribe (ADHILAC), the Asociación de Historiadores Latinoamericanos (AHILA), and The Asociación de Historia Económica del Caribe (AHEC).

His analyses of Latin American and Caribbean problems have been aired on National Public Radio, the Voice of America, the British Broadcasting Corporation, the McNeill/Lehrer Report, C-Span, as well as on many local programs on commercial and public radio and television stations across the United States. He served as academic consultant and appeared in seven television programs Columbus and the Age of DiscoveryThe Buried Mirror;  AmericasPlagued: Invisible ArmiesCrucible of Empire: The War of 1898The Crucible of the Millennium; and The Louisiana Purchase.