Cuba with Azamara Club Cruises

cuba children 2My journey to Cuba with Azamara Club Cruises was a wonderful experience and I would highly recommend this opportunity to explore Cuba.  I have sailed with Azamara several times and thoroughly enjoy the size of ship and amenities on board.  Couple highlights on Cuba:

• The local tour guides that we booked thru Azamara were good to excellent, and we learned a great deal.  Once the tour is finished, you are free to wander around on your own.
• Very little crime in Cuba, we always felt safe walking around.
• I loved the architecture in Havana – what a beautiful city!  Many buildings have been restored, others damaged by age, neglect, or hurricane damage (most recently Irma last fall).
• There are 4 main plazas in Havana, all lovely!   The Plaza de San Francisco is right across from the pier, and the others are all within walking distance (Plaza Vieja, Plaza de Armas, Plaza de la Cathedral).  
• Music is everywhere, and quite good.  The band will ask you to purchase their CD, or otherwise a cash donation, so helpful to have cash on hand.  
• Vintage US cars are everywhere – we were told there are over 60,000 on the island.  The bright colors are beautiful!  You can negotiate with the owner for a ride.  
• We visited 2 other Cuban ports of call – Santiago de Cuba and Cienfuegos, both with historical interest.  Full day tours at both (at Cienfuegos, we chose to go to the nearby city of Trinidad).  All have been declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites.  

Azamara highlights:
• Azamara hosts one Azamazing Evening on each cruise – it is complimentary, but make sure to sign up for it.  For this itinerary, it was a wonderful performance of Cuban music and dance at a beautiful local theater.
• Azamara hosts a “White Night” on every cruise, which was lovely.  Held outdoors, the food quality and variety were excellent.  Since it was very windy and chilly, the crew brought out blankets for those of us who needed them!  Remember to bring your white attire!
• If interested in dining at the Specialty Restaurants, at this point they can only be booked once onboard. Times fill up extremely quickly, especially for days at sea so board as early as possible, and go immediately to book reservations before even going to their cabin.  The food and ambiance at both Aqualina and Prime C were excellent, $30 per person unless staying in a suite.

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