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If yes, please email info@charitychallenge.com and one of our team will be in touch to help with your enquiry.

2025

Special offer

 25TH BIRTHDAY  

Use the code 25BIRTHDAY for 25% off your reg fee for 25 days!

9am Mon 10 June until Midnight Thurs 4th July 2024

T&C's apply

Sat 15 Nov - Mon 24 Nov 2025

OVERVIEW

What to expect

ITINERARY

What you will do

COSTS

Ways to pay

ESSENTIAL INFO

All you need to know

Your challenge day by day

Day 1, Sat 15 Nov 2025

International departure from London

It’s finally time for your long-awaited departure to Cuba. Wave goodbye to friends and family, before you board the flight and embark upon your challenge!

On arrival in Havana, you will be met at the airport by your Charity Challenge local expedition leader who will transfer you to your hotel for a welcome cocktail and dinner. (D)

Accommodation: Hotel

1

Day 2, Sun 16 Nov 2025

Discover Havana and transfer to Hanabanilla Lake (approx. 5hrs)

Founded in 1519, Havana is the Caribbean’s largest city and you will have plenty of time to explore it. Among other attractions in the Cuban capital, you will visit Old Havana, Plaza de Armas and Cathedral Square street markets. After lunch, you will leave the city for your transfer (four to five hours) to Hanabanilla Lake, where you will overnight in a hotel. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Hotel

2

Day 3, Mon 17 Nov 2025

Hiking in Hanabanilla Lake (approx. 5-6hrs)

After breakfast you set off from the hotel on foot to trek around Hanabanilla Reservoir. The hotel and reservoir are set high in the Escambray Mountains, and this was formerly a favourite spot for high level Cuban leaders to come to rest, walk and fish. The hotel is simple, but the surroundings are spectacular and provide a wonderful introduction to Cuban endemic flora and fauna. Expect to see the Cuban National Bird, the Tocororo, and many others who make their habitat in the lush tropical vegetation. The hike takes you along narrow paths around the lakeside, and into the tropical forest where you’ll be introduced to some of Cuba’s extraordinary flora and fauna. A steep climb takes you up to El Atalaya viewpoint with incredible views across surrounding forests and mountains. Then take a steep descent to the lakeside where your boat awaits, to take you to for a Cuban country lunch. Arrive back at the hotel mid afternoon to relax after your first days hike before tonights dinner. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Hacienda or Hotel

3

Day 4, Tue 18 Nov 2025

From Lake Hanabanilla to Salto de Rocio (approx.7-8hrs)

Lake Hanabanilla is Cuba’s largest man-made reservoir, surrounded by tropical vegetation and small farmsteads. You will take a boat across the lake and continue trekking passed coffee plantations tucked into the forest to Casa de la Gallega, an old hacienda. A further hour’s walk brings you to the Salto de Rocio, a 25m high waterfall. From here you will transfer to your accommodation for the next two nights. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Hacienda or Hotel

4

Day 5, Wed 19 Nov 2025

Hike Caburni to Vegas Grandes (approx. 6-7hrs)

Over the next couple of days, you will trek across the awe inspiring Escambray Mountains, Cuba’s second largest range. The highest peak is Pico San Juan at 1,140m. The slopes are swathed in Caribbean pines and an abundance of ancient tree-ferns, bamboo and eucalyptus. After breakfast you will have an arduous, mostly uphill trek along the trail known as Caburní -Vegas Grandes. This trail takes you through dense vegetation deep into the heart of the Escambray Mountains until an astonishing waterfall and natural pond Vegas Grandes. Enjoy a Cuban country lunch before walking back to the hotel. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Hacienda or Hotel

5

Day 6, Thu 20 Nov 2025

Topes de Collantes to Vega Grande (approx. 7-8hrs)

After breakfast it’s an arduous – mostly uphill trek – along the Vega Grande, which means large fertile plain.  This trail takes you through dense vegetation deep into the heart of the Escambray Mountains. You reach Mi Retiro hacienda for a late lunch, before returning for an overnight stay in the hotel in Topes de Collantes. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Hotel

6

Day 7, Fri 21 Nov 2025

Topes de Collantes to El Cubano (approx. 5-6hrs)

The last day of your trek is through dry scrub with occasional views of the turquoise Caribbean. As the hours pass, you visit our third and final waterfall before celebrating your achievements with lunch and cocktails at a local restaurant. From here you drive to the coast of the Ancon Peninsula, just outside Trinidad. The night is spent in a hotel on southern Cuba’s best beach. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Hotel

7

Day 8, Sat 22 Nov 2025

Relaxation and transfer back to Havana

Chill out at the beach or in the hotel pool. Alternatively, you can explore the charming town of Trinidad. With its cobbled streets and colonial housing, this UNESCO World Heritage Site has hardly changed in more than 150 years. Later you transfer back to Havana for a celebratory dinner and the chance to sample some of Cuba’s finest exports – rum and cigars! Overnight in centrally located hotel. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Hotel

8

Day 9, Sun 23 Nov 2025

Free day in Havana and Departure

Spend more time sight-seeing or perhaps take part in a salsa or rumba lesson. If you’re feeling hungry you could grab a bite at one of Havanas many paladares (local Cuban houses that cater for paying guests). Afternoon transfer to the airport for your overnight flight home. (Please note lunch or Dinner is not included today). (B)

9

Day 10, Mon 24 Nov 2025

International departure

You arrive back in the UK at London Heathrow airport in the afternoon.

10

Important information

B = Breakfast; L = Lunch; D = Dinner
The itinerary is there as a guide and may change due to unusual weather patterns, the strength of the group, and so on. We will do our very best to keep to the set itinerary; however we cannot be held responsible for any last minute changes that might occur. In all such circumstances, your expedition leader will have the final say.

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We hold an Air Travel Organiser's Licence granted by the Civil Aviation Authority. Our ATOL number is 6546. Many of the flight-inclusive challenges on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. But ATOL protection does not apply to all holiday and travel services listed on this website. This ATOL protection only covers challenges that include flights booked by Charity Challenge and that originate in the UK. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected. Please see our booking conditions for information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.atol.org.uk/ATOLcertificate

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