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6-night Sailing and Diving Cruise

The 54-foot Vision III yacht is a Sun Odyssey 54DS built in 2003 by world-class French manufacturer Jeanneau. The yacht was completely renovated in 2015. It features 4 cabins and sleeping space for up to 8 guests/3 crew and departs weekly on Sundays from the picturesque Cienfuegos Marina. Departures are guaranteed with a minimum of just 2 passengers per week. You can book individual space, or charter the yacht on an exclusive basis. 3 daily meals, snacks and non-alcoholic beverages are included, as are 13 dives per diver.

Experienced crew included. Your one week sailing and diving itinerary includes stops at Rancho Luna, Cayo Guano del Este, Cayo Trabuco, Cayo Largo with an optional trip to Cayo Rosario, then Cayo Sigua before returning to the beautiful port of Cienfuegos on Friday evening.

Dive sites include caves, labyrinths, shipwrecks, 1000 meter drop-offs, abundant marine life. While not diving you will explore virgin beaches, islands, national parks and discover an abundance of local flora and fauna. This package is a unique and attractively-priced opportunity for divers and nature lovers alike. For groups of US travelers seeking programs compliant with the general educational people to people license, please view suggested itinerary below.

Equipment & Rates

 Type Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 54 DS
 Length  54 feet
Features 4 Cabins
Two double ensuite cabins at stern with private washrooms/shower
One double ensuite cabin starboard with private washrooms/showers
1 double bunk cabin with shared washroom at discounted rate
Crew quarters
 Capacity  8 pax, 2 crew
 Prices in USD $1,550 USD/ person diving
$1,100 USD/ person sailing/snorkeling
Valid for departures through 19-May-2018

Minimum booking requirement: 2 travelers required for departure

Typical Itinerary

Day 1 – Sunday 09:00 Embark from Cienfuegos Marina

11:00 Punta Gavilan

24:00 Arrive Cayo Guano del Este, overnight

Day 2 – Monday 09:00 Cayo Trabuco (2 miles from Cayo Guano)

14:00 Cayo Sal or Punta del Este

23:00 Anchorage Punta Sirena, overnight

Day 3 – Tuesday 09:00 Cayo Hijo de Los Ballenatos

21:00 Anchorage Punta Sirena, overnight

Day 4 – Wednesday 08:00 Cayo Iguana

14:00 Playa Sirena

17:00 Cayo Largo Marina, overnight

Day 5 – Thursday 13:00 Cayo Los Ballenatos

21:00 Anchorage Cayo Guano del Este, overnight

Day 6 – Friday 09:00 Sail on the Caribbean

22:00 Arrival Cienfuegos marina

Day 7 – Saturday 09:00 Disembark Cienfuegos Marina

Duration
Trips run weekly with six nights of accommodation.
Embark: Sundays at 9:00 am from the Cienfuegos Marina
Disembark: Saturdays at 9:00 am from the Cienfuegos Marina

Diving

13 dives included. Night dives are held at the divemaster’s discretion based on safety and your experience.

The divemaster accompanying the cruise has over a decade of experience diving and is a regional diving expert.

Included

  • 3 meals daily, snacks, fruit, coffee, tea, juice
  • Skipper, Service Crew, Divemaster (on trips with divers only)
  • Weights, Tanks & Belts for divers
  • Cleaning & toiletries
  • Bed linens & towels
  • For divers: 13 Dives – 11 daytime dives, 1 night dive, 1 cave dive

Not Included

  • For divers: Obligatory marina fees: $180 CUC/person/tour ($30 CUC/person/day)
  • For non-divers: Obligatory marina fees: $72 CUC/person/tour ($12 CUC/person/day), Optional snorkeling gear ($20 CUC/person)
  • Ground transfers to/from Cienfuegos marina
  • Additional optional diving equipment (weekly fees as follows):

Fins 15 CUC, Mask 15 CUC, BCD 75 CUC, Regulator 75 CUC, Computer 50 CUC, BCD/Regulator/Computer 150 CUC, Full Package 175 CUC

Above excluded fees are payable locally.

  • Medical, trip cancellation, and diving insurance

 

Requires

  • Local presentation of foreign passport and international dive accreditation.
  • Note: Cuban nationals require prior authorization from the National Coast Guard to board the Vision III.

Dive Trip features

Your first live-aboard stop is at Rancho Luna, where you will have an opportunity for two dives, including a dive site known as the ‘The Labyrinth’, with a captivating coral landscape and a small shipwreck. Enjoy lunch aboard the Vision III. Afternoon cruise to overnight anchorage.

Banco Jagua is famous for two caravels discovered here sitting just 30 nautical miles from the Cienfuegos shoreline. The gold found aboard is now on public display in a Havana museum. Hammerhead sharks are occasionally sighted here.

Note: Diving at this location is weather-dependent as it offers no shelter in the event of rough seas. Your Captain will determine its accessibility for your sailing itinerary after consulting current local weather forecasts and maritime authorities.

Cayo Sigua is one of the best dive spots on Cuba’s Caribbean coast. It’s attractions include a vertical wall stretching for several kilometers, sting rays, turtles, and frequent shark sightings. A nearby underwater cave is also often a stop for experienced divers only.

Fluorescent night diving is a trip highlight.

Detailed itinerary (for US People to People exchanges)

Exploration of Cuban culture and Marine flora and fauna

The goal of the operator’s People to People program is to introduce American citizens to the people of Cuba, their unique culture, and undeniably positive attitude despite the everyday hardships they face. Our goal is also to explore the current state of the coral reef, the decay of certain species in the region due to global warming, and to attract attention and financial support to the region of Cayo Sigua. It is worth noting that this trip is designed to be educational and thought-provoking, rather than recreational in nature. Guests are accompanied by Cuban personnel at all times. Participants are picked up at their point of arrival and transferred to the port of boarding. Meals are provided throughout the journey.

ITINERARY

Day 1: Cienfuegos Presentation by Jorge Alberto Cabello Eras, a marine biologist from Cienfuegos, Cuba. Jorge will provide an overview of the flora, fauna and current conditions of the reef which will be a foundation for the days to come.

Mandatory immigration clearance and safety briefing.

Upon departing the Cienfuegos Bay, participants will be delivered a lecture on Cienfuegos’ unfinished nuclear reactor, a relic of the Soviet era. It is representative case of some of the unfinished infrastructure of the Soviet era in Cuba.

Day 2: Rancho Luna Exploration of the nearby coral reef. Its unique shape contributed to its name, the Labyrinth. The highlight of the dive is called “Coral de Notre Dame”, standing 5 meters tall. Participants will also explore a sunken marine boat.

Participants will be communicating with the Cuban divemaster, and the skipper between dives and during the day/evening. Some of the conversation topics will include how much Cubans rely on fish as a source of food, and the intricacies of the government policies that considerably restrict access to foreign-registered marine vessels by the majority of citizens. The captain usually contributes with some of the operational challenges he faces as well. For example, it is illegal for the vessel to dock at locations other than those specified in the operator’s contract and established itinerary. This is motivated in part by restrictions on unauthorized Cuban nationals boarding the vessel of foreign registry and the extraordinary measures Cuban coast guard authorities undertake to avoid that eventuality, and also for protection of marine areas.

Day 3-5: Cayo Sigua Decay of the coral reef

Interspersed with dives exploring the reef, participants will be introduced to some the current challenges of the region. Although there is a significant lack of visual aids documenting the state of the coral reef, with the help of our local experienced team, visitors can be taken 10 to 15 years back, to bring their attention to the growing problem of changing global weather patterns, and how this phenomemon affects what they are now seeing in terms of marine life in the region.

The remote area of Cayo Sigua is somewhat removed from the mainland, and due to limited local financial resources, receives little support in terms of marine protection. Sail Tomorrow’s lectures focus on bringing this issue to the attention of participants.

Lighthouse

One of the most visually striking examples of under-supported Cuban infrastructure in the area is the lighthouse installed on a deserted island. Destroyed by a storm some years back, its repair remains pending.

Deadly Fish

A special lecture will be dedicated to a poisonous type of fish flourishing in the area. Due to a particular compound of the reef, it accumulates toxins in its body, making it lethal for human consumption.

Day 6: Cayo Largo The vessel will stop at Cayo Largo to explore the turtle farm, and to discover Cuba’s program of reintroducing farm-grown turtles into the wild. The visit includes a trip to Cayo iguana with abundant wildlife, and the unique area of Playa Sirena featuring a special compound with a ground surface that resembles natural sand, but does not absorb light, and therefore does not heat up even on the warmest of days.
Day 7: Cienfuegos Disembark from the vessel, return airport transfer.

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