History & Modern Studies Trip to Cuba
Following the first hugely successful trip to Cuba in 2008, Dollar Academy's History & Modern Studies Department decided to return this spring with a group of 17 pupils eager to discover just what Cuba under Raul Castro is like. In 9 days the group managed to travel from the capital Havana all the way to Santiago de Cuba in the south – a journey of just under 1000 miles – and back!
Visiting the crucial historical towns of Santa Clara, where revolutionary Che Guevara is buried, Camaguey and Trinidad, with their Spanish colonial past fused with a more recent and exciting revolutionary present and Santiago de Cuba, where Fidel Castro first launched his revolutionary movement in 1953.
The group followed his rebellious footsteps all the way into the Sierra Maestra mountains to locate his base camp still maintained as it was back in the 1950s. Havana, both our first and final taste of Cuba on the trip, was simply magnificent. An enormous, bustling, colourful city set on a sea front where fisherman sat hoping for the next big fish while classic Cadillacs and Chevrolets, looking as if they had just rolled off their 1940s production lines, trundled past.
Whether it was the rum museum, the cigar factory, the Hotel where Graham Green and Al Capone had stayed or just simply the ever present samba rhythms – everyone left with a clearer sense of Cuba, her culture and people.