The Isle of Youth...Paradise, Prison, and Possibility?

The New York Times calls it an “island that has played both paradise and prison.”  Travelers on our March 2019 trip will call La Isla de la Juventud, the Isle of Youth, home for two days.  Go beyond the headlines and join us in exploring the Complete Cuba this March.  Get ready by reading the New York Times’ take:

Our March trip has been announced!

Our March trip has been announced!

You can check out the full details at, but highlights will include 4 nights in Havana, including a day trip to untouristed Hershey, Cuba, and an overnight visit to the Isle of Youth, the island that sits just 30 miles off the coast of Cuba but is rarely visited by Americans. Our March trip is acollaboration with Tamarkin Camera, America’s Premier Leica Specialist, so travelers will have the chance to borrow any Leica equipment they would like to try out during the trip, as well as additional photo walks with Dan Tamarkin. Check out and email to reserve your spot today!

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Do you have friends that have been to Cuba?

Saturday Night Live recently did a skit on the type of traveler we do not have on our trips — the kind who never goes off the tourist trail, yet returns confident s/he is an expert on Cuba.  

Our travelers benefit from our extensive experience in Cuba, always meet Cubans who don’t rely on tourists for their livelihood, and always say they’d recommend us to a friend or colleague.  

But we all need a little laugh once in awhile…so…check out this SNL skit for a view of the alternative Cuba travel….

Rangefinder Gallery @ Tamarkin Camera Complete Cuba Exhibit

Earlier this year Complete Cuba and The Rangefinder Gallery cooperatively held an exhibit of photography from past Complete Cuba travelers. This is a brief three minute video of the gallery show.

Complete Cuba Traveler James Rice Reflects On His Experience

Complete Cuba Traveler James Rice Reflects On His Experience

This week we ask you to venture from the Complete Cuba blog and website to take a short read on the blog of Indiana-based photographer James Rice.  Jim traveled with us in March of 2018 with the goal of documenting the real Complete Cuba.

Jims work was included in our Complete Cuba gallery show at The Rangefinder Gallery and has been internationally recognized by LFI Photographie GmbH.

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Anthony Bourdain 1956-2018

Anthony Bourdain changed the way we eat, travel, and engage people all over the world.  His curiosity, reflection, sarcasm, humor, and storytelling are all one of a kind.  

Anthony Bourdain once said, “As you move through this life and this world you change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life — and travel — leaves marks on you. Most of the time, those marks — on your body or on your heart — are beautiful. Often, though, they hurt.”

In 2015, when Complete Cuba was relatively young, Anthony Bourdain traveled to Cuba and encouraged an entirely new interest in the food, culture, music, and people of the island nation.

Please watch Anderson Cooper's remembrance of Anthony Bourdain...

Anderson Cooper pays tribute to Anthony Bourdain

Complete Cuba: Exploring Eastern Cuba

Complete Cuba: Exploring Eastern Cuba

Recently Amy and I spoke at the Chicago Travel Meetup about travel to Eastern Cuba.  This blog post represents much of what we discussed at the presentation and answers to many of the commonly asked questions.  As Cuba became a more popular travel destination during the last 10 years, more and more Americans began traveling to Cuba.  In fact President Obama became the first U.S. President to set foot on the island in 90 years since President Coolidge last departed.

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Complete Cuba Named Top 30 Cuba Blog

Late last year Complete Cuba was awarded the number 6 position in the top 20 Cuba Travel Blogs.  We were very excited to have that honor.  Complete Cuba has just been awarded the top 30 overall Cuba blogs on the web.  Thank you all for following, liking, reading, and traveling with Complete Cuba!

You can check out the awards in the side-bar of our site to check out the list as well as some of the other blogs we are honored to be next to.

Join us in Chicago for an exhibition of photos taken by Complete Cuba travelers!

Friday, April 6 from 6-9 p.m., join us for the opening reception for "Complete Cuba: Travelers' Stories from the Caribbean's Most Enigmatic Island.”  The show, hosted by The Rangefinder Gallery at Tamarkin Camera in Chicago will feature favorite photos by travelers who have visited Cuba with Complete Cuba.  Ranging from images captured on iPhones to ones taken by serious amateur photographers, the photos allow a glimpse beyond the surface into the Complete Cuba — far beyond the beaten path of tourists.  Join us for Cuban beverages and great photographs.    


November 2018 is just around the corner...

This week we are announcing our November 2018 trip is open for reservations. We are already over 1/3 booked on this trip, so check out the website for more information and let us know as soon as possible if you would like to join us for this Eastern Cuba + Havana adventure!

Image of the Week...February 15, 2018

Our Image of the Week is from Gordon Smith, Florida.  Gordon stated he wants to, " the warm, resilient and "enjoying life" spirit that I felt from the Cuban people." 

You can see a more of Gordon's photos from his 2017 Complete Cuba trip (including eastern Cuba and Havana) at

GSmith 6.jpg

Cuba in 2018

2017 was certainly a strange year for Cuba policy.  We saw the new policies of open travel and relaxed limitations move to a time of uncertainty and ultimately a more restrictive foreign policy once again requiring legally registered travel and more regulations on travel.  Regardless of your perspective on these various policies, Cuba is full of people who genuinely want to see Americans and full of great opportunities to share interactions with the people of Cuba.

As we continue to legally bring travelers to Cuba to meet people and experience the Complete Cuba, we see people open their hearts, minds, and create new friendships that last long after their time on the island.  We look forward to being in Cuba again in January.  We hope you consider the opportunity to join our March 2018 group, along with Dan Tamarkin of Tamarkin Camera, for what is sure to be a great trip.  

Treat yourself to a new experience in the new year.  Come experience the Complete Cuba.  For more information check out