Ponant Sets Schedule and Reveals Itinerary for Cuba Return

by Daniel McCarthy
Ponant Sets Schedule and Reveals Itinerary for Cuba Return

The museum at Playa Giron, which will be a featured excursion for guests on Ponant's Cuba itinerary. Photo: Riderfoot/Shutterstock.com.


Luxury expedition cruise line Ponant will return to Cuba with a sailing in January 2019, the company announced this week.

Ponant will sail its “Cuba: History, Culture & Contemporary Life” itinerary on Jan. 25, 2019. The eight-day sailing on the Le Ponant will call at Santiago de Cuba, Trinidad, Punta Frances, and Cienfuegos.

Le Ponant, the company’s original 64-passenger sailing vessel, offers 32 staterooms onboard, each with a porthole; as well as two restaurants and two lounges.

Onboard the Cuba sailings, Ponant will offer lectures about the country’s history, including one from Franklin W. Knight, professor of history at Johns Hopkins University. Knight, who has been featured on NPR, the BBC and PBS, will also accompany guests onshore on excursions such as dance and musical performances, tours of artists’ studios, and visits with owners of casas particulare (local private homes).

The itinerary will also offer a side trip to the infamous Bay of Pigs and Playa Giron at Cienfuegos; a walking tour in Trinidad; and a visit to Punta Frances on the Isla de la Juventud.

Ponant, though it positions itself as a French cruise line, sails with a bilingual crew and markets to “a wanderlust global traveler,” according to Edie Rodriguez, brand chairman and special advisor, and former Crystal Cruises president and CEO.

“It’s an active traveler who is young at heart, but it is an international global guest who is really wanting to immerse,” Rodriguez said during a press conference earlier this year to announce the brand’s plan to grow its fleet to 12 ships by 2021.

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