Our voyages combine hands-on sailing adventure with a chance to experience historic change underway in the spectacular marine environments of southern Cuba.
Each leg of your journey will explore the quickening pace of change in Cuba, a proud island neighbor now emerging from a half-century of isolation from the United States. Aboard our Maine schooner, you’ll navigate by the stars, snorkel on remote reefs, explore cays and mangroves – and engage directly in the dialogue about a post-embargo Cuba.
Cuba is undergoing fundamental transformation, with deep consequences for Cubans and Americans. Our voyages will seize this moment to explore the causes and effects – from the unique perspective of a Tall Ship and with a commitment to responsible stewardship of these marine environments.
To prepare our Cuba program, we sailed to Havana in winter 2016 for President Obama’s historic visit, then traversed Cuba’s long coastline to explore harbors and sailing routes. We chose our new homeport of Cienfuegos and explored Cuba’s extraordinary coral reefs, isolated islands and cays and unique geological features – all with an eye towards creating the most compelling voyages possible.
Voyaging on a traditional Tall Ship is a life-changing experience. You’ll have more fun than you can imagine while learning ship rigging, mastering its mechanical systems and taking your shift on watch at the ship’s bow. We’ll work and eat and play together, waking up to dramatic ocean dawns, gliding through pristine Caribbean waters and swapping stories in the galley at night. You’ll visit rural vegetable markets and primitive dockside facilities, isolated fishing villages, and historic cities and towns, all along engaging with ordinary Cubans who are just as eager to meet us.
All the while, you’ll build personal confidence and forge the lifelong bonds of a ship community sharing an extraordinary moment in history -- up close and personal.
When the Harvey Gamage anchors in her Cuban homeport of Cienfuegos, students aboard will be both able sailors and citizen diplomats, encouraged to participate in dialogue about the changes in Cuba.
Traveling by sea and under sail, you’ll experience the centuries-long maritime heritage of this island nation – as Cuba prepares for millions of American visitors by working to balance marine conservation and sustainable development. Our voyage will adapt the sailing experience of a 19th century schooner to help set the course to navigate the 21st century. This is your chance to be the change.
To come aboard, please explore the 2018 Cuba programs we’ve tailored for gap students, college students and life-long learners.
March to May 2018
September to December 2018
For high school and gap students, our 131-foot schooner will sail this fall from Maine to Cuba and return to Maine again next spring for semester-long programs. Learn sailing skills, from navigation to marine forecasting, in the most spectacular marine environment in the hemisphere.
December 2017 to March 2018
Students can join our three-week program to explore historic change occurring in Cuba. The course focuses on the challenges and opportunities of maritime tourism development, all from the unique perspective of a traditional sailing schooner.
July to August 2018
We offer a two-week program for Maine high school students that focuses on sustainable fisheries, exploring our region’s interdependent saltwater ecology and economy. Aboard the Gamage, students will learn teamwork while also engaging with coastal professionals on the Gulf Coast of Maine.