Corazon Cuba

Corazon Cuba

About

Corazon Cuba are based in the heart of Old Habana where we run programs combining learning Spanish, 'dance & discover' cultural excursions and meaningful volunteering to help you maximise your time in this amazing country. Cuba is a country like no other - gorgeous neo-classical buildings rubbing alongside primary coloured classic American cars, overlaid with exotic afro-Cuba music and some of the most exciting nightlife you will find anywhere.

Our programs are for 18+ but families are welcome too and there is no upper age limit to having fun in Cuba! We also offer tourism related activities across Cuba and we have programs based in Viñales and Trinidad. So... if you are interested in having a good time and learning more about Cuba please get in touch!

Website
corazoncuba.com
Founded
2015
Headquarters

311 Lamparilla
entre Aguacate y Compostela
Habana La Habana
Cuba

Reviews

Jenny DeWitt Go Overseas Headshot
Jenny
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I would highly recommend this Learn Spanish, Dance, & Culture program with Corazon Cuba (formerly Jakera Cuba)! I’m very grateful that I was able to attend this program for a week and experience all that Havana has to offer. It’s an amazing city with so much culture and the people were amazing. I found it very easy to get around (with only basic Spanish knowledge) and the staff were great at showing us around. The program was laid out perfectly - a great balance between learning and fun.

We had Spanish class in the mornings for 3 hours, lunch, and then either dance class or culture walks. I had Darbel as a Spanish teacher and he was great! The dance classes were a blast as well as the culture walks. On our culture walks we went to the Malecon, Central Havana, and Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes de La Habana. The day ended at 3pm and then we had the evenings to explore.

I met such great people on the program and we spent the evenings together walking around the city, eating great food, and going to salsa dance bars. It was such an easy environment to make friends and from all over the world! I can’t wait to travel more and meet back up with all the friends I made in Cuba.

The hostel was a great place to stay - I always felt very safe, the staff was accessible and helpful. I stayed in a shared room which had 6 bunk beds and it was very comfortable.

I do have a few tips for anyone going on this program or traveling to Cuba.
1. Download the app “maps.me” before you go. It gives you an offline map of Cuba for when you don’t have service or wifi (which is all the time).
2. On the Google Translate app you can download the Spanish language which is great for those times when you can’t remember something or need something translated.
3. If you are traveling from America BRING ALL THE CASH YOU’LL NEED. This is super important because American cards (no matter which bank - even Charles Schwab) don’t work in Cuba. The only way is to bring cash with you and exchange it for Cuban Pesos when you get there. They have 2 different currencies, CUC & CUP, but you will just use CUC the whole time.

This program was an incredible experience and I could not recommend it enough!! If you can, ABSOLUTELY go for 4 weeks. 1 week just wasn’t long enough, but better than nothing at all.

Thank you to Go Overseas for introducing me to this program and thank you Corazon (Jakera) for everything you do for your participants! You guys are amazing!

Programs

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Alumni Interviews

Alumni interviews are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Martina Bednjanec

Martina Bednjanec traveled to Cuba 5th to May 31st in 2014. She is from Zagreb, Croatia, a Geomatics engineer, and 26 years old. She has a Bachelor's degree from University of Zagreb and a Master's degree from Royal Institute of technology (KTH) in Stockholm in Geodesy and Geoinformatics. She studied and worked for five years in Stockholm, Sweden. She enjoys learning new languages and likes a Latin American style of life--relaxed with lots of music and dancing.
Plaza de la Revolucion with figures of Che Guevara and Fidel Castro

Why did you decide to enroll with Jakera in Cuba?

I wanted to make a longer trip to South America and some Spanish speaking country to improve my Spanish. I found Jakera's program in Venezuela (called Travelling Classroom) through google.

It encompassed Spanish lessons with adventure traveling, which was a perfect match for what I was searching for.

As the situation in Venezuela is a bit unstable now, I was happy to hear that they opened the same program in Cuba and I decided to try it out.

If you could go back and do something differently, what would it be?

Hmm...difficult question. I was really satisfied with everything, so maybe I would point out that I'm sorry that I didn't do the diving trip with our guide, Joel. I didn't do it because of bad weather and rain during the two weekends. It was not possible to do it during working days because of our schedules were full with Spanish lessons.

Tell me about one person you met.

I met Joel, who was our guide and my companion for the most of my trip. It's just amazing to hear how the people of my age live in different cultures and to experience their lifestyle for a short time.

He introduced us to almost his whole family. His uncle Vianko is a renowned artist and his girlfriend Gracy is a law student.

We also met his father and others; we went out with his friends who play in a band and they told us about their work and views on life matters.

As Cubans lack lots of stuff, it's an eye-opening experience to understand what really matters in life. It makes you not take things for granted and appreciate what we have in life.

What was the best moment of the entire trip?

There were lots of them! I think I'll never forget the night when we went to the Buena Vista Social Club concert in Hotel Nacional. I really didn't expect much, but the music and atmosphere turned out to be so great and the show was just amazing.

We also spent evenings in local restaurants listening to the bands and drinking mojitos. Another great moment was our trip to the mountains of Pinar del Rio, where we watched a telenovela in the evening with the locals.

The locals that I met for the first time offered us everything (even beds in their house because of the strong rain outside). I also drank freshly brewed coffee, which they grew and it was just a delight - the best coffee I ever drank.

I also liked poetry reading and art exhibitions on Sundays in Paseo del Prado, one of the main streets in Havana. I can also never forget the way we rode in Cuban public transportation. We rode in completely full buses in Havana and old massive trucks around the country.

Any tips for future participants in general and/or tips specifically for female students?

Bring sun lotion and insect repellent. Also try to bring some things as a donation, such as shampoos, soaps, tissues, child toys, pens, or crafts because they really lack these things. No special tips for female students because it's really safe. Also, try to learn some Spanish words before you come, as not many people speak English.

More Interviews

Staff Interviews

Staff interviews are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Leandro Talledo Hernandez

Job Title
Program Coordinator
Male headshot

Tell us about yourself, Leandro.

I began my working life at 16 years old as a school teacher for the Cuban government, and taught for 8 years in a primary school classroom. After these 8 years, I finished my own studies and initiated a new working life as a business Social Communicator for 5 additional years.

In 2014, I began to work together with my family, joining the travel agency Jakera that my brother had begun to run in Cuba in 2013. For these past three years, I have loved working for this program making travel dreams a reality for our clients.

What is your favorite travel memory?

My favorite travel memory is when I traveled with my family to Varadero and to Viñales here in Cuba. They are beautiful locations, but most of all I just love to travel with my wife and son and share those experiences with them.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

Since working with Jakera, I have learned so much. I have learned the English language, and to be able to interpret it well. I have also learned how to understand different people who come from very different backgrounds and cultures, and have learned how to help others in and through so many unique situations that we have had here.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

The best stories I know or have seen from our clients is when their actions show their love of this program; we have clients who return to Cuba a second or third time, and they still leave with the satisfaction of an incredible experience with us. This is what makes me happy.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I would choose our Learn Spanish, Culture, and Dance program, because I would have my day filled with good experiences, teaching me to better understand and appreciate the culture and dances of Cuba.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

It makes me especially proud to work for Jakera when I feel useful and purposeful in my role here, and when I can recognize the unity and the effort that our staff puts in to develop the activities of our clients and provide them with the absolute best experience overall.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

The single most important factor in creating a successful company is that each person is treated with value and care as an individual. Aside from this, I believe that the work that each of us does is done with an idea of reciprocity between the service we provide and the satisfaction of this service from our clients, assuring that our clients are pleased with and have thoroughly enjoyed the programs we offer.

Professional Associations

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