What fellow birders say about CCT:
Gary and David – Thank you for organizing and leading such an incredible trip. As I reflect on the two weeks, every aspect of this tour was outstanding:
– Locations and choice of available lodging – the overall lodging quality was very good, and the quality / service at the house in Habana was far above my expectations for this trip.
– Birding opportunities and the quality of our guides – Geraldo and Dayana kept us informed, relaxed and quickly became our new friends…
– Restaurants and service – the quality of the food was a pleasant surprise, and most of our group will need to cut back on drinks and desserts now that we’re back home!
– Transportation – our group was quite comfortable on “the short bus” and Manuel was a true professional behind the wheel.
– Our group – easy-going, fun and no complainers – we had great times together and were capable of going our own ways.
– A truly amazing Cuban experience, enhanced by great weather, engaging hosts, entertaining Jazz Fest (extension) with accessible musicians –
Overall – an outstanding trip. Thanks again – I really enjoyed our time together!
New Jersey Audubon, January 2018
Once again, thank you for your efforts to arrange a wonderful and memorable trip to Cuba for our OOS bird survey group in late February. CCT’s expertise and experience in choosing birding destinations and dining / hotel locations made for a pleasurable experience in a challenging environment. Great job!!
I will fill out the evaluation form after taking some time to process the amazing experiences on this trip. Although it was good to be home and to sleep last night again in my own bed, it was emotional to leave Cuba behind as we took off and watched the land go out of sight – and it was especially sad to say good-bye to the wonderful staff you have put together. We had some wonderful learning experiences, all of us. Thank you for everything! I feel privileged to have visited Cuba.
Take good care,
We loved the Cuba experience, especially meeting your tremendous staff and guides. They were wonderful and are excellent ambassadors for Cuba!
private group, April 2016
Not for a second should I have doubted you about passing up the electronic passport verification in Miami … we breezed through immigration/customs without that document (just as you predicted), and so did Margi & Don, who were just ahead of us.
When we found our luggage we couldn’t find you, and we had to dash to make our tight plane connection. The plane ultimately turned out to be delayed anyway, so we could have had time to thank you and say goodbye.
So I do that now, hoping you know how deeply we appreciate all your guidance, hard work, and good will. And I’m sure we didn’t see the half of it. You’re the best! Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the experience of a lifetime.
“Dear Gary, I don’t think I properly thanked you for your extraordinary help in making my trip to Cuba such a unique experience. Your careful attention to our experiences in Havana were above and beyond my expectations and I deeply appreciate our delicious lunch at the Nacional, our amazing dinner at Cafe Laurent, and your special arrangement for our evening with the Buena Vista Social Club.
I can’t say enough good about our ten days together and will encourage anyone who will listen to make Cuba a must-visit whether with you or another group. Your selection of guides, with an introduction (and in our case recap) from Orlando Garrido, was truly inspired. What great good fortune they are part of your team.
Thank you again for your attention to detail and your care and concern for our welfare. I’m glad we had time with you in Havana. It was a pleasure getting to know you. Thank you again.”
special thanks to Gary for your actions 19 years ago to make this kind trip possible for so many people. All the best until we meet again…
Washington, DC February 2015
My wife Ann Nora and I really enjoyed our Cuban trip – due mostly to your efforts – Thanks!
We loved the Cuba experience, especially meeting your very professional guides. They were wonderful and are excellent ambassadors for Cuba!
“… I came home with 44 lifers and an intense appreciation for what life is like in Cuba for both natives and visitors alike. Each place we stayed had its own distinct ambiance and each lived up to its billing. You and CCT have the entire experience wired from beginning to end. Your staff were a pleasure to work with and each of the local guides excelled in their knowledge of both English and more importantly the birds.
You certainly have given me a treasure trove of memories that will last a long time. The trip could not have been better. Many, many thanks!”
“Thanks for your interest in participants’ experience. As you observed, the program went smoothly and was totally successful. I attribute that to good planning and good leaders. I know how easy it is in countries like Cuba for things to go wrong, sometimes unavoidably, but I also know that the better the plans and the better the leaders, less goes awry… Luis Díaz is top drawer. Luis’s expansive naturalist knowledge enriched our tour greatly, to say nothing of his winning personality. Thanks for a super trip, Gary!”
“We knew the Caribbean Conservation Trust trip to Cuba in November 2014 offered great promise. It did and far exceeded our expectations. For birders wanting to see the Cuban endemics, particularly the endearing Bee Hummingbird; visit a number of pristine biosphere reserves; and learn of the culture of the largest island in the West Indies, this trip is not to be missed.
Gary Markowski, founder and director of the CCT, is the expert on birding trips to Cuba and goes out of his way to provide the most helpful information to prepare his travelers. Gary is also a sharp birder and thus finds the top guides to accompany his group. We were in good hands, there were plenty of scopes to go around and the photographers in the group had time to take pictures. We were gratified to see our prime target bird, the Bee Hummingbird, the world’s smallest bird, plus all our other targeted endemics. Cuba is special and we recommend joining a Caribbean Conservation Trust trip.”
Tom and Margot Southerland
Founders and former Directors (retired) of Princeton Nature Tours, Princeton, NJ, November 201
We appreciated all the effort that Michael put into making sure everyone got to see the various birds, to conduct a survey throughout the tour, and to report back to us what the findings were on a regular basis. He even managed to upload to eBird where internet access was available. He clearly did not have any down-time, but he managed all those duties well and still made time to check in and make sure everyone had what they needed (including a wheelchair for one of the group in Havana). That is a lot to juggle, but he managed it all while maintaining the quality of the trip. He worked well with the Cuban staff as well. His enthusiasm for other creatures was great given our interests include species beyond birds.
The organization and preparation for this trip was very efficient, we were prepared to the detail, knew what would happen -and it did- and everything worked smoothly and the support staff, driver, guides were perfect choices, worked very hard to make us comfortable and our experience as pleasurable as possible. Hotel and restaurant choices were good to excellent with many wonderful places to sleep, eat and drink and enjoy sometimes superb dishes – and your special add-ons, the roaring drive to the hotel in vintage limousines, the welcome bottles of wine – nice touch.
I had a wonderful, enjoyable learning experience, thank you all,
“Gary, The trip was truly MEMORABLE!! Thank-you for providing this once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Thanks again for your careful planning. I can only imagine the complexity of setting up a trip like this. Your efforts are GREATLY appreciated…
Thank you again for all the preparation you provided, which made the whole process easy and comfortable. All the preparation made for a memorable trip. We have told several of our friends about your services in setting up the trip, and would not hesitate to recommend Caribbean Conservation Trust for travel to Cuba.”
Contact Us @
Caribbean Conservation Trust
353 West Todd Street
Hamden, CT 06518