Finance Trump is making it more difficult for Americans to travel to Cuba — these gorgeous photos show what they'll be missing

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On Thursday, new restrictions for Americans traveling to Cuba will be enacted by the Trump administration.

Cubans are known for their love of vintage cars. play

Cubans are known for their love of vintage cars.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)

  • Former President Barack Obama began lifting travel and trade restrictions with Cuba in 2014.
  • In 2016, the island had a record-breaking 4 million visitors.
  • This week, the Trump administration's new travel and trade restrictions will be enacted.

On Thursday, new restrictions for Americans traveling to Cuba will be enacted by the Trump administration. According to the new policies, those traveling for educational purposes or "people-to-people" travel must be accompanied by a representative from an authorized organization.

In 2016, former President Barack Obama had lifted restrictions on tourists, and the island was reaping the benefits.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin made a statement on the new restrictions: "We have strengthened our Cuba policies to channel economic activity away from the Cuban military and to encourage the government to move toward greater political and economic freedom for the Cuban people."

The Trump administration has published a list of hotels, marinas, stores, and rum factories that have ties to the Cuban military and are therefore off-limits.

This September, Cuba was hit by Hurricane Irma, the strongest storm to land on the island in over 80 years. The Category 5 storm killed 10 people and destroyed hundreds of homes.

Here's a look at what daily life was like on the once-restricted island pre-Irma. Cuba which will enter its tourist high season in December.

From Havana's National Museum of Fine Arts to the smaller art markets in the streets, tourists can find beautiful and colorful art all across the city.

From Havana's National Museum of Fine Arts to the smaller art markets in the streets, tourists can find beautiful and colorful art all across the city. play

From Havana's National Museum of Fine Arts to the smaller art markets in the streets, tourists can find beautiful and colorful art all across the city.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


Soccer games are played everywhere, even in the street.

Soccer games are played everywhere, even in the street. play

Soccer games are played everywhere, even in the street.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


Cubans are known for their love of vintage cars.

Cubans are known for their love of vintage cars. play

Cubans are known for their love of vintage cars.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


Even taxi drivers cruise around in these elaborate vehicles.

Even taxi drivers cruise around in these elaborate vehicles. play

Even taxi drivers cruise around in these elaborate vehicles.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


On average, June is Havana's most rainy month.

On average, June is Havana's most rainy month. play

On average, June is Havana's most rainy month.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


Inside the H. Upmann cigar factory in Havana, Yiliana Benitez rolls a famous Cuban cigar. In Cuba, cigar rolling is considered an art form that's passed down through generations.

Inside the H. Upmann cigar factory in Havana, Yiliana Benitez rolls a famous Cuban cigar. In Cuba, cigar rolling is considered an art form that's passed down through generations. play

Inside the H. Upmann cigar factory in Havana, Yiliana Benitez rolls a famous Cuban cigar. In Cuba, cigar rolling is considered an art form that's passed down through generations.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


In March, all of the cowboys of Cuba flock to Havana for the International Livestock Fair.

In March, all of the cowboys of Cuba flock to Havana for the International Livestock Fair. play

In March, all of the cowboys of Cuba flock to Havana for the International Livestock Fair.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


In 2015, the 12th Havana Biennial took place, drawing artists and curators from all over the world. Here, they take a tour of the city's streets.

In 2015, the 12th Havana Biennial took place, drawing artists and curators from all over the world. Here, they take a tour of the city's streets. play

In 2015, the 12th Havana Biennial took place, drawing artists and curators from all over the world. Here, they take a tour of the city's streets.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


Cuba's El Capitolio was built between 1926 and 1929. It still stands today.

Cuba's El Capitolio was built between 1926 and 1929. It still stands today. play

Cuba's El Capitolio was built between 1926 and 1929. It still stands today.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


La Estatua de la República is found inside the Capitol building.

La Estatua de la República is found inside the Capitol building. play

La Estatua de la República is found inside the Capitol building.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


Cuba has a rich history of dance, including styles like danzón, mambo, and salsa.

Cuba has a rich history of dance, including styles like danzón, mambo, and salsa. play

Cuba has a rich history of dance, including styles like danzón, mambo, and salsa.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


Salsa dance instructor Ariel Domninguez gives a lesson of Cuban-style salsa to a student.

Salsa dance instructor Ariel Domninguez gives a lesson of Cuban-style salsa to a student. play

Salsa dance instructor Ariel Domninguez gives a lesson of Cuban-style salsa to a student.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


More salsa classes take place on the beach in Varadero.

More salsa classes take place on the beach in Varadero. play

More salsa classes take place on the beach in Varadero.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


The beaches of Varadero have beautifully clear waters.

The beaches of Varadero have beautifully clear waters. play

The beaches of Varadero have beautifully clear waters.



On average, the water is a comfortable 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

On average, the water is a comfortable 75 degrees Fahrenheit. play

On average, the water is a comfortable 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


If you don't want to swim, rent a sailboat to explore the waters.

If you don't want to swim, rent a sailboat to explore the waters. play

If you don't want to swim, rent a sailboat to explore the waters.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


Cuba is known for its high-performing education system, and its schools are considered the best in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Cuba is known for its high-performing education system, and its schools are considered the best in Latin America and the Caribbean. play

Cuba is known for its high-performing education system, and its schools are considered the best in Latin America and the Caribbean.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)

Source: The World Bank



Cuban soldiers lead a ceremony in remembrance of student leaders killed during the fight against Spanish colonial rule.

Cuban soldiers lead a ceremony in remembrance of student leaders killed during the fight against Spanish colonial rule. play

Cuban soldiers lead a ceremony in remembrance of student leaders killed during the fight against Spanish colonial rule.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


When it comes to shipping to the US from Cuba, strict guidelines are still in place. Plan ahead.

When it comes to shipping to the US from Cuba, strict guidelines are still in place. Plan ahead. play

When it comes to shipping to the US from Cuba, strict guidelines are still in place. Plan ahead.

(Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters)


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