The good news is that the U.S. Treasury Department says recreational boats from the U.S. will continue to be permitted to visit Cuba as long as everyone on board has a legal reason to do so.
The bad news is that yesterday's announcement confirms that "individual people-to-people" travel will not be permitted. This had been the most frequently used "general license" to visit Cuba by U.S. citizens as a whole and by U.S. boaters. Here's what OFAC, the Treasury Department agency in charge of enforcing terms of the travel ban, says:
Persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction will still be able to engage in authorized travel to Cuba by cruise ship or passenger vessel. Following the issuance of OFAC’s regulatory changes, travel-related transactions with prohibited entities and subentities identified by the State Department generally will not be permitted. Guidance will accompany the issuance of the new regulations.
Now boaters wanting to visit Cuba will either have to have a different license such as journalism or professional research, or they will have to go under a people-to-people license as part of a tour group.
The complete regulations are expected to be issued in mid-September and will include lists of entitities operated under the Cuban military, with which U.S. citizens will be forbidden to do business. This includes several marinas, including the new state-of-the-art Marina Gaviota at Varadero, about 80 miles east of Havana. Marina Hemingway in Havana (shown above), which is operated by the Cuban Ministry of Tourism, is not expected to be on the list.
Meanwhile, here's an explanation from our friend Paul Madden, who also facilitiates excursions to Cuba.