Date: September 29 - October 17, 2016
Cruise Destination: Miami to Lima
From the Mayan ruins that dot the shores of the Western Caribbean to the Lost City of the Incas nestled high above Lima in the Andes Mountains, explore the ancient civilizations that shaped the history of the Americas and provided the foundations of today’s modern cities. The site of the first Catholic service in Mexico, El Cedral is the oldest settlement on Cozumel, while a century-old family farm tells the story of agriculture in Costa Rica. A modern marvel, the Panama Canal allows you to bridge the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the Americas, and Fuerte Amador offers the opportunity to delve deeper into the canal’s history. From the Spanish charm of Montecristi near Manta to the 400-year-old neighborhoods of Las Peñas and Cerro Santa Ana in Guayaquil, this continental exploration takes you to the heart of this region’s story.
Day 1: Miami, United States
People-watchers will enjoy South Beach's Ocean Drive, while architecture buffs will love the Art Deco District. If the beaches don't intrigue you, there are world-class museums and shopping venues too. In Miami, there really is something for everyone.
Day 2: Key West, United States
Visit the Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory, which houses an impressive collection of flowering plants, cascading waterfalls and 50 different species of butterflies from around the world. Continue to the aquarium, Key West's oldest attraction, dating back to 1935 and home to hundreds of different species of local sea life. Don't miss the historic home of author Ernest Hemingway.
Day 3: Cruising the Straits of Florida
Day 4: Cozumel, Mexico
Enjoy a day snorkeling, diving to fabulous reefs, exploring the jungle with an ATV, relaxing beside the pool at a beach club, strolling a vast beach and visiting an ancient Mayan temple.
Day 5: Costa Maya, Mexico
The cruise port of Costa Maya in Mexico's developing Costa Maya region is surrounded by dense jungle and turquoise waters and blessed with radiant sunshine. No wonder the ancient Maya lived nearby, building ceremonial centers like Chacchoben, where you can climb among the ruins, many of which are still being excavated. Look for raucous toucans in the trees.
Day 6: Belize City, Belize (Anchor Port)
Visit the beautifully restored temples and plazas of Cahal Pech, a major Mayan site on a hilltop, or explore Belize City and its museum filled with Mayan artifacts. Journey along the Olde Belize River en route to Altun Ha and watch for howler monkeys, alligators and iguanas. Or head for the stunning Barrier Reef to dive or snorkel in crystalline waters.
Day 7: Santo Tomas, Guatemala
Visit fascinating Quiriguá and its stunning Mayan stele. Take a boat ride along the Rio Dulce to Lake Izabal past riverside Mayan villages, lush tropical vegetation and Fort San Felipe. Or take a short flight to Flores for an unforgettable visit to incredible, mysterious Tikal, its soaring ancient temples rising from the jungle floor.
Day 8: Roatan, Honduras
Luxuriate on the magnificent beaches, snorkel or dive and explore the superb shallow reefs, or discover the island's other natural wonders on a horseback ride on the beach and through a tropical forest past spectacular volcanic rocks.
Day 9: Cruising the Caribbean Sea
Day 10: Puerto Limon, Costa Rica
Ride the aerial tram through the rainforest canopy at Braulio Carillo National Park. Take a boat ride through the Tortuguero Canals or the Estero Negro estuary, the rich jungle tapestry all around, while watching for colorful birds, monkeys, iguanas, sloths, crocodiles and the legendary, iridescent Blue Morpho butterfly.
Day 11: Panama Canal Daylight Transit - Fuerte Amador (Balboa), Panama (Anchor Port)
Day 12: Fuerte Amador (Balboa), Panama (Anchor Port)
One of the entrances to the Panama Canal on the Pacific side, the port of Fuerte Amador, founded in 1519, is a short drive from Panama City. Explore the beautiful French and Spanish colonial homes in Panama City's Casco Viejo, marvel at Panama's lush rainforest or visit a secluded Indian village.
Day 13: Cruising the Pacific Ocean
Day 14: Mantra, Ecuador
As a gateway to Ecuador, the small port city of Manta is a short drive from Montecristi, where the world's best Panama hats are produced and also where they originated. Catch a flight to the capital city of Quito, a wonderfully preserved colonial-era city perched 9,200 feet above sea level. Beautiful lakes, volcanoes and high mountains around the town of Otavalo are spectacular.
Day 15: Guayaquil, Ecuador
The largest city and main port of Ecuador, Guayaquil has become a popular tourist destination. Enjoy a long walk along the riverfront, where shopping and sightseeing go hand in hand thanks to the numerous malls, parks and historical monuments. Take a flight to the Galapagos Islands or an excursion to the Cerro Blanco Forest Reserve to experience the beautiful flora and rare wildlife of Ecuador.
Day 16: Cruising the Pacific Ocean
Day 17: Salaverry, Peru
Founded by the Spanish conquistador Pizarro, Salaverry has numerous archaeological excavations and is a jumping-off spot for a visit to Machu Picchu. The "Lost City of the Incas" is one of South America's most intriguing archaeological sites. Machu Picchu is perched 7,875 feet above sea level and has a 1,800-foot vertical drop face. What remains are extraordinary stone buildings built by the Incas for use as temples, sanctuaries and homes. This UNESCO World Heritage Site was originally built in 1460.
Day 18-19: Lima/Machu Picchu (Calloa), Peru
Explore Lima’s wonderful museums and visit the famed Cathedral of Lima and the Archbishop’s Palace on the city’s majestic main square. Take a flight to Machu Picchu, known as the “Lost City of the Incas” and South America’s most intriguing archaeological site. Built in the 15th century by the Incas and perched 7,875 feet above sea level, this extraordinary UNESCO World Heritage Site features stone buildings once used as temples, sanctuaries, homes and water fountains. Also enchanting is the colonial city of Cuzco with its majestic Plaza de Armas and the ancient Incan fortress of Sacsayhuaman.