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Ponant: Natural Parks & Wildlife of Central America

14 Days FROM USD 6,150

Overview

EARLY BIRDS ON SALE - Book and save up to 30% OFF* Latin America voyages with PONANT.

EARLY BIRDS ON SALE - Book and save up to 30% OFF* Latin America voyages with PONANT.

EARLY BIRDS ON SALE - Book and save up to 30% OFF* Latin America voyages with PONANT.

Undertake an incredible 14 day voyage of South America in which you will see no less than 5 incredible countries. On board the Le Soleal, you will find the highest degree of luxury and elegance as you sail to incredible islands, beautiful bays, pure white sandy beaches and have incredible encounters with local populations. Setting sail from the quaint Puerto Quetzal you will experience the lush rainforests of Costa Rica, the stunning Pearl Islands of Panama, the indescribably beautiful coastline of Colombia and the historical port of Guayaquil in Ecuador. This is a truly remarkable journey which combines the most visually stunning sights of Central America with unbelievable wildlife and cultural opportunities.

This voyage will be done in collaboration with Ponant and the National Geographic. On this exclusive voyage a National Geographic expert and photographer will join you to share their knowledge and insights. 

Optional Activities : Kayaking

Trip Code: LAPONW

Travel Style: Small Ship Cruise

Location: Guatamela, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador

Ship: LE SOLEAL

Flights: We offer a range of flight options to meet your cruise. Contact us today to discuss.

WHY CHOOSE THIS CRUISE?

  • You will undertake this voyage on board Le Soleal, a state-of-the-art, luxury mega-yacht which combines elegance as well as sustainable technologies and a smaller passenger capacity to provide a more intimate and surreal cruising experience.

  • You will visit the Curu Wildlife Refuge & Manuel Antonio National Park of Costa Rica, where in the lush tropical jungle you will have the opportunity to see monkeys, iguana and multicolored birds.

  • In the Darien National Park you will have the opportunity to meet the indigenous people of the Emberas tribe who have preserved their traditions and ancestral way of life.

  • This voyage will be undertaken in collaboration with the National Geographic, with an on board photographer and expert who will share their experiences and knowledge.

  • This itinerary is perfect for combining with land based tours of South or Central America so that you may experience a multitude of incredibly diverse and ethereal landscapes and cultural experiences.

CRUISE ITINERARY

Embarkation is scheduled between 4 and 5PM with departure scheduled for 6PM.

Located on the Pacific coast, 100 kilometres south of the capital, the city of Puerto Quetzal is the largest port in the country. Close to the city, the ravishing little old city of Antigua, is a former colonial capital listed as World Heritage by UNESCO. You’ll admire the wealth of its historical monuments.

Puerto Quetzal

During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

At Sea

On the southern part of the Nicoya Peninsula, the small Curù Wildlife Refuge is the oldest protected park in Costa Rica. This refuge is an exemplary site in terms of ecotourism as well as a research centre for scientists from all over the world. It has been at the heart of an original conservation and sustainable development project since the 1930s. After a short Zodiac® trip, you will discover, via the paths that criss-cross the tropical forest and lead to magnificent beaches, the most emblematic species of Costa Rica: monkeys, iguanas and over 200 bird species. Since their recent reintroduction, the scarlet macaw and the spider monkey have thrived in this preserved environment.

Curu Wildlife Refuge & Tortuga Island

You will land in a Zodiac on the beaches of the Manuel Antonio National Park, one of the jewels of Costa Rica. Protected since the 1970s, this small park, only 16 km² and bordered by the idyllic beaches of the Pacific Ocean, is home to rich biodiversity. Along peaceful paths or during a break on the beach, you will be welcomed by a tropical forest full of life: from the discreet sloth to the noisy howler monkey and the mischievous white-faced capuchin. On the fine sandy beaches rising to lush hills and coconut trees, you will be amused by the dance of the racoons that race down from the trees to tease visitors.

Manuel Antonio National Park

During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

At Sea

Situated 550 kilometres off the coast of Costa Rica, Cocos Island boasts an incredible ecosystem consisting of a lush tropical forest, more than 200 waterfalls, and turquoise-blue waters that are home to turtles, manta rays, whale sharks and other marine life. Cocos Island is also known as “Treasure Island”. The nickname comes not from the richness of the island’s flora and fauna, but from the fact that, between the 17th and 19th centuries, it was a favourite place for pirates to hide their booty. Today, it is a destination for distinguished researchers and highly skilled divers. The only way to reach this veritable Garden of Eden is by cruise ship.

Cocos Island

During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

At Sea

Off the Pacific coast of Panama, at the entrance to the Gulf of Montijo, Cebaco Island conjures visions of paradise lost. Covered in tropical rainforest, edged by white sandy beaches, home to exceptionally rich plant and wildlife, the island offers a number of hiking routes along which to discover its pristine natural environment. Its magnificent coral reefs, located in the outlying regions of the Coiba National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site, are the refuge for many marine species and offer stunning underwater landscapes.

Cebaco Island

An artificial peninsula situated at the Pacific entrance to the Panama Canal, Fuerte Amador is the gateway to several noteworthy sites. Right near there, the impressive Miraflores Locks are a shining example of the engineering feats deployed during the construction of the Panama Canal. Further north, in villages nestling amid dense vegetation, lives the Embera tribe, guardian of the forest and of the Chagres River. This proud people have successfully preserved their traditions and their ancestral way of life, which predate the colonisation of the region by the Spanish.

The most remote and least developed region of Panama, the province of Darien is an unspoilt land with an extremely rich variety of flora and fauna. Listed by UNESCO as World Heritage, Darien National Park offers its extraordinary scenery of rocky coastlines, mountain ranges, mangroves, rivers and creeks. Discover Playa Muerto, a tiny coastal village home to the Emberas Amerindian community. You will visit the village, attend traditional songs and dances of the locals, and admire beautiful local craft.

Pachea Island & Flameco Island

This quaint village has little road access is surrounded by incredibly beautiful coastline. Marine turtles nest seasonally near the turquoise waters.

Jaque

The Utria National Park is a unique slice of Colombia's biodiversity. A unique place to spot whales, bath in natural hot springs and take walks on sandy beaches. The lush mountainous rainforest receives some of the highest rainfall in the world with nearly 10 000 millimetres annually.

Utria National Natural Park

This day at sea is spent at your own leisure. You may take this time to enjoy the various amenities on board or simply relax and enjoy the company of your fellow passengers.

At sea - Days 12 & 13

Disembarkation is scheduled is scheduled for 7AM.

Nicknamed the “Pearl of the Pacific”, Guayaquil is the most inhabited city in Ecuador. Founded by the conquistadors in 1535, it borders the coasts of the province of Guayas. You can stroll without any cares in the world, in the upper part of the city, next to the Las Peñas district. This Bohemian district with its colourful houses offers an impressive view of the city, if you’re courageous enough to climb the steps which separate the chapel rooms from Cerro Santa Ana lighthouse. The city is also blessed with many parks and gardens, perfect for taking a breather.

Disembarkation in Guayaquil
DOWNLOAD ITINERARY PDF

ITINERARY ADD-ONS

  • Amend your itinerary to include the incredible wonders of Peru. This amazing 9-day itinerary will allow you to see the best of Peru. Visit incredible cities such as Lima and Cusco which are buzzing and vibrant with a unique blend of urban modernisation and rural lifestyles. You will also be able to visit and experience the incredible mystery of the awe-inspiring Machu Picchu and explore the legendary Sacred Valley. Find out more.

  • Why not add on a tour to the Galapagos at the end of your Central American journey, spending 4 days exploring the beautiful archipelago that abounds with fascinating wildlife? Amidst spectacular volcanic scenery you will see a myriad of birds and animals from lava lizards to blue-footed boobies, Galapagos penguins, frigatebirds and giant tortoises. Find out more

  • Upgrade your journey to experience the wonders of the Amazon. Stay in a luxurious eco lodge tightly nestled in the Ecuadorian corner of the Amazon rainforest. Explore by canoe or on foot, search for colourful wildlife including toucans, parrots, monkeys or elusive giant otters. Experience the most diverse set of species on the planet. Find out more.

Pricing & date

Ponant: Natural Parks & Wildlife of Central America from USD 6,150
Departing Ending Duration
26 Sep 2020 09 Oct 2020 14

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES

Kayaking

Kayaking

Important Information

  • Cabin accommodation on board Le Soleal
    All meals whilst on board
    All drinks (excluding premium brands)
    All scheduled landings/excursions
    Guiding and lectures by English speaking expedition leader and team 
    All port fees
    All landing fees
    Expedition jacket provided (yours to keep) 
    A pair of expedition boots for use during your voyage

    Exclusions

    Airfare to embarkation/disembarkation city 
    Visa fees (if applicable) 
    Travel insurance
    Personal expenses
    Gratuities for the crew
    Pre or post cruise travel expenses
    Optional activities, refer to optional activities section for details

  • 2 (light adventure)
  • Available upon request, contact us for more details.

  • Departure date, season & availability. 

SPEAK TO A SPECIALIST

Sustainability

Being environmentally accountable is a crucial part of our organisation. Chimu is currently striving towards using less paper, taking several initiatives to do so and tracking our progress along the way. Our goal: A paperless organisation. For this reason, all information given to you will be sent electronically. We encourage those who choose to travel with us to support our aspirations and actions and ask that you reconsider printing out documentation. To view these documents, you can download them to your iPad or portable computer before and during your trip.

Chimu is passionate and dedicated to sustainability measures and understands the crucial part sustainability plays within the tourism industry.

We use local guides and office staff to both maximise local employment opportunities and minimise carbon footprint. Local guides also ensure you benefit from the intimate knowledge, passion and culture of the country you’re visiting. Our guides are all highly qualified (most with university degrees) or equip with many years of experience and are paid above the standard wage. Whether it be our knowledgeable local guides, locally produced meals or the transport on tour, we do not use imported goods when local products are available. We aim to minimise our impact on the environment and give as much back as possible to the communities we work in.

While visiting the many national parks, heritage sites, museums and landmarks our travellers are encouraged to explore whilst remaining culturally aware and sensitive. We further encourage you to buy appropriate souvenirs and discourage the buying of anything wrongfully made or taken from the environment i.e. shells and endangered species products. Information on how you can be environmentally conscious, and travel responsibly will be made available in our Travellers Guides and provided during your travels by guides and staff.

For more information on our sustainability policies, including how we are striving towards being a paperless organisation, click HERE

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