Discovery of Central America
13 days with Ponant Rating:
Day 1 – PUERTO VALLARTA
Embarkation from 16H00 to 17H00. Departure at 18H00.
Days 2-3 – AT SEA
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 observer marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.
Day 4 – HUATULCO (SANTA MARÍA HUATULCO)
A seaside resort on the Mexican Pacific coast in the southern State of Oaxaca, the Huatulco region is made up of nine turquoise bays. You?ll be spoilt for choice with no less than 36 beaches, four of which are ecological preserves. In addition to the beautiful bays and beaches, you can explore and shop in the small communities of the Huatulco area, such as La Crucecita, Santa Cruz or old Santa Maria Huatulco (the district's municipality).
Day 5 – AT SEA
Day 6 – PUERTO QUETZAL
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.
Day 7 – AT SEA
Day 8 – SAN JUAN DEL SUR
Considered Nicaragua's surfing capital, the attractive seaside resort of San Juan del Sur is an idyllic location for chilling in the waves. You're guaranteed to fall in love with this former fishing town on the shores of the Pacific Ocean, now a popular seaside holiday spot. Less than a two-hour drive away is the city of Granada, founded in 1524 at the foot of the Mombacho volcano. Clinging to the shores of Lake Nicaragua, the town is a stunning example of colonial architecture, with its narrow streets and Al-Andalus houses painted in bright colours. Don't miss out on a tour of its La Merced church, wander around the main square and explore the San Francisco convent.
Day 9 – HERRADURA
Herradura takes its name in Spanish from the horseshoe form of its bay, covered in lush tropical vegetation, its beauty enhanced by the hills that loom over it. This small town is surrounded by national parks that are remarkable for the rich variety of fauna and flora they protect. When your ship calls here, it will be the moment to take a journey in small covered boats along the Tarcoles River, whose banks are home to crocodiles and iguanas. This mangrove also hosts the loyal and flamboyant Scarlet Macaw, with its red, blue and yellow plumage, known for mating with the same partner for life.
Day 10 – QUEPOS
Quepos makes for a charming stop-off on the Pacific coast, just next-door to the famous Manuel Antonio National Park, an untouched tropical natural reserve lined with white sandy beaches. The town's seafront is an opportunity to stroll through market stalls touting pineapples and bananas in the shade of the manchineel trees. In this coastal town criss-crossed with tree-lined streets in bloom, admire the houses and their incredible sculpted balconies. Enjoy a spot of shopping in the many traditional boutiques: pick up some handmade cotton clothing, ceramics embellished with Costa Rican designs and home décor pieces in hand-painted wood.
Day 11 – GOLFITO
The town of Golfito lies on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, in the province of Puntarenas, one of the most humid regions in the world. It was occupied by the indigenous Bruncas tribe during the Pre-Columbian era. Once specialised in the export of bananas, Golfito has today become the starting point for walkers who want to reach the Corcovado National Park, one of the largest primary tropical rainforests in Central America. Meanwhile, the beaches of Golfo Dulce are some of the most beautiful in Costa Rica, with the Piedras Blancas National Park as their backdrop, along with the Vida Silvestre refuge, home to many tropical birds and monkeys as well as a variety of rare species of plants.
Day 12 – CÉBACO ISLAND
Day 13 – FUERTE AMADOR, FLAMENCO 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, you’ll have an exceptional opportunity to journey back in time as you discover the Embera tribe, loyal guardians of the forest and of the Chagres River. This proud people have successfully preserved their traditions and their ancestral way of life, which pre-date the colonisation of the region by the Spanish. In these villages nestling amid dense vegetation, visitors are greeted with traditional dancing.
All This Included
PONANT invites you to discover a condensed overview of Central America’s architectural gems and most stunning natural treasures through an exceptional itinerary.
In Puerto Vallarta, you will board the L’Austral for a 13-day cruise to 5 countries!
Your ship will chart a course towards Huatulco in Mexico and its preserved bays edged with magnificent beaches.
From Puerto Quetzal, you will be able to visit Antigua Guatemala. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this city, overlooked by majestic volcanoes, is often considered to be the country’s most beautiful.
When your ship calls at San Juan del Sur in Nicaragua, you will travel to Granada, at the foot of the Mombacho volcano. This town is teeming with architectural treasures, and combines Moorish, Andalusian, Baroque and neo-Classical styles.
L’Austral will stop in Quepos, the gateway to one of Costa Rica’s finest natural treasures, the Manuel Antonio National Park. Combining forest and abundant wildlife, this unspoiled park is fringed with idyllic beaches.
Cruising: Standard cabin onboard L'Austral
Terms and Conditions
For Ponant terms and conditions, please click here.
* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.