Costa Rica to Panama Voyage
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Vacation Style Holiday Type
Activity Level Leisurely / Moderate
Delight in Panama and Costa Rica’s natural treasures by exploring remote, protected parks and landscapes of the rich Pacific Coast in search of spectacular biodiversity and vibrant birdlife. From Panama’s remote Darien Province, which is practically inaccessible other than by air or ship, to the stunning Pearl Islands, we discover incredible destinations that are outstanding for nature and wildlife. Your group explores in comfort both by land and by small ship aboard a gracious yacht.Small countries with two long coastlines and a number of outlying archipelagos, Panama & Costa Rica arguably have some of the best beaches in Central America.Spend time at one of the remote beaches. For example, on the northwest Caribbean coast of Panama, an archipelago of nine islands collectively known as Bocas del Toro lays claim to some of the country’s most alluring beaches. On the far side of big Bastimentos Island (which is dominated by a national marine park), Red Frog Beach is only accessible by forest path or boat. Although it doesn’t feel quite as remote as it used to, the area is still touched by turquoise waters and simply stunning views.
* Guided tours & lectures by native naturalists
* Services of experienced expedition leaders
* All meals on voyage
* Wildlife excursions on land & by skiff
* Full educational program with lectures & field interpretation
* Local beer and wine with meals onboard
* Tips to porters & waiters for included meals
* Pre- and post-cruise accommodations as outlined in the itinerary
* Arrival & departure transfers
Fly independently to San José
Fly independently to San José, where we meet our guide and transfer to our hotel.*Accommodation: *Holiday Inn San Jose Escazu****
Relaxing morning in San José
After a relaxing morning in San José, embark your ship and cruise toward Quepos.*Accommodation: *The Panorama**
Our Costa Rica cruise starts with an incredible morning in Manuel Antonio
Our Costa Rica cruise starts with an incredible morning in Manuel Antonio Reserve. This fragile rainforest ecosystem boasts an array of wildlife. Watch for the park’s easy-to-spot monkeys, including red-backed squirrel, white-faced capuchin, spider and mantled howler monkeys. Hike with local naturalists along rainforest trails. Cool off while swimming from the reserve’s white-sand beaches before returning to the ship. After lunch, explore the forest canopy. Rejoin your ship in Playa Biesanz. Enjoy dinner onboard while cruising toward the Osa Peninsula.*Accommodation: *The Panorama
Enjoy a morning exploring the Osa Peninsula, named one of the “most
biologically intense places on Earth” by National Geographic.
Enjoy a morning exploring the Osa Peninsula, named one of the “most biologically intense places on Earth” by National Geographic. Hike through secondary forest, spotting endemic plant species along with scarlet macaws, toucans, parrots, coatis, agoutis, collared peccaries, tyras and even tapirs along the way. Cruise across Golfo Dulce towards Casa Orquideas, an exquisite flower sanctuary. The beautifully landscaped private tropical garden showcases hundreds of species of ornamental and edible tropical plants. Meander through the gardens seeing beautiful and interesting plants and flowers, which are a magnet for dozens of different kinds of birds, butterflies, insects and other wildlife. Cap-off our day with time to swim from the nearby beach before cruising to Panama.*Accommodation: *The Panorama
Swim and snorkel off the waters of tiny Restingue Island
Spend a morning in paradise as you swim and snorkel off the waters of tiny Restingue Island, nestled between nationally protected marine areas! Tuna and wahoo are common, while Humpback and sperm whales migrate through the area and four species of turtles, giant manta rays and dolphins can be spotted just offshore. Indulge in a beach barbecue at nearby Cebaco Island with time to relax and enjoy the white sands and sapphire waters. Early this afternoon, cruise toward the Darien.*Accommodation: *The Panorama
Head into the mangroves and estuaries of Panama’s remote Darien
Board local boats heading into the mangroves and estuaries of Panama’s remote Darien. In the mangroves, watch for roseate spoonbill, Amazon kingfisher, white ibis and heron. Journey up river through red, black and button mangroves to an Emberá community on the Mogue River. The unique Emberá people still live much as they did when the Spanish first arrived in the 1500s. During our visit we’ll be immersed in this rich culture through dance and music. Enjoy demonstrations of traditional wood carving and learn about how they use medicinal plants. Emberá women are known as some of the world’s finest basket makers, and we observe as they create beautiful baskets from local palm leaves and natural dyes.*Accommodation: *The Panorama
Swim and snorkel in the wildlife rich waters off of the Pearl Islands.
Spend a morning swimming and snorkeling in the wildlife rich waters off of the Pearl Islands, named by the Spanish explorer Vasco Nuñez de Balboa in honor of the bountiful pearls that were harvested off the islands’ shores. The islands boast white-sand beaches and untouched forests. Explore the coral reefs just offshore, home to white-tipped reef sharks, sea turtles, manta rays and moray eels. After a beach barbecue, sail toward Panama City. Spend our evening touring Old Panama — Casco Viejo — before dinner at a local restaurant.*Accommodation: *The Panorama
Enjoy boating across Gatun Lake — part of the Panama Canal.
Enjoy boating across Gatun Lake — part of the Panama Canal. Along the way, watch for commonly spotted green iguana, three-toed sloth, American crocodile, snail kite and osprey on the hunt for peacock bass. Explore Fort San Lorenzo, a stone fortress that overlooks the mouth of the Chagres River. The face of Fort San Lorenzo has undergone many changes since it was first built by the Spanish in the late 16th century. First captured then razed by pirates, including the infamous Henry Morgan, the fort was rebuilt in its current location on higher ground. Savor lunch overlooking the newly expanded Canal from the park-like setting of the Panama Canal Expansion Observation Center. Return to Panama City and visit the Canal Museum, watching ships in the locks.*Accommodation: *The Panorama
After disembarking, head to Soberanía National Park.
After disembarking, head to Soberanía National Park. Pipeline Road is where the Audubon Society held its world Christmas bird count record for 19 years straight, with 357 species of birds identified in a period of 24 hours. The now-abandoned road built in World War II to transport fuel from one ocean to the other to maintain the pipeline provides excellent walking access to Soberanía’s tropical rainforest. The park boasts an impressive list of over 530 species of birds including the black hawk-eagle, black-cheeked woodpecker, black-breasted puffbird, broad-billed motmot, blue cotinga, purple-throated fruitcrow, masked tytira, violaceous trogon, fasciated antshrike, shining honeycreeper and a great array of North American migrants. Soberania is also home to 105 species of mammals including large felines, tamandua, two and three-toed sloth, four species of monkeys, agouti and 59 endemic plant species in four life zones. Visit the Rainforest Discovery Center, where you enjoy spectacular views of Soberania and spot canopy bird species from the 100-foot observation tower. Standing above the canopy, witness the morning flight of keel-billed toucans, red-lored Amazons and the silent movement of mantled howler monkeys. Continue exploring the network of trails surrounding the Discovery Center and enjoy the hummingbird feeders.*Accommodation: *The Bristol**
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your independent flight home.
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your independent flight home.