DAY 1 Tuesday 2 April, 2019 Departure/San Diego
Our holiday begins when we fly to Los Angeles, arriving the same day, as we cross the International Date Line. Upon arrival we transfer to San Diego late morning. We will enjoy a sightseeing tour of the city before checking into our four-star hotel located in the Gaslamp Quarter. We will see Balboa Park, the cultural heart of the city and the Gaslamp Quarter, the centre of downtown. We also visit the Old Town, site of the original Spanish settlement near the San Diego River. More than twenty buildings have been restored to form the interesting, Old Town San Diego State Historic Park.
DAY 2 Wednesday 3 April, 2019 San Diego/MS Volendam
This morning we visit the USS Midway Museum. Aboard this enormous aircraft carrier we will see 29 restored aircraft and over sixty exhibits. The self-guided audio tour narrated by Midway sailors brings the aircraft carriers history to life. Afterwards we board the MS Volendam for our Panama Canal Cruise.
DAY 3 Thursday 4 April, 2019 At sea
Our first day at sea.
During the day, explore and enjoy the fantastic facilities and many activities available on the Volendam. This evening join us for welcome drinks. We will also take this opportunity to outline our activities during the cruise.
DAY 4 Friday 5 April, 2019 At sea
A day at sea to enjoy the facilities of the ship. This afternoon test your knowledge with fellow group members as we play Trivial Pursuit, with prizes for the winners.
Day 5 Saturday 6 April, 2019 Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
Puerto Vallarta is a city experiencing constant growth and development, while at the same time maintaining a provincial air. It was named after Ignacio Vallarta a former governor of the region. We will have a sightseeing tour with a local guide, where we have time for a stroll along the Malecon (board walk) to see the many shops and art galleries. We visit Our Lady of Guadalupe, situated in a beautiful Plaza. We travel to Los Arcos, where we have a wonderful view over the bay. We then travel to where Tequila is manufactured and an expert will explain the process. We will be able to try different flavours. There will also be some time for shopping.
DAY 6 Sunday 7 April, 2019 At Sea
A day at sea to enjoy the facilities of the ship.
DAY 7 Monday 8 April, 2019 Hautulco, Mexico
We will explore the beautiful beaches of Huatulco today. Located on the Pacific coast in the state of Oaxaca, Huatulco, also known as Bahias de Huatulco, is renowned for its nine spectacular bays. After a relaxing tour we will return to the Volendam for lunch.
DAY 8 Tuesday 9 April, 2019 Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala
Today we travel to the beautiful city of Antigua, a designated UNESCO World Heritage site. The historic city, approximately a 90-minute drive from Puerto Quetzal, is home to several historical landmarks that have been preserved from the 17th and 18th centuries, including the Palace of the Captains-General and the Universidad de San Carlos. This visit will give us an understanding of Guatemala’s colonial history.
DAY 9 Wednesday 10 April, 2019 Cortino, Nicaragua
We travel inland to Leon, one of Nicaragua’s oldest cities, where we see the beautiful Cathedral and Market Square. There will be time for lunch and shopping before returning to the ship.
DAY 10 Thursday 11 April, 2019 Puntarenas, Costa Rica
The Central Pacific’s largest city, Puntarenas sits on a long, narrow peninsula in the Gulf of Nicoya. It was discovered by Hennan Ponce de Leon in 1519. We take a boat ride on the Tarcoles River. See the local bird and plant life and see crocodiles on this fascinating exploration of Costa Rica’s wildlife. In the afternoon we take a ride on the aerial tram where we will see every level of the tropical transitional forest from the ground to the treetops. The Aerial Tram lets you experience firsthand all the secrets the forest keeps while you fly above the treetops accompanied by a magnificent ocean view, and a peaceful experience in harmony with nature.
Day 11 Friday 12 April, 2019 At sea
A day at sea to enjoy the facilities of the ship. This afternoon, join fellow group members for a fun game of bingo.
DAY 12 Saturday 13 April, 2019 Panama Canal
Today will be a highlight of the cruise as we sail along the Panama Canal. It is a 77-kilometre long canal joining the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean and is a key link for international maritime trade. Built from 1904 to 1914, annual traffic has risen from about 1,000 ships in the canal’s early days to more than 14,000 vessels now. It has been named one of the seven modern wonders of the world by the American Society of Civil Engineers. On the route of the canal there are a series of 3 sets of locks, the Gatun, Pedro Miguel and the Miraflores locks. A complete transit of the canal usually takes between 9 and 10 hours. Watch from the deck as we transverse this miracle of engineering.
DAY 13 Sunday 14 April, 2019 Cartagena, Colombia
Cartagena is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Our tour will take us through the city to experience everything it has to offer. We begin with a pleasant drive through Bocagrande, the modern residential district in Cartagena. Built at the beginning of the 1600s, the Convent of La Popa is quite stunning. It has been built on a hill from where we will get magnificent views of the city and the bay area. Our tour will continue through San Felipe’s Fort which was built in the 1600s and used to protect the city from invaders for centuries. Inside the fort is the Old City, a real gem of colonial architecture, packed with churches, monasteries, plaza’s and palaces. We will enjoy a relaxing stroll around this spectacular walled colonial city with time to shop and stop for lunch.
DAY 14 Monday 15 April, 2019 At sea
A day at sea to enjoy the facilities of the ship.
DAY 15 Tuesday 16 April, 2019 At sea
A day to enjoy the facilities of the ship. This afternoon join us for a game of Scattergories.
DAY 16 Wednesday 17 April, 2019 Half Moon Cay, Bahamas
We arrive at the beautiful Bahaman Island of Half Moon Cay. We have a free day to participate in the local activities from glass bottom boat tours to diving and snorkelling. You may just want to sit on the beach with a good book.
Day 17 Thursday 18 April, 2019 Disembark Fort Lauderdale/ New York
This morning our cruise comes to an end in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. We disembark early morning and will be transferred to the airport, for our flight to New York. Upon arrival we will be transferred to our Hotel for check in.
DAY 18 Friday 19 April, 2019 New York
Today we have a sightseeing tour of the city. We will see the major sites of the city including the Empire State Building, Wall Street, the Rockefeller Centre, Fifth Avenue, Times Square and much more. We will also the 9/11 Memorial. The rest of the afternoon is free for sightseeing and shopping. A walk up 5th Avenue is an unforgettable experience as is walking around Soho, Tribeca or Brooklyn or Central Park.
DAY 19 Saturday 20 April, 2019 New York
This morning we travel by boat to the famous Statue of Liberty. A gift from the French to American people in 1886 and engineered by Gustave Eiffel, it has been the symbol of the freedom of the USA to immigrants for over 100 years. We then travel to historic Ellis Island where half the population of the US entered the United States for the first time. We will see the route that new immigrants took through the processing room, medical appraisal room and entry room. We will enjoy an included farewell dinner this evening.
Day 20 Sunday 21 April, 2019 Departure
This morning will be free for shopping and sightseeing before we depart for the airport and our flight back to Australia.
Day 21 Monday 22 April, 2019 In flight
Day 22 Tuesday 23 April, 2019 Australia
This evening we arrive in Australia and tour arrangements conclude.