Category Archives: Central America

Panama Canal Celebrates its 100th Birthday

Today mark’s the 100-year anniversary of the completion of the Panama Canal. The Panama Canal is a “man-made” wonder, an engineering marvel that changed the way the world traveled and moved goods.

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64-Guest Safari Voyager Added to the Un-Cruise Adventures Growing Fleet

Safari VoyagerUn-Cruise Adventures (formerly American Safari Cruises and InnerSea Discoveries) announced today its acquisition of the 64-guest Safari Voyager for its yacht fleet with plans to offer Luxury Adventures year-round in Mexico’s Sea of Cortés beginning in November 2013. In winter 2015, the vessel will transition to sailing year-round in Central America. Previously Lindblad Expedition’s Sea Voyager, the vessel is currently in Colombia undergoing renovation.
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m/v Tere Moana to Join Paul Gauguin Cruises Fleet in December 2012


Late in 2011, Paul Gauguin Cruises announced the acquisition of its second luxury ship, the m/v Tere Moana. The ship will enter service for Paul Gauguin Cruises in December 2012 after a multifaceted renovation, and be renamed The Moana.

The Moana will accommodate just 90 guests in 45 staterooms and will reflect the high standard of quality and service already established for the cruise line by the m/s Paul Gauguin.

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2011 Holidays Aboard Small Ships

Many people settle down with family during the holidays to catch up, and reconnect with loved ones. For a small group, the holidays are a perfect time to explore and experience the world.

Small ship cruises have been busy this holiday season, exploring diverse areas of our world, from the southern reaches of Antarctica and the South Pacific, up to the unique Galapagos Islands and Central America, and further to Europe and America’s southern Atlantic coast.

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Tired of Winter? Warm Up with a Small Ship Cruise

Tired of this ever-persistent winter? Longing for a color palette void of white and grey? Consider a small-ship cruise in more tropical locales.

Sunstone Tours & Cruises is spotlighting three small-ship destinations this winter; Central America (including Costa Rica and Panama), the Amazon and the Galapagos Islands. These “hot” destinations (no pun intended) provide intimate access to unique wildlife, landscapes found no where else and cultures disconnected from the modern world. We currently have great deals (for a limited time) on select sailings:

  • Costa Rica & Panama – Free land extensions and up to $600 savings per couple.
  • The Amazon – Save between $500 and $1000 per person on select sailings.
  • The Galapagos Islands – Free roundtrip airfare or save $1,000 per person on select sailings.

Visit our special warm weather, tropical small ship cruise website for further information on these destinations, itineraries, dates and rates.

Where are the small ships on Christmas Day?

Merry Christmas to all who celebrate. And a good movie and chinese food to those who celebrate Hanukkah

We have done some fun research as to where some of my favorite small ships are sailing on Christmas Day. To the best of my knowledge, every one of these ships were sold out, sailing at 100% occupancy. We have Christmas bookings for 2011 and 2011. It is not to early to start planning.

American Glory – Lake George, Ocala National Forest, Florida

American Safari Explorer- Kona Big Island, for Christmas 2011
American Safari Quest – whale watching, Baja

Cruceros Australis – Stella Australis – Punta Arenas – Chile
Cruceros Australis – Via Australis = Cape Horn – Argentina
Cruceros Australis – Mare Australlis – Patagonia – Argentina

I.E. Evolution – Espanola Islands, sea lions, Galapagos

Le Diamant – sailing Vietnam, South East Asia
Le Levant – sailing Trinidad
Le Ponet – sailing Persian Gulf

Lindblad Expeditions Salacia – sailing Egypt

National Geographic Endeavour – Santa Cruz Charles Darwin Station Galapagos
National Geographic Explorer – sailing Antarctica
National Geographic Islander – Seymour Island, Galapagos
National Geographic Sea Bird – day at sea whale watching, Baja
National Geographic Sea Lion – sailing Panama Canal Transit, Costa Rica

Paul Gauguin Cruises m/s Paul Gauguin—Moorea, Society Islands (French Polynesia)

Regent Seven Seas Navigator—sea day; from Cabo San Lucas to Zihuatanejo, Mexico

SeaDream Yacht Club SeaDream I—Jost van Dyke, British Virgin Islands
SeaDream Yacht Club SeaDream II—Coconut Grove, Nevis

Silversea Prince Albert II—South Georgia, Antarctica

State of Galapagos Island travel

Galapagos Islands – There are a huge number of cruise operators in this area of the world. At Sunstone Tours we only work with a handfull of operators that we know and trust, like Lindblad Expeditions and International Expeditions.  It is times like these that our expertise and experience comes into play. Our clients who are now traveling in the Galapagos are taken care of, our agency is kept up to the minute by our suppliers who are on the ground in Ecuador and Galapagos. We can sleep at night knowing our clients are well taken care of.

Without a good travel agent you are on your own !!!

Lan Suspends Flights To Quito Yesterday Lan cancelled flights to Quito and increased security at its installations because of political unrest in Ecuador. Hundreds of angry police,who were incensed after a law was passed to cut their benefits,plunged Ecuador into chaos yesterday, shutting down airports and blocking highways in a nationwide strike. The government declared a state of siege, putting the military in charge of public order, suspending civil liberties and allowing soldiers to carry out searches without a warrant. Colombia closed its border with Ecuador and Peru decided to close its borders as well. LAN, which has domestic passenger operations in Ecuador, said the airport at the country’s business hub Guayaquil was not closed, but passengers were not being checked in for flights. The military is currently in control of the situation in Ecuador as of 1 October 2010, and efforts are underway to clear debris from roadways. However, due to the widespread unrest that occurred on 30 September, a significant amount of debris and still-burning tires continues to hamper ground transportation, and disruptions will continue throughout the day. There have been no reports thus far of any further protest actions or disturbances; the military is also now in control of the police force. Airports, including Quito’s international airport and Guayaquil’s Jose Joaquin de Olmedo International Airport , are currently open and flight operations are scheduled to return to normal on 1 October; however, in light of the number of aircraft on the ground the majority of initial flight operations will be departures until the backlog is cleared sufficiently to begin accepting arriving flights. Travelers should ensure that roads are passable and that they will be able to book travel on scheduled flight services before attempting to reach airports. It is not currently known to what extent local businesses will resume operations on 1 October.

Small ship lines help Cruise West passengers

If you were booked or thinking of booking Cruise West, we need to talk.
By now you should have applied for your refund through your credit card, travel insurance or USTOA.

My other small ship operators are reaching out to accommodate Cruise West passengers. There are a number of options depending on your destination. Some are similar to the Cruise West product, others different. This is where you need a small ship expert like Linda, Sunstone Tours to help you. Give us a call 888-815-5428

American Safari Cruises have offered reduced prices to passengers who were booked on Cruise West sailings that have been cancelled.

Orion Expedition Cruises to offer discounts for passengers booked on Cruise West this year and next.

InnerSea Discoveries, upcoming 2011 Alaska, Mexico’s Sea of Cortes and Columbia River seasons.

Lindblad Expeditions is offering varied discounts to Cruise West passengers.

American Cruise Line will honor the Cruise West price on their remaining Columbia Snake River 2010 sailings.

Cruise West Offers Tempting 2009/2010 Holiday Sailings

Cruise West, one of the world’s leading providers of small-ship explorations will offer four holiday itineraries in 2009 and 2010. Sailing into the firecracker lavish spectacle of Sydney’s Harbor on New Year’s Eve; bidding farewell to 2009 in the wilds of Costa Rica; savoring a traditional Nochebuena Christmas Eve feast in Mexico’s Sea of Cortes; or satisfying all the senses in Vietnam on Thanksgiving.

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Cruise West Offers Epic Year-Long Global Adventure

Voyages of the Great Explorers

Ground Breaking Journey Will Visit 242 Ports, 59 Countries on 24 Voyages

Marco Polo; Odysseus; Leif Eriksson; Christopher Columbus; James Cook; Ferdinand Magellan — history’s great sea explorers have inspired an epic global voyage destined to become the most memorable cruise of a lifetime.

These legendary adventurers whose travels shaped much of the known and the new world set the theme for Cruise West’s Voyages of the Great Explorers — a 335-day circumnavigation of the world. Departing Singapore on March 6, 2010, Cruise West’s flagship, the 120-guest, all-suite Spirit of Oceanus will sail westward, following the sun, to return to Singapore on February 3, 2011. Read the rest of this entry