Costa Rica & Panama Canal Cruises


Tropical Islands. Exotic Jungles. The Panama Canal.
Experience It All in Private Yacht Style.


Natural and man-made wonders combine in this exotic region where you are an explorer by day with cocktails on the fantail of your boutique ship by night. Costa Rica is one of the most ecologically diverse places on earth over landscapes of rainforest, lakes, cloudforests, volcanoes, and more, boasting an impressive variety of wildlife. Learn more about their history, flora and fauna from a local Naturalist on board and transit the massive Panama Canal during daylight hours. Against all this color and adventure, your white ship rests at anchor awaiting your return from a delightful day of exploring.

Meet your Costa Rican Naturalists!


 

Puerto Caldera to Colón - 7 Days

Come find the natural and man-made wonders combined on this exotic Costa Rican and Panama Canal cruise full of bucket list places and activities.  Learn about the area from a local Naturalist on board, then take a Zodiac ashore and find rare experiences for yourself. Hike through Manuel Antonio National Park in search of its lovely beaches and abundant animal life. Soar high above the Quepos jungle floor as you zipline searching for such wildlife residents as monkeys, sloths, and toucans, then explore Golfo Dulce with some of the most intense rainforest landscapes in the world. Take a daylight transit through the massive Panama Canal, one of the world's most stunning feats of engineering on a yacht that lets you see it all.

Colón to Puerto Caldera - 10 Days

Experience the full majesty of Costa Rica and Panama’s natural and man-made wonders on this 10- or 11-day Costa Rica and Panama Canal cruise. Wiggle your toes in Panama’s white-sand beaches and the black sands of Bahia Herradura. Explore rainforests and cloudforests that are bastions of biodiversity. Transit the Panama Canal, appreciating its incredible scale and triumph of engineering in a way those on mega-cruise ships never will.

History buffs, beach bums and xenophiles will all find something to celebrate on this unique itinerary to Central America and the Caribbean. Discover the barely inhabited tropical islands and friendly Guna Yala villagers of the San Blas Islands. Step back in time to the days of the Spanish Empire as you visit four of the oldest cities in the Americas. Explore forts pockmarked by time and cannon balls. Encounter pirate lore as you dive the wreck of Captain Kidd’s ship off Catalina Island. And relive it all over mofongo and rum in Old San Juan.

Colón to San Juan - 7 Days

History buffs, beach bums and xenophiles will all find something to celebrate on this unique itinerary to Central America and the Caribbean. Discover the barely inhabited tropical islands and friendly Guna Yala villagers of the San Blas Islands. Step back in time to the days of the Spanish Empire as you visit four of the oldest cities in the Americas. Explore forts pockmarked by time and cannon balls. Encounter pirate lore as you dive the wreck of Captain Kidd’s ship off Island Catalina. And relive it all over mofongo and rum in Old San Juan.

Miami to Colón - 10 Days

Combine Caribbean fun with Central American culture on this remarkable 10-day cruise that stretches from Florida to the landmarks and lesser-known small ports along the coastlines of Mexico, Belize, Honduras, Columbia, Costa Rica, and Panama. It’s a balanced blend of exciting activities and cultural experiences offering enlightening insights. Uncover little-known facts about Key West’s famous resident writers, including Robert Frost, Tennessee Williams, and Ernest Hemingway, or sail to the Dry Tortugas National Park on a fast catamaran for an afternoon of snorkeling among vibrant coral reefs, skeletal shipwrecks, and old nautical artifacts. Swim between stalagmites during a guided exploration of Rio Secreto, an underground river system, or take in the view from the top of an ancient Mayan pyramid at the prominent Cobá archaeological site. Clutch a comfy floatation device as you float down Belize’s Cave Branch River and into the shadowy recesses of ancient Mayan caves. Take a trip to a working Honduran farm in Campamento and sample a farm-to-table meal with a local Honduran family. Hike to a rainforest waterfall for a refreshing swim near Trujillo. Scan the treetops and dense undergrowth in Cahuita National Park for sloths, coatis, and iguanas. Snorkel and sunbathe off Red Frog Beach near the small port of Bocas del Toro in Panama, or board a boat for a short voyage to Bird Island where you can observe colorful tropical birds and coastal marine life. This exceptional journey ends near the Old Quarter of Colon, where you can shop for Panamanian souvenirs or make a trip to Embera Quera, an indigenous community living off the grid along the leafy banks of Gatun Lake on the Panama Canal.

Miami to Colón - 10 Days

Combine Caribbean fun with Central American culture on this remarkable 10-day cruise that stretches from Florida to the landmarks and lesser-known small ports along the coastlines of Mexico, Belize, Honduras, Columbia, Costa Rica, and Panama. It’s a balanced blend of exciting activities and cultural experiences offering enlightening insights. Uncover little-known facts about Key West’s famous resident writers, including Robert Frost, Tennessee Williams, and Ernest Hemingway, or sail to the Dry Tortugas National Park on a fast catamaran for an afternoon of snorkeling among vibrant coral reefs, skeletal shipwrecks, and old nautical artifacts. Swim between stalagmites during a guided exploration of Rio Secreto, an underground river system, or take in the view from the top of an ancient Mayan pyramid at the prominent Cobá archaeological site. Clutch a comfy floatation device as you float down Belize’s Cave Branch River and into the shadowy recesses of ancient Mayan caves. Scan the treetops and dense undergrowth in Cahuita National Park for sloths, coatis, and iguanas. Snorkel and sunbathe off Red Frog Beach near the small port of Bocas del Toro in Panama, or board a boat for a short voyage to Bird Island where you can observe colorful tropical birds and coastal marine life. This exceptional journey ends near the Old Quarter of Colon, where you can shop for Panamanian souvenirs or make a trip to Embera Quera, an indigenous community living off the grid along the leafy banks of Gatun Lake on the Panama Canal.

Oranjestad to Colón - 9 Days

Bougainvillea-covered balconies, jungles teeming with wildlife ... there’s more treasure here than the Spanish ever dreamed of. Step back in time to Spain’s colonial heyday in Cartagena and Santa Marta, where museums glitter with pre-Colombian gold and jewelers display fresh-from-the-mine emeralds. Join the birds in the rainforest canopy and caimans in thick mangroves. Dine alfresco beneath a colony of stars and toast the perfect antidote to winter.

An unparalleled exploration of Costa Rica and Panama when you pair a cruise featuring a daylight transit of the Panama Canal with an inland tour of lush cloud forests and Costa Rica’s most prominent volcano is the best way to maximize your time in this region. Whether you choose to hike, kayak or snorkel at pristine destinations like Panama’s Isla Parida, you’ll have an onboard naturalist available to provide insights and answer questions about local fish, flowers, and wildlife. Venture inland to trek through Costa Rica’s Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve and then experience the unique magic of a nighttime walk among nocturnal animals and sleeping tropical birds in the private Curi-Cancha Reserve. You’ll also spend an unforgettable day around the steep slopes of Arenal, Costa Rica’s most famous and active stratovolcano, where you can choose between a heart-pounding zipline ride among the high treetops, or a more leisurely hanging bridge walk featuring breathtaking rainforest and waterfall views.

Puerto Vallarta to Puerto Caldera - 8 Days

Mexico’s southern coast is known for its beauty, its ruins, and its cuisines. Enjoy all three as you make your way south from Puerto Vallarta through regions rich with indigenous cultures and natural abundance. Ride an ATV along lush jungle trails in Manzanillo. Try your hand at cooking Oaxaca style in Huatulco. Explore the mysterious Mayan ruins of Izapa from Puerto Chiapas.This voyage is a treat for the senses. Come indulge them all.

Venture into lush and pristine rainforests and explore forgotten relics of the Spanish Empire during this 15-day cruise from Costa Rica to the Bahamas. Ride horseback to a mountain summit surrounded by an extensive Costa Rican rainforest near Quepos. Glide your kayak past twisted mangrove roots as you seek out curious bottle-nosed porpoises in an estuary near Puerto Jimenez in Costa Rica. Watch shipping traffic and learn about deadly diseases and the daunting construction challenges confronting French and American engineers as you experience a guided daytime transit of the Panama Canal. Browse handcrafted wares and cluttered, colorful stalls amid the numerous shops nestled inside the imposing Las Bóvedas, a 200-year-old former Spanish dungeon renovated into a shopping arcade in Cartagena, Colombia. Kick back in a rustic bamboo raft during a guided tour of rural traditions and Jamaican living on the Rio Grande River near Port Antonia.

Vancouver to San Juan - 39 Days

Take the full measure of the Americas as you explore North America’s vibrant West Coast, Central America’s man-made and natural wonders, and South America’s colonial and pre-Colombian legacy. Dine and sip your way down the U.S. West Coast, treating your palate to fine wines, flavorful microbrews and tastebud-thrilling Baja Med cuisine. Discover amazing nature sanctuaries from Jacques Cousteau’s favorite Sea of Cortez to Costa Rica’s wildlife-rich jungles. Cross the Panama Canal as only a small ship can, with the great gates looming up above. And investigate everything from Mayan ruins to colonial capitals, breathtaking beaches to remote Indian villages.

Enjoy the best of both worlds, a port-rich journey through southern Iberia and a classic ocean crossing that’s unscripted and utterly relaxing. Everything you’re looking for is here. Whimsical Modernist architecture in Barcelona, as colorful as it is unconventional. The inescapable footprints of Moors throughout Andalusia from the tile-and-fountain artistry of the Alcazar and Alhambra to cuisine—savory foods seasoned with fruits and spices, desserts made with almonds and honey, rice and saffron transformed into Spain’s signature paella. Honor the Moors with a port call in Casablanca, within reach of Marrakech, Rabat, and of course, the Kasbah. Walk the streets of Lisbon’s Alfama district, eyes dazzled by brilliant azulejo tiles, and make your way to Belem Tower, a classic departure point during the Age of Discovery. Watch from the Yacht Club as Lisbon fades into the distance knowing time now belongs to you, and only you. Work out in the fully redesigned Fitness Center. Treat your palate to French-inspired cuisine and wine pairings in Amphora. Or simply wrap yourself in a soft waffle weave robe and snack on grapes as the world passes by your suite window.

Combine a classic Atlantic Ocean crossing with unforgettable visits to Caribbean small ports, Lisbon’s Gothic landmarks and the gateway to the Panama Canal during this far-ranging, 25-day cruise between Central America and Portugal. Gaze out from the crenelated battlements of Lisbon’s Belém Tower, a Tagus River fortification that greeted returning Portuguese seafarers for centuries. Curl up with a favorite book while planning a week’s worth of massages and indulgent spa treatments during your Atlantic crossing. Swim, snorkel or SCUBA among vibrant aquatic wildlife at the Bonaire National Marine Park. Taste the shredded beef, cumin-infused richness of Colón’s Ropa Vieja, a unique and popular breakfast and dinner meal throughout this busy Panama Canal seaport.

Miami to Puerto Caldera - 21 Days

Calling all nature lovers and independent-minded souls who like to explore off the tourist track—this is the cruise you’ve been looking for. With six ports in Costa Rica and five in Panama (plus a full Canal transit with onboard Historian you’ll want to bring comfortable shoes, a good camera and an adventurous spirit. The terrain varies from marshy Everglades to rainforest canopies, cloud forests to sparkling blue underground rivers—ready for you to explore by airboat, innertube, zipline and more. You never know when you might catch a glimpse of a resplendent quetzal or a shy spider monkey, not to mention the whales and dolphins of Golfo Dulce. With your Costa Rican Naturalist onboard for the duration of the cruise, you’ll always have someone to ask when you have a question. Our unique itinerary is designed for those who’d rather make tracks than follow them, taking you to seven small ship-only ports, most of which are Windstar exclusives. And when you’re not exploring Isla Parida in the middle of Chiriquí National Marine Park or remote Corcovado National Park from Bahia Drake, there are coffee plantations and Mayan ruins to discover, Embera Indians to meet, conch fritters to eat, and white-sand beaches to lie on devoid of noise or traffic.

Begin in Colón by exploring the engineering wonder of the Panama Canal. In Bocas del Toro, soak up the laidback atmosphere and colorful clapboard houses before heading to Isla San Andres to swim with puffer fish and sea turtles at the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Snorkel and kayak with dolphins in the ocean playground of Roatan, and sample baleadas and pastilles with delicious Honduran coffee. Visit the howler monkey sanctuary in Belize City and explore the ancient Mayan ruins of Chacchoben on Costa Maya. Discover Cozumel’s Chankanaab, an eco-park with underwater caverns home to dolphins, manatees, and sea turtles. Wander the Mayan Temple of El Meco on Isla Mujeres and experience Grand Cayman’s energetic art scene, with over 250 practicing artists. Explore Cayman Brac’s island-long bluff with caves, secluded beaches, and lush forests, and reach for the incredible Reach Falls from Port Antonio, Jamaica. Visit the Caribbean’s oldest city and largest botanical garden in Santo Domingo and discover white-sand beaches ringed by coral reefs on Isla Catalina. In Virgin Gorda, swim in the underground pools known as “The Baths,” and complete your journey with Dutch treats and French delicacies in the “Cuisine Capital of the Caribbean,” St. Maarten.

Puerto Caldera to Miami - 17 Days

Internalize the Costa Rican philosophy of pura vida as you live life in the moment, savoring each and every new experience on your Central American adventure. The rainforest becomes your muse, inspiring you with the throaty roar of howler monkeys, banana-beaked toucans, and weightless flight on canopy ziplines. Fish for mahi-mahi in Quepos, learn to cook Tico-style in Puerto Jimenez, snorkel with angelfish and parrotfish in Chiriquí National Marine Park on Isla Parida—no two days are alike. Stand on deck as you transit the Panama Canal, so cunningly constructed that there are no pumps involved in moving all that water, only gravity. Emerge on the other side to find a wealth of UNESCO sites—Portobelo/San Lorenzo, guarding the Spanish mule trail that crossed the Darien jungle before there was a canal, and Casco Viejo, the Old Quarter of Panama City with its elegant flower-draped Spanish colonial buildings. Get to know the Embera Indians—their language, traditions, and lifestyle intact since before the Spanish arrived. See how the Ngobe indigenous people live within the jungle while growing cacao and making chocolate. Hike with the indigenous Naso people near La Amistad National Park. Explore Mayan culture, ruins and relics in Belize and Cozumel. And as your journey nears its end, enjoy Miami with its bright sherbet-colored Art Deco district.

Bird calls intermingle with primate chatter throughout the dense canopy of a Costa Rican cloudforest. Towering container ships glide past the Culbra Cut’s tiered rock slopes, formerly the most difficult stretch of the Panama Canal. Sweet rum cocktails provide cool respite on a hot white beach in Santo Domingo. Indulge in the sights, sounds and sensations of Central America and the best stops throughout the Windward and Leeward Islands of the Caribbean during this 3-week cruise through pristine rainforest preserves, relaxing beaches and one-of-a-kind tropical bars, rustic cafés and trendy boutiques.

Combine Central America’s majestic natural scenery with Caribbean small-port charms during this 2-week cruise through Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. Learn the ecological importance of cloudforests from an engaging naturalist as you search leafy rainforest canopies for sleepy sloths, rare birds and skittering primates. Dive, swim and hike among the refreshing tropical splendors of Windstar’s Signature Beach Party on Panama’s Isla Parida archipelago. Discover the engineering challenges and triumphs during a narrated daylight transit of the Panama Canal. Sink your teeth in doughy, cheese-stuffed Arepas paired with rich, fresh-roasted artisan coffees at a Colombian café. Wander the length of El Morro’s fortress walls in San Juan, Puerto Rico, a former sanctuary for New World seafarers and daring smugglers aligned with the Spanish Empire.

Uncover little-known secrets and remote destinations throughout Key West and Central America during this remarkable cruise to the small ports like Puerto Limon and Isla San Andres, Mayan ruins and remote cloud forests throughout Mexico, Belize, Honduras, Panama, and Costa Rica. Hang out with the 6-toed descendants of Ernest Hemingway’s cats in Key West, Florida. Explore the weathered columns and altars of a Mayan civilization near Cozumel in Mexico. Sip sweet and fruity rum cocktails beneath a thatched roof along the waterfront of Belize City. Sample native ereba, a regional bread made with tapioca, paired with fresh fish in Roatan, Honduras. Take a guided daylight transit of the Panama Canal and learn about challenges and setbacks encountered by American and French engineers at the Panama Canal Museum. This remarkable journey concludes along the warm shoreline of Puerto Caldera, Costa Rica, where you can explore tropical rainforests at the nearby Carara National Park, or sit and watch surfers in the nearby town of Jacó.

St. Maarten to St. Maarten - 56 Days

Explore the depth and breadth of the Caribbean on this 56-day odyssey, from tiny yachtsmen’s favorites to glitzy celebrity getaways, historic colonial towns to the incredible jungles of wildlife. Go cave tubing in Belize and diving in Bonaire. Snorkel with friendly sea turtles and rays in waters as clear as glass. Climb the battlements of colonial forts and the arrowhead peak of Gros Piton in St. Lucia. It’s the ultimate cruise, circling the Caribbean discovering the brilliant colors, textures and fascinating history found here.

Start your expedition in historic Old San Juan with the imposing façade of El Morro fortress. In the Dominican Republic, enjoy Isla Catalina’s gleaming white-sand beaches ringed by coral reefs and Santo Domingo, one of the oldest cities in the Caribbean. Revel in the romantic Colombian city of Santa Marta and enjoy a late night in Cartagena with extra time to explore the historic UNESCO site of La Capital and wander the brightly colored streets. Behold the engineering feats of the Panama Canal. From Colón to Puerto Caldera, attend onboard presentations from local naturalists to make your trip even more meaningful. In Panama’s Pearl Islands and Isla Parida, discover beautiful beaches, amazing flora, fauna and some of the world’s best big game fishing. Known for its biodiversity, Costa Rica brings a chance to explore the lush coastline of Golfo Dulce, get an adrenaline rush ziplining or horseback riding in Bahia Drake, search for monkeys, sloths and toucans in Quepos’ Manuel Antonio National Park, fish or surf Jaco Beach near Bahia Herradura, and take an excursion to Monteverde Cloudforest or Tortuguero National Park from Puerto Caldera. 

San Diego to Puerto Caldera - 15 Days

Mexico and Costa Rica await as you sail from San Diego to the storied waters of the Sea of Cortez. Sip smooth, wood-aged artisanal Jalisco reposado and añejo tequilas distilled from local family distilleries. Learn about sea turtle habitats and the effects of human encroachment during a visit to a Loreto sanctuary. Wander among the shadowy stone recesses of 3,000-year-old Izapa Mayan ruins. Before this remarkable 15-day journey ends you’ll have opportunities to snorkel among puffers and yellow butterfly fish near Costa Rican beaches and venture inland to dense and misty cloudforests, unique havens for almost 20 percent of our planet’s butterfly species.

Start off with a splash in Aruba at some of the Caribbean’s best beaches. Then it’s off to Colombia for romantic Santa Marta’s museums full of pre-Colombian gold and Cartagena’s 400-year-old walls with stories to tell. Relax at sea en route to Bocas del Toro and soak up the laidback atmosphere full of colorful clapboard houses. Hop over to Costa Rica’s Puerto Moin to sample cashews and access amazing national parks. Once in Colón, head to the jungle to meet Embera Indians or take an aerial tram ride through the rainforest canopy.  On Isla San Andres, swim with puffer fish and sea turtles at the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Enjoy a day at sea before snorkeling, kayaking or swimming with dolphins in the ocean playground of Roatan and don’t forget to sample baleadas and pastilles with delicious Honduran coffee. In Belize City, visit the howler monkey sanctuary then travel north to Costa Maya to explore the ancient Mayan ruins of Chacchoben. Appreciate the 600-mile-long Mesoamerican reef one more time in Cozumel by adventuring into Chankanaab, an eco-park with underwater caverns home to dolphins, manatees and sea turtles.

Set sail from Barbados to a hiking opportunity on Bequia’s Mount Pleasant, then on past the UNESCO Pitons of St. Lucia.  Swim Guadeloupe’s sparkling blue waters and appreciate the view from Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park in St. Kitts, search for celebrities in St. Bart’s and swim in the underground pools of Virgin Gorda. Take in Puerto Rico’s El Morro, visit the Dominican’s Isla Catalina, and see Santo Domingo, one of the oldest cities in the Caribbean. Revel in the romantic Colombian city of Santa Marta and enjoy a late night departure in Cartagena to witness the walls that once repelled pirates and now exclude cars. Visit Kuna Indians in their San Blas Island village and behold engineering feats of the Panama Canal. Discover white sand beaches, amazing flora, fauna and some of the world’s best big game fishing in Panama’s Pearl Islands and Isla Parida. Known for its biodiversity, Costa Rica brings a chance to explore Golfo Dulce’s lush rainforest in search of monkeys and toucans, Bahia Drake’s adventures of zip-lining and horseback riding, Quepos’ famous Manuel Antonio National Park, Bahia Herradura’s excellent fishing and surfing at Jaco Beach, and Puerto Caldera’s access to Monteverde Cloudforest and Tortuguero National Park.

From mesmerizing steel-drum bands to unforgettable spicy chicken smoked and grilled in recycled oil drums, this 18-day tropical adventure offers extraordinary experiences in Costa Rica, Panama, Columbia and the Caribbean. Wander among Willemstad’s colorful, gabled store façades and narrow streets. Snorkel or SCUBA amid Bonaire National Park’s dizzying and colorful schools of fish. Sample endless variations of St. Maarten’s mouthwatering marinated ribs. Take in the entire Panama Canal during a narrated daylight transit. Depending on which direction you travel, this exceptional cruise can add a land tour to either conclude or begin your adventure among fragrant rare orchids concealed in the leafy shade of 300-year-old trees in Costa Rica’s Monteverde Cloudforest.

Explore small ports such as Isla Parida and Puerto Chiapas and popular landmarks like the Mayan ruins and Manuel Antonio Park in detail throughout Mexico and Costa Rica before transiting the busy Panama Canal during this 15-day journey along Western Central America. Swim, sunbathe and snorkel on remote Baja beaches, then savor Sea of Cortez sunsets over hearty Tempranillo wine from nearby Valle de Guadalupe. Sample refined agave cocktails in a vibrant Puerto Vallarta beachside bar. Experience the rarity of a daylight transit of the Panama Canal as you learn insights about the history and challenges endured throughout the construction of this maritime marvel.

Delve into shady cloudforests, scenic waterfalls, and little-known tropical beaches on both coastlines of Central America before cruising to the best Caribbean sights and destinations during this 28-day cruise throughout Costa Rica, Panama, Columbia, and the Caribbean islands. Scrutinize treetops for reclusive squirrel monkeys in Manuel Antonio National Park near Quepos, Costa Rica. Swim among dolphins, sea turtles, and countless tropical fish off the shores of Panama’s Isla Parida. Cruise past historic landmarks and commercial watercraft during a guided daylight transit of the Panama Canal. Stroll the dark corridors beneath the formidable walls of Castillo San Felipe de Barajas in Cartagena, Columbia. Your memorable journey culminates in San Juan, Puerto Rico where you can wander among the reinforced, angular walls of Castillo San Cristóbal, a fortress that encircled San Juan two centuries ago, or slurp on spicy asopao, the Puerto Rican version of gumbo, on a sunny restaurant patio.

Traverse the Caribbean and uncover the history and natural beauty of Central and South America during this 8-day cruise from Colón, Panama to Nassau in the Bahamas. Delve into the shadowy ruins of 400-year-old Fort Lorenzo, a weathered Spanish fortress engulfed in lush, overgrown tropical foliage that until 1999 served as a jungle training area for the US Army. Meander along worn cobblestoned streets and browse tiny shops throughout Cartagena’s walled old town in Colombia, or peruse centuries-old artifacts among the museum displays inside the Palace of Inquisition. Then step into the cool, dim chambers beneath Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas, a former Spanish stronghold that safeguarded gold and silver destined for the holds of formidable galleons bound for Spain.

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