Andean Coast - Expedition from the Jungle to the Desert

Our journey begins in lush Costa Rican rain forest, before we sail south to Bocos del Toro for a chance to snorkel in the clear blue waters. Later, we enjoy a transit of the iconic Panama Canal, then on to explore wildlife at Isla de la Plata. In Peru, we visit fantastic sites of ancient civilizations, before experiencing the colonial beauty of Lima, exploring the mystery of the Nazca Lines and ending our journey in colorful Valparaíso.

  • Enjoy beautiful Costa Rica
  • Explore some of the most important archaeological sites in South America
  • Experience a transit of the Panama Canal
  • Visit a mix of exciting and colourful cities

Do you have questions about this itinerary?

Get in touch with one of our Personal Expedition Advisors to help answer any questions and start booking your expedition to South America, today! 

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Cruise Itinerary

This is an expedition where the elements rule, so the weather and wind conditions will determine our final schedule. Safety is paramount and the captain will decide the sailing itinerary during the voyage. Therefore, this itinerary is just an indication of what you can experience, and why every expedition with Hurtigruten is unique.

Departure October 15, 2019

Departs from San José, Costa Rica

We begin our expedition with MS Fram in lush Costa Rica, which may be the happiest place on earth and is most certainly the home to more than 50 species of hummingbirds.

Sandy Paradise

Our first stop in Panama is among the sandy Caribbean islands of Bocas del Toro. Unwind on the beautiful beaches or take to the waters to investigate the magnificent coral reefs.

Engineering Marvel

After a technical stop at Colón, be sure to go out on deck as MS Fram maneuvers through a series of locks and artificial canals that make up the amazing Panama Canal.

Next, on to Puerto Piña, where we may observe whales. Enjoy our lecture program on a day at sea, then step ashore at Isla de la Plata, known Ecuador's "other Galapagos" because of the abundance of wildlife found here. Take a nature trial hike or head down to a sandy beach; either way be sure to keep a lookout for blue- footed boobies, albatross and many other bird species.

Ancient Kingdom

In Salaverry, we visit the ruins of the ancient Chimu kingdom, featuring the largest mud brick citadel of the Americas from the pre-Columbian era. Then we sail to Peru's capital Lima, with its ornate colonial architecture.

Lines of Mystery

At San Martin, you can explore the beautiful and mysterious geoglyphs known as the Nazca Lines. The largest of the figures is over 980 feet in size and we suggest they are best viewed from above!

The journey concludes in the poetically lovely city of Valparaíso. Enjoy a ride on one of the funiculars for a sweeping panoramic view of the bay and colorful houses.

This voyage offers an unforgettable experience, with wild nature, fascinating cities, vibrant South American culture and captivating lectures.


Day 1
View of San José, Costa Rica
View of San José, Costa Rica Photo

Costa Rican Capital

San José, Costa Rica

Modern, bustling San José boasts a vibrant art scene and beautiful European-inspired architecture. Visit the fine museums of gold and jade on your overnight stay here.

Day 2
Puerto Limon, Costa Rica_©Simon Dannhauer - Shutterstock_Day 16.png
Photo: Simon Dannhauer Photo


Puerto Limón

After breakfast, you will be transferred to the ship in Puerto Limon. On your way, enjoy the Tortuguero Canals on an adventure tour. We embark on our sea journey in Puerto Limon, which was established in 1502 when Christopher Columbus landed here during his exploration of the New World. 

Day 3

Amazing Wildlife

Bocas del Toro

Bocas del Toro, an archipelago of 9 islands, 52 cays and thousands of islets, is a colorful place, full of Caribbean-style clapboard houses. The area is home to a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Panama's first National Marine Park. Considered the 'Galapagos of the Caribbean', Bocas del Toro is also one of the most biologically diverse places on earth. 

Day 4
Panama Canal_©Mark52 - Shutterstock_Day 14.png
Photo: Mark52 / Shutterstock Photo

Connecting Two Oceans

Panama Canal

We enter the amazing Panama Canal. Experience the thrill of canal transit and the intricacy of the lock's system firsthand, as MS Fram is lifted over 85 feet above sea level, from one body of water to the next.

Day 5

Riches of the Sea

Puerto Piña

Puerto Piña is a small town next to the Bahía Piña, a narrow bay that is frequented by humpback whales, bottlenose dolphins, sharks and rays. This area attracts deep-sea fishermen from all over the world with many fishing world records have been set in these waters. Enjoy hiking along trails in the jungle, kayaking or relaxing on the beach and swimming. 

Day 6

Learning and Relaxing

At sea

Enjoy a relaxing day at sea. Our experienced lecturers will share their knowledge in fascinating talks, and we invite you to spend time on deck to fully enjoy the deep relaxation of a day at sea.

Day 7

The Other Galapagos

Isla de la Plata

Parque Nacional Machalilla is Ecuador’s only coastal national park, often known as Ecuador’s "Other Galapagos" because of its abundance of marine birdlife. Isla de la Plata is home to blue-footed boobies, nesting waved albatrosses and frigate birds among many others. The island is great for hikers, has plenty of birdwatching trails and offers great swimming and snorkelling. 

Day 8

Better Photos

At sea

Our Expedition Team will continue the lecture program to share their knowledge and experience, as well as summarize the voyage so far and let you know about plans for the exciting days to come. Our onboard Expedition Photographer will be available to help you with the basics of expedition photography.

Day 9

Temple of the Sun and Moon

Salaverry, Peru

The small port of Salaverry is the starting point for the excursion to the ancient Chimu kingdom (700-1400 AD), who founded their capital by the banks of the Moche River. Chan Chan ("sun-sun") covers an area of 12 square miles and was built using clay, mud, pebbles, straw and cane. It is considered the largest mud-brick citadel of the Americas in pre-Hispanic times, a remarkable piece of architecture that was listed by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage in 1986. 

Day 10

Fresh Salt Air

At sea

As we sail toward Lima, enjoy our lecture program, enjoy the fresh salt air, and all the amenities the ship has to offer.

Day 11

UNESCO Site and Ancient History

Lima, Peru

The historic Peruvian capital was established by Spanish conquistadores in 1542, with significant churches, monasteries, and mansions constructed in that era. Today, Lima's historic center is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Join one of our excursions to enjoy the city's art museums, archaeological sites, beaches, and boardwalk, and savour the exquisite cuisine that gives Peru’s capital its unique personality. 

Day 12

The Mysterious Nazca Lines

Puerto General San Martin, Peru

Puerto General San Martin is the gateway to the famous and mysterious Nazca Lines and geoglyphs. These lines were etched into the ground between 500 B.C. and 500 A.D., and are considered among archaeology's greatest enigmas because of their quantity, nature, size and continuity. The geoglyphs are several miles long and illustrate living creatures, stylized plants and imaginary beings, as well as geometric figures. Join the excursion to truly experience these marvellous creations of the ancient world. 

Day 13-14

Deep Peace

At sea

Days at sea means you can join the Expedition Team for interesting lectures, learn the basics of expedition photography, and spend time out on deck to enjoy the fresh salt air as you scout for wildlife. Of course, there’s also plenty time to chat with fellow explorers, or just find yourself a quiet corner to enjoy the deep peace of a day at sea.

Day 15
Photo: Alessandro Caproni Photo

Pearl of the North

Antofagasta, Chile

One of the oldest and prettiest cities in Northern Chile, known as "The Pearl of the North", Antofagasta is a city of contrasts, from the driest desert to the bluest sea. 

Join one of our optional excursions to see La Portada Natural Monument, a fascinating rocky formation that resembles a white arch set in an area where strong waves crash into the cliffs, or to visit one of the small fishing towns nearby.

You may also explore the warm beaches or the town's historic monuments at your own pace. 

Day 16

Learning At Sea

At sea

We make our way south to Valparaiso, and the Expedition Team will continue their lecture program.  

Day 17

The Jewel of the Pacific

Valparaíso, Chile

Our expedition ends in the wonderful, colorful and poetic city of Valparaíso. After disembarking MS Fram, take some time to stroll the UNESCO- listed Historic Quarter, or ride a funicular to one of the hills for a city-wide panoramic view.

Arrival October 31, 2019

Location Valparaíso, Chile
What's Included


  • Hurtigruten expedition in the cabin grade of your choice on a full board basis
  • One overnight hotel stay in San José, including breakfast
  • Transfer from the hotel to the ship, including an excursion
  • Wind- and water-resistant jacket
  • Landings with small boats and activities on board and ashore
  • Professional English-speaking expedition team that gives lectures as well as accompanies landings and activities
  • Complimentary tea and coffee


  • International flights
  • Travel protection plan
  • Luggage handling
  • Optional excursions and gratuities
Your Ship Experiences

Excursions on Your Cruise

Get closer to nature and learn more about your destination with our wide range of optional excursions. They can be pre-ordered while booking your expedition cruise online, or added later if there is still availability.


Contact us

Please get in touch with our customer service team if you have questions or wish to add services like flights, transfers and land adventures to your voyage.