7 Night Cruise with 3 Nights Medellín Pre-Cruise & 3 Nights Panama City Post-Cruise
Prices from $9,241 CAD per person based on double occupancy
International Airfare Additional
On our river cruises, you will enjoy an extensive lineup of included tours. In many cases, you will have a choice of excursions, such as standard tours, bike tours, hikes and Special Interest Tours. We always include a large variety of activities so that you can choose how you want to explore. No matter your preference, your days will be full of discovery and wonder.
Your Ship: AmaMagdalena
Arrive in the city of Medellín, the second largest city in Colombia. Named the most innovative city in the world by the Urban Land Institute in 2013, this fascinating city combines modern conveniences with colonial history. Check into your hotel and enjoy your first night in this unique city.
The region’s ideal climate and soil conditions, combined with the skill and passion of local farmers, make for a unique and delicious coffee experience, which you can learn about and enjoy for yourself during a guided excursion. Before the majority of coffee farms moved south, the state of Antioquia was where coffee growth in Colombia first begin, planting the seed of tradition and culture strongly in this region. The coffee beans grown in Medellín are known for their rich and complex flavor profiles, with notes of dark chocolate, caramel, and berries. This delightful coffee is also certified by organizations such as the Rainforest Alliance, which ensures that the coffee is grown in a sustainable and environmentally friendly way. On your way back, ride a cable back into Medellín, taking in picturesque views of the city you will explore more closely tomorrow. (B, L)
Though the city was once known for violent campaigns, Medellín has undergone impressive social transformations, and you will get to examine the drastic differences as you tour Comuna 13. This neighborhood was once the center of political corruption’s influence on the city, and it has now been elevated to a place of strengthened community, music, and art. Glide through the city on outdoor electric escalators, a primary method of transport for locals, as you witness how Medellín has grown. (B)
Fly to the beautiful city of Barranquilla and settle into your stateroom as you prepare for your journey along the Magdalena River. In the evening, enjoy a special Carnaval celebration, bringing the full traditional experience exclusively to AmaWaterways’ guests all-year round. Widely considered one of Colombia’s most important folkloric celebrations, the Carnaval of Barranquilla has also been declared a UNESCO Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity, and you will get to revel in this truly authentic experience as you learn the Carnaval’s motto: Quien lo vive, es quien lo goza (Those who live it are those who enjoy it).
Visit the Floating Village of Nueva Venecia. A charming town filled with inviting locals, Nueva Venecia, or “New Venice,” can only be navigated by boat. With its beautiful colonial houses, vivid architecture and local sanctuary protecting the native flora and fauna, this town highlights the beauty and warmth of Colombia. While here, explore this village and learn more about the lives of its people during a guided tour. Enjoy the traditional crafts and art that is on display, learn about the techniques the fishermen of Nueva Venecia use, and taste the local delicacies as you embrace this village and its unique culture.
Spend your morning in Santa Barbara de Pinto, located on the banks of the Mompox arm of the Magdalena River. Enjoy a walking tour through this traditional town, where you may see local landmarks such as the Santa Barbara Church and enjoy intricate hand-made crafts created in the town. In the afternoon, arrive at the island town of Mompox, where you will be welcomed with open arms and lively music as local musicians treat you to an exclusive jazz performance.
A town frozen in time, Mompox embodies the appearance of what many villages looked like during colonial times. Founded in 1540, this remote village became an important Spanish trading post. Some Spaniards found Mompox to be a haven for keeping gold and other treasure protected from the pirates that pillaged coastal cities like Cartagena, and with this precious metal and the work of skilled artisans from Spain came beautifully crafted artifacts. Since then, the town has become famous for its incredible filigree jewelry, which you can learn more about during your tour of this town in the afternoon. While visiting the largest inland island in Latin America, journey through the incredible ecological Ciénaga Pijiño region, exploring the massive lake that is home to a variety of flora and fauna native to the region. In the evening, take a stroll through this storied town on a guided walking tour. With stunning colonial churches, breathtaking nature surrounding the town, and delicious local delights such as capa cheese and butifarra, Mompox is sure to be a highlight of your journey along the magnificent Magdalena River.
Bid farewell to Mompox before embarking on a scenic cruise down one of the most breathtaking stretches of the Magdalena River – a picturesque part of the La Mojana Region – and reaching the town of El Banco, nestled at the intersection of the Magdalena and César rivers. Founded in a location strategic for both the native people and the Spaniards, the town was repeatedly destroyed in their struggles and then rebuilt atop its ashes. In 1749, a freed black slave named José Domingo Ortiz led a group of settlers to this special location, carrying with him a statue of the Virgin Mary, staking this place as their new home. Because of this connection, the Virgin of Candelaria, a special invocation of the Virgin Mary, is specially venerated in this region. Embark on a guided walking tour of this incredible destination and learn more about its history as the birthplace of cumbia, an iconic genre of music and dance that has now been popularized around the world. What began as a courtship dance practiced by African slaves later incorporated American steps and European and African instruments has become a world-wide sensation, which is especially popular in the Andean region of Colombia. In the evening, enjoy an exclusive dinner in town and witness an incredible cumbia performance by locals.
Witness the sights, hear the bird calls, and watch the wildlife around you as we spend the beginning of the day docked near Magangue. Immerse yourself in the presence of Colombian nature surrounding this city on a birdwatching tour, giving you a unique opportunity to see birds only found in this specific part of the country. You can also take a hiking tour through the picturesque Ciénaga, teeming with Colombian life. Later in the day, visit Calamar. Located at the entrance of the Canal del Dique, this town was first settled in 1840. Witness historic sites such as the Iglesia de la Inmaculada Conception as you tour this beautiful destination by paola (a bicycle taxi for two).
Take the day to delight in the beautiful coastal city of Cartagena. Many Spaniards flocked to this location when they heard tales of gold found in the tombs of indigenous leaders, expanding this small port into a thriving city. Start your day by exploring the incredible UNESCO-designated San Felipe Castle, the fortress that defended Cartagena from French and British attacks. As you continue to tour the city, you may witness iconic landmarks such as the Cathedral de Cartagena or the stone walls built to protect the city from the plundering of pirates, although they did not stop Sir Francis Drake from holding the city for ransom in 1586. Delve deeper into the enriching history of this Caribbean city as you briefly visit the Gold Museum, which features ancient gold artifacts from the indigenous cultures found in this region, and the Caribbean Naval Museum. In the afternoon, enjoy a tour through the breathtaking Getsemaní neighborhood. With the vibrant colors of the homes and street art as well as the mouthwatering local delicacies that can be found throughout the area, this historic neighborhood will delight all your senses. In the evening, watch the sun set on Cartagena from the deck of your stunning AmaWaterways ship.
Disembark your ship and fly to Panama City, famous for the canal that separates North and South America. Start your Panama journey in Panama Casco Viejo, the site of the original Panama City. Located in the middle of skyscrapers, this charming UNESCO World Heritage Site still conserves its initial mystical flavor Casco Viejo preserves the first institutions and buildings that laid the foundation for the Panama that we know today. Explore the city walls that were built to protect the city from pirate attacks. Walk through Plaza de Francia, a beautiful public square that pays homage to France’s role in building the iconic Panama Canal, and Plaza Carlos V, named for the most powerful monarch in Europe during the 16th century. Take in the stunning la compañia architecture prominent in this historic area of the city, showcased in breathtaking buildings such as the Catedral Basílica Santa María la Antigua de Panamá. Immerse yourself in the vivid colors of Casco Viejo as you make your way to your hotel, where you will be staying during your time in this incredible city. (B)
Take in the man-made majesty of the Panama Canal during this full day of incredible excursions. Before this marvel of engineering was constructed, ships were forced to sail to the southernmost tip of South America along the Drake Passage or the Strait of Magellan. Once the Panama Canal was opened in 1914 after over 30 years of construction directed by multiple countries, international trade changed forever. Visit the building where the chief engineer, George W. Goethals, centralized the canal’s administrative activities before embarking along this legendary canal for yourself. Journey along the Panama Canal as you witness the breathtaking Gatun Lake. Known as the largest artificial lake in the world, this body of water is surrounded by the beauty of petrified trees frozen in time, tropical rainforest, and the unique flora and fauna found along its banks. Enjoy a delicious lunch at the Gamboa Rainforest Resort and discover more about the history, biodiversity and operation of the Panama Canal during a private tour of the Miraflores Locks and Visitor Center. (B, L)
Be dazzled by a breathtaking rainforest near Chagres National Park, taking in the amazing scenery that surrounds you. Navigate Gatun Lake through this magical jungle before continuing to an Emberá village. The Emberá are a riverine people of Panama, historically building their houses along banks of rivers. These people came from another location when Gatun Lake was created, finding a new home next to this bridge of water. Savor a traditional Emberá tasting experience that is sure to delight your taste buds. Immerse yourself in the ritual dances, local music, handcrafts and more as you experience and embrace this unique culture. (B, L)
Bid Panama farewell and prepare for your flight home. (B)