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World Academy Segment 1: Central America, Panama Canal & the Galápagos Islands

Program Number: 20766RJ
Start and End Dates:
1/4/2013 - 1/24/2013;
Duration: 20 nights
Location: Jamaica/Mexico/Belize/Honduras/Costa Rica/Panama/Ecuador/Colombia/Galapagos Islands
Price starting at: $7,476.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Adventure Afloat Study Cruise; Ocean Cruises
Meals: 57; 20 Breakfasts, 18 Lunches, 19 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian    

Be a part of Road Scholar World Academy on this segment of the voyage that begins in the Caribbean then brings you to Central America, through the Panama Canal and on a special three-night excursion to the Galápagos Islands.




Activity Particulars

Walking up to two miles per day. Dirt and stone paths and other uneven terrain. Stairs without railings. Hot and humid conditions.



This program is a part of Road Scholar World Academy 2013: Exploring South America (Program #20752), which begins on January 4, 2013.



Itinerary At-a-Glance

Aboard mv Voyager, 17 nights; Galápagos Islands (Ecuador), 3 nights.



Days 1-4: Arrival Montego Bay (Jamaica) / embark mv Voyager / at sea:

Learn about the flora and fauna of Jamaica and the cultivation of sugar cane, bananas and citrus fruits. Aboard the ship, begin an expert-led course on the natural history of the Caribbean and South America.



Days 5-10: Progreso (Mexico) / at sea / Belize City (Belize) / Puerto Cortés (Honduras) / at sea:

Explore the ancient Mayan city of Uxmal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site where the spectacular ruins include the Pyramid of the Magician and the Governor’s Palace. Share a traditional meal in a modern Mayan home. Search for birds, iguanas and even crocodiles among the mangroves on a boat excursion on Belize’s Haulover Creek. In Honduras, venture to the Mayan archaeological site of Copán, known for its ornate carvings and stelae.



Days 11-17: Puerto Limón (Costa Rica) / at sea / Cartagena (Colombia) / San Blas Islands (Panama) / Cristóbal / Balboa / at sea:

Learn about Costa Rica’s lovable sloths at a rainforest sanctuary. A shore excursion in Colombia brings you to the museum-house of the poet-president Rafael Núñez and Cartagena’s old town. Discover the heavenly San Blas Islands. A group of Panama’s Embera Indians welcome you to their village for a traditional meal. Experience one of history’s greatest engineering projects firsthand as you transit the Panama Canal and see the workings of the busy Gatun Locks.



Days 18-21: Manta (Ecuador) / disembark / coach to Guayaquil / flight to Galápagos Islands / departure:

Disembark for a three-night journey to the Galápagos Islands. Observe the fascinating wildlife of these islands from tortoises to crabs to lizards on boat excursions to several islands. Visit the Charles Darwin Research Station. Lodging: Four-star eco-hotel.



Voyager

Sail aboard the 540-guest Voyager, Voyages of Discovery’s newest flagship. Newly upgraded in 2012, Voyager boasts all the amenities and facilities of a large ocean liner while offering the convenience, flexibility, and intimate ambience of a small ship. It features spacious public areas, comfortable staterooms and balcony suites, a choice of open seating restaurants and al fresco dining, a variety of lounges and bars including the elegant Scott’s Lounge, a library and internet center, a swimming pool, two whirlpools, a beauty center and a gym. Voyager is your home at sea and you will be welcomed back warmly each time you return to the ship.


Meals and Lodgings
   MV Voyager
  Aboard the MV Voyager, USA 17 nights
   Grand Hotel Lobo Del Mar
  Galapagos Islands, Ecuador 3 nights
 MV Voyager
Type: Cruise Ship
  Description: Voyager, built by Spanish yard Union Navale le LeVante, is a spacious and well-appointed vessel offering 278 cabins, 86% of which are outside, 35 suites, 30 of which have balconies, open seating dining in three restaurants and the personal service and comfort levels that have been the hallmark of our cruises since 2003. Carrying just 550 passengers, Voyager has all the amenities and facilities of a larger liner while offering the convenience and flexibility of a small ship. She is able to visit and berth alongside where others have to pass by, yet is able to traverse the world's oceans with ease. On board, passengers will be able to relax in the comfortable public lounges, enjoy a drink in atmospheric Harry's Bar, in the sunshine on deck, at the Lido Bar. Alternatively, read a book in the well-stocked library.
  Ship Information: Owner / Operator: All Leisure Group Year Built: 1990 Builder: Union Navale de LeVante, Spain Former Names: Crown Monarch, Walrus, Jules Verne, Alexander von Humboldt Gross Tonnage: 15,271 Length: 152.5 meters (500.2 ft) Beam: 20.6 meters (67.6 ft) Passengers: 550 Crew: 215 Service Speed: 18.0 knots
  Contact info: Voyages of Discovery - North America
1800 S E 10th Avenue, Suite 205
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316 USA
phone: 866-623-2689
web: www.voyagesofdiscovery.com
  Facility amenities: Three restaurants with option for open dining Al-fresco dining (Veranda) Third restaurant within Discovery Restaurant (Explorer Grill) Two lounges - Atlantic Lounge and Vista Lounge Four bars (Vista Lounge, Harry's Bar, Pacific Lounge, Lido Bar) Card/Function room Medical Centre Internet Centre Two Shops Swimming pool Two whirlpools Beauty Centre Gym
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes

 Grand Hotel Lobo Del Mar
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Ship Information: N/A
  Contact info: 12 de febrero y Avenida Charles Darwin
Santa Cruz,  Galapagos Ecuador
phone: +000-000-0000
  Facility amenities: Breakfast Included, 24-Hour Hot Water, Travel Info Desk, Lounge
  Smoking allowed: Yes


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
This program begins in the afternoon of Day 1 in Montego Bay, Jamaica. Embarkation will begin at 3:00p.m. You will be staying at MV Voyager that night.
  End of Program:
This program ends in the morning in Baltra, Ecuador. You will be staying at Grand Hotel Lobo Del Mar the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. **IMPORTANT: REGISTERING FOR YOUR CRUISE ONLINE** Voyages of Discovery requires all guests to provide full passport details, including address and telephone number. They also require next of kin contact information in case of an emergency. This information must be received no later than 60 days prior to departure. Passengers must visit the website at www.voyagesofdiscovery.com - click on “Already Booked” then “Required Passenger Information” to enter your details. Furnished data will be provided to foreign government immigration officials and is required for on-board administration. PLEASE NOTE: Your cruise documents will not be issued prior to your online registration, and embarkation onto the ship may be denied. If you need assistance registering online, please contact our program department at 1.866.359.5966 and someone will assist you.
  Parking availability:
Driving is not recommended
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
To Start of Program
  Location:  Aboard the MV Voyager
  Transportation to site: The MV Voyager will be docked just outside of Montego Bay proper at the Montego Freeport Port. The port is located approximately 8 km from the airport and is a 15 minute drive. Taxis will be readily available at the airport for participants arriving independently. Embarkation will begin at 3:00pm.
  From End of Program
  Location:  Galapagos Islands
  Nearest city or town:  Puerto Ayora
  Nearest airport:  Baltra
  Transportation from site: At the end of the program, all participants will be transferred from the hotel to the airport in Baltra, in the Galapagos Islands for flights departing to the United States (All flights from the Galapagos to the United States will connect in either Guayaquil or Quito, Ecuador)
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrivals / Montego Bay, Jamaica
(Friday, January 4)
   
 Arrive To: Flights arrive in Montego Bay, Jamaica. Transfer to the MV Voyager docked at the Montego Freeport Port, located approximately 15 minutes from the airport.
 Afternoon: Embarkation will begin at 3:00 pm. Shortly after embarkation, a mandatory safety drill will be required of all ship guests. Later meet your group leader for your program orientation.
 Dinner: Welcome dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Montego Bay, Jamaica
(Saturday, January 5)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Field Trip "Montego Bay, Jamaica": Once a Spanish possession known as Santiago, in 1655 the island became an English - and later a British - colony known as "Jamaica". Jamaica achieved its full independence on August 6, 1962. With 2.8 million people, it is the third most populous anglophone country in the Americas, after the United States and Canada. This morning you will be picked up at the port for a visit to an area known as Cockpit Country. Pockmarked with steep-sided hollows, as much as 120 metres (390 ft) deep in places, which are separated by conical hills and ridges, the area provided a natural defense against Spanish and British colonists. In the historic village of Bunker Hill, you will see a traditional, working farm, and explore the flora and fauna near the river.
 Lunch: Enjoy a traditional "bush" lunch at Bunker Hill.
 Afternoon: After lunch you will make your way back to the ship, with a stop at 18th century Clarks Town
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: At Sea
(Sunday, January 6)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Lecture #1: "Plate Tectonics: Why We are Where We Are". Join your study leader for the first in your exclusive series of lectures on the Natural History of the Caribbean and South America.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: The afternoon is free to enjoy the ship's activities and amenities.
 Dinner: Captain's Welcome Cocktail Party and Dinner (formal dress required)
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: At Sea
(Monday, January 7)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Lecture #2: "Earthquakes and Volcanos of our Voyage" Join your study leader for a lecture themed on the geography and natural history of this journey.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: The afternoon is free to enjoy the ship's activities and amenities.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Progreso, Mexico
(Tuesday, January 8)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Field Trip "Merida Dzibilchaltun & Mayan Rum Tasting": Learn how rum, the traditional Xtabentun (pronounced sh-ta-ben-toon) and spirits of tropical and exotic fruits as coconut, sour SOP or maintenance have been concocted. Experience the flavor of alcoholic beverages distilled from the most important producer of the Yucatán peninsula. The House of Spirits is located in an old hacienda and has been inhabited since the 18th century. It is located on the outskirts of Mérida city and it's layout includes a courtyard with traditional Mayan plants and trees. Here you will see the stash of rum barrels, the rum production center, the traditional garden and enjoy tasting the types of alcohol produced here.
 Lunch: Visit a typical Maya house where we will meet the owners and enjoy Maya Cooking. One of the most traditional dishes in Yucatan is the "Poc Chuc" (tender slices of port marinated in sour orange juice, grilled and served with lettuce, tomato sauce, pickle onions, refried black beans and tortillas made by hand.
 Afternoon: Continue your field trip: In the Mayan city of Dzibilchaltun, explore a typical Mayan dwelling. See the Mayan pyramids and temples of Dzibilchaltun, including the Temple of the Seven Dolls. This temple is arranged in such a way that each Spring, on the day of the equinox, the rising sun shines directly through one window and out the other. Finally, visit the Xlacah cenote, a deep natural well formed by the collapse of limestone. The Xlacah cenote is believed by archaeologists to have been a holy site for a religious cult for leaving offerings.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: At Sea
(Wednesday, January 9)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Lecture #3: "The Chixulub Impact: Is this the Cause of the Extinction of Dinosaurs?". Join your study leader for an exciting morning lecture.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: The afternoon is free to enjoy the ship's activities and amenities.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Belize City, Belize
(Thursday, January 10)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Field Trip "Mangrove Tunnels": Take a leisurely cruise up Haulover Creek. The mangrove branches on either side of the creek meet high overhead to form a living tunnel. These tunnels are home to a healthy population of wildlife - be on the lookout for various bird species, iguanas and crocodiles.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Enjoy free time this afternoon to explore Belize City.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Puerto Cortes, Honduras
(Friday, January 11)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Field Trip "Ruins of the Mayan City of Copan": The majority of archeologists agree that Copan formed part of the three largest and most lavish cultural centers of the new world. Copan, considered by many one of the most spectacular cities of the ancient Mayas civilization, is situated in the southwestern part of the Mayan region. It flourished during the 7th century A.D. and at it's peak was representative of what Athens was to the old world: the cradle of its civilization. Because of it's significance to the Mayan culture, UNESCO declared Copan a world heritage site in 1980. The many different areas of Copan offer visitors a feast of Mayan artifacts to discover. The detail and sheer volume of carvings and stelae are impressive; 4,509 structures have been detected with 3,450 of the structures found within 24 sq km of the Principal Group.
 Lunch: Lunch will be served at a local restaurant in the village of Copan.
 Afternoon: If time allows, spend some free time in Copan before transferring back to the ship.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: At Sea
(Saturday, January 12)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Lecture #4: "Building the Panama Canal: The Challenges of the Land". Meet with your study leader for a lecture about the difficulties of building the Panama Canal.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: The afternoon is free to enjoy the ship's activities and amenities.
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 10: At Sea
(Sunday, January 13)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Lecture #5: "The Great American Interchange: Migration Across the Western Hemisphere". Join your study leader for a lecture themed on natural history.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: The afternoon is free to enjoy the ship's activities and amenities.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Puerto Limon, Costa Rica
(Monday, January 14)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Field Trip "Tortuguero Canals": Spend the day exploring Tortuguero National Park. On small boats, explore the interconneting maze of canals in this tranquil lagoons. Learn about this amazing ecosystem that is packed with many species of amphibians, reptiles, birds, freshwater fish and mammals.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Free time this afternoon to explore Puerto Limon
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12: At Sea
(Tuesday, January 15)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Lecture #6: "The Galapagos: Hot Spot or Not". Join your study leader for a morning lecture.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: The afternoon is free to enjoy the ship's activities and amenities.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13: Cartagena, Colombia
(Wednesday, January 16)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Field Trip "Cartagena Colombia": The day starts with a short panoramic drive from the port by private motor coach to La Popa Monastery, previously known as "stern of a galleon". This ancient Monastery located at the top of a hill and can be seen from any point in Cartagena and in turn it offers a privileged view of this incredible city. Built at the beginning of the XVIIth century, as a humble wooden chapel but later replaced by a more solid construction that was fortified two centuries later. It is still inhabited by monks, was used several times as a military fortress due to its strategic location. A chapel dedicated to virgin de La Candelaria, a patron saint of Cartagena and Colonial Museum can also be visited. Enjoy the flower filled patio and the views that stretch all over the city and wander through the cool patio and interior of the convent.You will then continue to San Felipe de Barajas Fortress, situated outside the walled city, for a photostop. This monumental fort is considered to be the most oustanding feat of Spanish military engineering in the new world. Its construction began in 1536 and lasted for 121 years. This fort is the largest Spanish fortification in the Americas and dominates the town. You then continue to the Palace of the Inquisition. The aim of the Inquisition was to judge crimes against the Catholic faith and this building is the most important example of civilian architecture in eighteenth century Cartagena. Its construction was finished in 1776. Here you will gather in the shaded courtyard of the museum for a short lecture on the history of the Spanish Iguisition in Colombia. You then continue the guided walk through San Pedro Square before rejoining the motorcoach.
 Lunch: Return to the ship for lunch
 Afternoon: Your afternoon is free to explore the city of Cartagena. In 1984, Cartagena's colonial walled city and fortress were designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.The Downtown area of Cartagena has varied architecture, mainly a colonial style, but republican and Italian style buildings, such as the Cathedral's bell tower, can be seen.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 14: San Blas Islands, Panama
(Thursday, January 17)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: This morning is free to enjoy the ship's activities and amenities. The ship is scheduled to arrive in the San Blas Islands at around noon.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Free Afternoon: Step ashore on this island paradise and enjoy the setting and welcome of the Kuna Indian people. Sands are brilliant white, seas a crystalline blue and the crafts, which the locals will no doubt invite you to examine- are every bit as spectacular. Most famous of these are the painstakingly crafted "Mola" embroideries. Other hard to resist invitations include boat rides in local dugout canoes to the neighboring isles. none is more fascinating than Nalu Nega. A hive of activity, it is wonderful to sit and watch the Indians going about their daily businesses or accept an invitation to step into their homes. They may ask for a small fee to take photographs, but barting is all part of what promises to be a memorable day.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 15: Cristobal, Panama / Panama Canal
(Friday, January 18)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on Board Ship.
 Morning: Field Trip "Discover Lake Alajuela": Boat up the Rio Charges through a fascinating and dense jungle to Lake Alajuela. Explore the the village of the Embera Indians, one of seven indigenous tribes in Panama. The people of the Emberá tribe will welcome you at the pier and bring you into their small village for a day so you can see how they still live today. The villages chief will give you a brief explication on the history of the tribe, its traditions, cultures, beliefs and handicrafts.
 Lunch: Lunch with Embera Tribe in their village
 Afternoon: In the afternoon you will experience a traditional Embera dance and have the opportunity to shop for handicrafts. The sale of local products directly benefits the village and helps to pay the school fees for the children. You can also get a temporary Embera tattoo painted on your arm or leg.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
 Evening: Full transit through the Panama Canal. One of the largest and most difficult engineering projects ever undertaken, the canal had an enormous impact on shipping between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, replacing the long and treacherous route via the Drake Passage and Cape Horn at the southernmost tip of South America. A ship sailing from New York to San Francisco via the canal travels 5,900 mi. well under half the 14,000 mi. route around Cape Horn. The concept of a canal near Panama dates to the early 16th century. The first attempt to construct a canal began in 1880 under French leadership, but was abandoned after 21,900 workers died, largely from disease (particularly malaria and yellow fever) and landslides. The United States launched a second effort, incurring a further 5,600 deaths but succeeding in opening the canal in 1914.
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 16: Balboa, Panama
(Saturday, January 19)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Field Trip "Eco-Cruise on Gatun Lake": Prior to the construction of the Panama Canal, the vast jungle area that is now Gatun Lake was teeming with an overwhelming abundance of wildlife. As the region was flooded to create the lake, animals took refuge in the mountain peaks, which are now the many islands that dot the lake. With expert guides you'll cruise slowly through the back channels, islands and bays thatmake up this unique ecosystem. Glide past lush rainforests to a secluded region of the lake and witness firsthand the splendor and excitement of the jungle. Exotic birds, monkeys, sloths, iguanas and crocodiles are just a few of the animals that you might see in their native surroundings. The sights, sounds and scents that make up this beautiful, tropical jungle will engulf you. A stop at Gatun Locks, the largest and most important of the 3 sets of locks at the Panama Canal will complete the day.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Your afternoon is free to enjoy the amenities and activities on board the ship
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 17: At Sea
(Sunday, January 20)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Lecture #7: "Natural History of the Caribbean and South America". Enjoy a morning lecture with your study leader.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Afternoon is free to enjoy the amenities and activities on board the ship
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: MV Voyager
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 18: Manta, Ecuador / Disembark / Fly to Galapagos Islands
(Monday, January 21)

Note: You will need to pack a small overnight bag for this extended field trip. Please note that porterage may not be available, and you will need to manage your own luggage.



   
 Breakfast: Early breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: This morning you will disembark the ship on an extended 3 night field trip to the Galapagos Islands. Disembark the ship and transfer to the Manta Airport. Fly from Manta to the Galapagos Islands (via Quito)
 Lunch: A light lunch will be served in flight
 Afternoon: Field Trip "Charles Darwin Research Center": Arrive to Baltra Island where you will meet your local naturalist. Transfer through the highlands of Santa Cruz Island to the town of Puerto Ayora. With just over 10,000 inhabitants, Puerto Ayora is the most populous settlement in the Galapagos and home to the Charles Darwin Research Center where Ecuadorian and foreign scientists work constantly on research and projects for conservation of the Galapagos terrestrial and marine ecosystems. Visit the Research Center to see their latest work.
 Dinner: Dinner at the hotel or a local restaurant.
   
Accommodations: Grand Hotel Lobo Del Mar
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 19: Galapagos Islands
(Tuesday, January 22)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel
 Morning: Field Trip "North Seymour Island": Set out this morning on a full day yacht excursion to North Seymour Island where you will have the opportunity to observe the unique and fascinating wildlife of the Galapagos Islands.
 Lunch: Lunch will be served on board the yacht.
 Afternoon: Continue exploring the Galapagos Islands by yacht.
 Dinner: Dinner at the hotel
   
Accommodations: Grand Hotel Lobo Del Mar
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 20: Galapagos Islands
(Wednesday, January 23)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel
 Morning: Field Trip "Floreana Island": Set out this morning on a full day yacht excursion to Floreana Island where you will continue to see the unique wildlife of the Galapagos Islands.
 Lunch: Lunch at the hotel or a local restaurant
 Afternoon: Continue your exploration of Floreana Island.
 Dinner: Dinner at the hotel
   
Accommodations: Grand Hotel Lobo Del Mar
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 21: Depart for flight home to U.S.
(Thursday, January 24)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel
 Morning: Check out of the hotel this morning and transfer to airport to depart home for the U.S.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


Costa Rica, A Traveler's Literary Companion


Author: Barbara Ras


Description: 26 well-chosen stories by Costa Rican writers introduce the people, culture and land.



Costa Rican Wildlife


Author: Pocket Naturalist


Description: Put it in your pocket! This handy, fold-up card includes color illustrations of dozens of typical birds, mammals and reptiles. We also carry plastic cards for Costa Rica Birds (Item CRC56) and Costa Rica Butterflies & Moths (Item CRC57), $5.95 each.



Galapagos Wildlife


Author: Pocket Naturalist


Description: This fold-up, laminated card guide, with color drawings, will appeal to the whole family.



Galapagos Wildlife, A Visitor's Guide


Author: David Horwell, Pete Oxford


Description: With chapters on visitor sites, history, conservation and habitats, this compact photographic guide introduces birds, reptiles, marine and other life of the archipelago.



Galapagos, A Natural History


Author: Michael Jackson


Description: This comprehensive guide to the natural history of the Galapagos is practically mandatory reading, the single best introduction to the geology and climate, habitats, plants, birds, animals, ecology and evolution.



Galapagos, A Novel


Author: Kurt Vonnegut


Description: In this madcap classic Vonnegut looks back from a future where the human race has been wiped out - all except for a small group stranded in the Galapagos on the Nature Cruise of the Century.



Galapagos, Discovery on Darwin's Islands


Author: David Steadman


Description: All the birds, mammals, reptiles and other vertebrates of the Galapagos are beautifully illustrated in this insightful overview, offered as a bonus book in the Galapagos Essential Reading package for just $1.00!.



Galapagos, World's End


Author: William Beebe


Description: This wry, wonderfully evocative account of a 1924 scientific expedition includes an excellent chapter on the human history of the Galapagos.



Insight Guide Ecuador and Galapagos


Author: Insight Guides


Description: Presenting the natural history, politics, culture, wildlife and attractions of Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands with style and authority. Contributors include Tui de Roy (Galapagos photography), Lynn Meisch (arts, crafts and customs) and Rob Rachoweicki (Oriente/Amazon).



Liberators, Latin America's Struggle for Independence 1810-1830


Author: Robert Harvey


Description: Focused on the heroism and derring-do of seven legendary men, Harvey tells the story of Simon Bolivar, General Jose de San Martin and other greats in the fight for independence.



Love in the Time of Cholera


Author: Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Edith Grossman (Translator)


Description: A glorious tale of great love consummated after 50 years, nine months and four days, memorably set in a dusty 19th-century town on the Caribbean coast of Colombia.



Maya Art and Architecture


Author: Mary Ellen Miller


Description: An illustrated overview of the art and architecture of the Maya, making use of the latest discoveries at Tikal, Copan and Palenque to demonstrate the range of Maya artistic influence. With 200 illustrations, 50 in color, including site plans, maps, strikingly rendered reconstructions and color photographs of key temples and buildings.



Popol Vuh, The Mayan Book of the Dawn of Life


Author: Dennis Tedlock (Editor)


Description: The definitive, unabridged collection of creation myths and stories of the Quiche people, fundamental to understanding the worldview of the highland Maya.



The Beak of the Finch


Author: Jonathan Weiner


Description: This Pulitzer Prize-winning work is an accessible look at the modern debate on the mode and rhythm of evolution, using the story of Peter and Rosemary Grant and their field work on Daphne Major as an example.



The Conquistadors, A Very Short Introduction


Author: Felipe Fernandez-Armesto, Matthew Restall


Description: This provocative book by two leading historians explores who the conquistadors were and what made their adventures possible.



The Maya


Author: Michael Coe


Description: The eighth edition of Coe's clear, concise and authoritative, illustrated survey of the Maya.



The Monkey's Bridge, Mysteries of Evolution in Central America


Author: David Rains Wallace


Description: Opening this absorbing account of the history and biogeography of the Central American isthmus with the tale of Columbus, Wallace then weaves his own travels in the region with a crisp overview of exploration, nature and evolution. Natural history buffs and ecologically minded travelers will appreciate this valuable resource.



The Panama Hat Trail


Author: Tom Miller


Description: An entertaining and insightful social history of Ecuador -- as told through its hat-making history. It's a classic example of travel writing, and one of the best things written on Ecuador.



The Path Between the Seas, The Creation of the Panama Canal: 1870-1914


Author: David McCullough


Description: Admirably told in vivid, page-turning detail. McCullough reveals the full scope of the Panama Canal, its characters, technical difficulties and Byzantine politics.



The Wildlife of Costa Rica, A Field Guide


Author: Zona Tropical Publications


Description: 450 of the most common, interesting and charismatic mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and arthropods that you are likely to encounter. Each has exquisite full color illustrations by Fiona Reid (mammals), Robert Dean (birds) and friends.



Time Among the Maya, Travels in Belize, Guatemala, and Mexico


Author: Ronald Wright


Description: Wright combines journalism, archaeology and an ear for dialogue in this engaging account of travels among the contemporary Maya.



Tropical Nature


Author: Adrian Forsyth, Ken Miyata


Description: A lucid portrait of the tropics as seen by two uncommonly observant and thoughtful field biologists. Its 17 marvelous essays introduce the habitats, ecology, plants and animals of the Central and South American rainforest.



Voyage of the Beagle


Author: Charles Darwin


Description: The wide-eyed tale of a young man on a five-year voyage that changed his life -- and our way of thinking about the world. First published in 1839, it's still a marvelous introduction to the wildlife, nature and allure of South America.





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