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Road Scholar World Academy: Sailing the Southern Route

On a 131-day circumnavigation, sail to South America, Polynesia, Australia, New Zealand, Africa and the Caribbean to study the fascinating history each country has to offer.
Rating (5)
Program No. 23460RJ
97 days
Starts at

Road Scholar World Academy: Sailing the Southern Route

On a 131-day circumnavigation, sail to South America, Polynesia, Australia, New Zealand, Africa and the Caribbean to study the fascinating history each country has to offer.
97 days
Starts at
Program No. 23460 RJ
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At a Glance

Become a true world explorer in just a few months as you sail around the world to over 30 countries, meeting locals in every destination and learning from our expert locals. Begin and end your voyage in Fort Lauderdale, Florida as you circumnavigate the globe and discover incredible hidden treasures and iconic landmarks on five continents. Spend your time at sea learning from expert instructors during exclusive lectures before stepping on shore to immerse yourself in the history of each port. Aboard the MS Amsterdam, you’ll experience the very best of South America, Polynesia, Australia, New Zealand, Africa and the Caribbean creating a truly once-in-a-lifetime adventure.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Learn the legends behind Easter Island’s moai statues as you explore the UNESCO World Heritage Site with an expert instructor.
  • Experience Christ the Redeemer – one of the New Seven Wonders of the World – on an exciting excursion to Rio de Janeiro.
  • Explore Table Mountain and learn about the local wildlife on field trips to three South African cities: Richards Bay, Durban and Cape Town.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
A Neotropical Companion
by J.C. Kricher, Mark Plotkin
From plants and animals to birds and bugs, it's all here in this wonderfully written overview of the ecology, habitats, plants and animals of Central and South America.
Lake District, Araucania: Argentina & Chile
by Zagier & Urruty Maps
This regional map (1:400,00) covers the mid-section of Chile and Argentina from Bariloche across to Puerto Montt and Temuco.
Culture Smart! Argentina
by Robert Hamwee
A concise, well-illustrated and practical guide to local customs, etiquette and culture.
Argentina, A Traveler's Literary Companion
by Jill Gibian
These choice stories introduce the landscapes and culture of Argentina, from the Andes to the Pampas, through the eyes of its writers.
Argentine Fight for the Falklands
by Martin Middlebrook
Unprecedented second and third hand accounts of the story of the Falklands War from the perspective of Argentinians involved in the conflict. The story is told by Middlebrook, a Englishman, who took accounts from a captain, a general, a marine commander, and many others sent to occupy and defend the islands.
The Guru'Guay Guide to Montevideo
by Karen A Higgs
A comprehensive guide to the city of Montevideo and the country of Uruguay as a whole, The Guru'Guay Guide to Montevideo, unlike other books written about Uruguay, is written by a long-term resident, not a visitor. Higgs was born in the UK and has lived in the country since 2000.
Estancias: The Great Houses and Ranches of Argentina
by Xavier Verstraeten (Photographer)
Two dozen magnificent country estates are detailed in this sumptuously illustrated volume, featuring 200 color photographs and a cultural and social history by Maria Saenz Quesada.
Guerrillas and Generals: The "Dirty War" in Argentina
by Paul H. Lewis
A comprehensive look of the "Dirty Wars" throughout the 20th century, Guerrillas and Generals takes readers through various conflicts within Argentina which help define the nation today. Militia revolts and abysmal human rights conditions set the stage for what would become the polarization of Argentine society.
Empire's Crossroads: A History of the Caribbean from Columbus to the Present Day
by Carrie Gibson
Gibson tells the history of the Caribbean nations from the fateful day in 1492 until the culmination of colonialism centuries later. The fight for territory, the control of exports, exploitation of slaves, and mixing of cultures are some of the many topics talked about in this colonial epoch.
Sleepwalking Land
by David Brookshaw (Translator), Mia Couto
Written by a native Mozambican in Portuguese, this highly-acclaimed novel of turmoil and civil war is rich with magical realism.
Easter Island
by Jennifer Vanderbes
In this mesmerizing novel, Vanderbes spins parallel stories of two young women on Easter Island, one an archaeologist with a 1913 expedition and the other an American botanist who visits 60 years later.
Buenos Aires, A Cultural History
by Jason Wilson
An exhilarating, erudite guide to Buenos Aires as it has been portrayed by writers, poets and thinkers; serves well as a guidebook, too, with a street map and detailed neighborhood descriptions.
Chasing Kangaroos
by Tim Flannery
In this ode to the kangaroo, Flannery weaves his own coming of age as a scientist with tales of the strange marsupial, past and present.
by Simon Winchester
Subtitled "Silicon Chips and Surfboards, Coral Reefs and Atom Bombs, Brutal Dictators, Fading Empires, and the Coming Collision," Winchester's far-reaching history explores humanity’s relationship with the world’s largest body of water, the source of both great opportunity and terrifying natural disaster.
30 Days in Sydney, A Wildly Distorted Account
by Peter Carey
An impressionistic account of Carey's native city, the result of his return visit (with a tape recorder) after an absence of 17 years.
Lonely Planet Tahiti and French Polynesia
by Tony Wheeler, Jean-Bernard Carillet
This practical guide to Tahiti and French Polynesia includes a good overview of history, culture and nature and helpful travel details for your journey.
A Traveller's History of New Zealand and the South Pacific Islands
by John Chambers
A brisk portrait of New Zealand and its culture, economy and society, this concise history also covers the settlement of the Pacific Islands.
1912, The Year the World Discovered Antarctica
by Chris Turney
Turney looks at the great leap forward in Antarctic science that was made 100 years ago with the expeditions of not just Scott and Amundsen but also those of Mawson, Filchner and Shirase. A brisk and engaging history of science and exploration in the Antarctic. An Australian scientist himself, Turney sees Mawson as the scientific hero of the age.
Pacific Journeys
by Peter Hendrie
A striking portfolio of 330 color photographs of the people, nature and landscape of the region, Hendrie's gorgeous book includes images from his many journeys to Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, to Tahiti and the Marquesas, Tonga, Fiji, Easter Island and Hawaii over the last 20 years.
The Singapore Grip
by JG Farrell
One of a trio of remarkable historical novels by J.G. Farrell, its centerpiece is the Japanese invasion of British-ruled Singapore. Ranging all over the colony from the slums to posh clubs and cricket fields, it's an evocative portrait of the colonial city in peace and war.
What the Buddha Taught
by Walpola Sri Rahula
A classic introduction to Buddhism by a respected monk and scholar from Sri Lanka. Provides translations from original texts with explanations for Western readers. A good foundation for anyone interested in understanding the foundations of Buddhism.
Tropical Nature
by Adrian Forsyth, Ken Miyata
Two uncommonly observant and thoughtful field biologists offer a lucid portrait of the tropics through 17 marvelous essays that introduce the habitats, ecology, plants and animals of the Central and South American rainforests.
The Brazilians
by Joseph Page
A clear, comprehensive and compelling introduction to Brazil, covering politics, history, economics, ecology, conservation and culture.
West with the Night
by Beryl Markham
Beryl Markham evokes the landscapes, people and wildlife of East Africa in engrossing detail in this classic memoir of amazing adventures as a bush pilot in 1930s Kenya, a favorite.
Forgotten Continent
by Michael Reid
Economist editor Reid draws on his years in the cities, presidential palaces and shantytowns of Central and South America in this portrait of a region rich in oil, farmland and culture, with consideration on its prospects in the face of globalization.
Travels in a Thin Country, A Journey through Chile
by Sarah Wheeler
British author Sara Wheeler deploys her wit, intelligence and powerful investigative skills on the Republic of Chile in this insightful travelogue.
African Heroes, Samburu-maasai
by Matteo Guzzini
Guzzini captures the rituals and travels of the mysterious Masaai communities of Tanzania and Kenya in beautiful, untouched photographs that honor the people and their land.
South Africa, A Traveler's Literary Companion
by by Isabel Balseiro (Editor), Tobias Hecht (Editor)
This diverse collection of short stories reveals South Africa through the eyes of its writers, including Nadine Gordimer, J.M. Coetzee and Alan Paton.
Indonesia, Etc., Exploring the Improbable Nation
by Elizabeth Pisani
Though she traveled 26,000 miles around the 13,500 islands that comprise Indonesia, journalist Pisani goes far beyond the numbers to explore what holds the impossibly disparate nation together. Along her journey, she debates corruption and cannibalism, navigates impossibly strange traditions and sleeps in a volcano.
The Healing Land, The Bushmen and the Kalahari Desert
by Rupert Isaacson
A powerful account of the ancient traditions of the Kalahari Bushmen and the very contemporary struggle of a people who have been displaced from their land.
All Good Things, From Paris to Tahiti
by Sarah Turnbull
Her French husband posted to French Polynesia, the chipper Australian Turnbull, said husband and West Highland Terrier, Maddie, decamp from Paris to Moorea in this endearing memoir, which is about, among many things, her newborn son.
Divided Borders: Essays of Puerto Rican identity
by Juan Flores
Juan Flores dissects in greater detail the Puerto Rican struggle to define and maintain indigenous identities as the island becomes more homogeneous. Flores also wrote From Bomba to Hip-Hop, a wide-ranging series of essays.
The Bone People
by Keri Hulme
Set on the South Island, this powerful novel brings together three troubled individuals who represent Maori and European traditions in contemporary New Zealand.
The Happy Isles of Oceania
by Paul Theroux
The peripatetic author flies off to Australia and New Zealand with a kayak and ends up exploring much of Melanesia and Polynesia, including Tonga, Fiji and the Marquesas, in this wickedly funny, wide-ranging tale.
Island of Bali
by Miguel Covarrubias, Adrian Vickers (Introduction)
First published in 1937, this classic portrait of Bali captures the life, traditional culture and customs of the Balinese people.
Endurance, Shackleton's Incredible Voyage
by Alfred Lansing
Lansing's gripping day-by-day story of Shackleton's legendary perseverance is essential reading for any Antarctic traveler.
Running in the Family
by Michael Ondaatje
Award-winning author Ondaatje returns to his native Sri Lanka in this hypnotic travelogue. His lovingly traced family memoirs are interspersed with poetry and ruminations on the island's post-colonial history.
Tales of the South Pacific
by James Michener
The first of the big Michener novels, set in World War II Polynesia. It's great fun, and the basis for the Rogers & Hammerstein musical "South Pacific."
The Fatal Shore
by Robert Hughes
In this celebrated social history, both scholarly and entertaining, Hughes traces the fate of those who were transported to the penal colonies of Australia between 1787 and 1868. It's an engaging popular account, drawn from the experiences of the colonists themselves.
Africa, a Biography of the Continent
by John Reader
With the ease of a practiced journalist, Reader weaves a masterful and lively tale of the continent, from ancient cultures to modern times. Both authoritative and informal, this is a splendid introduction to all of Africa.
Long Walk to Freedom
by Nelson Mandela
An unpretentious tale of an extraordinary life, Mandela's autobiography is essential reading for an understanding of South Africa. His grace and his love for his country shine throughout.
Asia's Cauldron, The South China Sea and the End of a Stable Pacific
by Robert D. Kaplan
Vividly analyzing the nations where the Western Pacific meets the Indian Ocean, Robert Kaplan explains why this area of the world is an important and turbulent region that we should all be watching.
My Traitor's Heart
by Rian Malan
Afrikaner journalist Malan recounts his journey back to his homeland just before the collapse of apartheid. He grapples with the black and white heart of South Africa, drawing on the 300-year history of his family in Africa and legends of the Zulu nation, in this beautifully written and brutally honest story of return.
Insight Guide Chile
by Insight Guides
This glossy guide provides a full-color introduction by a team of experts to the land, people, history and attractions of Chile. Brief background essays highlight important topics. With many local and regional maps.
Bradt Guide Madagascar
by Hilary Bradt
Now in its 12th edition, Bradt's comprehensive guide to Madagascar, its history, people and nature remains our model for guidebooks: personal, culturally astute and an absolute pleasure to read. With photographs, sketch maps and wise travel information.
Come on Shore and We Will Kill and Eat You All
by Christina Thompson
Historian Thompson effortlessly alternates tales of mostly disastrous early encounters with the native New Zealanders (Maori) and the story of the love of her life, Seven, the Maori man she married, in this endearing memoir.

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