That moment you realize, the world is yours…cruising has something for everyone!
Exploring new sights, sampling new food, trying new activities, a chance to unwind and create precious memories with our loved ones…oh Cruise Travel, how much we’ve missed you !
Welcome on board, welcome at our home at sea!
Forget, for a moment, all about ships and sea. Step with us on board one of the Seabourn fleet and you’ll be checking in into one of the finest boutique hotels that just happens to take you from place to place.
With all ocean-front suites, nearly one team member for every guest, and ships carrying just 264-600 guests, the Seabourn company intend to make every moment of your voyage, a SEABOURN moment!
For our first ‘back to cruise’ vacay with Seabourn, we have chosen the Central American itinerary from Miami to the Panama canal and back to Miami, visiting 7 different countries like Mexico, Belize, Colombia, Costa Rica, Panama and Guatemala.
A Seabourn voyage isn’t just about going somewhere. It’s about being moved. Deeply. Joyfully.
Let us inspire you with our Seabourn travel journal, day by day : read, watch and be moved!
The OVATION ship @Seabourn
Our journey starts in Brussels airport the 24th of February ’22 where we took an early morning flight to Lisbon (@tapairportugal) -after a two hour transit in Lisbon we took the transatlantic flight with TAPPortugal to Miami. Due to the worldwide covid health rules we had to take care of some administrative precautions before check in : the online PLF for Portugal, a 48h old negative PCR test and next to the normal ETA procedures we also had to fill in a health form to enter the United states.
As it was our second time in Miami (we did another Caribbean cruise in december 2018 with the Seabourn Odyssey) we have chosen to book the Epic Kimpton hotel in Dowtown area of Miami and not like 4 years ago at Miami beach. First (not so good) impression of the hotel : big, impersonal service, very noisy and very expensive.
With über taxi’s we went several times to the Miami beach area, were we could lunch twice at our favorite place ‘the Betsy hotel’. We rented a bike and cycled easily around the beach side watching the ocean.
We booked our tour already at home through the website VIATOR – as promised they picked us up at the hotel early in the morning and brought us to the National park
A half-day tour exploring the Everglades National Park with a naturalist guide, including an airboat ride and a nature walk, it was so nice to be out of busy Miami. Learning about the area ecosystems and spotting alligators and local birdlife. On a smaller air boat, we travelled way out far from land and become immersed in the culture and remote beauty of the Native way of life, including a stop to a Miccosuke island village.
Miami design district
Last time we didn’t had the chance to visit the Design district, so this was also on my to do wishlist when in Miami. All big designer label have their stores there, but some were so busy we had more than one hour waiting to enter. Even the Dior café was overbooked. So we ended back after one hour strolling already in our uber back to the hotel.
Embarkation day in Port of Miami , Sunday 27th of February ’22.
After a last health check up and a another negative PCR test we could finally start our cruise. Our stay on the Ovation was in a sumptuous veranda suite, which came with a hotel-style bathroom complete with Seabourn’s exclusive Molton brown toiletries. Our balcony suite was on deck 7 (763) in the middle of the ship, which is next to the gangway, an easy access to the other decks of the ship.
As the ship was sailing away at 7pm we had plenty of time to unpack and explore all area’s of the ship with the most stunning views over Miami.
watch the video of the embarkation – click on link here below:
SEADAYS (part 1)
This trip had in total 6 seadays (days when the ship is sailing the whole day/night to his next stop). We personally like those seadays, nothing to do, just enjoying the fullest our day at sea. Time to relax at one of the pool area’s, to read, do some workout or yoga at the fitness, enjoying a Spa treatment, or listening to one of the lectures given by experts about our next ports of call. While the ship is setting his course, we have the whole day the best ocean view and time to emerge all the blues.
Sea days can be both relaxing, especially if warm enough for loafing on deck or beside the pool, or active there are a full schedule of activities to fill the time. To know what to do that day we read the Herald, our daily agenda / newspaper of the ship where all activities and events for that day are scheduled.
If you want to relax even more you can stay at The retreat. It is ringed with 15 private cabanas designed as individual luxury living rooms that each feature a large HD flat screen television and refrigerator stocked with a personalized selection of beverages. A tranquil setting on the highest deck 12 housed in a distinctive flower-shaped canopy that shield guests from sun and wind.
watch the short video about our day at the retreat here :https://www.instagram.com/reel/CbDLFmZAGIq/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
1st March ’22
The island of Cozumel is encircled by the azure waters of the Caribbean Sea, making it an idyllic place where you can get inspired to conserve the ocean and its inhabitants. The ship was docked in the port of Puerta Maya, next to many other cruise ships. The port village had different little souvenir shops with typical local craftsmanship’s.
For our first excursion we selected the half day excursion ‘swim with dolphins’ downtown Cozumel, just a 10minutes drive from the port with a private coach. At the ‘Blu Dolphinarium’ we learned about, interact and swom with the dolphins. It was a great ‘once in a life time’ experience.
Swimming with the Dolphins
Later that day, at 6pm our ship left the port of Cozumel on his way to Belize. At the poolside we enjoyed a Mexican sailaway party with refreshing Margaritas and live Latin sounds.
Cruise director Ross , assistant cruise director Ryan and Bar manager Sean
2nd of March ’22
Belize City is the largest city in Belize and was once the capital of the former British Honduras. Our cruise ship dropped anchor outside the port and we were tendered by local citizens to the city. From the port we took another watertaxi of one hour to Caye Caulker island on the Barrier reef. The weather on Belize had been riddled with rain showers that day, but that didn’t take away from the vibrancy and charm of the island.
Spanning over 180 miles (300 kilometers), the Belize Barrier Reef is one of the largest in the world, second only to the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Australia. This means that there is a wide variety of sea life and corals that help keep the diverse ecosystem intact.
We had a pretty Belizable time on our guided tour at the Barrier Reef snorkeling with the rays, sharks, Nemo fish, tarpon and literally hundreds of other fish!
SAN ANDRES, Colombia
4th of March’22
San Andres is a coral island in the Caribbean sea, politically part of Colombia and historically tied to the United Kingdom. Along the 30km road that circles the island there’re many picturesque beaches, coral reefs and coves.
As our snorkeling trip was cancelled we changed plans and booked the Coco Plum beach resort instead. A whole day at the beach enjoying the turquoise blue water while having lunch under a palmtree.
COSTA RICA, Puerto Limón
5th of March’22
Puerto Limón is the port in Costa Rica where we were docked. We did a half day excursion organized by Seabourn to the Tortuguero Canals.
Tortuguero is undoubtedly a magical place for bird watching, since you can find more than 400 different species. It is also a unique place to enjoy an exceptional experience immersed in nature
The Tortuguero Canals are an extensive system of natural and man-made waterways used both for transportation and jungle exploration. Traveling through the canals is an incredible and enriching adventure – the scenic boat rides along the canals offer a startling variety of wildlife species. There are knowledgeable naturalist guides available to point out and explain the various species of plant and animal life.
BOCA DEL TORO, Panama
6th of March ’22
A Caribbean archipelago lying just off the coast of Panama, Boca del Toro was once a centre of mana production. Today it has become one of the most popular ecotourism destinations in Panama. More than 70 islands (only 9 are inhabited) and numerous mangrove cays.
As there were no excursions organized by Seabourn that day, we just went by tender to the town Boca del Toro (the ship was not docked here). At the pier we could find several local excursion possibilities.
Playa Estrella or RED starfish island is found on the northwestern coast of Isla Colón, the main island of the Bocas del Toro archipelago. From Bocas Town, the most scenic way to go to Playa Estrella is by local water taxi.
Later that day when everyone was onboard again around 5pm, the Ovation sailed away from Boca del Toro to our next destination, Colon & Panama Canal. It was a magical sunset again that evening as we sailed away : we enjoyed with friends a typical Seabourn event, Caviar with bubbles or cocktails served at the poolside on deck 9 and get to listen to the Seabourn singers who song arias from musical theatre and classical repertoire.
PANAMA canal & Gatun lake
7th of March ’22
The Panama canal, one of the world’s most famous shortcuts from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
Built more than 100 years ago, it’s a feat that still ranks as the world’s greatest-ever engineering achievement. It’s motto, ‘the land divided, the world united’ hits the nail on the head.
Easing through the locks was like a final choreographed ballet, with ships going through at precise intervals. The whole proces of the 3 locks took 4 hours – to arrive at 26m above sea level into the hug Gatun lake. In the afternoon the ship did the whole proces back and ended docked at the port of Colon waiting for us to come back from our excursion.
The Panama canal offers remarkable scenery as well as wild life. We could spot slots, howlers, brown pelicans and lots of herons during our guided kayak tour on Gatun lake.
10th of March’22
Before docking in Miami there was one last port of call, Santo Tomas De Castilla in Guatemala. It lies in the Amatique Bay ogg theGulf of Honduras. From the port we took a water taxi of 30 minutes to the Amatique beach resort for a last day at the beach with a BBQ lobster lunch.
SEA DAYS (part 2)
The seadays at the end of the voyage were just perfect to rewind again and make ourself ready step by step to desembarkation- back to reality again . During those days we also enjoy the live onboard. Starting our lazy morning on our balcony with an impeccable breakfast served by one of the room service butlers, for whom nothing was too much trouble.
Lunch around the pool on The Patio or at the Collonade with the infinity ocean view were followed by afternoon cocktails, then pre-dinner drinks in the Observation bar and an invitation each night to join one of the ships director’s and several guests, who invariably became friends. Dancing under the stars was one of our highlights of the tour, when we had the chance to dance the night away with our new friends, Jeremy & Anne.
watch the breakfast video here : https://www.instagram.com/reel/Car6SOgAL56/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
watch the dancing under the stars video here : https://www.instagram.com/tv/Ca4kvcKgzJR/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
About the dress code on board : although the trend is for more ‘lengthy casual’ dining, Seabourn cruises have formal nights (we had two during this cruise) where passengers are expected wearing a tuxedo or a cocktail dress – and it’s regarded part of the fun.
I also posted two different videos about ‘what to wear’ on a cruise , day and night time.
Sunday 13th of march
There are good ships and wood ships, ships that sail the sea, but the best ships are friendships, may they always be. The Seabourn hospitality is legendary. After those two weeks on board we feel like leaving family.
Every member of the crew knows your name, your little habits, knows perfectly how to please you to make your voyage the most memorable. And that Seabourn signature is why we never say goodbye when leaving the Seabourn ships, we say : see you soon to our family at sea !
Watch the #dropchallenge video with the crew :