South America is a destination like no other and a cruise around this part of the world is certain to give you the holiday of a lifetime. With a blend of different countries into one, it's a truly unique part of the world. From colourful Latin cities, to tropical jungles and from ice-walled fjords to tranquil Inca ruins, South America has it all.
Cruises around this vast continent will allow you to discover one of the most dramatic coastlines in the world and take in an array of fascinating views. Whether you take a fly cruise to South America, a cruise-and-stay trip or a cruise around-the-horn, you will be able to experience all that these stunning countries have to offer.
Even better, with such diverse locations, there is something for everyone in South America and voyages here will appeal to every type of cruiser. So whether you're adventurous, the relaxers or the explorers, the cruise of a lifetime is ready and waiting to be enjoyed.
The best time of year is from November to early May, as these are the summer months. If you'd like to get up close and personal with the wildlife, it's recommended that the best time to see this is in December and January.
With so many countries making up South America, it's no surprise to learn that there's an extensive list of delicious dishes in each region. However, we've narrowed it down to a few favourites to help you choose:
If you're looking for something to wash down your food with, pisco sours, made from pisco, egg white and lime juice are Peru's national drink, while Yerba Mate tea is the go to drink in Argentina.
South America is a place of extremes and around every corner is a new surprise. Visit the bustling street carnivals in Rio de Janeiro or the stunning beaches of Uruguay. Learn to tango in Buenos Aires or take a tour around the lush rainforests in Panama. For the most desired thing to do, take a trip to Machu Picchu to see one of the most pictured attractions in the world or for those that really want to delve into nature, visit the Galapagos Islands. If you want to read more about what you can do, take a look at our Top 10 South American Shore Excursions.
What's more, if you are already thinking about your exciting South American cruise why not extend it to a cruise & stay holiday so you can spend more time exploring the vibrant cities? Alternatively, if you want to combine this amazing country with the icy South Polar depths have a look at our amazing offers on once in a lifetime Antarctica Cruises.
Follow in the footsteps of the famous explorers Magellan, Drake and Shackleton to discover the celestial beauty of Patagonia, Cape Horn and Antarctica. Cruise deep into the Amazon Rainforest in search of rare species and primitive river towns. Gaze in bewilderment at the sacred puzzle of the ancient Incas at Machu Picchu. Explore ancient colonial cities and be amongst the cosmopolitan vibrancy of Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires and Santiago. Take a shore excursion to shop for fine wine, lapis, amber and leather goods. No matter which countries you visit and the shore excursions you embark on, a South America cruise will enchant, amaze and excite you from start to finish.
As the Brazilians say, 'god made the world in six days, the seventh he devoted to Rio de Janeiro'. This amazing and vibrant city cries out to be explored from morning to evening. Whether you want to spend your time here on the enticing beaches, in the lush mountains or dancing samba into the early hours of the morning, Brazil has all you need for a memorable port of call during your South America cruise.
Pretty much the most southerly mainland port of South America, your time in Argentina can be spent gazing out over the Magellan Strait in Ushuaia and enjoy a viewpoint enjoyed by adventurers and explorers alike for hundreds of years. Buenos Aires is the city to see in Argentina, boasting everything from museums and art galleries to the Reserva Ecologica Costanera Sur, a nature reserve teeming with more than 200 species of birds.
The Chilean port of San Antonio has a rich history as one of the most important trading posts on the Pacific Coast and as such it buzzes today with an established and historic ambience. What's more, it's the perfect location for easy access to Santiago de Chile where you can visit the museums, theatres and restaurants to discover the history and culture of this lively country. If you're a nature lover, Chile also has plenty of wildlife living in the fjords and snow-capped mountains.
During your South America cruise, a stop off in Uruguay will take you to the port of call at the country's capital, Montevideo. Here you can check out the hub of life in the city, Independence Square. With a bustling main boulevard, lined with shops and cafes, be sure to spend an afternoon exploring, although don't forget to leave enough time to sit back and tuck into the delicious national cuisine.
Lima, the cultural and business hub of Peru offers top-class museums, vibrant nightlife, amazing architecture and exciting festivals all year round. However, the most popular and breathtaking excursion you can take is a trip to one of the seven wonders of the world: Machu Picchu. Here, in the Lost City of the Incas, you can see probably the best example of dry stone walling the world has to offer, thought to have been constructed around 1450.