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14-Day Holiday Antillean Gems

15 Day Cruise from £5,998 pp  

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Seabourn 15 Day Cruise on Seabourn Sojourn, Seabourn from £5,998 pp  

Departure 21 December 2019 | 14-Day Holiday Antillean Gems

Fares are cruise-only unless otherwise stated. Contact us to add flights and tailor-make your holiday.

Destinations

  • San Juan
  • Gustavia
  • Nevis
  • Guadeloupe
  • South Friars Bay
  • At Sea
  • Willemstad
  • Kralendijk
  • Oranjestad
  • At Sea
  • Port Antonio
  • Cayman Brac
  • At Sea
  • Key West
  • Miami

14-Day Holiday Antillean Gems

from £5,998 pp
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Day by day itinerary

Day 1 — San Juan
If you associate Puerto Rico's capital with the colonial streets of Old San Juan, then you know only part of the picture. San Juan is a major metropolis, radiating out from the bay on the Atlantic Ocean that was discovered by Juan Ponce de León. More than a third of the island's nearly 4 million citizens proudly call themselves sanjuaneros. The city may be rooted in the past, but it has its eye on the future. Locals go about their business surrounded by colonial architecture and towering modern structures.By 1508 the explorer Juan Ponce de León had established a colony in an area now known as Caparra, southeast of present-day San Juan. He later moved the settlement north to a more hospitable peninsular location. In 1521, after he became the first colonial governor, Ponce de León switched the name of the island—which was then called San Juan Bautista in honor of St. John the Baptist—with that of the settlement of Puerto Rico ("rich port").Defended by the imposing Castillo San Felipe del Morro (El Morro) and Castillo San Cristóbal, Puerto Rico's administrative and population center remained firmly in Spain's hands until 1898, when it came under U.S. control after the Spanish-American War. Centuries of Spanish rule left an indelible imprint on the city, particularly in the walled area now known as Old San Juan. The area is filled with cobblestone streets and brightly painted, colonial-era structures, and its fortifications have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.Old San Juan is a monument to the past, but most of the rest of the city is planted firmly in the 21st century and draws migrants island-wide and from farther afield to jobs in its businesses and industries. The city captivates residents and visitors alike with its vibrant lifestyle as well as its balmy beaches, pulsing nightclubs, globe-spanning restaurants, and world-class museums. Once you set foot in this city, you may never want to leave.
Day 2 — Gustavia
Gustavia

Gustavia

You can easily explore all of Gustavia during a two-hour stroll. Some shops close from noon to 3 or 4, so plan lunch accordingly, but stores stay open past 7 in the evening. Parking in Gustavia is a challenge, especially during vacation times. A good spot to park is rue de la République, alongside the catamarans, yachts, and sailboats.
Day 3 — Nevis
The written history of Nevis begins with the account recorded by Columbus when he sailed by Nevis in 1493. The name Nevis is derived from “Nuestra Senora de Las Nieves” which means “Our Lady of the Snows”, because of the cloud capped mountain reminding Columbus of snow. Prior to the Columbus saga, Nevis was named Dulcina “Sweet Island” by the Arawaks and later Oualie “land of beautiful waters” by the Caribs. Later in the 18th century, Nevis became known as “Queen of the Caribees.” Evidence of pre-ceramic people abounds with finely crafted stone tools and intricately colored pottery found. Over the years Nevis has made a number of significant contributions to the Caribbean and the world. Two men who played part in international history were Alexander Hamilton and Lord Horatio Nelson. On September 19, 1983, Nevis became part of an independent nation and form part of the sovereign democratic state of St. Christopher and Nevis. It has the unique constitutional arrangement of being part of the Federal Parliament while having a separate parliament of its own Nevis Island Administration headed by a Premier. The island is covered with ruins of the sugar plantation era, which declined in the late 1800s after slavery was abolished and the sugar beet created competition for sugar cane. Nevis is a paradise for nature lovers. There is excellent snorkeling just offshore and scuba diving around wrecks and natural reefs. There are rainforests, reefs and ruins, a fascinating destination for people who enjoy the natural side of the tropics.
Day 4 — Guadeloupe
Les Saintes Islands, Guadeloupe

Les Saintes Islands, Guadeloupe

Guadeloupe, shaped like a giant butterfly, lies between the islands of Antigua and Dominica. As a French overseas department it has the same form of administration as any other French department. The main concentration of population is in Pointe-à-Pitre, its name derived from a Dutch fisherman of Jewish origin who was expelled from Brazil by the Portuguese. As the island’s main economic centre, Pointe-à-Pitre lies at the junction where the bridge spans the Salée River, dividing Basse-Terre from Grande-Terre. The bustling city of some 100,000 inhabitants experienced over the years severe damage from earthquakes, fires and hurricanes. The remaining French colonial structures help to retain a certain charm while at the same time a modern city is emerging. In sharp contrast to the glitzy duty-free shops are the bustling market and the Place de la Victoire, surrounded by wood buildings with balconies and shutters. Out of town, on the Grande-Terre side, are the major tourist areas of Gosier and Ste. Anne, known for their white sand beaches and resort hotels. Mountainous Basse-Terre is home to the Soufrière volcano and the 74,100-acre (29,600-ha) Parc Naturel, full of lakes, waterfalls and hot springs in addition to lush vegetation and stunning scenery.
Day 5 — South Friars Bay
Day 6 — At Sea
Day 7 — Willemstad
Willemstad

Willemstad

Dutch settlers came here in the 1630s, about the same time they sailed through the Verazzano Narrows to Manhattan, bringing with them original red-tile roofs, first used on the trade ships as ballast and later incorporated into the architecture of Willemstad. Much of the original colonial structures remain, but this historic city is constantly reinventing itself and the government monument foundation is always busy restoring buildings in one urban neighborhood or another. The salty air causes what is called "wall cancer" which causes the ancient abodes to continually crumble over time. The city is cut in two by Santa Anna Bay. On one side is Punda (the point)—crammed with shops, restaurants, monuments, and markets and a new museum retracing its colorful history. And on the other side is Otrobanda (literally meaning the "other side"), with lots of narrow, winding streets and alleyways (called "steekjes" in Dutch), full of private homes notable for their picturesque gables and Dutch-influenced designs. In recent years the ongoing regeneration of Otrobanda has been apparent, marked by a surge in development of new hotels, restaurants, and shops; the rebirth, concentrated near the waterfront, was spearheaded by the creation of the elaborate Kura Hulanda complex.There are three ways to cross the bay: by car over the Juliana Bridge; by foot over the Queen Emma pontoon bridge (locally called "The Swinging Old Lady"); or by free ferry, which runs when the pontoon bridge is swung open for passing ships. All the major hotels outside town offer free shuttle service to town once or twice daily. Shuttles coming from the Otrobanda side leave you at Riffort. From here it's a short walk north to the foot of the pontoon bridge. Shuttles coming from the Punda side leave you near the main entrance to Ft. Amsterdam.
Day 8 — Kralendijk
Day 9 — Oranjestad
Oranjestad

Oranjestad

Aruba's capital is easily explored on foot. Its palm-lined central thoroughfare runs between old and new pastel-painted buildings of typical Dutch design (Spanish influence is also evident in some of the architecture). There are a lot of malls with boutiques and shops—the Renaissance mall carries high-end luxury items and designer fashions. A massive renovation in downtown has given Main Street (a.k.a. Caya G. F. Betico Croes) behind the Renaissance Resort a whole new lease on life: boutique malls, shops, and restaurants have opened next to well-loved family-run businesses. The pedestrian-only walkway and resting areas have unclogged the street, and the new eco-trolley is free and a great way to get around. At this writing, Linear Park was well and will showcase local merchants and artists. There will be activities along a boardwalk that will eventually run all the way to the end of Palm Beach, making it the longest of its kind in the Caribbean.
Day 10 — At Sea
Day 11 — Port Antonio
Port Antonio, on the Northeast coast of Jamaica, is the islands third largest port, mainly for bananas and coconuts. It is also an important tourist destination. In fact, it has been featured as a model of paradise in several famous Hollywood films such as Club Paradise and Cocktail. Port Antonio was a sleepy coastal town until the 1880s, when Lorenzo Dow Baker, an American businessman, started the banana trade in Jamaica and promoted Port Antonio as a vacation spot for wealthy Americans. "Portie", as it is nicknamed, became a boom town. Even the movie star Errol Flynn was enamoured and ended up buying property here after his yacht washed ashore in 1946. Today it is still a major destination with plenty to do and see, from stunning scenery, creative arts and crafts, and cultural and historical sites.
Day 12 — Cayman Brac
First spotted on his fourth and final trans-Atlantic crossing in 1503 and originally named Las Tortugas by Christopher Columbus because of the many turtles he spotted on the island, Cayman Brac rears up out of the water as if surrounded by a fort. Think craggy limestone shores (although archetypal sandy beaches and blue lapping seas are assured on the north of the island), which have kept this Cayman relatively free from mass tourism. Because of her geographical location (145km from Grand Cayman) and her challenging coastal approach, life has remained very laid back here, with local enterprises being stonemasonry and fishing, although some mass tourism is being developed thanks mostly due to its pristine underwater eco-system ensuring divers and snorkellers some very special sights. The Brac, or “Bluff” has however been a magnetic pull to climbers in recent years, with over 100 sport climbs mapped out on the easterly cliff face. Despite its rich historical past the island is assuredly modern. The middle child of the Cayman Islands, Cayman Brac is just 19kms long (although its little sister, Little Cayman is 16km, while Grand Cayman, although still small, is by far the largest at 35 km). Nevertheless, the plethora of hidden caves, nature trails and abundant wildlife both above and below the water make this little gem a paradise for nature lovers.
Day 13 — At Sea
Day 14 — Key West, Florida
Located closer to Havana than Miami, Key West is synonymous for all that is fabulous. Whether it’s beaches, back country or just a brilliant time that you’re after, Florida’s most southern point holds a wealth of intrigue, both past and present. Famed for its unique originality, Key West is a condensation of the best of the sunshine state – fantastic weather, laid back attitude, deep-rooted history and masses of fantastic, fresh seafood; it’s little wonder that nobody ever wants to leave.Floating in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico, the island has two very definite personalities: bookish and bizarre. On the one hand, the literary festivals, exquisite Caribbean architecture and splendid art galleries attract the bourgeoisie, while on the other, the eccentricity and reticence to be associated with “the mainland” attracts all kinds of “happies” –new era hippies. The two dichotomies live peacefully side by side and have done ever since travellers started arriving in the 1960s — Key West being one of the three big K’s on the hippie path to enlightenment (Kuta and Kathmandu are the others).But past the idiosyncrasies of the Key Westers, and you will find an island that is literally brimming over with spectacular sights and wonderful wilderness. From Henry S. Truman’s Little White House and Ernest Hemmingway’s house and studio, to botanical gardens and marine sanctuaries, visitors will leave this fascinating island wanting more.Best seen by foot, bike or boat, this is an island to be explored al fresco.
Day 15 — Miami, Florida
Fort Lauderdale, Florida, North America

Fort Lauderdale, Florida, North America

Miami is one of the world’s most popular holiday spots. It has so much to offer; from its countless beach areas, to culture and museums, from spa and shopping days out, to endless cuban restaurants and cafes. Miami is a multicultural city that has something to offer to everyone.

Sailing on Seabourn Sojourn

Seabourn Sojourn, which will debut next year, carries 450 guests in the same intimate, relaxed atmosphere as its smaller sister ships and shares the same all-suite accommodations and delights, such as the water sports marina.

See more about Seabourn Sojourn

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All of our cruise specialists are also global travel experts. They'll happily draw from their years of experience to combine your cruise with any number of pre- and post-cruise holiday options, creating a trip designed for you.

Included as standard...

  • 1 year complimentary Priority Pass membership
  • Complimentary airport lounge access *
  • Welcome Home Gift

* fly-cruise only

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