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Holland America Line unveils three ship 2012-13 South America programme

Holland America Line has announced an expanded South American programme for 2012/2013. Between autumn 2012 and spring 2013, three ships, ms Veendam, ms Maasdam and ms Prinsendam, will be taking guests to explore the continent on a series of expeditions designed to showcase the very best of South America, the first of which is due to depart Boston on 20 October 2012.

The 13 different South American itineraries will appeal to travellers looking for vibrant ports of call, historical adventures and a huge variety of landscapes, from the frozen glaciers of Chilean Patagonia, to the tropical Amazon Jungle in Brazil. Guests can also choose from Holland America Line’s award-winning shore excursions or in-depth overland tours, many of which visit UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

 The itineraries range from 13 to 68 days, including a new 49-day extended, port-intensive Amazon and Carnaval Voyage aboard Maasdam, departing in early 2013. A 23-day Amazon Explorer Cruise in November 2012 and a 68-day Grand South America and Antarctica Voyage in January 2013 aboard Prinsendam are additional highlights of Holland America’s South America cruise schedule.

“South America remains a favourite of our guests because it offers everything in one region – from exotic ports of call to well-known cities, and from the warmth of the Amazon to the snow-capped glaciers of Antarctica,” said Richard Meadows, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs. “Holland America Line offers travellers an opportunity to explore the cultures and natural treasures of South America via an extraordinary premium cruise experience at an exceptional price.”

Cruise fares are priced from £999 per person for the 13-day sailings to £9,199 per person for the 68-day Grand South America and Antarctica Voyage, based on double occupancy.

 South America and Antarctica onboard Veendam

From November 2012 to March 2013, the 1,350-guest Veendam will sail a series of six 13-day and one 17-day itineraries between Valparaiso (Santiago), Chile; Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The sailings will visit the scenic fjords of Chile, call at exotic locations such as Ushuaia (the southernmost town in the world), travel around Cape Horn and visit the Magellan Strait, gateway to Antarctica. Cruise fares begin at £999 per person, based on two sharing, for the 13-day sailings, and £1,199 for the 17-day voyages.

 There are also two non-repeating itineraries available: a 14- or 18-day South America cruise to Valparaiso (Santiago), Chile, departing Boston or Fort Lauderdale on 20 or 24 October 2012 respectively; and an 18- or 21-day South America cruise departing Valparaiso on 13 April 2013 and finishing in either Fort Lauderdale or Boston. These itineraries include a full transit of the Panama Canal plus extended port calls at Fuerte Amador (Panama City), Panama, and Callao (Lima), Peru.

Additional Veendam itineraries include a 21-day South America and Antarctica Explorer Holiday cruise departing Rio de Janeiro to Valparaiso on 20 December 2012, and a 20-day South America and Antarctica Explorer cruise departing Valparaiso to Buenos Aires on 10 January 2013. A 21-day South America and Antarctica Explorer cruise returns from Buenos Aires to Valparaiso on 30 January 2013. All voyages include scenic cruising throughout the spectacular Antarctic Peninsula and an overnight call at Rio de Janeiro or Buenos Aires. Cruise fares begin at £1,299 per person, double occupancy, for the 14- and 18-day sailings; £1,599 for the 18- and 21-day sailings departing Valparaiso; and £2,549 for the 20-day Antarctica sailing.

 The Amazon and Carnaval onboard Maasdam

Aboard Maasdam, guests can sail one unique 49-day Amazon and Carnaval Explorer Voyage, conveniently sailing on a round trip from Fort Lauderdale on 18 January 2013. Guests will spend 49 days exploring 25 ports throughout Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, Barbados, Brazil, Cayman Islands, Dominica, French Guiana, Trinidad and Tobago, crossing the equator twice during the voyage. A highlight of the voyage is Carnaval, a festive four-day celebration often referred to as the world's largest party that happens from 9-12 February.  Extended calls at seven ports  — Oranjestad, Aruba; Willemstad, Curaçao; Buenos Aires, Callao (Lima), Fuerte Amador (Panama City), Manaus and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil allow extra time ashore to enjoy historical and local attractions.

Shorter segments of Maasdam’s Amazon and Carnaval Explorer Voyage are available for those with less time. The 23-day segment departs Fort Lauderdale for Rio de Janeiro on 18 January 2013, and a 26-day segment departs Rio de Janeiro for Fort Lauderdale on 10 February 2013 which cruises down the Amazon River and crosses the equator. The 26-day itinerary also includes a two-night call at Rio de Janeiro where guests can experience exciting Carnaval.. Cruise fares begin at £5,099 per person, double occupancy, for the full 49-day Amazon and Carnaval Explorer Voyage; £1,999 per person for the 23-day Amazon and Carnaval Explorer Voyage and £3,449 for the 26-day segment.

 Grand South America and Antarctica voyage onboard Prinsendam

Departing 5 January 2013, Prinsendam sails south on a 68-day Grand South America and Antarctica Voyage roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale. During the voyage, Prinsendam will circumnavigate the continent, spend seven full days cruising the Amazon River and four days of scenic cruising in Antarctica. Overnight calls include Callao, Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro and Manaus. Shorter segments are available. Cruise fares begin at £9,199 per person, based on two sharing.