With its vast coastline and variety of fascinating port cities, it’s no wonder that Argentina is becoming an increasingly popular country to visit as part of a cruise. But whether you’re new to this style of travel or an old hat at touring the oceans by ship, it can be a daunting challenge selecting the Argentina cruise best suited to you.
So, to stop you feeling all at sea when planning your next vacation in Argentina, make sure you consider the following five things.
Things to consider before selecting your Argentina cruise:
1. The cruise itinerary and proportion of time spent at sea
Itineraries may include docking at South America’s liveliest capital, Buenos Aires or sailing through the glimmering waters of the Beagle Channel in the far south of the country, so be sure to do your homework about where exactly you’ll be visiting.
Remember that the number of days spent on dry land can vary. If you’re concerned about your sea legs, ensure your cruise includes on-shore excursions daily.
When cruising in South Argentina, this can take the form of learning about Patagonian history in the southernmost city in the world, Ushuaia or even boarding a smaller Zodiac boat for a day trip to an island teeming with Magellanic penguins.
2. The size of the ship
If you prefer a cruise with a decent selection of onboard entertainment and facilities, you’ll want to go with a large Argentina cruise ship. However, these larger vessels come with a disadvantage. Oftentimes bigger vessels offer limited opportunities to explore the more inaccessible parts of the country’s vast coastline.
In the very south of Argentina, smaller exploration cruise ships are the only way of making the most of the region.
Because of this, those looking to venture where few tourists have been before will find smaller ships more suited to them. These crafts offer a more personalized experience, with fewer passengers and a higher staff-to-guest ratio, as well as the opportunity to dock at tiny, otherwise unreachable harbors and on remote stretches of uninhabited land.
Smaller ships are also more likely to include unrestricted ocean views from each and every cabin – something worth considering, particularly in the south of the country where the most stunning parts of the coastline are to be found.
3. Cruise excursions
Another key consideration of a successful and enjoyable Argentina cruise ship is identifying the types of on-shore excursions you would like to take. Firstly, check what is and is not included in your itinerary and what additional costs you may need to pay as a result.
It’s also important that you book additional excursions well enough in advance to secure your place. Depending upon the cruise style, you canexpect a range of activities from several days spent docked at cities to land excursions, including short treks through spectacular national parks.
As a result, it’s important to carefully read the recommended packing lists to ensure that your clothing is suitable for the conditions of different activities and the weather that you can expect to experience
4. When to go
Given that Argentina is a huge country, it should come as no surprise that weather conditions vary considerably depending on the region you are visiting. This can very much dictate when cruises depart.
For example, Patagonia and the southernmost stretches of the country are only accessible during the Austral summer, between September and April. On the other hand, Buenos Aires and the northern parts of the country are very hot and crowded during this period, making spring and autumn better seasons for visiting.
Be aware that the further south you visit on an Argentina cruise, the more changeable the weather; expect fluctuations of temperature between 41°F (5°C) and 59°F (15°C) and conditions ranging from sunshine to rain and even the occasional snowfall.
5. Cost and added extras
When booking your Argentina cruise, it’s important to confirm exactly what is included in the initial price and whether you will be required to pay additional costs for activities or food during the cruise.
Finally, some of the best Argentina cruises include onboard staff with expertise in the region’s geography, flora, and fauna. The quality of lectures can vary significantly between companies, so it’s important youfind out the standard that you should expect before selecting your cruise.