Seabourn Sojourn
Fort Lauderdale to Los Angeles
December 17, 2013 to January 4, 2014
December 13, 2013       This is the fourth year that we are spending on a Seabourn ship over the Holidays -
2010/1 on the Sojourn,  2011/2 on the Odyssey,  2012/3 on the Quest, and once again back on the Sojourn.  
Because we are continuing on the World Cruise this year, Seabourn provided us with luggage transfer, air
transportation, and limo service from our home to the airport, all of which went smoothly.

We stayed at the Westin in Fort Lauderdale for four nights prior to boarding the Sojourn. Our agreement is
that Cliff goes bird watching in the mornings and Eleanor shops in the afternoon.  I added a number of
photographs to my
Birds of Florida Gallery and managed to get my first photograph of a sora.  The
weather was sunny, warm and windy for our stay, which we much preferred to the snowy cold weather in
Connecticut!  We ended up eating dinner at a wonderful restaurant by the name of
Casablanca for three of
the four nights in Fort Lauderdale.

December 17th        Boarding went smoothly and after the mandatory safety drill we set sail for our first
port, Cartegena, Columbia on December 20th.  Our first Formal Night was on the 18th and
Eleanor looked
marvelous in one of the new gowns she brought for the trip.  On this first segment of the voyage we
have an interesting group of lecturers:

Dr Norman Caisse who participated in the Apollo space project and in the search for Extraterrestrial
Intelligence programs and has a Doctorate in Astronomy;

Professor Paul du Quenoy of the Department of History and Archaeology at the University of Beirut who
lectured on the various ports and countries we will visit; and,

Danny Catt - a biologist, world traveler, author and photographer from Canada who lectured on the various
wildlife we will have the chance to observe on the cruise.

We loaded our Kindles with lots of novels, so our sea days have been relaxing attending lectures, meeting
other passengers, a surprising number of which we remember from other cruises, and watching the
evening entertainment.

December 21st        After 3 sea days we docked in Cartegena.  This was the fourth time in as many years
that we stopped in this Columbian city.  We were docked some distance from the Old City and decided to
stay around the port area where they had a new visitor center with a few shops, as well as quite a
menagerie of birds and other wildlife roaming the property.  Here is a
LINK to photos I have taken in
Cartegena during the past 4 years.

December 22nd        We anchored in the San Blas Islands, Panama for the day.  We took a short tender ride
to a small village of Kuna Indian People.  They are poor, but an absolute delight to visit and

December 23rd       Our transit through the Panama Canal was pleasant with beautiful weather.  From our
perspective aboard the ship we could not tell that much progress had been made since last year on the
new locks. Here is a
LINK to photos I took in January from the Regent Mariner and those from this trip on
the Seabourn Sojourn.  This was our fifth trip through the canal.

December 24th        Quiet day at sea.  Most evenings we have been invited to dinner at a "hosted table"
and have met lots of interesting people, lecturers and entertainers.  We declined the invitation for the
evening and enjoyed a quiet dinner for the two of us and a piano performance by
Hyperion Knight, who
I have gotten to know quit well during the cruise.

December 25th        We docked at Puntarenas, Costa Rica and participated on a crocodile and bird
watching tour.  This was the third time we did this tour and I was able to get a couple of decent photos to
add to my gallery of birds in this part of the world.  We joined the ship's Doctor and nurse for Christmas
Dinner and then enjoyed a special Christmas Show.

December 26th        Another pleasant Sea Day

December 27th
       This was our second visit to Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala.  The first time was two years
ago on the Seabourn Odyssey.  It is the largest port in Guatemala and not the picturesque.  A short shuttle
bus ride from the dock there is a collection of craft shops which we walked about, but then returned to the
ship for the day.  

December 28th         Puerto Chiapas, Mexico is a pleasant port with a new visitor center.  We skipped the
tours and instead walked through some of the shops and watched a local dance group.   

December 29th          Our port was Huatulco, Mexico.  The surroundings are beautiful and the town is
relatively new with many shops.  Our destination for the day was a tour to an ecological preserve for
crocodiles and other reptiles, mammals and birds.   It was over an hour drive from the port.  The country
side was interesting, but the destination not that great

December 30th        A sea day that we used to relax and read.  I worked on catching up with my photos and
some end of the year book keeping chores.

December 31st        The last day of 2013 was a pleasant day of cruising along the Mexican coast on our way
to Cabo san Lucas.  We were invited to join the Staff Captain for dinner.  The year concluded with a special
New Year's eve show in the Grand Salon.

January 1st                We were anchored for the day in Cabo san Lucas, which is really a spectacular
location.  As we had visited this port on two previous occasions we did not participate in a tour, but just
enjoyed walking through the shops along the water front.

January 2nd and 3rd        These were sea days as we cruised from Cabo to Los Angeles.  We were invited
to dinner on the 2nd with
Den and Bobbie West  which was very enjoyable.  Most of the guests on this
cruise will depart tomorrow and we will then be off on our 116 day cruise to Venice

January 4th                This turned out to be one, if not the best, cruises we have been on in the terms of
comfort (smooth seas for 18 days) and being well run.  We enjoyed seeing old friends and made lots of new
ones.  Most evenings we were invited to dine with entertainers or crew members.  

Gallery of Birds of Columbia, Panama, Costa Rica and Mexico

General Photos of Holiday Cruise