The Boi-Bumba, the Samba, Patagonia and Antarctica: Crystal Cruises Reveals the Rhythmic Adventure of South America in 2006

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 17 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — From music and culture to adventure and wildlife, Crystal Cruises’ 2006 South America season aboard Crystal Symphony explores the continent’s rich diversity with authentic and unique experiences ashore. With 153 Crystal Adventures, guests can find themselves dancing the tango in Buenos Aires, sipping wines in Montevideo, trekking the ice fields of Antarctica, or soaring high above Tierra del Fuego.

“South America is a fascinating continent of contrasts — from rugged nature to cosmopolitan cities — and our Crystal Adventures are designed to put guests in the middle of the experience, whether it’s swaying to the samba, trekking Patagonia, or marching with penguins,” says John Stoll, Crystal’s director of land programs.

From February through April 2006, Crystal Symphony offers a diverse collection of South America cruises including two new eco-rich Amazon itineraries. Among the season’s highlights are itineraries around Cape Horn offering excursions to Antarctica, overnight stays in Buenos Aires, Punta Arenas, Ushuaia, Rio de Janeiro and Manaus, each offering its own eclectic and enriching mix of shoreside discovery. Highlights include:

Exhilarating Adventures
* Soar above Antarctica on a flightseeing adventure revealing huge
icebergs, tower-like mountains, snow-white glaciers, and glistening
lakes of the Strait of Magellan, Tierra del Fuego National Park and the
Beagle Channel…
* … or trek the ice fields of Antarctica on an expedition following the
paths of great explorers on King George Island. (Both from Punta
Arenas, Chile)
* Journey on a four-wheel-drive excursion through the heart of the
Fuegian mountain range, followed by a hike through the glacier-carved
Carbajal Valley — one of four new tours for the season. (Ushuaia,
Argentina).
* Experience a 40-minute dune buggy adventure along the high, white-sand
dunes Cumbuco Beach. (Fortaleza, Brazil)

Wildlife Discoveries
* March with penguins on a journey through the Patagonian Plateau to the
Punta Tombo Nature Reserve, home to the largest continental Magellan
penguin colony. (Puerto Madryn, Argentina)
* Journey into the Iguazu Falls National Park to ride the Eco-Train and
witness Devil’s Gorge, the largest of nearly 275 falls that constitute
Iguazu Falls — taller and four times as wide as Niagra Falls. (Buenos
Aires, Argentina)
* Explore Patagonia’s Valdes Peninsula, a World Heritage Site by UNESCO
known for its yearly visitation of southern right whales and is
regarded for its conservation of penguins, seals, sea lions and sea
elephants. (Puerto Madryn, Argentina)

Dance & Music
* Experience the Boi-Bumba celebration, a loud, rhythmic music ceremony
that has been a folkloric ritual for the last 80 years. (Parintins,
Brazil)
* Listen as world-renowned Brazilian conductor Rui Carvalho leads the
Amazon Jazz Band at the famed Teatro Amazonas Opera House. (Manaus,
Brazil)
* Enjoy access to fashionable nightclubs to witness the samba in Rio de
Janeiro and the tango in Buenos Aires.

Authentic Cultural Experiences
* Explore and taste the acclaimed vintages of the Juanico Winery, one of
South America’s finest. (Montevideo, Uruguay)
* Experience Uruguayan rural life on a true working ranch as gauchos milk
cows, heard sheep, and go about their ranch activities. (Montevideo,
Uruguay)
* Learn more about Uruguay’s past and present Jewish presence on a tour
of the historic Old Town, the Golda Meir Square and the Holocaust
Memorial, among other important sites. (Montevideo, Uruguay)

Further enhancing the shoreside programming is Crystal’s 2006 lineup of South America Extended Land Programs which include pre- and/or post-cruise overland excursion to Iguazu Falls from Buenos Aires (five nights), a new three-night extended land program to Machu Picchu from Valparaiso, and a six-night excursion to the Galapagos from Valparaiso. Five cruises, ranging from 11 to 16 days, depart from Miami, Florida; Manaus, Brazil; Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Valparaiso, Chile.

Depending on itinerary selected, per person, double occupancy fares begin at $2,995. A fuel surcharge of $4.00 per person, per day will be applied to all cruise fares.

The Crystal Difference

Crystal Cruises continues to receive the travel industry’s most distinguished hospitality awards and guidebook ratings, including the “World’s Best Large-Ship Cruise Line” award in the most recent readers’ surveys conducted by Conde Nast Traveler and Travel + Leisure magazines. In 2005, Crystal became the only cruise line and only hotel (floating or otherwise) to win Travel + Leisure’s “World’s Best” award in its category for ten consecutive years.

The 940-guest, 50,000-ton Crystal Symphony is among the most spacious and luxurious vessels cruising in the luxury market. Its unique size allows for smooth sailing and a wide range of innovative facilities, generous amenities and elegant accommodations. The Six-Star rated liner features grand lounges, a lavish spa outfitted in accordance with the principles of Feng Shui, extensive exercise facilities, complimentary golf, yoga and Pilates instruction, Asian and Italian specialty restaurants, and the popular Computer University@Sea(R), offering 24-hour e-mail and internet access, as well as hands-on instruction, expansive decks, two pools, award-winning cuisine and entertainment, and exquisitely appointed staterooms, more than half of which offer private verandahs.

For additional information, contact a travel agent or call 888-799-4625. Visit the luxury line’s website at www.crystalcruises.com.

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