Scenic Eclipse was greeted with considerable fanfare upon arrival at numerous Central and South America ports as it made its way down to Antarctica for the 2022-2023 expedition season.
As the first cruise ship to visit after more than two years of inactivity due the COVID pandemic, local officials, residents and port authorities offered warm welcomes to the ship and its many guests.
Festivities ran the gamut and highlighted the generous spirit of the peoples along the western coasts and the need for travel to return to its periods of strong growth and local interactions.
Local dance troupes showed off their abilities at the port in Manta, Ecuador, while dance performers, including children and teenagers, put on an enthusiastic show in Salaverry, Peru. In Callao (Lima), Peru, the local Minister of Tourism, along with numerous other local officials, met with Scenic Eclipse Captain Rado and his team and toured the ultra-luxury yacht — and brought along the local news station to highlight the yacht’s visit and the National Police Marching Band to entertain the guests.
The city of Acajultla in El Salvador offered one of the biggest receptions with the Minister of Tourism, Head of Ports and a local tour operator coming aboard to meet with Scenic Eclipse Captain Erwan and his staff, while national and local media doing interviews with Scenic Eclipse guests and a full array of singers and dancers entertained. The small port at Playa Muerto, a small Embera village in the Darien Gap of Panama, made the extra effort when high waves negatsed the yacht porting there. 40 local villagers took to boats to visit the Scenic Eclipse, touring the ship and greeting the guests.
At the port in Paracas, Peru, guests enjoyed a warm welcome from a local band, accompanied by dance performances, before heading out on a tour of the waters surrounding Ballestra Islands, home to sea lions, dolphins, numerous bird species and thousands of birds. Guests arriving back to the yacht in Arica, Chile, after an in-depth exploration of the towns and sites of the rainless Atacama Desert, were greeted with a live band and an exhibition of folkloric dancing. The 228-guest yacht was equally welcoming as guests lined up on the ports and the yacht balconies to take in the wonderful display of local pride and enthusiasm shown to visitors.
Scenic’s newest Discovery Yacht, Scenic Eclipse II, due to launch in April 2023, is scheduled to visit similar regions and ports in Oct. and Nov. 2023 — from the Caribbean’s Turks & Caicos to the Panama Canal to Peru and then the Chilean Fjords — before joining Scenic Eclipse for the 2023-2024 Antarctica season – the first year both ultra-luxury yachts will be based there.
For more on these sailings, go to www.scenic.ca/ocean-cruises .