Panama Canal Cruise & Coastal California

From $2899 (was $3149)

Per person, double occupancy, excludes roundtrip airfare

21 Days
Passport Required View Dates and Prices

This program is currently sold out but new dates are coming soon! Call 877-332-6185 for more details.


The Panama Canal is a 51-mile overland route connecting the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans—it’s a miracle of modern engineering that anchors this unbelievable journey through Coastal California, Mexico’s greatest beaches, and several of Central and South America’s most charming cities.

Trip Includes

6 Countries
  • USA
  • Mexico
  • Costa Rica
  • Guatemala
  • Panama
  • Colombia
  • San Francisco
  • Monterey
  • Hearst Castle
  • Solvang
  • Santa Barbara
  • Los Angeles
  • Cabo San Lucas
  • Puerto Vallarta
  • Acapulco
  • Puerto Quetzal
  • Puerto Caldera (Puntarenas)
  • Panama Canal
  • Cartagena
  • Miami
Cruise Accommodations
  • 15 Nights
  • Cruise aboard Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Joy
Hotel Accommodations
  • 5 Nights
  • Moderate hotels based on twin/double occupancy
  • All meals onboard ship
  • A professionally trained English-speaking local tour director who is knowledgeable of the area and will provide you with a wealth of information. Their friendly service will make your trip a memorable experience.
Baggage Handling
  • To and from your hotel room and cruise ship cabin throughout your tour for one piece of Checked Baggage per person.

Activity Level

Easy going activity level

Click here for full details.

Trip Highlights

  • Discover San Francisco, Monterey, and the spectacular California coast
  • Tour the legendary Hearst Castle
  • Relax in Puerto Vallarta and Acapulco, Mexico’s most scenic beach resort towns
  • Stop in three fantastic countries
  • Daylight transit of the Panama Canal
  • Explore stunning Cartagena, a UNESCO World Heritage site

Free Balcony Upgrade and Free Beverage or Internet Package Set Sail Offers

*Inside Cabins receive choice of Free Beverage Package OR Free Internet. Ocean View and Balcony Cabins receive both Free Beverage Package and Free Internet. Beverage Package require additional service fees. Free Balcony Upgrade available for Ocean View Cabins only. Balcony Upgrade valued at $1,000 per couple. Web prices reflect Instant Rebate pricing. Offers valid for new bookings only and subject to availability. Offer may be cancelled at any time. Click here to view additional offer details.

Please follow the steps below to price your vacation with YMT Vacations. When you complete all the steps, click “Reserve” next to the date on which you would like to travel.

Step 1

Airfare to tour:

Step 2

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(Click the map to enlarge)

Panama Canal Cruise & Coastal California

Tours Starts: San Francisco, California

Tours Ends: Miami, Florida

Day 1

Arrive in San Francisco

Guests who booked air through YMT will be greeted by a representative and transferred to the hotel. The rest of the evening is at leisure.

Doubletree by Hilton Hotel San Francisco Airport or similar

Day 2

Pier 39 and Transfer to Monterey

Start your day with a visit to San Francisco’s Pier 39. One of the city’s most popular attractions, Pier 39 is part of Fisherman’s Wharf, and has an abundance of great shopping and dining options. Keep your eyes and ears peeled for the pier’s famous sea lions! In the afternoon, we make our way to Monterey, a charming seaside town with a bustling Old Town Historic District and beaches that are perfect for strolling!

Hilton Garden Inn or similar

Day 3

17-Mile Drive and Tour of Hearst Castle

This morning, take in the 17-Mile Drive. Enjoy views of Pebble Beach and Pacific Grove, with a quick photo stop at the Lone Cypress. Then, arrive at the Hearst Castle! The beautiful former estate of media mogul William Randolph Hearst offers splendid views of the coast. Enjoy a 45-minute guided tour of the grand rooms, with time to stroll the garden and pool areas.

Quality Inn San Simeon or similar

Day 4

Solvang, Santa Barbara Mission, and Transfer to Los Angeles

Continue your scenic drive today and enjoy a lunch stop in the charming Danish replica village of Solvang. Be sure to taste the exquisite baked goods prepared by its renowned bakeries! Then head to Santa Barbara, the American Riviera—famous for Spanish mission style architecture, mild Mediterranean climate, and stunning ocean views. We'll have a brief stop at the lovely Santa Barbara Mission, where you can enjoy an included self-guided tour. This evening, arrive in Los Angeles.

Four Points LAX or similar

Day 5

Los Angeles City Tour

Enjoy a guided tour of Los Angeles and Hollywood, seeing many of the can’t-miss highlights. View the iconic metal curves of the Walt Disney Concert Hall, the ornate TCL Chinese Theatre, the Dolby Theatre—annual home of the Academy Awards—Beverly Hills, and the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Four Points LAX or similar

Day 6

Embark on the Joy (3:00 PM)

Spend the morning at leisure before boarding the Norwegian Joy for your Panama Canal cruise. Fresh from $50 million of upgrades in 2019, the Joy has many exciting amenities onboard, and stunning Observation Lounges!

Day 7

At Sea

Day 8

Cabo San Lucas, Mexico (10:00 AM – 6:00 PM)

The jewel of the Baja Peninsula is famous for world-class sport fishing, the iconic El Arco, a naturally occurring limestone arch, and high-end resorts and exclusive gated communities.

Day 9

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico (11:00 AM – 8:00 PM)

The quintessential Mexican resort town, Puerto Vallarta is overflowing with the charm of the old country. Narrow cobblestone streets lined with shops and galleries provide perfectly shaded patios where guests indulge in authentic carne asada to the sounds of local mariachi bands. Make time to wander the 25-mile stretch of golden beaches along Banderas Bay.

Day 10

Mazatlán, Mexico (8:00 AM – 5:00 PM)

Utilizing its prime coastal location, Mazatlán was developed into a thriving commercial seaport by German immigrants in the mid-19th century to import equipment for the nearby gold and silver mines. The German influence created a very unique hybrid culture: the local music style, “banda,” is a distinctive variation of Bavarian folk music, and German immigrants founded the now world-famous Pacìfico brewery in 1900.

Day 11 & 12

At Sea

Day 13

Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala (8:00 AM – 5:00 PM)

Puerto Quetzal is Guatemala’s largest Pacific Ocean port, and while the town itself is quite industrial, it is close enough to Antigua for guests to easily make the trek on their day in port. Antigua is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and this elegant former capital is an incredible example of Central American colonial architecture that is well worth the trip!

Day 14

At Sea

Day 15

Puerto Caldera (Puntarenas), Costa Rica (8:00 AM – 4:00 PM)

How will you spend your full day in Puntarenas? Perhaps visit the beach, shop and grab a meal in the Paseo de los Turistas, and be sure to order a local Churchill. Taste the official snack of Puntarenas, a deliciously rich dessert of shaved ice, fresh fruit, syrup, and condensed milk!

Day 16

At Sea

Day 17

Scenic Cruising of the Panama Canal

Cross over one of humankind’s most impressive engineering feats—the legendary Panama Canal. This 51-mile artificial waterway through the tiny nation of Panama connects the Pacific and Atlantic Ocean, and fulfilled explorers’ centuries-long dream when it was completed in 1914. Enjoy this design marvel as you pass through its long series of locks.

Day 18

Cartagena, Colombia (10:00 AM – 5:00 PM)

There is beauty everywhere you look in this fascinating colonial city, a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is positioned on an especially scenic stretch of the Caribbean coast, and boasts a stunning old town with phenomenal architecture and miles of remarkably preserved colonial-era stone walls. The food is spectacular, the people are friendly, and there are countless sights to take your breath away.

Day 19 & 20

At Sea

Day 21

Disembarkation in Miami and Depart for Home (7:00 AM)

Please note that this is a proposed itinerary; the actual itinerary may vary due to season, special events, or weather. Because our tour arrangements are often made a year or more in advance, YMT Vacations reserves the right to alter the itinerary. Itinerary changes are made to improve your vacation experience, as well as respond to any unforeseen circumstances that mandate alterations. By their nature, all tours vacations involve a certain level of physical activity. While YMT tours have been designed with our guests in mind and are not physically demanding, this tour does include walking and periods of standing during the sightseeing visits. You will also encounter steps and some uneven ground along the way, particularly at older, historical sights.

YMT Vacations itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently.

Joy Inside Cabin

These staterooms include two lower beds that convert to a queen-size bed.

Accommodates: 2-3 Total Approx.
Size: 135 sq. ft.

Joy Ocean View Cabin

These staterooms feature a large picture window and two single beds that convert to a queen-size bed.

Accommodates: 2
Total Approx. Size: 160 - 245 sq. ft.

Joy Balcony Cabin

Enjoy easy access to all the delicious dining and exciting activities on board from your stateroom that includes two lower beds that convert to a queen-size bed.

Accommodates: 2-4
Total Approx. Size: 213 - 364 sq. ft.
Balcony Size: 38-90 sq. ft.

Norwegian Cruise Line Joy Deck Plans

Click here to view Norwegian Cruise Line's Joy's deck plans on the NCL website.

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