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Sao Tome

Unspoilt Wilds of Southwest Africa

Example 15 Day Cruise aboard SH Vega
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Join this 15-day Unspoilt Wilds of Southwest Africa cruise aboard SH Vega that departs from the Southern African country of Angola and sails up the Atlantic coast via the Central African countries of Congo and Sao Tome to West Africa’s Benin and Togo, finally arriving on the Gold Coast in Ghana. Experience a pristine, biodiverse shoreline that harbors volcanic islands, mangrove forests, rainforests, beaches, and lagoons, where elephants, lowland gorillas, leopards, hippos, and chimpanzees live. In West Africa, meet the people and dive deeper into cultures where voodoo is a state religion. Encounter unique customs and landscapes in some of the least-visited parts of Africa.
Loango National ParkLoango National ParkSao Tome Island TourSao TomeSao TomeSao Tome
Highlights
  • Savor traditional cuisine & mingle with Congolese at Grand Marché market
  • Learn about conservation efforts in Congo’s biodiverse Conkouati Reserve
  • Spot wildlife in Gabon's South Loango National Park
  • Discover the world's oldest voodoo market, showcasing animal skins, skulls
Places Visited
  • Africa
  • West Africa
  • Angola
  • Benin
  • Congo
  • Cotonou
  • Ghana
  • Lome
  • Luanda
  • Pointe-Noire
  • Sao Tome & Principe
  • Tema
  • Togo
Activity Level: Relaxed
Involves minimal physical effort and is typically associated with leisurely activities. Activities are low-intensity or last less than a few hours each day.
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Luanda

Arrive in Luanda, relax, and spend the overnight here preparing for your adventure.

*specific hotel and location to be announced

Day 2: Luanda | Embark

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Dinner
As Angola emerges from years of colonial rule and a long Civil War, its capital Luanda is fast becoming a forward-looking city with a rich heritage. Delve into its colonial past at the Old City’s Portuguese-style buildings and the 16th-century Fortress of São Miguel. Museums across the city offer a glimpse of local culture through their exhibits of traditional art, hunting equipment, and masks. At Ilha do Cabo, chic seaside steak restaurants and bars showcase a modern side of the city.

Day 3: Day At Sea

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Days at sea are the perfect chance to relax, unwind and do whatever takes your fancy. So whether that is going to the gym, visiting the spa, trying to spot a whale from the deck, reading a chapter or two, or simply topping up your tan, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to the green days spent exploring on land.

Day 4-6: Pointe-Noire

  • Ship
  • 3 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 3 Dinners
The Republic of Congo’s second city offers up a slice of French Africa with two distinct quarters – European and African. Explore lively La Cité on foot, sampling traditional cuisine and stopping in at the vibrant Grand Marché for a glimpse of local life. Relax at a waterfront restaurant at Côté Sauvage – a laid-back city beach. Just outside the city, the Diosso Gorge offers tropical rainforest and sweeping views of red canyons.

Day 7: Day At Sea

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Sea days are rarely dull. Take the time to sit back and let the world go by. The ship’s observation decks provide stunning views of the passing ocean. A day at sea gives you the opportunity to mingle with other passengers and share your experiences of this incredible trip or head to the library which is stocked full of reference books. Get an expert’s view in one of your onboard lectures or perhaps perfect your photography skills with invaluable advice from your onboard professional photographers.

Day 8-9: Port-Gentil

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Port-Gentil is located in Gabon, on the west coast of Africa. It is known for its beautiful beaches and rich culture. Visitors can enjoy various activities in Port-Gentil, including swimming, sunbathing, and exploring the city’s many museums and art galleries. Port-Gentil is an excellent place for those interested in African culture and history.

Day 10: Sao Tome, Sao Tome

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today you arrive at a tropical idyll with lush rainforests, beaches, and waterfalls. São Tomé island is the largest in a collection of far-flung volcanic isles that straddle the equator in the Gulf of Guinea. São Tomé Peak rises to 2,024 m, and on its slopes, you may also spot some of the island’s bird species such as the ibis and grosbeak. The capital city of São Tomé has 15th-century Portuguese architecture and a long colonial history.

Day 11: Santo Antonio, Principe

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This laid-back, compact capital has less than 3,000 inhabitants and is the smallest city in the world (according to the Guinness Book of Records). Time seems to move more slowly in this dream-like place with its pastel-colored buildings and salty sea air. Pay a visit to the Nossa Senhora da Conceição church with the beautiful stone carving of St Anthony, the city’s namesake saint, inside.

Day 12: Day At Sea

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Sea days are rarely dull. Take the time to sit back and let the world go by. The ship’s observation decks provide stunning views of the passing ocean. A day at sea gives you the opportunity to mingle with other passengers and share your experiences of this incredible trip or head to the library which is stocked full of reference books. Get an expert’s view in one of your onboard lectures or perhaps perfect your photography skills with invaluable advice from your onboard professional photographers.

Day 13: Cotonou

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Benin’s vibrant port city is defined by its colonial legacy and voodoo (the state religion). As a former French colony, Cotonou retains a certain European flair in its cuisine and architecture. For an insight into local culture, there’s no better place than the sprawling Dantokpa market, filled with local crafts and an entire section devoted to sacred voodoo items. Along the lakeshore, visit Ganvie, a lake village with bamboo houses and the world’s only town on stilts, where residents get around in canoes.

Day 14: Lome

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Voodoo traditions, colonial history, and beautiful beaches: Togo’s capital city offers plenty of history, culture, and outdoor fun. Learn about the country’s heritage at the National Museum, housing artifacts like pottery, masks, and Togolese art. Akodessewa Fetish Market, selling animal skins and voodoo talismans, offers a fascinating insight into the region’s traditional customs. Trace the country’s colonial past at the Sacred Heart Cathedral, built by the Germans, and the Independence Monument, a symbol of the country’s freedom gained in 1960.

Day 15: Tema (Accra) | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
Sail into the coastal city of Tema, a short drive from Ghana’s buzzing capital, Accra. Once named ‘Africa’s Capital of Cool’ by the New York Times, Accra has become one of West Africa’s top destination cities. Marvel at the towering statues in the city’s Black Star Square, wander through Kwame Nkrumah National Park, the resting place of Ghana’s first prime minister and president, or shop for locally made arts and crafts in the Centre for National Culture.

Ship/Hotel

SH Vega

SH Vega
SH Vega Club Lounge
SH Vega Club Lounge

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Deals

Save 50% Off The Second Guest 23025
Book by February 29, 2024, and save 50% off your second guest on select 2024-2025 departures across all stateroom categories. This promotion is subject to availability and cannot be combined with any other promotion. Additional restrictions may apply. Please contact us for details.
Applies to Apr 4, 2024 departure

Per person starting at
$17,801
SH Vega Suite OceanViewOceanview
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Oceanview D4
19 m2, Oceanview staterooms features 2 single beds, bedroom and living room and a luxurious ensuite bathroom.
SH Vega Suite OceanViewOceanview
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Oceanview M4
19 m2, Oceanview staterooms features 2 single beds, bedroom and living room and a luxurious ensuite bathroom.
Balcony
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Balcony D5
28 m2, Located at the forward and aft of the ship, these balcony staterooms feature 2 single beds or double bed bedrooms with a living room area, a luxurious bathroom and your own private 6m2 balcony
Balcony
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Balcony M5
28 m2, Located at the center of the ship, these balcony staterooms feature 2 single beds or double bed bedrooms with a living room area, a luxurious bathroom and your own private 6m2 balcony
Balcony
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Balcony D6
28 m2, Located on deck six, these balcony staterooms feature 2 single beds or double bed bedroom with living room area, a luxurious bathroom and your own private 6m2 balcony
SH Vega SuitePremium suitePremium Suite
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Suite
44 m2, Our Suites features a super king bed and separate living room with and a soothing flame-effect fireplace a luxurious ensuite bathroom, and a 12 sq.m. private balcony.
SH Vega Suite PremiumSH Vega Suite PremiumPremium suitePremium Suite
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Premium Suite
49 m2, Our grandest suites feature a super king bed and separate living room with and a soothing flame-effect fireplace a luxurious ensuite bathroom, a spacious walk-in wardrobe, and a 12 sq.m private balcony.

Notes

At Swan Hellenic, we want to ensure your experience with us is an effortless experience, leaving you to make the most from your expedition, which is why we have included the following within your cruise fare:
 
  • One Night pre-cruise accommodations with breakfast in a 4/5-star hotel or Onboard
  • All transfers between Airport, Hotel and Ship
  • Room service 24 hours a day
  • Coffee, tea, soft drinks & select alcoholic beverages 24 hours a day
  • Lecture programs by our experienced expedition team and guest speakers
  • Standard WIFI inclusion
  • Onboard gratuities & port taxes
  • One shore excursion per port of call

Additional inclusion for: Antarctica & Arctic
  • Use of Rubber boots for shore landings
  • Branded Swan Hellenic expedition parka
  • Flights included roundtrip Buenos Aires - Ushuaia
Included
  • 14 Breakfasts, 12 Lunches, 13 Dinners
  • 14 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Room Service 
  • Wifi
  • Coffee, tea, soft drinks and selected alcoholic beverages available 24-hours per day
  • Lecture programs by our experienced expedition team and guest speakers
  • Onboard gratuities & port taxes
  • Branded Swan Hellenic expedition parka and use of rubber boots in Polar Regions.
  • All transfers between Airport, Hotel and Ship
  • One night pre-cruise accommodation with breakfast in a 4/5-star hotel or onboard
Excluded
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Passport and Applicable Visa Expenses
  • We recommend every traveler to take out a travel cancellation insurance, travel interruption insurance and a travel health insurance policy with an assumption of the return transport costs of repatriation

Map

When to Go

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.

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Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!
Meyer Smolen

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