Plenty of cruises cast off for ports in Argentina, Chile

Q and A

Q&a

February 26, 2006|By SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS

Do you have information on cruises sailing between Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Santiago, Chile? What is the best month for travel?

Several cruise lines including Princess, Celebrity, Silversea, Holland America and Oceania cruise the South American waters between Buenos Aires and Valparaiso, Chile, from December to March, when it's summer south of the equator. Cruises typically range from 13 to 16 days.

Depending on which cruise you take, ports of call can include Puerto Montt, Chile; Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands; Ushuaia (Tierra del Fuego), Argentina; and Montevideo, Uruguay. You'll also cruise around Cape Horn and through the Strait of Magellan.

Cruises tend to be port-intensive, so you will only spend about four days at sea. But there are plenty of port excursions at every stop.

Prices range from $1,845 per person on the 13-day Princess cruise to $7,985 for the 15-day trip offered by Silversea.

Be sure to ask for a cabin on the starboard side if you are going from Argentina to Chile or a port side cabin if you are headed the other way. It will ensure you have the best views of mountains and landscapes in both countries.

My husband and I are taking our 7-year-old son on a Mediterranean cruise. What documents does he need to join us?

You will need a passport for your son before leaving. Check the U.S. State Department's Web site (travel.state.gov) for a list of requirements for children younger than 14. Click on the "Passports" heading, then go to the section "Get or Renew Passport" and click on "Minors under age 14."

You can download an application from the site and take it and your son's birth certificate to a passport agency (nearby locations can be found on the site). Both parents should be present and must show parental identification such as a valid driver's license or passport.

Don't sign the application form until the passport acceptance agent tells you to do so.

The passport price is $82.

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