Coastal Gems of America - Southbound

Halifax, Canada - Miami, USA

This expedition, taking you along North America’s Eastern seaboard, offers a striking variety of cultures, historic sites and dramatic natural scenery. Starting in Halifax, we discover Maine’s magnificent coast and hike in the wilderness, sail into New York to experience the Big Apple, and visit Charleston, before completing our journey in Miami.

  • Visit Boston, New York, Charleston and Miami
  • Experience the small town charm of Maine
  • Sail almost 1400 nautical miles along the east coast of America
  • Enjoy culture, history and natural beauty


America has been “discovered” a few times the last millennia, starting with Norsemen coming across Newfoundland around 986 A.D. Almost 500 years later, Joao Vaz Core-Real probably also reached Newfoundland. Of course, Columbus reached the “new world” further south in 1492, launching the colonization of America. Now it’s your turn to discover the eastern seaboard of America, from Halifax in Canada to Miami in south. 

The Maine voyage of discovery

Maine is New England at its most iconic. The sea looms large here, with mile upon mile of jagged sea cliffs, peaceful harbors and pebbled beaches. It is truly more than just lobsters, lighthouses and picturesque ports. To see what this part of the coast is all about, we visit Bar Harbor, Bucksport and Rockland to take a close look at their small town charm and a national park with mountains, lakes, forests and gorgeous coastal landscape. 

Big city life

Boston is next, and you have time to discover some of the must-see sites and charming cobbled streets. There’s history and culture around every bend in Boston.  Skyscrapers nestle next to historic houses in this city that manages to blend past and present in an artful and welcoming way. Then it is time to find some peace and quiet in Newport, where you can enjoy walks along the cliffs and lovely architecture.

After a day at sea, we sail past the Statue of Liberty and into New York. Here you spend two days exploring The Big Apple and it’s endless sights, attractions, culture, food and energy. Then we sail even further south to experience southern charm, history and a rich way of life in Charleston. As we reach Miami we end a journey covering 1400 nautical miles of the American east coast.

Price includes: 

  • Hurtigruten Expedition in cabin grade of your choice on a full board basis
  • Wind- and water-resistant jacket
  • Landings with small boats and activities on board and ashore
  • Professional English-speaking Expedition team that gives lectures as well as accompany landings and activities
  • Free tea and coffee 

Not included: 

  • International flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Luggage handling
  • Optional Excursions and Gratuities

Related voyages


The itinerary

This is an expedition where the elements rule, and the weather, wind and ice conditions will determine our schedule. Safety is paramount and the captain will decide the final sailing itinerary during the voyage. Hence, this itinerary is just an indication of what you can experience and why every expedition with Hurtigruten is unique.

08 October 2018

Departs from Halifax
Day 1
Day 1_Halifax.jpg

An urban centre, a magnificent seacoast and rich history

Location: Halifax

While the area around Halifax has been inhabited by native Mi'kmaq peoples for millennia, modern Halifax was founded in 1749 as a British military outpost. Today it is Atlantic Canada’s entertainment and cultural capital, melding the old and new worlds. Modern office towers of glass and steel stand beside historic buildings that once stored the booty of privateers. Located on the second largest natural harbour in the world, life here revolves around the sea and the surrounding areas offer plenty of fun activities on land, water and in the air. Spend some time to explore this vibrant urban centre resting on the edge of nature before embarking on MS Fram to sail south along the American coast.

Dat 2

Exploration day

Location: At sea

Our experienced captains, along with expedition leaders and local experts, will create unique stops in destinations normal cruise ships are not able to deliver. These might be special landing sites to go for walks and launch our kayaks, or community visits, or perhaps stops to watch wildlife.

Day 3
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When in Maine…

Location: Bar Harbour

Adventure, romance, rocky coast and soaring granite cliffs; there is a special mystique to Bar Harbor. Surrounded by Acadia National Park and perched on the edge of the sea, this little community offers tons of charm. Bar Harbor is the artistic, culinary, and social center of Mount Desert Island. Around the turn of the last century, the island was known as a summer haven for the very rich because of its cool breezes. Today, Bar Harbor´s shops are clustered along Main, Mount Desert, and Cottage streets; take a stroll down West Street, a National Historic District, where you can see some fine old houses. One of Bar Harbor’s many attractions is its close proximity to Acadia National Park with over 50 square miles of mountains, lakes, hiking and biking trails, amazing views and dramatic coastline. We aim to catch the sunrise from the top of Cadillac Mountain, the highest point on the east coast of the U.S., offering magnificent views of the glaciated coastal and island landscape.

Day 4-5
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Two typical small towns in Maine

Location: Rockland/Bucksport

As we continue sailing south, we reach Bucksport, located on the Penobscot River, home to approximately 5,000 people. Across the bay, is Fort Knox, one of the largest fortifications on the New England seacoast. A major feature of Bucksport is the Downtown Waterfront Walkway and an old railroad station that now houses the local Historical Society. Here you can learn about the town’s eventful past through photos, exhibits and lore, including the legend of a witch’s curse placed upon the town’s founder, Jonathan Buck. To this very day, evidence of the curse can be seen on the Buck Monument located on Route 1. Stroll in this typical American small town and enjoy the charming atmosphere. Sailing further down the coast, we come to Rockland, a beautiful coastal town in Maine situated alongside Penobscot Bay. Rockland is known for its lobster fishing industry and deep harbour, dotted with hundreds of inlets and coves. Downtown Rockland has great architecture among its historic homes and shops. There are plenty of tasty cafes and restaurants here serving local seafood, of course. Rockland is also home to The Farnsworth Art Museum and Wyeth Center, with an impressive collection of Maine art. With beautiful mountains, scenic waterways, charming wineries and pristine Atlantic beaches, Rockland offers so many options for outdoor activities.

Day 6
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The Cradle of Liberty and Beantown

Location: Boston

Boston can be described as one large outdoor museum. As we arrive, Boston Harbour provides a spectacular scenic backdrop to the city, and its 34 islands provide an exciting urban-adventure destination. Walk the Freedom Trail and you'll quickly get a sense of the city's revolutionary spirit and history. As you follow the redbrick road, from the Boston Common to the Bunker Hill Monument you pass 16 sites where dramatic history was played out. Be sure to explore some of Boston's fine museums and old neighbourhoods. The city´s most magnificent architecture is clustered around Back Bay plaza, symbolic of the culture and learning that gave Boston its nickname; the “Athens of America”. Harvard Square is a rich source of colonial and revolutionary history. Lined with mansions that were once home to royal sympathizers, it earned the nickname Tory Row. This is where you find Harvard, founded in 1636, the oldest university in the U.S. Throughout Harvard Square, street musicians perform on the sidewalks and in the parks, and there are live performances in many of the clubs. Follow the brick sidewalks to an eclectic mix of book and music stores, performing arts theatres and museums. Exploring on an empty stomach is never a good idea. Lucky Boston is America’s seafood capital, famed for clam chowder and lobster with a rich mix of ethnic flavours from all corners of the world.

Day 7
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The ocean state

Location: Newport

Founded in 1639, Newport, Rhode Island is considered to be a shining gem in the coastal crown of New England. It is home to spectacular coastal scenery, awe-inspiring architecture, a thriving waterfront downtown and welcoming hospitality. Tour the famed Gilded Age mansions that once were the summer playground for socialite families with names like Astor and Vanderbilt or enjoy wine tasting at Newport's three scenic vineyards. Hop on a ride through Newport’s downtown and along iconic Ocean Drive, discover Colonial architecture or explore the tunnels at Fort Adams – America’s largest coastal fortification. Experience the world-renowned Cliff Walk, a path tracing the edge of the Atlantic Ocean offering views of opulent Newport mansions, or stroll the city’s historic Old Quarter. Join fascinating walking tours or experience natural wonders like Hanging Rock, where American author, poet, philosopher and naturalist Henry David Thoreau found inspiration. The Norman Bird Sanctuary boasts 325 acres and seven miles of trails that wind through diverse habitats. Newport has earned an enviable reputation as a culinary hot spot. Newport chefs create local delicacies by working with area farmers, foragers and fishermen, making amazing dishes highlighting seasonal ingredients, so eat your heart out!

Day 8-9
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The big apple never sleeps

Location: New York

For the many immigrants who flocked from Europe to New York, the Statue of Liberty was the first image they saw of the USA. The statue was a gift from the French government for the 100th anniversary of America's Independence. We sail past this icon of freedom on our way to New York, where we will dock for the next two days. Use MS Fram as your basecamp when exploring this bustling city. You might choose to take a trip to cross the Brooklyn Bridge by foot. The bridge was built between 1869 and 1883, connects Brooklyn with Manhattan, and is one of the most famous and magnificent landmarks in New York City. While you are here, you will see that New York is indeed a melting pot of many cultures. You'll find neighborhoods filled with people of various ethnic backgrounds. One of the most popular areas with visitors is Little Italy, where you can experience the sights and smells of The Old Country. Right next to Little Italy you will find one of the North America's largest Chinatowns. The Chinese immigrants who decided to call the burgeoning city their new home founded this neighbourhood in the 1870s. Further north on Manhattan is Times Square, the nexus of New York, known for Broadway theatres, cinemas and huge electronic billboards. This is one of those places that make New York the city that never sleeps. More than any other, the Empire State Building embodies the ambition of humans to build towers that reach for the skies. The skyscraper is probably New York's best-known building. At the beginning of the twentieth century, the race for the world's tallest building started in earnest with several developers in New York vying for the coveted title. The Chrysler Building was the first building to top, beating out the then tallest structure, the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Another famous structure is The Flatiron Building. This iconic twenty-one-story building, best known for its triangular shape, was one of the spectacular early high-rises that have come to define Manhattan. New York's Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is often considered the most important museum of its kind in the world. Its collection includes works from a wide range of celebrated modern artists, including Andy Warhol, van Gogh and Picasso. Central Park is one of those places that make New York such a great place to live. The huge green space, 341 hectares, is located in the center of the city, and its design has served as the model for city parks around the world. New York's Fifth Avenue is best known as an unrivaled shopping street, with almost every upscale retailer hosting a prestigious store here. But not all of Fifth Avenue is shopping-centric, as along Central Park, Fifth Avenue becomes a residential street with interesting museums. The main building of the New York Public Library is worth visiting as one of the most magnificent early twentieth century architectural landmarks. Enjoy all that New York has to offer. Fitting it all in two days is impossible, but it´s great fun to try.

Day 10
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Lectures, photo courses and relaxing

Location: At sea

As we continue sailing south the expedition staff will start the lecture programme. The lecture program covers topics related to the areas we sail in, but a central point for these lectures are the environmental challenges of the world’s oceans and climate change. If you are interested in photography, the expedition photographer will show you the basics of expedition photography and there might also be a chance to look behind the scenes and partake in our guest expedition staff program. You will have time to just enjoy being on board the ship.

Day 11
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Indulge yourself in the old-South feeling

Location: Charleston

Charleston overflows with history. In this lovely city you can stand on the site where the first shot was fired in the Civil War. Take a horse drawn carriage tour to conjure an earlier era, see the historic district and the great sites that have shaped Charleston. Discover this romantic and laid back, but also sophisticated city with an old-Southern feel. Stroll down Rainbow Row, with its candy-colored houses, one of the most photographed areas of town. Visit Aiken-Rhett House - the only surviving urban plantation of Charleston. Here you get a fascinating glimpse into antebellum life. The role of slaves is also presented, and you can enter their quarters behind the main house. See Ryan's Mart, an open-air market that auctioned off African men, women and children in the mid 1800s. It's now a museum about South Carolina's shameful past. For first-hand stories, listen to the oral recollections of former slave Elijah Green and others. Situated next to this museum you find Old Exchange & Provost Dungeon, which was used as a prison for pirates and for American patriots held by the British during the Revolutionary War. This cramped space sits beneath a stately Georgian Palladian customs house and was completed in 1771. Charleston Museum was founded in 1773, and exhibits spotlight various periods of Charleston's long and storied history. Artifacts include a whale skeleton, slave tags and the 'secession table' used for the signing of the state's secession documents - and a polar bear! Another great tip is checking out “The Gateway Walk”, a little-known garden path between Archdale St and Philadelphia Alley, that connects four of the city's most beautiful historic churches: the white-columned St John's Lutheran Church; the Gothic Revival Unitarian Church; the striking Romanesque Circular Congregational Church, originally founded in 1681; and St Philip's Church, with its picturesque steeple and 17th-century graveyard, parts of which were once reserved for 'strangers and transient white persons.' There are so many blossoming gardens, so many photo opportunities, so many sights and so many reasons to explore Charleston.

Day 12
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Unwind with a view

Location: At sea

A day at sea means you can join the lectures by the expedition team, spend time on deck or in the Panorama lounge with fellow travellers. Enjoy a refreshing workout in our well-equipped fitness room with a panoramic ocean view or let your muscles relax in one of the outdoor whirlpools.

Day 13
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Beaches, glamour, Art Deco and fusion food

Location: Miami

Miami is known for its glamour, Art Deco buildings and spectacular beaches. In this city, the multi-cultural environment creates a dynamic atmosphere with vibes from Latin America, the Caribbean, Asia and Europe. And the food! A heady mix of flavours all over the world makes dining out in Miami an experience not to be missed. Try giant crabs, pollo con platano, corn-fed beef, BBQ, gourmet burgers, Key Lime Pie or a Cuban coffee in Little Havana to have a real taste of Miami. You can also venture outside the city to the nearby Everglades National Park, known for its unique ecosystem and wildlife, before you fly home.

20 October 2018

Location Miami
Your ship Things to see and do

Excursions on your voyage

Challenge your inner explorer and experience everything North America has to offer with our diverse range of optional excursions. They can be pre-booked or bought on board if there is capacity left.

Extend your holiday