Windstar Cruises, which operates a three-ship fleet of luxury yachts that explore hidden harbors and secluded coves of the world’s most treasured destinations, offers guests exceptional opportunities to experience Costa Rica with its lush jungles, pristine beaches and abundant wildlife or the legendary Panama Canal.

Travelers on Windstar Cruises can choose from 13 7-day sailings roundtrip from Puerto Caldera, Costa Rica aboard Wind Star during December through March.  On November 29, Wind Star offers a 14-day sailing between Barbados and Puerto Caldera featuring a cruise through the Panama Canal.

On the 7-day roundtrip sailing from Puerto Caldera, a variety of ports are offered in Costa Rica: Playas del Coco, Quepos, Bahía Drake, Curu and Tortuga Island. The cruise also stops at San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua.  On the 14-day sailing guests depart Barbados and cruise to Puerto Caldera visiting Bequia, The Grenadines; Charlotteville, Tobago; Isla Margarita, Venezuela; Kralendijk, Bonaire; Oranjestad, Aruba; and San Blas Islands, Panama.

Two new shore excursions are now available on Windstar’s 14-day cruise through the Panama Canal. In Isla de Margarita, a new 4-Wheel Drive Highlights and Beach Tour is offered where guests board their 4-Wheel Drive vehicle at the pier and travel across the island’s arid landscape to the mountains en route to the village of El Valle. Also included is a short hike through a cloud forest, a drive to the capital city of Las Asunción to see Bolívar Square and the cathedral and a stop at lovely beach.

In Kralendijk, an ATV Off-Road Adventure is offered which explores the east coast of Bonaire and the Washikemba Reservoir area’s rugged terrain complete with wild donkeys, goats and iguanas. Guests also visit Spelonk Lighthouse, take a refreshing dip in a natural lava rock Jacuzzi and stop at Suplado Blowhole.

Cruise rates begin at $2,049 per person, based on double occupancy on the 7-day sailing and $3,799 per person, double occupancy on the 14-day sailing. Visit www.windstarcruises.com for additional information and rates on shore excursions which can be booked easily 24 hours a day.

A leader in defining the small ship luxury cruise experience for the last 20 years, Windstar has won the allegiance of a new generation of contemporary travelers who appreciate the line’s casual attire, alternative dining venues, rich mix of shore excursions, complimentary water sports program, deluxe spa facilities and luxurious accommodations.

Windstar’s award-wining reputation for sophisticated, yet casual elegance has been recognized by some of the most notable names in the travel world. Celebrated Living, American Airlines’ prestigious publication for first class passengers, named Windstar Cruises “Best Small-Ship/Mid-Ship Cruise Line” on their 2008 Platinum List for the second time in a row. Readers of Porthole Cruise Magazine awarded Windstar “Most Romantic Cruise Line” and “Best Tall Ship” in the 9th Annual Readers’ Choice Awards. Windstar has also earned top honors in Travel + Leisure’s World’s 2008 Best Awards and was lauded among “The World’s Best Small Ships” by Condé Nast Traveler readers in 2008.