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Travel Blog

Blog post March 7, 2023
AmaWaterways will launch two ships on the Magdalena River in 2024.

Image by Dina Paz Cabrera on Pixabay

AmaWaterways will launch two ships on the Magdalena River in 2024.

AmaWaterways adds two striking ships to riverboat fleet

Vessels set to debut in 2024 on Colombia's Magdelana River

Family-owned AmaWaterways will be the first river cruise company to sail the magnificent Magdalena River in Colombia in 2024 when it debuts  its AmaMagdalena and AmaMelodia.  This is good news for riverboat lovers looking for adventures on new vessels.

“We are absolutely thrilled to have two beautiful ships joining our growing fleet of 26 award-winning river cruise ships and share details on the new itineraries cruising between Cartagena and Barranquilla along the Magdalena River,” said Rudi Schreiner, co-founder and president of AmaWaterways.

“Everything, from the design of our two stunning ships to the immersive curated itineraries, reflects our pioneering spirit and mission to provide our guests with top-of-the-line accommodations, warm and welcoming services, locally inspired cuisine and enriching experiences engaging with local communities along this fascinating river,” added Kristin Karst, co-founder and executive vice president of AmaWaterways. “We are extremely grateful for our travel advisor partners and loyal guests who continue to support us and are as excited to discover this new continent for river cruising.”   

Launch times

Ama Magdalena launches on March 30, 2024, and Ama Melodia hits the river on  June 19, 2024. The ships are specifically  designed to maximize the picturesque views along the Magdalena River. AmaMagdalena offers a 60-guest capacity. AmaMelodia can host 64.

Both vessels are fitted with spacious staterooms that range from 237 to 516 square feet. All boast  AmaWaterways signature twin balcony design with both a French balcony and an outside balcony. Public spaces include a sundeck pool, spa and fitness room.  

Immersive itineraries 

Starting in spring 2024,the line will offer two seven-night itineraries, Magic of Colombia and Wonders of Colombia, sailing between Cartagena and Barranquilla. Both itineraries provide curated experiences and unforgettable excursions. 

Highlights on these two itineraries include: 

  • Uncovering the soul and spirit of the “Land of a Thousand Rhythms” at a special Carnaval celebration in Barranquilla featuring vibrant live performances reserved exclusively for AmaWaterways guests. 
  • Exploring the country’s most fascinating cities through historical walking tours in destinations including Mompox, a UNESCO site preserved in colonial charm, where guests will be welcomed by an exclusive jazz performance.
  • Birdwatching tours will captivate guests with more than 1,900 species of birds including the Cianeguo hummingbirds and the Chauna chavaria – only found in the Colombia region.  
  • Visiting Palenque, historically named the first “free city” in the Americas,where guests will enjoy dancing to world renowned musical styles such as cumbia and vallenato during a Drum Rhythms and Freedom Historical tour.  
  • Riding an authentic paola through the town of Calamar.  
  • Witnessing the natural beauty of the great Magdalena basin, which harbors many species of flora and fauna not found anywhere else on the planet.

While in Colombia, travelers have the opportunity to make the most of their time and extend their journey with AmaWaterways’ optional pre-cruise land packages in Medellín and Cartagena, and post-cruise land package in Panama City, Panama.  

In Medellín, guests can start their journey with a three-night stay in Colombia’s second largest city. Guests will enjoy indulging in the refined flavors of Medellín’s famous coffee and cuisine during a Coffee Region Tour and Tasting, as well as discover its unique heritage with friendly guides and residents from diverse backgrounds who live beyond the riverbanks. Combining innovation and history into one beautiful destination, travelers will witness the incredible transformation that the city has undergone while visiting neighborhoods such as Comuna 13. 

AmaWaterways’ two-night pre-cruise land package in the thriving city of Cartagena takes guests for a deep dive into the city’s royal history and heritage. Travelers will be inspired by the city that has withstood the test of time and the plundering of pirates through a walled city walking tour, and amazed by the excursions to the Gold Museum, Caribbean Naval Museum and San Felipe Castle.

There's a post-cruise land package to the beautiful isthmus where North and South America meet in Panama City, Panama, that extends the river cruise experience by three nights and allows for time in the Amador Causeway, the historic buildings of Panama La Vieja. It also allows time to walk traipse through the tropical rainforest of the Chagres National Park, where they can delight in the breathtaking scenery of the jungle and learn more about the indigenous Emberá people.  

Patti Pietschmann
I'm the LA Travel Diva and spend time cruising with first mate Richard, traveling the world, reviewing fine restaurants, going to plays, movies and events. It's the good life.