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Historic South & Golden Isles

Historic South & Golden Isles

At a glance

Duration: 8 Days, 7 Nights

Coverage: Charleston, SC to Jacksonville, FL

From: $3,860

Season: February-May, November - December

Activities: History, Wildlife

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American Cruise Lines

The Historic South & Golden Isles cruise will bring you to a veritable Garden of Eden as you cruise along the Golden Isles of the Intracoastal Waterway. These small ships glide smoothly past magnificent parks and plantations to centuries-old towns clustered at water’s edge with terraced landscapes and opulent gardens. The scenery, warmed by the temperate climate, unfolds before you redolent of charm and gracious living. Many coastal wildlife preserves along the waterway provide naturalists ample opportunity to view the wide variety of shore birds and waterfowl as well as moss-draped oaks, secluded inlets and sparkling bays.

There are layers of history along this fabled thoroughfare, captured in the ancient names of its rivers, the Ashepoo, Stono and Ogeechee. European colonists brought English, French and Spanish influences evident in place names and in colonial architecture.

Charleston is a revelation, full of flowers and festivity. You’ll be transported to centuries past to explore the crucial role the city played in both the Revolution and the Civil War, to visit the restored Historic District or a lavish 18th-century plantation. When you dock at Savannah’s waterfront, the whole city is at your disposal—America’s first planned city, set out along a grid of 21 squares. Stately homes with wrought iron railings and formal courtyards are testaments to Savannah’s pride of place. And beautiful Beaufort is a small gem, where a leisurely horse and carriage ride awaits you. Here, as on Daufuskie Island, the Gullah culture of freed African-Americans flourished after the Civil War. Their distinctive language and culture survive to this day on Daufuskie, protected by the surrounding waters.

The barrier islands of Hilton Head, St. Simons, Jekyll and Amelia have all enjoyed tremendous popularity due to welcoming warmth, interesting shopping and the relaxed pace of life. All of these attractions led to regular steamboat service from the North and a cosmopolitan migration toward the end of the 19th-century, when titans of commerce and wealthy socialites began building "cottages" for their hunting and fishing pursuits. These extravagant edifices are exemplified by Millionaire’s Row on Jekyll Island, and the Silk Stocking District on Amelia Island. The combination of historical significance and natural loveliness assures a voyage that will enlighten and entrance you, with a unique insight into America’s most elegant region.

My husband and I went on the Historic South Cruise. We had the most wonderful time of our lives!

Day-to-Day Itinerary

Day 1 - Charleston, SC

The scene of major Revolutionary War naval battles, legendary pirate tales, and Civil War sieges, Charleston is brimming with history and culture. Docking in the heart of this "living museum" along the banks of the tranquil Ashley River, you will have the opportunity to truly appreciate Southern antebellum culture. Visit historic Fort Sumter National Monument, experience the African-American influences of the area and stroll through magnificent parks, gardens and plantations. Warm southern breezes, gas lit lamps and cobblestone streets welcome you to the city that is best known as the site where the Civil War began.

Day 2 - Beaufort, SC

Beaufort’s 500-year history includes Spanish and French explorers, Native American inhabitants, British settlements and significant Civil War battles. Today, horse-drawn carriages bring visitors through the narrow streets of the historic district past eighteenth and nineteenth century homes famous for their unique Beaufort style architecture. View tabby ruins, historic forts, elegant homes and majestic plantations and find out why Beaufort was once heralded as the “Newport of the South.”

Day 3 - Hilton Head Island, SC

Recently opened to the public, Daufuskie Island is steeped in history and tradition. Accessible only by boat, the island’s small native population lived an isolated life, having little contact with the outside world and leaving many modern amenities absent from the island. In fact, Daufuskie’s intriguing isolation and fascinating Gullah culture became the inspiration for Pat Conroy’s novel “The Water is Wide”. Throughout the centuries the essence of Daufuskie Island has remained – private, mysterious, divine.

Day 4 - Savannah, GA

With historic city squares, beautiful flowering parks and classic southern grace, Savannah has earned its nickname as “Hostess City of the South”. Recognized as the country’s first planned city, Savannah is still a bustling seaport with renowned historic districts that preserve its phenomenal 19th century wealth and opulence. Join a narrated tour of Savannah’s “Historic and Victorian Districts”, brave an evening Ghost Walk, or explore the magnificent streets alive with music, southern delicacies and exotic shops. Discover why Savannah’s proud history, unbounded natural beauty and festive energy always make this stop a passenger favorite!

Day 5 - St. Simons Island / Sapelo Island, GA

From shady lanes lined with moss-draped oaks to a diverse range of wildlife, St. Simons Island offers passengers a quaint atmosphere with an enthralling past of momentous 18th century battles and sprawling, antebellum plantations. Make sure to visit St. Simons Lighthouse, which houses a fantastic museum devoted to the history of the Georgia Coast. The natural beauty of St. Simons will leave you breathless!

Day 6 - Jekyll Island, GA

Discover the fascinating history of Jekyll Island! At the end of the nineteenth century some of the wealthiest men in America, including J.P. Morgan, Joseph Pulitzer, William Rockefeller and Cornelius Vanderbilt, purchased the entire island as a hunting resort prized for its “splendid isolation”. Today Jekyll Island is part of Georgia’s Sea Isles and boasts “Millionaire’s Village” - 240 acres of extravagant homes and winter cottages recognized as a National Historic Landmark.

Day 7 - Amelia Island, FL

Discover the unspoiled beauty of pristine Amelia Island, with its miles of quartz beaches and rolling sand dunes, surrounded by calm waterways and the Nassau Sound. Throughout its history Amelia Island was home to Spanish explorers, French Huguenots and British settlers before enjoying its "golden age" during the late 1800's when several wealthy Americans relocated to the picturesque island. Once a bustling Victorian seaport, Fernandina Beach, the island's only city, now harbors a treasure trove of history, antiques, and collectibles just steps from your ship. Join a walking tour of Centre Street's Historic District, with 50 blocks of restored 19th century Victorian homes and shops. Or take a leisurely stroll along the shady tree-lined avenues and explore Amelia Island's charm at your own pace.

Day 8 - Jacksonville, FL Area (Amelia Island)

Disembark.

Dates & Rates

Date Departure Location Ship A AA AAL AAC AAM Veranda Owner's Suite Single w/ Balcony Single
Dec 21, 2016 Jacksonville, FL Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Dec 29, 2016 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Feb 18, 2017 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Feb 25, 2017 Jacksonville, FL Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Mar 4, 2017 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Mar 11, 2017 Jacksonville, FL Independence $3,855 -- $4,655 $5,160 -- -- $6,650 $5,195 $4,730
Mar 18, 2017 Charleston, SC Independence $3,855 -- $4,655 $5,160 -- -- $6,650 $5,195 $4,730
Mar 25, 2017 Jacksonville, FL Independence $3,855 -- $4,655 $5,160 -- -- $6,650 $5,195 $4,730
Apr 1, 2017 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Apr 1, 2017 Jacksonville, FL American Star $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 --
Apr 8, 2017 Jacksonville, FL Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Apr 8, 2017 Charleston, SC American Star $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 --
Apr 15, 2017 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Apr 15, 2017 Jacksonville, FL American Star $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 --
Apr 22, 2017 Charleston, SC American Star $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 --
Apr 29, 2017 Jacksonville, FL American Star $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 --
May 6, 2017 Charleston, SC American Star $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 --
Nov 7, 2017 Charleston, SC American Constellation $5,690 $6,450 $6,960 $7,705 $8,520 $9,260 $10,105 $7,815 $7,175
Nov 17, 2017 Charleston, SC American Constellation $5,690 $6,450 $6,960 $7,705 $8,520 $9,260 $10,105 $7,815 $7,175
Nov 18, 2017 Jacksonville, FL Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Nov 25, 2017 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Nov 27, 2017 Charleston, SC American Constellation $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 $5,960 $6,480 $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Dec 2, 2017 Jacksonville, FL Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Dec 4, 2017 Jacksonville, FL American Constellation $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 $5,960 $6,480 $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Dec 9, 2017 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Dec 11, 2017 Charleston, SC American Constellation $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 $5,960 $6,480 $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Dec 23, 2017 Jacksonville, FL American Constellation $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 $5,960 $6,480 $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Dec 30, 2017 Charleston, SC American Constellation $4,100 $4,635 $4,950 $5,490 $5,960 $6,480 $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Feb 17, 2018 Charleston, SC Independence $3,855 -- $4,655 $5,160 -- -- $6,650 $5,195 $4,730
Feb 24, 2018 Jacksonville, FL Independence $3,855 -- $4,655 $5,160 -- -- $6,650 $5,195 $4,730
Mar 3, 2018 Charleston, SC Independence $3,855 -- $4,655 $5,160 -- -- $6,650 $5,195 $4,730
Mar 10, 2018 Jacksonville, FL Independence $3,855 -- $4,655 $5,160 -- -- $6,650 $5,195 $4,730
Mar 17, 2018 Charleston, SC Independence $3,855 -- $4,655 $5,160 -- -- $6,650 $5,195 $4,730
Mar 24, 2018 Jacksonville, FL Independence $3,855 -- $4,655 $5,160 -- -- $6,650 $5,195 $4,730
Mar 31, 2018 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Apr 7, 2018 Jacksonville, FL Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Apr 14, 2018 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Nov 17, 2018 Jacksonville, FL Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Nov 24, 2018 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Dec 1, 2018 Jacksonville, FL Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030
Dec 8, 2018 Charleston, SC Independence $4,100 -- $4,950 $5,490 -- -- $7,075 $5,525 $5,030

*Private Balcony
All rates are shown in US dollars, per person, double occupancy. Itineraries, rates, and ships are subject to change without notice. A deposit of $500.00 per person is required to confirm any reservation on trips of 9 nights or less, and $900.00 per person on trips of 10 nights or more.
Single Occupancy: One person occupying a double stateroom will be charged 150% or 175% of the double occupancy depending on the type of stateroom occupied.

Included in Cruise Fare

  • Cruise and accommodations aboard ship.
  • Meals and snacks onboard ship
  • Complimentary cocktail parties
  • All entertainment.

Not Included in Cruise Fare

  • Airfare to and from your home city
  • Shore tours.
  • Port charges and/or fees
  • Gratituities
  • Fuel charges (if applied to future cruises)

Map

Historic South & Golden Isles

Ships

American Glory

American GloryThe America Glory offers discerning travelers the most unique and modern style of small ship cruising. Each unique and off-the-beaten path port visited gives guests a glimpse into the cultural heritage that is the fabric of our great nation. The country-club atmosphere onboard allows guests to relax, and enjoy the company of fellow travelers who share their interests in American history and culture. The spacious public lounges and observation decks are frequented by guests who wish to mingle with friends new and old. View ship details...


American Star

American StarThe American Star entered service in June 2007. Similar to the American Spirit, it will offer guests the same unique style of cruising that has become the hallmark of American Cruise Lines. From charming small towns to gracious southern ports, the American Star brings guests to places of historic interest and magnificent beauty. Onboard, each guest will be able to unwind in the friendly and accommodating atmosphere created by the staff. View ship details...


Indepenence

IndepenenceAmerican Cruise Lines is proud to introduce the Independence, the newest addition to the ACL fleet. While the passenger capacity will be the same as the American Star and American Spirit, the size of the ship will be larger, enabling the interior areas, including the staterooms and balconies to be even more spacious and deluxe. The Independence will also be fully stabilized, with Rolls Royce stabilizers, allowing American Cruise Lines to reach even more fascinating destinations in smooth comfort. View ship details...

Cruise Reviews

American Star - November 2010

Historic South & Golden IslesLinda, we can't thank you enough for all the arranging you did for our group of 20. Your arrangement of our 10 cabins across from each other and in a row allowed us to have our own little party at the end of the ship. We would all open our doors and go from one room to another with our drink in hand. We were quiet and respected other passengers who ended up joining us in our fun times. We made the best friends and plan to sail with them again on another American Cruise Lines sailing.

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American Spirit - May 2010

Historic South & Golden IslesMy wife and I are world travelers. We decided to try something closer to home. We did not need a passport, and we were able to drive to Charleston where we met our lovely ship the American Spirit. I am a Civil War history buff, and my wife loves plantation homes, and we are both foodies. This seemed like the perfect cruise for us, and it turned out to exceed our expectations.

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