Discover the enduring appeal of Maine's magnificent coastline, an inspiration for evocative seascape paintings by renowned American artists, during this popular cruise.

Starting at: $6,395 * Price includes special offer Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Portland Head Light, Maine. Credit: Courtesy Maine Tourism Bureau  <i>Pulling the Dory</i> by Winslow Homer. Credit: Farnsworth Art Museum  <i>Weatherbeaten</i> by Winslow Homer, Portland Museum of Art. Credit: Erin Little  Gallery at the Portland Museum of Art. Credit: Erin Little, Portland Museum of Art  Gallery at the Portland Museum of Art. Credit: Portland Museum of Art  Andrew Wyeth, <i>Her Room</i>. Credit: Farnsworth Art Museum  N.C. Wyeth, <i>Morris House</i>. Credit: Farnsworth Art Museum  Artist at work in Camden. Credit: Courtesy Maine Tourism Bureau  Bar Harbor, Maine  Traditional decor in Maine  Bar Harbor Shops  Curtis Island Light, Camden  Schooners and breakwater in Rockland. Credit: Courtesy Maine Tourism Bureau  Lighthouse off the coast of Maine  Schoodic area of Acadia National Park, Maine. Credit: Courtesy Maine Tourism Bureau  View from Cadillac Mountain, Acadia National Park  Portland Head Light

Art Along the Coast of Maine

A Round-trip Cruise from Portland

9 days from $6,645

Discover the enduring appeal of Maine's magnificent coastline, an inspiration for evocative seascape paintings by renowned American artists, during this popular cruise.

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

I like the combination of a small cruise ship with the educational aspect of the Smithsonian. The group was small enough to allow everyone to mingle. The emphasis was on art, and it allowed me the opportunity to explore art collections I wouldn't normally have access to. 

- Previous Journeys Traveler

Fascinating experience, good company, enriched by educational component. 

- Previous Journeys Traveler

Breathtaking natural beauty coupled with excellent education regarding American artists who painted in Maine.

- Ken H.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

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Accommodations

* Click on hotel name to visit hotel web-site.

Holiday Inn Portland by the Bay

Portland, United States

Set along the beautiful shores of Casco Bay, the Holiday Inn® Portland by the Bay’s location combines convenience, entertainment, and beauty to create the perfect environment for every traveler. Offering a waterfront view that extends to the Calendar Islands, the hotel's setting fully captures the beauty and culture of Maine. The hotel's location provides a variety of entertainment options for its guests. The Old Port District is just a short walk away. The Holiday Inn® Portland by the Bay includes a beautiful indoor pool and sauna where guests can relax. Fantastic cuisine awaits at the on-site Port of Call restaurant. Rooms are welcoming with all up-to-date amenities including complimentary Wi-Fi.

Number of nights: 1

Activity Level

Activity Level 2: Moderate

Expectations: Coastal cruise that pulls into a pier for disembarkation via gangway. Morning and afternoon excursions off ship via motor coach or guided walks from the pier. Moderate pace. Excursions can be over uneven terrain (e.g. cobblestones, city hills, stairs without handrails, the absence of elevators); some longer walks and extensive walking at museums and historic homes.

Appropriate for: Travelers who are physically fit and comfortable with longer days of touring (both walking tours and coach time).

Special Air Rates/Services

FlexAir is designed to provide you with the flexibility and choice you need to personalize your air travel experience. Explore a wide range of flight options in consultation with our experienced travel professionals to select the flights, routing, class of service, and dates of travel that most fit your needs. Our partner tour operator has negotiated contracts with a wide variety of carriers that allow them to hold flight reservations and then issue your ticket close to departure without additional fees. This protects you from the need to purchase published-fare tickets, which must be ticketed within 24 hours of purchase. FlexAir reservations provide the flexibility to adjust reservations without penalty and to accommodate extensions and upgrades right up until ticketing time, usually around 45 days before departure. We look forward to providing you with more choice and the best possible itinerary for your air travel plans.

Program Includes:

  • Guaranteed transfers between the airport and your overseas accommodations on tour arrival and departure days. We will provide you with all of the details you need to guarantee your transfer.
  • Air schedule change and delay assistance. Book FlexAir to ensure assistance should schedule changes or delays impact your air travel plans.
  • Flight insurance worth up to $250,000, subject to policy terms, is automatically included.
  • Confirmed airline seat assignments at the time of booking (in most cases).
Ship

Independence

The 100-guest Independence was built by Chesapeake Shipbuilding in Salisbury, Maryland. The over-sized staterooms have interior entrances, a king-size bed or two twin beds, spacious bath, large opening picture windows, and most have private balconies. The spacious dining room accommodates all passengers at one seating. Sun decks and glass-enclosed lounges offer comfortable venues for enjoying the passing scenery, and a well-stocked library provides books and videos about our destinations for your educational enrichment.

Independence

The 100-guest Independence was built by Chesapeake Shipbuilding in Salisbury, Maryland. The over-sized staterooms have interior entrances, a king-size bed or two twin beds, spacious bath, large opening picture windows, and most have private balconies. The spacious dining room accommodates all passengers at one seating. Sun decks and glass-enclosed lounges offer comfortable venues for enjoying the passing scenery, and a well-stocked library provides books and videos about our destinations for your educational enrichment.

Testimonials

WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

I like the combination of a small cruise ship with the educational aspect of the Smithsonian. The group was small enough to allow everyone to mingle. The emphasis was on art, and it allowed me the opportunity to explore art collections I wouldn't normally have access to. 

- Previous Journeys Traveler

Fascinating experience, good company, enriched by educational component. 

- Previous Journeys Traveler

Breathtaking natural beauty coupled with excellent education regarding American artists who painted in Maine.

- Ken H.
Reading List

Highly Recommended

Maine in America: American Art at The Farnsworth Art Museum
By: Pamela J. Belanger
Mount Desert, Monhegan Island, Ogunquit, Mount Katahdin, Camden Harbor, the Allagash -- these names evoke varied images of Maine -- images created by such artists as Frederic E. Church, Winslow Homer, Rockwell Kent, John Marin, and Edward Hopper. For much of the 19th and 20th centuries, Maine served as both host and inspiration for a remarkable number of artists. It has been represented in almost every style and medium -- the luminist landscapes of Fitz Hugh Lane, impressionist seascapes of Willard Metcalf, abstractions by John Marin, and the realism of Andrew Wyeth's work.For 50 years, the Farnsworth Art Museum has collected expressions of Maine by these artists and others. Works by Washington Allston, Thomas Cole, Thomas Eakins, William Harnett, Martin Johnson Heade, George Inness, Robert Salmon, Gilbert Stuart, Thomas Sully, and others attest to the depth of the Museum's 19th century collection. The 20th century is richly represented by Will Barnet, George Bellows, Marsden Hartley, Robert Henri, Robert Indiana, Louise Nevelson, Neil Welliver, Marguerite and William Zorach, and especially the Wyeth family. The museum's holdings of American impressionists are especially strong, with works by Frank Benson, Joseph DeCamp, Childe Hassam, Maurice Prendergast, and John Twachtman.Maine in America presents a lavish selection of nearly 250 works from the Farnsworth's permanent collection of paintings, watercolors, and sculpture and traces the development of art in Maine within the larger context of American art.
The Lobster Coast: Rebels, Rusticators, and the Struggle for a Forgotten Frontier
By: Colin Woodard
“A thorough and engaging history of Maine’s rocky coast and its tough-minded people.”—Boston Herald“[A] well-researched and well-written cultural and ecological history of stubborn perseverance.”—USA TodayFor more than four hundred years the people of coastal Maine have clung to their rocky, wind-swept lands, resisting outsiders’ attempts to control them while harvesting the astonishing bounty of the Gulf of Maine. Today’s independent, self-sufficient lobstermen belong to the communities imbued with a European sense of ties between land and people, but threatened by the forces of homogenization spreading up the eastern seaboard.In the tradition of William Warner’s Beautiful Swimmers, veteran journalist Colin Woodard (author of American Character: A History of the Epic Struggle Between Individual Liberty and the Common Good) traces the history of the rugged fishing communities that dot the coast of Maine and the prized crustacean that has long provided their livelihood. Through forgotten wars and rebellions, and with a deep tradition of resistance to interference by people “from away,” Maine’s lobstermen have defended an earlier vision of America while defying the “tragedy of the commons”—the notion that people always overexploit their shared property. Instead, these icons of American individualism represent a rare example of true communal values and collaboration through grit, courage, and hard-won wisdom.
Moon Coastal Maine: With Acadia National Park (Travel Guide)
By: Nangle, Hilary
Maine Lighthouses Illustrated Map & Guide
By: Bella Stander
The illustrated map and guide to all the lighthouses in Maine, coastal New Hampshire and nearby New Brunswick. Completely revised and updated, with new cartography and text, and several new illustrations. 75 standing and 10 "lost" lighthouses located on a detailed coastal map. 35 original watercolor illustrations--8 newly commissioned. Reverse has history, description & directions to each lighthouse; directories of lighthouse museums & cruises; intriguing true tales. Folded paper, 24x36 in. For laminated poster edition, enter 1888216298 in search box. Similar maps available for Massachusetts, Mid-Atlantic (NJ, SE PA, DE, MD & VA), Southeast (NC, SC & GA), Florida and Northwest (OR, WA & AK); plus a U.S. Lighthouses map & directory. Search "Bella Terra Maps" on amazon.com to find them all.

Also Recommended

The Art of Monhegan Island
By: Carl Little, Arnold Skolnick
This book traces the artistic and cultural roots of the special appeal that the island of Monhegan in Maine has held over a broad range of artists who have resided there, some of them year-round for long periods, others who summered there or lived there only briefly. Includes examples in color of the works of 80 artists, including Wyeth (Jamie), Bogdanov, Bellows, Frederick, Henri, Hopper, and Kent.
Down East: An Illustrated History of Maritime Maine (2)
By: Lincoln Paine
From the first explorers, to the century of ships, to our modern fisheries and diversification, Maine's maritime story is told in engaging detail.  Lincoln Paine has laid down the framework for an understanding of Maine's maritime history by relating the population and landscape of today to their historic foundations.This engaging overview of Maine’s maritime history ranges from early Native American travel and fishing to pre-Plymouth European settlements, wars, international trade, shipbuilding, boom-and-bust fisheries, immigrant quarrymen, quick-lime production, yachting, and modern port facilities, all unfolding against one of the most dramatic seascapes on the planet. Down East can be read in an evening but will be referred to again and again. When the first edition was published in 2000, Walter Cronkite―a veteran Maine coastal sailor as well as The Most Trusted Man in America―wrote that “Paine’s economy of phrase and clarity of purpose make this book a delight.”Paine went on to write his monumental opus The Sea and Civilization: A Maritime History of the World (PW starred review), but now returns to his first and most abiding love, the coast of Maine, to revise and update this gem of a book. The new edition is printed in a large, full-color format with a stunning complement of historical photos, paintings, charts, and illustrations, making this a truly visual journey along a storied coast. 100 photos and illustrations, color throughout
Coastal Maine: A Maritime History
By: Roger F. Duncan
A fascinating and comprehensive chronicle of four hundred years of maritime history along the Maine coast. Roger Duncan recounts four hundred years of Maine's rich maritime history, from the early seafarers' discovery of its valuable resources and the families that settled the land, to Maine's role in the history of the US in peacetime and in war. He traces the changes in Maine's economy over the past century: the demise of the coastal trade; the burgeoning popularity of pleasure boating after World War II; the hardships that beset the fishing and lumber industries; and the rise of tourism. This anecdotal panorama of people, land, boats, and water will absorb historians, nautical enthusiasts, and New Englanders alike. 105 black-and-white photographs and illustrations, 18 maps
Andrew Wyeth : Memory and Magic
By: Knutson,Anne Classen
One Man's Meat
By: E B. White
In print for fifty-five years, One Man's Meat continues to delight readers with E.B. White's witty, succinct observations on daily life at a Maine saltwater farm. Too personal for an almanac, too sophisticated for a domestic history, and too funny and self-doubting for a literary journal, One Man's Meat can best be described as a primer of a countryman's lessons a timeless recounting of experience that will never go out of style.
The Lobster Chronicles: Life on a Very Small Island
By: Linda Greenlaw
After 17 years at sea, Linda Greenlaw decided it was time to take a break from being a swordboat captain, the career that would earn her a prominent role in Sebastian Junger's The Perfect Storm and a portrayal in the subsequent film. Greenlaw decided to move back home, to a tiny island seven miles off the Maine coast. There, she would pursue a simpler life as a lobsterman, find a husband, and settle down. But all doesn't go as planned. The lobsters refuse to crawl out from under their rocks and into the traps she and her father have painstakingly set. Fellow islanders draw her into bizarre intrigues, and the eligible bachelors prove even more elusive than the lobsters. But just when she thinks things can't get worse, something happens that forces her to reevaluate everything she thought she knew about life, luck, and lobsters. Filled with nautical detail and the dramas of small-town life, The Lobster Chronicles is a celebration of family and community. Greenlaw proves once again that fishermen are the best storytellers around.
Andrew Wyeth: A Secret Life
By: Richard Meryman
"A revelation. No one will ever view Andrew Wyeth's apparently tranquil works the same way again after reading this vivid and astonishing portrait of the turbulent, driven man who paints them. Richard Meryman has written a wonderful book." - Geoffrey C. Ward At its most fundamental level, this stunning and unique biography describes a distinguished painter's enterprise of transmitting emotion onto a flat surface. It explores all the factors that have combined to create Andrew Wyeth -- his childhood in a hothouse of creativity; his hypersensitivity; his formidable wife; his identification with people marginalized and misunderstood -- all which have made him an American icon. In the process, his realist works in watercolor and tempera, including the famous "Christina's World," have gained him a special and secure niche in the history of American art. The book is a portrait of obsession -- how single-mindedness has affected Wyeth's relationships and transformed his world into a realm of secrecy and fervid imagination. Those who read this book will never look at Wyeth's work as they did before. It reveals the artist's dark depths, as well as the ruthless, angry, child/man fantasist who paints the basic brutalities of existence -- death and madness --that vibrate eerily beneath his pictures' calm surfaces. Richard Meryman's narrative is almost novelistic, with its larger-than-life characters and subplots: the tragedy of C.C. Wyeth; Betsy Wyeth's campaign for independence and individuality; the byzantine 15-year-long drama of the Helga paintings; the eccentric and creative Wyeth clan; and the idiosyncratic land and people of Maine and Pennsylvania. Based on 30 years of research, frequent visits and countless conversations with the artist, his family, friends, admirers and critics, Andrew Wyeth: A Secret Life is the only book about the man and the artist that gets behind his carefully guarded screen, tells the full story of his life and reveals his complex personality and the motivations for his paintings.
N. C. Wyeth: A Biography
By: David Michaelis
His name summons up our earliest images of the beloved books we read as children. His illustrations for Scribner's Illustrated Classics (Treasure Island, Kidnapped, The Last of the Mohicans, The Yearling) are etched into the collective memory of generations of readers. He was hailed as the greatest American illustrator of his day. For forty-three years, starting in 1902, N.C. Wyeth painted landscapes, still lifes, portraits, and murals, as well as illustrations for a long shelf of world literature. Yet despite worldwide acclaim, he judged himself a failure, believing that illustration was of no importance.David Michaelis tells the story of Wyeth's family through four generations -- a saga that begins and ends with tragedy -- and brings to life the huge-spirited, deeply complicated man, and an America that was quickly vanishing.
Empire Falls
By: Richard Russo
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize“Russo writes with a warm, vibrant humanity.... A stirring mix of poignancy, drama and comedy.” —The Washington PostWelcome to Empire Falls, a blue-collar town full of abandoned mills whose citizens surround themselves with the comforts and feuds provided by lifelong friends and neighbors and who find humor and hope in the most unlikely places, in this Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Richard Russo. Miles Roby has been slinging burgers at the Empire Grill for 20 years, a job that cost him his college education and much of his self-respect. What keeps him there? It could be his bright, sensitive daughter Tick, who needs all his help surviving the local high school. Or maybe it’s Janine, Miles’ soon-to-be ex-wife, who’s taken up with a noxiously vain health-club proprietor. Or perhaps it’s the imperious Francine Whiting, who owns everything in town–and seems to believe that “everything” includes Miles himself. In Empire Falls Richard Russo delves deep into the blue-collar heart of America in a work that overflows with hilarity, heartache, and grace.
The Maine Reader: The Down East Experience, 1614 to the Present (Nonpareil Book)
By: Charles Shain
Here, in one large volume, is a book that captures the full sweep of Maine's culture and history, from the first dazzled vision of the European explorers to the modern prose of Carolyn Chute and John McPhee. Thoughtfully edited, illustrated with photographs of documents, buildings, and personalities, this compendium brings to life a state that has always maintained its own character and independence. All the great figures who were ever born in, have inhabited, or have written about Maine can be found in these pages, including (among many others) Longfellow, Thoreau, Jewett, Millay, Beston, and Gould. In addition, the editors have uncovered small unknown gems: the journal of a foot soldier marching with Benedict Arnold and the bawdy memoirs of a sea captain's wife. Illustrated with over fifty splendid halftones, this collection - the most complete and entertaining selection of Down East writing yet assembled - will be indispensable reading for anyone who has ever succumbed to the charms of the Pine Tree State.
The Maine Woods (Penguin Nature Library)
By: Henry David Thoreau
"What a wilderness walk for a man to take alone!...Here was traveling of the old heroic kind over the unaltered face of nature." -Henry David ThoreauOver a period of three years, Thoreau made three trips to the largely unexplored woods of Maine. He climbed mountains, paddled a canoe by moonlight, and dined on cedar beer, hemlock tea and moose lips. Taking notes constantly, Thoreau was just as likely to turn his observant eye to the habits and languages of the Abnaki Indians or the arduous life of the logger as he was to the workings of nature. He acutely observed the rivers, lakes, mountains, wolves, moose, and stars in the dark sky. He also told of nights sitting by the campfire, and of meeting men who communicated with each other by writing on the trunks of trees. In The Maine Woods, Thoreau captured a wilder side of America and revealed his own adventurous spirit.For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
The Maine Dictionary
By: John McDonald
"Maine truly has a language of its own, as the state’s favorite storyteller makes plain, with hilarious illustrations by a leading regional cartoonist."
Maine: Life in a Day
By: Susan Conley
What better way to celebrate 50 years of book publishing than to celebrate everyday life in Maine. Gathering the work of 50 photographers from all over the state, the book captures the day to day lives of ordinary Mainers. Primarily a book about people, these images are arranged to follow the course of a day, starting with morning routines, passing through the events of the day, and closing at nightIt's a stunning tribute to the extraordinary that can be found in the ordinary. Together these images compose a moving portrait of a small place at a small moment in time.
The Coast of Maine
By: Carl Heilman II
With a coastline that rivals California’s, Maine attracts millions of visitors each year who come to swim, fish, hike, or just enjoy the views. Many of the images present a near panoramic scope, placing the viewer in the middle of a wilderness splendor. The photographs capture the region’s famous sandy beaches, tree-covered mountains, tidepools brimming with life, and secluded harbors, as well as quaint villages, historic lighthouses, cranberry bogs, and lobster boats. Chapters cover Ogunquit, Kennebunkport, and Portland to Penobscot Bay, Mount Desert Island, and Cobscook Bay. A central focus is Acadia National Park, one of the top ten most visited national parks in America. Nearby, the town of Bar Harbor hosts more than eighty cruise ships each year. The book also celebrates offshore Maine, with images of whales, puffins, and other elusive sea creatures. The Coast of Maine makes an affordable and charming gift for anyone planning, or dreaming of, a visit to this glorious region.
24x36 World Wall Map by Smithsonian Journeys - Tan Oceans Special Edition (24x36 Laminated)
Travel Insurance

For the convenience of our travelers, Travel Guard provides an on-tour Insurance Plan. On-tour emergency evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. Residents only). It also includes up to $25,000 medical and up to $500 dental expense coverage, and 24-hour worldwide travel and medical assistance. Please click here to view complete coverage details.

Please visit www.TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys or call Travel Guard at 1-800-208-6142 to learn about additional (optional) coverage.

Terms and conditions

Our Mission

Smithsonian Journeys engage travelers in the mission of the Smithsonian – “the increase and diffusion of knowledge.” Like the Institution, our tours enrich our guests’ lives and satisfy their curiosity about the world around them. Your participation benefits the work of Smithsonian’s 19 museums, National Zoo, and nine research centers, helping to preserve our national treasures and shape the future through science, research, and exhibitions.

What Is Provided With Your Tour

  • Expertise of a Smithsonian Journeys expert, travel director and local guides throughout the tour
  • All gratuities for the expert, ship's crew, tour director, ship's crew, on-tour guides and drivers
  • Airport transfers, luggage handling and gratuities (when applicable) for both Flex Air participants and participants who are able to meet the scheduled group departure times. Reservations are required.
  • Pre-tour information, including a reading list
  • All on-tour transportation, unless otherwise noted
  • All accommodations for the duration of the tour
  • Meals, as noted in the itinerary (B-breakfast; L-lunch; D-dinner; R-reception)
  • All sightseeing and visits as noted in each itinerary

What Is Not Provided With Your Tour

  • Passport and all visa fees and photos; immunization(s); and any other travel documentation fees as required
  • Optional travel insurance
  • Personal items, unless otherwise stated, such as wine, liquors, a-la-carte orders
  • Expenses incurred by our tour operator in making any individual travel arrangements in conjunction with the tour
  • Airline baggage and other airline fees and associated taxes, unless noted in Tour description
  • Communication Charges (e.g.: phone, internet, etc.)
  • Other items noted as optional or not specifically mentioned as included
  • Airfare to/from your departure city is not included. Optional airfare may be available at an additional cost
  • Port Charges are an additional $250 per person
  • Gratuities for ship's staff and crew are not expected

Payments

A deposit of $500 per person for a land tour reservation or $1,000 for a cruise reservation, unless otherwise noted, is required to reserve a space on a tour. All payments may be made by credit card or check to the tour operator.  Deposits are applied to the final payment of the tour price.

Final payment is due 120 days prior to departure.  Balance is due upon invoicing.  If full payment is not received by the final payment due date, your place cannot be guaranteed on the tour.

For additional information, please call 855-330-1542 to speak with a Cultural Travel Specialist, Mon-Fri 9 am - 6 pm, at SJReservations@si.edu or SmithsonianJourneys.org.

A Note about Costs

All prices are based on two persons sharing a room/cabin. All prices are quoted in U.S. dollars. Tour costs are based upon current airfares, tariffs, currency values, and on the basis of a presumptive minimum number of participants. While we will do everything possible to maintain the listed prices, they are subject to change.   Due to fluctuations in oil prices, a fuel surcharge may be added to your tour fee (e.g. internal flights, cruises, etc.).  Details and costs will be advised prior to departure.

Wait List

If the tour of your choice is fully subscribed, you may choose to be placed on a waitlist by contacting a Reservation Specialist at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 6 pm, or SJReservations@si.edu. Individuals on the wait list will be contacted if space becomes available and can inquire about tour status by contacting a Reservation Specialist. If you choose to withdraw from a wait list, please notify us. 

Cancellation and Refund Policy

Following enrollment, a participant’s withdrawal from the tour for any reason, including, but not limited to, illness, injury, family engagements, work-related issues, or geopolitical concerns, etc., will be deemed a cancellation. Please understand that there will be no exceptions to our cancellation policy.

Per person cancellation fees are based on date of written notice to Smithsonian Journeys. Tour operator will refund on the following basis:

  • Cancellations within 7 days of booking:  Full Refund (unless it is within final payment date, 120 days before departure)
  • Cancellations after 7 days of booking but within 121 days of departure:  $500 Retained
  • Cancellations made between 120 days and 91days before departure: $1,000 Retained.
  • Cancellation within 90 days of departure: No Refund
  • Cancellation by Smithsonian Journeys:  Full Refund or Credit 

Air Service

For tours that include round-trip international airfare, rates are based on economy class from designated departure cities as shown. Airfares from other cities are available upon request.  Airline upgrades at additional cost may be available on request for the international portion of your flight.  If an air schedule requires an overnight stay in a gateway city, the cost of the overnight will be at your expense.  For tours that include round-trip international airfare, we will be happy to help with arrangements.

Individual Arrivals and Group Transfers

A designated group flight is not included on most tours. Your first tour bulletin will thoroughly explain the details of the options available for your individual flights. Airport transfers (when applicable) are complimentary for both Flex Air participants and participants who are able to meet the scheduled group departure times. Reservations are required.

Air Service/Tickets Purchased Independently of the Tour

International and domestic air schedules are subject to change at any time. If you make your own airline reservations, we recommend that you do not purchase nonrefundable tickets or tickets with high penalties for changes. 

We urge you to check airline cancellation penalties before purchasing airline tickets since international departure times and flights can change. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator accepts liability for cancellation penalties related to domestic or international airline tickets purchased independently in conjunction with a tour.

Travel Insurance

For the convenience of our travelers, Travel Guard provides an on-tour Insurance Plan. On-tour emergency evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. Residents only). It also includes up to $25,000 medical and up to $500 dental expense coverage, and 24-hour worldwide travel and medical assistance. Please click here to view complete coverage details. 

Please visit www.TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys or call Travel Guard at 1-800-208-6142 to learn about additional (optional) coverage.

Travel Documents and Information

Participants are responsible for obtaining any documents required for their participation in the tour such as a valid passport, all visas, vaccination certificates, and any other documents. If your tour requires a visa or other entry documents, we will send you the appropriate information after you make a reservation.  Failure to obtain documents does not negate the terms and conditions, and any extra costs incurred for rerouting or delay due to travel without the necessary documents will be the participant’s responsibility. If you are not a U.S. citizen, please contact your embassy or consulate to ensure you obtain the proper documentation.

For all international departures, a passport valid for at least six months after the completion of your tour, and with at least six blank visa pages, is required for U.S. citizens on all tours. The U.S. Department of State will no longer add visa pages into U.S. passports beginning January 1, 2016. The decision to discontinue this service was made to enhance the security of the passport and to abide by international passport standards. Beginning January 1, 2016, applicants in need of additional pages in their valid passports must obtain a new passport. For more information on how or where to apply, please visit Travel.State.Gov/ApplyEarly or call the National Passport Information Center toll-free at 1-877-487-2778/1-888-874-7793 (TTY/TTD).

For more information about traveling to destinations abroad, we recommend the “Learn about your destination” section on the U.S. Department of State travel website www.travel.state.gov.  For medical information, we recommend contacting the Centers for Disease Control at (877) FYI-TRIP or www.cdc.gov/travel

Physical and Medical Considerations

To enjoy the travel experience, participants should be in good physical and mental health. All tours require an element of walking (up to two miles per day over uneven terrain) and of climbing stairs, often without handrails. Participants should have sufficient stamina to keep pace with an active group of participants on long days of touring. If you have any questions about your ability to participate in a tour, please call us at 855-330-1542. Any physical condition, diet, or special request for accommodation must be identified in writing on the Personal Information Form when the reservation is made. Some tours have additional information regarding physical and medical considerations, which may be discussed with the Reservation Specialist at 855-330-1542.

Please be aware that health care standards, facilities, and services abroad may be different or even inadequate for treating certain health conditions.  It is essential that you inform us in writing (on the provided Personal Information Form) of any existing condition for which you may require medical attention or accommodation during the tour. We will make reasonable efforts to accommodate the needs of our participants; however, services of a personal nature cannot be expected or guaranteed. By forwarding the deposit for pre-registration or registration in full, you affirm that you do not have any physical or other limitations that would create a hazard for yourself or other participants or would require adjustments to the tour for other participants.

Itinerary or Tour Modifications

Smithsonian Journeys strives to improve tour itineraries and their features. If improvements can be made, or unforeseen circumstances beyond our control make changes necessary, at our sole discretion, we reserve the right to vary itineraries and to substitute elements of the tour.  These elements include, but are not limited to:  hotels, staff, speakers, experts, and services for any stated in the itinerary.

Every effort will be made to carry out the tour as planned but alterations may still occur after the final itinerary has been sent to you. Please note that weather and other conditions may force changes to the advertised sailing schedule on cruise tours. The ship’s captain has the authority to change the ship’s schedule. Smithsonian Journeys and the tour operator reserve the right to substitute motorcoach transportation using hotels, inns or lodges for cruise accommodations if necessary due to weather, water conditions or levels, other events of force majeure, mechanical, or other conditions beyond their control.

Hotel Accommodations

Smithsonian Journeys chooses hotels based on a combination of location, service, atmosphere, and price. On adventure tours and tours in out-of-the-way places, best-available hotels are used.  Tour prices are based on two persons sharing a room with a bath.

Singles and Roommates

Hotel rooms are always reserved for single participants, however, the number of single rooms available on a tour may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you register early. Please note that a single supplement will most likely apply for a single room.  If you are traveling alone and wish to share a room/cabin, we will do our best to find someone of the same gender and smoking preference to share with you. If you are matched with a non-smoking roommate, it is mutually agreed that you cannot smoke in your hotel room/cabin. When a roommate cannot be found, a single supplement will be charged. Please note that the single rooms in many foreign hotels may be smaller than those to which you are accustomed.

Children

All tours except family journeys, are designed for adults. Some may be suitable for children 16 and older. Regardless of age, children must pay full price unless otherwise noted, moreover, a parent or guardian must accompany those under 18.

Special Travel Arrangements

Participants may wish to extend their stay in the group hotel either before or after the tour. Our tour operators will work with you on these arrangements, dependent upon space availability.  Your pre-tour bulletins will further explain all options.

Should you decide not to participate in certain parts of the tour or use certain goods included in the tour, no refunds will be made for those unused parts of the tour or goods.

Dispute Resolution

If a complaint arises, the participant should first inform a member of the on-tour staff, so that the staff can attempt to rectify the matter. If the issue remains unresolved, the individual should submit the complaint in writing to Smithsonian Journeys within 30 days of the completion of the tour.

The Smithsonian Journeys staff will make a good faith effort to resolve any dispute.  In the event that the parties are unable to resolve the dispute, the parties may agree to use a method of non-binding Alternative Dispute Resolution to resolve the dispute.  In the event that the parties are unable to agree on the method of Alternative Dispute Resolution to use, or in the event that either party is dissatisfied with the outcome of that alternative dispute resolution method, such efforts shall not constitute a waiver by either party of the right to file suit.

Photography and Video

Participants on tour may be photographed or recorded (audio and video) for the educational and promotional purposes of the Smithsonian Institution and Smithsonian authorized third parties.  This content may be used in marketing publications and posted on websites to promote Smithsonian Journeys without compensation to the participant. Participants who prefer that their name, voice and/or image not be used must notify us in writing prior to the beginning of the tour.

Smoking Policy

 For the comfort of all participants, we ask that there be no smoking during all group activities, including excursions and meals. On certain cruises, there is no smoking aboard the ship. Your pre-tour bulletins will provide further information.

READ CAREFULLY: RESPONSIBILITY STATEMENT AND LIABILITY DISCLAIMER

Smithsonian Journeys tours are organized and administered by professional tour operators hired as independent contractors. The use of designated tour operators allows the Smithsonian to offer participants a wide array of educational travel opportunities. The tour operator acts only as an agent for the respective suppliers by making arrangements for transportation, accommodations, and other services. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator shall be held liable for personal injury, death, property damage or accident, delay or irregularity arising out of any act or omission of these suppliers. The Smithsonian Institution and the tour operator reserve the right, without penalty, to make changes in the published itinerary whenever in their judgment conditions warrant, or if they deem it necessary for the comfort, convenience, or safety of tour participants.

The Smithsonian Institution and its designated tour operator also reserve the right, without penalty, to withdraw the tour announced, to decline to accept any person as a participant in a tour, or to require any participant to withdraw from the tour at any time (including, but not limited for inappropriate, or offensive behavior) when such action is determined by tour staff to be in the best interests of the health, safety or general welfare of the tour group or the individual participant.

Dates, schedules, tour details, and costs, although provided in good faith based on information available at the time of publication on the website, in the brochure or catalog, are subject to change and revision.

AS A CONDITION OF ACCEPTANCE OF ANY APPLICATION, EACH APPLICANT MUST AGREE TO THE STATEMENT SET FORTH BELOW:

The undersigned has read carefully the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer set forth above, the schedule of activities for this tour, as well as the terms and conditions of application and participation as set forth in the tour materials, and recognizes and accepts any risk associated with the tour and the conditions, including the refund policy, set forth in the tour materials. The undersigned further acknowledges that there are many risks and uncertainties inherent in any travel tour, including but not limited to the hazards of various modes of transportation, forces of nature including, but not limited to, weather, flooding, and high/low water levels, acts or omissions of foreign governments, terrorism, war or insurrection, theft, illness, bites from or attacks by animals, insects, or pests, and damage to person or property due to the negligent acts or omissions of tour staff or others. In consideration of, and as part payment for, the right to participate in the tour, the undersigned, on behalf of himself, his dependents, heirs, executors, administrators and assigns, agrees to release the Smithsonian Institution, its Regents, officers, employees, representatives or agents, the United States, and the tour operator and its officers, employees and agents, from liability for personal injury, death, property damage or loss suffered by any person in connection with this tour, even if caused by the negligence (but not the reckless, willful, or fraudulent conduct) of tour staff or other related persons or entities. In addition, by registering for this tour, the applicant certifies that he or she is mentally and physically capable of full participation in this tour. By registering for a Smithsonian Journey, the participant agrees to the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer and the Terms and Conditions herein.

By Registering For A Smithsonian Journey, The Participant Agrees To The Responsibility Statement And Liability Disclaimer And The Terms And Conditions Herein. Updated August 2019. ©2019, Smithsonian Institution