Why South America is the ultimate destination for solo cruise holidays


South America is one of the world’s most spectacular regions, and a fantastic destination for solo exploration in the company of like-minded individuals. The following cruises are all ideal if you’re going it alone, whether you dream of floating past indigenous villages along the Peruvian Amazon or spotting seals and dolphins as you cruise the Chilean fjords. 

Amazon riverboat adventure 

A seven-day Peruvian Amazon cruise from G Adventures is perfect for solo sailors. The small size of the ships makes for a more intimate cruise, and smaller group numbers mean you’ll quickly get to know fellow passengers as well as your crew members. Communal meals provide brilliant opportunities to boast about the jaguar you spotted, which is more likely than you might imagine on this particular trip – you’ll spend the majority of the time inside the wildlife-filled Pacaya Samiria National Reserve. Excursions include an encounter with a local shaman, visits to indigenous villages and night walks through the rainforest. 

Book it: A seven-day Amazon river cruise with G Adventures departs Lima on December 30, 2019. From £2,483 per person, based on sole occupancy. (020 7313 6944; gadventures.co.uk)  

The southern half of Chile

Silversea is known for its low single supplements, but that’s just one of many perks for those going it alone with the luxury line. Every cruise has a packed calendar of events designed with solos in mind, whether it’s nightly get-togethers in the bar, singles’ dinners hosted by senior members of crew or daily golf-putting tournaments. Not that you’ll have much time to tee off – an Ushuaia to Valparaiso cruise includes a sail through the breathtaking Chilean fjords as well as stops in Punto Arenas, the wildlife-rich Alberto de Agostini National Park and the historic city of Puerto Montt. 

Book it: A 14-day Ushuaia to Valparaiso cruise with Silversea departs Ushuaia on March 4, 2020. From £13,860 per person, based on sole occupancy. (0844 251 0837; silversea.com

Rio de Janeiro with Sugarloaf in the centre

Rio de Janeiro is one of the world’s most strikingly beautiful coastal cities


70-night South American exploration 

Fred Olsen always sells a number of rooms on all its ships as single rooms, so get in there quick and you’ll have no single supplement to pay. Their South American exploration cruises are also adults-only (so no sugar-fuelled toddlers threatening your “me time”) and it’s also a flight-free cruise – you’ll start and finish in Southampton. You’ll then cruise to Brazil for visits to Salvador, Rio de Janeiro and Ilhabela, before you follow the coastline to Uruguay, Peru and Columbia. The journey back across the pond is broken up with stops in various Caribbean islands, Portugal and Spain. 

Book it: A 70-night South American Exploration cruise with Fred Olsen Cruise Lines departs Southampton on January 6, 2020. From £8,499 per person, based on sole occupancy. (0800 084 6788; fredolsencruises.com

Luxury Amazon river cruise 

Aqua Expeditions is another cruise line known for its low single supplements, in some cases waiving them altogether. Bag a place on next August’s seven-night Peruvian Amazon river cruise and your single supplement will be just 25 per cent. The ship’s small size provides the perfect opportunity to mingle with your fellow passenger. All of the 16 suites are outside-facing, with floor to ceiling panoramic windows, the perfect way to take in the view, whether it’s of the pink dolphins of the Yanayacu-Pucate River or the starry skies above the Pacaya Samiria National Reserve. 

Book it:A seven-day Luxury Amazon river cruise with Aqua Expeditions departs Iquitos on August 21, 2020. From £8,356 per person, based on sole occupancy. (+65 6270 4002; aquaexpeditions.com

Plaza de Armas, Lima

Lima is well worth a visit, for its architectural history and its gourmet food scene


Treasures of the Inca coast 

Seabourn takes extra care of its single travellers, organising a number of events at the start of the cruise, which are designed specifically to help solos get to know each other. Single cruisers are invited to join hotel directors at regular hosted dinners, and the accommodation is another plus point. Single travellers often complain of being allocated rooms the size of airing cupboards, but Seabourn Quest is an all-suite vessel whose cabin sizes start at a generous 246 square feet. Stops include Lima and Pisco in Peru, and Arica, Iquique and Santiago in Chile. 

Book it: A nine-day Treasures of the Inca Coast cruise with Seabourn departs Lima on November 19, 2019. From £3,639 per person, based on sole occupancy. (0344 338 8615; seabourn.com)

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