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Caribbean to Tahiti

6,500 Nautical Miles via Panama, Galapagos, The Marquesas

Sail to Bonaire and awake to flocks of Venezuelan flamingos flying through a misty sunrise. Toss the dock lines up to the lock workers of the Panama Canal, cross the lake and prepare to enter the Pacific Ocean. Watch the latitude hesitate on zero as we cross the equator. See blue-footed booby birds hitching a ride on deck back to the Galapagos Archipelago. Linger no more as every day of the next 20 will be spent at sea until we make landfall in the Polynesian Islands of the Marquesas, the place where Paul Gauguin found his inspiration and love. You too will love arriving in Tahiti in the Society Islands, but, after all, that’s just a place to secure the schooner. You will have secured lifetime memories along the way.

  • Days
  • Credits
  • Students
  • Term
  • Tuition (USD)
Upcoming Semester Information

We’re sorry, but there are no voyages planned at this time. Please contact us for more information.

Life Aboard

Sails Up Anchors Down

USF Accredited Academics

Certification Courses

Activities

  • Scuba Diving & Snorkeling
  • Educational & Cultural Tours
  • Hiking & Trekking
  • Service
  • Personal Time

The Voyage

Your Adventure Starts Here
Welcome aboard!

The journey begins at our home base in Antigua. It won’t be hard to find our 112-ft schooner, S/Y Argo, tied alongside the dock with an eager crew of 6 staff waiting to greet you with a smile. After dropping your bags in your cabin, it’s time to take a breath, look around, and realize that this beautiful schooner floating atop crystal clear Caribbean waters is now your home and classroom for the next 90 days as you embark on the voyage of a lifetime.

Sail training students sweating lines

Learning the Ropes
8-10 days

Early on day two, we cast off our lines and the journey begins. As with all Sea|mester voyages, the first week to ten days of the program is a crash course on how to be successful in your new environment. With the guidance of our staff, you’ll learn the in’s and out’s of how to live, work and learn in such close quarters with others – from sailing to cooking and everything in between.

Those new to scuba diving will spend quite a bit of time underwater working towards the PADI Open Water Certification. Those arriving with more experience will get reacquainted with the underwater world by taking a few refresher dives.

During the first week, you’ll also have your first lectures for each of the four college-level courses. While the structure of the syllabi might look familiar, you’ll quickly find that learning from the deck of a boat couldn’t be more different.

Sample Trip Itinerary*
Start Location End Location
Antigua (ANU) Papeete, Tahiti (PPT)
Area Ports of Call
Caribbean Les Saintes, Dominica, ABC’s
Central America Cartagena, The Panama Canal
Galapagos Isla San Cristobal, Isla Santa Cruz
Marquesas Nuku Hiva, ‘Ua Pou
Tuamotus Ahe Atoll, Rangiroa
French Polynesia Moorea, Tahiti
*Please note that all destinations are weather dependent and subject to change.

 

Play Video
Seamester Scuba Diving
Exploring the Underwater Realm
20-25 Dives

Between the Caribbean and the South Pacific, students onboard Argo during the Caribbean to Tahiti voyage will experience some of the world’s best scuba diving. Over the course of the 90-day voyage, you’ll become an experienced diver, completing between 20 and 25 dives. However, the novelty of breathing underwater won’t disappear.

Whether working towards a new certification in 15 feet of water, researching on a barrier reef, or just exploring a wreck at 100 ft. – you’ll gain a lifetime worth of stories from places few people get to see.

If you’re new to diving, you’ll earn the PADI Open Water Dive Certification as well as the Advanced Open Water Dive Certification. Depending on time, conditions and student interest, many groups also earn the PADI Rescue Diver certification. If you’re already an experienced diver, you can work all the way up to the professional Divemaster certification. If you feel that scuba diving is a passion, this is definitely the voyage to consider.

seamester-guadeloupe-abroad
Anchors Down – Guadeloupe & Les Saints
(2-3 Days)

After the completion of your first passage, you’ll arrive in what seems like a different world from the one you left behind.  Guadeloupe & Les Saintes are to this day considered to be a region of France so the minute you step off the boat you’ll find yourself fully immersed in this enclave of European culture. Hike to Fort Napoleon, enjoy an espresso after siesta, or take out a Hobie Cat with one of your shipmates to live the lifestyle unique to this small corner of the world.

>Next stop: Dominica
hiking-the-caribbean-college
Dominica
(3-5 Days)

Although you can see Dominica from Les Saintes, the cultures of these neighbors might as well come from different sides of the planet. Nicknamed the Nature Isle of the Caribbean, Dominica is often considered one of our students’ favorite islands of the voyage.  With the help of our good friends, local Dominicans Pancho and Sea Cat, you’ll hike through the rainforest to the world’s largest boiling lake, all while refreshing yourself in one of its dozens of natural hot springs.

>Next stop: Bonaire & Aruba
bonaire-windsurf-lessons
Bonaire and Aruba
(2-4 Days)

The ABC islands might be just off the coast of Venezuela but life on shore is closer to life in the Netherlands. Windsurfers from all over the world flock to the windward side of Bonaire where the conditions are ideal for experts and beginners alike! The island also offers some of the best deep diving, wildlife, and pristine reefs – and it’s all accessible directly from the beach!

>Next stop: Cartagena
cartegena-study-abroad-colombia
Cartagena, Colombia
(1-3 Days)

As a Unesco world heritage site, Cartagena’s colonial city is one of South America’s most enthralling destinations. The vast network of plazas and churches connected by cobbled alleyways is enough to explore for weeks. Time in the open air cafes on the fashionable peninsula of Boca Grande with shipmates who are quickly becoming like a second family is a perfect way to say goodbye to the Caribbean.

>Next stop: Panama
panama-study-abroad-canal
The Panama Canal
(6-8 Days)

When you reach the 81-foot high steel gates of the first lock in the Panama Canal, you’ll understand why it is considered one of the greatest engineering achievements ever completed by human beings. With the help of your crew and the Panamanian dock workers, you’ll connect two different worlds over the course of several days with multiple opportunities to explore the crossroads of the Americas.

>Next stop: Galapagos
Play Video
seamester-sailing-video
Rite of Passage
Life and Rhythm on the Big Blue

It’s amazing to enter the Pacific and reflect on what you’ve already accomplished but once life at sea starts to become your new normal, after you’ve gone through your station drills, man overboard scenarios, fire drills etc. – it will be time to put your new skills to the test on this transoceanic passage. From here on out, the distances between ports becomes greater. You’ll cross the equator, battle squalls, navigate the doldrums and make the tradewinds work for you as you learn to soak in passage life. Throughout your 90-day voyage, the longest passage can be up to 20 days long with the average passage being 2-5 days. Make no mistake, as a Sea|mester student you are not a passenger, you are the crew responsible for making the ship sail. You’ll be an integral part of a watch team sharing the responsibility of navigation, bow watch, engine checks, sail trim and steering the ship to its intended destination.

community-service-study-abroad

Giving Back
10-20 Service Hours

As you hop from country to country and culture to culture, you’ll quickly realize how much you gain from each stop along the way. It’s natural to feel as though you should be giving back in some way. Unique to the Caribbean to Tahiti voyage, you’ll have the opportunity to do just that with many of the friends and partner organizations Sea|mester has picked up along the way. Whether it’s cultural exchange at an elementary school in Dominica or working alongside endangered giant tortoises at the Charles Darwin Research center in the Galapagos – you’ll leave knowing you’ve made a positive impact on the places that have given so much to you.

galapagos-with-seamester
Anchors Down – The Galapagos Islands
(3-5 Days)

Known to many as the archipelago that inspired Charles Darwin’s “Origin of Species,” the Galapagos islands will live up to every bit of hype that surrounds them. Here you’ll swim with sea lions and tour the Darwin Research Center with 100 year-old tortoises, blue-footed boobies and the world’s only marine iguanas. You’ll explore hidden freshwater pools, traverse the highlands, and dive alongside the world’s friendliest sharks in the land that time forgot.

>Next stop: Marquesas
marquesas-transpacific-semester-abroad
Marquesas Islands
(3-5 Days)

You’ll have some mixed emotions about planting your feet on solid ground after roughly 17 days at sea but the hills of The Marquesas Islands and the adventure they promise are bound to excite you. You’ll get the chance to properly stretch your legs on a hike through dense forests and while advanced divers run training scenarios in Hakatea Bay everybody gets to enjoy some downtime and get used to the boat at anchor. Although Marquesas represents the first port of call in French Polynesia, you are still over 750 nautical miles from the final destination of this voyage.

>Next stop: Tuamotus
tuamotos-transpacific-study-abroad
Tuamotus
(2-4 Days)

The beauty of atolls is nearly impossible to describe. They form after islands sink but the barrier reefs continue to grow. You’ll put your navigation skills to the test by guiding Argo through the barrier islands and drop the anchor in a South Pacific paradise. The pristine reefs and the wildlife that live here are ideal for fun dives and exploring the famous black pearl farms that drive the local economy.

>Next stop: Tahiti
moorea-semester-at-sea
Moorea & Tahiti
(1-3 Days)

The astounding beauty of Moorea and Tahiti make the perfect backdrop for not only finishing up the academic aspect of the journey but also reflecting on the time you’ve spent onboard your new floating home. Boom swings, scavenger hunts, and long days of onshore exploration help you realize just how close you’ve gotten to everyone onboard. A drive by the main island’s airport on the way to surf the infamous waves of Teahupo’o acts as a gentle reminder to soak in this beautiful place as your voyage of a lifetime comes to an end.

>Next stop: real life.
get-your-captains-license

First Step to Becoming a Captain!
Academics

For those who have the prior requisite experience, a passion for sailing, and hope to work in the maritime industry, all our 80 & 90-day voyages aboard S/Y Argo offer the Professional Skipper and Crew Training course (PSCT).

Typically only 3 to 4 students will choose to take this course. You’ll have the opportunity to work towards your Master of Yachts 200 Ton Offshore License by completing the theory portion. This course contains in-depth examinations covering subjects such as Meteorology, Navigation, Tides & Currents, and Collision Regulations.

Play Video
accredited-academics-seamester
Academics Aboard
12 USF Credits

Throughout the voyage, it’s easy to forget that this is College even though academics are an integral part of the experience. Our instructors schedule 3 or 4 lectures, discussions, or labs per class each week and each course includes quizzes, research projects, midterms, and finals.

Learning in an environment that combines academia with experience allows you to truly interact with your education. It brings academics to life, adding relevance and practical application to the material. Learning has never been this fun!

Time to Say Goodbye

The best way to explain what it means to say goodbye after such an incredible experience is to use the words from someone who had to do just that…

“This trip started out with many “firsts.” The first time we stepped foot on Argo, the first time we were underway, the first time we raised the sails, the first time the head was clogged, the first time we went bilge diving, the first time we really felt like a team. As the trip progressed we became a family, we learned to live in a small space with a large number of people. We learned to appreciate great conversations and beautiful sunsets. We learned how to be busy, and cram a week's worth of activity in one day, but we also learned how to do nothing, how to just be content in each other's company during our 17-day passage halfway across the Pacific Ocean. Throughout this trip, we covered 6804 nautical miles making 14 stops along the way. However, as the trip came to a close, the trip started to be about the “lasts.” The last swim, the last sail raise, the last passage, the last squeeze question, and the last night together as a boat [At this moment, Emily begins crying and hands the blog off to Ford to finish it]. The shipmates want to thank the Argo staff for making this experience so unforgettable.”
Leah S. Papeete, Tahiti
Day 62
By Macaire L.

Spaghetti and Meatballs

Today was a beautiful day. It started off last night with some of the most amazing bioluminescence of the entire…

Read More
Day 66
By Riley G.

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. It’s the word you say when you don’t know what to say. Let me tell you, friends, not knowing…

Read More
Day 69
By Una O.

Almost halfway there!

Today’s 4-8 watch, with the (mostly) clear sky full of stars brightening up into another beautiful sunset, set me off…

Read More
Day 72
By Amanda C.

So near and yet so far

Today dawned bright and early as Watch Team 2 saw a beautiful sunrise accompanied by a glimpse of land! On…

Read More
Day 64
By Giselle L.

Getting stuck into it

Hey Everybody! I am happy to report that it feels like we’re all embracing the rhythm of passage – 4ams…

Read More
Day 74
By Elie G.

Into the unknown

At the beginning of this passage, someone said that a couple of weeks into a long passage, people begin to…

Read More
Day 65
By Renee P.

HBD FRANKIE!!!!! (our resident shark-lover)

to all Argo’s loyal fans out there: hello; it is I, your skipper of the day, r-dawgg (renee perry). for…

Read More
Day 59
By Nick S.

A Funday on Sunday

Another beautiful day following the South Equatorial Current. Day 4 or 5 of passage depending on who you ask. It…

Read More
Day 61
By Frankie G.

Mamma Mia Fan Club!

Hi families!! Here is a recap of another day conquering the Pacific ocean. Watch team 3 (the superior watch team)…

Read More
Day 63
By Elle E.

Half way to French Polynesia

Today started off as an early one as watch team 2 took over the deck from watch team 1 at…

Read More
Day 57
By Izzy L.

Another epic sailing day

Day 2 of our 5 week passage! We are all settling well into our new watch teams. Obviously Watch Team…

Read More
Day 60
By Steph T.

An Extra Hour of Sleep

We are officially through day 6 of our passage, which means that my abs have been engaged for six straight…

Read More
Day 58
By Gabe C.

Sedermester

Once again I find myself privileged to be the skipper of the day. This day was much like the ones…

Read More
Day 71
By Lauren S.

Hello French Polynesia

Over the past few days we have reached some exciting milestones to add to our logbooks. Yesterday, Tim spotted a…

Read More
Day 73
By Marina C.

Argo TED talks

Hello families!!! Another day traversing the Pacific began bright and early with another stunning sunrise and watch team 1 leading…

Read More
Day 76
By Sam P.

Stormy Pacific

Shower Time! After clear skies and lots of sunlight for the past 3 weeks, we’ve had a little bit of…

Read More
Day 67
By Bella B.

Sailing the Seas

After last night’s 8 p.m.-12 a.m watch where we all got to sit under a star-filled sky and hear dolphins…

Read More
Day 75
By Lewis T.

"If you could live inside an animal, what would be your favourite dessert"? / Meet our Watch Teams

Hello peeps! Lewis from Argo here, still somewhere in the middle of the Pacific Ocean… Another sunny day, finished off…

Read More
Day 68
By Louis A.

Emergency Frist Responders

Today watch team 3 started with the 12 am to 4 am watch. Frankie spent a considerable amount of time…

Read More
Day 70
By Trevor S.

Letters from the Argonauts

I’ll keep it short. Today we jibed first thing after the sun rose. We then enjoyed a lunch of leftovers…

Read More

Trip Logs

Welcome aboard!

The journey begins at our home base in Antigua. It won’t be hard to find our 112-ft schooner, S/Y Argo, tied alongside the dock with an eager crew of 6 staff waiting to greet you with a smile. After dropping your bags in your cabin, it’s time to take a breath, look around, and realize that this beautiful schooner floating atop crystal clear Caribbean waters is now your home and classroom for the next 90 days as you embark on the voyage of a lifetime.

Sample Trip Itinerary*
Start Location End Location
Antigua (ANU) Papeete, Tahiti (PPT)
Area Ports of Call
Caribbean Les Saintes, Dominica, ABC’s
Central America Cartagena, The Panama Canal
Galapagos Isla San Cristobal, Isla Santa Cruz
Marquesas Nuku Hiva, ‘Ua Pou
Tuamotus Ahe Atoll, Rangiroa
French Polynesia Moorea, Tahiti
*Please note that all destinations are weather dependent and subject to change.

 

Sail training students sweating lines

Learning the Ropes
8-10 days

Early on day two, we cast off our lines and the journey begins. As with all Sea|mester voyages, the first week to ten days of the program is a crash course on how to be successful in your new environment. With the guidance of our staff, you’ll learn the in’s and out’s of how to live, work and learn in such close quarters with others – from sailing to cooking and everything in between.

Those new to scuba diving will spend quite a bit of time underwater working towards the PADI Open Water Certification. Those arriving with more experience will get reacquainted with the underwater world by taking a few refresher dives.

During the first week, you’ll also have your first lectures for each of the four college-level courses. While the structure of the syllabi might look familiar, you’ll quickly find that learning from the deck of a boat couldn’t be more different.

Play Video
Seamester Scuba Diving
Exploring the Underwater Realm
20-25 Dives

Between the Caribbean and the South Pacific, students onboard Argo during the Caribbean to Tahiti voyage will experience some of the world’s best scuba diving. Over the course of the 90-day voyage, you’ll become an experienced diver, completing between 20 and 25 dives. However, the novelty of breathing underwater won’t disappear.

Whether working towards a new certification in 15 feet of water, researching on a barrier reef, or just exploring a wreck at 100 ft. – you’ll gain a lifetime worth of stories from places few people get to see.

If you’re new to diving, you’ll earn the PADI Open Water Dive Certification as well as the Advanced Open Water Dive Certification. Depending on time, conditions and student interest, many groups also earn the PADI Rescue Diver certification. If you’re already an experienced diver, you can work all the way up to the professional Divemaster certification. If you feel that scuba diving is a passion, this is definitely the voyage to consider.

seamester-guadeloupe-abroad
Anchors Down – Guadeloupe & Les Saints
(2-3 Days)

After the completion of your first passage, you’ll arrive in what seems like a different world from the one you left behind.  Guadeloupe & Les Saintes are to this day considered to be a region of France so the minute you step off the boat you’ll find yourself fully immersed in this enclave of European culture. Hike to Fort Napoleon, enjoy an espresso after siesta, or take out a Hobie Cat with one of your shipmates to live the lifestyle unique to this small corner of the world.

>Next stop: Dominica
hiking-the-caribbean-college
Dominica
(3-5 Days)

Although you can see Dominica from Les Saintes, the cultures of these neighbors might as well come from different sides of the planet. Nicknamed the Nature Isle of the Caribbean, Dominica is often considered one of our students’ favorite islands of the voyage.  With the help of our good friends, local Dominicans Pancho and Sea Cat, you’ll hike through the rainforest to the world’s largest boiling lake, all while refreshing yourself in one of its dozens of natural hot springs.

>Next stop: Bonaire & Aruba
bonaire-windsurf-lessons
Bonaire and Aruba
(2-4 Days)

The ABC islands might be just off the coast of Venezuela but life on shore is closer to life in the Netherlands. Windsurfers from all over the world flock to the windward side of Bonaire where the conditions are ideal for experts and beginners alike! The island also offers some of the best deep diving, wildlife, and pristine reefs – and it’s all accessible directly from the beach!

>Next stop: Cartagena
cartegena-study-abroad-colombia
Cartagena, Colombia
(1-3 Days)

As a Unesco world heritage site, Cartagena’s colonial city is one of South America’s most enthralling destinations. The vast network of plazas and churches connected by cobbled alleyways is enough to explore for weeks. Time in the open air cafes on the fashionable peninsula of Boca Grande with shipmates who are quickly becoming like a second family is a perfect way to say goodbye to the Caribbean.

>Next stop: Panama
panama-study-abroad-canal
The Panama Canal
(6-8 Days)

When you reach the 81-foot high steel gates of the first lock in the Panama Canal, you’ll understand why it is considered one of the greatest engineering achievements ever completed by human beings. With the help of your crew and the Panamanian dock workers, you’ll connect two different worlds over the course of several days with multiple opportunities to explore the crossroads of the Americas.

>Next stop: Galapagos
Play Video
seamester-sailing-video
Rite of Passage
Life and Rhythm on the Big Blue

It’s amazing to enter the Pacific and reflect on what you’ve already accomplished but once life at sea starts to become your new normal, after you’ve gone through your station drills, man overboard scenarios, fire drills etc. – it will be time to put your new skills to the test on this transoceanic passage. From here on out, the distances between ports becomes greater. You’ll cross the equator, battle squalls, navigate the doldrums and make the tradewinds work for you as you learn to soak in passage life. Throughout your 90-day voyage, the longest passage can be up to 20 days long with the average passage being 2-5 days. Make no mistake, as a Sea|mester student you are not a passenger, you are the crew responsible for making the ship sail. You’ll be an integral part of a watch team sharing the responsibility of navigation, bow watch, engine checks, sail trim and steering the ship to its intended destination.

community-service-study-abroad

Giving Back
10-20 Service Hours

As you hop from country to country and culture to culture, you’ll quickly realize how much you gain from each stop along the way. It’s natural to feel as though you should be giving back in some way. Unique to the Caribbean to Tahiti voyage, you’ll have the opportunity to do just that with many of the friends and partner organizations Sea|mester has picked up along the way. Whether it’s cultural exchange at an elementary school in Dominica or working alongside endangered giant tortoises at the Charles Darwin Research center in the Galapagos – you’ll leave knowing you’ve made a positive impact on the places that have given so much to you.

galapagos-with-seamester
Anchors Down – The Galapagos Islands
(3-5 Days)

Known to many as the archipelago that inspired Charles Darwin’s “Origin of Species,” the Galapagos islands will live up to every bit of hype that surrounds them. Here you’ll swim with sea lions and tour the Darwin Research Center with 100 year-old tortoises, blue-footed boobies and the world’s only marine iguanas. You’ll explore hidden freshwater pools, traverse the highlands, and dive alongside the world’s friendliest sharks in the land that time forgot.

>Next stop: Marquesas
marquesas-transpacific-semester-abroad
Marquesas Islands
(3-5 Days)

You’ll have some mixed emotions about planting your feet on solid ground after roughly 17 days at sea but the hills of The Marquesas Islands and the adventure they promise are bound to excite you. You’ll get the chance to properly stretch your legs on a hike through dense forests and while advanced divers run training scenarios in Hakatea Bay everybody gets to enjoy some downtime and get used to the boat at anchor. Although Marquesas represents the first port of call in French Polynesia, you are still over 750 nautical miles from the final destination of this voyage.

>Next stop: Tuamotus
tuamotos-transpacific-study-abroad
Tuamotus
(2-4 Days)

The beauty of atolls is nearly impossible to describe. They form after islands sink but the barrier reefs continue to grow. You’ll put your navigation skills to the test by guiding Argo through the barrier islands and drop the anchor in a South Pacific paradise. The pristine reefs and the wildlife that live here are ideal for fun dives and exploring the famous black pearl farms that drive the local economy.

>Next stop: Tahiti
moorea-semester-at-sea
Moorea & Tahiti
(1-3 Days)

The astounding beauty of Moorea and Tahiti make the perfect backdrop for not only finishing up the academic aspect of the journey but also reflecting on the time you’ve spent onboard your new floating home. Boom swings, scavenger hunts, and long days of onshore exploration help you realize just how close you’ve gotten to everyone onboard. A drive by the main island’s airport on the way to surf the infamous waves of Teahupo’o acts as a gentle reminder to soak in this beautiful place as your voyage of a lifetime comes to an end.

>Next stop: real life.
get-your-captains-license

First Step to Becoming a Captain!
Academics

For those who have the prior requisite experience, a passion for sailing, and hope to work in the maritime industry, all our 80 & 90-day voyages aboard S/Y Argo offer the Professional Skipper and Crew Training course (PSCT).

Typically only 3 to 4 students will choose to take this course. You’ll have the opportunity to work towards your Master of Yachts 200 Ton Offshore License by completing the theory portion. This course contains in-depth examinations covering subjects such as Meteorology, Navigation, Tides & Currents, and Collision Regulations.

Play Video
accredited-academics-seamester
Academics Aboard
12 USF Credits

Throughout the voyage, it’s easy to forget that this is College even though academics are an integral part of the experience. Our instructors schedule 3 or 4 lectures, discussions, or labs per class each week and each course includes quizzes, research projects, midterms, and finals.

Learning in an environment that combines academia with experience allows you to truly interact with your education. It brings academics to life, adding relevance and practical application to the material. Learning has never been this fun!

Time to Say Goodbye

The best way to explain what it means to say goodbye after such an incredible experience is to use the words from someone who had to do just that…

“This trip started out with many “firsts.” The first time we stepped foot on Argo, the first time we were underway, the first time we raised the sails, the first time the head was clogged, the first time we went bilge diving, the first time we really felt like a team. As the trip progressed we became a family, we learned to live in a small space with a large number of people. We learned to appreciate great conversations and beautiful sunsets. We learned how to be busy, and cram a week's worth of activity in one day, but we also learned how to do nothing, how to just be content in each other's company during our 17-day passage halfway across the Pacific Ocean. Throughout this trip, we covered 6804 nautical miles making 14 stops along the way. However, as the trip came to a close, the trip started to be about the “lasts.” The last swim, the last sail raise, the last passage, the last squeeze question, and the last night together as a boat [At this moment, Emily begins crying and hands the blog off to Ford to finish it]. The shipmates want to thank the Argo staff for making this experience so unforgettable.”
Leah S. Papeete, Tahiti
Day 62
By Macaire L.

Spaghetti and Meatballs

Today was a beautiful day. It started off last night with some of the most amazing bioluminescence of the entire…

Read More
Day 66
By Riley G.

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. It’s the word you say when you don’t know what to say. Let me tell you, friends, not knowing…

Read More
Day 69
By Una O.

Almost halfway there!

Today’s 4-8 watch, with the (mostly) clear sky full of stars brightening up into another beautiful sunset, set me off…

Read More
Day 72
By Amanda C.

So near and yet so far

Today dawned bright and early as Watch Team 2 saw a beautiful sunrise accompanied by a glimpse of land! On…

Read More
Day 64
By Giselle L.

Getting stuck into it

Hey Everybody! I am happy to report that it feels like we’re all embracing the rhythm of passage – 4ams…

Read More
Day 74
By Elie G.

Into the unknown

At the beginning of this passage, someone said that a couple of weeks into a long passage, people begin to…

Read More
Day 65
By Renee P.

HBD FRANKIE!!!!! (our resident shark-lover)

to all Argo’s loyal fans out there: hello; it is I, your skipper of the day, r-dawgg (renee perry). for…

Read More
Day 59
By Nick S.

A Funday on Sunday

Another beautiful day following the South Equatorial Current. Day 4 or 5 of passage depending on who you ask. It…

Read More
Day 61
By Frankie G.

Mamma Mia Fan Club!

Hi families!! Here is a recap of another day conquering the Pacific ocean. Watch team 3 (the superior watch team)…

Read More
Day 63
By Elle E.

Half way to French Polynesia

Today started off as an early one as watch team 2 took over the deck from watch team 1 at…

Read More
Day 57
By Izzy L.

Another epic sailing day

Day 2 of our 5 week passage! We are all settling well into our new watch teams. Obviously Watch Team…

Read More
Day 60
By Steph T.

An Extra Hour of Sleep

We are officially through day 6 of our passage, which means that my abs have been engaged for six straight…

Read More
Day 58
By Gabe C.

Sedermester

Once again I find myself privileged to be the skipper of the day. This day was much like the ones…

Read More
Day 71
By Lauren S.

Hello French Polynesia

Over the past few days we have reached some exciting milestones to add to our logbooks. Yesterday, Tim spotted a…

Read More
Day 73
By Marina C.

Argo TED talks

Hello families!!! Another day traversing the Pacific began bright and early with another stunning sunrise and watch team 1 leading…

Read More
Day 76
By Sam P.

Stormy Pacific

Shower Time! After clear skies and lots of sunlight for the past 3 weeks, we’ve had a little bit of…

Read More
Day 67
By Bella B.

Sailing the Seas

After last night’s 8 p.m.-12 a.m watch where we all got to sit under a star-filled sky and hear dolphins…

Read More
Day 75
By Lewis T.

"If you could live inside an animal, what would be your favourite dessert"? / Meet our Watch Teams

Hello peeps! Lewis from Argo here, still somewhere in the middle of the Pacific Ocean… Another sunny day, finished off…

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Day 68
By Louis A.

Emergency Frist Responders

Today watch team 3 started with the 12 am to 4 am watch. Frankie spent a considerable amount of time…

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Day 70
By Trevor S.

Letters from the Argonauts

I’ll keep it short. Today we jibed first thing after the sun rose. We then enjoyed a lunch of leftovers…

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Trip Logs

Need More Information?

Vocational Certifications

Depending upon previous experience, students will have the opportunity to complete a number of the following certifications during their voyage.

  • Seamester is a PADI 5 Star Resort

    Scuba Certifications

    Open Water Diver
    Advanced Open Water Diver
    Rescue Diver
    Divemaster
    Learn more about scuba
     

  • Seamester is an International Yacht Training partner school

    Sailing Certifications

    International Crew
    VHF Operator
    Navigation Master
    Master of Yachts 200 Ton Offshore Theory
    Learn more about sailing

  • Seamester Safety Certifications

    Safety Certifications

    Emergency First Response - First Aid & CPR

Need To Know

What is the main focus of this voyage?

Our 90-day Global Sea|mester Voyages offer the most comprehensive experience in terms of the geographical area covered and both academic and vocational classes and certifications earned. During the program, up to 12 academic credits are offered for the Seamanship, Student Leadership, Oceanography, and Marine Biology classes taught aboard. In addition, there are several vocational courses offered for those looking to further their professional development in the maritime industry. For more information on our classes, please visit our academics page.

What Experience Do I Need?

None at all. All you need is a great attitude and a willingness to fully participate in every aspect of the experience.

Who will be my staff?

Six professional staff members live aboard full-time. There will be the Skipper, the First and Second Mate and two Marine Biologists (who are typically scuba diving instructors) and a sixth staff member who could also be an EMT or someone with other special skills. Take a look through our team page for more information.

Meet our team

What's the weather like?

The weather in the Caribbean at the beginning of the trip should be fantastic with some cooler sailing conditions at night and as we begin heading west into the Pacific Ocean. It is likely that we will see varying weather conditions during our westbound crossings from Panama to the Galapagos. Heading west once again we will sail into increasingly hot tropical weather as we approach Tahiti in the spring.

How do I communicate with home?

When we are ashore or close at anchor there will be plenty of opportunities to communicate with friends and family at home. That said, while aboard we have guidelines as to when it is appropriate to use your personal communications devices. The environment we strive to create relies heavily on each individual remaining focused on the group and our experience. Being tied to the modern world of “instant communications” can, in certain circumstances, be a hindrance to the personal and group processes aboard.

Cell Phones: Check with your provider before you go, but so long as you have a sim card, your cell phone will likely work in most global locations.

Internet: While our vessels are not wifi equipped, another way to communicate is by email, text, Facetime or Skype using shore side internet. The internet is often free or available to purchase in most of the locations that we visit.

What is the food like?

Both on the vessel and ashore, the answer is up to you. The vast majority of the meals during your trip are prepared and eaten aboard. For meals aboard, each person on the crew takes a turn as head chef to plan and cook the meals for an entire day with the help of another person acting as sous-chef. We all work to stay within a budget, with both students and staff responsible for stocking the vessels. We endeavor to accommodate everyone aboard while providing what any alumni will tell you, was a great dining adventure. During your free time ashore you will have the opportunity to eat more adventurously. With this voyage starting in the Caribbean, students will get to sample some traditional West Indian meals such as Chicken Roti or some local Salt Fish! Once you pass through the Panama Canal, the Central American and Pacific Island influence will take over. By the end of the trip, most of the crew will have hopefully tried a ‘Poisson cru’ in Tahiti.

What's the typical age of the students?

Sea|mester students range in age from 18 through to about 22. Average age is right around 20, yet this can change from voyage to voyage. Give a call through to the office if you are interested in learning more about the student crew.

Nitty Gritty

Flights
Students come from all over the world, so coordinated travel is vital.

You can choose to book on your own, yet we suggest that you start by requesting a quote from one of our recommended travel partners as they will provide you with service on-beyond an online booking service or search engine.

This voyage is scheduled to:

  • Start in English Harbor, Antigua (airport code ANU)
  • End in Papeete, Tahiti (airport code PPT)

When booking travel, students should be aware that the program start date is the date upon which students should arrive aboard the vessel. The program end date is the date on which students should depart the vessel and start their travel home.

Recommended Travel Agents

a. TRC Travel Center

Leah Hernandez is our primary travel coordinator, and she works for a company called TRC Travel Center. Leah obtains great fares and provides close monitoring and assistance on travel days in case of flight difficulties. Leah will also maintain your flight details in the Student Portal on your behalf, ensuring their accuracy in the event of flight changes. Connect with Leah –
Phone: +1.281.528.7727 (9am – 5pm Central Time)
Email: leahctn68@hotmail.com

b. Global Marine Travel

An alternative is to contact Global Marine Travel (GMT) to request a quote for a “Marine Fare” ticket. Marine Fares may be cheaper or more expensive than a regular fare, but in most cases will be more flexible should you need to change your ticket and will include the provision for a larger number of checked bags. Do the research to figure out which ticket suits you best. Connect with GMT –
Phone: +1.954.761.9595 (24hrs)
Email: info@flygmt.com

When contacting GMT, you will need to reference the following:

  • Organizational Name: Global Expeditions Group
  • Vessel Name (select): Ocean Star, Argo or Vela
  • Vessel Registry: British Virgin Islands

c. Other Booking Options – Air Miles & Self Booking

We cannot be responsible for coordinating flights booked in this way, so please ensure that you are booking the correct itinerary (dates/destination) before purchasing a ticket online or through a source other than our recommended travel partners. If you have any questions regarding the date or time of arrival for your voyage, please call us to confirm any proposed flight itinerary before you book it. Once booked, you will be required to enter, then maintain accurate flight details in the relevant section of the Student Portal.

Travel Docs & Immunizations
Passports

Your passport’s expiration date is of utmost importance to the immigration officials in the countries we visit. Each government mandates a “minimum validity,” with many using a six-month rule, meaning that the visitor’s passport must remain valid for six (6) months AFTER the last day of travel in that country. A few nations have more lenient minimum validity rules, but since we typically visit multiple countries throughout the voyage, meeting the six-month standard is compulsory in most cases. If your passport expires sooner than six months after the final day of your program, we recommend that you talk to the passport office about their backlog and renewal timeframe. You may also contact our office to learn more about whether you would be able to travel on a passport that expires earlier than six months after your trip ends.

Visas

US Citizens: Those traveling on a US passport rarely need to apply for specific country visas in advance of the program. In certain circumstances, we are required to process a vessel cruising permit or visitation visa on your behalf before the trip. If this is the case, we’ll let you know in advance whether there are any steps that we need you to take.

Students traveling on non-U.S. passports: Aside from needing a valid US ESTA to transit through the United States (if applicable), students traveling on a Canadian or an EU passport rarely need to apply for any other specific country visas in advance of the program. Learn more about the ESTA requirements, and whether this applies to you here – https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/.

Citizens of Asian, African, and South American nations may need to apply for specific visas. Since we cannot apply for visas on your behalf, you must take the following steps as soon as you can.

  • Contact our office and request a definitive list of the countries we will visit on the voyage. Please do not rely on the sample itineraries listed on our website.
  • Verify visa requirements for your nationality by contacting the local embassy or consulate for these destination countries.
Immunizations

We know that each individual has unique medical considerations and understand that families have varying opinions on immunizations as a whole. While we are not physicians and cannot provide official or specific medical advice, we recommend that you talk with your healthcare provider to discuss the trip and check that all standard immunizations and boosters are up to date.

The CDC’s (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) website at www.cdc.gov contains an excellent section that focuses on Travelers’ Health. This is a useful resource as you consider which precautions you might want to take. When completing your research, bear in mind that your voyage is almost 100% coastal. Many of the CDC’s recommendations are specific to agricultural or rural areas or regions within the country which we do not visit.

Tuition
Sea|mester tuition includes the following:
  • Sea|mester academic instruction for the applicable courses offered during the voyage
  • University of South Florida (USF) academic credit for all academic classes offered during the program.
  • Full room and board
  • All group excursions, field trips and destination-focused educational experiences
  • Non-professional sailing instruction and certification costs
  • Non-professional scuba instruction and certification costs
Not included in the Sea|mester tuition:
  • Travel expenses from home to the program (flights, visas, ferry, taxi, baggage, taxes, etc.)
  • Required International SOS and MedAire membership & emergency evacuation insurance. (20-day voyages = $85 | 40-day voyages = $150 | 80 & 90-day voyages = $225) LEARN MORE >
  • Vaccinations (if required/selected)
  • In-country COVID-19 testing fees – Dependent on voyage itinerary and individual country health requirements. Expect $200 to $500 USD.
  • PADI required course books and materials
  • Personal spending money
Travel Protection

We recommend that you purchase a travel protection plan to help protect you and your travel investment against the unexpected. Travel protection plans can include coverage for Trip Cancellation, Trip Interruption, Emergency Medical and Emergency Evacuation/Repatriation, Trip Delay, Baggage Delay and more.

For more information on the available plans or to enroll, click on the link below or contact Travelex Insurance Services at 800-228-9792 and reference location number 09-6257.

Please Note: To be eligible for the waiver of pre-existing medical condition exclusion, the protection plan must be purchased within15 days (Travel Basic) or 21 days (Travel Select) from the time you make your initial trip deposit. However, the plan can be purchased any time prior to departure.

The product descriptions provided here are only brief summaries and may be changed without notice. The full coverage terms and details, including limitations and exclusions, are contained in the insurance policy. Travelex CA Agency License #0D10209. All products listed are underwritten by, Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Company (formerly known as Stonewall Insurance Company), 1314 Douglas Street, Suite 1400, Omaha, NE 68102. 11.17 E7N

Voyage Itinerary

Though the fundamentals of our voyages do not change, specific logistics evolve over time and can be subject to change based on any number of factors, most of which relate directly to risk management planning.

For this reason, the map and voyage timeline portions of this page should give you a basic understanding of the places we’ll go and activities we’ll do, but you should expect your voyage to be unique. If you take a look through the Trip Logs for previous voyages you’ll see that they can differ significantly.

With that in mind, we encourage all students to “live in the moment” while on the program. Travel, even on organized trips, requires flexibility and a willingness to accept adversity and change. We hope you’ll take the bumps in stride, and enjoy the adventure!

  • Flights
  • Travel Docs & Immunizations
  • Tuition
  • Voyage Itinerary
  • Students come from all over the world, so coordinated travel is vital.

    You can choose to book on your own, yet we suggest that you start by requesting a quote from one of our recommended travel partners as they will provide you with service on-beyond an online booking service or search engine.

    This voyage is scheduled to:

    • Start in English Harbor, Antigua (airport code ANU)
    • End in Papeete, Tahiti (airport code PPT)

    When booking travel, students should be aware that the program start date is the date upon which students should arrive aboard the vessel. The program end date is the date on which students should depart the vessel and start their travel home.

    Recommended Travel Agents

    a. TRC Travel Center

    Leah Hernandez is our primary travel coordinator, and she works for a company called TRC Travel Center. Leah obtains great fares and provides close monitoring and assistance on travel days in case of flight difficulties. Leah will also maintain your flight details in the Student Portal on your behalf, ensuring their accuracy in the event of flight changes. Connect with Leah –
    Phone: +1.281.528.7727 (9am – 5pm Central Time)
    Email: leahctn68@hotmail.com

    b. Global Marine Travel

    An alternative is to contact Global Marine Travel (GMT) to request a quote for a “Marine Fare” ticket. Marine Fares may be cheaper or more expensive than a regular fare, but in most cases will be more flexible should you need to change your ticket and will include the provision for a larger number of checked bags. Do the research to figure out which ticket suits you best. Connect with GMT –
    Phone: +1.954.761.9595 (24hrs)
    Email: info@flygmt.com

    When contacting GMT, you will need to reference the following:

    • Organizational Name: Global Expeditions Group
    • Vessel Name (select): Ocean Star, Argo or Vela
    • Vessel Registry: British Virgin Islands

    c. Other Booking Options – Air Miles & Self Booking

    We cannot be responsible for coordinating flights booked in this way, so please ensure that you are booking the correct itinerary (dates/destination) before purchasing a ticket online or through a source other than our recommended travel partners. If you have any questions regarding the date or time of arrival for your voyage, please call us to confirm any proposed flight itinerary before you book it. Once booked, you will be required to enter, then maintain accurate flight details in the relevant section of the Student Portal.

  • Passports

    Your passport’s expiration date is of utmost importance to the immigration officials in the countries we visit. Each government mandates a “minimum validity,” with many using a six-month rule, meaning that the visitor’s passport must remain valid for six (6) months AFTER the last day of travel in that country. A few nations have more lenient minimum validity rules, but since we typically visit multiple countries throughout the voyage, meeting the six-month standard is compulsory in most cases. If your passport expires sooner than six months after the final day of your program, we recommend that you talk to the passport office about their backlog and renewal timeframe. You may also contact our office to learn more about whether you would be able to travel on a passport that expires earlier than six months after your trip ends.

    Visas

    US Citizens: Those traveling on a US passport rarely need to apply for specific country visas in advance of the program. In certain circumstances, we are required to process a vessel cruising permit or visitation visa on your behalf before the trip. If this is the case, we’ll let you know in advance whether there are any steps that we need you to take.

    Students traveling on non-U.S. passports: Aside from needing a valid US ESTA to transit through the United States (if applicable), students traveling on a Canadian or an EU passport rarely need to apply for any other specific country visas in advance of the program. Learn more about the ESTA requirements, and whether this applies to you here – https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/.

    Citizens of Asian, African, and South American nations may need to apply for specific visas. Since we cannot apply for visas on your behalf, you must take the following steps as soon as you can.

    • Contact our office and request a definitive list of the countries we will visit on the voyage. Please do not rely on the sample itineraries listed on our website.
    • Verify visa requirements for your nationality by contacting the local embassy or consulate for these destination countries.
    Immunizations

    We know that each individual has unique medical considerations and understand that families have varying opinions on immunizations as a whole. While we are not physicians and cannot provide official or specific medical advice, we recommend that you talk with your healthcare provider to discuss the trip and check that all standard immunizations and boosters are up to date.

    The CDC’s (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) website at www.cdc.gov contains an excellent section that focuses on Travelers’ Health. This is a useful resource as you consider which precautions you might want to take. When completing your research, bear in mind that your voyage is almost 100% coastal. Many of the CDC’s recommendations are specific to agricultural or rural areas or regions within the country which we do not visit.

  • Sea|mester tuition includes the following:
    • Sea|mester academic instruction for the applicable courses offered during the voyage
    • University of South Florida (USF) academic credit for all academic classes offered during the program.
    • Full room and board
    • All group excursions, field trips and destination-focused educational experiences
    • Non-professional sailing instruction and certification costs
    • Non-professional scuba instruction and certification costs
    Not included in the Sea|mester tuition:
    • Travel expenses from home to the program (flights, visas, ferry, taxi, baggage, taxes, etc.)
    • Required International SOS and MedAire membership & emergency evacuation insurance. (20-day voyages = $85 | 40-day voyages = $150 | 80 & 90-day voyages = $225) LEARN MORE >
    • Vaccinations (if required/selected)
    • In-country COVID-19 testing fees – Dependent on voyage itinerary and individual country health requirements. Expect $200 to $500 USD.
    • PADI required course books and materials
    • Personal spending money
    Travel Protection

    We recommend that you purchase a travel protection plan to help protect you and your travel investment against the unexpected. Travel protection plans can include coverage for Trip Cancellation, Trip Interruption, Emergency Medical and Emergency Evacuation/Repatriation, Trip Delay, Baggage Delay and more.

    For more information on the available plans or to enroll, click on the link below or contact Travelex Insurance Services at 800-228-9792 and reference location number 09-6257.

    Please Note: To be eligible for the waiver of pre-existing medical condition exclusion, the protection plan must be purchased within15 days (Travel Basic) or 21 days (Travel Select) from the time you make your initial trip deposit. However, the plan can be purchased any time prior to departure.

    The product descriptions provided here are only brief summaries and may be changed without notice. The full coverage terms and details, including limitations and exclusions, are contained in the insurance policy. Travelex CA Agency License #0D10209. All products listed are underwritten by, Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Company (formerly known as Stonewall Insurance Company), 1314 Douglas Street, Suite 1400, Omaha, NE 68102. 11.17 E7N

  • Though the fundamentals of our voyages do not change, specific logistics evolve over time and can be subject to change based on any number of factors, most of which relate directly to risk management planning.

    For this reason, the map and voyage timeline portions of this page should give you a basic understanding of the places we’ll go and activities we’ll do, but you should expect your voyage to be unique. If you take a look through the Trip Logs for previous voyages you’ll see that they can differ significantly.

    With that in mind, we encourage all students to “live in the moment” while on the program. Travel, even on organized trips, requires flexibility and a willingness to accept adversity and change. We hope you’ll take the bumps in stride, and enjoy the adventure!