Cruise Type
Ship
Date
Days
Destination
Information
Luxury Explorer Cruise
Le Bougainville
19.01.2020
27.01.2020
8
Africa, Asia, The Essential Seychelles
Fare from € 3,580
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Travelroute
Day 1

Victoria, Mahé

Discover Mahé, the main island of the Seychelles and also the largest of the archipelago, home to the capital, Victoria. Mahé has almost 70 beaches of fine sand, framed by the emblematic granite rocks, and whose crystal clear waters are renowned for their rich underwater life. The island is also famous for its splendid mountain panoramas accessible on hikes, such as the Morne Seychellois, which is 905 metres high and overlooks the Indian Ocean. Mahé is also an island full of history where fine colonial properties rub shoulders with Creole houses - and don’t forget the marvellous Botanical Gardens in Victoria.

Day 2

Sainte Anne Marine National Park

Day 3

Saint Joseph Atoll

Day 4

Curieuse Island

Situated off the coast of Praslin, Curieuse has a distinguishing feature: its red earth. Discovered in 1768 by the French explorer Marc-Joseph Marion du Fresne, it was ravaged by a fire in 1771 and then home to a leper colony of which a few vestiges still remain. Declared a national marine park in 1979, it is home to many underwater species, which can be discovered while scuba diving or snorkelling in the idyllic waters of the Indian Ocean. But above all, Curieuse is renowned for the hundreds of Aldabra giant tortoises that live there. It is highly likely that you will get the chance to meet these fascinating reptiles. Along with Praslin, it is also the only island on which the sea coconut grows wild.

Day 5

Aride Island

Aride is an island in the Seychelles situated a few kilometres north-west of Praslin. Listed as a nature reserve, this pearl of the Indian Ocean will seduce you with the beauty of its landscapes of wild cliffs and fine-sand beaches. Protected from human impact and sometimes called “bird capital”, it is home to several endemic plants as well as exceptional wildlife. Most notably, it is the refuge of an impressive number of seabirds (Seychelles magpie-robins, terns, noddies, and more), and reptiles, such as Wright’s skinks, which can be found in the island’s wooded areas. Sea turtles can also be observed on the island’s beaches, and boxfish can be admired while scuba diving in the surrounding waters.

Day 6

Grande Sœur

Day 7

Praslin Island

Situated some forty kilometres away from Victoria, Praslin is the second largest island in the Seychelles. Its idyllic beaches where granite rocks nestle in immaculate sand correspond perfectly to how we imagine the Seychelles to be. They invite visitors to dive into the turquoise waters, which are ideal for snorkelling. In the centre of the island, hidden in the heart of a stunning tropical rainforest, lies the Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In this veritable plant sanctuary, several endemic species of palm trees can be observed, as well as the famous sea coconut, which can weigh up to 20 kg and is sometimes called “coco fesse” because its shape calls to mind a pair of buttocks.

Day 8

La Digue Island

A sprinkling of islands scattered in the Indian Ocean, the Seychelles exude calm and beauty against a backdrop of leafy coconut trees, white sand and crystal-clear water. In addition to the tranquility of its green lagoons and its idyllic beaches, this remote paradise also boasts an exceptional fauna and flora. In the many parks and nature reserves, come and observe colourful birds, giant turtles and the numerous marine species living in the turquoise waters. Before reaching the archipelago’s capital, Mahe, your ship will introduce you to La Digue. Time stands still here on this small stretch of land protected from all motorised traffic, where the only mode of transport is the bicycle or the oxcart.

Day 9

Victoria, Mahé

Disembarkation

Overview

The Essential Seychelles

On this brand-new itinerary, PONANT invites you to discover the must-see jewels of the Seychelles. On Mahé, you will board Le Bougainville for a 9-day expedition cruise to the heart of this archipelago’s Inner Islands for a glimpse of paradise.
The first stop on your cruise: Sainte Anne Marine National Park, whose coral reefs are home to stunning species, guaranteeing unforgettable snorkelling.
On Curieuse Island, reputed for its red earth and for the Aldabra giant tortoises that have taken up residence there, take an excursion to the heart of the mangrove. You will then discover Aride, an unspoiled delight of the Indian Ocean, home to thousands of birds including some endemic species.
In Praslin, don’t miss the chance to visit the Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve. There you will find sea coconuts, gigantic endemic fruits with a very evocative shape, nicknamed the “love nut”.
Palm trees, granite rock, white sand and crystal-clear water then await you on Grande Sœur and La Digue. The beaches on these two stunning islands are each more beautiful than the next, guaranteeing moments of relaxation that will live up to your fantasies of the Seychelles.
The encounters with the wildlife described above illustrate possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed.
Highlights
Landing in Zodiac®inflatables with a team of experienced naturalist guides • UNESCO site: the Vallée de Mai nature reserve in Praslin. • Discover 8 islands in the Seychelles on a single cruise • The Aride nature reserve, a treasure of the Seychelles with some 73 hectares of colourful vegetation and more than one million birds • The bare red earth of Curieuse, a granite island in the Seychelles • Anse Source d’Argent, the most famous beach of La Digue, surrounded by large blocks of granite and edged with coconut palms • Possibility of observing tortoises on Saint Joseph and Curieuse • Encounters with the locals • Possibility of diving (PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or equivalent) with an experienced instructor on board and of snorkelling with your expedition team

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Ship information

Le Bougainville

Featuring innovative and environmentally-friendly equipment, elegantly designed staterooms, spacious suites with large windows, and lounge areas that open onto the outside, this new limited-capacity yacht boasting just 92 staterooms and suites will offer you a truly unique cruising experience.

As the first ship in a new series that remains true to the Ponant's spirit, Le Bougainville will embody the unique atmosphere that is the cruise line’s hallmark: a subtle blend of refinement, intimacy and comfort.

Aboard this ship that flies the French flag, you will experience the incomparable pleasure of an intimate cruise, with the possibility of exploring an ever-increasing range of destinations in an ethnic-chic ambiance with luxury service.

Experience a luxurious setting where the accent is on authenticity and passion for travel.

Contact
Booking
Luxury Expedition
Silver Cloud
19.01.2020
29.01.2020
10
Antarctica, Latin America, Classic Antarctica
Fare from € 16,470
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Travelroute
Day 1

Ushuaia, Argentina

Departing from Buenos Aires, fly to Ushuaia and transfer to the port. Embark Silver Cloud, settle in and attend a mandatory safety drill before leaving port. During the afternoon you will be introduced to some of the important crew members and your Expedition Team. At sail-away bid farewell to Tierra del Fuego, the ‘Land at the End of the World’.

Day 2

Drake Passage

The Drake Passage has a notorious reputation for its turbulent seas due to the westerly winds and the funnelling effect of the passage’s seafloor. While crossing the Drake Passage we will encounter the Antarctic Convergence, a natural boundary between cold polar water flowing northward and warmer water moving southward. The Antarctic Convergence is not a fixed line but moving, depending on the season. Where these two currents meet, nutrients are pushed to the surface, often attracting a multitude of seabirds and whales. Spend some time on deck watching the Black-browed Albatross, Sooty Shearwaters and White-chinned Petrels gliding in the air currents of Silver Cloud’s wake. As we set sail on our initial transit, familiarise yourself with the elegant Silver Cloud and the Expedition Team members.Attend wildlife, geography and history discussions hosted by our expert naturalists and guest lecturers that will prepare you for the exciting adventures that lie ahead.

Day 3

Drake Passage

Day 4

Antarctic Peninsula

While sailing to Antarctica in early December the winter pack ice is breaking up and melting. Every turn can reveal a new and breath-taking adventure. As the pack ice becomes thicker, it becomes apparent to everyone that we are moving closer into Antarctica’s vast white wilderness. Remote and otherworldly, Antarctica is irresistible for its spectacular iceberg sculptures, calving glaciers, and for the possibility of close encounters with marine mammals. Watch for seals sunbathing on slow-moving ice floes and for humpback, Minke, and orca whales to surface from below the frigid waters. Each day we will attempt Zodiac departures, and, if conditions permit, we will cruise amidst colourful icebergs or step ashore to visit a variety of penguin rookeries and perhaps scientific research stations on complimentary excursions led by our team of natural history experts. A flexible itinerary allows us to take advantage of favourable sea and weather conditions. In the true spirit of expedition cruising, each day the Expedition Leader and Captain will determine our best course depending on weather, ice conditions and wildlife we may encounter. Here are some of the places we may visit: Antarctic Sound Named after Nordenskjöld’s ship, this 30 miles long stretch of water at the north end of the Antarctic Peninsula offers some of the best tabular iceberg observations. Brown Bluff, Tabarin Peninsula (a 2,200-foot bluff on mainland Antarctica) Brown Bluff is an ice-capped, 745-metre-high, flat-topped mountain with a prominent cliff of reddish-brown volcanic rock. Adelie and Gentoo Penguins, Kelp Gulls, and Cape Petrels use this as a breeding area. Birds such as the all-white Snow Petrel and skuas may be seen from a distance. As you explore the area, a Weddell seal may be seen basking in the sunlight. Wait long enough and you will see the Adelie Penguins standing along the shore finally making their way into the surf. Cuverville Island, Errera Channel The island was discovered by Gerlache’s Belgian Antarctic expedition of 1897–99, and was named for a vice admiral in the French navy. Large bare rock areas provide nesting sites for Gentoo Penguins. Snow Petrels and Cape Petrels also may be seen whilst Wilson’s Storm Petrels nest in the higher scree of the island. If conditions permit, a hike towards the top of the island will permit stunning views of the surrounding mountains and channels. During Zodiac tours around the many icebergs, hauled-out Weddell seals may be seen. Paradise Bay (Antarctic Peninsula) The bay is well named for its spectacular scenery of mountains, glaciers and icebergs. From the ship, observe Argentina’s “Base Almirante Brown”, and the Chilean station “Gonzalez Videla”, two of many Antarctic research stations that are manned periodically. Here, you can actually set foot on mainland Antarctica. View the wildlife from sea level while cruising in your Zodiac with one of our experienced Expedition Team members. Neko Harbor (Antarctic Peninsula) The site is named after a whale factory ship, which often used this bay –and Neko Harbor still today offers good chances to see whales. A landing will provide an opportunity to see Gentoo Penguin rookeries and quite possibly Weddell seals and crabeater seals hauled out on the cobble beach. A hike to a lookout point will be a good exercise and will be rewarded with panoramic views of the glacier, Andvord Bay and the Gerlache Strait. Port Foster, Whalers Bay (Deception Island) Deception Island is home to a collapsed volcano and an excellent example of a caldera where it is believed that the volcano’s summit collapsed with one section sinking far enough to allow the sea to flood the interior. We plan to sail inside this breached wall through a narrow entrance called Neptune’s Bellows. Our resident geologist will take the opportunity to explain the unique volcanic features of the area while our naturalists might introduce you to the whaling history of Deception Island. Still visible on the island are the boilers used to make whale oil in the early 1900s. Port Lockroy, Goudier Island The British built a listening station here during WWII, which was then used as a research station in the 1950s and since 1996 as a museum and gift shop. Snowy Sheathbills and Gentoo Penguins roam outside the museum. Have a look to see how science was done in Antarctica more than 50 years ago. A post-office and mailbox are located inside the former station.

Day 5

Antarctic Peninsula

Day 6

Antarctic Peninsula

Day 7

Antarctic Peninsula

Day 8

Antarctic Peninsula

Day 9

Drake Passage return

Navigating our return through the Drake Passage, we will watch for seabirds and wildlife we may have missed on the first leg. Take this opportunity to attend additional presentations offered by the Expedition Team lecturers and to edit photos. The Captain will invite you and your new friends to the Farewell Cocktail, as we travel towards Ushuaia.

Day 10

Drake Passage return

Day 11

Ushuaia, Argentina

After breakfast, disembark Silver Cloud and transfer to Ushuaia International Airport for your return flight to Buenos Aires.

Please Note: expedition highlights and wildlife listed here are possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed. Your Expedition Leader and Captain will work together to ensure opportunities for adventure and exploration are the best possible, taking into account the prevailing weather, wildlife activity and ice conditions. Expedition Team members scheduled for this voyage are subject to change or cancellation.

Overview

Classic Antarctica

Traversing Drake’s eponymous passage is a must for any explorer. With diverse seabirds attracted to the area, have your binoculars and cameras ready and as you sail closer to the Antarctic Peninsula, look for seals basking on ice floes, Macaroni penguin, and the prodigious Orca whale. Begin and end your expedition at the “world’s end”, Ushuaia.
INCLUDED IN THE CRUISE FARE: one night pre cruise hotel, transfers (between airport/hotel and ship), charter flight to/ from Ushuaia.

Highlights

Marvel at spectacular iceberg sculptures and calving glaciers • Set foot on the continent and mainland of Antarctica • Encounter Gentoo, Chinstrap and Adelie Penguins • Spot elephant seals, Weddell seals, leopard seals and crabeater seals • Watch for whales – humpback, Minke, orca, pilot, and beaked whales • Identify Snowy Sheathbill, Antarctic Cormorant, Kelp Gull, Antarctic Tern, Cape Petrels, Wandering Albatrosses, Southern Fulmars, Blue-eyed Shags, Southern Giant Petrels, skuas, Black-browed Albatrosses, Wilson’s Storm Petrels, and other seabirds

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Ship information

Silver Cloud

Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition

Length: 157 m.

Passenger Capacity: 254

Crew Capacity: 212

Built: 1994 Refurbished & Rebranded: 2017

After extensive refurbishment, Silver Cloud will be the most spacious and comfortable ice class vessel in expedition cruising. Her large suites, her destination itineraries and her unparalleled service make her truly special. Her five dining options will tantalise your taste buds and as 80% of her suites include a veranda, watching a breaching whale or a few cavorting penguins has never been so personal. Broad sweeping decks with multiple open spaces and a swimming pool complete what is surely the most distinctive expedition ship sailing today.

A limited number of guests, particularly with just 200 in polar waters, mean that Silver Cloud has the highest space to guest and crew ratios in expedition cruising. With her 18 zodiacs, possibilities are almost limitless with ship-wide simultaneous explorations. Finally, a team of 19 passionate and dedicated experts are always at hand to ensure your voyage is enhanced every step of the way.

Contact
Booking
Small Ship Cruise
Coral Expeditions II
20.01.2020
24.01.2020
4
Australia and NZ, Great Barrier Reef - 5 Days Cruise
Fare from € 1,550
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Travelroute
Day 1

Cairns

Board at Cairns Cruise Liner Terminal at 4:00pm. Cruise Trinity Bay and take in the views of Double Island and Palm Cove while enjoying welcome drinks and the seafood buffet.

Day 2

Cooktown and Lizard Island

Discover historic Cooktown, with building dating back to the 1870s. Visit the botanic gardens and the James Cook Museum to see original artefacts from the HMB Endeavour. Enjoy an afternoon snorkel and sunset drinks at Turtle Beach on Lizard Island, and see giant trevally and tawny nurse sharks during an after dinner fish feed off the back deck.

Day 3

Lizard Island and Ribbon Reefs

Enjoy the breath-taking natural beauty of Lizard Island. Join an optional hike to Cook’s Look in the early morning to survey the reef. Learn about the tragic fate of Mary Watson and snorkel from the beach over giant clam gardens. This afternoon visit the pristine Ribbon Reef #9 for snorkelling and diving.

Day 4

Ribbon Reefs

Spend a full day discovering the out Barrier Reef, with snorkelling, diving, and marine biologist led tours of Ribbon Reef #3 and Escape Reef.

Day 5

Cairns

Disembark in Cairns at 8:00am.

Overview

Great Barrier Reef – 5 Days Cruise

Our 4-night Cairns – Lizard Island – Cairns cruise is the perfect option for those guests wanting to spend the maximum amount of time exploring the colourful coral gardens of the World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef. Enjoy a full day to discover two different sections of the rarely visited Ribbon Reefs, considered to be the most colourful and pristine reefs found anywhere along the entire length of the Great Barrier Reef, as well as the wonderful fringing reefs off Lizard Island and Two Isles. You will also have the opportunity to explore historic Cooktown and savour a full morning discovering spectacular Lizard Island.
For guests wanting to spend as much time as possible discovering the reefs of the Tropical North, whilst still enjoying time ashore, this itinerary offers you plenty of time to come face to face with the very best parts of the Great Barrier Reef.
Please note: post cruise transfer to city centre hotels or Cairns airport is included.
Highlights

The complete Great Barrier Reef experience. Snorkel over colourful coral gardens, stroll golden sandy beaches and wander rainforest trails • Secluded gourmet beach BBQ • Experience the World Heritage-listed reef from our private moorings away from the tourist crowds • Be guided by an expert Marine Biologist on glass bottom boat and snorkelling tours • Informative presentations and educational documentaries • History and cultures of the region and early explorers • Join an optional resort or certified SCUBA dive on the outer reef

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Ship information

Coral Expeditions II

Vessel Type: Motor Catamaran
Length: 35 metres
Passenger Capacity: 46
Built: 1996 refurbished in 2015
Refurbished during early 2015, Coral Expeditions II is fully equipped for the ultimate Great Barrier Reef cruising experience. Australian flagged, registered and staffed, Coral Expeditions II was purpose-built for cruising in our region and is the ideal size to access the very best parts of the Great Barrier Reef.
The 22 onboard rooms feature traditional maritime stylings with wood panelled walls. You can choose between double and twin bedded rooms, each fully equipped with a private ensuite, air conditioning and ample storage space. All rooms feature large picture windows, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the spectacular scenery.
The ship’s spacious lounge is a great place to relax and enjoy a drink from the cocktail bar in air-conditioned comfort, and features a comprehensive reference library and plasma screens. The large Sun Deck is another popular place to relax and take in the sights, with comfortable deck chairs and teak furnishings. You will also enjoy the opportunity to dine al fresco under the magnificent stars over the Great Barrier Reef.
Meals are served in the atmospheric Dining Room, and with space for all guests to dine during one sitting and no assigned seating, meal times are a great opportunity to get to know your fellow travellers.
Coral Expeditions II operates an open bridge policy, allowing you to spend time with the Captain and his maritime crew as we cruise. Follow our progression on the ship’s charts and chat with the Captain, or simply sit back, relax and enjoy the scenery. Coral Expeditions II is fitted with modern safety and navigation equipment.
Contact
Booking
Luxury Expedition
Coral Discoverer
22.01.2020
29.01.2020
7
Australia and NZ, Pristine Tasmania
Fare from € 3.650
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Travelroute
Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Hobart - Woodbridge & Huon River

Board at Hobart’s Princes Wharf at 4:00pm for 5:00pm departure. Meet and mingle with fellow guests at the Captain’s Welcome Drinks.

Learn about the process of sheep cheese-making at the family-run Grandvewe Cheeses, and at the cellar door enjoy a taste of their ‘ewenique’ sheep’s whey vodka. Visit either the Woodbridge Marine Discovery Centre or Pepperberries Garden Café and Art Farm for a walk through lavender fields, enjoying their fine collection of sculptures. Cruise the Huon River and visit the township of Franklin and the Wooden Boat Centre.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Port Davey & Bathurst Harbour

A marine reserve, and part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area, Port Davey is Tasmania untouched. If conditions allow, guests will spend one to two full days exploring this pristine wilderness, and enjoy the unforgettable experience of kayaking in Bathurst Harbour. Otherwise accessible only via a seven-day hike or charter flight, Port Davey feels like an endless uncharted wilderness, full of sheltered bays filled with endemic marine life. In Port Davey, you’ll disembark to explore the ‘Narrows’ aboard our tender and take a guided hike of Balmoral Hill or the Mount Beattie Track. Take in the surrounds of Melaleuca and the Needwonnee Walk, named after the tribe whose homelands extended throughout this area.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Bruny Island & Adventure Bay

Experience the rugged beauty of the Fluted Cape as you walk along the sheer coastal cliffs or cruise in our Xplorer vessel for a closer look around Penguin Island under the spectacular dolerite formations. Learn about the rich maritime history of Adventure Bay as you meander past the ruins of old whaling stations under the shade She Oaks on the way to Grassy Point.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Freycinet National Park & Wineglass Bay

The spectacular peninsula of Freycinet is crafted from pink granite peaks – the Hazard mountains – surrounded by azure bays, and backed by dry eucalypt forest. At Freycinet National Park, guests can join an optional guided hike (approx. two hours) to the Wineglass Bay beach via the lookout or Isthmus Track, consistently voted one of the most breathtaking beaches in the world. Witness numerous fur seals lounging on the rocks on the Ile des Phoques, a small rocky island between Freycinet Peninsula and Maria Island.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Maria Island National Park

Walk amongst the historic ruins, secluded bays and rugged cliffs of Maria Island National Park, and you can expect to meet local endemic wildlife such as Forester Kangaroos, Bennetts Wallabies and Wombats. Visit World Heritage-listed Darlington; take in the dramatic Painted and Fossil Cliffs, walk to the convict ruins of Point Lesueur at Long Point.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Tasman National Park

Feel small as you stand beside the 300 metre sea cliffs and monumental rock formations of Tasman National Park. See sea stacks – tall dolerite formations – stand tall, and view the Tasman Arch, The Candlestick and Cathedral from a perfect positions at sea. An area of huge natural diversity, it is possible guests may come across Australian Fur Seals “hauling out” on the rocky shore at Tasman Island, as well as dolphins and albatross which are often sighted in this region.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Port Arthur Historic Site - Hobart

A unique experience awaits at the UNESCO World Heritage listed Port Arthur Historic Site. Australia’s most intact convict site, between 1833 and 1877 the penal colony housed Britain and Australia’s worst criminals, and was considered inescapable. Today, the Historic Site has over 30 buildings, ruins and restored period homes set in 100 acres of landscaped grounds. In the company of Port Arthur’s resident Archaeologist, join an exclusive ‘behind the scenes tour’ of the site, which includes access to private collections and historic buildings not accessible to the general public and a private reception to enjoy Tasmanian wines and canapes made from locally sourced ingredients.

Day 8 Disembark in Hobart at 8:00am. A post cruise transfer to city or airport is included.

Please note:
Note on fitness levels: this trip is suitable for passengers of all fitness levels, though reasonable mobility is required to enjoy all it has to offer. Our Xplorer tender permits easy boarding without climbing any stairs. Hikes vary in intensity and where possible we split groups to suit easy and moderate walkers. Guests are welcome to opt out of any excursion and relax onboard – our top deck outdoor lounge is great on a sunny day. The ship has no elevator. As the itinerary covers remote regions, it is not suitable for passengers with serious medical conditions. Note that each itinerary will include a mix of the above attractions, depending on prevailing conditions. The Captain and Expedition Team will make daily itinerary changes to maximise the guest experience and take advantage of opportunities opened up by weather. There will be a daily briefing onboard to advise guests on the upcoming day’s activities. Time of departure and return are guaranteed – the rest is an adventure! The expedition will visit Port Davey and Bathurst Harbour conditions permitting. We always aim to visit these beautiful destinations, but if we are not able to enter, an alternative destination more appropriate to the inclement weather conditions will be chosen by the Captain. Note the summer temperature can still be very cool especially with the wind chill so warm layered clothing is essential.

Overview

Pristine Tasmania

Become enchanted by Tasmania’s breathtaking National Parks; from the perfect circular formation of Wineglass Bay, to the dramatic peaks of pink granite at Freycinet Peninsula, or the remote wildlife haven of Maria Island National Park. Guided by an expert Expedition Team and a Tasmania specialist who knows the area inside out, you’ll embark on easy to moderate short hikes including the famed Cape Hauy Track at Tasman Peninsula and the rugged Fluted Cape on Bruny Island.
If conditions allow, spend two days exploring the untouched Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area at Port Davey and Bathurst Harbour. Normally only accessible by seven-day hike or light aircraft, this region is undoubtedly one of the most pristine and beautiful landscapes on earth.
Coral Expeditions 7-night itinerary allows our guests to experience an authentic expedition voyage. The flexible itinerary enables the Captain to respond to weather conditions, ensuring you enjoy a complete and memorable expedition no matter the conditions. In the spirit of adventure, guests will be advised the day prior where their next adventure lies – perhaps an Oyster Farm, an coastal walk, or even a seal colony basking in the sunlight.

Highlights

Spend two full days exploring Port Davey World Heritage Wilderness area and Bathurst Harbour • Hike the Wineglass Bay Track in Freycinet National Park • Experience the diverse wildlife and history of Maria Island • Be in awe of 300m high sea cliffs at Tasman National Park • Delight in produce-driven food experiences and Tasmania’s cool-climate wines • Spot Fur Seals hauling up to Tasmania’s rocky cliffs • Marvel at the proud shipbuilding and maritime heritage at the Wooden Boat Centre in Franklin

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Ship information

Coral Discoverer

Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition

Length: 63 metres

Passenger Capacity: 72 (in 36 rooms)

Built: 2005 / Refurbished: 2016

Launched in 2005, Coral Discoverer set a new benchmark standard for small ship cruising in Australia. Refurbished in November 2016, she continues to raise the bar to new levels of sophistication in expedition cruising in the Southern Hemisphere.

The 1800-tonne Coral Discoverer is the grand vision of Coral Expeditions, pioneers in expedition and adventure cruises around Australia, Papua New Guinea and South East Asia. Her shallow draught and manoeuvrability allow her to go where larger vessels cannot. Her tender vessel, Xplorer, can seat all 72 passengers for excursions to beaches and rivers. Coral Discoverer is equipped with latest technology active stabilisers to ensure comfortable cruising in open waters and is fitted with modern safety and navigation equipment and wireless internet facilities.

Coral Discoverer was built to the exacting international SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) standards and specifications in Cairns, Australia, with one aim in mind; to create the ultimate small ship cruising experience. Australian flagged, and staffed entirely by an Australian and New Zealand crew, your experience aboard Coral Discoverer will be unique.

After the refurbishment, the Sun Deck has evolved to become a new social space and the hub of on board community living. This area has been converted into an undercover deck area complete with round ‘Explorer Bar’ with bar stools and sun deck with lounges and an area for outdoor exercise equipment.

Guest accommodation has also received a substantial upgrade with the addition of six Bridge Deck Balcony Staterooms providing coveted inside/outside living quarters. Each of our other Stateroom grades has also received a full upgrade with updated bathroom fixtures, soft furnishings and artwork making for an even more comfortable stay on board Coral Discoverer.

The Coral Discoverer offers five different grades of staterooms, ranging from Bridge Deck Balcony Staterooms to Main Deck Staterooms. Bridge Deck Balcony Staterooms are on the top deck and have private balconies opening out from French windows. All rooms are furnished with contemporary flair and feature original artwork, a small private en-suite, individually-controlled air-conditioning, an iPod dock, ample storage and Australian toiletries. All staterooms are serviced daily. Each stateroom is spacious, sized between 15sqm (161 square feet) to 20 sq. (215 square feet) and has either a balcony, feature picture windows or porthole windows. Most staterooms can be configured to either junior king or twin bedding.

Facilities on board

Sun Deck with undercover area, sun lounges and ample seating • Three fully stocked cocktail bars, including brand new round Explorer Bar on Sun Deck • Spacious, modern dining room, recently refurbished • Forward lounge • Reference library • Gift shop • Open bridge • Workout Area • Wireless internet available for laptops, mobile devices or via onboard guest computer • Limited laundry facilities available • SCUBA diving department (selected itineraries)

Contact
Booking
Luxury Amazon River Cruise
Aria Amazon
24.01.2020
31.01.2020
7
Latin America, Aria Amazon Expedition Cruise
Fare from € 8.550
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Travelroute
Day 1

Iquitos - Amazon River

We will meet at Iquitos International Airport then enjoy lunch together at a local restaurant or we will serve a box lunch en route, depending on the flight arrival time. The afternoon continues with an introduction to this historic city and the opportunity to meet an indigenous Amazon community. At 6:00pm we will board the ARIA AMAZON. Settle into your generously proportioned suite as you begin one of life’s greatest adventures. Following a routine safety drill and introduction to our naturalist guides, we gather for innovative Amazonian cuisine created by our Executive Chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino, whose restaurant, Malabar, is the one of Lima’s top ranked dining experiences.

Day 2

Amazon River - Yarapa River - Nauta Caño

Aboard our comfortable skiffs, we set sail from the Amazon River to the Yarapa River. Keep your binoculars ready to spot tropical songbirds, black collared hawks and sloths. We’ll go fishing for Amazonia’s notoriously ferocious piranhas while our naturalist guides share stories of Lake Moringo. As the sun sets, we head off on an evening’s wildlife excursion with extraordinary stargazing on the black waters of Nauta Caño.

Day 3

Marañon River - Casual Jungle Walk - Yanayacu-Pucate River

Rise with the sun for an early morning birdwatching along the Marañon River. After breakfast, we will take a jungle walk on the firm soil forest “Casual,” while looking for flora and fauna which include medicinal trees, insects, and poison dart frogs, and learning more about the different rainforest stratas. Later, swim, canoe or kayak in Yanayacu-Pucate River as we look for legendary pink river dolphins. Focus our hi-tech telescope on the night sky to identify the planets and constellations.

Day 4

Nauta Town - Village Visit - Birthplace of the Amazon

This morning, we will visit the local fresh market with your guides who can identify the day’s catch by the fishermen of Amazonia and the region’s exotic fruits. In the afternoon, we witness one of the great spectacles of the Southern Hemisphere, the birthplace of the Amazon River. Tonight you will meet the new passengers who have signed on for the four-night trip, as we start our journey together along the Marañon River.

Day 5

Yanallpa River - Dorado River

By skiff, we explore the black waters of the Yanallpa River, disembarking to walk deep into the Amazonian rain forest. Later, we board the skiffs again to cruise along the El Dorado River for a dusk excursion in search of exotic nocturnal wildlife.

Day 6

Pacaya River - Ucayali River - Tapiche River

The rewards of our early start today are plentiful, including a breakfast picnic accompanied by jungle symphony and fishing along the black waters of the Pacaya River. After lunch, we venture out by skiffs on the Ucayali River alongside the banana boats transporting their jungle products to the port of Requena, keeping an eye out for pink river dolphins.

Day 7

Clavero or Yarapa River - Amazon River

Choose to go jungle walking, canoeing, kayaking or swimming on the black water Yarapa or Clavero River in the morning. Visit a remote Amazonia village in the afternoon. This evening before dinner, we will gather to introduce you to some of the crewmembers whom you may not have met, working "behind the scenes" to ensure your countless exceptional experiences aboard the ARIA AMAZON.

Day 8

Arrival in Iquitos - Manatee Rescue Center - Transfer to the Airport

At the Bellavista Nanay morning market along the Nanay River, sample exotic snacks from the Peruvian Amazon like ‘Suri’, Amazon caterpillars that are considered especially appetizing. Return to the ARIA for breakfast and to pack up. Before saying goodbye, we will make one last truly memorable stop at the Manatee Rescue Center, a very special kind of animal orphanage for Amazonian manatees. We will also visit San Juan craft market on route to the airport. Lunch or box lunch will be provided, depending on the exact departure flight time, which may vary. Other local activities may be included as well, according to the recommended flight schedule.

Please Note: this itinerary is based on the High Water Season (December - May), it varies slightly for the Low Water Season (June – November).

Overview

Aria Amazon Expedition Cruise

We highly recommend our 7-night Amazon River Expedition Cruise on the Aria Amazon where you may experience our most luxurious and comprehensive Amazon journey among the Amazon River’s three powerful tributaries: the Marañon, the Ucayali, and the Puinahua as well as several hidden black water lakes.
Enjoy a tour by skiff of the Yacapana Isles, the “Isles of the Iguana”. Meet the gray and pink freshwater dolphins of the Yarapa River. Visit Madgalena Village and her giant water lilies and meet the Cocama Indians of Puerto Prado. Travel down the Ucayali River spotting monkeys and learn about the Amazon River headwaters. Probe deep within the Nauta Caño within Pacaya-Samiria Reserve, known as the mirrored forest, fish for piranha in Charo Lake and learn about sustainable resource management projects in Amazonia.

• Low Water Season (June through November) vs. High Water Season (December through May)

If seeing glorious Amazon rainforest at its lushest and getting up close to lots of birds and mammals (and enjoying slightly cooler temperatures) sounds most attractive, then December to May might be your best choice.
If jungle hikes and spotting exotic migratory birds perched on trees between flights across Amazonia appeals most to you, while still having the chance to see capuchin monkeys, kinkajou, and other mammals, and going on great fishing expeditions, you might be happier choosing the warmer, low water season.

River cruises on the Amazon and Mekong with Aqua Expeditions can be made in 4, 5 or 8 days. Aqua Blu cruises in Indonesia can be made in 8 or 13 days.

Highlights

See the Amazon River’s rare pink dolphins • Venture deep into the Amazon rainforest among its extraordinary array of mammals and birds • Explore within the five million pristine acres of Pacaya Samiria Reserve, a protected wildlife area teeming with lifelong mating pairs of blue-and-yellow macaw, flocks of snowy egrets, laughing falcons and Amazon kingfishers in the air, squirrel monkeys frolicking in the trees and pink dolphins poking their dorsal fins above the river water while colossal Victoria Regia water lilies float along the surface • Interact with local people in their villages, living largely as they have for centuries

Please Note: More Aria Amazon Expedition Cruises are available, not all of them are listed online. Please contact us for more details.

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Ship information

Aria Amazon

Vessel Type: Luxury River Expedition

Length: 45 meters
Passenger Capacity: 32

Crew Capacity: 27

Built/refurbished: 2010/2015

In 2015, the Aria Amazon, which first set sail in 2011, was completely refreshed with new upgrades from bed linens to state of the art lighting. The 45 meter (147 foot) long Aria was designed by the innovative Peruvian architect Jordi Puig. Extremely generous dining and lounging areas include an outdoor river facing Jacuzzi. Floor to ceiling windows face the Amazon River in the ship’s 16 Design Suites, each measuring 23 square meters (250 square feet). Four suites can interconnect for families. Upgrades to the spa include new decor for enhanced relaxation. This striking black hulled ship accommodates a maximum of 32 guests plus 27 crew including a paramedic and four English-speaking naturalist guides. Aqua Expeditions highly experienced river pilots and the most rigorous cruise ship standards ensure smooth travel and safety on the waters of the Peruvian Amazon.
Accommodations and Cabins: 16 suites (8 Design Suites measuring 23.2 square meters /250 square feet on the first deck and 8 Design Suites measuring 23.2 square meters / 250 square feet on the second deck). All outside-facing with floor to ceiling panoramic windows. All air conditioned with en suite sitting areas. Four interconnecting suites for families.
Unique Cabin Features and Amenities: Amazon river facing panoramic windows; air conditioning; twin beds that convert to a California king-sized bed; en suite sitting area, bathroom with shower, toilet, sink, cabinet, hairdryer, hot water around the clock and a basket of toiletries; internal communications system.
Common Living and Social Areas: Indoor Bar; Lounge; Dining Room; Outside Lounge; Outdoor Jacuzzi; Exercise Room; Observation Deck; Boutique.

Contact
Booking
Luxury Expedition
Silver Galapagos
25.01.2020
01.02.2020
7
Pacific and Oceania, Latin America, North Central Galápagos
Fare from € 7,150
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Travelroute
Day 1

Baltra & Isla Daphne Grande

Baltra Island, also known as South Seymour, is the gateway through which most people enter and depart the Galapagos Island. Upon arrival and once through immigrations procedures, visitors are transferred directly to a nearby dock to join the ship by Zodiac. The runway was first constructed here during World War II when the island was used as a US Army Air Base. Located near the geographic center of the Galapagos, the island itself is small, flat and arid. Daphne Major is a volcanic tuff crater island, located to the north of Santa Cruz Island not far from Baltra International Airport. Circumnavigating the island by ship will reveal the rocky outcropping from all angles as it rises approximately 120 meters (390 feet) above sea level. Usually only scientists are allowed to land on Daphne, so it will be a special event to come in close with the ship and watch for Nazca and Blue-footed Boobies, frigatebirds, Red-billed Tropicbirds, Brown Noddies, Brown Pelicans, and Swallow-tailed Gulls riding the sea breezes swirling around this rugged landmass.

Day 2

Bahia Darwin (Genovesa) & El Barranco (Genovesa)

At Genovesa Island the ship tucks into Darwin Bay, an ancient volcanic crater now flooded by the sea. Zodiacs land on a picturesque sandy beach where Galapagos sea lions often rest on the fine, white sand. Explorations along the shore may reveal marine iguanas looking like prehistoric dinosaurs in miniature. By heading inland a short distance visitors could encounter seabirds of all shapes and sizes nesting in the vegetation. Scores of immature Red-footed Boobies perch on branches within an arm’s reach of the path. From Darwin Bay on Genovesa Island explorers can access an area known as El Barranco or the “Prince Philip’s Steps”. A brief scramble up the stone steps brings you to the plateau of the island. From here, on flat ground, a small trail wanders past Red-footed Boobies, perching frigate birds, Galapagos Mockingbirds, Nazca Boobies, and Galapagos finches. The highlight however, is arriving on the windward side of the island to see hundreds of Wedge-Rumped Storm Petrels flying around in a frenzy of activity above the lava field where they nest.

Day 3

Seymour Norte & Santiago (Bahia Sullivan)

The landing at North Seymour Island is onto black lava rock. After a short climb, visitors arrive on the island’s flat plateau where a number of sea lions nurse pups and frigatebirds nest. The island is dry, and so the predominant tree is the prickly pear cactus favored by the yellow Conolophus land iguanas that live here in number. The undulating terrain is littered with red-brown volcanic boulders and large male Magnificent Frigatebirds can be seen inflating their vivid red gular sacs in hopes of impressing females flying overhead. The lava fields of Sullivan Bay on Santiago Island will inevitably remind visitors of the surface of the moon. As brilliant red Sally Lightfoot crabs scuttle along the black volcanic shores, learn about the formation of the islands through geological forces from your guides. The lava flows here are just over one hundred years old and date back to 1897. The lava took on a rope-like appearance and geologists have adopted a Hawaiian word, pahoehoe, as the technical name for this kind of volcanic rock.

Day 4

Rabida & Santa Cruz (El Eden)

Rabida Island has received accolades for being one of the most exotic spots on earth and while it is small in size, the island is dramatic in scale. Rugged red cliffs rise from the sea and Zodiacs land onto a beach of dark red sand colored by iron ore. Ghost crabs and Galapagos sea lion pups often rest on the russet sands. Further inland, the rusty sand gives way to shrubby coastal vegetation dominated by prickly-pear cactus. Common Cactus Finches feed on the yellow flowers while Darwin finches and lava lizards skitter across the path in search of food. Just off Santa Cruz, Eden Islet offers up a thick coastal mangrove forest growing on black volcanic boulders peppered with tall prickly pear cactus. Eden is a small, eroded tuff cone from an ancient volcano, and is an excellent example of the unique geology of the Galápagos. The shallow waters around the island are ideal for spotting Pacific green sea turtles, reef sharks, eagle rays, sea lions, marine iguanas and Sally Lightfoot crabs.

Day 5

San Cristobal (Galapaguera) & Punta Pitt (San Cristobal)

Giant tortoises are emblematic of the Galapagos Islands. To experience these ancient animals firsthand, the Silver Galapagos anchors off San Cristobal Island and Zodiacs take all ashore to the pretty little town of Puerto Baquerizo Moreno. From here we set out by bus for the Galapaguera Cerro Colorado Tortoise Reserve in the highlands of the island. The trails of the reserve lead to encounters with large, lumbering adult tortoises as well as small juveniles that could fit in the palm of a person’s hand. On the northern shore of San Cristobal Island is a peninsula known as Punta Pitt. The point is made up of two coalesced volcanoes and is much younger than the rest of the island. Some of the lava flows are only a few centuries old. From a sandy beach Zodiac landing leads a long walk following a twisting red gravel path that runs through black basalt lava rocks, and between craggy peaks. The vegetation along the way is low and scrubby, and attractive blue-gray lichen grows on the rocks.

Day 6

Gardner Bay & Punta Suárez (Espanola Island)

Isla Champion is a small islet off Floreana Island’s northeast coast. To cruise by it reveals a bare, rocky island without much allure, but to enter the infinitely blue waters around this small landmass is to discover a spectacular underwater realm. The visibility is generally impressive and thanks to this water clarity snorkelers often spot reef sharks patrolling the reef wall, cruising Pacific green turtles, and playful Galapagos sea lions. Encounters in the blue with thousands of small silver minnows, large tuna fish, or oceanic sunfish are not unheard of either. Punta Suárez lies at the western point of Española, the oldest island in the Galápagos. Sheer cliffs provide superb thermals for seabirds and you may spot Swallow-tailed Gulls, Nazca Boobies and Blue-footed Boobies on the breeze. The largest seabird to nest in the Galapagos Islands is the Waved Albatross. These ocean wanderers can be seen seasonally here from April through December, when pairs reunite on Española, going through an elaborate pair-bonding display. Mockingbirds, doves, and occasional Galápagos Hawks can also be seen on the point, along with sea lions and colorful marine iguanas.

Day 7

Estacion Darwin & Puerto Ayora (Santa Cruz) & Plazas Sur

Silver Galapagos will anchor in front of Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz, where the prestigious Charles Darwin Research Station is located. The station also houses the Fausto Llerena Breeding Center for giant tortoises and land iguanas where guides interpret the center’s captive breeding and reintroduction programs. In addition to these star species, throughout the station there are huge prickly pear cactus trees being fed upon by the pretty Galapagos Cactus Finch. To round out the stay in Puerto Ayora, enjoy free time in town where local artists have created charming art galleries and corner cafés. South Plaza is a serene island located close to the eastern coast of Santa Cruz. This small island is sprinkled with giant prickly pear cactus, carpeted with a reddish mat of ground-cover succulents, and is home to a large nesting colony of Swallow-tailed Gulls, along with marine iguanas and Galápagos sea lions. Seabirds crowd the island’s shores including Blue-footed Boobies, Nazca Boobies, Brown Pelicans, and frigatebirds. However, the birds, seals and marine iguanas share the spotlight with brilliant yellow land iguanas of the island.

Day 8

San Cristobal

Disembarkation. Like so many of the islands in the Galapagos, San Cristobal is formed by dormant volcanoes. It lies to the east of the archipelago and is one of the oldest islands in the group. Approximately 6,000 people live on the island, making their living from tourism, fishing, in government offices, or off the rich volcanic soils with some limited farming existing in the highlands. Puerto Baquerizo Moreno on the southwestern tip of the island is the capital city of the Galapagos Islands. A statue of Charles Darwin graces the harbor, marking one of the first places he likely stepped ashore in the 1830s.
Please Note: expedition highlights and wildlife listed here are possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed. Your Expedition Leader and Captain will work together to ensure opportunities for adventure and exploration are the best possible, taking into account the prevailing weather, wildlife activity and conditions. Expedition Team members scheduled for this voyage are subject to change or cancellation.

Ship information

North Central Galápagos

Enjoy the north-central region of Galapagos on this 7-day cruise. Feel the thrill of seeing wildlife that is completely unafraid: from lava lizards to giant tortoises. Gaze upon Pinnacle Rock as Darwin once did, take a Zodiac® boat along the picturesque coast, discover natural lava tunnels and snorkel in a stunning underwater world.
Please note: your voyage prices include flights between Ecuador and the Galápagos Islands, Transfers, pre cruise Hotel in Quito (2 nights), National Park fees
Highlights

Visit “Bird Island” home to over 30 bird species • Climb Prince Philip’s Steps through a thriving seabird colony • Observe sea lion families and the famed giant tortoises • Search for the Galápagos Short-Eared Owl • Admire the antics of Red-footed and Blue-footed Boobies • Find corals and bones on raised North Seymour Island • Explore natural underground lava tunnels and hike across lava flows • Hike up the sides of an extinct volcano • See spectacular water-spouting “blowers” • Swim and snorkel in tranquil, clear waters • Photograph colourful marine iguanas • Marvel at the fearless behaviour of wildlife • Cruise by Zodiac along scenic coastlines • Learn about conservation efforts at the Fausto Llerena Breeding Center

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Ship information

Silver Galapagos

Vessel Type: Luxury Small Ship
Length: 88 metres
Passenger Capacity: 100
Crew: 75
Built/Refurbished: 2012 / 2017

The newest addition to Silversea's fleet of ultra-luxury ships: the 100-guest Silver Galapagos. With sleek lines and a proven skill for navigating the waterways throughout the Galápagos Islands, she is naturally suited for in-depth explorations of this spectacular region. She offers all the intimate conviviality and elegant sophistication that has made Silversea the preferred choice for today's discerning travellers.

Contact
Booking
Luxury Explorer Cruise
Le Boréal
27.01.2020
06.02.2020
10
Antarctica, Latin America, Emblematic Antarctica
Fare from € 10,550
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Travelroute
Day 1

Ushuaia

Capital of Argentina's Tierra del Fuego province, Ushuaia lies in a bay opening into the Beagle Channel at the country's southernmost tip. Its colourful houses are framed against towering mountains, snow-capped in winter and summer alike. Downtown, the End of the World Museum showcases Tierra del Fuego's natural and indigenous history. A ride on the heritage railway is an exciting excursion into the Tierra del Fuego National Park, while a cruise on Ushuaia Bay is the perfect way to spot sea lions and Magellanic penguins.

Days 2 & 3

Drake Passage

Use your days spent in the Drake Passage to familiarise yourself with your ship and deepen your knowledge of the Antarctic. The Expedition Leader will first present the IAATO rules of conduct that must be observed during landings in the region and will explain everything you need to know about the Zodiac® outings. Lectures about the history and wildlife of the Antarctic will be an opportunity for you to learn more about this magical region, where every cruise is a unique experience. From the ship’s bridge, you will experience exceptional sailing moments before joining the naturalist-guides on your ship’s exterior decks to look out for albatrosses, cape petrels, and other seabirds flying over the Drake Passage.

Days 4 - 8

Antarctic Peninsula

Succumb to the magic of a place unlike any other. To this day, the mythical Antarctic Peninsula still holds real fascination and promises its visitors unforgettable moments. Throughout your adventure in this icy realm, you will find yourself in the heart of a spectacular decor in subtle shades of blue and white, surrounded by exceptional wildlife. Penguins, humpback whales, seals and giant petrels are at home here, as are elephant seals, fur seals, Antarctic minke whales, and orcas. Depending on which sites you will be lucky enough to visit, you may get the chance to observe them and share with them the beauty of these extreme parts. Each day, based on ice conditions, the Captain and the Expedition Leader will suggest Zodiac® outings or landings to discover the infinite riches of the Antarctic Peninsula. Glaciers, ice floe, tabletop icebergs, mountain peaks that plunge straight into the sea, volcanic beaches, research stations, enchanting bays, and vestiges of the whaling industry: these are the faces of the Antarctic that will likely reveal themselves to you, in a hushed and surreal atmosphere. You will sail in the wake of Jean-Baptiste Charcot, Adrien de Gerlache and Sir Ernest Shackleton, great Antarctic explorers who, from the 19th century, set out to conquer these remote and uninhabited lands.

Days 9 & 10

Drake Passage

Day 11

Ushuaia

Disembarkation.
Please Note:
We are privileged guests in these extreme lands where we are at the mercy of weather and ice conditions. Landings on certain sites and the observation of certain wildlife cannot be guaranteed. They vary from day to day, making each cruise a unique experience. The Captain and the Expedition Leader will make every effort to ensure that your experience is as rich as possible, while complying with the safety rules and instructions imposed by the IAATO.

Overview

Emblematic Antarctica

“The Antarctic exerts the powerful attraction of the inaccessible which leads Man to become passionately engaged. One is never the same after returning from a long stay on the white continent.” Jean-Louis Etienne
For centuries the Antarctic remained like a ghost on the map of the world, yet today the «White Continent» exerts a powerful fascination. Explored by man since only 1820, this vast icy continent offers spectacular mountain scenery, the world’s biggest icebergs and an extraordinary array of wildlife: fur seals, penguins, albatrosses, sea elephants, orcas and whales in large numbers live side by side in this grandiose landscape. Who has not dreamed of savouring that white stillness, an extraordinary spell-binding atmosphere of total serenity unequalled anywhere else on Earth. On the horizon, blocks of ice collapse into the sea forming vast icebergs of all shapes and sizes, eroded by the wind and the waves.

Highlights

Enjoy spectacular scenery & extraordinary array of wildlife of Antarctica Travel between the majestic icebergs on board luxurious yachts that are built on an intimate, human scale. French crew, expertise, attentive service, gastronomy: set sail in a five-star environment and enjoy a travel experience that is simultaneously authentic and sophisticated

Please Note: your voyage rates include Flight Buenos Aires / Ushuaia + visit or time at leisure + transfers + flight Ushuaia / Buenos Aires

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Ship information

Le Boréal

Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition / Cruise Ship
Length: 142 meters
Passenger Capacity: 264 (in twin cabins, 200 in Antarctica)
Built: 2011

A superb mega-yacht with 132 cabins, she is the fruit of the expertise of the Italian Fincantieri shipyard and French sophistication, as interpreted by designer Jean-Philippe Nuel. Le Boreal remains faithful to our philosophy - to create a unique atmosphere, a subtle blend of luxury, intimacy and well-being.
Superior materials, discreet elegance and a tasteful décor combined with exterior and interior lines to reflect a nautical mood, subtly revisited. On board, soothing neutral tones are enlivened by splashes of red, our signature theme linking tradition and innovation to create personal touches in the spirit of a “private yacht”.
Cuisine
Loyal to the great French tradition, the haute cuisine on board is worthy of the finest restaurants, where discreet, attentive service is the hallmark.
Our two restaurants welcome you for breakfasts, lunch and dinner. The Gastronomic Restaurant, with a capacity of 268 persons, is situated on Le Liberte Deck and serves you French and international cuisine accompagnied by fine wine. On the Grill Restaurant, you will have the opportuniny to eat outside and enjoy buffet lunch and themed dinner.
Life On Board
Whether you want to join other guests in the theatre or games area (Wii™ consoles, etc), or relax on your own in a quiet corner of the library, Le Boreal has been designed to meet the needs of every guest.
Everything has been done to preserve the independence of each guest to suit their personal tastes: lounges for lectures and shows, a spa in partnership with Carita™, but also more intimate spaces such as the library and internet corner. Comfortable cabins, nearly all with private balcony, are available forfamilies either as triples or as communicating cabins. There is also a games area with Wii™ consoles, children’s menus, and a baby-sitting ser vice.Just as if you were on a private yacht, your time is your own to do as you please.
Fitted with the latest equipment (Kinesis Wall, running machine) and in partnership with the famous Carita™ brand, the Beauty Centre on Le Boreal welcomes you for some unforgettable moments of relaxation and pampering (beauty treatments, hairdresser, hammam, balneotherapy).

Contact
Booking
Luxury Explorer Cruise
Le Bougainville
27.01.2020
04.02.2020
8
Africa, Asia, The Essential Seychelles
Fare from € 4,240
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Travelroute
Day 1

Victoria, Mahé

Discover Mahé, the main island of the Seychelles and also the largest of the archipelago, home to the capital, Victoria. Mahé has almost 70 beaches of fine sand, framed by the emblematic granite rocks, and whose crystal clear waters are renowned for their rich underwater life. The island is also famous for its splendid mountain panoramas accessible on hikes, such as the Morne Seychellois, which is 905 metres high and overlooks the Indian Ocean. Mahé is also an island full of history where fine colonial properties rub shoulders with Creole houses - and don’t forget the marvellous Botanical Gardens in Victoria.

Day 2

Sainte Anne Marine National Park

Day 3

Saint Joseph Atoll

Day 4

Curieuse Island

Situated off the coast of Praslin, Curieuse has a distinguishing feature: its red earth. Discovered in 1768 by the French explorer Marc-Joseph Marion du Fresne, it was ravaged by a fire in 1771 and then home to a leper colony of which a few vestiges still remain. Declared a national marine park in 1979, it is home to many underwater species, which can be discovered while scuba diving or snorkelling in the idyllic waters of the Indian Ocean. But above all, Curieuse is renowned for the hundreds of Aldabra giant tortoises that live there. It is highly likely that you will get the chance to meet these fascinating reptiles. Along with Praslin, it is also the only island on which the sea coconut grows wild.

Day 5

Aride Island

Aride is an island in the Seychelles situated a few kilometres north-west of Praslin. Listed as a nature reserve, this pearl of the Indian Ocean will seduce you with the beauty of its landscapes of wild cliffs and fine-sand beaches. Protected from human impact and sometimes called “bird capital”, it is home to several endemic plants as well as exceptional wildlife. Most notably, it is the refuge of an impressive number of seabirds (Seychelles magpie-robins, terns, noddies, and more), and reptiles, such as Wright’s skinks, which can be found in the island’s wooded areas. Sea turtles can also be observed on the island’s beaches, and boxfish can be admired while scuba diving in the surrounding waters.

Day 6

Grande Sœur

Day 7

Praslin Island

Situated some forty kilometres away from Victoria, Praslin is the second largest island in the Seychelles. Its idyllic beaches where granite rocks nestle in immaculate sand correspond perfectly to how we imagine the Seychelles to be. They invite visitors to dive into the turquoise waters, which are ideal for snorkelling. In the centre of the island, hidden in the heart of a stunning tropical rainforest, lies the Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In this veritable plant sanctuary, several endemic species of palm trees can be observed, as well as the famous sea coconut, which can weigh up to 20 kg and is sometimes called “coco fesse” because its shape calls to mind a pair of buttocks.

Day 8

La Digue Island

A sprinkling of islands scattered in the Indian Ocean, the Seychelles exude calm and beauty against a backdrop of leafy coconut trees, white sand and crystal-clear water. In addition to the tranquility of its green lagoons and its idyllic beaches, this remote paradise also boasts an exceptional fauna and flora. In the many parks and nature reserves, come and observe colourful birds, giant turtles and the numerous marine species living in the turquoise waters. Before reaching the archipelago’s capital, Mahe, your ship will introduce you to La Digue. Time stands still here on this small stretch of land protected from all motorised traffic, where the only mode of transport is the bicycle or the oxcart.

Day 9

Victoria, Mahé

Disembarkation

Overview

The Essential Seychelles

On this brand-new itinerary, PONANT invites you to discover the must-see jewels of the Seychelles. On Mahé, you will board Le Bougainville for a 9-day expedition cruise to the heart of this archipelago’s Inner Islands for a glimpse of paradise.
The first stop on your cruise: Sainte Anne Marine National Park, whose coral reefs are home to stunning species, guaranteeing unforgettable snorkelling.
On Curieuse Island, reputed for its red earth and for the Aldabra giant tortoises that have taken up residence there, take an excursion to the heart of the mangrove. You will then discover Aride, an unspoiled delight of the Indian Ocean, home to thousands of birds including some endemic species.
In Praslin, don’t miss the chance to visit the Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve. There you will find sea coconuts, gigantic endemic fruits with a very evocative shape, nicknamed the “love nut”.
Palm trees, granite rock, white sand and crystal-clear water then await you on Grande Sœur and La Digue. The beaches on these two stunning islands are each more beautiful than the next, guaranteeing moments of relaxation that will live up to your fantasies of the Seychelles.
The encounters with the wildlife described above illustrate possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed.
Highlights
Landing in Zodiac®inflatables with a team of experienced naturalist guides • UNESCO site: the Vallée de Mai nature reserve in Praslin. • Discover 8 islands in the Seychelles on a single cruise • The Aride nature reserve, a treasure of the Seychelles with some 73 hectares of colourful vegetation and more than one million birds • The bare red earth of Curieuse, a granite island in the Seychelles • Anse Source d’Argent, the most famous beach of La Digue, surrounded by large blocks of granite and edged with coconut palms • Possibility of observing tortoises on Saint Joseph and Curieuse • Encounters with the locals • Possibility of diving (PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or equivalent) with an experienced instructor on board and of snorkelling with your expedition team

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Ship information

Le Bougainville

Featuring innovative and environmentally-friendly equipment, elegantly designed staterooms, spacious suites with large windows, and lounge areas that open onto the outside, this new limited-capacity yacht boasting just 92 staterooms and suites will offer you a truly unique cruising experience.

As the first ship in a new series that remains true to the Ponant's spirit, Le Bougainville will embody the unique atmosphere that is the cruise line’s hallmark: a subtle blend of refinement, intimacy and comfort.

Aboard this ship that flies the French flag, you will experience the incomparable pleasure of an intimate cruise, with the possibility of exploring an ever-increasing range of destinations in an ethnic-chic ambiance with luxury service.

Experience a luxurious setting where the accent is on authenticity and passion for travel.

Contact
Booking
Luxury Expedition
Silver Cloud
29.01.2020
08.02.2020
10
Antarctica, Latin America, Classic Antarctica
Fare from € 17,190
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Travelroute
Day 1

Ushuaia, Argentina

Departing from Buenos Aires, fly to Ushuaia and transfer to the port. Embark Silver Cloud, settle in and attend a mandatory safety drill before leaving port. During the afternoon you will be introduced to some of the important crew members and your Expedition Team. At sail-away bid farewell to Tierra del Fuego, the ‘Land at the End of the World’.

Day 2

Drake Passage

The Drake Passage has a notorious reputation for its turbulent seas due to the westerly winds and the funnelling effect of the passage’s seafloor. While crossing the Drake Passage we will encounter the Antarctic Convergence, a natural boundary between cold polar water flowing northward and warmer water moving southward. The Antarctic Convergence is not a fixed line but moving, depending on the season. Where these two currents meet, nutrients are pushed to the surface, often attracting a multitude of seabirds and whales. Spend some time on deck watching the Black-browed Albatross, Sooty Shearwaters and White-chinned Petrels gliding in the air currents of Silver Cloud’s wake. As we set sail on our initial transit, familiarise yourself with the elegant Silver Cloud and the Expedition Team members.Attend wildlife, geography and history discussions hosted by our expert naturalists and guest lecturers that will prepare you for the exciting adventures that lie ahead.

Day 3

Drake Passage

Day 4

Antarctic Peninsula

While sailing to Antarctica in early December the winter pack ice is breaking up and melting. Every turn can reveal a new and breath-taking adventure. As the pack ice becomes thicker, it becomes apparent to everyone that we are moving closer into Antarctica’s vast white wilderness. Remote and otherworldly, Antarctica is irresistible for its spectacular iceberg sculptures, calving glaciers, and for the possibility of close encounters with marine mammals. Watch for seals sunbathing on slow-moving ice floes and for humpback, Minke, and orca whales to surface from below the frigid waters. Each day we will attempt Zodiac departures, and, if conditions permit, we will cruise amidst colourful icebergs or step ashore to visit a variety of penguin rookeries and perhaps scientific research stations on complimentary excursions led by our team of natural history experts. A flexible itinerary allows us to take advantage of favourable sea and weather conditions. In the true spirit of expedition cruising, each day the Expedition Leader and Captain will determine our best course depending on weather, ice conditions and wildlife we may encounter. Here are some of the places we may visit: Antarctic Sound Named after Nordenskjöld’s ship, this 30 miles long stretch of water at the north end of the Antarctic Peninsula offers some of the best tabular iceberg observations. Brown Bluff, Tabarin Peninsula (a 2,200-foot bluff on mainland Antarctica) Brown Bluff is an ice-capped, 745-metre-high, flat-topped mountain with a prominent cliff of reddish-brown volcanic rock. Adelie and Gentoo Penguins, Kelp Gulls, and Cape Petrels use this as a breeding area. Birds such as the all-white Snow Petrel and skuas may be seen from a distance. As you explore the area, a Weddell seal may be seen basking in the sunlight. Wait long enough and you will see the Adelie Penguins standing along the shore finally making their way into the surf. Cuverville Island, Errera Channel The island was discovered by Gerlache’s Belgian Antarctic expedition of 1897–99, and was named for a vice admiral in the French navy. Large bare rock areas provide nesting sites for Gentoo Penguins. Snow Petrels and Cape Petrels also may be seen whilst Wilson’s Storm Petrels nest in the higher scree of the island. If conditions permit, a hike towards the top of the island will permit stunning views of the surrounding mountains and channels. During Zodiac tours around the many icebergs, hauled-out Weddell seals may be seen. Paradise Bay (Antarctic Peninsula) The bay is well named for its spectacular scenery of mountains, glaciers and icebergs. From the ship, observe Argentina’s “Base Almirante Brown”, and the Chilean station “Gonzalez Videla”, two of many Antarctic research stations that are manned periodically. Here, you can actually set foot on mainland Antarctica. View the wildlife from sea level while cruising in your Zodiac with one of our experienced Expedition Team members. Neko Harbor (Antarctic Peninsula) The site is named after a whale factory ship, which often used this bay –and Neko Harbor still today offers good chances to see whales. A landing will provide an opportunity to see Gentoo Penguin rookeries and quite possibly Weddell seals and crabeater seals hauled out on the cobble beach. A hike to a lookout point will be a good exercise and will be rewarded with panoramic views of the glacier, Andvord Bay and the Gerlache Strait. Port Foster, Whalers Bay (Deception Island) Deception Island is home to a collapsed volcano and an excellent example of a caldera where it is believed that the volcano’s summit collapsed with one section sinking far enough to allow the sea to flood the interior. We plan to sail inside this breached wall through a narrow entrance called Neptune’s Bellows. Our resident geologist will take the opportunity to explain the unique volcanic features of the area while our naturalists might introduce you to the whaling history of Deception Island. Still visible on the island are the boilers used to make whale oil in the early 1900s. Port Lockroy, Goudier Island The British built a listening station here during WWII, which was then used as a research station in the 1950s and since 1996 as a museum and gift shop. Snowy Sheathbills and Gentoo Penguins roam outside the museum. Have a look to see how science was done in Antarctica more than 50 years ago. A post-office and mailbox are located inside the former station.

Day 5

Antarctic Peninsula

Day 6

Antarctic Peninsula

Day 7

Antarctic Peninsula

Day 8

Antarctic Peninsula

Day 9

Drake Passage return

Navigating our return through the Drake Passage, we will watch for seabirds and wildlife we may have missed on the first leg. Take this opportunity to attend additional presentations offered by the Expedition Team lecturers and to edit photos. The Captain will invite you and your new friends to the Farewell Cocktail, as we travel towards Ushuaia.

Day 10

Drake Passage return

Day 11

Ushuaia, Argentina

After breakfast, disembark Silver Cloud and transfer to Ushuaia International Airport for your return flight to Buenos Aires.

Please Note: expedition highlights and wildlife listed here are possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed. Your Expedition Leader and Captain will work together to ensure opportunities for adventure and exploration are the best possible, taking into account the prevailing weather, wildlife activity and ice conditions. Expedition Team members scheduled for this voyage are subject to change or cancellation.

Overview

Classic Antarctica

Traversing Drake’s eponymous passage is a must for any explorer. With diverse seabirds attracted to the area, have your binoculars and cameras ready and as you sail closer to the Antarctic Peninsula, look for seals basking on ice floes, Macaroni penguin, and the prodigious Orca whale. Begin and end your expedition at the “world’s end”, Ushuaia.
INCLUDED IN THE CRUISE FARE: one night pre cruise hotel, transfers (between airport/hotel and ship), charter flight to/ from Ushuaia.

Highlights

Marvel at spectacular iceberg sculptures and calving glaciers • Set foot on the continent and mainland of Antarctica • Encounter Gentoo, Chinstrap and Adelie Penguins • Spot elephant seals, Weddell seals, leopard seals and crabeater seals • Watch for whales – humpback, Minke, orca, pilot, and beaked whales • Identify Snowy Sheathbill, Antarctic Cormorant, Kelp Gull, Antarctic Tern, Cape Petrels, Wandering Albatrosses, Southern Fulmars, Blue-eyed Shags, Southern Giant Petrels, skuas, Black-browed Albatrosses, Wilson’s Storm Petrels, and other seabirds

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Ship information

Silver Cloud

Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition

Length: 157 m.

Passenger Capacity: 254

Crew Capacity: 212

Built: 1994 Refurbished & Rebranded: 2017

After extensive refurbishment, Silver Cloud will be the most spacious and comfortable ice class vessel in expedition cruising. Her large suites, her destination itineraries and her unparalleled service make her truly special. Her five dining options will tantalise your taste buds and as 80% of her suites include a veranda, watching a breaching whale or a few cavorting penguins has never been so personal. Broad sweeping decks with multiple open spaces and a swimming pool complete what is surely the most distinctive expedition ship sailing today.

A limited number of guests, particularly with just 200 in polar waters, mean that Silver Cloud has the highest space to guest and crew ratios in expedition cruising. With her 18 zodiacs, possibilities are almost limitless with ship-wide simultaneous explorations. Finally, a team of 19 passionate and dedicated experts are always at hand to ensure your voyage is enhanced every step of the way.

Contact
Booking
Luxury Expedition
Coral Discoverer
29.01.2020
05.02.2020
7
Australia and NZ, Pristine Tasmania
Fare from € 3.650
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Travelroute
Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Hobart - Woodbridge & Huon River

Board at Hobart’s Princes Wharf at 4:00pm for 5:00pm departure. Meet and mingle with fellow guests at the Captain’s Welcome Drinks.

Learn about the process of sheep cheese-making at the family-run Grandvewe Cheeses, and at the cellar door enjoy a taste of their ‘ewenique’ sheep’s whey vodka. Visit either the Woodbridge Marine Discovery Centre or Pepperberries Garden Café and Art Farm for a walk through lavender fields, enjoying their fine collection of sculptures. Cruise the Huon River and visit the township of Franklin and the Wooden Boat Centre.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Port Davey & Bathurst Harbour

A marine reserve, and part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area, Port Davey is Tasmania untouched. If conditions allow, guests will spend one to two full days exploring this pristine wilderness, and enjoy the unforgettable experience of kayaking in Bathurst Harbour. Otherwise accessible only via a seven-day hike or charter flight, Port Davey feels like an endless uncharted wilderness, full of sheltered bays filled with endemic marine life. In Port Davey, you’ll disembark to explore the ‘Narrows’ aboard our tender and take a guided hike of Balmoral Hill or the Mount Beattie Track. Take in the surrounds of Melaleuca and the Needwonnee Walk, named after the tribe whose homelands extended throughout this area.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Bruny Island & Adventure Bay

Experience the rugged beauty of the Fluted Cape as you walk along the sheer coastal cliffs or cruise in our Xplorer vessel for a closer look around Penguin Island under the spectacular dolerite formations. Learn about the rich maritime history of Adventure Bay as you meander past the ruins of old whaling stations under the shade She Oaks on the way to Grassy Point.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Freycinet National Park & Wineglass Bay

The spectacular peninsula of Freycinet is crafted from pink granite peaks – the Hazard mountains – surrounded by azure bays, and backed by dry eucalypt forest. At Freycinet National Park, guests can join an optional guided hike (approx. two hours) to the Wineglass Bay beach via the lookout or Isthmus Track, consistently voted one of the most breathtaking beaches in the world. Witness numerous fur seals lounging on the rocks on the Ile des Phoques, a small rocky island between Freycinet Peninsula and Maria Island.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Maria Island National Park

Walk amongst the historic ruins, secluded bays and rugged cliffs of Maria Island National Park, and you can expect to meet local endemic wildlife such as Forester Kangaroos, Bennetts Wallabies and Wombats. Visit World Heritage-listed Darlington; take in the dramatic Painted and Fossil Cliffs, walk to the convict ruins of Point Lesueur at Long Point.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Tasman National Park

Feel small as you stand beside the 300 metre sea cliffs and monumental rock formations of Tasman National Park. See sea stacks – tall dolerite formations – stand tall, and view the Tasman Arch, The Candlestick and Cathedral from a perfect positions at sea. An area of huge natural diversity, it is possible guests may come across Australian Fur Seals “hauling out” on the rocky shore at Tasman Island, as well as dolphins and albatross which are often sighted in this region.

Day 1 - 7 Expedition Highlights:

Port Arthur Historic Site - Hobart

A unique experience awaits at the UNESCO World Heritage listed Port Arthur Historic Site. Australia’s most intact convict site, between 1833 and 1877 the penal colony housed Britain and Australia’s worst criminals, and was considered inescapable. Today, the Historic Site has over 30 buildings, ruins and restored period homes set in 100 acres of landscaped grounds. In the company of Port Arthur’s resident Archaeologist, join an exclusive ‘behind the scenes tour’ of the site, which includes access to private collections and historic buildings not accessible to the general public and a private reception to enjoy Tasmanian wines and canapes made from locally sourced ingredients.

Day 8 Disembark in Hobart at 8:00am. A post cruise transfer to city or airport is included.

Please note:
Note on fitness levels: this trip is suitable for passengers of all fitness levels, though reasonable mobility is required to enjoy all it has to offer. Our Xplorer tender permits easy boarding without climbing any stairs. Hikes vary in intensity and where possible we split groups to suit easy and moderate walkers. Guests are welcome to opt out of any excursion and relax onboard – our top deck outdoor lounge is great on a sunny day. The ship has no elevator. As the itinerary covers remote regions, it is not suitable for passengers with serious medical conditions. Note that each itinerary will include a mix of the above attractions, depending on prevailing conditions. The Captain and Expedition Team will make daily itinerary changes to maximise the guest experience and take advantage of opportunities opened up by weather. There will be a daily briefing onboard to advise guests on the upcoming day’s activities. Time of departure and return are guaranteed – the rest is an adventure! The expedition will visit Port Davey and Bathurst Harbour conditions permitting. We always aim to visit these beautiful destinations, but if we are not able to enter, an alternative destination more appropriate to the inclement weather conditions will be chosen by the Captain. Note the summer temperature can still be very cool especially with the wind chill so warm layered clothing is essential.

Overview

Pristine Tasmania

Become enchanted by Tasmania’s breathtaking National Parks; from the perfect circular formation of Wineglass Bay, to the dramatic peaks of pink granite at Freycinet Peninsula, or the remote wildlife haven of Maria Island National Park. Guided by an expert Expedition Team and a Tasmania specialist who knows the area inside out, you’ll embark on easy to moderate short hikes including the famed Cape Hauy Track at Tasman Peninsula and the rugged Fluted Cape on Bruny Island.
If conditions allow, spend two days exploring the untouched Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area at Port Davey and Bathurst Harbour. Normally only accessible by seven-day hike or light aircraft, this region is undoubtedly one of the most pristine and beautiful landscapes on earth.
Coral Expeditions 7-night itinerary allows our guests to experience an authentic expedition voyage. The flexible itinerary enables the Captain to respond to weather conditions, ensuring you enjoy a complete and memorable expedition no matter the conditions. In the spirit of adventure, guests will be advised the day prior where their next adventure lies – perhaps an Oyster Farm, an coastal walk, or even a seal colony basking in the sunlight.

Highlights

Spend two full days exploring Port Davey World Heritage Wilderness area and Bathurst Harbour • Hike the Wineglass Bay Track in Freycinet National Park • Experience the diverse wildlife and history of Maria Island • Be in awe of 300m high sea cliffs at Tasman National Park • Delight in produce-driven food experiences and Tasmania’s cool-climate wines • Spot Fur Seals hauling up to Tasmania’s rocky cliffs • Marvel at the proud shipbuilding and maritime heritage at the Wooden Boat Centre in Franklin

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Ship information

Coral Discoverer

Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition

Length: 63 metres

Passenger Capacity: 72 (in 36 rooms)

Built: 2005 / Refurbished: 2016

Launched in 2005, Coral Discoverer set a new benchmark standard for small ship cruising in Australia. Refurbished in November 2016, she continues to raise the bar to new levels of sophistication in expedition cruising in the Southern Hemisphere.

The 1800-tonne Coral Discoverer is the grand vision of Coral Expeditions, pioneers in expedition and adventure cruises around Australia, Papua New Guinea and South East Asia. Her shallow draught and manoeuvrability allow her to go where larger vessels cannot. Her tender vessel, Xplorer, can seat all 72 passengers for excursions to beaches and rivers. Coral Discoverer is equipped with latest technology active stabilisers to ensure comfortable cruising in open waters and is fitted with modern safety and navigation equipment and wireless internet facilities.

Coral Discoverer was built to the exacting international SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) standards and specifications in Cairns, Australia, with one aim in mind; to create the ultimate small ship cruising experience. Australian flagged, and staffed entirely by an Australian and New Zealand crew, your experience aboard Coral Discoverer will be unique.

After the refurbishment, the Sun Deck has evolved to become a new social space and the hub of on board community living. This area has been converted into an undercover deck area complete with round ‘Explorer Bar’ with bar stools and sun deck with lounges and an area for outdoor exercise equipment.

Guest accommodation has also received a substantial upgrade with the addition of six Bridge Deck Balcony Staterooms providing coveted inside/outside living quarters. Each of our other Stateroom grades has also received a full upgrade with updated bathroom fixtures, soft furnishings and artwork making for an even more comfortable stay on board Coral Discoverer.

The Coral Discoverer offers five different grades of staterooms, ranging from Bridge Deck Balcony Staterooms to Main Deck Staterooms. Bridge Deck Balcony Staterooms are on the top deck and have private balconies opening out from French windows. All rooms are furnished with contemporary flair and feature original artwork, a small private en-suite, individually-controlled air-conditioning, an iPod dock, ample storage and Australian toiletries. All staterooms are serviced daily. Each stateroom is spacious, sized between 15sqm (161 square feet) to 20 sq. (215 square feet) and has either a balcony, feature picture windows or porthole windows. Most staterooms can be configured to either junior king or twin bedding.

Facilities on board

Sun Deck with undercover area, sun lounges and ample seating • Three fully stocked cocktail bars, including brand new round Explorer Bar on Sun Deck • Spacious, modern dining room, recently refurbished • Forward lounge • Reference library • Gift shop • Open bridge • Workout Area • Wireless internet available for laptops, mobile devices or via onboard guest computer • Limited laundry facilities available • SCUBA diving department (selected itineraries)

Contact
Booking
Luxury Mekong River Cruise
Aqua Mekong
31.01.2020
07.02.2020
7
Asia, Aqua Mekong Expedition Cruise
Fare from € 6.850
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Travelroute
Day 1

My Tho - Ho Chi Minh

We will collect you at the Ho Chi Minh meeting point and transfer you by air-conditioned coach to My Tho dock where we will welcome you aboard the Aqua Mekong. Settle into your floating retreat, with its window wall conferring an endlessly captivating panorama. Enjoy these private Mekong moments on your California king bed, terrace or daybed.

Day 2

Binh Thanh/sa Dec - My An Hung

Begin the day at Binh Thanh mat weaving village or opt to visit Sa Dec where we will peruse the vibrant market and see the famous house of Marguerite Duras' legendary lover, Mr. Huynh Thuy Le. In the afternoon, visit a typical Mekong Delta village called My An Hung where we will walk through verdant plantations. We will be invited to a local's home to taste local fruits while hearing traditional folk songs performed by villagers followed by a unique unicorn dance. A 17-kilometer Biking option is also available.

Day 3

Chau Doc - Vinh Xuong –ka’om Samnor Border

Travel by skiff along Bassac Canal to Chau Doc floating market then head off by van to Long Son Pagoda atop Sam Mountain. Ask the monks about their age-old Buddhist practices. Return via the bustling morning market. Optional 18 kilometers bike ride on Long Khanh Island or take a rickshaw ride to visit Tan Chau Market with chef. After lunch, relax by the pool, try traditional Khmer massage or learn to cook Mekong inspired dishes while we cross the border.

Day 4

Koh Oknha Tey - Preah Prosop

On this river of time we admire dexterous Khmer artisans dyeing and weaving kroma, the ubiquitous item no Khmer lives without. Explore the riverbank on two wheels if you wish, past Buddhist temples and thatch houses perched on spindly wooden stilts while white oxen wade just offshore. After lunch, we board our marine-grade aluminum skiffs and head towards the tamarind trees of Preah Prosop, a remote village little changed over several lifetimes.

Day 5

Phnom Penh

We show off the Cambodian capital to our passengers by motorized tuk-tuk, the Royal Palace, Silver Pagoda and the National Museum of Cambodia, home to the world’s largest collection of Khmer art. For those who wish, we visit the Tuol Sleng Museum of Genocide and the Killing Field or shopping at Russian Market. We bid farewell to 4-night guests who are disembarking in Phnom Penh.

Return to welcome our 3-night passengers over custom sundowners like the Salted Watermelon Crush with Thai basil. Together we celebrate the onward journey towards the heart of this mighty river with a Khmer Apsara performance, an indigenous tradition memorialized on the temple walls at Angkor Wat.

Day 6

Koh Chen - Kampong Prasat

In the silversmith village of Koh Chen, we watch artisans producing the magnificent silverware favored by Khmer royalty. We continue to Udong, the royal capital from the 17-19th centuries, where we learn about a uniquely challenging Buddhist practice at the Vipassana Dhura Mandala, a meditation center. In the afternoon, a walking tour of Kampong Prasat offers a close up perspective on local lives and their riverside environment.

Day 7

Kampong Chhnang – Kampong Tralach

In the cooler hours, we head into the lush countryside to visit traditional potters and palm-sugar producers, astride mountain bikes or chauffeured by shaded tuk-tuk. Into the rice paddies we pedal to watch wizened masters scale sky-piercing palms towering over us. Cruise across the glassy water and disembark among the lotuses for an ox-cart ride along the Tonle Sap riverbanks, past lacquered wooden houses where during these dry months residents take refuge in the relative cool of these outdoor impromptu living rooms.

Day 8

Phnom Penh

Customized exploration of Phnom Penh and disembarkation.

Overview

Aqua Mekong Expedition Cruise

Joining us for the full 7-night Mekong Expedition Cruise allows us to share with you all the mysteries and wonders we have discovered between the Mekong and Tonle Sap Rivers and among the diverse cultures thriving in our midst.

Passengers who travel with us during the high water season (August-November), from Siem Reap to Ho Chi Minh experience the full history of Mekong life, meeting Khmer farmers, Buddhist monks and our entrepreneurial friends in Vietnam’s kaleidoscopic wet markets along the way.

Sailing in the opposite direction, from the colonial chic of Saigon to the legendary Angkorian heritage in Siem Reap is to travel leisurely back in time across this legendary landscape.

During the low water season (December-August), our program includes much more time on the Cambodia stretch of the Mekong and along the Tonle Sap River.

River cruises on the Amazon and Mekong with Aqua Expeditions can be made in 4, 5 or 8 days. Aqua Blu cruises in Indonesia can be made in 8 or 13 days.

Highlights

Discover tipped pagoda temples and remote Buddhist monasteries • Meet Buddhist monks and learn about beliefs which have anchored religions and societies along the Mekong • Visit Tonle Sap, the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia and a UNESCO site • Fly through Mekong waters by skiff with helpful insights about local sights and wildlife from our guides • Venture out into local Mekong River villages to discover everyday life unfolding before you • Spot billed pelicans in their last Southeast Asian refuge.

Please Note: More Aqua Mekong Expedition Cruises are available, not all of them are listed online. Please contact us for more details.

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Ship information

Aqua Mekong

Vessel Type: Luxury River Expedition

Length: 62.4 meters

Passenger Capacity: 40

Crew Capacity: 40

Year Built: 2014

Spacious and indulgent, yet intimate enough to feel entirely exclusive, the Aqua Mekong incorporates relaxed yet refined lounging and dining areas and can accommodate a maximum of 40 guests plus crew. Modern navigation technologies and the highest cruise ship standards as well as our experienced river pilot and crew ensure smooth travel and safety on the water.
The Aqua Mekong has 20 air conditioned Design Suites, each one a generous 30 square meters (320 square feet), eight with balconies and all created entirely of local materials with the relaxed sophistication and contemporary comforts of a five star resort. Floor to ceiling panoramic windows allow guests to gaze upon the Mekong from the pillow top California king size bed that can be converted upon request into two full twin beds. More captivating views await on the plush, roomy daybed placed by the window wall or for our eight balcony accommodations, outside along with a romantic table for two. Those who wish to keep up on the world beyond these enthralling riverbanks will appreciate the flat screen television and complementary high speed wireless internet.
Sunlit indoors and out, the top level Observation Deck aboard the Aqua Mekong has been designed to seamlessly connect guests with the constantly shifting landscape of floating Vietnamese villages, French colonial church spires and gilded Buddhist stupas along this mighty river, always in the utmost comfort. Whether one chooses to relax in the air conditioned Indoor Lounge, go horizontal under the sun outside at the ship’s Outdoor Lounge area or cool off with a plunge in the shimmering pool at the bow side, the Observation Deck ensures that the river always remains in full view.
Guests gravitate to the Indoor Lounge in the mornings for cà phê đá, Vietnamese coffee poured over ice with sweet condensed milk, between excursions to swap travellers’ tales and for daily lectures from the expert local guides.

Contact
Booking
Small Expedition Yacht
Aqua Blu
01.02.2020
08.02.2020
7
Asia, Indonesia – Raja Ampat Cruise
Fare from € 6.850
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Travelroute
Day 1

Sorong Harbour

Arrive at Sorong to a warm welcome. Board Aqua Blu and cruise to Gam Island as the sun sets.

Day 2

Gam Island, Waisai & Kabui

Awake to the beauty of Gam Island. Early morning trekking at Gam and Waisai. Tour Kabui and Karst in the afternoon on tenders, or visit a local village and bat cave on foot.

Day 3

Cape Kri - Arborek

Rise in the morning to birdsong and explore the soft sandy coastline of Cape Kri on foot before a short cruise to a dive site that holds the world record for species spotted in a single 90-minute dive. Snorkeling is also highly rewarding. Sail to Arborek Island for dinner.

Day 4

Wayag

Watch the magnificence of Pulau Wayag’s limestone islets and lagoons unveil before your eyes as the sun rises. Climb to the top of Mount Pindito for a bird’s eye view of the stunning surroundings and attempt to spot rare birds of paradise before making the lagoons and reefs your home for the day. Arrival at Aljui bay and round off with dinner by the sea.

Day 5

Aljui Bay & Pulau Pef

Visit a pearl farm in Aljui Bay before cruising to Pulau Pef and Yangello for snorkeling and watersports in the afternoon. Explore hidden lagoons and karst limestone islets aboard our tenders or kayaks. Arrive at Dayang Island for dinner.

Day 6

Dayang Island

Embark on a morning trek with our guides to look for birds of paradise in the lush forest. Dayang island is known for plenty of marine life, especially manta rays. Snorkeling is excellent at Wai along the bordering reef systems. For adventurous divers, explore the sunken wreckage of a WW2 P47D fighter plane and the beautiful reefs and sea-mounts of Tapok.

Day 7

Birie Island

Arrival in Birie, a group of islands, bays and lagoons that lie just off the coast of north Batanta. Discover mangrove-fringed bays and plenty of wildlife en route to the spectacular waterfall in Batanta mainland is a must. Ship will cruise eastwards towards Sorong during dinner.

Day 8

Sorong Harbour

Enjoy a sumptuous breakfast onboard in Sorong before your outbound flight.

Overview

Indonesia – Raja Ampat Cruise

Raja Ampat, with its glittering turquoise waters and natural karst formations, is best known for showcasing the world’s most diverse collection of underwater habitats and marine species. On land, uncover hidden lagoons, coves and beaches, as well as forests that shelter rare bird species, including the endemic Wilson’s bird of paradise.

Aqua Blu cruises in Indonesia can be made in 8 or 13 days. River cruises on the Amazon and Mekong with Aqua Expeditions can be made in 4, 5 or 8 days. 

Highlights

Wayag. The most iconic of the Raja Ampat islands with its surreal karst landscapes and atolls • Cape Kri. A marine sweet spot with impressive biodiversity in the nutrient-rich Dampier Strait • Kabui Bay. An expansive inland sea with unique sights and experiences • Dayang & Birie Island. A rewarding and one-of-a-kind inner coastal waterway journey • Arborek Island. Visit a Papuan village and get up-close with manta rays

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Ship information

Aqua Blu
Vessel Type: Expedition Yacht
Length: 60 meters
Passenger Capacity: 30
Crew Capacity: 25
Built/Converted/Refurbished: 1968/2006/2019
Presenting a brand-new cruise experience in the pristine East Indonesian Archipelago, Aqua Blu is a long-range explorer yacht sailing the region’s most prized destinations, including Komodo National Park, Spice Islands and Raja Ampat on unforgettable 7- and 12-night itineraries.
Where modern luxury meets naval heritage
With a grand legacy as the former British Naval Explorer HMS Beagle and later as the private yacht of a European aristocratic family, Aqua Blu is a compelling maritime statement. A 2019 refurbishment overseen by Dutch yacht design maestro Cor D. Rover brings the vessel to world-class cruising specifications. Guests can expect to embrace an distinguished sense of history and seafaring evolution when they set foot on this one-of-a-kind cruise ship.
Inside the four-deck, 15-suite Aqua Blu, Cor has tastefully paired with a brass-and-ivory interior theme with generous and inviting indoor and outdoor social spaces, including a sun deck.
Unlocking access to the Earth’s most intriguing destinations
Faster, further, greater safety and comfort — Aqua Blu’s naval pedigree makes it the perfect vessel to navigate East Indonesia’s vast seas. Having attained the highest international classifications (RINA, SOLAS, ISM) in safety, the vessel is additionally equipped with Quantum Zero Speed stabilizers for optimal comfort at rest or while sailing.
Aqua Blu’s range stands heads and shoulders above that of its peers in East Indonesia. Able to cover vast distances in a short span of time — and in any sea condition — the vessel enables explorers on board to experience the most varied, enjoyable and rewarding coastal cruise itineraries in this wild and stunningly beautiful region of the world.
On Board Living and Social Areas:
Sun Deck with Outdoor Seating, Lounge Sofa and Barbecue • Bridge Deck with Jacuzzi, Outdoor Lounge Area, Spa and Exercise Zone •Forecastle Deck with Outdoor Dining and Seating Area, Indoor Lounge Bar, Library and TV Room • Main Deck with Outdoor Seating, Salon and Dining Room

Contact
Booking