Exploring the Malay Archipelago - with National Geographic
* Subject to availability.
- A cruise in partnership with National Geographic Expeditions offering enrichment with a National Geographic Photographer and an Expert specialised in the destination onboard.
- Expedition voyage discovering culture, landscapes, fauna and flora of the Malay Archipelago.
- Zodiac® outings and shore visits with your team of naturalists.
- The Kei Islands and their stunning beaches.
- Expeditions in a Zodiac® to Triton Bay’s karst islands.
- The Malukus, the paradisiac Spice Islands.
- The historic island of Rhun, traded by the British for Manhattan Island.
- Visit the Tangkoko National Park to look for the famous Tarsier, one of the tiniest primates in the world.
- Swimming and snorkelling in warm tropical oceans teeming with colourful fishes and beautiful corals.
Staterooms & Suites
Deluxe Stateroom AU$9,530 Available Prestige stateroom Deck 4 AU$10,090 Available Prestige stateroom Deck 5 AU$10,380 Available Prestige Deck 6 AU$10,670 Available Deluxe Suite Deck 3 AU$14,330 Available Deluxe Suite Deck 5 AU$14,330 Available Deluxe Suite Deck 4 AU$14,330 Available Deluxe Suite Deck 6 AU$14,330 Available Prestige Suite Deck 5 AU$15,430 Available Prestige Suite Deck 6 AU$15,890 Available Privilege Suite Deck 6 AU$16,350 Available Privilege Suite Deck 5 AU$16,350 Available Grand Deluxe Suite Deck 5 AU$16,830 Available Grand Deluxe Suite Deck 6 AU$16,830 Available Owner's Suite AU$24,280 Available
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 spirit, Le Lapérouse 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.
Port of call & excursions
DarwinEmbarkation 08/09/2020 from 16H00 to 17H00 . Departure 08/09/2020 at 18H00 .
Darwin is located in Australia’s Northern Territory which is also known as the “Top End”. It is the capital city and the most populated town of the Northern Territory. Darwin is a beautiful tropical city, a melting pot of people and cultures, over 50 different cultures live and work side by side that prides itself in its unique and friendly laid-back lifestyle. Discover the new Parliamant House opened in 1994, a magnificent example of tropical architecture and Admiralty House declared heritage place, a tropical-style home elevated on stilts that has survived two cyclones and numerous air raids. You will also enjoy the bustling waterfront on the Timor Sea.
9 September 2020 – At seaArrival 09/09/2020. Departure 09/09/2020.
During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observer marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.
10 September 2020 – Kei Islands, Maluku IslandsArrival 10/09/2020. Departure 10/09/2020.
The Kei Islands are blessed with kilometres of stunning, yet almost entirely empty, white-sand beaches and a deeply hospitable population. Beneath the mostly Christian facade, Kei culture is fascinatingly distinctive. Local history holds that ancestors of contemporary Kei islanders came from Bali, part of the expanding Hindu Majapahit kingdom from the western archipelago. Enjoy a day of swimming and snorkelling on an idyllic uninhabited picture postcard tropical island.
11 September 2020 – Triton Bay, West PapuaArrival 11/09/2020. Departure 11/09/2020.
Triton Bay is one of three regions in Indonesia’s West Papua province that comprise the Bird’s Head Seascape (the other two are Raja Ampat and Cenderawasih Bay), which is now considered by marine biologists to be the epicentre of the Coral Triangle. It contains more fish and coral species than anywhere else on the planet. Its unparalleled marine biodiversity and endemism, habitat richness, and relatively intact nature of its ecosystems are unique. Join your expedition team for a zodiac voyage through the spectacular rainforest capped karst islands. Later in the day enjoy the opportunity to explore the richness of the underwater realm.
12 September 2020 – At seaArrival 12/09/2020. Departure 12/09/2020.
13 September 2020 – Banda RunArrival 13/09/2020. Departure 13/09/2020.
The first English overseas colony under the sovereignty of James the first, the Island of Rhun has played several important roles in world history, particularly during the spice wars of the 17th century. Such was the importance of this tiny outpost to colonial empires that it was a significant trade Lynchpin during the treaty of Breda that ended the second Anglo-Dutch war. During the negotiations England ceded control of Rhun in exchange for the Island of New Netherland. The exchange complete, the English renamed the small settlement on the Island from New Amsterdam to New York. Join local guides and your expedition team for a walking tour amongst the many historic locations.
14 September 2020 – Banda Neira, Maluku IslandsArrival 14/09/2020. Departure 14/09/2020.
From age-old traditional cultures and ancient vestiges, to coral reefs and lush green jungle… The attractions of the remote Banda archipelago seem endless. Better known as the legendary “Spice Islands” of the Ancient World, these small volcanic landmasses were the fabled prize of colonial powers for more than four centuries. Every colonial power of significance fought for control of these ten small islands that today have become largely forgotten. Walking the streets of Banda Neira is a surreal experience as your eyes are drawn to the eclectic mix of Portuguese, Dutch and British architecture, the remnants of a rich and tumultuous history. It is without doubt the most historically significant and interesting of all the “Spice Islands”.
15 September 2020 – Pulau SaparuaArrival 15/09/2020. Departure 15/09/2020.
East of Ambon Island, which hosts the capital of Maluku province, discover Saparua, the largest and most populous of the Lease Islands. Largely undiscovered by mainstream tourism, the Lease Islands are known for their friendly population, quaint villages, historical sites, fine white sand beaches and coral reefs. In the small historic town of Saparua, do not miss to explore the many cultural sites and the Duurstede Fort, built by the Dutch in 1691. You will then have the oppportunity to swim and snorkel in the clear tropical waters of Pulau Molana, a small, uninhabited island known for its coral reefs and having the finest white sand beach in the Lease Islands.
15 September 2020 – Pulau MolanaArrival 15/09/2020. Departure 15/09/2020.
16 September 2020 – At seaArrival 16/09/2020. Departure 16/09/2020.
17 September 2020 – Tangkoko Nature Reserve, SulawesiArrival 17/09/2020. Departure 17/09/2020.
Tangkoko Nature Reserve is home to at least 127 mammal, 233 bird and 104 reptile and amphibian species. Enjoy a guided walk through the rainforest in search of the Celebes crested macaque, Sulawesi bear cuscus, and the Spectral Tarsier, one of the smallest primates in the world.
18 September 2020 – Pulau NituArrival 18/09/2020. Departure 18/09/2020.
Pulau Nitu is an uninhabited picture postcard perfect island located in the Sangihe archipelago roughly halfway between Sulawesi, Indonesia and Mindanao in the Philippines. This small remote group of islands combine for a total area of 813 square kilometres and many have active volcanoes, with the largest being Karangetang on Siau island. The deep waters at the junction of the Celebes and Molucca seas provide a rich diversity of marine life amongst crystal clear warm tropical waters. So, you will have the opportunity to swim and snorkel amongst the schools of fishes and brightly coloured corals.
19 September 2020 – At seaArrival 19/09/2020. Departure 19/09/2020.
20 September 2020 – Himokilan Island, Cuatro IslandsArrival 20/09/2020. Departure 20/09/2020.
21 September 2020 – Sibuyan IslandArrival 21/09/2020. Departure 21/09/2020.
Sibuyan is the second largest island in the Romblon archipelago and has always been isolated from the other islands in the Philippines, a particularity that is due to its geological history. The island remains very much untouched and wild. It boasts an exceptional ecosystem and is home to several endemic species, which is why it is sometimes dubbed “the Galápagos of Asia”. Dominated by Mount Guiting-Guiting, which rises to an altitude of more than 2,000 metres or 6,750 feet, it will provide a perfect insight into the natural beauty and culture diversity of these parts. Right near Sibuyan, you could get the chance to swim at the beautiful white-sand beaches on the minuscule Cresta de Gallo Island, surrounded by crystal-clear waters.
22 September 2020 – At seaArrival 22/09/2020. Departure 22/09/2020.
ManilaDisembarkation 23/09/2020 at 07H00 .
On first sight, the Philippines' capital shows its highly Americanised Asian megalopolis side, with ultramodern skyscrapers set all along the waterfront. But when you stroll through the cobbled streets of the Intramuros district, you'll discover a different side of Manila, one that's full of old-world charm. An enchanted pause in the middle of urban bustle, Rizal Parkﾒs 60 hectares of magnificent green parkland is perfect for recharging your batteries. To see the city from a different angle, take a walk along Roxas boulevard, a popular seaside promenade.
The information below is current but subject to change at any time without advance notice from government authorities. Please consult your respective government agencies for visa and health information.
Passport valid for at least six (6) months beyond the completion of your trip. Passport must contain at least two completely clear, blank, unused visa pages for each visa required, not including any amendment pages. Visa pages with stains or ink from other pages in the passport are not usable. Guests who deviate from the scheduled embarkation or disembarkation port should research the foreign entry requirements for the port country. Due to government regulations, regrettably, Ponant will have to deny boarding to any guest who fails to obtain the appropriate travel documentation for this trip.
Warning about the use of drones: the use of drones aboard PONANT ships, whether they are sailing at sea, at a port of call or anchored, is strictly forbidden. The use of drones on land in the Arctic and Antarctic regions is also strictly forbidden by international polar regulations. In other regions, it may be possible to use drones on land if permission has been obtained from the relevant authorities of each country and each region travelled through, as well as a pilot’s licence that should be obtained from your home country. Passengers are responsible for obtaining these permits; they should be able to present them at all times. Passengers who do not obtain these authorisations expose themselves to the risk of legal proceedings.
Indonesia: Visa delivered and charged onboard (35€ subject to change) valid for 30 days.
Australia: an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) must be obtained before your arrival in Australia. For more information, please visit www.australia.gov.au/information-and-services/immigration-and-visas. Carriers should be aware that there will not be any physical evidence in your passport.
Australian customs regulations are very strict, especially for the import of food items such as fresh food (even sealed), fruits, eggs, meat, plants, vegetables, seeds, grains. Fur and feathers are also forbidden. We highly recommend you consult this website for further details : www.australia.gov.au/information-and-services/immigration-and-visas/customs-clearance.
It is recommended that you contact your health professional for any specific medical advise relating to travel through these regions, including advice on Malaria prevention and dengue fever.
Discover the unique concept of PONANT tropical expedition cruises: explore the world’s extreme regions while enjoying luxurious comfort and service.
A luxury expedition voyage
Choosing a PONANT expedition cruise means choosing a state of mind: the alliance of elegance and authenticity, of exploration and comfort, of adventure and refinement… The comfort of your ship and your stateroom, personalised and attentive service, refined gastronomy: a very special atmosphere that we take great care to maintain. In the heart of the archipelagos of Oceania or the atolls of the Indian Ocean, along the wild coastlines of Central America or Australia, our luxurious services will ensure that your expedition cruise is an unforgettable experience.
PONANT, expedition cruise specialists
With almost 20 years of experience in the extreme regions, PONANT, the world’s number 1 polar cruise company, is also a real specialist in the planet’s most remote tropical regions. Our latest-generation fleet has the most modern technology to guarantee both your safety and respect for the regions visited. The size of our ships means we can get as close as possible to areas that are difficult to reach, offering a privileged access to preserved sites. Our flexibility enables us to adapt to the surprises inherent to these expedition itineraries.
Professional expedition teams, varied activities
After scouting missions in the field, our Expedition Leaders and their teams of naturalist guides design exceptional itineraries in the tropical regions. During the cruise, they organise daily outings and shore visits in Zodiac dinghies so as to get as close to nature as possible. They can reserve local means of transport (dugout canoes, bush taxis, local buses, etc.) in order to reach essential sites for hiking (volcanoes, nature reserves, etc.) or for visiting isolated villages. Indeed, the close relationships that our teams have been able to build with the local communities will enable you to share the life and ancestral customs of these peoples for a few hours. The naturalist guides also supervise snorkelling tours to discover the coral reef fauna. On board, the naturalist guides will share their knowledge during various conferences on fauna, the history of the great explorations, geology and climatology…
National Geographic & PONANT Expedition Cruises
For 130 years, National Geographic has explored the people, places and events of our world, showcasing the works of leading explorers, scientists, environmentalists, photographers and film makers. It is National Geographic’s deep belief that when people understand the world, they care more deeply and take responsibility for it. That’s why National Geographic and PONANT have partnered to offer unique ocean cruise expeditions that explore the far corners of the world.
Aboard each luxury, small group PONANT voyage, a National Geographic expert and photographer will join guests to share their knowledge and insights. They will enrich the expedition experience through fascinating presentations and informal discussions, offering photography tips and a chance to make a difference.
From these expeditions, portions of the profits will be donated to the National Geographic Society, which supports researchers and experts engaged in protecting and preserving the planet and its various species and populations. National Geographic Society has funded groundbreaking scientists and changemakers, each year offering over 450 grants to researchers and explorers, and sharing their findings with the world.
To learn more visit: nationalgeographic.com.au/ponant
Expeditions programs include activities such as Zodiac® outings (sometimes with "wet landing"), moderate walks to more active hikes. All this accompanied by your expedition team of naturalist guides. Certain zodiac® outings will not allow for landings just cruising. Landings will depend on weather conditions, winds and the state of the sea. These can force a change of plans at any time.
Travelling to isolated regions is an exhilarating experience. The raw beauty and untouched wilderness offer an unusual chance to experience a place where there is little evidence of human presence. Inevitably, there are some consequences that come with such remoteness: please remember that you are far from modern hospitals with full medical facilities, thus evacuation is highly expensive. Without the necessary medical coverage, all expenses will have to be immediately paid from with your personal funds. We urge you to subscribe a full coverage insurance, choose your insurance company very carefully and be extremely vigilant and ensure your insurance is fully comprehensive.
Taking into consideration the unusual and exceptional character of expedition itineraries, the calls shown are an indication only. The final route will be confirmed by the Captain and Expedition Leader, who will take into account the touristic quality of the sites and above all, the safety of the passengers. Their decision will be subject to that of local authorities.
Dressing tips :
- Cotton comfrortable and light weight shorts/bermudas
- Light weight long trousers
- Long-sleeved breathable UPF50+ shirts
- Cotton short sleeves T-shirt
- Aquatic UV long-sleeve T-shirt for sun protection during snorkeling or swimming (except for the Amazon cruises where bathing is not allowed)
- Aquatic non-slip sandals (except for the Amazon cruises where bathing is not allowed)
- Windproof, waterproof and breathable outer layer
- Broad brimmed anti-UV hat with strap
- Comfortable walking shoes
- Waterproof backpack for camera
- Sunscreen and after-sun high index & insect repellent
- Note: During your visits to some local communities, all guests will be required to dress respectfully. Ladies must have their shoulders and thighs covered. Gentlemen should have their shoulders covered also.
Feel free to visit the PONANT online shop which offers a selection of equipment and accessories adapted to our destinations at the following address: https://boutique.ponant.com
Benefits of the PONANT shop:
- expert advice to gear up
- a selection of technical equipment and accessories approved by our naturalists
- Duty Free prices
- delivery directly on board