Island & Cultures of Papua New Guinea
This PONANT all-new 11-day Expedition cruise aboard Le Lapérouse will take you to discover the wonders and ancestral tribes of Papua New Guinea.
You will board your ship in Cairns. With its many colonial buildings, its picturesque port and its exceptional panorama over the surrounding natural environment, this city in the north-east of Australia is sure to win you over.
Le Lapérouse will then set sail for Papua New Guinea, a fascinating land that is home to no fewer than 700 ethnic groups within a highly diverse yet mainly unexplored, ecosystem.
Your call at Tufi, will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of your voyage. You will fall under the charm of this picturesque region, dubbed the “Scandinavia of the Tropics”, with its deep fiords or locally known ‘rias’ formed through volcanic activity. In this unique setting the local Papuan tribes will share their customs, beliefs and artwork with you.
You will then head north along the coast to Madang, nicknamed "the most beautiful city in the South Pacific. Within this attractive province with great geographical diversity, 170 different languages are spoken. Its festival showcases this richness and offers colourful exhibitions of “songs” interpreted by many of the cultural groups of the province. They include the mysterious Asaro Mudmen, who re-enact a warrior episode from their history wearing masks of mud, their bodies coated in clay.
In the heart of the Solomon Sea you will discover the splendid turquoise waters and white sand beaches of the uninhabited islands of the Lusançay archipelago. These paradisiac coral islets offer the promise of sumptuous moments of swimming and snorkelling to discover fabulous seabeds.
The encounters with the wildlife described above illustrate possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed.
- 10 night luxury cruise ex Cairns aboard PONANT's Le Laperouse
- All meals on board
- the Open Bar: beginning with boarding, and during the duration of the cruise, a wide selection of drinks (mineral water, soft drinks, wine, beer, Charles Heidsieck champagne, spirits, coffee, tea) is served on request and at any time of the day. Certain premium alcoholic beverages on the menu are not included in the Open Bar,
- free Wi-Fi internet access 24 hours a day*
- shore excursions with an expert expeditions team
- Port taxes
PLUS! Ultimate Cruising guests also receive:
- 1 night accommodation pre-cruise
- Chauffeur driven luxury car transfers from your home to the airport, return (within 35km)
Washed by the Coral Sea, the harbour town of Cairns is located on Australia's north-east coast. The seafront esplanade is a popular place for locals and visitors to walk, swim and picnic under the shade of swaying palm trees. The hills surrounding Cairns form the gateway to the Queensland Rainforests, proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage site for their fauna and flora from the Gondwana era.
Alotau became the provincial capital of Milne Bay in 1969 and today has a population of approximately 16,000. It serves as our port of entry into Papua New Guinea. Missionaries, miners, pearlers, Japanese and American warships have all contributed to the History of Milne Bay. Perhaps the most significant history surrounds the Battle of Milne Bay. It was here that the invading Japanese army suffered their first land defeat in the Pacific War in 1942. A memorial park at the battle site commemorates the event. The local people are warm and welcoming resulting in one of the most relaxed, secure and easy-going towns in Papua New Guinea. Join your expedition team for a tour taking in the town markets and WWII memorials.
Often described as the “Scandinavia of the tropics”. The spectacular Tufi “fiords” plunge over 90 metres deep and rise over 150 metres vertically above the water making for a spectacular backdrop. The traditional way of life plays an important role amongst the villagers with many living in isolated areas along the coast of Cape Nelson and on the slopes of Mount Trafalgar. The area is known for its production of tapa cloth, made from the bark of the paper mulberry tree and skilfully decorated. Guests will travel into the ancient mangrove forests of the Fiords to witness one of the most colourful traditional performances in all of Papua New Guinea. There is also the opportunity to swim and snorkel in the clear waters of Kamoa Beach.
The Tami Islands (Kalal, Wanam & Idjan) are a small group of uplifted coral atolls, with two main villages on the two larger islands and many smaller reefs and cays. In the centre is a beautiful, crystal clear blue lagoon with abundant marine life and stunning coral formations. The islands, located in Morobe Province not far from the town of Finschaffen are seldom-visited. Tami Islanders are renowned artisans and are most famous for their intricately decorated bowls.
Madang Township was once known as the "prettiest town in the South Pacific". Its peninsula setting is a show-place of parks, waterways, luxuriant shade trees and sparkling tropical islands. The diverse geographical nature of Madang province is reflected in the 170 different languages that are spoken. This diversity is showcased in the Madang festival with its colourful displays of “sing sings” performed by numerous cultural groups from across the Madang Province. Today, you will also be treated to a number of cultural performances showcasing the local customs, costume and dance of the coastal, midland and highland communities.
Located at the Southern end of the picturesque Huon gulf lies Morobe Harbour, named for the French explorer Jean-Michel Huon de Kermadec. Here, in one of the remotest parts of the Papua New Guinea mainland, culture and tradition remain strong. Several villages are spread along the foreshore amid lush forests where locals can be seen fishing or tending to their communal crops. Guests are welcomed ashore by the proud and friendly local people who relish the opportunity to showcase their cultural heritage. You will be welcomed ashore with a ceremony and cultural performances followed by the opportunity to witness traditional Morobe village life.
A Solomon Sea archipelago situated in the Milne Bay province in Papua New Guinea, the Lusancay Islands were named after the French navigator Pierre Carré de Lusançay, who participated in the D’Entrecasteaux expedition at the end of the 18th century. Protected from human impact, the Lusancay Islands are considered to be a real paradise of coral reefs and white-sand beaches, offering visitors magnificent panoramas. You will have the opportunity to swim and snorkel in the warm, tropical waters.
The Samarai islands are located in the China Strait off the south-eastern tip of New Guinea. In its colonial heyday it was said to be one of the most beautiful places in the Pacific. The island was declared a National Historical Heritage Island by the government of Papua New Guinea in 2006. Just 3km west of Samarai, Kwato Island was once an educational center and home to a thriving boat building industry. Following the old tree-lined road to the top of the island reveals a stonewalled church that was built in 1937 and remains a testimony to the missionaries of a bygone era. Join your expedition team for a guided walk on Samarai and Kwato Islands. You also will enjoy swimming and snorkelling on nearby Deka Deka island.
Departure Dates & Pricing
Cruise departs from Cairns 10 February 2023.
Pricing starts from NZ$10,410 pp share twin. All pricing is in New Zealand dollars and subject to change without notice at any time. All prices and information is subject to availability.
- Luxury Expedition
- 24 Hr Room Service
- All meals
- Boutique &/or Salon
- Drinks All Day
- On-Board Lecturer
- Pool &/or Spa
- Shore Excursions
- Built Date 2018
- Crew TBA
- Capacity 184
- Luxury Expeditions
Featuring innovative and environmentally-friendly equipment, elegantly designed staterooms, spacious suites with large windows, and lounge areas that open onto the outside, Le Lapérouse embodies the unique atmosphere that is the cruise line’s hallmark: a subtle blend of refinement, intimacy and comfort. Le Laperouse is the first ship to offer the underwater passenger lounge, allowing guests to see and hear the undersea world. Images Courtesy Ponant.
24 Hr Room Service
Boutique &/or Salon
Drinks All Day
Pool &/or Spa