Paying tribute to the most famous French explorers, the four 184-passenger Explorer-class sister ships will be named Le Bougainville, Le Champlain, Le Kerguelen and Le Laperouse, and join the Ponant fleet between 2018 and 2019.
The cruise operator demonstrates its loyalty to the French flag and flies it on its 5-ship fleet.
Among new features, the 131-meter long ships, all of which are ice-class-certified, will feature a retractable marina. The first to be launched is Le Lapérouse (June 2018), followed by Le Champlain (scheduled for September).
Sales for the first ship will open in November 2016 for Iceland sailings and in April 2017 for the Seychelles and Japan cruises. Le Champlain sales also open in April for Amazon and Orinoco rivers.