French luxury and expedition line Ponant released its 64-page brochure including a wide range of itineraries which explore the Asia Pacific region in 2016 and 2017.
23 voyages to seven countries in Asia, numerous island chain archipelagos and South Pacific nations were announced by Ponant, with no less than 15 call ports famous as UNESCO World Heritage sites.
Passengers will discover a wealth of fascinating destinations after boarding two modern small vessels: sister-ships L’Austral and Le Soleal. Some cruises are designated Expeditions and take advantage of the compact size and manoeuvrability of the vessels, which provide Zodiac expedition craft for close-up opportunities.
Throughout the trips, specialist lecturers will be ready to enhance the experience. Ponant Expeditions will also feature an expedition team headed by award-winning adventurer and wildlife photographer from Australia, Mick Fogg.
The options range from the giant stone Moais on Easter Island and the thousand year old petroglyphs of Fatu Hiva to exploring the remote islands of Sub Antarctic. In Solomon Islands and Vanuatu passengers will have the opportunity to meet members of John Frum Cargo Cult, snorkel in waters renowned for wrecks since Second World War and climb an active volcano. Borneo presents orang-utan's cousin - the ‘man of the forest’, in his natural habitat.
Other extraordinary opportunities include a visit to Papua's remote Asmat region, snorkeling in the pristine marine area of Raja Ampat, or sailing in the wake of famous mariner Captain Bligh during a visit at Pitcairn Island and Tahiti.
Japanese itineraries provide plentiful opportunities to experience the customs, culture and classic beauty that pervades the land of kimonos, ancient castles and exquisite gardens.
French luxury on the youngest fleet afloat will help passengers experience the difference offered by small ship cruising. Intimate voyages venture where large cruise ships simply cannot, with trips across the South Pacific and Asia.