Explore through the heart of Melanesia to the western edge of Polynesia, from the Solomon Islands to Fiji. Receive warm welcomes in the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu; you’ll be greeted with traditional dances as you land by Zodiac on remote and verdant shores, while a warm smile andBula! greet you on arrival in Fiji. Search for endemic bird species, snorkel and dive stunning reefs and wrecks, and soak up the tranquil beauty of palm-fringed beaches.

Highlights


• Arrive to Owaraha in the Solomon Islands for a series of traditional dances and music, then walk to see the island’s traditional spirit houses

• Take a local canoe ride up the crystal-clear Riri River to the spectacular Riri Blue Hole grotto on Vanuatu’s Espiritu Santo Island

• Visit mysterious Ambrym Island in Vanuatu—known as a place of magic and spirits—and witness the traditional Rom dance

• Visit the traditional island of the Fijian firewalkers—Beqa

• Spot rare and colorful birds and flowers on Fiji’s spectacular “Garden Island,” Taveuni, and the lovely and less-visited Kadavu

Arrive in Brisbane, Australia, where we check in to our hotel. Join us for a welcome briefing this evening to meet your fellow travelers.
Have breakfast at the hotel before transferring to the airport for a flight to Honiara, a former U.S. supply depot and a strategic WWII battleground. Tour around the outskirts of the city to see sites well known from the Battle of Guadalcanal in 1942-43. See the shores of Red Beach and the vital airbase at Henderson Field. Visit the hills above Honiara where some of the fiercest battles took places. Then, embark National Geographic Orion in the late afternoon. (B,L,D)
On the tiny isle of Owaraha (formerly known as Santa Ana), we’re greeted with a traditional dance performed by villagers in elaborate costumes, body paint, and masks. Walk across the small island to Nafinotoga to see Spirit Houses containing the skulls and bones of ancient chiefs of the Snake Clan and the Turtle Clan. (B,L,D)
Take advantage of a full day at sea to settle into the relaxed pace of life on board. Watch for marine life from the deck, study our route on the navigational charts, and attend talks by our experts. (B,L,D)
Captain James Cook named the islands of Vanuatu the “New Hebrides” because they reminded him of the rugged isles off Scotland’s coast. On the main island of Espiritu Santo, experience one of the best wreck dives in the world: the S.S. President Coolidge, a luxury cruise liner used as a troop carrier during World War II. Alternatively, enjoy a serene canoe paddle to the Riri Blue Hole, a jewel-blue freshwater source surrounded by jungle. (B,L,D)
Ambyrm is known for its active volcanoes, black sand beaches, and mystery and magic. Arrive ashore to witness the striking Rom dance, traditionally a secret event. Involving incredible masks and elaborate outfits that represent spirits, this is a cultural experience specific only to this island. (B,L,D)
Ride Zodiacs to Lelepa to visit Vanuatu’s first and only UNESCO World Heritage site, the final residence and burial site of 17th-century Chief Roi Mata. Here, we’ll be welcomed with traditional songs and dance, and enter the impressive Fels Cave. (B,L,D)
On Tanna Island, visit the friendly community in Port Resolution in the shadow of Mt. Yasur. Experience some of the local traditions and dances, as well as locally made handicrafts. Sample the strong, local kava made for special celebrations. (B,L,D)
Relax on deck as we make our passage from Vanuatu to Fiji or attend talks by our expert expedition and photo teams. (B,L,D)
More than 300 islands make up the remote volcanic archipelago of Fiji and we will be exploring here for three days. After entering the large lagoon of Beqa, come ashore at the lovely Lawaki Beach Resort, a rustic and beautiful place to spend the day. Take a boat ride and hike through across the island to a local village. Taste local fruits and snorkel off the beach in the beautiful Beqa Lagoon. Beqa is considered the traditional “home” of the Fijian firewalker. Witness this dramatic ceremony and the incredible strength and discipline required to perform it. (B,L,D)
Taveuni, Fiji’s third largest island, is known as “The Garden Island” for its rich vegetation—which includes several species found nowhere else in the world. Head inland to discover the waterfalls of Bouma National Heritage Park and search for species such as orange fruit doves, endemic silktails, fantails, and parrots. Visit the village of Waitabu to meet the local people, taste locally harvested fruits and prepared baked goods, and to see a dance performance by some of the local, talented children. (B,L,D)
Join the ship’s naturalists for a beautiful scenic hike to see some of the incredible vistas and the rich variety of bird life. Explore the lovely village of Dravuni, or snorkel and dive in the refreshing Fijian water, rich in marine life. Enjoy a quiet exploration of the lagoon by stand-up paddleboard or kayak. (B,L,D)
Disembark in Lautoka this morning. Take a tour of western Viti Levu Island then transfer to the international airport at Nadi for flights home or choose to extend your stay and check in to our hotel. (B,L)
Itineraries are subject to change.

Category 1

$16,730 AUD pp
Category 1
These cabins feature an oval window and two single beds, two beds that can be converted to a queen-size bed, or a queen size bed (call for details). You'll find an armchair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall.

Category 2

$20,290 AUD pp
Category 2
These roomy cabins feature an oval window and two single beds, two beds that can be converted to a queen-size bed, or a queen size bed (call for details). You'll find an armchair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall.

Category 3

$23,530 AUD pp
Category 3
Cat 3 Suite with Window #401-412, 414-419 These suites have a comfortable sofa in the sitting area with a large window and plenty of storage. They have a variety of bed configurations (call for details) plus a writing desk and chair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Modern bathrooms are generously sized with roomy glass-walled shower stall.

Category 1 Solo

$25,090 AUD pp
Category 1 Solo
These solo cabins feature a window or two portholes, a queen-size bed, writing desk and chair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall

Category 4

$25,980 AUD pp
Category 4
Cat 4 Deluxe suite with Window #511, 515 - These two suites feature separate sleeping and sitting areas, with a two-seater sofa that looks out a large rectangular window. Beds are configurable. You'll find storage, climate controls, reading lamps, a TV. Modern bathrooms are generously sized with roomy glass-walled shower stall.

Category 5

$31,320 AUD pp
Category 5
Cat 5 Suite with Balcony #501, 503-506, 508 - These spacious suites feature open living areas and sliding glass doors that open to a private French balcony. Beds are configurable, and you'll find sitting chairs or a couch, a writing desk, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. The bathroom is spacious and has a glass-walled shower.

Category 3 Solo

$35,280 AUD pp
Category 3 Solo
Cat 3S Suite with Window #512 - This solo suite features two beds and a large window, plus a bucket chair and small table, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. The bathroom is spacious and has a glass-walled shower.

Category 6

$36,350 AUD pp
Category 6
Cat 6 Owner’s suite with Balcony #502, 507, 509*, 510 - These large, owner's suites feature a balcony (Cabin 509 does not have a balcony), a spacious bathroom with a large shower and separate soaking tub with a window, and a large separate living area with a couch and two bucket chairs, plus climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV.

Category 1

$16,730 AUD pp
Category 1
These cabins feature an oval window and two single beds, two beds that can be converted to a queen-size bed, or a queen size bed (call for details). You'll find an armchair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall.

Category 2

$20,290 AUD pp
Category 2
These roomy cabins feature an oval window and two single beds, two beds that can be converted to a queen-size bed, or a queen size bed (call for details). You'll find an armchair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall.

Category 3

$23,530 AUD pp
Category 3
Cat 3 Suite with Window #401-412, 414-419 These suites have a comfortable sofa in the sitting area with a large window and plenty of storage. They have a variety of bed configurations (call for details) plus a writing desk and chair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Modern bathrooms are generously sized with roomy glass-walled shower stall.

Category 1 Solo

$25,090 AUD pp
Category 1 Solo
These solo cabins feature a window or two portholes, a queen-size bed, writing desk and chair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall

Category 4

$25,980 AUD pp
Category 4
Cat 4 Deluxe suite with Window #511, 515 - These two suites feature separate sleeping and sitting areas, with a two-seater sofa that looks out a large rectangular window. Beds are configurable. You'll find storage, climate controls, reading lamps, a TV. Modern bathrooms are generously sized with roomy glass-walled shower stall.

Category 5

$31,320 AUD pp
Category 5
Cat 5 Suite with Balcony #501, 503-506, 508 - These spacious suites feature open living areas and sliding glass doors that open to a private French balcony. Beds are configurable, and you'll find sitting chairs or a couch, a writing desk, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. The bathroom is spacious and has a glass-walled shower.

Category 3 Solo

$35,280 AUD pp
Category 3 Solo
Cat 3S Suite with Window #512 - This solo suite features two beds and a large window, plus a bucket chair and small table, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. The bathroom is spacious and has a glass-walled shower.

Category 6

$36,350 AUD pp
Category 6
Cat 6 Owner’s suite with Balcony #502, 507, 509*, 510 - These large, owner's suites feature a balcony (Cabin 509 does not have a balcony), a spacious bathroom with a large shower and separate soaking tub with a window, and a large separate living area with a couch and two bucket chairs, plus climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV.

National Geographic Orion

Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition

Length: 103 metres

Passenger Capacity: 102 (in 53 cabins)

Built: 2003 / Refurbished 2014

Engineered for maximum comfort and safety, Orion is equipped with the latest technology including large retractable stabilizers, sonar, radar, and an ice-strengthened hull. A shallow draft plus bow and stern thrusters provide the convenience of being able to maneuver close to shore. 14 Zodiacs ensure quick disembarkation and offer the ideal transport for up-close exploration.

National Geographic Orion meets strict specifications for environmental protection and the on board waste management systems meet the stringent Antarctic operational standards enabling us to travel to the most pristine environments. A host of advanced design features and technology ensures sustainable marine environmental practices.

National Geographic Orion accommodates 102 guests in 53 cabins, including several with balconies. She is spacious and modern, with a variety of public rooms that offer panoramic views of the passing landscape. Friendly and informal, Orion fosters a welcoming atmosphere where like-minded guests share in exceptional experiences and enrichment.

Her public rooms include a dramatic window-lined main lounge, as well as an observation lounge and library perched at the very top of the ship, with plentiful observation decks. The spacious lounge is the heart of our expedition community, and is suited for spirited cocktail hours, informative presentations and our nightly tradition of Recap. In addition, a dedicated theater provides a unique setting for specialist presentations or films and slideshows. Both the main dining room and outside buffet easily accommodate all guests at once for open seating dining. On selected nights, weather permitting, our dining room menu is also available on the outside deck.

While Orion interiors are elegant, life aboard is always casual, with no need for formal clothing. And you’ll find shipboard services like laundry, in-room cabled internet, and public-area wifi.

Cabin layout for National Geographic Orion

Special Offers

• BACK-TO-BACK SAVINGS. Save 10% on any consecutive journeys taken on board one of our expedition ships. This savings is applicable on voyage fares only, and are not valid on extensions or airfare.

• TRAVELING AS A GROUP. Save 5% when traveling as a group of 8 or more people. Take advantage of these great savings, while enjoying traveling with your friends and family. This savings is applicable to voyage fares only, and is not valid on extensions or airfare. Deposit, final payments, and cancellation policies for group travel vary from our regular policies.

• COMBINING OFFERS. Certain offers may be combinable, up to two savings opportunities, except where noted otherwise. For example, travel with a group of 8 or more on back-to-back expeditions, and take advantage of both savings.

Inclusions


• Voyage on board in selected cabin category
• All meals while on board
• Non alcoholic beverages
• Experienced expedition team and leader
• All excursions
• Zodiac and kayak exploration
• Snorkeling, including wetsuits, masks, fins & snorkel where relevant
• Lectures and presentations on board

Exclusions


• International and domestic flights unless otherwise stated
• Travel insurance
• Passport and visa costs if applicable
• Alcoholic beverages on board unless otherwise stated
• Gratuities unless otherwise stated
• Wifi on board
• Any items of a personal nature including laundry
National Geographic Orion
Melanesia Luxury ExpeditionLuxury Expedition
13 Days from
$16,730 AUD pp

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0800 945 3327

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1800 107 715

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