Beyond the typical Polynesian paradise, one may delve deeper, to find aquamarine lagoons affording the world’s most dazzling snorkeling and diving, an intriguing Easter Island tour and the sky-piercing volcanoes of the Marquesas.
• Photograph the exquisite Marquesas with their sky-piercing volcanoes, lushly-carpeted canyons, and chiseled bays.
• View Easter Island’s giant volcanic stone statues, or moai—representing deified ancestors, oral traditions suggest they ‘walked’ from the quarry to their stone platforms along the coastline.
• Meet the residents of tiny Pitcairn Island; most are direct descendants of the HMS Bounty crew.
• Visit Henderson and Ducie Islands, home to rare and endemic bird species, from Murphy’s and Phoenix petrels to the Henderson Island crake and Stephen’s lorikeet.
• Enjoy excellent snorkeling and diving nearly every day to discover healthy reefs teeming with colorful, tropical fish.
Arrive in Papeete and transfer to our hotel.
Relax during a morning at leisure, then join a tour of Papeete, the capital of French Polynesia’s largest island. Pass by orchards of papaya as you drive along the stunning coast. Visit the renowned Museum of Tahiti, which traces the islands’ history. Embark the Island Sky this afternoon.
Though remote and sparsely populated, the far-flung Tuamotus comprise the world’s largest atoll chain. These venerable coral constructions rise just high enough above the water to be called land, and if it weren’t for their waving coconut palms, they might be entirely invisible from any distance.
With few visitors, and little industry, the dazzling lagoon of Apataki offers a pristine underwater landscape for snorkelers and divers to explore.
Attend informative lectures today as the Island Sky cruises towards the legendary Marquesas Islands.
Considered one of the most beautiful island groups in the South Pacific, the Marquesas lie farther from a continental coast than any other islands in the world. Unlike other Polynesian islands, the Marquesas have no surrounding reefs or placid lagoons. Their wide, deep bays are havens for vessels such as ours.
Spend three days exploring this dazzling collection of islands whose breathtaking vertical peaks reach into the clouds, while carpets of lush tropical vegetation drape cliffs and canyons that descend to sea-sculpted bays. Countless sooty, fairy, and bridled terns circle tiny, rocky pinnacle islets. Zodiacs bring you ashore on a variety of islands, to be greeted by dancers and drummers adorned in leis and tapa cloth. On walks you may see petroglyphs or tiki figures—representing deified ancestors—flanked by banyan trees, fragrant plumeria, blooming orchids, and silvery waterfalls. Open-air craft markets display baskets, shell jewelry, and wooden carvings. Birders search for the endemic Nuku Hiva pigeon and Marquesan swiftlet. Though the islands lack fringing reefs, snorkelers and divers will discover colorful fish against a backdrop of sheer walls and dramatic arches.
Delightful music and dancing welcomes you to this idyllic island—the first land sighted in the Pacific by Europeans. Visit the small village whose residents raise taro, bananas, and coconut palms for copra (dried coconut). Birders search for Pacific reef-heron while snorkelers and divers explore the fringing reef.
Coconut palms and breadfruit trees cover the beautiful islets that surround Puka Rua’s lagoon. Garland-bedecked dancers greet you in the tiny village whose 150 hospitable inhabitantsearn a living selling copra. Witness the process of coconut drying, visit a local crafts market, or stroll along the lagoon’s shores watching crested terns circling overhead.
Today, conditions permitting, explore one of the many uninhabited Tuamotu Islands and enjoy swimming, snorkeling, or diving.
Spend a day at sea as the ship continues towards the remote Pitcairn Islands. Join naturalists on deck to search for a variety of seabirds and marine mammals.
Remote, enchanting, and tiny at six miles around, volcano-crowned Pitcairn was the fabled hideout of the HMS Bounty mutineers in 1790. Step ashore and visit with the 50 hospitable inhabitants of Adamstown, who are the direct descendants of the nine mutineers and 18 Polynesians. The anchor of the Bounty rests beside the courthouse and the ship’s Bible resides in the church.
Sheer limestone cliffs surround this elevated coralline island, a World Heritage Site, pockmarked by caves and blowholes. Henderson’s astounding natural selection has produced ten endemic flowering plants and four endemic species of land birds, including the Henderson Island crake and Stephen’s lorikeet. There will also be an opportunity to snorkel or dive in the marinelife-rich waters.
This small, uninhabited, and rarely-visited atoll is rimmed in white sand beaches that in turn surround a crystalline lagoon. As you walk along the shore, witness a vast variety of seabirds—tens of thousands nest here, including Murphy’s and Phoenix petrels, masked boobies, frigatebirds, and red-tailed tropicbirds. Underwater forays bring you face-to-face with legions of rainbow-hued fish in the warm, clear waters.
Relax on deck and enjoy the ongoing lecture series as you cruise toward Easter Island, a World Heritage Site and one of the most mysterious places on earth.
Spend two full days exploring Easter Island. View the intriguing stone heads, moai, built on massive stone platforms at Tahai, along with nearly 400 monolithic statues in various states of completion at the spectacular volcanic tuff quarries. Visit the ceremonial center of Ahu Vinapu where the island’s only female moai was found. At Ahu Tongariki visit the largest ceremonial site in Polynesia—a five-year archaeological restoration project was completed in 1996. Drive to the Rano Kau volcano to view the giant caldera, home to a sprawling lake dotted with small floating reed islets, and the ceremonial village of Orongo, dedicated to the fascinating “birdman” cult.
After breakfast disembark the Island Sky and enjoy a short tour before heading to the airport for your flight back home.
Based on the expeditionary nature of our trips, there may be ongoing enhancements to this itinerary.
Ocean-view suite, averaging 230 square feet, located on the Magellan Deck with sitting area, private bathroom, and two to four portholes. Bed can be configured as two twins or one queen.
Ocean-view suite, averaging 240 square feet, located on the Columbus Deck with sitting area, private bathroom, and large picture window. Bed can be configured as two twins or one queen.
Category 2 Special Single Rate
Ocean-view suite, averaging 225 square feet, located on the Marco Polo Deck with sitting area, private bathroom, and large picture window. Bed can be configured as two twins or one queen.
Category 3 Special Single Rate
Ocean-view suite, averaging 240 square feet, located on the Marco Polo Deck with sitting area, private bathroom, and large picture window. Bed can be configured as two twins or one queen.
Ocean-view suite, averaging 270 square feet, located on the Erikson Deck with sitting area, private bathroom, and patio doors leading to private balcony. Bed can be configured as two twins or one queen.
Ocean-view suite, averaging 325 square feet, located on the Explorer Deck with sitting area, private bathroom, and patio doors leading to private balcony. Bed can be configured as two twins or one queen.
Vessel Type: Luxury Small Ship
Length: 90 metres
Passenger Capacity: 116
Built / refurbished: 1992 / 2010 / 2017
Sister ship to Hebridean Sky. Island Sky and Hebridean Sky are truly sisters. Built in the same Italian Shipyard, both boast spacious, well-appointed suites, stylish common areas, and redundant core technology that allows them to operate smoothly, even under the most challenging of conditions. Both ships are all-suite, all-inclusive small expedition vessels with touches of elegance throughout. The Island Sky is scheduled for additional upgrades in 2017, including the addition of tinted sliding glass doors to all cabins on the Promenade Deck.
Complimentary Wine or Beer with Dinner
Complimentary Coffee/Tea station
On-board MD and Facilities
Dedicated Passenger Service Manager
Pre-voyage hotel night
Complimentary Expedition Jacket
Elevator serving all passenger decks
Upgraded WIFI Internet
Library with computers
Panoramic Top Deck Observation Platform
Bar/Lounge with Live Entertainment
Lounge with Audiovisual Facilities
DVD Movie Library
Tinted sliding glass doors in all cabins on the Promenade Deck
Great expeditions require great food! Our team of world-class chefs offer breakfast, lunch and dinner menus that change daily. They have boat-loads of creativity, so you are sure to experience a variety of remarkable cuisine throughout your voyage.
All Suites Feature:
Your choice of queen-sized or two twin-sized beds
Sitting area with sofa and side chair
Flat Screen TV with DVD/CD player
Independent temperature controls
Marble-appointed bathroom with fine toiletries
220 square feet or more
Sofa can be converted to bed for third person
PLEASE NOTE - DECK PLANS CAN VARY.
2019 Voyages with No Single Supplement
Solo Travelers: On select small-ship cruises, we are offering a limited number of staterooms in select categories with no solo supplement. No solo supplement promotion is not combinable with any other offer.
Please contact us for more details and to inquire about availability.