Following in the wake of Captain Cook, journey from New Zealand’s North Island to the Solomon Sea. Delve into a fascinating history of explorers, convicts, and traders, and learn about the rich cultures of the Māori and the Melanesians. Examine traditional carved houses and ancient caves and meet villagers on some of the most remote islands of the South Pacific. Along the way, don your snorkel and fins to discover incredible coral reefs and lagoons.


Highlights


• Encounter an impressive diversity of cultures from the Māori of the Bay of Islands to the spear dancers of the Solomons, and delve into their artistic and spiritual traditions

• Venture to the former penal colony of Norfolk Island, now a UNESCO World Heritage site boasting the unusual trees called Norfolk Island pines

• Visit the island nation of New Caledonia, made up of immaculate beaches and steep coral cliffs, and hike into the tropical forest to a vanilla plantation or enjoy world-class snorkeling among diverse coral species

• Visit World War II sites from the Battle of Guadalcanal, including an optional dive on the wreck of the S.S. President Coolidge

• See the traditional canoes of the people of Utupua and take a Zodiac ride along their mangrove-studded lagoon

Arrive in Auckland, New Zealand, where we check into our hotel. Join us for a welcome briefing this evening to meet your fellow travelers.

Have breakfast at the hotel before joining a tour of this vibrant city center. We’ll stop for lunch midday before embarking National Geographic Orion in the late afternoon. (B,L,D)

The Bay of Islands is an area encompassing more than 140 subtropical islands, boasting an abundance of wildlife and fascinating history. Visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, a place of immeasurable cultural, spiritual, and historical significance, and learn of the historical events for which these grounds are remembered. (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)

Explore Norfolk Island, discovered by Captain Cook in 1774. Covered in dense forests of pines, it was initially valued as a ready source of shipbuilding lumber. Later, it became a British penal colony and then a settlement for Pitcairn Islanders, who themselves were descendants of the mutineers from the famous Bounty. Explore the ruins of the prison and enjoy walking around the main settlement at Burnt Pine. Later, take a long nature hike in Norfolk National Park to look for the endemic tree ferns and land birds. As we depart, look for large groups of seabirds alongside the dramatic island scenery. (B,L,D)

Relax on deck as we make our passage to Melanesia or attend talks by our expert expedition and photo teams. (B,L,D)

Visit this vibrant French overseas territory and swim in the world's largest enclosed lagoon, included in the UNESCO World Heritage List for its outstanding beauty, unique geography, and incredible coral diversity. Alternatively, join our naturalists for a birding walk through the dense canopy of the forest.

Clear into Vanuatu at Port Vila. Later, arrive at Moso and spend the day snorkeling or diving at one of the most incredible locations you will experience on this voyage. The crystal clear waters reveal colorful corals, sea turtles, eagle and cowtail rays, reef fish, and pelagics. Dugongs and dolphins can sometimes be encountered here as well.

Ambyrm is known for its active volcanoes, blacksand 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)

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, or enjoy a serene canoe paddle to the Riri Blue Hole, a jewel-blue freshwater source surrounded by jungle. (B,L,D)

Arrive to the small village of Loh Island by Zodiac, meandering along a beautiful mangrove lagoon. Meet the lovely villagers and experience some of the local kastom dances. Hike across the island to a cave and look for wildlife along the way. If conditions permit, snorkel in along the beautiful fringing reef of the island. (B,L,D)

Visit Fenualoa, which is part of the Reef Islands in the northwestern province of Temotu. On shore we will be greeted by the local islanders and enjoy a tour of their village before snorkeling or swimming in the brilliant blue waters of the reef.

Located in the Santa Cruz Island group, Utupua is a high volcanic island surrounded by a lagoon and a fringing coral reef. Zodiac to the village of Nimbau for a welcome song and dance performance. Take a walk through the village with the locals and see a display of their fantastic fishing canoes. Take a Zodiac ride along the shores, lined with dense mangroves and boasting a variety of wildlife. (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)

Our expedition concludes in Honiara, a former U.S. supply depot and a strategic World War II battleground. Tour around the outskirts of the city to see sites well known from the Battle of Guadalcanal in 1942–1943. 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 place. Then transfer to the airport for our flight to Brisbane, where we overnight at a local hotel.

Depart this morning for your flight home. (B)

Itineraries are subject to change.

Category 3

$22,620 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 6

$34,950 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 5

$30,100 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 4

$24,970 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 1

$16,080 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

$19,510 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 1 Solo

Sold Out
 
Please contact Wild Earth for alternative options or to waitlist.

Category 3 Solo

Sold Out
 
Please contact Wild Earth for alternative options or to waitlist.

Category 4

$26,480 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 2

$20,690 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 1

$17,060 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 5

$31,900 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 6

$37,050 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 3 Solo

$35,970 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 3

$23,980 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

Sold Out
 
Please contact Wild Earth for alternative options or to waitlist.

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

NEW YEAR, NEW PERSPECTIVES: AUD$2,500 CREDIT

Book by March 13, 2024. Receive a credit of AUD$2,500 per person, deducted from cabin fare prior to any additional applicable savings with the purchase of cabin fare. Valid for new bookings only on select departures, subject to availability, not applicable on airfare or extensions, and may not be combined with other offers. Call for details. Prices online do not show the discounted rates.

NEW YEAR, NEW PERSPECTIVES: 30% SOLO SAVINGS

Book by March 13, 2024. Save 30% on solo cabins on select departures. Not applicable on airfare or extensions and may not be combined with other offers. Call for details. Prices online do not show the discounted rates.

NEW YEAR, NEW PERSPECTIVES: ADDITIONAL 10% SAVINGS WHEN YOU PAY IN FULL

Book by March 13, 2024. Save an additional 10% on the cabin fare when you pay in full at time of booking. Valid for new bookings only on select departures, subject to availability, not applicable on airfare or extensions, and may not be combined with other offers. To qualify for the discount, nonrefundable payment in full is due at the time of booking. Call for details. Prices online do not show the discounted rates.

SUITE EXCLUSIVES

Spacious living areas and incredible views immerse you in the beauty of your marine surroundings. Our new Suite Exclusives package helps make your voyage all the more memorable.

BAR TAB & CREW TIPS INCLUDED

Your bar tab and tips to the ship’s crew on all departures aboard National Geographic Endurance, National Geographic Resolution, National Geographic Orion, National Geographic Explorer, Sea Cloud, and Sea Cloud II are included in your fare. Bar tab excludes certain super premium brands, which are available for sale. Call for details.

10% OFF BACK-TO-BACK VOYAGES

Save 10% on consecutive departures, applicable on voyage fares only and not valid on extensions or airfare. Valid for new bookings only, subject to availability, and may not be combined with other offers. Call for details.

SAVE 5% TRAVELING AS A GROUP

Save 5% when traveling as a group of eight or more people. Valid on voyage fares only and not applicable on extensions or airfare. Deposit, final payments, and cancellation policies for group travel vary from our regular policies. Valid for new bookings only, subject to availability, and may not be combined with other offers. Call for details.

BRINGING THE KIDS

We believe sharing an expedition with your kids or grandkids is a life-enhancing experience. So take $625 off for each child under the age of 18.

COMBINING OFFERS

Combine now and save!

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


• Excursions, hotels, and airport transfers, as indicated in the itinerary 
• Selection of exploration tools curated to your destination, such as Zodiacs and glass-bottom boats, stand-up paddleboards, kayaks, snorkeling equipment (including wetsuits, masks, and fins), and other state-of-the-art gear
• Guidance and company of our leading expedition staff 
• All meals as indicated in the itinerary, both aboard and onshore. Meals are inspired by regional cuisine and locally sourced where possible.
• Hors d’oeuvres inspired by regional cuisine and locally sourced where possible
• 24-hour access to snacks, premium coffees and teas, non-alcoholic beverages, and filtered water
• Beer, wine, cocktails, and spirits aboard the NG Endurance, NG Resolution, NG Explorer, NG Orion, NG Endeavour II, NG Islander II, Sea Cloud, Sea Cloud II, Lord of the Glens, and The Jahan. We are also pleased to offer a selection of super premium wines and liquors, available for purchase.
• Beer and wine, spirits and cocktails on all 2024 departures aboard NG Venture, NG Quest, NG Sea Bird, and NG Sea Lion, and specialty cocktails with meals aboard Delfin ll, with super premium wines and liquors available for purchase.
• Crew gratuities aboard NG Endurance, NG Resolution, NG Explorer,  NG Orion, Sea Cloud, Sea Cloud II, Lord of the Glens, Oberoi Philae, and The Jahan
• Free Wi-Fi aboard Lord of the Glens and The Jahan.
• Free Wi-Fi, up to one hour a day per person, aboard NG Islander II and NG Endeavour II 
• Presentations on your destination by expedition staff and expert guest speakers
• Complimentary reusable water bottle to fill at onboard water refill stations
• The services of a physician, physician’s assistant, nurse practitioner, or paramedic 
• Morning stretch classes and 24-hour access to exercise equipment where available 
• 24-hour access to lounges, observation decks, library stocked with regionally relevant literature, and other shared spaces 
• Complimentary Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic parka or jacket on select Arctic and Antarctic voyages
• Assistance by the onboard NG Photography Expert (NG Endurance, NG Explorer, NG Orion, NG Resolution) and Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic certified photo instructor (all ships)
• Access to the OM System Photo Gear Locker with the latest gear to try out on loan (all Lindblad-National Geographic ships except in Galapagos)
• Park and site entrance fees, special access permits, and port taxes

Exclusions


• Airfare (except flights when indicated as included), pre- and post-expedition extensions, additional hotel nights, and private transfers
• Travel protection plans and passport, visa, and immigration fees 
• Laundry, spa treatments, scuba diving, Wi-Fi, and phone services (except when indicated as included)
• Crew gratuities aboard NG Endeavour II, NG Islander II, NG Venture, NG Quest, NG Sea Bird, NG Sea Lion, and Delfin II
National Geographic Orion
French Polynesia Luxury ExpeditionLuxury Expedition
16 Days from
$16,080 AUD pp

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0800 945 3327

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1800 107 715

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