Sail north aboard Coral Adventurer as we embark on a 16-night expedition through the remote and less visited outer islands of Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands and into the captivating region of Bougainville. Along the way experience striking landscapes, pristine islands and reefs, unique wildlife and small island communities lost in time with rich cultural traditions to share. Climb spectacular Mount Yasur volcano at Tanna Island, followed by an exhilarating dive and snorkel around Nguna Island. Immerse yourself in the vibrant culture of local villages with captivating performances like the women’s Water Dance at Marau Sound, and the famous Snake Dance of Rah Island. Partake in conservation efforts by helping release turtle hatchlings at the Arnarvon Islands, visit historic World War II battle sites and learn about Malaita’s headhunting past. We spend two days in the rarely visited Autonomous Region of Bouganville to explore its cultural and natural wonders and tumultuous history. Our voyage closes in New Britain’s historic Rabaul – learn about the catastrophic eruption of Mount Tavurvur in 1994 and see a view of the harbour from the volcano observatory.


Enjoy the warm Australian hospitality of our crew, learn from our expert guides who share their knowledge, indulge in fresh locally inspired cuisine, and the company of like-minded explorers on this unique and immersive expedition experience.


Highlights


• Witness the power of nature as you gaze into the depths of an active volcano on Tanna Island.

• Discover the hidden gems of Maewo Island, renowned for its pristine waterfalls and sea caves.

• Immerse yourself in Vanuatu’s rich culture with a mesmerising performance of the famous snake dance on Rah.

• Watch the women perform the Water Dance at Marau Sound, and snorkel over colourful coral gardens enriched by the currents of the ‘Tasi Mauri’ or ‘weather coast’.

• Contribute to conservation efforts by releasing turtle hatchlings at the Arnavon Islands.

• Embark on a two-day exploration of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

• Tour the deserted ‘ghost town’ district of Rabaul before journeying to Kokopo, including visits to the war museum and volcano observatory.

 

Board the Coral Adventurer at 3:30pm for a 4:30pm departure. Settle into your cabin and relax as we set sail towards Vanuatu’s outer islands. In the evening, join the Captain for welcome drinks and meet your crew and fellow guests as the sun sets.

 

Your first stop will be the most fertile island in Vanuatu; Tanna Island. Ride a 4WD to the base of active Mt Yasur volcano and enjoy a guided walk with your Expedition Leader to the Caldera’s Rim, witnessing breathtaking views of the volcano’s smoking centre. Engage with the locals to delve deeper into the Tannese culture and unravel the enigma surrounding John Frum Cargo—a revered messenger who prophesied the arrival of prosperity to the island through American forces during World War II, believed to dwell within Mt Yasur.

 

This morning, we make our way to Nguna Island which offers a diverse range of activities, from walks and snorkeling to immersive cultural experiences. Embark on an hour-long trek to Mt Marow or explore the local village to experience their culture. Enjoy a well-earned lunch prepared by our chefs on board before heading out to explore the Nguna-Pele Marine Protected area, showcasing vibrant coral reefs, sea grass beds, mangrove forests, and intertidal lagoons.

 

Malekula is the most culturally and linguistically diverse island of Vanuatu with the primary groups clustered into Big Nambas and Small Nambas. The island’s lush landscapes offer opportunities for adventure, along with its abundant flora and fauna providing a glimpse into its untouched natural beauty. Visit a local village and learn about the unique culture of this island before concluding your visit with a relaxing swim on the beach or snorkel over the stunning reef.

 

Today we head to Maewo, a remarkable island famed for its waterfalls and springs. Enjoy bushwalking, birdwatching and waterfall activities throughout the day before cruising up the spectacular western coastline, with the opportunity to for Xplorer rides to view sea caves.

 

Known for its white sand beaches and coral reefs, Rah is the smallest but most well-known island in the Banks region. Experience the allure of Rah Island, renowned for hosting one of Vanuatu’s most famous cultural dances—the snake dance, which is performed by the men in the village, accompanied by traditional drums and kastom songs. Challenge yourself with an optional guided climb of Mota Lava’s Sleeping Mountain. Your visit to Rah Island promises a unique blend of indigenous artistry and warm hospitality.

 

Enjoy a peaceful day at sea with presentations by our expert Guest Lecturers as we make our way towards Santa Ana in the Solomon Islands. For free time, many guests choose to chat with new-found-friends, read a book from our onboard library, browse the art gallery or simply enjoy gazing out to sea.

 

Embark on a cultural adventure at Santa Ana, a small island southeast of San Cristobal, known for its distinctive bone fishhooks and creative fishing floats. Upon arrival, receive a warm welcome from locals, greeted by village warriors wielding swords and blowing conch shell horns. Explore the island’s lush landscapes on a guided walk led by a naturalist, traversing shady forests adorned with vibrant orchids, before taking to the water for snorkelling opportunities.

 

Spend today exploring the stunning Marau Sound, a haven protected by five marine reserves. It is a geographical crossroad separating Guadalcanal’s calm northern waters from its Tasi Mauri or ‘weather coast’. Start your day with the option to snorkel or kayak in the turquoise waters. In the afternoon, visit a village on Marapa Island known for its famous water dancers. Choose from walking options leading to waterfalls, perfect for spotting rainforest wildlife. Divers are treated to an incredible wall dive, while snorkelers enjoy diverse marine experiences. Relax on a sand cay where locals offer shelter, umbrellas, and coconut drinks- a perfect way to end your day.

 

Step ashore to experience the diverse landscapes of Malaita, the Solomons’ most populous island, marked by its involvement in the ‘Tension’ dispute from 1998 to 2003. The ‘saltwater people’ of the lagoons live on small artificial islands built up on sand bars, where they were forced to flee from the headhunters. Visit Langa Langa Lagoon or Auki to learn about their culture and headhunting history. Later in the day, there will be opportunity for snorkelling in the lagoon.

 

Explore the World War II history of Russell Islands, where the unopposed occupation by US forces was one of the first steps in the Allied advance along the Solomon Islands. The island’s abundant coconut plantations are now the largest on any Pacific Island. This is a great spot for snorkelling and diving: the sea floor is littered with World War II wreckage. Listen to a ‘bamboo band’ performance during a visit to a local village.

 

Spend the day exploring the Arnavon Islands marine reserve, home to the largest rookery of endangered Hawksbill Turtles in the South Pacific Region. In 1995 the US based Nature Conservancy helped three local communities come together to create the Arnavon Community Marine Conservation area – it was the first protected area to be established within the Solomons and covers over 40,000 acres of land and sea.  Later in the day, travel ashore at Kerehikapa Island and see the magical moment of turtle hatchlings emerging from their nests.

 

Choiseul Bay, in Choiseul Island’s northwest, is our last stop in the Solomon Islands. In this beautiful bay surrounded by mountains, we will make our way to Taro Island which is known to be the oldest known site of agriculture in the Pacific. The island is also known for its white sandy beaches where you can further enjoy water activities.

 

Cruise in the wake of French explorer Louis-Antoine de Bougainville, along the coastline of the island he named after himself in 1768 – nevermind that Melanesian and Austronesian people had populated the island for many millennia prior. The region has two main islands, Bougainville being mountainous, and Buka largely characterized by flat terrain. Tourism within its verdant rainforests remains minimal and untouched, safeguarding its pristine natural allure.

We explore islands by snorkelling, and delve into mainland sites of historical significance. Engage with the locals in a country where 21 different languages are spoken, reflecting the rich cultural diversity of this region.

 

Before a volcanic eruption devastated it in 1994, Rabaul served as the provincial capital of New Britain province. It was a key Japanese stronghold during the war, housing 110,000 troops by 1943. Extensive tunnel networks were constructed for shelter from allied air raids, along with barracks and support facilities. Tour the abandoned ‘ghost town’ area of Rabaul and surrounds: see the ruins of Rabaul, the hot springs and Mount Tavurvur, World War II bunkers and the famous Rabaul Volcano Observatory. option to embark on an ascent of Mount Tavurvur Volcano, while snorkeling excursions around the Duke of York Islands await those seeking underwater adventures.

 

Disembark at 08:00am and join a tour of Kokopo, including the township, war museum and bustling markets. Finish with lunch and time to relax at the Rapopo Plantation Resort before being transferred to the airport for your charter flight to Cairns.

Note: post-cruise tour is only included for those passengers that have booked the charter flight.

This itinerary is an indication of the destinations we visit and activities on offer. Throughout the expedition we may make changes to the itinerary as necessary to maximise your expeditionary experience. Allowances may be made for seasonal variations, weather, tidal conditions, and any other event that may affect the operation of the vessel. Coral Expeditions suggests that you do not arrive on the day of embarkation or depart on the day of disembarkation due to any changes that may occur in scheduling.

CORAL DECK STATEROOM

$17,390 AUD pp
CORAL DECK STATEROOM
Coral Deck Staterooms are located below the Promenade Deck and furnished with a junior King size bed which can be separated into two singles. A wardrobe, desk and armchair are included. The compact ensuite has a toilet, shower and ample storage. A porthole window gives you views of the world outside. Coral Deck Staterooms are 17 square metres

PROMENADE DECK STATEROOM

$20,690 AUD pp
PROMENADE DECK STATEROOM
Promenade Deck Staterooms are located below the Explorer Deck and are furnished with a junior King size bed which can be separated into two singles. A wardrobe, desk and armchair are included. The compact ensuite has a toilet, shower and ample storage. A large picture window gives you wide views of the world outside. Promenade Deck Staterooms are 17 square metres

EXPLORER DECK BALCONY STATEROOM

$27,090 AUD pp
EXPLORER DECK BALCONY STATEROOM
Our Explorer Deck staterooms are located below the Bridge Deck and are comfortably furnished with a junior King size bed which can be separated into two singles. A wardrobe, desk and armchair are included. The compact ensuite has a toilet, shower and ample storage. Your private balcony has seating for two from which to view the passing coastal vistas. Explorer Deck Balcony Staterooms are 21.4 square metres

BRIDGE DECK BALCONY STATEROOM

$29,590 AUD pp
BRIDGE DECK BALCONY STATEROOM
Our two Bridge Deck staterooms are comfortably furnished with a junior King size bed which can be separated into two singles. A wardrobe, desk and armchair are included. The compact ensuite has a toilet, shower and ample storage. French windows opening to a balcony with seating for two gives you a private perch to watch the panorama unfold outside. These staterooms are located on the bridge deck with superb views and adjacent to the Cairns and Darwin suites. Bridge Deck Balcony Staterooms are 21.4 square metres

BRIDGE DECK BALCONY SUITE

$37,790 AUD pp
BRIDGE DECK BALCONY SUITE
Our two Cairns and Darwin suites are spacious and elegant retreats after a busy day ashore. Suites are equipped with a lounge area, minibar and personal coffee machine. They have a spacious super King-sized bed. The 8 square metre private balcony has an outdoor daybed and lounge chair for two. A unique outside-facing bathroom with picture windows, bath and separate shower complete the suite experience. The complimentary minibar is replenished daily. Bridge Deck Balcony Suites are 55.8 square metres.

Vessel Type: Expedition Ship

Length: 93.4 meters

Passenger Capacity: 120 (60 staterooms)

Built: 2019

Designed and built to be the most modern tropical expedition ship afloat, Coral Adventurer debuted in April 2019. She features comfortable Australian interiors, Xplorer tender mechanism, intimate guest experience, and personalized service.

EXPEDITION CAPABILITIES

> Two trademark Xplorer tenders seat all passengers for shore excursions

> Six zodiacs for more intrepid exploration

> Lecture lounge with multimedia for daily expedition briefings and presentations

> Small on-board Library

> Shallow draft and advanced navigation and propulsion systems

MARINE IMMERSION

> Navigator lounge in the bridge giving a vantage point of ship operations

> Over 1000 sq m of open deck space including a wrap-around promenade deck with panoramic views

> Engine room tours and high level of crew interaction with guests

> Barralong Room for hosting scientific research or exhibitions

FOOD AND WINE FEATURES

> Communal ‘wine table’

> Galley viewing window

> Multiple indoor and outdoor bars, including our Explorer bar on the Vista Deck

> Curated wine cellar featuring boutique wines and exceptional vintage Australian reds.

GUEST COMFORT

> All outside-facing guest cabins with en-suite bathrooms; majority have private balcony

> Active stabilisers

> Gym

> Passenger elevator

> Wi-Fi available in all guest areas

Cabin layout for Coral Adventurer

Inclusions


• All excursions with our Expedition Team
• Use of Xplorer, Zodiacs and Kayaks
• Snorkelling & SCUBA equipment (SCUBA diving at an additional cost)
• Daily lectures and briefings with Guest Lecturers
• All meals, chef-prepared on board
• Captain’s welcome and farewell events, and open bridge access
• Selected wines, selected beers and house spirits, juices, and soft drinks served with lunch and dinner
• 24-hour barista-style coffee and tea station
• All entrance fees to National Parks, ports, traditional owner fees and charges imposed by governing authorities
• Tips and gratuities
• Use of all onboard facilities, incl. a reference library
• Your expedition photos captured during the voyage
• Post-cruise transfers
• Wifi Access – Standard speed connectivity enabling email, social image sharing, web browsing and messaging
• Pre and post cruise flights/charter flights

Exclusions


• Pre-cruise transfers
• Pre and post cruise flights/charter flights
• Pre and post cruise accommodation
• Travel Insurance
• SCUBA Diving (view Scuba diving rates)
• Entry visas & travel permits for the country you are travelling to/from
• Alcoholic drinks (including beer and wine) outside of lunch and dinner service
• Laundry service (available at a cost)
• Items of a personal nature such souvenir purchases
• Optional Extras (in some destinations)
Coral Adventurer
Melanesia ExpeditionExpedition
17 Days from
$1,023 AUD per day

or call us on

NZ Freephone
0800 945 3327

AUS Freephone
1800 107 715

to help you make your reservation

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