Melanesia Cruise

Come aboard the Coral Discoverer on a 13-night South Pacific expeditionary adventure combining New Caledonia, Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea and discover for yourself the most diverse traditional cultures and stunning natural scenery found in today’s Oceania.

Day 1

Noumea and Casey Island

Boarding commences at 9:00 am for a 10:00 am departure. Meet fellow travelers and enjoy lunch while cruising towards New Caledonia’s Casey Island. Travel ashore and relax on the spectacular beach, or venture into the shallows just meters from the beach for a first Melanesian snorkeling experience. Tonight, join the Captain and his crew for the Captain’s Welcome Aboard Cocktails.

Day 2

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Lifou Island Tour

Lifou Island’s impressive beaches are amongst the best in the world, backed by sparkling lagoons and pine tree covered landscapes. Join the Expedition Leader on a walk across the island, stopping to take in the views of beautiful bays and old churches. Lifou offers sensational snorkeling with a panorama of sealife unsullied by man.

Day 3

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Vanuatu and Tanna Island

Crossing into Vanuatu approach Tanna Island and see hot springs bubbling beneath the surface, the first signs of volcanic activity. After landing at Port Resolution, named by Captain Cook in 1774 in honor of his ship HMS Resolution, go ashore to a friendly welcome from the locals. Join the Expedition Leader and naturalists on a scenic drive through the rainforest and up the slopes of Mount Yasur. Admire the fantastic views of this active volcano which still regularly spews sparks, rocks and ash.

Day 4

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Malekula Island and South West Bay

Land at South West Bay on Malekula Island, the second largest island in Vanuatu. Malekula art and ritual objects are among the finest in the country and the island is famous for the complex ceremonies and rituals preserved by two of its remarkable tribes, the Big Nambas and the Small Nambas. Anchor at the Maskelyne Islands and enjoy the opportunity for snorkeling and glass bottom boat tours.

Day 5

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Champagne Beach and Rainforest

Champagne Beach is located on the largest island in Vanuatu, Espiritu Santo. The jewel of Vanuatu, enjoy the splendor of magnificent Champagne Beach with a day full of fantastic swimming, snorkeling and glass bottom boat tours. Join a Dive Instructor for a dive over the corals and participate in a guided walk with local guides through the rainforest to the popular swimming spot ‘Blue Hole', or simply relax on the white sands of this magnificent beach.

Day 6

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Ureparapara Island & Kastom Dancing

Welcome to the tropical archipelago of Vanuatu, fondly known as the 'Happy Islands'. Ureparapara is one of the most spectacular islands in the South Pacific. Imagine cruising into the cone of a volcano surrounded on three sides by 300 meter cliffs. The only way to experience this island is by sea, and visits from cruise ships are rare. After traveling ashore to the village, be entertained by the local people with dancing, before joining a guided walk to the top of the caldera for fantastic views across the island and great photography opportunities.

Day 7

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Solomon Islands and Nendo Island

Nendo Island is the final port of call in the Solomon Islands and an excellent location to view and purchase quality handmade Melanesian artifacts. Enjoy cultural performances and another opportunity to snorkel over the pristine coral reefs.

Day 8

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Santa Ana Island

The locals of Santa Ana, a small island southeast of San Cristobal, welcome the ship ashore with village warriors bearing swords and blowing on conch shell horns. Santa Ana is known for its bone fishhooks and imaginative fishing floats. Enjoy a cultural performance and join the naturalist for a guided walk across the island, through shady forests where a myriad of colorful orchids grow. Alternatively, join the Dive Instructor to dive or snorkel the surrounding reef.

Day 9

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Mangalonga Island and Resort

Anchor off picturesque Mangalonga Island and savor a full day of in-water activities. Join a snorkel, SCUBA diving or glass bottom boat tour before traveling ashore to Maravagi Resort where there is time to explore on a guided nature walk.

Day 10

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Arnavon Islands and Dart Sound

The Arnavon Islands are the only marine reserve in the Solomon Islands where, except for subsistence gathering, all marine life is protected and fishing is banned. The islands are home to endangered wildlife including the beautiful Hawksbill Turtle. Travel ashore to see how the conservation efforts are helping rejuvenate the island before enjoying snorkeling and glass bottom boat tours. This afternoon board Xplorer for a cruise up Dart Sound to the remote village of Kia.

Day 11

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Ghizo and Kennedy Island

Visit Gizo, the small provincial capital of Ghizo Island. Explore the open air markets, replete with artifacts and wood carvings or join a hike to the lookout for panoramic views across the lagoon and islands. Keen birdwatchers should keep an eye out for the white-bellied graybird, whiskered tree swift or colorful lorikeets native to the remote Solomon Islands. Later, board the Xplorer and head ashore to tiny Kennedy Island, named in honour of John F Kennedy, who swam ashore to the island with his crew after his boat PT-109 was sunk by a Japanese destroyer during WWII.

Day 12

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Laughlan Islands

Laughlan Islanders specialize in canoe building and in this very remote corner of eastern Papua New Guinea find seagoing canoes under construction. Be welcomed by the friendly villagers of Bodaluna while the Guest Lecturers and naturalists explain the islander’s subsistence gardening, fishing and participation in the Kula Ring of trading. Enjoy an afternoon snorkel or an adventurous dive on the outer reef to view turtles, wrasses and spinner dolphins in the warm, clear waters.

Day 13

  • Ship
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Egum Atoll and Yanaba Island

Prepare for an unforgettable experience as the Xplorer, with Guest Lecturers and guides, travels ashore to Yanaba Island. There is ample time for snorkeling, diving and glass bottom boat tours over the stunning coral reef system.

Day 14

  • Breakfast


Arrive in historic Alotau and say farewell to new-found friends before disembarking at approximately 9:00 am.

Solo Travelers:
A 50% single supplement is charged or select the “twin share” program. Book a cabin at the posted fare and the Coral Discoverer will attempt to match you with another solo traveler of the same gender. If not possible, enjoy the sole use of the cabin at the twin share price.

Important Fare Information:
Rates are posted based off of the current exchange rates from Australian or New Zealand Dollars. Please contact us for current exchange rates.

This itinerary is an indication of the destinations visited and activities on offer. Whilst every effort will be made to follow this itinerary the Coral Discoverer reserves the right to vary this itinerary to make allowances for weather, tidal conditions and any other reason whatsoever.

Cruise fare includes:
Accommodation charges on board, services of expedition staff including lectures, briefings, slide/film presentations, and other group activities; group transfers during the cruise; all meals; 24 hour tea/coffee station; landing fees.

Cruise fare excludes:
Pre and Post flights and transfers; personal items such as telephone, facsimile charges, laundry, bar charges, travel insurance.

Important Fare Information: Cruise fare is posted based off of current exchange rates with the Australian Dollar. Please contact us for current rates.
South Pacific, Papua New Guinea, Laughlin Islands, Ghizo Island, Kennedy Island, Santa Ana Island, Alotau, Noumea, Lifou Island, Tanna Island, Ureparapara Island, Nendo Island, Arnavon Islands, Malekula, Champagne, Mangalonga Island, Yanaba Island
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