Summary : Following in the wake of early Polynesian navigators, this voyage takes you to the farthest reaches of Oceania. From remote and enigmatic Easter Island, to the historically significant Pitcairn Islands through the “low islands” of the Tuamotu Archipelago to Tahiti, you’ll visit islands that are virtually inaccessible and untouched. Dive or snorkel the stunning reefs of Fakarava, part of a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, and the Pitcairn Islands, identified as one of most unspoiled reef systems in the world. Dive or snorkel the stunning reefs of Fakarava, part of a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, and the Pitcairn Islands, identified as one of most unspoiled reef systems in the world by National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala. Trace the legend of the ill-fated H.M.S. Bounty from Tahiti to Pitcairn Island, where descendants of its mutineers still live today. Explore the unusual geology and wildlife of Henderson Island, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and look for endemic bird species. Delve into the intriguing lost culture of Easter Island, and examine ancient burial sites and towering moai with an archaeologist.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Diving, Hiking, Photography, Snorkeling, Dedicated Solo Cabins, Triple/Quad Cabins
- Free international airfare from select gateways
- Book two or more South Pacific voyages and save 10%
- Offers apply to select dates; may not be combinable; conditions may apply
Receive a FREE DVD chronicle of your trip, compliments of ExpeditionTrips!
$19,520 to $41,510
Depart the U.S. on an overnight flight to Santiago, Chile.
Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel. Join your group for an evening welcome reception.
Early this morning, fly to Easter Island where you will check into your hotel for two nights. Explore volcanic calderas, jagged lava fields, and sweeping grasslands to discover the colossal moai statues, the astonishing legacy of a long-lost culture. Join archaeologists to examine these statues and discuss their meaning and creation; visit burial sites, quarries, and see intricately carved ceremonial altars.
Embark National Geographic Orion on Day 5.
Set sail from Easter Island on your journey west, listening to talks by your experts as you sail for two days. Begin your exploration in Ducie Atoll and spend time watching for frigatebirds and boobies and snorkeling or diving (extra fee to dive) among spectacular reefs. The next stop is the UNESCO World Heritage site of Henderson Island, an uplifted atoll that is uninhabited and virtually untouched by humans. Discover the island’s four endemic bird species, rich flora and fauna, and fascinating geology.
Many of the mutineers of the legendary Bounty made their home on Pitcairn Island in the late 18th century, and about 50 of their descendants still live here today. Meet the residents and hear a few words of the unusual Pitkern dialect—a combination of English “sailor speak” and Polynesian phrases. Visit the gravesite of the last surviving Bounty mutineer, John Adams, and see the Bounty’s anchor, which was salvaged in 1957.
Spend a day at sea scanning the horizon with your naturalists, or relaxing on deck with a good book. Arrive at Mangareva, the largest of the Gambier Islands, with its interesting history and beautiful lagoon. Venture underwater to snorkel or dive (extra fee to dive), meet islanders to learn about their culture and the missionaries who made their home here, or go on a hike with your naturalists.
Begin your exploration of the “Dangerous Archipelago” in Pukarua, where you’ll be greeted by traditional dancers. Navigate reefs and islets during a day at sea and then in true expedition mode, explore one of the uninhabited atolls such as Tahanea. Continue to Fakarava, one of the largest atolls in French Polynesia and part of a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Snorkel the protected reefs or ride the current into the lagoon on a world famous drift dive (extra fee to dive).
Arrive in Papeete, French Polynesia and take a tour before your overnight flight home.
Arrive in the U.S. after an overnight flight from Papeete.
This itinerary is subject to change. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes
Optional Diving Program:
Scuba divers must be certified by an internationally recognized dive association prior to the voyage, and certification cards and logbooks must be shown on board. Please contact us for certification and additional requirements. Due to the remote nature of this expedition, and the inherent risks of diving, we require that you have coverage via the Divers Alert Network (DAN), which among other services provides for evacuation and medical care in the case of a diving emergency. Subject to change.
Lindblad-National Geographic Certified Photo Instructor:
On all departures, a certified photo instructor will be at your side and at your service to inspire and assist you. Take advantage of talks, presentations, slideshows and “laptop gallery” sharing events. All skill and interest levels are welcome; the instructors can meet you wherever you are on your journey. All you need to participate is a camera— point-and-shoot, smartphone, DSLR, whatever—and a sense of adventure. And you’re sure to return home with amazing photos.
Optional Pre- or Post-trip Extension: The Brando, Tetiaroa
Idyllically sited on the atoll of Tetiaroa, The Brando features a level of quality that more than merits its mystique. Built on land Marlon Brando purchased in the 60’s after falling in love with the region and his Tahitian co-star while shooting Mutiny on the Bounty, and inspired by his original vision, it is an exceptional way to start or cap off any of our South Pacific itineraries.
*Two night minimum stay required.
*Private flight required - Air Tetiaroa: From $535 per person, round trip
*Low Season (Apr 1 - Jun 30): From $4,575 per villa per night (including taxes)
*High Season (Jun 30 - Oct 31): From $5,130 per villa per night (including taxes)
Optional Post-trip Extension: InterContinental Moorea Resort & Spa
On the isle of Moorea, volcanic peaks rise from sapphire seas in an explosion of emerald-green splendor, creating an arresting backdrop for a French Polynesian escape. Settle into your waterfront accommodation and enjoy a selection of activities with a complimentary $150 resort credit. Kayak, snorkel, and paddleboard among pristine coral reefs, unwind on white-sand beaches, and explore dense tropical forest where bright hibiscus blooms and rare birds roost. 3 days.
2020 Double Occupancy from $1,410 per person
2020 Single Occupancy from $2,090 single occupancy
Please inquire about different rates for overwater bungalows.
Transfers between airport and ship if booked on group flights; shipboard accommodations; snorkeling, certified photo instructor; video chronicle of your trip; gear on loan (snorkeling gear and wetsuit); all meals onboard ship; most beverages onboard ship; crew gratuities. Subject to change without notice.
Air transportation; passport and visa fees; immigration fees; scuba diving; optional extensions; travel protection plan; items of a personal nature including Internet, laundry, etc; fuel surcharge may apply.
Photos: © Bennett Goldberg