Summary : Set out to discover the wild and mysterious lands of Malaysia and Indonesia. You will discover the town of Sandakan. Located on the island of Borneo, it forms the gateway to the ecotourism destinations of Sabah, such as the Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in Sepilok. After sailing in the Celebes Sea, you will visit the islands of Pulau Saronde and Pulau Lihaga with their picture-postcard settings. This cruise will also take you to the Tangkoko Batuangus Nature Reserve which is home to hundreds of mammals, birds, and species of reptiles and amphibians. Finally L’Austral will chart a course for the Maluku Islands, lying to the south of the Philippines before reaching Darwin, the multicultural capital of the Northern Territory of Australia.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Triple/Quad Cabins
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Although, there isn’t much left of its colonial heritage, the city’s multiple ethnicity will entice you, especially in its food, and in the warm, picturesque abundance that reigns there. Don’t miss a stroll along the city’s busiest promenade, the colorful waterfront before you embark the ship.
Sandakan is a privileged destination for ecotourism. Next to the Sepilok Forest reserve (rehabilitation center for orangutans) this coastal city nestles in the heart of a green paradise sheltering rare and protected fauna. The city gets its reputation from its proximity to the Sepilok sanctuary, the 10,000-hectare reserve dedicated to large apes.
Belonging to the Northern Mollucas, the two rival islands of Ternate and Tidore stand face to face, with the island of Halmahera as referee. But aside from former struggles, these producers of cloves come together on one point: the extreme beauty of their landscapes. As you cross the picturesque fishing ports of Ternate, your gaze will be irresistibly drawn to the spectacular Gamalama volcano that stands in the center or the island. Less frenetic than its neighbor, Tidore, whose view from Ternate is absolutely splendid, invites you to explore its luxuriant nature dominated by Kiematabu and Maitara volcanoes.
In the south of the Moluccas archipelago, in the Banda sea, ten little scattered islands form the Indonesian Banda islands reputed for their production of nutmeg and mace flower. From Neira Island and its capital Banda Neira, you will get an exceptional view of the impressive volcano, Gunung Api, still active today. To discover the island’s historical heritage, you can walk along Banda Neira’s tree-lined streets. After this cultural foray, you can enjoy exploring the marine life in the crystalline waters around the island. Between sea and land, there are treasures everywhere here.
Disembark the vessel after breakfast.
Read this itinerary as a guide only; the exact route and program varies according to weather conditions - and the wildlife you encounter. Flexibility is the key to the success of this expedition. ExpeditionTrips.com is not responsible for itinerary changes.
Bilingual Departures: All departures are French/English.
Meals on board the ship; snorkeling gear (except wetsuits); Captain’s welcome cocktail and gala dinner; coffee, juice, soft drinks and open bar (pouring wines, house champagne, alcohol except premium brands); port taxes; gratuities; luggage transfer from pier to the ship and vice versa; 24 hour room service (special selection); butler service is included for guests staying on Deck 6. Subject to change without notice.
Airfare; any ground services before and/or after the cruise other than the ones included; passport and visa fees; travel and medical insurances; personal expenses such as onboard medical consultations and drug prescriptions, spa, internet, laundry and hair salon; other drinks not included in open bar; fuel surcharge may apply.
Photo Credit: © Eva Robert, © Nathalie Michel, © Lorraine Turci, © Ponant