The name Polynesia means ‘many islands’ and no one could argue with the suitability of this title. There are islands of low lying coral with some of the most beautiful beaches in the world and contrasting volcanic mountainous structures of lush, incomparable beauty.
Join us for Christmas and New Year in paradise on a leisurely passage through the South Seas to an area long associated with Captain Cook, Captain Bligh and the Bounty, and Gauguin. We can promise you an unforgettable voyage to a corner of the world which has lured adventurers and romantics alike ever since Magellan first sailed to these waters in 1521.
Of course the real age of European exploration did not take place until the 18th century and many of the islands we will visit have changed little since that time. Their sheer isolation has been their saving grace and apart from an influx of missionaries in the late 19th century, western culture has made few inroads into most of the islands. The natural beauty of these islands is mesmerizing. From coral reefs teeming with life to powerful legends that shaped history, each island is unique, each culture distinct. On the more remote islands, villages are still composed of thatched houses, set amongst the shade of the breadfruit and coconut trees. Many islands are important nesting grounds for seabirds and sea turtles and the lagoons everywhere are breeding grounds for countless species of fish.
We embark our vessel, the MS Caledonian Sky, in Easter Island. Lying some 2300 miles off the coast of Chile, it is the most remote inhabited island in the world. Easter Island, a tiny volcanic triangle was aptly named ‘Navel of the World’ by its early settlers. Surrounded by the vast Pacific, over 1,200 miles from the nearest inhabited land, the island is an archaeological treasure.
From here our island hopping adventure begins. Highlights of our cruise are numerous, but for many it will be the Pitcairn Islands, final destination of the Bounty. Here we are lucky enough to spend Christmas day on Pitcairn Island itself. We continue through the beautiful Tuamotu archipelago. With our fleet of Zodiac landing craft we can explore inlets, bird sanctuaries and land in otherwise inaccessible places and although we set sail with a set itinerary, it is often the unscheduled events that become the highlight. We will be joined by a hand-picked expedition team, consisting of naturalists, marine biologists and ecologists who will share their knowledge and enthusiasm during forays ashore and whilst onboard.
You may combine this tour with Nomads of the Wind. Click here to view the full voyage South Seas Odyssey