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Monthly Archives: March 2017

World's Top Ten Best Expedition Cruises

Posted by Dallas Sherringham on March 06, 2017

A journey to the Top of the World featuring the North Pole has just been named the world’s greatest expedition cruise.

And in a major coup for Australia’s tourism industry, Kimberley cruising in Western Australia runs a close second in the list of the 10 most highly rated expedition cruises world-wide.

The world’s Top 10 was announced by the leading experts in this exclusive field, Expedition Cruise Specialists. General Manager Andrew Castles revealed the rankings which were based on each destination’s “wow factor”, affording traveller’s unique life experiences.

There were some unexpected destinations in the rankings including Kiribati and Iceland. Surprise omissions include the much-touted Amazon and Africa which is still developing as a cruise destination.

 

1. TOP OF THE WORLD (NORTH POLE)

For generations of explorers and adventurers, a journey to the Arctic and the North Pole has been the ultimate expedition. Mr Castles said: “Pristine landscapes, bountiful wildlife, indigenous tribes, polar bears and natural phenomena give the Arctic a unique appeal and make it the world’s best expedition destination.”  Getting to the North Pole is difficult, but the world’s most powerful icebreaker, the nuclear-powered 50 Years of Victory, makes it possible.

 

North Pole Top of the World Expedition

 

2. THE KIMBERLEY COAST

The sheer scale and awesome beauty of the Kimberley has to be seen to be believed. Every visitor to this stunning region returns home a changed person. Mr Castles is one such person and he admits to a being a long term fan of the region.  “Kimberley cruising aboard Coral Discoverer or True North takes you through the daunting canyons, waterfalls and untouched wilderness of Australia’s north west wonderland and has to be experienced to appreciate how amazing it really is.”

 

Kimberley Cruise aboard True North

 

3. ANTARCTICA

Our southern neighbour offers the unique combination of amazing wildlife and awesome landscapes frozen in time. According to Mr Castles there are many ways to see experience the region, but one unique adventure is the Base Camp Ortelius expedition. “Designed for Antarctic exploration the Ortelius acts as a floating base camp while anchored for several days in specific locations. You can explore by kayak and zodiac on the water or go hiking in snowshoes and even mountaineering. There is nothing quite like it.”

 

Expedition cruises to Antarctica include ice camping

 

4. ALASKA

Glaciers, ice covered mountains, frontier towns and pristine waters make Alaska one of the most sought after destinations on earth. Mr Castles said it was a very popular region, but aboard a ship like the new National Geographic Quest you can get far away from the normal cruise routes. “This type of cruise is not just a sightseeing trip, it is a full on journey for people who enjoy hiking and physical activities. You immerse yourself in a world of fjords, ancient villages and stunning forests.”

 

Close to nature on an Alaskan expedition cruise

 

5. PAPUA NEW GUINEA

It is the people decorated in their traditional dress, dancing and singing with great joy and happiness that make Papua New Guinea such an inspiring place to visit. Cruising through unspoilt islands and visiting remote villages is an unforgettable experience. Mr Castles said:  “Papua New Guinea is one of the world’s last great frontiers. You will experience magical and rarely-visited islands aboard small ships such as the luxury Coral Discoverer and enjoy a voyage rich in culture, history and natural beauty. Papua New Guinea is home to the largest area of intact rainforest outside of the Amazon and guests will discover magnificent scenery ranging from colourful coral atolls to volcanic mountains, pristine waterways and mighty rivers.”

 

Papua New Guinean villagers welcome Coral Discoverer ship

 

6. GALÀPAGOS ISLANDS

Every lover of wildlife, sea life and unique experiences rates the Galápagos Islands right at the top of their list of places to visit. “It is a region offering many expedition experiences from smaller catamaran ships like Ocean Spray and Sea Star Journey through to Lindblad Expeditions’ impressive National Geographic Endeavour II. Whichever way you see it, you will be mesmerised by the experience.”

 

Discover the Galapagos Islands on a small ship expedition

 

7. CANADA'S NORTH WEST PASSAGE

Seen as the “impossible” sea journey for generations, modern specially designed ice-rated ships have made the daunting North West passage accessible. Mr Castles said the Akademik Ioffe offers a crossing to Greenland that is one of “life’s great trips”. “On the way explore the remote Northwest Passage and the stunning fjords of the Baffin Island coastline before crossing to Greenland. Wildlife is a major drawcard of this 13-day expedition, venture through the home of the polar bear, musk ox, caribou and walrus.”

 

Voyage through Canada's North West Passage aboard Akademik Ioffe

 

8. INDONESIAN ARCHIPELAGO

Our near neighbour is a surprise inclusion, but beyond the tourist hordes of Bali lies a region full of friendly people, unknown islands and crystal clear lagoons teeming with life. You will immerse yourself in the Komodo National Park and Indonesia’s Lesser Sunda Islands from an intimate perspective, cruising through a panorama of islands and encountering new wonders on a daily basis. For example, a 7-day voyage of discovery aboard the 24-passenger Ombak Putih offers a cross-section of remote beaches, quiet coastal villages, jungle-clad mountain ranges, towering volcanoes, rivers, waterfalls, tribal rituals, a mysterious lake, and the legendary Komodo Dragons.”

 

Cruising Indonesia's many islands

 

9. ICELAND AND NORTHERN LIGHTS

Iceland is the new wonder destination for expedition travellers. Mr Castles said this one off expedition  combined the unforgettable waterways of the region with the fjords of Greenland, remote settlements and the chance to experience the famed northern lights. ”There is nothing else quite like it,” he said.

 

Expedition cruise to the Northern Lights - Aurora Borealis

 

10. KIRIBATI’S SOUTHERN LINE ISLANDS

Way out in the Pacific is a remote region which is virtually unknown to most adventurers. However Mr Castles said the “wonders of this amazing paradise were both above and below the water.” Aboard National Geographic Orion you will discover that the notion of tropical paradise is alive and well - as are some of the world’s best dive and snorkel sites. The expedition explores from Rangiroa’s sparkling lagoon to the verdant peaks of Tahiti’s neighbor, Moorea. This voyage maximises your time in some of the most vibrant undersea sites in the world. Plus, there’s time to stroll pristine beaches, kayak peaceful coves, and experience true Polynesian hospitality. 

 

Southern Line Islands cruise aboard Orion

 

Dallas Sherringham is a media professional, world traveller and regular contributor to our blog.

Kimberley Cruising For The Ultimate Holiday Experience

Posted by Andrew Castles on March 04, 2017

True North at Montgomery Reef in the Kimberley

 

If you are planning your next cruise, you have probably noticed that most of what is on offer are all very much the same experience.  The same type of mega ship, the same on board activities and the same island ports of call. 

These standard cruises are fine if you have never cruised before, however once you have experienced the standard package, they all seem to be the same.

Many of us love the idea of enjoying a cruise, and being spoilt by not having to cook our meals or make our beds.

However it can become somewhat boring if you are not a bingo enthusiast or disco dancing queen.

A lot of us want to visit places that are unique, breathtaking and exciting. Of course we enjoy a little luxury thrown in as well.

The Kimberley Cruising Experience Is All About The Destination

In Australia, the Kimberley coast is one of the world's great expedition cruising destinations. 

The Kimberley cruising experience will leave you in awe, as you take in the most breathtaking scenery. 
 
The Kimberley region with it's deliciously rich colour palette, offers spectacular waterfalls, ancient indigenous art, wildlife and night skies that are filled with twinkling lights.

With so much natural beauty here in our backyards, there is no need to go elsewhere.

 

Kimberley Cruise Specialists 

One of the great options to experience the Kimberley is on the magnificent True North.

Carefully crafted itineraries allow guests the opportunity to ‘experience the destination’ – daily activities can include scenic walks, helicopter flights, fishing, snorkelling, culture, picnics, nature, diving, exploring and much more!

The True North features the ultimate in comfort and style! 

With cabins that are spacious, featuring modern décor, large en­suites, satellite telephones and in cabin entertainment, you will be totally spoilt.

Modern cuisine is also featured onboard the True North. 

This is the real definition of a holiday cruise, an unforgettable adventure in our own spectacular backyard. 

Passenger numbers are limited (36) and a young Australian crew (20) provides excellent personalised service. 

Multiple expedition vessels take guests away in small groups to experience wilderness ‘up close’ and, to add yet another dimension to adventure, most of the cruise options feature an onboard helicopter.

 

True North cruises the Kimberley with an onboard helicopter

 

The Ultimate Kimberley Cruise

The Kimberley Ultimate has become known as one of Australia’s most exclusive holiday experiences – and for good reason.

This 13-night Kimberley expedition between Wyndham and Broome boasts all of the region's icons, along with many 'secret' locations other ships can't reach.

This expedition should definitely be on your bucket list. It is an experience of a lifetime with exemplary service from an all-Australian crew, a great expedition team and superb dining.

 

True North's chefs are renowned for their fine dining in the Kimberley

 

For more information on how to plan the holiday of your lifetime, contact us on 
Postal Address:

PO Box 7486 CAIRNS QLD 4870 AUSTRALIA

Speak to an expedition specialist:

Phone: +61 7 4041 2101

Freecall: 1800 90 20 80 (within Australia)

Email: [email protected]

Office opening hours:

Monday to Friday 08:30 – 17:30 AEST

Saturday 09:00 – 12:00 AEST

*Office hours are Australian Eastern Standard Time.