Luxury French line Ponant has rolled out new, enticing itineraries that extend from Africa, the Maldives and the Arabian Gulf to India, China, Myanmar, Japan and Tahiti for 2020-21.
“Be it the gardens of Japan, the game reserves of Africa, diving and snorkelling in the crystal waters of Polynesia or experiencing the exotic fairyland of the Arabian Nights, there is a world of choice here,” says Monique Ponfoort, vice-president of Ponant Asia Pacific.
The line has a new, 9-night voyage Polynesia aboard Le Boreal and Le Soleal on 10 October 2020 and 4 May 2021. The round trip from Papeete will cruise the azure waters of French Polynesia and visit the remote Austral Islands, the pristine reef islet of Raivavae, the mysterious caves of Rurutu – a marine refuge for whales – and then on to the famous Bora Bora. Prices from $6130 per person in a superior stateroom, twin share.
For those wanting to explore the mystic of Asia, there is a 10-night Shanghai to Vietnam cruise on Le Laperouse departing on 28 October 2020. From futuristic Shanghai to Wenzhou, gateway to the magnificent UNESCO listed landscapes of the Yandang Mountains in Xiamen, Hong Kong, Hainan Island with its volcanoes to Ha Long Bay in Vietnam, this is a journey of contrasts. Prices from $7060 pp.
Ponant is also offering a voyage straight from the Arabian Nights with an eight-night journey from Dubai to Muscat with 10 departures aboard Le Jacques Cartier from November 2020 to January 2021. The cruise will call at Abu Dhabi, home to the Louvre Abu Dhabi and the Grand Mosque. In Doha, guests will be able to visit its renowned museum to view some of the treasures of Islamic art and the Waqif Souk in the old town. In Khasab, they will explore the sublime fjords of Arabia before arriving in the Gulf of Oman and the charming port of Sour. Prices from $5200 pp.
There is a 12-night cruise from Mumbai to Colombo on Le Laperouse departing on 28 December 2020. Passengers will discover the diversity of cultures, colonial influences and heritage of coastal India before sailing to Sri Lanka. Passengers will be able to experience former Portuguese colonies of Diu, Goa and the old town fortifications of Galle. The cruise will then sail around 50 idyllic Maldive Islands before visiting Cochin where the air is rich with the aroma of cardamom and Kerala. Prices from $7000pp.
Another new itinerary is a 14-night cruise of the Indian Ocean from Port Louis to Zanzibar aboard Le Jacques Cartier, departing on 29 March 2021. The cruise will call at Mauritius, Reunion Island and Madagascar where you can spot turtles, dolphins, rays and dugong. Passengers will visit lle Sainte-Marie, once a lair of pirates and Nosy Mitsio with its immaculate beaches on the west coats of Madagascar. The journey ends in exotic Zanzibar, a city blending millennial-old cultures of African, Arabic, Indian and European heritage. Prices from $9090pp.
Passengers who book their first Ponant cruise can save $800 per stateroom.