(2:55 p.m. AEST) — Australia-based cruise line Coral Expeditions has announced its inaugural season in Asia, which will be offered on its flagship, Coral Discoverer, after a major refurbishment.
Seven expeditions will be undertaken from November 2016 to February 2017, charting the coastlines of Myanmar, Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia.
Focused on immersive cultural and culinary experiences, the new itineraries are aimed at active travellers, particularly those who may have previously been to Asia and would like to explore areas that are only accessible by small ship.
On arrival in Singapore later this year, the 72-passenger Coral Discoverer will receive a new class of bridge deck balcony cabins and a new bar on the sun deck.
Its first scheduled post-refurbishment departure is to be an eight-night itinerary from Kalimantan to Singapore, with opportunities to visit the Camp Leakey orangutan sanctuary and Way Kambas National Park in Indonesia.
Highlights of other cruises include sailing up the Irrawaddy River to berth in the old working river port at Yangon, hiking to the active Anak Krakatua volcano in Indonesia, a guided tour of the Burma WWII Railway Memorial, and Vietnam’s Vinh Moc Tunnels and Demilitarization Zone. The last 17-night sailing in Asia — from Singapore to Darwin — will bring the ship back to Australia.
“These are truly expedition-style cruises that bring our signature sense of adventure, dining experiences and Australian hospitality that our guests have come to know and love,» said the company’s general manager, Mark Fifield.
A key feature of all Coral Expedition ships is that passengers can step onto the tender from the main deck; the ship’s hydraulic platform then lowers the excursion vessel into the water. Also, all shore activities and excursions are included in the cruise fare.