Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Rare Voyages On Aranui

The Aranui is the only ship to sail the 2,200 mile round-trip from Papeete to all six inhabited Marquesa islands, making it a lifeline to the outside world for their people. The 14-night voyage to the most remote archipelago in the world follows in the wake of Prince William and Kate, as well as famous artist, Paul Gauguin, author of Moby Dick, Herman Melville, and Robert Louis Stevenson, all of whom were inspired by the beauty of French Polynesia.

Highlights range from the mountain spires of Ua Pou, described by Stevenson in 1880 as “volcanic needles like the pinnacles of some ornate church", to Me'ae Te Iipona in Puamau, one of the most significant ancient temples in the region, with the highest concentration of traditional tiki statues.

Passengers will have the opportunity to see rare black pearls being harvested from giant oysters in the Tuamotu islands, meet traditional artists throughout the Marquesas and transfer ashore on whale boats to take in the historic, cultural and scenic sights and enjoy breath-taking hikes to hidden jungle ruins.

The Aranui, a cargo carrier-cum-passenger ship, boasts 86 fully air-conditioned cabins as well as the capacity to carry more than 2,000 tons of freight. Passengers enjoy comfortable lounges, a swimming pool and gym and a full programme of lectures on Marquesan history, culture and art.

Prices for 2013 start from £3,125 per person sharing a standard twin bedded outside cabin with private facilities, including all meals with wine, all land-based sightseeing excursions and taxes. However, during 2013, three departures are being offered at a 10% discount: 6 April, 8 June and, for seniors aged over 60 only, 31 August, bringing the starting price down to Euros £2,781.

For more info look up www.aranui.com, or follow this link to The Cruise Line, the UK's adventure cruising specialists.