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Coral Expeditions Papua New Guinea

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Papua New Guinea

New Guinea Circle (Cairns to Wewak to Darwin), 25 Nights

Join us aboard Coral Adventurer over 25 unforgettable nights to experience some of the world’s most exotic and untouched regions as they emerge into the 21st century. This remarkable expedition will take you where other travellers have seldom visited, into the most remote corners of Papua New Guinea and Indonesia.

Throughout the expedition you will also discover the very best that New Guinea has to offer, from the vibrant rainforests to the world’s most colourful and diverse coral reefs. Come face to face with villagers who until recently have been shielded from the outside world. This is the most comprehensive experience ever undertaken in this fascinating region.

Expedition Highlights:

> Learn how the Trobriand Islands became the ‘Islands of Love’
> Explore Tufi’s spectacular fjords
> Cruise the mighty Sepik River
> Discover the pristine Raja Ampat region; a nature lover’s paradise
> Take in the aromas, colours and characters of the Spice Islands


25 November 2019 departure

Bridge Deck Balcony Suite $30,690 n/a
Bridge Deck Balcony Stateroom $26,590 n/a
Explorer Deck $25,790 $38,685
Promenade Deck $23,790 $35,685
Coral Deck $21,940 $32,910



View New Guinea Brochure

The Itinerary

Embark: Board at Cairns Cruise Liner Terminal at 7:30am on Monday 25 November 2019
Disembark: Arrive and disembark at Darwin’s Fort Hill Wharf at 08:30am on 20th December 2019


Day 1: Cairns

Board Coral Adventurer at 7:30am for an 9:00am departure. Leave Cairns behind as we begin our voyage towards Papua New Guinea. Take the opportunity to explore your new home and meet your fellow passengers.  Enjoy the Captain’s welcome drinks at sunset before sitting down to the first of many delicious dinners.

Day 2: At Sea

The Coral Sea: spend the day at leisure as you get to know your travelling companions or join our Expedition Leader and Guest Lecturer in the Lounge for presentations and briefings on Papua New Guinea, ahead of our arrival into Samarai.

Day 3: Samarai & Sewa Bay

Rich in history, Samarai Island has been declared a National Historical Heritage Island. A colonial capital and provincial government headquarters until 1968, Samarai is now a historical highlight of Milne Bay, with the ruins of the old town providing photo opportunities.

Day 4: Dobu and Fergusson Islands

Join our Expedition Staff on a walk to Dei Dei Hot Springs, where the people share their mythical and spiritual tales of these hot water and mud springs. Learn of the history of the Kula Ring at Dobu Island and meet the local primary school children, who will welcome us with a traditional dance performance. Snorkel the bubbling Springs Reef.

Day 5: Trobriand Islands

Historically known as the ‘Islands of Love’, the Trobriands offer a glimpse of traditional culture largely unspoiled by outside influence.  In the morning visit the island of Kuiawa to witness a traditional Trobriand dance performed by the colourfully costumed locals. Visit the local market and enjoy a swim off the adjacent island beach.

Day 6: Maclaren Harbour and Tufi Fjords

Local guides will paddle us on traditional canoes at Maclaren Harbour to their village in the rainforest.  Be welcomed with dances, demonstrations and traditional crafts.  Discover the scenic beauty of the rarely visited Maclaren Harbour.  Over lunch soak up spectacular views as we cruise close to the towering cliffs before entering Tufi Fjord.  Enjoy a leisurely swim and snorkel over colourful fringing reefs or visit the nearby resort for a relaxing time.

Day 7: Buna and Sanananda

The Battle of Buna saw some of the fiercest fighting between American, Australian and Japanese forces during the final stages of WW2. We walk through the jungle with the local villagers and discover the fascinating history.  After lunch we visit beautiful Sanananda to visit the War Museum, which the villagers have built to honour both sides. You have the opportunity to meet the local village people and enjoy their lovely gardens.

Day 8: Fly Islands and Lababia

Awaken early and travel ashore for a morning of water activities at Fly Island, which has very colourful coral reefs. Enjoy snorkelling, diving or glass bottom boat tours.  We visit the picturesque village of Lababia, gateway to one of the most important conservation areas in PNG, and enjoy welcome ceremonies and local dances.  You may also paddle on local outriggers and enjoy a village walk and market.

Day 9: Dregerhafen

Today we visit Dregerhafen in the Finschhafen district of Morobe, famous for Tami bowls and timber paddles.  Visit the village of Gingala for a high spirited PNG welcome.  The markets will be open and there will be a chance to walk through the village with the locals.  After lunch enjoy snorkelling, diving,  glass bottom boat tours and kayaking in the waters of the lagoon. Finish the day with drinks on the sundeck and our famous BBQ.

Day 10: Tuam

Enjoy a presentation from our guest lecturer as we steam towards the remote island of Tuam in the Siassi group. Tuam features two well- known and successful dance groups who will perform as we wander through the village. Along the way peruse the market stalls. Enjoy a guided walk with the locals and finish the day with water activities in the crystal clear water.

Day 11: Historic Madang

Explore Madang, which sits on the peninsula surrounded by a number of picturesque islands and is famed for its waterfront setting and colonial history. Discover the surrounding area on our Madang tour and after lunch visit the markets where there is the opportunity to purchase a large selection of artefacts from the region.

Day 12: Sepik River- Bien Village, Volcanic Manam Island

At first light the Coral Discoverer enters into the mighty Sepik River. Our destination is the remote village of Bien where the locals are famous for their arts and crafts. A true Sepik welcome awaits us as we step ashore!  Take the opportunity to purchase unique hand carvings the Sepik region is known for. As we depart from the great Sepik River,  sail past the active volcano at Manam Island as we enjoy the Captains Farewell drinks.

Day 13: Wewak

Early this morning we arrive into the port town of Wewak.  Farewell guests departing this morning and welcome new friends who will be joining us for the remainder of the expedition.

Day 14: Jayapura

Overnight we cross into West Papua waters ahead of our arrival in Jayapura, formerly known as ‘Hollandia’ during World War II and now a melting pot of sights and smells. Visit Lake Sentani, home to villagers famed for their distinctive art, and cruise on a longboat to see the stilt towns built over the tranquil lake,  Be welcomed at Asei Village by the local dancers and their accompanying traditional instruments.

Day 15: Mamberamo River

Explore the river known as the Amazon of Papua. As the largest and widest river in Indonesia, it cuts the northern mountain range in two and forms the border between the eastern Foja Mountains and the western Van Rees Mountains, weaving its way deep into virtually unexplored terrain. Tribes here are almost completely un-contacted and the vast biodiversity is incredibly preserved.

Day 16: At Sea

Spend a day at sea and join the Expedition Team in the Lounge for an introduction to Raja Ampat. Learn about the many wonderful experiences we will undertake over the coming days exploring the archipelago. Raja Ampat Islands is located in the heart of the Coral Triangle, the Centre of marine biodiversity in the world. The area is home to 75% of the world’s coral reef types with 553 types of coral reefs and 1,437 kinds of reef fish.

Day 17: Wayag

Welcome to Raja Ampat. Experience the breathtaking views as we enter Wayag lagoon, then explore the magical maze of limestone karst ‘gumdrop’ islands aboard the Xplorer and zodiacs. After lunch enjoy water activities on the nearby beach or for the very fit climb to the top of Mt. Pindito for the panoramic view.

Day 18: Kofiau Island

We make our way to Kofiau Island, another island of the Raja Ampat region. Be welcomed by local village dancers on a “flatform boat” as they lead us ashore to Kampung Deer. Local guides lead us through as we explore the village. A local long-boat transfer takes us to the next village Kampung Awat where we enjoy an Opening Sasi ceremony and beach BBQ. We spend the afternoon snorkelling, bird watching and exploring other villages.

Day 19: Hidden Bay

Awake in remote Hidden Bay. Cruise through the scenic Wallace passage aboard the Xplorer and zodiacs.  There is ample time to kayak, enjoy glass bottom boat tours, snorkel and SCUBA dive.

Day 20: Yensawai Village and Yenwaoupnor Village

Board Xplorer and cruise into the village of Yensawai on the Island of Batanta.  Be greeted by the local people who will guide you through their village and visit the primary school to see the children in full song.  Visit the local market on the water front and board zodiacs for a cruise through the mangroves, before enjoying a short walk to the waterfall.  Visit Gam Island and the village of Yenwaoupnor to be welcomed with cultural entertainment and sample food cooked traditionally in the underground oven.

Day 21: Yenwaoupnor Village and Mesempta

For the fit and able there is an early 0530 start on a steep hike in search of the elusive Red Bird of Paradise hidden in the trees.  Enter through the stunning channel leading to our late afternoon anchorage and finish the day with our famous BBQ on the sundeck overlooking beautiful Mesempta.

Day 22: Mesempta and Wagmab

Awaken at Mesempta to enjoy a visually spectacular cruise on Xplorer.  Enjoy snorkelling and glass bottom boat tours in the sheltered lagoon. Enter the Misool archipelago to visit Wagmab and snorkel or dive the magnificent coral gardens and steep reef walls. Enjoy interpretation by our guest lecturers.

Day 23: Banda and Spice Islands

Today we explore the centre of the Spice Islands, where the world’s supply of nutmeg and mace has been traded for over 2000 years.  See Gunung Api volcano and Banda’s famous Kora Kora canoes in action.  At Banda town our guides will introduce us to the sights and smells of this historic area. We wander past the remnants of mansions constructed during Dutch colonialism on a town tour and visit historic buildings before visiting the markets. Refresh onboard before joining the locals for a traditional dance and music performance while enjoying a glass of champagne on top of Fort Belgica.

Day 24: The Spice Islands

An early morning option to snorkel or dive over the unique submerged lava flow.  For those wishing a leisurely morning, return to Banda and enjoy the traditions of a bygone era with cinnamon tea and local delicacies at the waterfront hotel before we farewell the Spice Islands and set sail towards Darwin.

Day 25: Crossing the Timor Sea

Spend the day at leisure enjoying the on board facilities as we cross the Timor Sea and join our Expedition Team in the ship’s lounge for a recap of the expedition.  Reminisce with your new found friends at the Captain’s Farewell Drinks.

Day 26: Arrive Darwin

This morning at 8:30am we arrive at Darwin’s Fort Hill wharf, marking the end of our great adventure discovering New Guinea.

This itinerary is an indication of the destinations we visit and activities on offer. Throughout the expedition, we may make changes to the itinerary as necessary to maximise your expeditionary experience. Allowances may be made for seasonal variations, weather, tidal conditions and any other event that may affect the operation of the vessel. The itinerary includes the possibility of interaction with wild animals and this interaction is subject to the presence of this wildlife on the day.

November 2019

Departure Departure Arrival Arrival Cost Per Person Cost PP Ship Availability  
25 November 2019 25 Nov 2019 20 December 2019 20 Dec 2019 $21,940 to $26,590 $21,940 to $26,590 Coral Adventurer Available Book

December 2019

Departure Departure Arrival Arrival Cost Per Person Cost PP Ship Availability  
25 November 2019 25 Nov 2019 20 December 2019 20 Dec 2019 $21,940 to $26,590 $21,940 to $26,590 Coral Adventurer Available Book

Your cruise price includes:

  • Accommodation in selected room grade for the number of nights as listed in each itinerary
  • All meals
  • House beer and wine during lunch and dinner service
  • 24 hour tea and coffee
  • Captain’s welcome and farewell drinks
  • Access to islands, marine and national parks
  • Guided tours on Xplorer expedition vessel, zodiacs, glass-bottom boat and kayaks
  • Touring as described in each itinerary
  • Services of expedition staff and lecturers including briefings and knowledge-sharing sessions
  • Port taxes and government charges imposed by government authorities

Your cruise price does not include:

  • Pre and post flights, transfers and hotels
  • Entry visas/travel permits
  • Travel Insurance
  • Items of a personal nature including but not limited to phone and internet communications and bar charges (outside of the included drinks package as highlighted), laundry charges and souvenir purchases

Tipping not required:

Other cruise lines automatically add gratuities to your account and service charges to your bar invoices. On Coral Adventurer, our crew has no other agenda than your delight.

Now that you’ve chosen your cruise, our reservations specialists are on hand to assist with all of your booking arrangements.

To speak to our reservations specialists contact us during business hours on freecall 1800 079 545 (within Australia), or email

Don’t forget, we strongly recommend the purchase of Travel Insurance with any cruise purchase. See below for further details.

Recommended Cairns Hotels

Novotel Oasis Cairns Resort

Beautiful tropical and modern contemporary style is awaiting you at the Novotel Oasis Cairns Resort. Each spacious room features air-conditioning and a private balcony or terrace facing the resort pools, tropical gardens or Cairns city. A short stoll leads to many local restaurants and the Cairns waterfront with it many attractions.

Pullman Cairns International

The Pullman Cairns International is a beautiful five star heritage-style hotel, located right in the heart of the Cairns CBD. The hotel boasts 321 rooms, your choice of Executive Suites, Premium Rooms, Harbour View Rooms, or City Mountain View Rooms. All rooms are very spacious and include private balconies. Bathrooms feature Italian marble, with back-heated mirrors.

Pullman Reef Hotel & Casino

Nestled in the heart of Cairns just 200 metres from Trinity Wharf, the 5-star Pullman Reef Hotel offers luxuriously appointed rooms in an unmistakably Tropical North Queensland style and feature light timbers, plantation shutters, spa bath and private garden balcony. Outstanding service awaits at the Pullman.

Pacific, Cairns

Superbly located right on the Esplanade partially overlooking Trinity Harbour and parklands, with easy access to the restaurant precinct, night markets and more. All rooms have private balconies and feature tea and coffee facilities and WIFI. The popular Bushfire Flame Grill features Brazilian inspired, Australian style BBQ.

Recommended Darwin Hotels

Doubletree by Hilton Esplanade

Located in a prime position close to the waterfront, the Doubletree by Hilton Esplanade offers comfortable and well appointed rooms, a large outdoor pool and friendly, relaxed service. Just a short stroll from all of the attractions of the city, the restaurants of Mitchell Street and art galleries.

Hilton Darwin

Overlooking Darwin Harbour, Hilton Darwin offers fabulous Esplanade views and an ideal location in the heart of the city. Enjoy contemporary features, great location and a welcoming service every time you stay. The elegant rooms and suites are loaded with thoughtful amenities and many have stunning Harbour views. We also offers Mitchell’s Grill restaurant with innovative Australian cuisine, high-floor outdoor pool, gym, flexible meeting space and more.

Darwin Central Hotel

The Darwin Central Hotel is located on a prime position in the heart of Darwin’s Central Business District on the corner of Smith and Knuckey Streets, opposite the Smith Street Shopping Mall.

The hotel enjoys a very stylish theme with artwork and furnishings throughout the hotel, making every floor a walk through gallery. The hotel has been decorated with a diverse selection of lounges and artworks with each piece individually selected to create the boutique feel with contemporary class and style. The hotel is owned by a local Darwin Company and is proud to be a long standing Northern Territory Business.

Adina Apartment Hotel

Adina Apartment Hotel Darwin Waterfront is located in the heart of the Darwin Waterfront precinct with close proximity to the CBD and overlooking the Darwin Waterfront Recreational Lagoon and manmade Wave Lagoon.

Adina is the perfect choice for discerning travellers with central locations across Australia, New Zealand and Europe. Offering a range of spacious accommodation for guests including: studios, one, two and three bedroom apartments.


Comprehensive Travel Insurance is strongly recommended for all travellers as protection against any unforeseen events that may necessitate the cancellation or interruption of your holiday and should be purchased at the same time as you purchase your cruise. It should also include emergency evacuation and repatriation cover.

We recommend Travel Insurance by SureSave.

SureSave, is an Australian company who specialise in travel insurance designed for travellers. SureSave provides world assistance through a customer support team, a claims team and an in-house 24/7 Emergency Assistance division. Underwritten by Lloyds of London, you get peace of mind knowing your security is guaranteed. When you need help, you’ll get it in a familiar accent from someone who understands and is there to help.

Please note: SureSave Travel Insurance policies may only be purchased by Australian residents. For international travellers, please discuss your policy requirements with your local insurance provider.