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Madagascar, Zanzibar and the jewels of the Indian Ocean

During an 11-day expedition cruise aboard Le Champlain, time stands still and, between the island country of Madagascar, Seychelles and Tanzania, nature will plunge you into a dream.

Cruise Only
10 nights

Unknown Holiday
Port Louis
Zanzibar
Madagascar
Mauritius

Call us now on 01756 706500 to secure your cabin!

CP

The shores of Mauritius grow distant as you arrive in flamboyant Madagascar. To the north-east of the largest island in the Indian Ocean, the island of Île Sainte-Marie appears on the horizon. The days of pirates, who occupied the territory for almost two centuries, seem long gone now, as peace prevails in this tropical paradise. To the far south, the island of Île aux Nattes is a treasure just asking to be discovered. Its coral reef lies in the translucent waters of its lagoon, dotted with natural pools. You will spend your time here swimming, meeting the local population and discovering the abundant fauna and flora. Before leaving the 'Great Red Island', you will visit Nosy Hara, renowned for its incredible marine wildlife, with over 280 different species.

Sheltered from the world, take the time to wonder at the splendour of the Seychelles. On Astove Island, in the mythical Aldabra Atoll, the underwater world fascinates experienced divers, who come here to explore the “Wall of Astove“, a 40-metre (130-foot) deep underwater fault covered in coral and teeming with fish and green turtles.

Your next ports of call will be an opportunity to discover several of the wonders of Tanzania. You will explore the ruins of the 13th-century Swahili trading post of Kilwa Kisiwani, the small coral island of Misali as well as Pemba Island and its clove plantations and fantastic scuba diving. This fabulous trip will draw to an end in Zanzibar, a city with superb UNESCO-listed buildings, blending African, Arab, Indian and European influences over more than a millennium.

CP958 Operated by Ponant Luxury and Expedition

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Madagascar, Zanzibar and the jewels of the Indian Ocean Itinerary

Day 1 - Port Louis

On the north-west coast of Mauritius, discover Port Louis, the country’s multicultural capital. Constantly in movement, the city, which was once a port of call on the route to India, is home to many cultural and historic treasures. In addition to the city’s market where you will be able to discover all the local flavours and many handicrafts, make sure that you visit Fort Adelaide. Nestling on the heights of Port Louis, this citadel built in the 16th century, classified as a national heritage monument, offers sumptuous views over the surroundings. Not far from there, the Pamplemousse Botanical Garden will reveal to you its countless plant species, coming from all four corners of the world.

Day 2 - At Sea

During your journey at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This journey without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, depending on the activities offered, or to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

Day 3 - Ile Aux nattes

The Île aux Nattes lies surrounded by a coral reef, to the far south of Nosy Boraha (previously known as Île Sainte-Marie) in the Madagascar region of Tamatave. Its lush vegetation contrasts with the white sand and crystal-clear and turquoises waters of its lagoon whose sea beds you can explore snorkelling or diving. Its fringed shores are home to natural pools that will invite you to relax or swim. Or you may prefer to walk along its coastal paths dotted with welcoming little villages. Off the east coast of Madagascar, discover the island of St. Mary. A real Garden of Eden, this peaceful land will offer you landscapes of stunning beauty, with lush vegetation, enormous waterfalls and sumptuous natural pools. In addition, the island is home to a very large variety of orchids. An idyllic natural setting that contrasts with the eventful past of the island, which once played host to pirates and prisoners. This port of call will also provide you with privileged access to the Île aux Nattes, renowned for its wild beauty.

Day 4 - At Sea

During your journey at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This journey without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, depending on the activities offered, or to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

Day 5 - Nosy Hara

Its limestone rock formations rising from the waters, or marine “tsingies” typical of Madagascar, make Nosy Hara both exceptional and immediately recognisable. Located to the north-west of Madagascar, the island is a protected area due to its incredible biodiversity. It is a veritable open-air aquarium inhabited by around 280 marine species. The rocky columns edged with gorgeous white-sand and pebble beaches fading into shades of deep blue make an idyllic place cut off from the world. Succumb to the charms of this untouched jewel that will welcome you into its stunning decor for a special experience. This is an ideal location for snorkelling.

Day 6 - Astove Island

Closer to Madagascar than to Victoria, Astove is the southernmost island in the Seychelles. It is part of the Aldabra group, in the Outer Islands of the Seychelles. Now uninhabited, this coral island covered in coconut trees was once home to the employees that worked on the coconut plantations. Renowned for the richness of its seabeds, Astove Atoll is now a top destination for fishing enthusiasts. It also attracts experienced divers, who visit the atoll to explore the “Astove Wall”, where the sea floor drops to a depth of about 40 metres. The wall is covered in coral and many fish and green sea turtles can be found there.

Day 7 - At Sea

During your journey at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This journey without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, depending on the activities offered, or to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

Day 8 - Kilwa Kisiwani

Near the Tanzanian coast, around 300 km south of Dar es Salaam, the island of Kilwa Kisiwani is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Occupied from the 9th century to the 11th century, it reached its heights in the 13th and 14th centuries. It was described by the Moroccan explorer Ibn Battouta as “one of the most beautiful cities in the world.” A former Swahili trading city, the island prospered from the trade of gold and ivory from the inland regions. The remains of its former port city cover a large part of the island. Those of its superb Great Mosque, the oldest mosque remaining on the coast of East Africa, are well worth a visit.

Day 9 - Pemba Island

The second-largest island in the Zanzibar Archipelago, edged with fine sand and bathed in a sea in infinite shades of turquoise, Pemba Island astounds with the whiteness of its shores and its abundant tropical forest. It is mountainous with hills full of fertile land and has the nickname “the Green Island”. You’ll fall in love with its quiet shores, full of authenticity. Banana trees, coconut trees, clove trees, nutmeg trees… its lush vegetation ensures the local production of spices that has made its reputation (essentially cloves but also nutmeg, vanilla, cinnamon, turmeric, pepper, etc.).

Day 10 - Misali Island

Renowned for its underwater world, Misali became a protected conservation area in 1998. So, it’s possible to admire its sea beds and swim there, but not to fish. If conditions allow, you’ll perhaps have the chance to see varied underwater fauna. To the north-east of the island, a white sandy beach, bathed in stunningly transparent turquoise water, is an ideal place to relax.

Day 11 - Zanzibar

Once a mythical post along the legendary Indian Ocean trade route, today a certain whiff of adventure still pervades in Zanzibar. Located off the coast of Tanzania, this place often referred to as “spice island” is brimming with natural treasures, such as Jozani Forest, the last remains of the huge primeval forest that once covered the island, home to a unique ecosystem. This port of call will also be the moment to discover ”Stone Town”, the historical centre of Zanzibar, a UNESCO World Heritage site. A veritable labyrinth of narrow streets lined with houses made from coral stone, it is home to sumptuous buildings in a multitude of architectural styles, the result of the blending of African, European and Indian cultures.

Price Includes

  • 7 ships including 6 new megayachts with 264 guests, 139 crew members
  • 'Green Ships' with Ice Classification for expedition cruising
  • Most cabins with balconies
  • 24-hour room service
  • French gourmet cuisine and wine with meals
  • Open bar
  • Choice of open-seating restaurants
  • Sophisticated French design and interiors
  • Carita Spa
  • Themed cruises and entertainment
  • Elegant casual wear in evenings
  • Unlimited complimentary Wi-Fi on board

Please contact us for the latest dates and prices

Call us now on 01756 706500

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