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Australia | New Zealand | Fiji | French Polynesia

Opinions of what constitutes Oceania range, but for our purpose, we will encompass (largely) the islands of the South Pacific including Australia, New Zealand, French Polynesia, and the island nation of Fiji.

Hospitable land of kangaroos, wallabies and koala bears, the natural splendor of Australia ~ a.k.a. the Down Under ~ is truly unique. From its vast Outback and red-sand landscapes to the far reaches of Kangaroo Island and the Kimberly, Australia’s beauty is one of a kind. Step back in time with an exclusive visit to a private sheep station, or ‘hang’ and horse-trek with the cowboys in a working cattle station. Treat yourself to the sophisticated culinary experiences and fine vintages of Hunter Valley and the Blue Mountains. Swim, sail, snorkel or scuba amidst the technicolor coral reefs of the Great Barrier Reef with its tropical marine population. Finally, take delight in Sydney’s cultural landmarks and bustling bushland ambience.

Then on to the island nation of neighboring New Zealand - consisting primarily of the subtropical, more populated north island and glacier-clad Alpine south island. Home of Maori culture, rolling farmlands, bubbling geothermal pools, emerald lakes, world-class fishing, and some of the most delightful hotels and lodges on earth, New Zealand offers a world-class, environmentally serene adventure.

Your luxury adventure travel experience is taken to new heights on the islands of Fiji and French Polynesia. With resorts headlining over-water bungalows and white sand beaches, and secluded luxury hotels built on crystal blue lagoons, these islands offer a dream vacation for families, honeymooners and anyone seeking the ultimate south sea island escape.

We're here to help you navigate the options and orchestrate a custom holiday that suits perfectly your special wishes and interests.

A Many-Splendored Japan


aboard Le Soleal - May 30- June 12, 2019

Visit Japan's scenic ports and rarely seen wilderness areas - all while sailing aboard the beautiful Le Soleal - sister ship to Le Boreal and exclusively chartered for this unique expedition. This one-of-a-kind journey navigates Japan's less-frequented interior and coastal areas in style and in the company of an award-winning expedition team. 

  • Take in one-of-a-kind insights as you travel in the company of an award-winning expedition team, keynote lecturers and guides.
  • Cruise aboard luxurious, exclusively chartered Le Soleal with no more than 199 guests and all gratuities, shore excursions and bar drinks included.
  • Discover Japan in a way only possible by small ship, visiting unique ports and off-the-beaten-path wilderness areas.
  • Visit Gyeongju, South Korea, ancient dynastic capital and UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Reflect on Japan's turbulent history and witness its miraculous resurgence at Hiroshima.
  • Enjoy fascinating onboard lectures about Japanese art and culture, history, geology, economy and horticulture.
  • Attend exclusive and private openings of the Chichu Art and Ohara Museum as well as exclusive welcome and farewell ceremonies in select ports of call.
  • Choose from a wide array of included shore excursions, including opportunities to experience Japan's culture, architecture, arts and natural history

Itinerary

Day 1:  Arrive Osaka, Japan 
Cross the International Dateline and arrive at Osaka’s Kansai International Airport. After clearing customs and immigration, meet your representative and transfer to your stylish, tranquil Kyoto hotel, situated in a historic area of Higashiyama Shichijo. Spend the remainder of the day at leisure, or set out to explore culturally rich Kyoto at your own pace. Featuring over 2,000 temples and shrines, 17 of which have been designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the nation’s former capital was the emperor’s residence from 794 to 1868. Because the city largely avoided bombing during WWII, its historic aura remains intact.  Hyatt Regency Kyoto

Day 2:  Kyoto | Cultural Epicenter
Set out on an enlightening tour of Kyoto, paying visits to Nijo Castle, The Golden Pavilion and Tenryuji Temple, for a talk about Zen Buddhism. Pause for lunch at a local restaurant. Then, continue to Kiyomizu Temple and Heian Shrine before returning to your hotel. Gather this evening for a welcome reception and dinner to meet your fellow travelers, your Expedition Team and local guides who will be accompanying you and adding enrichment throughout your voyage.  Hyatt Regency Kyoto | Meals: B L D

Day 3:  Osaka | The Adventure Begins
After breakfast, take a guided walking tour of the temples in the surrounding Higashiyama Shichijo district. After lunch, transfer from Kyoto to Osaka, where you will board the luxurious Le Soleal, your home for the next 10 nights.  
Le Soleal 
| Meals: B L D

Day 4:  Takamatsu | Explore Your Way
Arrive this morning in Takamatsu, gateway to Shikoku Island. Choose from an array of intimate, thoughtfully planned excursions. Whether revolving around nature, gastronomy, arts or culture, each has been designed to reveal Japan at its most authentic. You may, for example, travel to Naoshima Island by ferry for a full-day excursion, celebrating its architecture and art museums. Visit the breathtaking hillside Chichu Art Museum and stop at Benesse House, a complex featuring unique work by Japanese and international artists. Alternately, board a high-speed boat to Shodoshima, or Shodo Island, the heart of Japan’s olive-growing industry for a full-day tour. You may otherwise remain on Shikoku Island, experiencing Takamatsu’s most acclaimed features. Begin with a visit to Ritsurin Park, one of Japan’s finest gardens. After taking in the pond, bridge and hill-stippled setting, attend a hands-on udon noodle-making demonstration to gain insight into this local culinary art. Spend the rest of the day at your own pace in the lovely port of Takamatsu with time to explore the shops and enjoy the lively atmosphere. Return to the ship at leisure.
Le Soleal
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| Meals: B L D

 

Day 5:  Hiroshima/Miyajima | Hiroshima & the Torii Gate
This morning, Le Soleal arrives in the port of Hiroshima, where you may choose to visit Hiroshima Peace Park and Museum, its cenotaph containing names of the known victims of the atomic bomb, followed by a speedboat ride to Miyajima Island to witness the scarlet Torii Gate at the entrance to the sacred Shinto Shrine. Or, set out on a full-day excursion through Hiroshima, visiting Hiroshima Castle and Hiroshima Peace Park and Museum and attending a private meeting and lecture conducted by an atomic bomb survivor. Alternately, you may spend a full day on the tranquil island of Miyajima, where you visit the Itsukushima-Jinja Shrine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site; take a take a cable car and hike to the top of Mount Misen; and visit the Shinto Shrine and Torii Gate. Return to Le Soleal, and continue sailing through the Kamnon Strait en route to the Korea Strait.  
Le Soleal 
 | Meals: B L D

Day 6:  Karatsu | Ancient Trading Post
This afternoon, Le Soleal arrives at the port of Karatsu. Once an early trading post between Japan and mainland Asia, Karatsu still maintains its medieval heritage. Visit Karatsu Castle, known as the “flying crane castle.” Pay a visit to the Hikiyama Exhibition Hall, which houses the floats and artifacts used in the annual Karatsu Kunchi autumn festival, recently inscribed on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list. You may also visit Ningyo Joruri (puppet theater) and the Nakazato Taroemon Kiln, a ceramic studio that has been active since the late 16th century. Alternatively, visit the Kitahata Shige region to meet green tea farmers, along with the chance to pick your own tea leaves.  
Le Soleal 
 | Meals: B L D

Day 7:  Gyeongju, South Korea | Ancient Korean Capital
Disembark and spend a full day discovering Gyeongju, South Korea, the ancient capital of the Shilla Dynasty and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Gyeongju’s cultural heritage dates back to the first millennium, when it began a thousand-year rule of Korea. Witness its excavated monuments, temples, tombs and pagodas, gaining insight from your vessel’s cultural historian. Then, unearth the treasures of the National Museum, which houses an exceptional collection of gold jewelry, metal weapons and distinctive pottery. Sit down to a lunch of Korean delicacies, and witness a traditional dance performance.  
Le Soleal 
 | Meals: B L D

Day 8:  Matsue, Japan | Verdant Gardens
Today, disembark at Sakaiminato and visit Matsue — the “town of water” — nestled between a scenic lake and a large lagoon. Choose to explore the countryside, pausing at Peonies Village to wander through its picturesque Yuushien Gardens. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before visiting historic Matsue Castle, one of Japan’s few remaining medieval castles, built in its original wooden form. Alternately, visit the garden-frocked Adachi Museum of Art, which combines the founders’ passions for art and garden design and is recognized consistently as one of Japan’s top-rated gardens. Following a traditional lunch at a ryokan (inn) visit Yakumo-mura Village to learn the art of Japanese paper making.  
Le Soleal 
 | Meals: B L D

Days 9-10:  Kanazawa | Epicenter for the Arts
Spend the next two days exploring the thriving art center of Kanazawa, known for its Kutani-style pottery and gold-leaf workmanship. Optional tours allow you to traverse its winding cobblestone streets, seeing traditional houses, museums, galleries and view a geisha performance at Higashi Chaia geisha district. At your leisure, wander through Omicho Market, which features everything from fresh flowers to fish and local handicrafts. Later, enjoy a tea ceremony and discover the sophisticated Kenrokuen Garden, renowned for its contemplative botanical designs. Alternatively, you may choose a more active excursion, including hiking in Kakusenkei Gorge, followed by lunch at a local restaurant and an onsen (hot spring) experience in the Yamanaka onsen district. Or, visit scenic Shirakawa-go and the Shogawa River Valley.  
Le Soleal
 
 | Meals: B L D

Day 11:  Sado-ga-shima | Kodo Drummers
Travel off the beaten path and arrive at Sado Island, a pastoral locale replete with verdant rice paddies, bamboo groves and dramatic, surf-pounded sea coasts. Political exiles, deposed emperors and intellectuals were once “banished” to live in this beautiful setting. Today, enjoy an exclusive and private performance by the world-renowned Kodo Taiko Drummers. This exhilarating performance will be followed by a rare opportunity to meet this world-famous troupe. Back on board Le Soleal set sail for the Japan’s mainland west coast.  
Le Soleal
 
 | Meals: B L D

Day 12:  Noshiro/Aomori | Ancient Caldera Lake
Disembark in Noshiro and head to Towada-Hachimantai National Park, passing en route through the panoramic mountain plateau region of Hachimantai, noted as a UNESCO World Heritage region. Pause at the Great Drum House to witness the drums used in the Tsuzureko Shrine Festival. Then, hike or take a boat ride at the ancient caldera of Lake Towada, formed by the eruption of a volcano. For the more in-depth nature seekers, you may choose a trekking excursion to Juniko Lake, accompanied by one of our naturalists and a National Park nature guide. Later this afternoon, re-board your vessel in Aomori.  
Le Soleal
 
 
| Meals: B L D

Day 13:  Otaru | Historic Canal
Arrive in Hokkaido, Japan’s northernmost island. Shortly after lunch, disembark in Otaru, a picturesque city known for its canal, well-preserved architecture, handicrafts, sake distilleries and stunning views of Mount Tengu. You may opt to take a historical and cultural tour of the city, once a prosperous fishing village. At the impressively crafted “Herring Mansion,” learn the history of the prominent Aoyama family. Afterward, discover Otaru’s storied glassmaking and visit a sake distillery, where you may sample its rice wine. End with a visit to the city’s historic canal; once filled with fishing barges, it is now lined with museums and shops. Or, choose to visit Mount Tengu by gondola, taking in panoramic views of Otaru Port and Ishikari Bay. During a nature walk, you may see the 100-year-old cherry tree. Then, visit the Tengu House, where nearly 700 goblin masks from throughout Japan are exhibited. After your descent back to the city, partake in a hands-on glassmaking workshop and head to see the famous canal. Spend the evening in port in Otaru.
Le Soleal
 | Meals: B L D

Day 14:  Depart Sapporo
After breakfast, transfer to the airport and board your homebound flight.  Meals: B

 Le Soleal

14 Days from $15,995 per person (was $18,995)
Limited to 199 guests
May 30 - June 12, 2019

Tokyo Post-Tour Extension 

DAY 1: Arrive Tokyo. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant and check in to your hotel with time to unwind. Conrad Tokyo | L

DAY 2: Visit the Tsukiji Outer Fish Market and Meiji Jingu shrine or the Hakone ropeway. Then, cruise Lake Ashi, followed by a puzzle box-making experience. Conrad Tokyo | Meals: B L

DAY 3: Visit the Asakusa District and the Shunkaen Bonsai Museum, or visit Asakusa and the Edo Tokyo Museum with a glass-cutting experience. Join fellow guests for a farewell reception and dinner. 
Conrad Tokyo 
| Meals: B L

DAY 4: Transfer to the airport to depart Tokyo, or continue on to your next destination. Meals: B

in association/Abercrombie & Kent


Condé Nast Traveler Award
Resorts & Charted Courses

"World's Top Travel Specialists"
SALLIE MASSIE for Destination MONACO
Four-Time Award Recipient - Condé Nast Traveler

Condé Nast Traveler Award
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