Ponant New Zealand cruises get the Green light


Well this could be the best Christmas present ever for the New Zealand Travel and Tourism industry. Luxury Expedition line Ponant Cruises have received the Green Light from the NZ Government to commence the remainder of their New Zealand season from 08th Feb 2021.

Ponant are a boutique luxury cruise line that operate a beautiful fleet of modern purpose built expedition yachts. A few of our team travelled on Le Laperouse in March of this year during her last season’s visit to our shores and we became fast fans of this amazing luxury brand.

What can you expect on board Ponant Le Laperouse?
Beautifully appointed state rooms and suites with that European chic design element throughout. Staterooms are spacious, light and airy and suites even come with Butler service!

The dining is a highlight, with beautiful French cuisine, fresh flavours and a delightful laid back ambience onboard that puts you in to immediate relaxed mode! There are no stuffy formal nights, but our group still made an effort and dressed nicely for dinner. After all it’s holiday time so what better excuse to drag out the glad rags!

We love the casual al fresco dining on the rear deck around the plunge pool, a sort of kiwi barbeque but with table service, great wine and no burned snags! We also love the main dining restaurant which has brilliant views and offers a choice of indoor or outdoor seating, weather dependent.

The bar staff know their cocktails and with drinks included you have a great range to choose from, only paying extra for certain top shelf brands.

What does Expedition mean?
Don’t be scared off by the word Expedition! The Ponant fleet are more like luxury super yachts designed to take you around the world in comfort, to the more off beat and under populated places where the big ships cannot travel.

You will need an average level of fitness, but guidance is given on any more strenuous shore options, so you are well informed to make a personal decision if these are for you beforehand. A sense of adventure and a passion for the great outdoors are really all you need to make the most of these wonderful journeys.

Onboard there are experts that will offer informative sessions on wildlife, flora and fauna and so much more to prepare you for your day ahead. These luxury Ships carry their own fleet of zodiacs which form your transport for the included Shore excursions and will take you up close to your destination and its feathered or furry inhabitants!

Ponant zodiac excursions
Ponant Zodiac excursion

Lets take a look at the first New Zealand opportunity for 2021
New Zealand’s sub Antarctic Islands with The Chatham Islands
Departing Auckland 08th February 2021.  This 14 night Luxury Expedition Cruise direct from Auckland includes; The Chatham Islands, Bounty Islands, Antipodes Islands and the NZ Sub Antarctic Islands. A nature lover and photographers paradise these remote outposts of New Zealand will give you the best dinner party stories ever!

This departure is open for bookings now and early bookers can take advantage of a 30% Early booking discount, This discount reduces as the sailing fills up. First time Ponant guests receive a generous first time discount and past passengers will receive benefits based on their Ponant Yacht club status CLICK HERE FOR MORE DETAILS

Next to open for bookings will be the Fiordland & Snares Expedition
Roundtrip from the new cruise terminal at Lyttelton departing 22 Feb 2021. This 8 night luxury expedition voyage includes highlights: Explore the Snares, home to more nesting seabirds than the entire realm of the British Isles. View breeding populations of New Zealand fur seals and sea lions. Undertake a guided walk on the predator-free sanctuary of Ulva Island (Te Wharawhara).

Additional New Zealand voyages will be released soon, talk to our team now if you would like to pre-register for details. You can also Pre register now for the new Ponant 2021/22 Le Soleal Season

New Zealand South Island Expedition
21 November 2021 to 30 November 2021
10 days / 9 nights on board Le Soleal
From Dunedin to Wellington

New Zealand South Island Expedition
30 November 2021 to 09 December 2021
10 days / 9 nights on board Le Soleal
From Wellington to Dunedin

New Zealand Sub Antarctic Islands
09 December 2021 to 23 December 2021
15 days / 14 nights on board Le Soleal
Roundtrip From Dunedin

New Zealand Christmas & New Year Sub Antarctic Islands Expedition
23 December 2021 to 06 January 2022
15 days / 14 nights on board Le Soleal
Roundtrip From Dunedin

If you like the idea of an off the beaten track expedition, ask us about Le Laperouse departures from Cairns and Honiara, exploring Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.
This Ponant off the grid expedition series operates from 16 October 2021 to 23 December 2021 and offers a choice of 10, 11 and 15 night Expedition itineraries

Ponant also offer a season of Expedition voyages to Australia’s beautiful Kimberley region, talk to one of our HOOT Cruises consultants for details

If you have any questions, or would like to know more about Ponant Luxury Expedition cruises, feel free to talk to our friendly
Hoot Cruise Champions, we are happy to help! 
FreePhone: 0800 99 44 88

Just quote your AA SmartFuel or AA Membership Card Number at the time of final cruise payment for savings at the pump! This discount will be applied to your AA SmartFuel account within 48 hours. T&C apply

AA One Card Smartfuel
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