A new class of ultra-luxury sailing expeditions will reach Australia’s spectacular Kimberley coast in 2023 when le Ponant makes its debut.
With the March 2023 debut of its iconic, three-masted sailing yacht, Le Ponant, French luxury cruising brand Ponant is pushing the boundaries of expedition travel, bringing 'barefoot luxury' adventuring to the Kimberley region of Australia.
Aboard small luxury expedition ship Le Ponant will be a total of just 32 passengers per journey (and a 1:1 staff-to-passenger ratio), exploring the wild beauty of Australia's 12,000km Kimberley coast: the Hunter River, the 100-metre King George Falls (one of Western Australia's most outstanding spectacles), Mitchell Falls, Montgomery Falls, Montgomery Reef (known as part of the 'Humpback Highway') and Horizontal Falls.
Exploration enters another dimension aboard Le Ponant. With fully flexible itineraries daily, and no predetermined destinations, guests have real freedom to explore in barefoot luxury. Activities are determined by the captain and expedition leader each day, focusing on the culture and heritage of Australia's First Nations Peoples as well as accommodating the season and the enormous tides of the region, to create the best possible experience for guests.
Together with Paspaley, guests will be treated to a spectacular scenic flight over the Kimberley landscape aboard Paspaley's Grumman Mallard flying boat to or from embarkation/ disembarkation points in Broome, Kununurra, and Kuri Bay as well as accessing an exclusive tour of Paspaley pearl farm.
Barefoot travel, environment in balance at Ponant
Ponant's commitment to balancing travel with environmentally responsible tourism dates back to the French company's origins in 1988. And the credentials of the company's small capacity luxury expedition ship, Le Ponant, are without exception. Aboard Le Ponant, periods of sailing will rely on wind power only; there is an array of non-motorised water-based activities and disembarkations feature individuals or small groups on four state-of-the-art Zodiac boats. Aboard Le Ponant, discover the true spirit of sailing through this incredible ancient landscape, experiencing the scents and sounds with your senses fully awakened and alert. Enjoy zodiac outings and landings which offer complete flexibility that are accompanied by four expedition leaders and naturalists.
Exploring the Kimberley by Zodiac ©PONANT Nick Rains
Refined, elegant design at Ponant
Refined design by French design studio Jean-Phillipe Nuel - reflective of Ponant's French sensibility for luxury - is evidenced throughout the luxury vessel. The striking lines, the superior quality of the carefully-selected materials, the ingenious combinations of materials and textures exude a feeling of timelessness. Spaces are free from embellishments; rather, there is subtle yet powerful unified design in the common areas and staterooms. Muted tones, off whites, taupes and caviar greys grace the luxury yacht's 16 studios and staterooms, lounges, wellness spaces and Diamant restaurant.
Le Ponant Stateroom -©PONANT Tamar Sarkissian
Exclusive itineraries with Ponant
Ponant's exclusive itineraries include expeditions to the Northern and Southern Kimberley as well as to the breathtaking Rowley Shoals, known as one of the world's most spectacular diving and snorkelling locations. Expeditions to Northern Kimberley aboard Le Ponant set sail from Darwin, Kununurra or Broome with departures from April to September 2023. Southern Kimberley sailing expeditions depart from Kununurra or Broome between April to September 2023. An eight-night Rowley Shoals sailing expedition departs Broome on 8 & 16 September 2023 for an adventure of a lifetime exploring the Buccaneer archipelago and their secluded white sandy beaches, Collier Bay and The Lacepede Islands.