Fiordland & the Snares Expedition aboard Le Laperouse

Fiordland & the Snares Expedition aboard Le Laperouse

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PONANT invites you to set sail on an exceptional 8-day itinerary to reveal New Zealand’s Fiordland and Southern Islands. With an abundance of natural spectacles, allow yourself to be immersed in the southern islands awe-inspiring landscapes and rare fauna sanctuaries, such as the Fiordland Crested Penguin and New Zealand Fur Seals. Enjoy a sense of secluded serenity as you sail through Doubtful Sound, referred to as the ‘Sound of Silence’, and Dusky Sound, one of the most remote fiords in the New Zealand’s South West World Heritage Area, before navigating the ‘eighth wonder of the world’, Milford Sound, whose spectacular backdrop captivates even the most seasoned travellers. Watch as the dramatic beauty of the fiords change as you sail towards Ulva Island, the largest of 20 islands within Paterson Inlet, Stewart Island, and explore this haven for birds and plants with well-maintained tracks and walking trails.

Amongst the islands of the Southern Ocean, the Snares have the distinction of being the only forested group without introduced mammals, not even mice. Consequently, it is a remarkable sanctuary for wildlife boasting more nesting seabirds than the entire realm of the British Isles.

Trip Name
Fiordland & the Snares Expedition aboard Le Laperouse
Vessel Type: Luxury Length: 127 metres Passenger Capacity: 92 cabins Built: 2017/2018 Featuring innovative and environmentally-friendly equipment, elegantly designed cabins, spacious suites with large windows, and lounge areas that open onto the outside, this new limited-capacity yacht boasting just 92 cabins and suites will offer you a truly unique cruising experience. Aboard this ship that flies the French flag, you will experience the incomparable pleasure of an intimate cruise, with the possibility of exploring an ever-increasing range of destinations in an ethnic-chic ambiance with luxury service. Experience a luxurious setting where the accent is on authenticity and passion for travel. RESTAURANTS As it is an essential part of French culture, gastronomy will naturally have pride of place aboard this new ship. Through its two restaurants, Le Lapérouse will invite you on a journey to elegance and epicureanism. In a relaxed atmosphere, a first dining area located on Deck 3 and able to seat 70 will serve grilled meats daily, along with a variety of salads and desserts. To the back of Deck 4, you will find a 260 m² panoramic restaurant which can accommodate all of our passengers in a single sitting. Designed differently to that on our other ships, this dining area, which opens onto the outside, will have a buffet of salads, desserts and cheeses at your disposal. Our discreet and attentive crew will provide table service for hot meals. PUBLIC AREAS Like Le Boréal and its sisterships, Le Lapérouse has many common areas that are designed and equipped to meet all of your needs while preserving the intimacy of each passenger. A 140 m² reception area includes: A reception/concierge desk, An excursions desk, The ship’s administrative services, The sales office, manned by our Guest Relations Officer, Our 50 m² boutique which sells clothing, jewellery, beauty products, postcards and various accessories, Toilets accessible to passengers with reduced mobility. A new hydraulic platform with adjustable height provides: Easier boarding than on any other cruise ship, Easier Zodiac embarkation and disembarkation for expeditions, Easier access to the sea for swimming and practising various water sports such as kayaking or paddle-boarding. A pool deck offering: A pool with a panoramic view, equipped with a counter-current swimming system, A pleasant solarium, An outdoor bar and lounge with armchairs and sofas. A 200 m² main lounge which can accommodate all of our passengers to share convivial moments and to host activities organised during the day or evening. Lastly, a theatre that seats 188, equipped with: The latest sound and lighting technology, A LED wall as the stage backdrop, for the projection of high-resolution images and videos.


Day 1 - Day 1. Lyttelton, New Zealand. Embarkation.
Lyttelton is a colourful town, home to a community of nearly 3,000people, brimming with bohemian artists, cafés, quirky shops andrestaurants. This small town has re-invented itself as one of the mostcreative communities in the Christchurch region. Le Lapérouse will bealongside the wharf in Lyttelton where your voyage will begin.
Day 2 - Day 2. At Sea.
Day 3 - Day 3. Dusky Sound & Doubtful Sound, New Zealand.
One of the most remote fiords in the New Zealand’s South West WorldHeritage Area, Dusky Sound was named by Captain James Cook in1773. Dusky Sound is rich in flora and fauna, both New Zealand FurSeals and one of the world’s rarest penguins – the Fiordland CrestedPenguin – can be seen on the small islets at the entrance to the fiord.Doubtful Sound is the deepest of the fiords with a maximum depth of421 metres. It contains three distinct ‘arms’ and several outstandingwaterfalls in the area from Deep Cove to the open ocean. Often referredto as the ‘Sound of Silence’, there is a secluded serenity that surroundsDoubtful Sound in contrast with the better-known Milford Sound.Le Lapérouse will spend time navigating around Secretary Islandthrough both Thompson and Doubtful. You can enjoy the spectacularscenery from the outer decks of the ship as you sail through the fiords.If weather permits, you may have the opportunity to explore the fiordson a Zodiac® excursion
Day 4 - Day 4. Milford Sound, New Zealand.
Arguably New Zealand’s best-known destination and described byRudyard Kipling as the ‘eighth wonder of the world’, Milford Sound is aplace of dramatic beauty. Its vertiginous peaks rise from the dark watersof the sound creating a spectacular backdrop that captivates even themost seasoned travellers. Milford Sound is breathtaking in any weatherand after rain the two permanent waterfalls of Stirling and Lady Bowenmultiply with magnificent effect. You can view the spectacular sceneryfrom the outer decks of Le Lapérouse. If weather permits, you may alsohave the opportunity to explore the fiord on a Zodiac® excursion.
Day 5 - Day 5. The Snares, New Zealand Subantarctic Islands.
Amongst the islands of the Southern Ocean, the Snares have thedistinction of being the only forested group without introducedmammals, not even mice. Over 2 million Sooty Shearwaters breedhere in the summer months. Four species of Albatross are also listed asbreeding on the Snares with 35,000 endemic Snares crested penguins.If time and weather permit, you will have the opportunity to explorethe coastal environments and view the prolific wildlife on a Zodiac®excursion.
Day 6 - Day 6. Ulva Island (Stewart Island), New Zealand.
Ulva Island is a haven for many species of birds and plants that arerare or have died out on the mainland of New Zealand. Bird speciesregularly encountered include; the flightless Stewart Island Weka,South Island Saddleback, Yellowhead and Stewart Island Robin.Ulva Island is not only a bird enthusiast’s paradise, it is also one ofthe few offshore islands with a largely undisturbed podocarp forest.Well-maintained tracks offer easy walking for most people, providinga unique opportunity to see rare birds and plants at close quarters in asafe environment.
Day 7 - Day 7. Timaru, New Zealand.
Located at the Southern end of the Cantebury plains, midway betweenChristchurch and Dunedin, Timaru is the second largest city inCanterbury. Archaeologists have suggested that Māori iwi (tribes) werepermanently settled in the district before 1400 AD. The area includesover 500 sites with traces of Māori rock art, particularly in the rockoverhangs and caves of the Opuha and Opihi river valleys, to the westof modern day Timaru. The city’s excellent museum has moa-hunterartefacts and an abundance of whaling relics and the art gallery holdsthe third largest public art collection in the South Island. Join yourexpedition team and local guides for a tour showcasing the history,culture and natural beauty of the region.
Day 8 - Day 8. Lyttelton, New Zealand. Disembarkation.
Le Lapérouse will be alongside the wharf and disembarkation willcommence after breakfast.
Day 9 - Please Note:
Itineraries are subject to change.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
22-02-202101-03-2021Array Array5,330Deluxe Stateroom
22-02-202101-03-2021Array Array5,380Prestige Stateroom Deck 4
22-02-202101-03-2021Array Array0Privilege Suite
22-02-202101-03-2021Array Array0Prestige Suite Deck 6
22-02-202101-03-2021Array Array0Deluxe Suite
22-02-202101-03-2021Array Array0Prestige Stateroom Deck 6
22-02-202101-03-2021Array Array0Owner's Suite
22-02-202101-03-2021Array Array0Prestige Suite Deck 5
22-02-202101-03-2021Array Array0Prestige Stateroom Deck 5
22-02-202101-03-2021Array Array0Grand Deluxe Suite


    • Sail New Zealand’s best known destination, Milford Sound, with its dramatic beauty and vertiginous peaks rising from the dark waters.
    • Discover the rich flora and fauna of Dusky Sound. With New Zealand Fur Seals and one of the world’s rarest penguins – The Fiordland Crested.
    • Navigate Doubtful Sound’s three distinct ‘arms’ and several outstanding waterfalls, from Deep Cove to the open ocean.
    • Visit the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Te Wāhipounamu – South West New Zealand and the Snares.
    • Explore the Snares, home to more nesting seabirds than the entire realm of the British Isles.
    • Undertake a guided walk on the predator-free sanctuary of Ulva Island.
    • In Timaru discover centuries old Māori tradition, culture and history at over 500 sites, dating back to 1400 AD