Arrive in Bali, where you are met and transferred to your beachfront hotel. Tonight, join fellow guests and A&K’s expedition team for a welcome dinner.
Bali’s rich culture, spiritual influence and vibrant geology play out across the ‘Island of the Gods’. Enjoy your choice of excursion, with options that include exploring Bali’s central highlands, an area famous for its stunning lakes and hills. Visit the Royal Temple of Mengwi, reach Mount Batukaru and enjoy a trek through the picture-perfect Jatiluwih Rice Terraces. Alternately, enjoy an insightful day visiting Lake Batur and Kehen Temple, or drive to Bukit Peninsula to visit Uluwatu Temple and some beaches. Each experience includes a lunch of delightful Balinese specialities. Return to your luxury resort and enjoy the evening at leisure.
After breakfast and a morning at leisure, depart your hotel for an immersive afternoon tour of lively Denpasar. Visit Jagatnatha Temple, which is dedicated to the supreme Hindu god Sanghyang Widi Wasa. Admire its seven-tiered padmasana (lotus) throne. Shop the Pasar Kreneng Market and see the unique Balinese architecture of Jero Kuta Palace. Later, board your luxury expedition cruiser, which you enjoy for the next 14 nights.
UNESCO-designated Komodo National Park is one of the world’s greatest natural treasures, not just for its protected Komodo dragons but also for its striking coastal terrain and spectacular marine ecosystem. Explore the park and get to know its rare and fierce inhabitants. Pink sands, hills, and deep valleys – the park’s dramatic landscape has been formed by ancient volcanic activity. It sets the stage for genuinely wondrous marine discoveries and some of the world’s best dive sites. Conditions permitting, partake in water activities that include kayaking and swimming, and snorkelling and scuba diving.
Today, choose from three included excursions, opting for a kayak paddle and beach landing or a Zodiac tour with your A&K naturalist, each with additional opportunities for swimming. You may also choose a guided trek in the park to see Komodo dragons in their habitat.
The Alor archipelago is stunning with its white-sand beaches and clear bays, and today you explore its namesake island. Largely uninhabited, this ‘Island of a Thousand Mokos’ (ancient kettledrums) boasts many splendours, including the unique culture of its highland people and a world-class underwater paradise. Choose a visit with the indigenous Takpala in their traditional village, followed by time in Kalabahi to explore a local museum and the town market. Alternatively, and conditions permitting, don your scuba gear for a remarkable diving adventure in the Alor archipelago, known for its pristine waters and variety of brilliant sea creatures.
Recharge from the last four days of adventure with a relaxing day aboard your luxury expedition ship. Sample the variety of onboard programming, and enjoy ample opportunities for lectures and informal conversation with the members of your expedition team.
The legendary and rarely visited Spice Islands boast coral reefs, lush jungles and volcanic peaks. Enjoy two days of exploration, beginning in Maluku’s Banda archipelago. Conditions permitting, choose to kayak the harbour or snorkel amid a coral-covered reef. You may also opt to explore Banda on a walking tour with a local guide, discovering the eclectic architecture, fascinating culture and history. The next day, indulge in the beauty of the postcard-perfect tropical paradise of the Kei Islands with a leisurely day at one of its endless white-sand beaches and, conditions permitting, opportunities to swim and snorkel in its rich waters.
West Papua is known for its natural scenery and dive sites, and impressive Triton Bay is the star of the show. Among the three regions considered by marine biologists to be the epicentre of the Coral Triangle, Triton Bay is home to more fish and coral species than anywhere else on the planet – among them pygmy sea horses, marlin, sweetlips, Triton Bay walking sharks and gorgeous soft corrals. Experience a Zodiac excursion through rainforest-capped Karst Islands.
On this day spent at sea, balance your time between engaging with new friends and lectures given by your expedition team.
Arrive in Agats, the capital of Papua's Asmat Region, long fabled as the ancient realm of cannibals, headhunters and Asmat warriors. Dubbed the 'Land of a Thousand Cultures', the region harbours some 44 tribes wholly isolated from the modern world and more than 700 languages. Opt to experience a traditional war canoe greeting and make time to browse artisan crafts of the Asmat people, or choose a guided walking tour of Agats.
Unwind and enjoy a day at sea, perhaps with time at the pool or spa or on your private deck. If time allows after clearing customs, arrive where Captain Hook did on a Thursday in 1770: Thursday Island, the smallest of the Torres Strait Islands on Australia’s most northern frontier. A once-thriving pearl-diving industry has since disappeared, but Thursday Island remains intimately tied to and shaped by rich Asian cultures, traditions and cuisine.
Soak in your experience with unhurried time at sea, sharing in conversations with your expedition team and favourite moments at dinner with friends.
The northernmost resort island on the Great Barrier Reef, rugged Lizard Island is a national park dominated by mountainous terrain, glistening beaches and dazzling reefs for snorkelling and diving. The island is sacred to the Dingaal people, who hold hunting ceremonies here. Choose to relax on a secluded beach and swim the Blue Lagoon or join a guided nature walk, where you may spy prolific birdlife and the goanna lizard for which the island is named. Alternatively, and conditions permitting, snorkel and scuba dive amid the staggering diversity of Australia’s incomparable, UNESCO-listed Great Barrier Reef.
Bid farewell to your crew, expedition team and fellow guests before disembarking in Cairns, gateway to Queensland. Transfer to the airport for your flight home or continue on your post-tour extension.