Coral Expeditions I<br>11 Night Cape York and Arnhem Land<br>Cairns to Darwin

Coral Expeditions I
11 Night Cape York and Arnhem Land
Cairns to Darwin

Ship: Coral Expeditions I
Cruise Line: Coral Expeditions
Departures:  17 March 2019
Duration: 11 Nights
Ports: Cairns, Lizard Island, Stanley Island, Davey Reef, Forbes Island, Magra Island, Cape York, Thursday Island, Nhulunbuy, Elcho Island, Liverpool River, Maningrida, Cobourg Peninsula, Bathurst Island, Melville Island, Darwin
Airport gateway (Arrival) : Cairns
Airport gateway (Departure) : Darwin

The Cape York and Arnhem Land expedition is a fascinating tapestry that immerses keen explorers in the very best of Australia’s northern coastline.

Guests onboard will explore some of the finest locations of the World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef, enjoy sunrise at the very ‘Tip of Australia’ at Cape York, before venturing into the remote Arnhem Land Coast and the rarely visited Tiwi Islands. Join us aboard Coral Expeditions I in Cairns for a remarkable 11-night voyage of discovery to Darwin, visiting otherwise inaccessible locations and developing a rich understanding of the culture of the traditional owners of the Torres Strait and Arnhem Land.

Here, the mighty estuarine or saltwater crocodile is indeed King of the Wild and the waters of the Arafura Sea are alive with a profusion of marine and bird life. At the start of your expedition, choose to swim and snorkel in the clear tropical waters of the Great Barrier Reef. Explore the pristine coral gardens of the northern reef and tour the fascinating Lizard Island Research Station to learn how scientists are preserving the Reef for future generations. Savour a glass of champagne as the sun rises over the northern ‘Tip of Australia’ on the Cape York Peninsula and discover the interesting World War II history of the Torres Strait Islands.

As you travel West, you’ll venture ashore to meet cultural artisans in some of the most remote villages and renowned galleries of Australia, and meet the artists who have their paintings exhibited in the famous galleries of the world, including the Louvre in Paris. Learn of the fascinating Macassan traders of the 17th century as we cruise the Arnhem Land coast before experiencing the friendly welcome and warm hospitality of the rarely-visited Tiwi Islanders as they share with us their ancient culture and traditional lifestyles. Visiting both Bathurst and Melville Islands, you’ll gain a rich understanding of how life differs in these areas, and how the culture has evolved to work as one with nature. A full day sailing in the remote Coburg Peninsula also offers a myriad opportunities to spot bird and marine life.

Expedition highlights:

• Be immersed in the world’s oldest surviving culture in Arnhem Land
• Spend a full day exploring the rugged and beautiful Coburg Peninsula and her huge variety of sea and bird life
• With a local guide, visit the remote and culturally rich Tiwi Islands of Bathurst and Melville
• Learn about Indigenous art at Elcho Island, Nhulunbuy and Maningrida Art Centres
• Stand on the very tip of Australia at Cape York for a champagne sunrise
• Explore historic Cooktown and learn of Australia’s history in her Museum
• Visit Thursday Island and learn about the cultures of the Torres Strait
• Explore Lizard Island and the northern reaches of the Great Barrier Reef
• Discover the Arnhem Land coast, once the trading ground of the Macassan people from Sulawesi
• Enjoy a gourmet Aussie Beach BBQ as the sun sets over the Arafura Sea



Board Coral Expeditions I at Cairns Cruise Liner Terminal at 10.00am for an 11:00am departure > enjoy lunch on board and a chance to meet your fellow travellers as we set sail northwards > this evening join guests and the friendly crew as we enjoy the Captain’s welcome drinks and sit down to the first of many delicious dinners



Explore secluded Lizard Island, one of the most beautiful islands on the Queensland Coast > venture into the crystal clear waters for swimming and snorkelling or take a walk along the white sand beach > the more energetic may join our guides on a walk to ‘Cook’s Look’ on the island’s peak and the highest lookout on this part of the reef > from this high point, Captain Cook was able to navigate a safe passage back through the treacherous waters after repairing the Endeavour near Cooktown over 200 years ago > a photographer’s delight, the views from the lookout over the World Heritage-listed reef and surrounding tropical islands are magnificent



Visit Stanley Island in the Flinders Group > view the Endaen Aboriginal rock art gallery that depicts sailing ships of the last century; this is a unique art site seldom visited due to its isolated location > at Davey Reef and Cay we enjoy swimming and snorkelling and observe the large seabird rookery



Enjoy the day exploring historic Forbes Island, its reef provides some fantastic swimming and snorkelling opportunities > visit Magra Island for beachcombing and bird watching > enjoy the tropical sunset



Venture ashore at Cape York as the sun rises over the ‘Tip’ on Australia’s northernmost point > sip champagne and welcome the new day > anchoring at Thursday Island, learn of the history of European settlement and the large pearling fleets > take the opportunity to observe the distinctly different cultures of the Torres Strait Islanders and the Aboriginals whilst we tour the island > visit the Gab Titui Cultural Centre where the children perform traditional dances > at Horn Island we discover the significance of the Torres Strait during World War II > tonight, regain land legs as we stay overnight at the Gateway Torres Strait Resort on Horn Island



Board our short charter flight across the Gulf of Carpentaria to Nhulunbuy (Gove) > upon arrival, visit the Yirrkala Art Centre > take time this afternoon to discover this frontier town before visiting Nambarra Art Centre to see some fine examples of local artwork > this evening we enjoy a relaxing stay at the Walkabout Lodge in Gove



Rejoining our ship, we cruise through the narrow ‘Hole in the Wall’ > our expert Expedition Team will share with you the fascinating history of the Macassan traders and early discoverers of the Arnhem Land coast > tonight, enjoy a gourmet Aussie beach BBQ as the sun spectacularly sets over the Arafura Sea



The friendly locals of Elcho Island proudly welcome us to their community this morning > gain insight into their culture and meet some of the local artists who have their unique art exhibited in the famous art galleries of the world, including the Louvre > consider attending the local church service to share in the local culture



Anchor in the mighty Liverpool River > travel ashore to explore the Maningrida Art Centre, Museum and local ’boutique’, where hand painted clothing and fabrics are offered for sale > join the Expedition Team on an Xplorer tour of the river before rejoining our small ship



Discover the Cobourg Peninsula today > join local guides in Port Essington, famous for its failed Victoria Settlement > explore and learn about the ruins > visit the Ranger’s Interpretation Centre at Black Point



Visit remote Bathurst and Melville Islands > with traditional Tiwi people as our guides, we learn of the unique cultures and visit their fascinating art centre > our Tiwi hosts welcome us with a cultural performance and basket-weaving exhibition before we join them for a traditional Australian afternoon tea of damper and billy tea > tonight farewell new-found friends as we enjoy the Captain’s farewell drinks



Arrive into Darwin, the capital of the Northern Territory and gateway to the ‘Top End’ > disembark at 8.00am > post cruise transfers are included

* Ports of call may vary based on itinerary and departure dates selected


Cabin Pricing

* All prices quoted are PER PERSON in British Pounds and include taxes, fees and port expenses (if applicable).
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The picturesque town of Yorkey's, dominated by its dramatic headland, is your gateway to Cairns, one of Australia's hottest vacation destinations, which basks in tropical sunshine with balmy breezes that waft in from Trinity Bay.

The city's graceful, tree-lined esplanade was once the gateway to the gold fields of North Queensland. Cairns boasts three of Australia's great natural wonders: the Great Barrier Reef and 16 miles of superb beaches that stretch to the north of the city to the famed Marlin Coast. Inland lies the immense Daintree National Park. Discover the rainbow of sea life, marvel at the rain forest or relax along the long stretch of sunny coastline.

Country - Australia
Distance from port to City - 17kms
Distance from port to Airport - 10kms
Currency - Australian Dollars (AUD)

Places of Interest
Great Barrier Reef, Daintree Rainforest, Kuranda

Lizard Island

Lizard Island is an idyllic retreat second to none. Australia's northernmost resort, Lizard is located right on the spectacular Great Barrier Reef, fringed with colourful coral reefs and 24 powdery white beaches. It is little wonder that this tranquil escape has won a host of prestigious national and international awards for excellence. Lizard truly is one of a kind.

Country - Australia
Distance from port to City - 0kms
Distance from port to Airport - N/A
Currency - Australian Dollars (AUD)

Places of Interest
Great Barrier Reef, Beaches

Stanley Island

Visit Stanley Island in the Flinders group to view the Endaen Aboriginal rock art gallery depicting sailing ships of the last century. This is a unique art site seldom visited unless on adventure cruise excursions due to its isolated location… At Davey Reef and Cay go swimming and snorkelling and observe the large seabird rookery.

Country - Australia
Distance from port to City - 0kms
Distance from Port to Airport - 400kms
Currency - Australian Dollars (AUD)

Places of Interest
Endaen Aboriginal Rock Art Gallery, Davey Reef

Davey Reef

Forbes Island

Enjoy the day exploring this historical island. Time for swimming, snorkelling, diving and reef fishing

Country - Australia
Distance from port to City - 0kms
Distance from Port to Airport -  N/A
Currency - Australian Dollars (AUD)

Places of Interest
Great Barrier Reef

Magra Island

Cape York

Beginning at historic Cooktown, Cape York Peninsula, one of the world's last accessible wilderness areas, remains a land of few people and prolific wildlife. The fishing is amazing, the scenery magnificent and the culture a fusion of many. Visit ancient Aboriginal cultural sites, head to premier sports fishing grounds or go on a 4WD adventure you won't forget past towering termite nests, fast-flowing rivers and remote camping and wilderness lodges.

Country - Australia
Distance from port to City - 0kms
Distance from port to Airport - 1003kms
Currency - Australian Dollars (AUD)

Places of Interest
Cape York Peninsula, Cooktown, Pristine Beaches, Rainforests

Thursday Island

Thursday Island is the administrative centre for the Torres Strait islands which have been part of Queensland since 1872. "T.I." as it's usually known, is the most popular of the Torres Strait Islands. It's only just overthree square km in area and 39km off the top of Cape York. The strait's population of 25 000 live on more than 20 islands, and is engaged mostly in fishing, prawning and a declining pearling industry. Thursday Island is now identified as one of the last great frontiers in Australia.

Country - Australia
Distance from port to City - 0kms
Distancefrom Port to Airport - 8kms
Currency - Australian Dollars (AUD)

Places of Interest
Green Hill Fort, Horn and Badu Islands, Quetta Memorial Museum


Elcho Island

Within minutes of arriving on board M/V Funchal you’ll find yourself settling in and beginning to feel right at home.

Your bags will be delivered to your cabin door by one of Portuscale Cruises’ friendly and efficient porters, enabling

you to start unpacking even before the vessel sails. Inside, you will find an information pack, safety directions and

the name of your personal cabin steward or stewardess, who will visit twice-daily to make up your room every

morning and turn down your bed at night.

Every one of M/V Funchal’s cabins includes its own en suite bathroom with a wall-mounted hairdryer, a large

mirror and complimentary Portuscale Cruises toiletries, a bar fridge, a safe to protect your small valuables, a flatscreen

television, and a desk and/or bedside chest of drawers. Your cabin may also include a padded chair, a

sofa and perhaps a coffee table, depending on the accommodation category you choose. A direct-dial telephone

allows you to call ashore or elsewhere on the ship in privacy and comfort.

With the vessel’s 241 cabins dispersed over six separate decks, you won’t find crowds in the corridors, queues

or congestion in the ship’s many public areas.

For your convenience, two restaurants are open at mealtimes: the large, open-plan Restaurant Lisboa and its

smaller, more intimate neighbour, Restaurant Coimbra. Both are served from a state-of-the-art galley designed

to allow the preparation of all meals from scratch. Even the bread is baked on board, arriving at the table so

fresh that often it’s still warm from the oven. For outdoor dining to take advantage of fine, warm weather while

at sea, there is also an open buffet area aft on the Navigators Deck. Whether your cruise lasts only a few days

or stretches over several weeks or more, the array of international cuisine laid out for breakfast, lunch, afternoon

tea, dinner and supper is ever-changing. You will not find a dinner menu repeated, no matter how many nights

your cruise spans at sea. If you’re feeling adventurous, this is an ideal opportunity to try foods you might never

have the opportunity to order on land: guinea fowl or quail, monkfish or salted cod, custard tarts or sorbet. It’s

also an excellent chance to ask your mâitre d’ or restaurant wine steward’s advice on pairing a white, red or rosé

with your main course.

Liverpool River



Latitude: 12°2'S
Longitude: 134°13'E

Maningrida is a self-governing indigenous community in the heart of the Arnhem Land. The township dates back to just after WWII, with migration into Maningrida reflected in linguistic variety and cultural diversity evidenced by the different religious ceremonies and multitude of artistic forms in design, music and dance.

Recognised nationally and internationally, this is one of the powerhouse art areas of central Arnhem Land. Bark painting, pandanus weaving and wood carvings - especially the Mimi spirits - are all distinctive features of the artistic endeavour. The excellent Djiom Museum is a highlight, showcasing the richness of the ceremonial apparel and intricacies of the material culture.

Cobourg Peninsula

Bathurst Island

Melville Island

Country - Australia
Distance from port to City - 0kms
Distance from Por to Airport - 0kms
Currency - Australian Dollars (AUD)

Places of Interest


Darwin is a modern city (largely because its previous incarnation was blown down by a cyclone) with sparkling buildings and broad streets. Its fortunes are built on the sugar and fruits from the plantations and forests, which enfold the city. Study Aboriginal art and pearl fishing in the city’s museums.

Country - Australia
Distance from port to City - 0kms
Distance from port to Airport - 11kms
Currency - Australian Dollars (AUD)

Places of Interest
Crocodylus Park, Museum of Art and Science, Adelaide River



Coral Expeditions I Cabin Info

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Cruise line info

Coral Expeditions

Coral Expeditions

Welcome to Coral Expeditions -

Coral Expeditions is Australia’s leading small ship and expedition cruise line, with an unrivalled worldwide reputation for cruising excellence built over more than 30 years. Join them on award-winning 3,4 and 7 night Great Barrier Reef cruises or discover Australia’s ancient outback on an expedition to the remarkable Kimberley region or Cape York and Arnhem Land. Venture further afield into the South Pacific to discover mysterious Papua New Guinea, the exotic Spice Islands and Raja Ampat, explore the magical island cultures of Melanesia and savour the scenic beauty of ‘the land of the long white cloud’, New Zealand.


Ship info

Coral Expeditions I

Coral Expeditions I is a twin-hulled boutique catamaran designed for maximum stability and guest comfort. Accommodating just 50 guests, Coral Expeditions I offers the facilities of a larger ship, yet retains the atmosphere of a private yacht.

Coral Expeditions I is fully equipped for the ultimate expedition cruising experience in Australian coastal waters. Australian flagged, registered and staffed, the ship was purpose-built for cruising in our region and is the ideal size to access the very best parts of Western Australia’s remarkable Kimberley region, the northern coastlines of Cape York and Arnhem Land and the World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef.

The 25 onboard rooms are bathed in natural light, with a fresh and modern decor creating a breezy feel. You can choose between double and twin bedded rooms, each fully equipped with a spacious private ensuite, air conditioning and ample storage space.

The ship’s forward lounge is a great place to relax and enjoy the scenery in air-conditioned comfort, and features a comprehensive reference library and plasma screens. The Sun Deck at the rear of the top deck is another popular place to relax and take in the panoramic views.

Meals are served in the modern dining room, and with space for all guests to dine during one sitting and no assigned seating, meal times are a great opportunity to get to know your fellow travellers.

Coral Expeditions I operates an open bridge policy, allowing you to spend time with the Captain and his maritime crew as we cruise. Follow our progression on the ship’s charts and chat with Captain, or simply sit back, relax and enjoy the scenery. Coral Expeditions I is fitted with state-of-the-art safety and navigation equipment, and wireless internet facilities.

Your Onboard Facilities

  • Sun Deck with sun lounges
  • Wireless internet available for laptops, PDAs and onboard computer
  • Fully stocked cocktail bar
  • Spacious, modern Dining Room
  • Forward Lounge
  • Gift shop
  • Open Bridge
  • Comprehensive reference library
  • Phone and fax facilities
  • Limited laundry facilities
  • SCUBA diving department (selected itineraries)

Coral Expeditions I Deck plans

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