Gems of South-East Asia
- Staterooms & Suites
- Port of call & excursions
- Bloomberg Questions for PONANT
- A la carte Options
Staterooms & Suites
In May 2011, l'Austral joined PONANT's fleet. This superb mega-yacht with 132 cabins is the result of the expertise of the Italian Fincantieri shipyard and French sophistication, as interpreted by designer Jean-Philippe Nuel. L'Austral remains faithful to our philosophy - to create a unique atmosphere, a subtle blend of luxury, intimacy and well-being.
A sleek silhouette softened by elegantly smooth contours and large, arched windows opening up to the sea and the light: so many features come together to give L’Austral her distinctive shape. Precious materials, discreet elegance and a perfect balance between chic and casual, combine to make you feel as if you are on your own private yacht. A design blending tradition and innovation, where a nautical mood has been subtly recreated. A welcoming atmosphere of relaxed sophistication revolves around shades of grey, taupe, white and ivory enlivened by touches of cinnamon, caramel and tan.. So many personal touches create the spirit of a “private yacht.”
You will encounter unique itineraries, calls inaccessible to large ships, chic and elegant yacht-like ambiance, refined and personalized service as well as gastronomic cuisine.
Port of call & excursions
Benoa (Bali)Emabarkation 03/10/2017 from 13H00 to 15H00 . Departure 03/10/2017 at 17H00 .
If it's a taste of exotic authenticity you're after, prepare to be spell-bound by the island of Bali, tucked away in the heart of the Indonesian archipelago. The beauty and diversity of its landscapes, the depth and richness of its cultural heritage and the plethora of activities on offer here make Bali a little slice of heaven on Earth. The island's southern coast enthrals with its white sand beaches, its picturesque little fishing villages such as Benoa, and its hills patchworked with terraced rice paddies further inland. Nicknamed 'the Island of Gods' for its sumptuous temples, Bali is the beating heart of Indonesian Hinduism.
4 October 2017 - At seaArrival 04/10/2017 at 00H00 . Departure 04/10/2017 at 00H00 .
5 October 2017 - Semarang,JavaArrival 05/10/2017 at 06H00 . Departure 05/10/2017 at 21H00 .
Semarang enjoys a strategic location on the northern coast of Java, making it a cosmopolitan port town and a melting pot of Chinese, Indo-Arabic and European cultures. Before setting off to explore the region's treasures, take a tour of the old town and its smattering of old colonial buildings. Here in Indonesia's most Chinese town, don't miss a trip to the Chinatown districtﾅ If it's culture you're after, journey deeper into the green, rolling inland region, passing by volcanoes and rice paddies until you reach the royal town of Yogyakarta and one of its ancient kingdoms, the Borobudur : this Buddhist temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the world's largest temples.
6 October 2017 - At seaArrival 06/10/2017 at 00H00 . Departure 06/10/2017 at 00H00 .
7 October 2017 - Parai BeachArrival 07/10/2017 at 06H00 . Departure 07/10/2017 at 12H00 .
The Indonesian Bangka Belitung archipelago, off the eastern coast of Sumatra, is renowned for its beautiful unspoilt beaches and superb diving. Protected by immense granite rocks, Parai Beach, north-east of Bangka Island, is a tropical Eden. Once youﾒre comfortably installed in the shade of palm trees at the waterﾒs edge, youﾒll succumb to the ease and tranquillity of this picture-postcard setting.
8 October 2017 - SingaporeArrival 08/10/2017 at 09H00 . Departure 08/10/2017 at 18H00 .
Nicknamed the Garden City, Singapore stretches across Malaysia's southern-most region. Experience the vibrant hustle and bustle of this city-state for yourself at the Marina Bay. No too far away is the historic centre, offering up a unique smorgasbord of neoclassical buildings and contemporary towers. Decked out in topiary, the pavements of Orchard Road are also home to countless shopping centres. The colourful markets in Chinatown and Little India are the perfect opportunity to quell hunger pangs in a hawker centre, one of the city's traditional snack bars. Between the two districts, get a slice of history with a trip to the Raffles dock. It was here that Englishman Sir Raffles, the founder of the city, is said to have arrived one fateful day in January 1819.
9 October 2017 - At seaArrival 09/10/2017 at 00H00 . Departure 09/10/2017 at 00H00 .
10 October 2017 - Kuching, SarawakArrival 10/10/2017 at 06H00 . Departure 10/10/2017 at 18H00 .
On the island of Borneo, the state of Sarawak invites you to live out your dreams of adventure. The largest state in Malaysia is home to some of the oldest forest on the planet and we can easily understand why this little corner of paradise inspired Somerset Maugham, the British writer and traveller, to write one of his novels - The Casuarina Tree. We invite you to follow in the footsteps of the writer and set off to discover the colonial capital of the State: Kuching, which is known as ”Cat City” in Malay, where a feline languor does indeed permeate this tantalizingly elusive city. Lying nonchalantly on the banks of the Sungai Sarawak, this little city is proud of its romantic past and its quaint charm and beauty.
11 October 2017 - At seaArrival 11/10/2017 at 00H00 . Departure 11/10/2017 at 00H00 .
12 October 2017 - Bandar Seri BegawanArrival 12/10/2017 at 06H00 . Departure 12/10/2017 at 20H00 .
13 October 2017 - Kota Kinabalu (Sabah Borneo)Arrival 13/10/2017 at 07H00 . Departure 13/10/2017 at 18H00 .
Located on the north-east coast of the Malaysian State of Sabah on the island of Borneo, Kota Kinabalu is an excellent jumping-off point for exploring the natural attractions of the region. It is close to Mt Kinabalu, but before you head off to climb the holy mountain check out the heart of the old city, nicknamed KK by locals. Although there isnﾒt much left of its colonial heritage, ﾠits multi-cultural restaurants, shops and friendly atmosphere is immensely appealing. Donﾒt miss a stroll along the KKﾒs busiest promenade, the colourful Waterfront.
14 October 2017 - At seaArrival 14/10/2017 at 00H00 . Departure 14/10/2017 at 00H00 .
15 October 2017 - Puerto PrincesaArrival 15/10/2017 at 06H00 . Departure 15/10/2017 at 18H00 .
Puerto Princesa, in the centre of Palawan island, is a great place for exploring many of the regionﾒs natural attractions. You wonﾒt have to go too far before donning your snorkelling kit and swimming with the abundant and richly diverse sealife: off Puerto Princesa, youﾒll enjoy the breathtaking coral islands of Honda Bay. If youﾒd like to experience nature in her most spectacular finery, make sure you see the karstic topography of the underground river in Puerto Princesaﾒs national park, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
16 October 2017 - El NidoArrival 16/10/2017 at 09H15 . Departure 16/10/2017 at 18H00 .
To the far north of Palawan island, El Nido is famous for its black rock cliffs where the nests of ﾓsalanganesﾔ, a kind of sea lark, are harvested and eaten as a delicacy. This village opens its doors onto the magnificent Bacuit archipelago, a drawcard for marine adventurers. Among the most beautiful spots for snorkelling in the Philippines are the deep blue lagoons from which vast, steep rocks rise. Postcard-perfect beaches and deserted bays ring the island.
17 October 2017 - At seaArrival 17/10/2017 at 00H00 . Departure 17/10/2017 at 00H00 .
18 October 2017 - At seaArrival 18/10/2017 at 00H00 . Departure 18/10/2017 at 00H00 .
Hong kongDisembarkation 19/10/2017 at 07H00 .
Hong Kong, known as the “Fragrant harbour”, bordered by the South China Sea, is a heady place attracting tourists from the world over. This former British colony today combines ultramodern shopping malls and authentic markets like the Ladie’s Market or the night market on Temple Street. At first sight, you’ll be overwhelmed by the city’s architecture which, because of lack of ground space, reaches skywards, with its 1,250 skyscrapers and other towers. Believing is seeing, so if you go up to Victoria Peak, the highest point on the island, you’ll see a dizzying and unforgettable view of the bay.
The information below is current but subject to change at any time without advance notice from government authorities. Please consult your respective government agencies for visa and health information.
Passport valid for at least six (6) months beyond the completion of your trip. Passport must contain at least two completely clear, blank, unused visa pages for each visa required, not including any amendment pages. Visa pages with stains or ink from other pages in the passport are not usable. Guests who deviate from the scheduled embarkation or disembarkation port should research the foreign entry requirements for the port country. Due to government regulations, regrettably, Ponant will have to deny boarding to any guest who fails to obtain the appropriate travel documentation for this trip.
A visa is not necessary for Hong Kong. However, should you plan on staying in China before or after your cruise, you will need to obtain an individual visa for China.
Indonesia: if you are a US, UK or Canadian citizen and you are embarking and disembarking in Bali, your visa on arrival obtained at the airport will be free of charge. The free entry visa is not applicable to Australian citizens, the visa on arrival costs 35USD , please have correct change as credit cards are not accepted.
It is recommended that you contact your health professional for any specific medical advice relating to travel through these regions, including advice on Malaria prevention and dengue fever.
Bloomberg Questions for PONANT
Bloomberg Questions for PONANT
How did the Ponant cruise to Borneo come together?
The island of Borneo provides endless opportunities for exploration, from the ancient Dayak cultures and rajahs of Sarawak, through the opulence of Brunei, to the rainforests and picture postcard islands of Sabah. However, its sheer size and mountainous terrain can make it a difficult island to travel across. Quality hotels can be hard to find, flight connections are rarely convenient, cancellations are common and the alternate of local bus travel over endless corrugated and potholed roads is a daunting prospect. L’Austral is the ideal platform for exploring this part of the world. It allows guests to experience the many facets of the island before returning to an attentive crew delivering refined luxury with French flair and sophistication. Guests need only unpack once and they are delivered to new and exotic destinations each day. Partnering luxury and adventure in remote seldom visited destinations is the essence of a Ponant luxury Expedition voyage.
What is the experience like?
The diversity of landscapes, wildlife and cultures mean that no two destinations are the same. Every destination has its own unique charm and intrigue. Guests have the opportunity to experience one of the world’s oldest rainforests, home to the famed Orang-Utan and the ‘Jimmy Durante’ of the primate world – the unique looking proboscis monkey. They can marvel at the opulence and unique architecture of Bandar Seri Begawan in the Sovereign State of Brunei. Or they can journey through the lowland rainforests and mangroves of the Kinabatangan river in Sabah. Described as Malaysia’s gift to the earth, it is one of only two places in the world where nine species of primate can be seen. There’s also seven species of Hornbill, countless other bird species and the world’s rarest elephant, the Bornean Pygmy elephant.
What has it been like to work in that region?
I find working in the region very rewarding. The locals are a very proud people, willing to showcase their culture and beautiful landscapes. Most people visit the island to explore the jungles and see the exotic wildlife. However, it is the genuine friendliness of the people that they remember the most.
Malaysia, Brunei and Indonesia are countries that want to expand their cruise markets. This provides a good basis to further develop the region and we continually seek new destinations and experiences for our guests. The island abounds in unique experiences awaiting discovery by even the most seasoned Traveller. The variety and style of destinations are able to cater to all facets of the cruise industry, from the large mass market ships, to small luxury vessels like L’Austral.
Can you elaborate on why itineraries don't normally go there and what spurred Ponant's interest?
Borneo conjures images of a faraway primeval land, a land of head hunters and Orang-Utans beckoning exploration. As the global leader in luxury small ship expeditions we are continually seeking new destinations and itineraries. Our fleet of small luxury ships visit over 400 destinations in more than 80 countries and with four new vessels on the way, we are always searching for new exotic destinations to showcase to our guests. Borneo’s location at the heart of the Malay Archipelago, its incredible diversity and breathtaking beauty make it an ideal destination for exploration by small luxury ships, like L’Austral.
Are there any challenges when sailing to Borneo?
Borneo is an ideal destination for exploration by luxury small ship. The island is blessed with good air access to major international hubs. From Singapore, Hong Kong, Bali or Kota Kinabalu a small luxury ship can explore the many coastal destinations the island has to offer. Guests need only unpack once to experience the rainforests, rajahs and riches scattered across the island. With such a multitude of destinations on offer, each day is a new adventure.
Any personal favorite excursions?
Without doubt my favourite shore excursion would have to be the overnight experience on the Kinabatangan river in the Malaysian state of Sabah. From Sandakan guests travel up the lower reaches of the river to experience the biodiversity contained within the region. The Kinabatangan River meanders 560km from the Crocker Range to the Sulu Sea and sustains one of the world's richest ecosystems. It has been described as Malaysia’s gift to the Earth and the original lowland forests and mangrove swamps near the coast contain some of Borneo's highest concentrations of wildlife. It is considered the best area for viewing wildlife, not just in Sabah but all of Malaysia.
A la carte Options
Before your cruise
Flights From/To Paris (Economic Class) + Discover Bali 1N (Pre) + Discover Hong Kong (Post)
Per person, based on double occupancy
Flights From/To Paris (Economic Class) + Temples and Rice 2N (Pre) + Discover Hong Kong (Post)
Per person, based on double occupancy
Travellers are advised to check all the information with the authorities concerned prior to the departure date. Ponant advises Travellers to consult the country factsheets relating to the chosen destinations. Ponant specifically draws Travellers' attention to the fact that the information provided may change up until the departure date, and they are advised to consult that information up until the time of departure. CDP invites Travellers to adjust their behavior to the visited country, to exercise vigilance and to avoid carrying valuable objects during their travel.
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