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Orion Expedition Cruises Introduces New “Voyages of Discovery” for 2009


 Eight New Itineraries Entice Travelers to Explore the “Paths Less Traveled”


Australia’s Orion Expedition Cruises is debuting eight new “Voyages of Discovery” for 2009.  The new itineraries allow guests aboard the MV Orion, the world’s latest purpose-built luxury expedition ship, to “access the inaccessible” and travel to remote and hidden islands, pristine beaches, active volcanoes and exotic villages on voyages to Melanesia, Papua New Guinea, Asia, New Zealand and the Sub-Antarctic.  


Orion’s new 2009 itineraries include the following:


New Guinea Island Adventure (11 nights, March/April) – Spectacular diving, pristine beaches, and ancient tropical fjords are the focus of this voyage, which travels to the remote Lamassa and Duke of York Islands, known for their natural beauty and friendly locals.  The MV Orion will be the first cruise ship to ever stop at Lambom.


Bay of Islands and Norfolk Island Discovery (10 nights, March/April) – Embarking at Auckland, this voyage meanders through the South Pacific, leading ultimately to multicultural Port Vila, Vanuatu, after stops in the Bay of Islands, historic Norfolk Island, the picturesque Isles of Pines, remote Anatom and Tanna, with its active volcano.


Melanesian Island Discovery (9 nights, March/April) – Guests on this journey can watch the megapodes lay their eggs on Savo and snorkel around the wreck of the World Discoverer (2001) at Nggela Island.  Explore Malakula with its tribal culture untouched by modern civilization, and Marovo Lagoon before arriving in the flooded volcanic caldera of Simpson Harbour, Rabaul.  Rabaul Harbour is dominated by Mt. Tavurvur, a spectacular active volcano that in the 1990’s erupted and covered Rabaul Township with fall out.  Today it still erupts every few minutes.  Combine the Bay of Islands and Melanesian Island Discovery voyages to for a memorable 19-night voyage along the “Ring of Fire.”        


Spice Island Adventure (9 nights, September/October) – Journeying from Darwin to Bali, this voyage offers a chance to explore the forgotten Islands of Maluku, the underwater paradise of Alor, the uninhabited island of Satonda, and the fishing village of Kenanga, with stops in Komodo and Sumba as well.


Gulf of Siam Explorer (11 nights, September/October) – Guests depart from Singapore on an adventure along the picturesque coastlines of Malaysia, Thailand and Cambodia that ends with a morning sail up the Sai Gon River to Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam, where an overnight stay caps off the voyage.


Vietnam Explorer (11 nights, September/October) – Departing Ho Chi Minh, this expedition offers an in-depth view of Vietnam, from its war history to the cultural treasure houses of Hoi An and Hue, before sailing on to Sihanoukville, Cambodia – known as the gateway to the Angkor Wat, and the island paradise of Ko Phangan, Thailand.  The journey ends in Singapore.


Forgotten Islands (10 nights, September/October) – The Forgotten Islands of Maluku are so named because their inaccessibility has left them far off the tourist path.  This voyage affords a once-in-a-lifetime chance to experience the vibrant reefs and ancient, untouched cultures of these stunning islands as guests travel from Bali to Cairns, stopping also in Komodo, Yamdena Island and Thursday Island in the Torres Strait.


Sub-Antarctic Wildlife Adventure (13 nights, November/December) – This island-hopping adventure is paradise for nature lovers and photographers, taking Orion guests to the wilderness islands of World Heritage-listed Macquarie and Campbell, the Auckland Islands and Snares Islands, as well as the spectacular New Zealand fjordlands.


The MV Orion is a 53-cabin (106-guest) luxury expedition vessel, the only true international-standard, five-star expedition vessel operating year-round from Australia.  It boasts the highest staff-to-guest ratio of any Australian-based ship, and offers all the luxuries associated with a mega yacht. For more information, visit www.orionexpeditions.



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