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THE SECRET SOUTH PACIFIC - Fly Free 2022*

31 Night Fly Cruise and Stay


  • Cruise Line: Heritage Expeditions
  • Ship: Heritage Adventurer
  • Package Departs: 10 October 2022
  • Package Duration: 31 Nights
  • Offer Type: Fly Cruise and Stay
  • Embark Ship: Bitung, Indonesia
  • Disembark Ship: Port Vila Vanuatu
Package Duration: 30 nights, Fly, Cruise & Stay
Package Starts: 10 October 2022 from Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide or Perth
1st Cruise Starts: 12 October 2022 - from Manado, North Sulawesi, Indonesia
2nd Cruise Ends: 9 November 2022 - into Port Vila, Vanuatu
Package Ends: 10 November 2022 - with flight back to Australia

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All prices in Australian Dollars

Exclusive Savings!
Twin Window Superior Deck 4 - was $38,895 - our exclusive price: $35,545*pp
Twin Window Superior Deck 5 - was $40,725 - our exclusive price: $37,200*pp
Twin Worsley Suite Deck 6 - was $50,235 - our exclusive price: $45,820*pp
Twin Heritage Suite Deck 6 - was $79,580 - our exclusive price: $72,435*pp
Single Window Main Deck 3 - was $50,120 - our exclusive price: $43,465*

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THE SECRET SOUTH PACIFIC Fly, Cruise & Stay package prices include:
- FREE* return economy class airfare from Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide or Perth to Manado (via Singapore) and ex Port Vila on return inc. tax
- 1 night with early check in, hotel stay in Singapore at the Crowne Plaza Changi Airport
- One way transfer from Manado airport to port
- 28 night South Pacific expedition cruise aboard the Heritage Adventurer (140 guests) from Manado to Port Vila^
- All shipboard main meals
- All expedition shore excursions on land and via zodiac lead by a team of experts in the region
- Discovery Fund Fees of $1000 USD per person
- One way transfer from Port Vila port to hotel after disembarkation
- 1 night hotel accommodation in Port Vila post cruise with breakfast
- One way transfer from Port Vila hotel to airport
Special Conditions
*Conditions Apply: All prices shown here are per person share twin in AUD (unless stated as single), based on best available cruise fare at time of publication (20Dec21). Some cabins may have obstructed views. Cruise deposit, amendment and cancellation conditions apply. Travel agent service fees may apply. Special conditions apply - please ask for full details at time of enquiry. All passports, vaccinations and visas are the responsibility of the travelling guest to secure prior to departure from Australia. Transfers only included if guests are arriving/departing by air at specific airports on exact package dates. We reserve the right to correct errors without penalty. Beverages and gratuities are not included in the prices listed here. Currently, gratuities are USD $7.00 per person per day, payable on board only, and are subject to change without notice. All rates converted from original USD and subject to currency fluctuation until paid in full. Offer ends 31Mar22 or until sold out/withdrawn. ^Cruise made up of back to back sailings - cabin change may be required in Madang mid-cruise. Free included airfare is in economy class at the carrier of our choosing based on currently available flight schedules.
Special Validity Dates
Special is valid from 20 December 2021 to 31 March 2022 or until sold out/withdrawn.
Pre-cruise Itinerary
Date Activity
10 Oct 2022 Fly FREE from Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide or Perth to Singapore
10 Oct 2022 Arrive Singapore, Check in to hotel for 2nt stay at Changi airport
11 Oct 2022 Walk to gate, Fly Singapore to Manado, Transfer to port, embark ship
Cruise Itinerary
Date Port Arrive Depart
11 Oct 2022 Bitung, Indonesia Embark
12 Oct 2022 Ternate Island, Maluka Islands, Indonesia
13 Oct 2022 Halmahera Island, Indonesia
14 Oct 2022 Misool Archipelago, Indonesia
15 Oct 2022 Raja Ampat
16 Oct 2022 Raja Ampat
17 Oct 2022 Amsterdam Island, PNG
18 Oct 2022 Manokwari, Papua New Guinea
19 Oct 2022 Cenderawasih Bay, PNG
20 Oct 2022 Biak, Papua New Guinea
21 Oct 2022 Liki Island, PNG
22 Oct 2022 Jayapura, Indonesia
23 Oct 2022 Sepik River, PNG
24 Oct 2022 Madang, Papua New Guinea
25 Oct 2022 Sepik River, PNG
26 Oct 2022 Manus Island, Papua New Guinea
27 Oct 2022 New Hanover Island, PNG
28 Oct 2022 Rabaul, Papua New Guinea
29 Oct 2022 Nissan Island, Papua New Guinea
30 Oct 2022 Bougainville Island, Papua New Guinea
31 Oct 2022 New Georgia Islands, Solomons
1 Nov 2022 Tetepare, Solomon Islands
2 Nov 2022 Malaita Island, Soloman Islands
3 Nov 2022 Star Harbour, Solomon Islands
4 Nov 2022 Nendo Island, Solomon Islands
5 Nov 2022 Vanikoro, Solomon Islands
6 Nov 2022 Espiritu Santo Island Vanuatu
7 Nov 2022 Ambrym Island Vanuatu
8 Nov 2022 Port Vila Vanuatu Disembark
Post-cruise Itinerary
Date Activity
8 Nov 2022 Transfer to hotel, Checkin Port Vila hotel for overnight stay
9 Nov 2022 Transfer to airport, Fly FREE Port Vila to Australia
28 Night Cruise sailing from Bitung to Port Vila aboard Heritage Adventurer. Hotel stay pre-cruise in Manado.

This itinerary is a combination of Indonesian Explorer and Discover the Secrets of Melanesia voyages.

1: Manado
Arrive at Manado, captial of the North Sulawesi province, and make your way to your hotel where our group will spend the first night of the expedition. This evening meet your fellow voyagers and expedition team over dinner at the hotel.

2: At Sea
Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before boarding your ship in Bitung. You will have time to settle into your cabin and familiarise yourself with the ship; we will also take the opportunity to introduce you to your expedition team and our voyage plans. You are invited to join the expedition team in the Observation Lounge and up on the Observation Deck as we set sail for Ternate Island.

3: Ternate Island
This surprisingly busy island city and port, once a leading clove producer, sits perched alongside the dramatic cone of triple-peaked volcano Gamalama in the North Maluku Islands. Well off the tourist route, today is a true expedition day with options including visiting the spice and cinnamon plantations, the palace of the Sultan of Ternate, numerous forts dating back to the colonial era.

4: Halmahera Island
The largest island in Maluku (the Moluccas), remote Halmahera pairs pristine white sand beaches with rugged, unspoiled forests all presided over by spectacular outline of Mt Mamuya. Consisting of four peninsulas and the marine rich clear waters of three exceptional great bays: Kau in the northeast, Buli in the east, and Weda in the southeast. An important part of the ecoregion known as Wallacea, its impressive Asian and Australasian fauna includes 26 bird species, four of which are found nowhere else in the world.

5: Misool Island
Part of the Sultanate of Tidore during the spice trade wars, Misool Island is the second largest island in the aquatic wonderland that is Raja Ampat (aka Four Kings Islands, named after its four main islands) and our introduction to this stunning marine environment. Rich in heritage, it was colonised by the Dutch, however still maintains its cultural essence and traditional ways of life with indigenous constructions, folk dance and respect for nature prevailing. On land, discover caves hidden among verdant forests featuring rock art dating back more than 5,000 years, while under its protected waters Dugong, Bumphead Parrotfish, Clownfish, Manta Rays, Ghost Pipefish, Harlequin Shrimp, Pygmy Seahorse and more can be found among spectacular coral gardens and sea-cave cemeteries. Over the course of the day we aim to explore the labyrinth of caves and passages, and hike up to the viewing platforms to enjoy the spectacular vistas and heart-shaped lagoon of Karawapop.

6 to 7: Raja Ampat
Lapped by stunning turquoise waters, Raja Ampat’s collection of 1,500 tiny, jungle-cloaked islands are among Indonesia’s most beautiful. We plan to spend 2 days exploring the bounty of rainbow corals, shoals of multi-coloured fish, intriguing ocean-carved limestone formations and jungles of this tropical paradise of forgotten islands. Believed to contain the most biodiverse marine habitat on the planet, the waters surrounding Raja Ampat are home to 600 species of hard coral and 1,200 types of reef fish and make for exceptional snorkelling and Zodiac cruising. On land, spotting the brilliant Wilson’s Bird-of-paradise and Red Bird-of-paradise will be high on our agenda here, with early morning visits planned ensuring the very best opportunity for all to see these remarkable birds in their natural habitat and, hopefully, witness their rarely-seen mating dance around their ‘lekking’ trees. Other activities could include beachcombing, visiting villages and engaging in cultural exchanges with locals and forest walks.

8: Amsterdam Island
Part of the Su Islands (Mios Su) or the Soe Island Group, a cluster of small islands off the northern coast of Western New Guinea, our visit to little-known and explored Amsterdam Island channels the true expedition nature of our voyage providing an opportunity to explore where very few have been before.

9: Manokwari and Arfak Mountains
Located at the top of the Bird’s Head Peninsula and surrounded by lush rolling hills and impressive spine of the Arfak Mountains, Manokwari is the capital of West Papua. Options here include an early rise travelling high into the Arfak Mountains to the Pegunungan Arfak Nature Reserve exploring the higher elevations and misty tropical montane rainforests with their exceptional suite of endemic plants, animals and birds. During our journey we will be on the lookout for the Western Parotia and Vogelkop Bowerbird, and visit the viewing hides for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to observe the Magnificent Bird-of-paradise, among the region’s 320 bird species. Alternatively enjoy a sleep in and explore the fascinating town of Manokwari, home to more than 24 different tribal groups.

10: Cenderawasih Marine Park
Enjoy the unforgettable experience of swimming with the iconic Whale Sharks of Kwatisore Bay in Cenderawasih Marine Park. One of the best places in the world to snorkel with these gentle giants, we aim to visit the local fishermen’s Bagans (handmade floating platforms) where these mega-fish (known to grow more than 12-metres in length), hopeful of catching some of the smaller fish escaping fishermen’s nets, are known to congregate. This spectacular 15,000-squarekilometre marine park is also home to some of the finest coral reef examples in the world and 18 tropical islands, which we will explore, where 209 species of fish and 4 species of turtle can be seen. We also plan to visit a village where the locals live by a unique mix of traditional, Dutch and modern influences.

11: Biak & Rusbasbedas Islands
The seldom-visited Biak Island in the Schouten Islands archipelago of Cenderawasih Bay boasts the highest endemic biodiversity in Papua including 17 endemic birds. Among the species we may encounter are the Long-tailed Honey-buzzard, Red-capped Flowerpecker, Yellow-bibbed Fruitdove, Geelvink Imperial-pigeon, Biak Black Flycatcher and Numfor Paradise-kingfisher and Leaf Warbler. In the afternoon we plan to sail to the pristine and isolated Rusbasbedas Island with its white sand beaches, shear drop-offs and enormous corals teeming with brightly coloured fish make it paradise for snorkellers and beachcombers.

12: Liki Island
Enjoy a warm welcome on Liki Island, part of the Koemamba Islands in formerly Dutch New Guinea, where villagers share local customs and traditions along with some of the island’s culinary delights. Explore the forest looking for wildlife on a nature walk, or snorkel along the edge of the abundant coral reef on this charming and rarely visited island.

13: Jayapura
The peaceful paradise of Lake Sentani, the glittering freshwater lake reflecting the steep, verdant mountains in the Cyclops Strict Nature Reserve of Papua’s capital Jayapura, is renowned for its famous artifacts, traditional motifs, pottery, woodworking and bark paintings, and is our destination following an early morning arrival. We will journey to the lake’s edge before enlisting traditional longboats, passing stilt houses, as we navigate its many islands. Experience local culture in the form of dance and artists at work making bark paintings and bride money before returning to the ship for lunch and sailing towards Vanimo and Papua New Guinea for our International arrival into Papua New Guinea.

14: Sepik River, Papua New Guinea
We have allowed plenty of time to fully appreciate this remarkable river, its birds, animals and the people that call it home. The Sepik River, the longest in Papua New Guinea, flows from the highlands to the Bismarck Sea. It is a rich arterial river that has fostered great traditional artists. We plan to explore the river by Zodiac, following tributaries and channels in search of local wildlife. Enjoy a warm welcome at Kopar Village where we will experience village life and a traditional Dragon Dance unique to this region. The world-renowned artists of the Sepik region travel long distances to meet the ship and there is the opportunity to purchase unique carvings and more directly from them.

15: Madang
The self appointed ‘Prettiest Town in the South Pacific’, Madang is bound by lush rainforest, calm blue waters studded with volcanic islands, Tupira’s supreme surf break, flourishing coral gardens and rich history. You are invited to join the expedition team in the Observation Lounge and up on the Observation Deck as we set sail for the Sepik River.

16: Sepik River
Sure to be one of the highlights of our expedition, we have allowed plenty of time to fully appreciate this remarkable river, its birds, animals and the people that call it home. The Sepik River, the longest in Papua New Guinea, flows from the highlands to the Bismarck Sea. It is a rich arterial river that has fostered great traditional artists. We plan to explore the river by Zodiac, following tributaries and channels in search of local wildlife. Enjoy a warm welcome at Kopar Village where we will experience village life and a traditional Dragon Dance unique to this region. Bring along plenty of the local currency (kina) to purchase unique carvings directly from the artists.

17: Manus Island
Seldom visited and little known, Manus Island is considered a jewel in the crown of Papua New Guinea. Biologically isolated the Manus Province is home to a high proportion of endemic species and our stop here is likely to be a birding highlight. Once the location of a detention centre, part of Australia’s ‘Pacific Solution’, life on Manus Island continues according to traditional customs. Comprised of 10 villages and a population of less than 1,000, our visit to Derimbat Village includes taking part in an elaborate welcoming ceremony before exploring their village and unique way of life with a local guide.

18: New Hanover Island
Traditionally known as Lavongai Island, volcanic New Hanover is a wild, rugged and untouched paradise complete with a dense rainforest, waterfalls and exceptional beaches fringed by reefs and smaller satellite islands. Sparsley populated, the villages here enjoy a subsistant, traditional lifestyle. Exceptional snorkelling is a given here with much to experience below the surface, while Three Island Harbour, on the north-west tip of the island, features four Japanese WWII wrecks which were sunk by Allied bombers in 1944.

19: Rabaul and Kokopo, New Britain
Six beautiful cone-shaped volcanoes ring Rabaul’s dramatic, flooded-caldera harbour. Visit the bubbling hot springs and take in the magnificent views of the harbour and volcanoes from Observatory Ridge. As we explore the island, we will see fascinating reminders of the Japanese occupation, our tour taking in the site of the enormous volcanic eruption that all but destroyed Rabaul town, the underground bunker that was the hiding place of Pearl Harbour commander, Yamamoto, and joining the locals shopping at the bustling Kokopo markets.

20: Nissan Island
A tropical atoll adrift in the azure waters of the Buka Channel, Nissan Island is bathed in rich tropical currents that abound in marine life. Seldom have outsiders had the opportunity to discover this world promising abundant pelagic fish-life and pristine coral reefs. Ashore there are still reminders of the brief, but intensive, World War II activities during which the islands were recaptured by Kiwi, Australian and British forces from the Japanese occupiers. During our time ashore we will meet with the friendly locals from all three of the island’s Balil Villages and search the dense woods for some of the elusive birds that occur here. Later the snorkellers will find plenty to discover in the coral reefs that surround Nissan.

21: Bougainville Island
We plan to be among the first expeditioners to re-discover the treasures of Bougainville, long isolated and in a strange way protected due to the conflict which swirled around its shores. Today it is emerging once again as a newly vibrant and remarkably pristine island paradise, it is home to some of the greatest biodiversity in the region both above and below the water. We plan to explore the area around Arawa, including the Panguna Copper & Gold Mine site – the setting for the movie Mr Pip – with great opportunities to access the island’s interior and its reefs. Spend your last Kina under the thatched roof of the Arawa Markets amongst the hum and chatter of hundreds of locals.

22: New Georgia Islands
The volcanic New Georgia Islands are found in the Western Province of the Solomon Islands and are characterised by extensive reefs and lagoons, rugged terrain and an abundance of rivers. Nature enthusiasts will relish landing on Kolombangara Island, where we plan to visit the Imbu Rano Lodge and Conservation Area which protects the islands central peak and search for the rare Roviana Rail along with other endemic bird species. Snorkel the wreck of a US NAVY FAF Grumman Wildcat (carrier version) WWII plane off a tiny island where the surrounding reefs are home to some of the highest fish counts in the world. Stock up on the local currency to purchase the wood or stone carvings that the people of the Western Province are so famous for.

23: Tetepare Island
Uninhabited for 150 years, this rugged island cloaked in rainforest and fringed with coral reefs is home to one of the Solomon Islands’ leading community driven conservation projects Tetepare Descendants’ Association. Receiving international recognition for its conservation and archaeological significance. Three species of turtle, including the endangered leatherback, nest on its beaches while other species inhabiting the island and surrounding waters include dugong, the world’s largest skink, endemic Tetepare White-eye and many more.

24: Malaita
Mountainous Malaita is home to one-third of the Solomon’s total population and features pristine rivers and unexploited tropical forests to explore. This morning we plan to visit the beautiful uninhabited Leli Island, an ideal snorkel site with its calm clear waters and abundant array of fish and corals. In the afternoon we plan to be among the first to visit a remote and hard to reach village where we will experience a rapturous warrior welcome from the Kwaio mountain people. One of the most traditional communities in the Solomon Islands, enjoy an authentic slice of village life as we learn about their conservation efforts.

25: Makira
Makira is the most easterly of the main islands in the Solomon’s archipelago. This morning we anchor in the calm waters of Star Harbour. Join the naturalists for a Zodiac exploration of the abundant mangrove forests that line the shores, and take a short walk to Makira’s south coast where the villagers live much as they have for millennia. We spend time with the locals, who share with us their traditional song and dance. If we are lucky, the local boys might be surfing on their hand-carved palm wood boards.

26: Nendö, Temotu Province
Nendö is the largest of the Santa Cruz Islands, which lie to the south-east of the Solomon Islands. The Spanish navigator Álvaro de Mendaña de Neira unsuccessfully attempted to establish a colony in 1595. Biologically these islands share more in common with Vanuatu. It is also the home of red feather money, sourced from the Scarlet Honeyeater. Watch the manufacture of red feather money, and join the locals in dances which reverberate through the ages.

27: Vanikoro
Today we explore the archipelago of Vanikoro, with its five islands encapsulated by a dramatic barrier reef which offers superb snorkelling. French explorer Jean-François de Galaup, comte de La Pérouse famously disappeared here after both his vessels, La Boussole and Astrolabe, struck the reef in 1788. On the shore we visit a monument to Le Pérouse, erected by fellow explorer Dumont Durville in 1827. Join the naturalists on a forest walk in search of the endemic Vanikoro White-eye and Monarch, or marvel at the delicate Vanikoro Orchid. We also have a good chance to see the recently rediscovered Vanikoro Flying Fox, considered extinct until a recent visit by Heritage Expeditions.

28: Espiritu Santo
Today we explore Vanuatu’s largest Island, Santo; location of James Michener’s Tales of the South Pacific. Indulge in a swim in the crystalline waters of Champagne Beach with its famed powdery white sand. This afternoon we will enjoy Zodiac cruises to the iconic blue holes of Santo. For those with an interest in the history of the island, there is a visit to Lugainville and Million Dollar Point.

29: Ambrym
Today we will visit Ambrym, renowned as the island of volcanoes and magic throughout Vanuatu. We plan to head ashore at Ranon on the northern coast where the traditional Rom dance is still practised and custom carving is alive and well. A walk through the forest brings us to the ‘arena’ where masked dancers emerge from the forest. The forests of Ambrym offer some excellent walks to go in search of the local birds and plants, accompanied by our naturalists. This afternoon enjoy a final snorkel excursion.

30: Port Vila, Vanuatu
Arrive into Port Vila early morning and disembark. Upon disembarking a transfer to your central city hotel or the airport will conclude your voyage. To allow time for disembarkation procedures we do not recommend booking flights from Port Vila before midday.

Note: During our voyage, circumstances may make it necessary or desirable to deviate from the proposed itinerary. This can include poor weather and/or opportunities for making unplanned excursions. Your Expedition Leader will keep you fully informed.

Heritage Adventurer is a true pioneering expedition vessel of exceptional pedigree. Often referred to as the 'Grande Dame of Polar Exploration' due to her celebrated history and refined design, she was purposebuilt for adventure in 1991 at Finland's Rauma shipyard and specifically designed for Polar exploration.

Setting a peerless standard in authentic expedition travel, Heritage Adventurer (formerly known as MS Hanseatic) combines the highest passenger ship iceclass rating (1A Super) with an impressive history of Polar exploration. Having held records for the most northern and southern Arctic and Antarctic navigations, and for traversing both the Northwest and Northeast Passages, makes Heritage Adventurer perfect for pioneering New Zealand-based Heritage Expeditions signature experiential expedition travel.

Originally designed to accommodate 184 guests, Heritage Adventurer now welcomes just 140 expeditioners ensuring spacious, stylish and comfortable voyages, while a fleet of 14 Zodiacs ensures all guests are able to maximise their expedition adventure. Heritage Adventurer proudly continues our traditions of exceptional, personalised expedition experiences as Heritage Expeditions flagship.


Ship Profile & Stats
  • Maiden voyage: 1991
  • Tonnage: 8,378
  • Length: 124 m
  • Beam: 18 m
  • Draft: 4.97 m
  • Speed: 15 knots
  • Passenger capacity (dbl): 140
Ship Facilities
  • Presentation Theatre
  • Hospital
  • Dining Room
  • Shop
  • Lounge/Bar
  • 2 Bars
  • Bistro Dining Room and Lounge
  • Zodiacs
  • Pool
  • Health, Wellbeing & Beauty Area
  • Jacuzzi
  • Gym
  • Library
  • Observation Lounge
  • Observation Deck
Every year Heritage Expeditions voyages with small groups of between 18 and 140 intrepid travellers to some of the most unique and remote islands, coasts and shorelines on earth aboard their expedition ships Heritage Adventurer, Spirit of Enderby, Akademik Shokalskiy and Heritage Explorer on voyages ranging from 5 – 28 days.

Founded in 1985 by the Russ family in Christchurch, New Zealand, Heritage Expeditions is still proudly family-owned and operated. Contributing to conservation through experiential learning and providing funds for research and management, they are pioneers in environmentally-responsible expedition travel offering intimate group excursions to Antarctica and the Subantarctic Islands, through the Pacific, and around the Russian Far East and Wrangel Island on their purpose built expedition ships.

Each expedition is meticulously planned and led by a team of botanists, ornithologists, naturalists and experts in their field, ensuring guests maximise every opportunity to learn, discover and experience as much as possible, while minimising the impact of their visit and returning as ambassadors for these very special places.

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From

AU $35,545*

per person
*All prices are per person twin share unless stated as solo, triple or quad share.
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