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The Vanilla Islands (Nosy Be to Mahe)

11 days with Ponant   Rating: Deluxe

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  • Reduced rates! Prices shown reflect discount. Click here for eligible departures.

Offers subject to change or withdrawal, availability is limited. Some discounts are not combinable.


Itinerary
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Day 1 - NOSY BE
Embarkation from 00H00 to 0H00. Departure at 18H00.
 
Day 2 – MAMOUDZOU
  
Day 3 – MOHÉLI
  
Day 4 – GLORIEUSES, SCATTERED ISLANDS
The Scattered Islands are like minuscule confetti sprinkled around Madagascar and form an archipelago of unrivalled beauty. Their geographical isolation, and their very limited human settlement make them a true geological sanctuary, classed as a nature reserve since 1975. Regularly used as the “zero point” in scientific studies, they offer their rare visitors almost pristine vegetation composed mainly of mangrove, as well as long beaches of shimmering sand stretching out behind turquoise lagoons, and coral reefs that are home to the world’s highest concentration of sea turtles. 
  
Day 5 – ALDABRA ATOLL
Located in the very heart of this faraway archipelago, the Aldabra Atoll is considered to be one of the last virtually untouched sanctuaries on earth, where a large population of sea turtles has found refuge. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this vast tract of land is formed by 4 small coral reef islands separated by narrow passes and containing an emerald-water lagoon lined with mangrove and fine-sand beaches. As your ship slowly nears the clear, reflective waters along its shoreline, do not miss your chance to discover this natural wonder, which is considered to be the largest atoll in the world and once fired the imagination of many an explorer.
 
Day 6 – AT SEA
During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observer marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.
 
Day 7 – ALPHONSE ISLAND
Alphonse Island is located off the Seychelles archipelago. Discovered in 1730 by the Knight Alphonse de Pontevez, this island, specialised in coconut processing in the past, is now a veritable natural reserve, home to different species of marine mammals, sea turtles and many birds. Alphonse Island is also renowned for its rich underwater life and coral, among the best preserved in the Indian Ocean. A marvellous spectacle that can be admired with just a mask!
 
Day 8 – POIVRE ISLAND
At some 200 km south-west of Mahé, discover Poivre Atoll, a small paradise that is part of the Amirantes archipelago, in the Outer Islands of the Seychelles. Consisting of two coral islands, Poivre Island and Ile du Sud, separated by a small lagoon, it owes its name to Pierre Poivre, the Mauritius intendant who introduced spices to the Seychelles in the late 18th century. Once used for coconut plantations, Poivre Island is now focused on tourism. Visitors come here for scuba diving or big-game fishing in waters that are particularly rich and clean, where the marine life includes sea turtles.
 
Day 9 – LA DIGUE ISLAND
A sprinkling of islands scattered in the Indian Ocean, the Seychelles exude calm and beauty against a backdrop of leafy coconut trees, white sand and crystal-clear water. In addition to the tranquility of its green lagoons and its idyllic beaches, this remote paradise also boasts an exceptional fauna and flora. In the many parks and nature reserves, come and observe colourful birds, giant turtles and the numerous marine species living in the turquoise waters. Before reaching the archipelago’s capital, Mahe, your ship will introduce you to La Digue. Time stands still here on this small stretch of land protected from all motorised traffic, where the only mode of transport is the bicycle or the oxcart.
 
Day 10 – VICTORIA, MAHÉ
Discover Mahé, the main island of the Seychelles and also the largest of the archipelago, home to the capital, Victoria. Mahé has almost 70 beaches of fine sand, framed by the emblematic granite rocks, and whose crystal clear waters are renowned for their rich underwater life. The island is also famous for its splendid mountain panoramas accessible on hikes, such as the Morne Seychellois, which is 905 metres high and overlooks the Indian Ocean. Mahé is also an island full of history where fine colonial properties rub shoulders with Creole houses - and don’t forget the marvellous Botanical Gardens in Victoria.
 
Day 11 - VICTORIA, MAHÉ
Disembarkation at 00H00.
Discover Mahé, the main island of the Seychelles and also the largest of the archipelago, home to the capital, Victoria. Mahé has almost 70 beaches of fine sand, framed by the emblematic granite rocks, and whose crystal clear waters are renowned for their rich underwater life. The island is also famous for its splendid mountain panoramas accessible on hikes, such as the Morne Seychellois, which is 905 metres high and overlooks the Indian Ocean. Mahé is also an island full of history where fine colonial properties rub shoulders with Creole houses - and don’t forget the marvellous Botanical Gardens in Victoria.
Map
All This Included
Embark with PONANT on a brand-new expedition cruise to the “Vanilla Islands”, from Madagascar to the Seychelles via the Comoros and Mayotte. This 10-day itinerary aboard Le Bougainville will be an opportunity to discover little-known places of breathtaking natural beauty, an original fauna and flora, as well as meet the locals.  
 
Thanks to the on-board presence of a diving instructor, you will be able to unforgettable dives in an exceptional underwater environment.
 
You’ll set sail from Madagascar, the island continent, having boarded your ship in Nosy Be, known for its beautiful old-growth forests where rosewood, camphor and ylang-ylang trees thrive.
 
After calling at Mohéli in the Comoros, you’ll discover Mayotte. This small French archipelago protected by a double barrier reef is the refuge of an incredibly rich fauna: dolphins, rays, giant turtles, and the region’s last dugongs can be observed here.
 
You will then reach the Glorioso Islands, part of the Scattered Islands. This beautiful archipelago with very few inhabitants is home to exceptional fauna and flora including, in particular, marine turtles. 
 
You will then reach Aldabra Atoll, a largely untouched natural sanctuary listed as World Heritage by UNESCO, before visiting the small islands of Poivre and Alphonse, where you’ll have the opportunity to come face to face with abundant marine life.
 
Before disembarking in Victoria on the island of Mahé, you will call at La Digue, a veritable picture-postcard of the Seychelles.
 
  • Port and safety charges
  • Open bar
  • Gratuities
  • Your cruise including all meals from dinner on the day of embarkation to breakfast on the day of disembarkation
  • Welcome aboard and captain’s cocktail parties, gala dinner
  • Mineral water, tea, filter coffee, white, red and rosé wines served with meals
  • 24 hour room service (selected menu)
  • Evening entertainments and events, and/or organised shows
  • Porterage from the quayside to the ship and vice versa
  • English-speaking guest-speaker (when applicable)
  • Flight from Mauritius to Nosy Be
Highlights
  • Discovering the Seychelles, the Scattered Islands, the Comoros (new port of call), Mayotte and Madagascar, all on the one same cruise.
  • Outings and shore visits in Zodiac® inflatables with a team of experienced naturalist guides.
  • Encounters with local people.
  • A variety of idyllic landscapes: atolls, coral reefs, lagoons, granite landscapes, white-sand beaches, a rich and preserved fauna and flora.
  • In the Seychelles, Anse Source d’Argent, the most famous beach of La Digue, surrounded by large blocks of granite and edged with coconut palms.
  • Visiting Aldabra Atoll, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that is home to the world’s largest population of tortoises.
  • Discovering the Scattered Islands, a geological sanctuary with nature reserve status since 1975.
  • Possibility of diving (PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or equivalent) with an experienced instructor on board and of snorkelling with your expedition team.
Accommodations
Cruising: Cabin onboard Le Bougainville
Notes
  • Cabin upgrades are available.
  • Fares may be subject to a fuel adjustment.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions
For Ponant terms and conditions, please click here.

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.