Cairns to Darwin 11 Nights | 29/03/20

Departing: Cairns

It's Awesome
  • 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
  • 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

Cruise the Great Barrier Reef on our twin hulled boutique catamaran cruise ship that offers 21 cabins for a maximum of 46 guests. Our bespoke cruises take guests from Cairns to Cape York, Arnhem Land and all the remote islands and locations in between before arriving in Darwin Harbour.

Our Cape York and Arnhem Land cruise ship expedition is a fascinating tapestry that immerses keen explorers in the very best of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef and remote northern coastline.

Cruise Departs 17th March 2019 - Disembark in Darwin 28th March 2019.

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 our ship 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. 

We begin our first day aboard the ship with guests choosing to swim and snorkel in the gin clear tropical waters of the World Heritage Great Barrier Reef.

Explore the pristine coral gardens of the northern reef and tour the famous 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 our cruise ship heads West, we will venture to islands 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 cruising in the remote Coburg Peninsula also offers a myriad opportunities to spot exotic bird and marine life.

Day 1 Depart Cairns

Embarkation commences at the 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 > snorkel on the reef > 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.

Day 2 Lizard Island

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.

Day 3 Stanley Island and Davie Reef

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 Davie Reef and Cay we enjoy swimming and snorkelling and observe the large seabird rookery.

Day 4 Forbes and Magra Islands

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.

Day 5 Cape York and Thursday Island

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.

Day 6 Nhulunbuy (Gove)

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.

Day 7 Hole In The Wall and Beach Barbeque

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.

Day 8 Elcho Island Artists

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.

Day 9 Liverpool River and Maningrida

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.

Day 10 Coburg Peninsular

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.

Day 11 Bathurst and Melville Islands

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.

Day 12 Cruise Ship Arrives in Darwin Harbour

Arrive into Darwin, the capital of the Northern Territory and gateway to the ‘Top End’ > disembark at 8.00am.

Note:- Post Flights out of Darwin are an additional expense.

For more wonderful Great Barrier Reef Cruises see here 

Included In Price

  • 11 night expedition on Coral Discover
  • Expert Expedition Team, including speciality Guest Lecturers, to offer expert guiding and interpretative assistance
  • Daily guided excursions on the Explorer and Zodiac tender vessels, and kayaks where conditions allow
  • Small batch local dining, prepared fresh in our Galley: 10 buffet breakfasts, 10 buffet lunches and 10 a la carte dinners
  • Showcase wines and selected beer, as well as soft drinks, with lunch and dinner service
  • Captain’s Welcome and Farewell Events, and Open Bridge Access with our Captain
  • 24 hour speciality coffee and selection of teas
  • Use of all onboard facilities, including reference library
  • Comprehensive, fully guided sightseeing in each port
  • Entrance fees to National Parks and Ports of call
Tour Languages Offered
  • English
Departs From


Departure Time

Cairns Embarkation at 10.00am for an 11.00am departure

  • Darwin
  • Lizard Island
  • Stanley Island
  • Davie Reef
  • Forbes & Magra Islands
  • Cape York
  • Arnhem Land
  • Thursday Island
  • Nhulunbuy (Gove)
  • Hole in the Wall
  • Elcho Island
  • Liverpool River and Maningrida
  • Coburg Peninsular
  • Bathurst and Melville Islands
Months of Operation


Days of Operation



11 Nights

Available for Purchase / Hire
  • Laundry
  • Telephone and internet
  • Beverages outside the allotted meal times
Fitness Level Required

Low, Medium

Additional Information
  • All baggage brought on board the Ship by a passenger remains in the possession and control of the passenger during the Cruise and must be stored and kept in the cabin allocated to the passenger.
  • The carrier will endeavour to follow the Cruise itinerary as described in the brochure and the passenger accepts that the carrier has the right to vary the itinerary or cancel the Cruise if the carrier considers that this is necessary as a result of some Unexpected Event or prevailing inclement weather conditions and the passenger accepts that the passenger will not be entitled to any compensation or a refund of the fare paid should this occur except as is provided for in these Cruise Ticket Conditions.
  • It is a requirement that all passengers have a valid passport and appropriate visa/travel permits for the countries to be visited. Passport must have a validity of more than six months beyond the duration of travel. The company cannot be responsible for any travel restrictions or expenses arising through passengers not having relevant documentation.
  • It is recommended that all passengers purchase appropriate travel insurance prior to departure. Please ensure you are covered for remote area evacuation.
  • Smart casual attire for the evenings on board
  • Comfortable active wear during your days of exploration
  • Shorts
  • Swimwear
  • TShirts
  • Collared & long sleeve shirts to avoid sunburn
  • Light jacket and long pants for cooler evenings at sea
  • Good pair of hiking boots is recommended
  • Shoes you dont mind getting wet
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Toiletries

When joining a Coral Expeditions Cape York & Arnhem Land expedition, children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Coral Expeditions does not provide services of entertainment, supervision or care of children. Our Cape York & Arnhem Land itineraries are quite adventurous and we therefore recommend children aged above 14 years of age will enjoy the challenge and experience the most.

All cancellations must be in writing. Please note that all cancellations will incur an administration fee. Please see our terms and conditions  for details prior to booking.

  • Notification of cancellation must be received in writing. At the time we receive your cancellation the following penalties will apply:
  • Up to 90 days prior to departure - forfeit the 20% non-refundable deposit
  • 60 - 89 days prior to departure - forfeit 50% of the relevant fare
  • No-show to 59 days prior to departure - forfeit 100% of the relevant fare
  • Coral Expeditions considers a date and/or name change to be a cancellation of the original booking and will enforce relevant cancellation fees.
  • A $200 per person fee will be charged for any amendments not requiring a date change, name change or cancellation after booking is confirmed.
  • We strongly recommend that all passengers purchase cruise cancellation and interruption insurance as protection against any circumstance which may force you to cancel or leave a cruise while in progress. Given the remote nature of some of the locations visited during the expedition, we recommend that you include Remote Area Evacuation coverage within your policy. Cancellation fees will not be waived for any reason.
  • Passengers do not have the right to transfer their rights and obligations under these Cruise Ticket Conditions. The fare paid shall not be refundable except as permitted in these Cruise Ticket Conditions and the carrier will not be liable to make any refund to the passenger if the passenger fails to embark on the Ship for the Cruise.
  • Full payment due 30 days prior to travel

Cairns to Darwin 11 Night Cruise | Cape York and Arnhem Land | 29/03/20

Departing: Cairns

It's Awesome



Prices are AUD, per adult and include all levies fees and taxes.

Child: au$10,890.00
Family: au$43,560.00

Tour Code: 659



18 yrs & over

14 - 17 yrs

Ages of Children
(Discounts May Apply)
1300 231 118
+61 427 074 745
1300 231 118
+61 427 074 745

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