Cape York & Arnhem Land: Saltwater People of Northern Australia

from$ 10695 AUD

Note: Current p/p indicative rate. Final price may change due to currency fluctuations.

Coral Discoverer
Darwin to Cairns


Commencing in Darwin, voyage to the Tiwi Islands, and experience unique cultural performances and a tour of the history of the islands. A visit to Tiwi Designs, one of the oldest and most artistically diverse art centres in Australia, reveals the rich artistic heritage in stunning carvings, paintings, and fabric printing. Cruising on to the Cobourg Peninsula, you will experience the landscape of Arnhem Land as you visit the failed Victoria Settlement. At Maningrida, visit the Arts Centre, the Djomi Museum, and the Babbarra Women’s Centre. The Maningrida Arts and Culture Centre is home to exquisite bark paintings and weavings that represent the 12 language areas that come together here. The Babbarra Women’s Centre is the base for Babbarra Designs, where local women design and hand-print exquisite textiles which tell the ancestral stories of Arnhem Land, and are sold around the world. Be welcomed to remote townships on Elcho Island, and visit the Elcho Island Art Centre at Galiwin’ku. Each stop is another opportunity to experience the creative expression of one of the world’s oldest cultures and hear their stories. As your journey continues, our guest lecturers introduce you to the friends they have made in each location, and present lectures on Indigenous art and culture, as well as the natural history of this ancient country. Visit the spectacular Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Centre at Yirrkala. This community-controlled art gallery and museum showcases the beautiful artwork from the North-East Arnhem region, and its artists have exhibited all over the world. We continue on to visit Thursday Island, and other Torres Strait Islands. Here you start to experience the traditional and contemporary blend of Indigenous and Torres Strait art forms. Old stories and motifs are infused with energy as present and alive as when they were first created. Visit Gab Titui Cultural Centre on Thursday Island, a keeping place for the art of the Torres Strait. As you sail south, visit remarkable Stanley Island where you will see rock art from the contact period, and hear from Traditional Owners about the history of the island. Continue on to Lizard Island and have an opportunity to snorkel on the reef.


  • 12 Days
  • Coral Discoverer

Cruise Itinerary

  • Darwin (Australia)
  • Cairns (Australia)
  • Northern Australia


Note: Current p/p indicative rate. Final price may change due to currency fluctuations.

Cruise Itinerary

Board at Darwin’s Fort Hill Wharf at 5:00pm ahead of our 6:00pm departure. Spend time getting to know your fellow travellers and enjoy the Captain’s Welcome Drinks before the first of many delicious dinners

Visit Bathurst and Melville Islands. With traditional Tiwi people as our guides, we learn of their unique cultures and visit the fascinating art centre to peruse wonderful screen-printing, art, woodcarvings and pottery. Witness a smoking ceremony, traditional basket weaving and morning tea with the locals, over freshly cooked damper and billy tea.

On Cobourg Peninsula, visit the ruins of the failed Victoria Settlement at Port Essington and explore the ruins under the guidance of the National Park Rangers. We also visit the Ranger’s Interpretation Centre at Black Point

Anchor in the mighty Liverpool River and 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 the ship.

The friendly locals of Elcho Island proudly welcome us to their community this morning. Meet some of the local artists who have their unique art exhibited in the famous art galleries of the world including the Louvre. This evening we enjoy a gourmet Aussie beach BBQ on one of the beautiful islands as we toast the sunset over the Arafura Sea.

Today we sail through the ‘Hole in the Wall’ to the Wessel Islands. This evening we enjoy a gourmet Aussie Beach BBQ and watch the sun spectacularly set over the Arafura Sea.

Enjoy a relaxing day at sea with presentations by our expert Guest Lecturers. You will hear about the fascinating history of the Macassan traders and early explorers of the Arnhem Land coast.

Embark on a short tour of Horn Island prior to our transfer by ferry to Thursday Island where we rejoin Coral Discoverer. During the tour of Thursday Island, we learn of the history of European settlement and the large pearling fleets and observe the distinctly different cultures of the Torres Strait Islanders and Aboriginal tribes. Following a short cruise to Cape York, we travel ashore and enjoy the sunset and champagne at the ‘Tip’ of Australia.

Enjoy the day exploring historic Forbes Island and take advantage of the fantastic swimming and snorkelling opportunities. Enjoy a short walk to the summit and enjoy the outlook over the surrounding reef and islands.

At Davie Reef and Cay, we enjoy swimming and snorkelling and observe the large seabird rookery. Go ashore at Stanley Island where our Expedition Leader and guides will escort you to view the Endaen Aboriginal rock art gallery depicting sailing ships of the last century. This is a unique art site seldom visited due to its isolated location.

Spend the day at one of the most beautiful islands on the Queensland Coast. Climb to Cook’s Look or enjoy swimming and snorkelling and a beach walk. Subject to availability, we may be invited as special guests to visit the Lizard Island Research Station, where we learn more about the research being undertaken to help understand and preserve the Great Barrier Reef.

Arrive in Cairns and disembark at 8:00am

This itinerary is an indication of the destinations we visit and activities on offer. Throughout the expedition we may make changes to the itinerary as necessary to maximise your expeditionary experience. Allowances may be made for seasonal variations, weather, tidal conditions and any other event that

Coral Discoverer

Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition Length: 63 metres Passenger Capacity: 72 (in 36 rooms) Built: 2005 / Refurbished: 2016 Launched in 2005, Coral Discoverer set a new benchmark standard for small ship cruising in Australia. Refurbished in November 2016, she continues to raise the bar to new levels of sophistication in expedition cruising in the Southern Hemisphere. The 1800-tonne Coral Discoverer is the grand vision of Coral Expeditions, pioneers in expedition and adventure cruises around Australia, Papua New Guinea and South East Asia. Her shallow draught and manoeuvrability allow her to go where larger vessels cannot. Her tender vessel, Xplorer, can seat all 72 passengers for excursions to beaches and rivers. Coral Discoverer is equipped with latest technology active stabilisers to ensure comfortable cruising in open waters and is fitted with modern safety and navigation equipment and wireless internet facilities. Coral Discoverer was built to the exacting international SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) standards and specifications in Cairns, Australia, with one aim in mind; to create the ultimate small ship cruising experience. Australian flagged, and staffed entirely by an Australian and New Zealand crew, your experience aboard Coral Discoverer will be unique. After the refurbishment, the Sun Deck has evolved to become a new social space and the hub of on board community living. This area has been converted into an undercover deck area complete with round ‘Explorer Bar’ with bar stools and sun deck with lounges and an area for outdoor exercise equipment. Guest accommodation has also received a substantial upgrade with the addition of six Bridge Deck Balcony Staterooms providing coveted inside/outside living quarters. Each of our other Stateroom grades has also received a full upgrade with updated bathroom fixtures, soft furnishings and artwork making for an even more comfortable stay on board Coral Discoverer. The Coral Discoverer offers five different grades of staterooms, ranging from Bridge Deck Balcony Staterooms to Main Deck Staterooms. Bridge Deck Balcony Staterooms are on the top deck and have private balconies opening out from french windows. All rooms are furnished with contemporary flair and feature original artwork, a small private en-suite, individually-controlled air-conditioning, an iPod dock, ample storage and Australian toiletries. All staterooms are serviced daily. Each stateroom is spacious, sized between 15sqm (161 square feet) to 20 sqm (215 square feet) and has either a balcony, feature picture windows or porthole windows. Most staterooms can be configured to either junior king or twin bedding. FACILITIES ON BOARD > Sun Deck with undercover area, sun lounges and ample seating > Three fully stocked cocktail bars, including brand new round Explorer Bar on Sun Deck > Spacious, modern dining room, recently refurbished > Forward lounge > Reference library > Gift shop > Open bridge > Workout Area > Wireless internet available for laptops, mobile devices or via onboard guest computer > Limited laundry facilities available > SCUBA diving department (selected itineraries)


• Explore the Northern Australian coastline and immerse yourself in the diverse cultures of Indigenous Australia, with this exclusive Cape York & Arnhem Land itinerary. • This expedition will be focusing on Indigenous Australian art. On board, you will create your own unique pieces during art classes. The art classes will enrich your journey and provide insights into the skills, stories, and creative legacy of the northern Australian communities you visit.