japan, natural archipelago and secular heritage
locationKagoshima - Kobe - Asia
Japan, natural archipelago and secular heritage
FromAUD $12,928
94% of travelers recommend this experience

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13 days
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With featured guest Christine Ockrent, journalist specialising in French and international news and geopolitical questions, author of some fifteen books.

With this brand-new itinerary, PONANT is inviting you aboard Le Jacques-Cartier for a unique expedition cruise between Kagoshima and Kobe. A magical 9-day trip to discover some of the natural gems and ancestral heritage of western Kyushu, as well as picturesque villages in the Seto Inland Sea, the theatre of many battles and historic events that have shaped its myth and grandeur over time and with the ebb and flow of the tides.  

After setting sail from Kagoshima, a bustling city nestling between ancient forests and majestic volcanoes, Le Jacques-Cartier will travel westward to reach the fascinating Koshikijima Islands.

Aboard one of our inflatable dinghies, admire the raw and authentic beauty composed of monumental cliffs and huge rock formations dating back to the Cretaceous period, nearly 80 million years ago. You will be captivated by these landscapes unlike any other.

Between the Yatsushiro and Ariake seas, off the coast of Nagasaki, succumb to the charms of the island region of Amakusa, once the refuge of Christians fleeing the ban on Catholicism in the 17th century during the Edo period.  In Sakitsu, you will have the privilege of immersing yourself in this ancestral heritage, particularly as you visit the emblematic UNESCO-listed church. Christian heritage can also be found further north, in the Goto Islands, on Kamigoto Island. Here, each small town bears traces of this influence that is still very much present, as evidenced by the many religious buildings dotting Kamigoto.

Then you will sail to South Korea, a small peninsula that juts out into the Sea of Japan, and discover Busan, South Korea's second city. A place of great contrasts, Busan offers a spectacular view over its port, as well as over the ancient district of Chalgachi.

Back in Japan, you will set out to discover Moji, on the northern tip of the island of Kyushu. In the past a strategic site for maritime trade with China, this stunning city of picturesque little streets will enthral you with its preserved architectural heritage evoking the traditional Japan of the Meiji era and the end of the 19th century. From the top of the Mojiko Retro Observation Room, you will be able to enjoy an exceptional panorama, a poetic combination of shinto sanctuaries and captivating maritime landscapes.

After a trip aboard one of our zodiac inflatables, in the picturesque fishing villages of Shimokamagari and Mitarai, you will head to Onomichi, a charming coastal town surrounded by green hills and home to a large number of temples and emblematic shrines, including the Senk?-ji, Saikoku-ji, and J?do-ji temples. Then, you will visit Tomonoura, known for its gentle way of life and its craggy landscapes, which inspired the artist Hayao Miyazaki for the animated film Ponyo.

Finally, for a grand finale, your journey will end in Kobe, your disembarkation port.


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