Cruise & Travel Lifestyles

Explore to Inspire with Ponant and Smithsonian Journeys

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From the ice of Antarctica to the lagoons of the Pacific, from Caribbean to Arabian shores, Ponant has been sailing all the seas of the world for over thirty years, aboard ships that are designed to welcome aboard a limited number of guests (a maximum of 270). This philosophy, a far cry from the current industry trend towards gigantism, gives Ponant’s fleet of 12 ships a human dimension and an intimate country club style atmosphere on board. Furthermore, it allows them to access less-crowded ports of call and remote locations, and provides guests a genuine aura of exploration, together with Ponant’s attentive and personalized service on each specially curated voyage.

Established in 1988 by officers of the French Merchant Navy, Ponant created a new style of cruising under the French flag through the unique conception of sea travel and a commitment to promoting sustainable tourism. Together with Smithsonian Journeys, the travel program of the Smithsonian Institution which draws back on 175 years of Smithsonian resources, Ponant's Smithsonian Journeys embrace cultural immersion and discovery, with the goal of further inspiring guests to become global citizens through travel.

Smithsonian Journeys Experts, chosen for their expertise, charisma, and affability, accompany select Ponant departures, specially tailored for English-speaking travellers, and are the secret ingredient that can create unforgettable travel experiences. Their enthusiasm is contagious, and their experience brings depth, enrichment, and substance to the cruises they host.

Explore a small selection of Ponant's 2023 Smithsonian Journeys below:

Celtic Voyage: The Hebrides and the Irish Sea

8-nights London to Glasgow aboard Le Dumont-D’Urville

May 5 – 13, 2023

Scottish Isles and Norwegian Fjords

7-nights Glasgow to Bergen aboard Le Dumont-D’Urville

May 27 – June 3, 2023

Cruising the Greek Islands of the Southern Aegean

7-nights Athens Roundtrip aboard Le Jacques-Cartier

July 12 – 19, 2023

Cruising the Historic Cities of the Baltic Sea

8-nights Stockholm to Copenhagen aboard Le Champlain

August 10 – 18, 2023

Iceland Voyage: Land of Fire and Ice

7-nights Reykjavik Roundtrip aboard Le Bellot

August 13 – 20, 2023

Cruising the Dalmatian Coast and the Ionian Sea

7-nights Athens to Venice aboard Le Lyrial

September 17 – 24, 2023

Cruising the Mediterranean: Greece, Sicily, and Malta

7-nights Athens to Valletta aboard Le Jacques-Cartier

September 26 – October 3, 2023

Southern France and the Italian Riviera

8-nights Barcelona to Rome aboard Le Champlain

October 8 – 16, 2023

Ponant / Smithsonian Journeys cruises include:

  • Two Smithsonian Journeys Experts to provide onboard and on land enrichment
  • One Ponant travel director
  • Transfers between the airport and the ship on embarkation and disembarkation days
  • One included shore excursion or activity in each port of call
  • All meals aboard ship
  • Complimentary open bar including select wines served with lunch and dinner
  • Welcome and farewell cocktail receptions
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi aboard ship
  • Gratuities to shipboard personnel, porters, guides, and drivers
  • Port taxes and charges

Contact your travel professional for further details.Visit here for a complete list of available 2023 & 2024 Smithsonian Journeys departures.

Terms, conditions and restrictions apply; pricing, availability, and other details subject to change and/ or apply to US or Canadian residents. Please confirm details and booking information with your travel advisor.