Experience the thrill of riding the Horizontal Falls in inflatable Zodiac tender vessels
Get up close to Montgomery Reef and discover the tidal reef’s diverse marine life
Experience King George River and 80m tall twin King George waterfalls
Cruise the Prince Regent River to the ‘hanging garden’ King Cascade waterfall
Visit Indigenous rock art galleries and learn about ancient Wandjina and Gwion Gwion art
Spot native wildlife and birdlife in their natural habitat
View the Kimberley landscape by air on a scenic helicopter flight to Mitchell Falls (additional cost)
Enjoy sunset canapés and drinks on the beach as dusk settles over the Kimberley
The Kimberley Cruise | Darwin - Broome
Travel DatesLast minute availablity - July and Aug 2021. 2022 and 2023 bookings available
Sale EndsDec 31, 2021
Priced From$10,990 per person
Embark: On the day of your departure, arrive at Darwin Cruise Terminal at 7:00am to meet with the Coral Expeditions team and check in for your expedition cruise. Boarding will begin from 8:30am for 9:00am departure.
Disembark: Arrive and disembark at Broome Wharf at 8:00am.
The below itinerary is indicative. No two cruises with Coral Expeditions will be the same, with each expedition crafted by our experienced Masters and Expedition Leaders. 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 may affect the operation of the vessel. Coral Expeditions suggests that you do not arrive on the day of embarkation or depart on the day of disembarkation due to any changes that may occur in scheduling.
*Please note, the Mitchell Falls helicopter for Coral Discoverer 17th October 2021 & Coral Adventurer 24th October 2021 departures is currently unconfirmed. Further information will be provided closer to the date.
DAY 1: DEPART DARWIN
Board your Coral Expeditions ship at 8.00am where there is time to settle into your cabin before our 9:00am departure. Spend a luxuriant sea day at leisure as we cruise across Joseph Bonaparte Gulf and sail into Western Australian waters.
Take the time to become acquainted with all the facilities onboard and join our Expedition Team in the Lounge for an insightful introduction to the Kimberley. As dusk falls meet your fellow travellers, the Captain and crew for the Captain’s Welcome Drinks.
KING GEORGE RIVER AND FALLS
Fed by the King George River draining across the Gardner Plateau, 80m tall King George Falls are the most impressive Kimberley waterfalls and the highest twin falls in Western Australia. Before reaching the mist-like spray rising from the base of King George Falls, we cruise through steep-sided gorges carved by a flooded river system that carved a swathe through the Kimberley landscape 400 million years ago.
Early in the waterfall season, we may cruise around the base of impressive King George Falls while in later months we take the opportunity to view the honeycomb erosion patterns of sandstone cliffs up close.
Vansittart Bay is home to many cultural and historically significant sites like the remarkable Gwion Gwion (Bradshaw) Aboriginal rock art galleries estimated to be up to 20,000 years old. Jar Island is so-named after the pot shards found here, brought to the island by Macassan fisherman harvesting sea cucumbers (also known as trepang).
Nearby, on the Anjo Peninsula lays the well-preserved wreckage of a US Airforce C-53 Skytrooper aircraft, the result of a pilot losing his bearings flying from Perth to Broome in 1942 and putting down on a salt pan near present-day Truscott Airbase.
MITCHELL FALLS, WINYALKAN, & SWIFT BAY
Tumbling down the Mitchell Plateau in a series of tiered waterfalls and emerald green rock pools, the Mitchell Falls are the photogenic poster child for the Mitchell River National Park. Take a scenic helicopter flight (additional cost) to multi-tiered Mitchell Falls where emerald-hued rock pools cascade down the escarpment and ancient rock art galleries are concealed in caves behind curtains of water.
Mitchell River National Park is inhabited by significant numbers of mammals, amphibians, reptiles and bird species which are lured by a year-round water source. Sandstone terraces beside tiered rock pools make a terrific viewing platform from which to savor the serenity of this ancient landscape.
An alternative option to Mitchell Falls is exploring the sandstone caves of Wollaston Bay or Wollaston Creek. This mass of weathered tunnels, arches and columns form a labyrinth-like maze and was once an Aboriginal midden. Another option while anchored at Winyalkan Bay is a visit to a series Wandjina and Gwion Gwion rock art galleries at Swift Bay.
In the evening we will enjoy watching the sunset over the Indian Ocean while indulging in a gourmet BBQ.
PRINCE FREDERICK HARBOUR
Prince Frederick Harbour is one of the Kimberley’s most spectacular locations at the southern end of York Sound. The harbour is dotted with islands lined with mangroves and monsoon rainforests, set against a backdrop of the ochre-hued escarpment.
White-bellied sea eagles and other birds of prey are often seen here, and at low tide, expansive mudflats reveal large populations of mudskippers and mangrove crabs. We will take our Xplorer tender vessels on a cruise up Porosus Creek to view some striking rock formations.
PRINCE REGENT RIVER & CAREENING BAY
King Cascade is a classically beautiful terraced waterfall and is one of the most photographed waterfalls in the Kimberley. Falling from a considerable height and around 50m across, water tumbles down a staggered terrace of Kimberley sandstone. Layer upon layer of ochre-hued and blackened rock sprouts grasses, mosses and ferns in a sort of lushly vegetated hanging garden.
We reach King Cascade after cruising in our Xplorer tender vessels down the steep-sided Prince Regent River which is a remarkable anomaly as the river runs dead straight along a fault line.
Lt. Phillip Parker King named nearby Careening Bay after he beached his leaking vessel HMC Mermaid to effect repairs. While stranded on this remote coastline for 17 days the ship’s carpenter carved HMC Mermaid 1820 into the bottle-shaped trunk of a boab tree near the beach. 200 years later, the Mermaid Boab Tree has since split into two trunks and sports a mammoth girth of 12m. Significantly, the bulbous tree is listed on the National Register of Big Trees and the carpenter’s careful inscription now stands almost as tall as a person.
Montgomery Reef is a biologically diverse area covering over 300 sq km and was named by Phillip Parker King. Twice daily, as the sea recedes in mammoth 11m tides, Montgomery Reef rises from the Indian Ocean in a cascade of rushing water revealing a flat-topped reef pockmarked with rock pools and rivulets.
As the reef emerges, we get up close in our Xplorer and Zodiac inflatable tenders to witness the spectacle as our Expedition Team share their knowledge on the formation of the reef and the myriad wildlife. Opportunistic birds take advantage of the emerging reef, feeding on marine life left exposed in rock pools. Turtles, dolphins, dugongs and sawfish too are also attracted to feeding opportunities as the ocean recedes.
The ocean is awash in a swirl of eddies and whirlpools as the moon’s gravitational force takes hold. Then, a few hours later the entire water-borne drama is reversed as the tide comes in and Montgomery Reef disappears below sea level.
Raft Point guards the entrance to Doubtful Bay, a vast body of sheltered water which harbours significant sites such as the ancient Wandjina rock art galleries located a short walk from the beach and are considered some of the finest in the Kimberley and we visit the rock art galleries when Traditional Owners are available to guide us. Doubtful Bay is the traditional country of the Worrora people who follow the Wandjina, their god, law-maker and creator. Images of Wandjina are found throughout the Kimberley, recording their stories, knowledge and culture in stone.
Red Cone Creek flows gently downstream until it meets the small but impressive Ruby Falls. Named by local mariner Capt. Chris Trucker after his daughter, Red Cone Creek is carved through rock formations stacked atop each other like building blocks. These rock walls are great for climbing and clambering over before reaching a series of freshwater swimming holes and waterfalls. The falls may be a gurgling torrent or a gentle trickle, depending on the time of the year.
Other sites we aim to visit in Doubtful Bay include the mighty Steep Island and Ruby Falls at Red Cone Creek.
HORIZONTAL FALLS AND BUCCANEER ARCHIPELAGO
The Horizontal Falls are one of the Kimberley’s biggest attractions and are a result of the mammoth 11m tides the Kimberley is renowned for. Naturalist David Attenborough described the Horizontal Falls as ‘one of the greatest natural wonders of the world.’
The Horizontal Falls are created as the ocean thunders through a narrow gorge in the McLarty Ranges. Water builds up on one side and is forcibly pushed through the bottleneck, creating a rushing horizontal waterfall of swiftly flowing seawater. Riding the rapids on our Zodiac inflatable tenders is one of the highlights of our Kimberley expedition cruises.
Talbot Bay is at the heart of the Buccaneer Archipelago, where rocks on the 800 or so islands are estimated at over 2 billion years old. At Cyclone Creek, you will see evidence of massive geological forces in the impressive rock formations and cruise through the Iron Islands, past Koolan Island, before enjoying sunset drinks at Nares Point.
THE LACEPEDE ISLANDS
The Lacepede Islands are a protected class-A nature reserve and are significant as a seabird nesting rookery for brown boobies and roseate terns. Other species often sighted at the Lacepedes include Australian Pelicans, frigate birds, egrets and gulls. The four low-lying islands are also an important breeding and nesting habitat for green turtles.
If weather and tide conditions are suitable, we will explore the lagoons by Xplorer and Zodiac tender vessels.
As our incredible Kimberley adventures draw to a close, on our last evening aboard we enjoy the Captain’s farewell drinks amongst new-found friends.
DAY 11: ARRIVE IN BROOME
To make a reservation you have to pay a deposit of 20% of the fare. The balance of the fare is due ninety (90) days prior to departure. All prices are quoted in Australian dollars.
CANCELLATION AND REFUND POLICY:
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 your deposit of 20% of the fare.
60 to 89 days prior to departure – forfeit 50% of the fare.
No-show to 59 days prior to departure – forfeit 100% of the fare.
Date change fee made more than 90 days before departure – $500pp fee.
Date change within 90 days of departure is considered a cancellation and standard Cancellation Policy applies.
A name change/transfer of the booking to another person is considered a cancellation and Cancellation Penalties (as above) will apply.
A $200 per person fee is applicable for any amendments not requiring a date change after booking is confirmed.
TRIP CANCELLATION AND INTERRUPTION INSURANCE:
It is a requirement for all guests to have travel insurance coverage to voyage. Travel Insurance is not included in your cruise fare. We advise that you purchase comprehensive travel insurance that includes (without limitation) coverage for the cost of your cruise, medical expenses, loss of luggage, cruise and land content and airfare charges that may occur due to cancellation, the impossibility of performance or unexpected events including other frustration, disruption, loss of deposit or strikes. This is a policy that protects you.
Accommodation on the Ship is based on twin share occupancy. If you are travelling alone and wish to share accommodation, a room mate will be assigned to your cabin whenever possible. When pairing room mates we always pair participants of the same sex. In the event of a share partner not being found, standard twin share stateroom rate will be applied.
Upon payment of the fare for the Cruise and the confirmation of the booking by us or our authorised travel agent a Contract is concluded between us (the carrier) and you (the passenger) concerning the Cruise in terms of these Cruise Ticket Conditions. Any payment of the cruise fare implies acceptance of all Terms and Conditions.
In these Cruise Ticket Conditions:
“brochure” means this brochure and any other promotional material published by the Carrier with reference to the Cruise.
“carrier” means and includes Coral Expeditions, the Ship, the Ship’s owners, operators, managers, charterers, agents, sub-contractors and employees.
“Coral Expeditions” means Coral Princess Cruises (NQ) Pty Ltd (A.B.N 51 010 809 417) of Hartley Street, Cairns, Queensland, Australia.
“Cruise” means the passage agreed to be undertaken by the carrier in the Contract.
“passenger” means each person purchasing or accepting the Contract entitled to board the Ship for the Cruise.
“Queensland” means the State of Queensland in the Commonwealth of Australia.
“the Ship” means the Cruise Ship used by the carrier to conduct the Cruise.
“Unexpected Event” means any act, circumstance or event beyond the control of the carrier caused or arising from but not limited to acts of God, public enemies, government restraint, riots, strikes, lockouts, labour troubles, epidemic, civil disturbances, perils of the sea, harbours, rivers or other navigable waters, fuel shortages or abrupt and unexpected increases in fuel costs, collisions, stranding, fire, lightning, storm, rough and adverse sea conditions, tidal waves, cyclones, theft, barratry or any other crime by any person, faults or errors of navigation or management of the Ship or any other vessel, explosions, breakage of shafts or any defect or unseaworthiness in hull, machinery or appurtenances, equipment, furnishings or supplies of the Ship or launches or vehicles or any defect of the carrier’s premises, fault or neglect of pilots, tugs, crew, agents or independent contractors, port closures, delays in allocation and permits to berth the Ship at ports on arrival and seizure of the Vessel under legal process.
Where this brochure contains particulars of our conditions or policy about reservation procedures, bookings, cancellations, refunds of fares and itineraries for the Cruise then it forms part of these Cruise Ticket Conditions and if there is any inconsistency these Cruise Ticket Conditions shall prevail.
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.
CRUISE CHANGES, DELAYS OR CANCELLATIONS:
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 change the itinerary, the Ship or cancel the Cruise 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. If the carrier cancels the Cruise for any other reason the carrier will refund the fare paid and if the departure of a Cruise is delayed or if the Cruise itinerary is shortened for any other reason the carrier will refund part of the fare paid on a pro rata basis to allow for the time lost. So far as these Cruise Ticket Conditions constitute a contract for the supply of services then and in no event shall the liability of the carrier to the passenger for a breach of an express or implied condition or warranty in that respect exceed, at the election of the carrier:
an obligation on the part of the carrier to supply the services again, or;
the refund or payment to the passenger of an amount equal to the fare paid by the passenger for the Cruise.
PASSENGER HEALTH AND RESPONSIBILITY:
The passenger admits a full understanding of the nature and character of the Ship and the scope of the activities contemplated by the passenger during the Cruise (including those relating to off Ship activities such as excursions in the Ship’s tenders, snorkelling and diving) and assures and undertakes to the carrier:-
that they are in good health and well able to undertake the Cruise and the contemplated activities;
that they will effect travel insurance sufficient to cover any limitation of liability against them imposed by these Cruise Ticket Conditions should they wish to do so;
that they accept the risk that they may suffer from sea sickness;
that they have disclosed any physical or mental disability requiring special attention (including the use of a wheelchair) or treatment at the time when the reservation for the Cruise was made;
that no passenger will be permitted to embark or continue on a voyage while their mental or physical condition is, in the opinion of any representative of the carrier, such as to render them incapable of caring for themselves, or whereby they become objectionable to other passengers, or they become a hazard to themselves or others. The carrier will not be responsible for any expenses resulting in such persons being precluded from completing the cruise;
that the passenger accepts that a medical certificate certifying fitness for travel may be required at the carrier’s request and if any passenger has had surgery less than twelve (12) months prior to sailing that passenger must submit a letter from a qualified physician stating that he or she is fit to travel and the carrier reserves the right to deny passage if a passenger requires care and attention which the carrier cannot adequately provide and this decision may be made by the carrier in its sole discretion;
The carrier reserves the right to refuse or deny participation in activities or programmes either aboard the Ship or off Ship which are sponsored or promoted by the carrier to any passenger who has a past or present medical condition that may present risks if the passenger participates in those activities and any decision in this respect may be made by the carrier in its sole discretion;
Any charges incurred by passengers for medical reasons including but not limited to physicians, surgeons, hospitals, off Ship accommodation, medication, diagnostic facilities, air ambulance evacuation or ground ambulance shall be the sole responsibility of the passenger;
for the safety and comfort of passengers smoking is not permitted in the Ship except on designated open deck spaces outside all air-conditioned and sealed areas of the Ship;
and the passenger agrees to indemnify the carrier from and against all claims, costs, charges, fines or penalties arising as a result of any claim made against the carrier in this respect.
LIMITATION OF CARRIER’S LIABILITY:
The liability of the carrier to the passenger is limited with respect to both personal injury and damage to loss of property to the full extent permitted by law and in terms of these Cruise Ticket Conditions. The carrier accepts no responsibility or liability to the passenger for loss, death, or delay of, or injury to any passenger or loss, damage or delay to a passenger’s baggage, personal effects or other property arising from or caused by an Unexpected Event. These Cruise Ticket Conditions remain in effect for all periods when the carrier is under any responsibility to the passenger or the passenger’s property. No variation or waiver of any term or condition of these Cruise Ticket Conditions will have any effect unless they are in writing and signed by the carrier. No undertaking, guarantee or warranty is given or shall be implied as to the seaworthiness, fitness or condition of the Ship. In addition to any other limitation of liability contained in these Cruise Ticket Conditions the carrier shall have the benefit of any statutory limitation of liability available in Queensland including but not limited to the Limitation of Liability for Maritime Claims Act 1989 (Cwth). Where tours and services of operators other than the carrier are engaged e.g. tour operators and hoteliers, which are not under the control of the carrier, whilst the carrier takes all reasonable care in selecting these operators it cannot accept responsibility for those operators’ conduct or the conduct of their representative employees or agents or for any ramifications of that conduct.
PASSPORT AND ENTRY VISAS:
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.
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 has made recommendations with respect to baggage in the brochure. Baggage should be prominently marked with the name and address of the passenger. The passenger must not bring on board the Ship in baggage or otherwise any dangerous or inflammable substance including any prohibited drug or non-prescribed drug. Liquor laws prohibit passengers from bringing supplies of alcohol or liquor on board the Ship. Baggage remaining unclaimed on arrival of the Ship will be stored at the passenger’s sole risk and expense. The carrier is not responsible for money, jewellery, documents and any other valuables which passengers keep on their person, in their cabins or in their baggage and the carrier strongly recommends that passengers obtain adequate insurance to cover any loss or damage in this respect. In no event will the carrier’s responsibility or liability to the passenger for loss of baggage or personal effects exceed $100 and the passenger agrees to indemnify and keep indemnified the carrier from and against any claims made against the carrier in excess of this amount in this respect.
The carrier will not be liable to passengers for any injuries or damage which occur while the passenger is participating in recreational activities aboard the Vessel or otherwise including but not limited to passenger participating in snorkelling or scuba diving programmes. By utilising these facilities passengers agree to assume all risks associated with those activities and fully release and discharge the carrier from any and all claims, demands, damages, causes of action, present or future, resulting from or arising out of the passenger’s use of or participation in those facilities. The passenger may be required to sign a release or waiver prior to undertaking these activities and the carrier will be entitled to refuse to allow the passenger to participate in those activities if the waiver or release is not signed by the passenger prior to participation in those activities.
Should any provision of these Cruise Ticket Conditions be contrary to or invalid by virtue of the laws of Queensland or the Commonwealth of Australia or for any other reason the relevant provision will be deemed to be severed from these Cruise Ticket Conditions and shall be of no effect but all remaining provisions shall remain in full force and effect. These Cruise Ticket Conditions shall be governed in all respects by the laws of Queensland and the passenger agrees that any claims or disputes between the passenger and the carrier in connection with these Cruise Ticket Conditions shall be commenced, filed and litigated before a Court of proper jurisdiction in Queensland and if possible in the State of Queensland.
WHAT TO EXPECT:
For most activities a relatively low level of exertion is required. You will need to climb into and out of zodiacs and other excursion tenders for excursions ashore: there will be staff and crew members on hand to assist. Ashore, you must be able to walk moderate distances over sometimes rough terrain. Although our new ship Coral Adventurer features a lift, it is still essential that all guests have reasonable agility to use the steep stairways between decks. Participants will most enjoy the remarkable opportunities these expeditions offer if they travel with a spirit of adventure.