New Zealand's Gastronomic Cruises: Discovering Tropical and Polar Regions in One Journey

New Zealand's Gastronomic Cruises: Discovering Tropical and Polar Regions in One Journey
Courtesy of Ponant

There has been a renewal of the partnership between Ponant cruises and Relais & Châteaux to create two distinct voyages centered around the country of the islands.

There are two reasons to rejoice for gourmets in New Zealand, especially if you're a fan.

There was an announcement made by Ponant cruises and the five-star hotel group Relais & Châteaux on Wednesday that they would renew their partnership in order to offer new exclusive gastronomic voyages in New Zealand in 2023. 

In 2020, the two companies joined forces to create three extravagant gourmet cruises from Asia to France, and this year, they are offering a tropical and polar excursion around the island country of New Zealand. 

Courtesy of Ponant

From November 25 to December 3, Ponant is offering a nine-day tropical cruise, entitled New Zealand's South Island and Chatham Islands, that will depart from Wellington, New Zealand's capital city, and take passengers along the eastern coast of the southwestern island. 

During your journey, you will be able to visit the Marlborough Sounds and the rocky Kairkoura peninsula along the way, while taking in sights of the 80 million-year-old Chatham Islands, the lush landscapes of the Banks Peninsula and some of the island's wildlife.

Upon visiting the bay of Akaroa, that exists in the crater of an ancient flooded volcano, you will be given the opportunity to learn about the history of the indigenous people of New Zealand. 

A number of New Zealand-inspired dishes will be prepared by chef Norka Mella Munoz onboard La Lepérouse, as demonstrations and gala dinners will be held onboard the vessel.

It is highly recommended that you book a four-day, three-night pre-voyage program at the Relais & Chateaux Wharekaujau Country Estate where Munoz is the head chef, so you can further immerse yourself in the local culture and cuisine.

Courtesy of Ponant

It is also possible to embark on an arctic voyage aboard the ship La Lepérouse as an alternative to the Ancient Fjords and Unspoiled Islands of Southern New Zealand trip. For the duration of the cruise, which will take place from December 3rd until December 10th, you will be sailing in the vicinity of Fjordland National Park. 

As one of the most beautiful and jaw-dropping places on Earth, Te Wahipounamu has been listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, a collection of fjords that have been formed by millions of years of glaciation.

One of the highlights of the trip is the visit to the Snares Islands, a subantarctic archipelago in New Zealand, and the visit to Ulva Island, a predator-free sanctuary where a wide variety of birds as well as rare plants can be found here. 

In preparation for the ancient fjord voyage, Jimmy McIntyre, a chef at the Otahuna Lodge, will prepare meals inspired by New Zealand's cuisine.

In accordance with Jimmy's philosophy, the dishes at Otahuna Lodge are prepared using 140 varieties of organic fruits, mushrooms, nuts, and vegetables grown in the lodge's century-old gardens, which are curated in accordance with this philosophy.

Now is a great time to explore New Zealand since there has never been a better time to do so.

Ponant offers a tour of New Zealand's South Island and Chatham Islands that begins at the end of June at a cost of $6,810 per person. This tour is scheduled to begin at the end of June. Taking a tour of the Ancient Fjords and Unspoiled Islands of Southern New Zealand will cost you $6,670 per person. This is based on the assumption that two people will be sharing both of the rooms at the same time.

Zach Sean (@probszachsean) is a contributor for TIRED. He writes nothing, but thinks a lot about eating, Spider-Man, and The Legend of Zelda. Zach likes long walkies, is mostly potty-trained, and plays well with others (most of the time).

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