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Junba Dance performance in Jar Island, Kimberley (Photo: Seabourn)
Australia's Aboriginal Traditional Owners have been named godparents to Seabourn Pursuit(Photo: Seabourn)

Seabourn News: Australia's Wunambal Gaambera Traditional Owners Chosen as Godparents to Seabourn Pursuit

Junba Dance performance in Jar Island, Kimberley (Photo: Seabourn)
Australia's Aboriginal Traditional Owners have been named godparents to Seabourn Pursuit(Photo: Seabourn)
Jorge Oliver

Last updated
Apr 18, 2024

Read time
4 min read

(April 18, 2024) -- As Seabourn gears up to embark on voyages in Australia's Kimberley region this summer, the cruise line has announced that the Wunambal Gaambera Traditional Owners have been named godparent's to the luxury expedition vessel, Seabourn Pursuit.

The Wunambal Gaambera people are the native title holders of 6.2 million acres of land and maritime space in Australia's North Kimberley region. With the announcement, Seabourn becomes the first cruise line to appoint Traditional Owners as godparents of a cruise ship.

The cruise line said that the naming of Wunambal Gaambera Traditional Owners as godparents of Seabourn Pursuit serves as a symbolic gesture of stewardship and responsibility toward the environment as we as the communities that Seabourn visits.

"We, the Wunambal Gaambera people, have a communal need and responsibility to look after and prosper from our country. Seabourn's contributions will assist us to be on country, look after and keep our land and sea country healthy, strengthen our Wanjina Wunggurr culture, and create economic opportunities for our people," said Catherine Goonack, Chairperson of the Wunambal Gaambera Aboriginal Corporation.

In addition to naming the Wunambal Gaambera Traditional Owners as godparents to their new expedition ship, Seabourn will also make a donation to assist the community in developing a self-sustaining industry by producing authentic works of art and crafts that the Wunambal Gaambera artists can sell.

The cruise line has also committed to providing the Wunambal Gaambera Aboriginal Corporation with pearl shells and various arts supplies and polishing materials to foster year-round sustainable arts and crafts initiatives.

Seabourn passengers, meanwhile, will have the opportunity to experience the local Wanjina Wuggurr culture of northwestern Australia through activities like welcome and smoking ceremonies; rock art tours; junba song and dance; and art and stories from the Uunguu Rangers.

"We believe no one can give a better blessing to our ship than the communities we visit. We truly believe in the transformative power of travel, and when we visit local communities, we are able to both celebrate their culture and drive positive sustainable change in the places they call home," said Natalya Leahy, president of Seabourn Cruise Line.

Seabourn Pursuit's naming ceremony will take place on the ship's inaugural Kimberley voyage on June 12. The 264-passenger vessel will remain in the Kimberley until August, offering 10-day voyages in the region.

2025-26 Itineraries Feature New Destinations in Japan and Caribbean

Seabourn Ovation (Photo: Seabourn Cruises)
Seabourn Ovation (Photo: Seabourn Cruises)

(March 21, 2024) -- From Japanese hot springs to the oldest city in Colombia, Seabourn revealed its list of 2025-2026 itineraries aboard Seabourn Ovation, Seabourn Encore, Seabourn Quest and Seabourn Sojourn.

The luxury cruise line will offer a total of 72 itineraries ranging from seven to 22 days, to more than 105 destinations between September 2025 and March 2026. Some highlights include 14-day itineraries in Southeast Asia, a 20-day voyage to the Hawaiian Islands, a circumnavigation of the Japanese archipelago and maiden calls in the Caribbean.

"This collection of extraordinary voyages invites guests to become immersed in an ocean of ultra-luxury, personalized service, and discovery, exploring hidden gems and staying longer in iconic ports with overnight stays," said Natalya Leahy, president of Seabourn. “Our carefully curated itineraries will provide our guests with unforgettable ‘Seabourn Moments’ as they sail the high seas in Seabourn’s ultra-luxury style."

Seabourn Quest will visit more than 20 destinations in Japan between September and November 2025, marking the first time that the luxury cruise company offers sailings to explore the Asian country's fall foliage. The ship will make maiden calls to destinations like Akita, Ishinomak, Niigata and Wakayama.

In Southeast Asia, Seabourn Encore will sail on 14-day Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam itineraries between December 2025 and March 2026, all of which will include overnight stays in Ho Chi Minh City. The ship will also spend time in the Arabian Peninsula, offering 17- and 18-day voyages in November 2025 and April 2026.

In the Caribbean, Seabourn Ovation will offer a total of 27 departures between November 2025 and March 2026. The ships will visit 23 destinations in the region, including maiden calls to Little Bay in Montserrat and an exclusive beach experience in Anguilla's Prickly Pear Cays.

Seabourn Sojourn will cross the Panama Canal in November 2025, visiting destinations in the Southern Caribbean and the Pacific coast of Central America, as well as the Hawaiian Islands. Some highlights of Seabourn Sojourn's trek include a Christmas Eve overnight stay in Honolulu, and a visit to Colombia's Tayrona National Park from the port city of Santa Marta.

--Jorge Oliver, Editor

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