Qatar Airways Launches into the Cruise Market, Partnering with Ponant

Qatar Airways is partnering with the French shipping company to offer an exclusive and ultra-luxury expedition cruise to discover the Al Shaheen whale sharks. 

Le Champlain and Qatar Airways Partnering

Through its Discover Qatar subsidiary, the Qatar Airways Company has just announced that it is partnering with the ultra-luxury French company Ponant to venture into the world of expedition cruises with ‘Sharks-Whale of Qatar’: a package to watch closely the largest marine animal in the world.

On board Le Champlain, starting next April and with seven consecutive departures, the 8-night, 9-day all-inclusive itinerary will extend off the Al Shaheen region and the Qatari coast.

This means that guests will have the privilege of accessing the heterogeneous and beautiful ecosystem, which encompasses the restricted area of Al Shaheen, some 80 kilometers north of the Qatari coast, and world famous for the concentration of whale sharks.

Every year between April and September, these giants of the sea migrate in groups of hundreds to those central waters of the Arabian Gulf, to spend the summer of the Northern Hemisphere.

But in addition, Le Champlain guests will be able to snorkel among coral reefs and explore mangroves, or navigate the turquoise waters of the Khor Al Adiad channel accompanied by expert guides: marine biologists, naturalists and ornithologists who will help them appreciate the local fauna and flora.

Furthermore, the trip can also be extended to 10 nights and 11 days, which includes three nights in Doha, the capital of Qatar, to explore its cultural heritage, visit attractions and enjoy the vibrant life of Souk Waqif.

 “Qatar, with its exuberant wild and intact nature, surrounded by crystal clear waters and an ecosystem of unique biodiversity, offers exciting adventures that allow you to get in touch with nature and visit places that can only be accessed by sea,” said Akbar Al Baker, CEO of Qatar Airways.

“Passengers will enjoy five-star service, elegant facilities, tourist attractions and expeditions, while the highly experienced crew will ensure that the journey is safe and comfortable,” added Al Baker.

With innovative design features, functionalities and cutting-edge technology, 10,700 gt of gross tonnage, 192m in length, 18m of beam, 9 decks, 92 cabins and suites with the capacity to receive up to 184 guests in low beds, the Le Champlain is an expeditionary ultra-luxury and latest generation, which entered service in 2018.

On board, the high-end services include the attention of a dedicated butler 24 hours a day, two restaurants, a spa, an infinity pool and a ‘multi-sensory underwater lounge’ with large windows to observe the sea ‘from the inside’.

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