March 14 to 30, 2012
Travel with Professor Bob Siegel, MA ’77, MD ’90, aboard the Oceanic Discoverer to visit the islands of Papua New Guinea at a time of year when we will have these waters to ourselves.
*The itinerary has been slightly altered from the brochure. We have added the Trobriand Islands near the end of the cruise and slightly decreased the time in the Sepik River.
Fly by charter from Cairns, Australia, to Rabaul. Cruise to Kimbe Bay, one of the world’s richest coral reef systems; explore Crown Island, known for its turtle nesting grounds; and visit with local villagers and school officials as our ship travels 60 miles up the mighty Sepik River. Stop at the idyllic island of Tuam and explore the rarely visited Tufi Fjords and Dobu and Fergusson islands before cruising back through the China Strait to Cairns. Enjoy top-of-the-charts diving/snorkeling and bird watching throughout.
Microbiology and Immunology
Robert Siegel, '76, MA '77, MD '90, has appointments in Stanford's department of microbiology and immunology, Center for African Studies and program in human biology.
- Robert Siegel, Microbiology and Immunology
Robert Siegel, ’76, MA ’77, MD ’90, has appointments in Stanford’s department of microbiology and immunology, Center for African Studies and program in human biology. He is also in charge of preclinical infectious disease curriculum at the Stanford University School of Medicine. He is on the advisory boards of numerous international organizations, including Support for International Change, Teach AIDS, Free the Children and Ocean Medicine Foundation. A published nature photographer, he is an active docent at Stanford Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve and Año Nuevo State Park. Bob has traveled with Stanford students to six continents and has been the faculty leader for Stanford Travel/Study trips to Tanzania, Papua New Guinea and the Galápagos.
Bob Siegel was one of the highlights of the trip for us. He was always available, always interested and always interesting.
- Professor (Teaching), Microbiology & Immunology, Stanford University
- Affiliate, Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University
- PhD, molecular biology, University of Colorado
- Author, Amantadine in treatment of chronic hepatitis C virus infection?
- The Human Biology Master Advisor Award
- The Henry J. Kaiser Award for Excellence in Preclinical Teaching
- The Committee on Courses and Curriculum Commendation for Outstanding Teaching
- Tthe Human Biology Excellence in Faculty Advising Award
- The Human Biology Master Advisor Award
- BA, Psychology, 1976, Stanford University
- MA, Education, 1977, Stanford University
- PhD, Molecular Biology, 1984, University of Colorado at Boulder
- MD, Medicine, 1990, Standford University
Wednesday to Friday, March 14 to 16
DEPART U.S / CAIRNS, AUSTRALIA
Depart the U.S. and fly across the international date line en route to Australia. Arrive in Cairns on Friday and transfer to our hotel. Named after William Wellington Cairns, the city was established to serve miners heading for the Hodgkinson River goldfield; in the present day Cairns is a large exporter of sugar cane. This evening celebrate the start of our adventure at a welcome reception and dinner. NOVOTEL CAIRNS OASIS RESORT (3/16: L,D)
Saturday, March 17
CAIRNS / RABAUL, PAPUA NEW GUINEA /
EMBARK OCEANIC DISCOVER
Board our charter flight to Rabaul, and embark the Oceanic Discoverer. Enjoy time to relax, settle in and explore the ship as it cruises Simpson Harbor, set against a stunning backdrop of six towering volcanoes. Join the captain and crew for a reception as the sun sets spectacularly over the Coral Sea. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Sunday, March 18
Cruise through Kimbe Bay, one of the world’s richest and most diverse coral reef systems, and home to over 860 species of tropical fish and more than 400 varieties of coral. Experience genuine island friendliness and hospitality as the ship is welcomed in the Bay by a flotilla of outrigger canoes. This afternoon cruise the New Britain coastline by “Xplorer,” the ship’s specially designed aluminum excursion vessel. The “Xplorer” will be used for the majority of our excursions on this expedition. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Monday, March 19
Traveling aboard the “Xplorer,” spend the day investigating the seldom-visited Crown Island, a turtle nesting ground and home of the giant lizard. Also enjoy time to snorkel or swim in the beautiful clear waters of the Coral Sea. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Tuesday, March 20
SEPIK RIVER / MANAM ISLAND
This morning enter the mouth of the mighty Sepik River, one of the world’s great river systems. Cruise upriver 65 miles to the middle Sepik region. This primitive, densely populated region is home to some of the world’s most isolated people and is renowned for its unique artifacts. Visit the remote villages of Angoram, the oldest and largest Sepik stations, and Bien, where the local Sepik people rank among the greatest primitive artists on earth and are famed for their unique hand carvings. This evening anchor in the river and enjoy the sights and sounds while overhead hundreds of “flying foxes,” or fruit bats, stream through the sky. Enjoy another beautiful sunset as we leave the Sepik and pass Manam Island and its active volcano, which erupted in 2004, displacing 6,000 people, and continues to smolder to this day. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Wednesday, March 21
The historic town of Madang, often referred to as “the prettiest town in the Pacific,” sits on a peninsula surrounded by a number of picturesque islands and is famed for its diving. Enjoy a harbor exploration aboard “Xplorer” before traveling ashore for a guided bus tour of Madang and its surroundings; visit the village of Haya for a rain forest walk and cultural show put on by the locals. Return to Madang for a town tour with time to visit the markets and stroll around town before returning to Oceanic Discoverer. Alternatively spend the day snorkeling or diving in the waters surrounding Madang, which offer excellent visibility and many WWII wrecks to explore. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Thursday, March 22
ISLAND OF TUSAM
Tuam, located in the Siassi group of islands, offers a mix of both mainland and Bismark Archipelago cultures. The prized trinkets and decorations here include dog’s teeth, spondyllus shells and wonderful balsa wood and sago bark headdresses. Today travel ashore and spend time with the locals to learn about their traditional village lifestyles, which still operate on subsistence principles and do not rely on the outside world. There is also the opportunity to join a guided walk through the island’s rain forest, as well as time for snorkeling and diving along the reef that surrounds the island. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Friday, March 23
LABABIA / KAMIALI WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA
Travel ashore to the picturesque village of Lababia, gateway to one of the most important conservation areas in Papua New Guinea – the Kamiali Wildlife Management Area. Walk along the David Suzuki trail through the prehistoric rain forest. With luck we may see some of the prolific birdlife that resides here, including hornbills, parrots, palm cockatoos and the iconic Raggiana birds-of-paradise. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Saturday, March 24
Today enjoy a true Expedition highlight as we soak up the scenic beauty of the rarely visited Tufi Fjords. Similar to the fjords of Norway, the Tufi Fjords feature 25 individual canyons with sheer basalt cliffs and offer a wealth of sightseeing opportunities. Take in the spectacular views as we cruise close to the towering cliffs before boarding “Xplorer” to travel ashore to meet the friendly locals. End the day exploring the region’s numerous white sandy beaches or take a leisurely swim and snorkel among spectacular fringing reefs. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Sunday, March 25
DOBU AND FERGUSSON ISLANDS
This morning our ship is greeted by a flotilla of canoes as it approaches the Dobu anchorage. Meet with local primary school children who welcome our group with a traditional dance performance. This afternoon, join an expedition to the Dei Dei Hot Springs where the landowner shares with us the mythical and spiritual tales of these hot-water-and-mud springs. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Monday, March 26
TROBRIANDS AND KITAVA ISLANDS
Historically knows as the 'Island of Love' the Trobriands offer a glimpse of traditional culture largerly unspoilt by outside influence. Witness traditional Trobriand dances. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Tuesday, March 27
Relax this morning as we cruise through Milne Bay, start of the Pacific Ocean and where tiny atolls, coral reefs, volcanic islands, swaying palms and white beaches dot the seascape. Disembark our ship in Alotau and tour this hillside town, which played a pivotal role in the WWII Battle of Milne Bay. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Wednesday, March 28
Enjoy a leisurely day at sea and relax in the comfort of our ship. This evening enjoy a farewell reception and dinner aboard our ship, celebrating our thrilling adventure. OCEANIC DISCOVERER (B,L,D)
Thursday, March 29
CAIRNS, AUSTRALIA / DISEMBARK
Arrive in Cairns at midday and disembark Oceanic Discoverer. Enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure and dine independently this evening. NOVOTEL CAIRNS OASIS RESORT (B,L)
Friday, March 30
CAIRNS / U.S
Depart Cairns this afternoon on flights back to the U.S. (B)
WHAT TO EXPECT
We consider this to be a moderately strenuous program that is at times physically demanding and busy. Daily programs involve one to two miles of walking, often on uneven terrain such as unpaved roads and loose sand. There will also be several days of snorkeling and/or swimming. While no prior snorkeling experience is necessary, all participants should be comfortable swimming unassisted in open water. Participants must be physically fit and in active good health. Travel to this part of world does require sensitivity to local cultures and customs and one should be prepared to witness local ceremonies. We welcome travelers over the age of 15 on this program.
Limited to 36 Stanford participants. We have secured block space on the Oceanic Discoverer.
|Main Deck||195 sq. ft.||$13,995
|Promenade Deck||175 sq. ft.||$14,495
|Bridge Deck||195 sq. ft.||$14,995|
*Association nonmembers add $200 per person.
**Single accommodations are limited at these rates.
ABOUT THE OCEANIC DISCOVERER
The recently built Oceanic Discoverer comprises 36 spacious, modern staterooms, offering a choice of twin or queen beds. All staterooms have an ocean view, en suite facilities, settee, large wardrobe, desk, luggage storage and individual air-conditioning control; staterooms are serviced daily. Spacious and finely appointed public areas include a reference library, lecture lounge, boutique, dive shop, large sun deck, spa pool and two bars. The restaurant offers buffet-style breakfast and lunch service and a three-course table d’hote dinner service. Menus are “modern Australian,” with the chefs seeking out the freshest of local ingredients to prepare truly memorable dining experiences; all guests are accommodated at a single seating. The state-of-the-art Oceanic Discoverer is equipped with the latest technology, active stabilizers and the “Xplorer,” its specially designed aluminium expedition vessel used for the majority of our excursions.
- 2 nights of deluxe hotel accommodations
- 12-night cruise aboard the Oceanic Discoverer
- 14 breakfasts, 14 lunches and 13 dinners
- Welcome and farewell receptions
- Local beer and house wine with lunches and dinners
- Bottled water on excursions
- Gratuities to porters, guides, drivers and ship crew for all group activities
- All tours and shore excursions as described in the itinerary
- Use of snorkeling equipment onboard the ship, including masks, snorkels and fins One-way charter flight from Cairns, Australia, to Rabaul, Papua New Guinea
- Transfers and baggage handling on program arrival and departure days
- Port fees and embarkation taxes
- Papua New Guinea visa fees
- Minimal medical, accident and evacuation insurance
- Educational program with lecture series and pre-departure materials, including recommended reading list, a selected book, map and travel information
- Services of our professional tour manager to assist you throughout the program
- International and U.S. domestic airfare
- Passport fees
- Immunization costs
- Meals and beverages other than those specified as included
- Independent and private transfers
- Trip-cancellation/interruption and baggage insurance
- Excess-baggage charges
- Personal items such as email, telephone and fax calls, laundry and gratuities for nongroup services
International and U.S. domestic airfare is not included in the program cost. Round-trip, economy-class airfare on Qantas Airlines from San Francisco to Cairns, Australia, is approximately $2,500 as of May 2011 and is subject to change without notice.
In the uncertain, often volatile oil market of late, it is difficult to predict fuel costs over the long term and, more specifically, at the time of operation of this voyage. Our prices are based upon the prevailing fuel rates at the time of brochure printing. While we will do everything possible to maintain our prices, if the fuel rates increase significantly, it may be necessary to institute a fuel surcharge.
All necessary snorkeling equipment is provided on the Oceanic Discoverer. However, past travelers have recommended bringing one’s own mask and snorkel to ensure the most comfortable fit. Information on optional SCUBA diving excursions offered by the cruise line will be provided to confirmed participants.
Terms and Conditions
We encourage membership in the Alumni Association as the program cost for nonmembers is $200 more than the members' price. Parents and their children under 21 may travel on one membership. For more information or to purchase a membership, visit www.stanfordalumni.org/membership or call (650) 725-0692.
Deposits, Payments and Cancellations
A $1,000 deposit is required to hold space. Deposits and any payments are fully refundable, less a $500-per-person cancellation fee, until 120 days prior to departure. After that date, refunds can be made only if the program is sold out and your place(s) can be resold, in which case a $1,000-per-person cancellation fee will apply.
Stanford Travel/Study provides all travelers who are U.S. or Canadian citizens with minimal medical, accident and evacuation coverage under our group-travel insurance policy. We strongly recommend that you subscribe to optional baggage and trip-cancellation insurance. A brochure offering such insurance will be mailed with your confirmation about one week after we receive your deposit. The product offered in this brochure includes special benefits if you postmark your insurance payment within a specified window: 15 days of the date listed on the confirmation letter for the Waiver of Pre-Existing Conditions and coverage for Financial Insolvency; 21 days for the Cancel for Any Reason benefit.
The Stanford Alumni Association, Stanford University and our operators act only as agents for the passenger with respect to transportation and ship arrangements and exercise every care possible in doing so. However, we can assume no liability for injury, damage, loss, accident, delay or irregularity in connection with the service of any automobile, motorcoach, launch or any other conveyance used in carrying out this program or for the acts or defaults of any company or person engaged in conveying the passenger or in carrying out the arrangements of the program. We cannot accept any responsibility for losses or additional expenses due to delay or changes in air or other services, sickness, weather, strike, war, quarantine, force majeure or other causes beyond our control. All such losses or expenses will have to be borne by the passenger as tour rates provide arrangements only for the time stated. We reserve the right to make such alterations to this published itinerary as may be deemed necessary. The right is reserved to cancel any program prior to departure in which case the entire payment will be refunded without further obligation on our part. The right is also reserved to decline to accept or retain any person as a member of the program. No refund will be made for an unused portion of any tour unless arrangements are made in sufficient time to avoid penalties. Baggage is carried at the owner's risk entirely. It is understood that the ship's ticket, when issued, shall constitute the sole contract between the passenger and the cruise company. The airlines concerned are not to be held responsible for any act, omission or event during the time passengers are not on board their plane or conveyance. Neither the Alumni Association, Stanford University nor our operators accept liability for any carrier's cancellation penalty incurred by the purchase of a nonrefundable ticket in connection with the tour. Program price is based on rates in effect at the time the brochure is printed and is subject to change without notice to reflect fluctuations in exchange rates, tariffs or fuel charges. As a condition of participation, all confirmed participants are required to sign a Release of Liability.
California Seller of Travel Program Registration #2048 523-50