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It is a common belief that Captain James Cook was the first European to discover the continent of Australia in 1770. However the Dutch explorer Willem Janszoon, sailing the Duyfken in 1606, first sighted, landed and met indigenous tribal peoples at this remote area in the Gulf of Carpentaria. They were on an exploration of Papua New Guinea and sailed south through the Arafura Sea, without seeing the Torres Strait, into the Gulf of Carpentaria. On 26 February 1606, he made landfall at the Pennefather River in what is known to be the first recorded European landfall on the Australian continent. Janszoon proceeded to chart some 320 km of the coastline, which he thought was a southerly extension of New Guinea.

Whilst visiting this area of the Western Cape, guests will learn of this rich history and have the chance to visit and explore ashore this remote region including a visit to Cullen Point and further south a stop at Cape Keerweer.

Image Credit: Courtesy of the Duyfken 1606 Replica Foundation

Our Story

Australia’s Pioneering Cruise Line
For over 30 years Coral Expeditions has had one purpose – taking small groups of like-minded explorers to the most remote parts of the world, with expert guidance and warm Australian hospitality. Coral Expeditions was founded by a fisherman with a passion for the sea. Then named Coral Princess Cruises, the small North Queensland based company explored the Great Barrier Reef and pioneered small ship expedition cruising to the Kimberley and Papua New Guinea. Today, Coral Expeditions has grown to include voyages to Tasmania, Islands of the South Pacific, New Zealand, and the Indonesian Archipelago. Our Australian crew provide warm hospitality and personal service on board. Shore-rich itineraries in remote locations allow our guests to be immersed in local cultures, get close to wildlife, and enjoy adventurous land and sea activities in safety. We invite you to celebrate 35 years of exploration with us.

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