WHY: In August 1768 Captain James Cook set sail on a voyage into the largely unmapped southern Pacific Ocean – a part of the world that, 250 years later, will be celebrated through a brand new exhibition by the Royal Academy of Arts that debuts in September 2018. The scientific expedition, commissioned to seek evidence of the fabled ‘Terra Australis Incognita’, travelled through the scattered archipelagos of Polynesia, Melanesia and Micronesia before spending six months charting the New Zealand coast and becoming the first Europeans to reach Australia’s east coast. James Cook had departed carrying 18 months of provisions; in the end, the voyage lasted nearly three years.
BOOK IT: Sail with World Expeditions into a world of idyllic islands and isolated villages that few have experienced on Secrets of Melanesia (12 days); departs 18 October, from US5,945 (approx. £4,530) per person
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