Globe Guide

The ultimate travel guide for visiting Nouméa, New Caledonia

noumea travel guide book

The sun-soaked, cosmopolitan city of Nouméa, New Caledonia is like a little slice of France in the South Pacific, complete with trendy shops, wine bars and oh-so-many beaches.

New Caledonia is home to the world’s largest lagoon, idyllic islands and even overwater bungalows , making it a popular getaway from nearby Australia and New Zealand. Chances are you’ll also come across some vacationers from as far away as Europe–this is a French territory, after all.

noumea travel guide book

Its capital Noumea ( noo-me-ah ) is home to half of the independent nation’s 240,000 person population, who enjoy a high standard of living, beautiful clean streets, a lively waterfront promenade and great weather year round.

People are very friendly here, and make the most of their spectacular surroundings with early morning runs, sporty swims in the lagoon, boating and kiting to take advantage of the consistent trade winds.

noumea travel guide book

Nouméa is a wonderful base to spend at least a few days before heading off to explore more of the country, or using it as a base for day tripping. From where to find the best beaches to tips for getting around, here’s everything you need to know about visiting Noumea, New Caledonia.

DoubleTree by Hilton Noumea Ilot Maitre Resort

How to get to Noumea, New Caledonia

The main ways to get to New Caledonia are by boat or plane–this is an island territory, after all.

Many visitors arrive by cruise ship, and there are also direct flights into La Tontouta International Airport (NOU) from Australia , New Zealand, Tahiti , Fiji and Vanuatu that only take two to three hours. However, you should avoid Air Vanuatu at all costs as they’re notorious for frequent flight cancellations and refusing to accommodate or refund passengers accordingly.

Aircalin is the national airline and is absolutely fantastic to fly with thanks to the lovely staff and updated, spacious planes. If you’re already planning to visit Fiji or New Zealand, New Caledonia is a lovely, easy add-on.

noumea travel guide book

The country is best for longer term, independent travellers: while many tourists visit Noumea for a day during a cruise, to properly explore the country you’ll need at least 7-10 days.

My recommendation would be to spend a couple days in the capital, rent a car and road trip around the mainland, then fly over to one of the outlying islands like Isle of Pines or Ouvea to see more of the best things to do in New Caledonia.

DoubleTree by Hilton Noumea Ilot Maitre Resort

Is Noumea safe?

Absolutely! The city is extremely clean, safe and developed, pedestrian crossings are well-marked, the people are friendly and there’s a very low crime rate. I travelled solo (and pregnant!) here for a few days and felt completely comfortable the entire time.

noumea travel guide book

Best things to do in Noumea, New Caledonia

The actual city centre in Nouméa is mostly made up of administrative buildings, which is why most visitors stay along the waterfront areas and spend their time there instead. 

Fortunately, most of the main attractions are found here so it’s quite easy to see the top activities in Nouméa in just a day or two. 

Galerie La Promenade

The La Promenade complex is at the base of the Hilton hotel on Promenade Roger Laroque, right across from Anse Vata Bay in the main tourist area. This is where you’ll find all the best boutiques selling colourful beach wear, jewellery, cosmetics and souvenirs, along with a handful of restaurants and cafes. 

noumea travel guide book

Aquarium of the Lagoons

Those visiting Noumea with kids will want to drop into the aquarium, which houses 33 tanks and exhibits about the coral reef, eels, clownfish and other marine life found in New Caledonia’s UNESCO World Heritage Site lagoon.

There’s also a large turtle tank, and a healthcare centre for rehabilitating injured marine life. Book this tour with GetYourGuide or with Viator , which includes admission as well as a hop on/hop off bus tour ticket that visits seven other spots around Nouméa.

noumea travel guide book

While the highlights of Noumea are walkable, there are a few other landmarks a little ways out best seen on an organized tour. 

Book this half day excursion to check out the Tjibaou Cultural Center which highlights Indegenous art and culture, the Church of the Immaculate Conception, and the Ouen Toro lookout for panoramic views of the New Caledonia lagoon, Mont Dore, Anse Vata bay, Promenade Pierre Vernier and the surrounding dry forest.

Noumea City Market

Experience the New Caledonian flavours at the lively Noumea City Market, located beside the Port Moselle marina.

Stalls with souvenirs and clothing lead up to the entrance where there are five small halls, and a great place to grab a snack or some local produce.

noumea travel guide book

Duck Island and Ilot Maitre

Looking for a beach break? Head over to Duck Island or Ilot Maitre, which are just a few minutes’ boat ride from the harbour but can feel a world away.

noumea travel guide book

Both are popular with kiters thanks to the consistent winds, and have sandy white beaches and great snorkelling. To get to Duck Island you can hop on one of the boats that departs across the street from the aquarium, while Ilot Maitre is a bit more exclusive and accessed only by guests staying at the DoubleTree resort or those who have booked a day pass (which can be done at a ticket office found along the promenade).

For about $70 per person, the ticket includes boat transfers from Noumea’s main harbour, lunch and a designated seating area. There’s also a company that rents out jet skis, paddle boards, kayaks and offers boat tours. 

noumea travel guide book

Sunset bars

Noumea is famous for its spectacular sunsets, and every night people gather along the promenade or grab a seat at one of the restaurants overlooking the water to soak up the scene.

Some of the best bars in Noumea for watching the sunset are Bodega, MV Lounge Nouméa or Le Roof which juts right out into the water.

noumea travel guide book

Best Noumea beaches

Every beach in Noumea is open to the public, and there are three main bays in the tourist area along Promenade Roger Laroque:

Anse Vata Bay

This beach is in the heart of the action across from the restaurants and shops in the La Promenade complex, and is a popular place to watch the sunset.

noumea travel guide book

Keep in mind that when it’s this windy, the beach isn’t ideal for lounging around and suntanning so it’s better to head to one of the more sheltered bays. Windsports gear and paddleboards can be rented by outfitters here, located near the aquarium.

On the weekends you’ll likely see beach volleyball games, and when the wind picks up hundreds of kiteboarders and wingfoilers head out onto the water as far out as Duck Island and Ilot Maitre.

Baie des Citrons

Lemon Bay is more of a local favourite, especially for those looking to get in a morning swim. A 750 metre long barrier of nets have been put up to keep the sharks out (yup, we’re talking about the South Pacific, folks!), which also makes this a wonderful spot for snorkeling right in the city and there are often lifeguards on duty.

It takes about 20 minutes to walk here from La Promenade, and there are more shops and restaurants across the street.

Baie des Citrons

Chateau Royal and Le Meridien Beaches

Named after the resorts situated along the waterfront, this golden stretch of sand is ideal for those looking to relax and soak up the sun. There’s a long dock that kids love to jump off of, you’ll often find families making sandcastles, and there’s also a kiting area near the point and a kids park just up the hill nearby.

noumea travel guide book

Some parts can be a bit rocky, so water shoes are a good idea if you’re planning to take a stroll.

noumea travel guide book

Organized tours in Nouméa

There aren’t many day trip options through Viator or GetYourGuide since tour operators here are small businesses and only operate on certain days or specifically for cruise ship passengers. Pre-planning is key, and in this case it’s definitely helpful to rent a car to do some day trips.

If dates align, this excursion out to the Amédée Lighthouse is one of the top-rated tours in Noumea. It starts with a boat tour over to the island, then guests get to enjoy a glass-bottomed boat tour, head up the famous lighthouse, enjoy welcome drinks and lunch buffet, lounge on the beach, then finish off the day with a traditional dance performance.

On select days there’s also a tourist train  and hop on/off bus to see the city sights, and a half-day excursion out to Signal Island to swim in the New Caledonia lagoon which is frequented by turtles where you can see colourful coral and reef fish.

A turtle in the New Caledonia lagoon

What to do in Noumea from a cruise ship

The majority of visitors arrive in Noumea via a cruise ship from places like Australia or New Zealand, and only get to visit for the day. The whole vibe of the city changes when the mega ships are in port, as the population suddenly swells to thousands of people and there are a lot more activities happening and shops open.

The good news for cruisers is that most of the Noumea activities and tours are set up specifically for boat passengers (which makes it tricky for independent travellers as tours are only offered on select days, and not usually through major booking sites).

Your boat will likely have plenty of tours to pick from, which use the double-decker buses and tourist trains to shuttle people around.

If you just want to get an overview of the city, save your money and do a self-guided tour along the main waterfront instead. It’s flat, very walkable and most of the main attractions and beaches are here.

noumea travel guide book

Best places to stay in Nouméa

It’s best to base yourself along the Anse Vata Bay area, which has the best variety of shopping, cafes and restaurants all within walking distance.

Hôtel Hilton Noumea La Promenade Residences: This is an absolutely fantastic option for accommodation in Noumea, especially for families or those doing a longer-term stay. Every room has a kitchen, laundry and gorgeous ocean views, and range in size from studios to three bedroom apartments with huge balconies.

Hôtel Hilton Noumea La Promenade Residences

There’s also a gym, restaurant, an outdoor pool and free parking, and the Hilton has the absolute best location in Noumea with Anse Vata Beach and the La Promenade complex literally out the back door. Check prices and reserve through Expedia or on Booking.com

Hôtel Hilton Noumea La Promenade Residences

DoubleTree by Hilton Noumea Ilot Maitre Resort: Ever wanted to stay in an overwater bungalow? This is your chance!

This luxe resort is located on Ilot Maître, a protected reserve and small tropical islet just a 10-15 minute boat ride from Noumea’s marina.

READ MORE: Where to find overwater bungalows in New Caledonia—yes, they exist!

Overwater bungalows in New Caledonia at by Hilton Noumea Ilot Maitre Resort

There are about two dozen overwater bungalows which sleep up to four people, as well as garden bungalows surrounded by foliage for privacy, beach bungalows situated along the waterfront, and a two bedroom beach villa which is great for groups and families as it sleeps up to six people and the adjoining villa can also be booked for even more space.

Guests can enjoy the four bars and restaurants, pool, spa, beach volleyball and fitness centre, and snorkel gear rentals are included for resort guests to swim with the giant turtles often seen in the lagoon. Check prices and reserve through Expedia or on Booking.com

The swimming pool at DoubleTree by Hilton Noumea Ilot Maitre Resort

Le Méridien Noumea Resort & Spa: Another popular pick for hotels in Noumea, Le Méridien is a higher-end option which is as close to the ‘resort vibe’ as you get right in town. It’s perched on the tip of the island near a popular kiteboarding spot at the end of Promenade Roger Laroque, about a 10-15 minute walk from Anse Vata Beach.

The beachfront property boasts modern, spacious rooms, multiple bars and restaurants, a happening pool area, gym and spa. Check prices and reserve through Expedia or on Booking.com

noumea travel guide book

Getting around in Nouméa, New Caledonia

A great thing about Noumea travel is you don’t need a car to see the highlights of the city since most are within easy walking distance of the Anse Vata Bay area.

That said, there are public buses that go along the waterfront, which is a good option if you’re loaded down with beach gear and want to get to one of the other bays or marina.

Promenade Roger Laroque

Unless you manage to book an island tour, a car is required for day tripping outside the city, and there are car rentals available for pickup at the airport or in town: I personally use and recommend booking with Discover Cars which shows all the different options.

While it’s tempting to pick the car up at the airport when you arrive, it may be worth rethinking that if your flight arrives late at night. That’s because it takes over an hour to drive into the city, and the majority of the road is narrow, winding and not well lit.

A better idea is to book an airport transfer with Arc en Ciel which is significantly cheaper than a taxi, unless you’re a larger group in which case a private van might make more sense.

It’s important to note that if you’re taking a domestic flight to one of the surrounding islands, it will likely leave out of Magenta Airport which is much more convenient and located only about 10 minutes from the city centre in Noumea, New Caledonia.

noumea travel guide book

Globe Guide explored Noumea as a guest of Hilton resorts. As always, hosts have no editorial influence on articles.

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The Ultimate Guide to Travelling in Noumea, New Caledonia

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Is New Caledonia worth visiting? Short answer: Yes! Sure, this French-Melanesian hybrid might not be as popular as some of its South Pacific counterparts, but that’s all a part of its understated charm. It’s the perfect place to visit for those who want tropical island getaway with a little Parisian panache.

New Caledonia, or ‘the Pebble’ as it’s known in French, is one of our closest South Pacific neighbours. It’s a short and happy 3-hour haul from Sydney which means you can forget about boredom, complicated transfers and the dreaded jetlag.

But accessibility is only one of its many drawcards. New Caledonia has established itself as the haute cuisine hub of the South Pacific. French-Melanesian fusion food can be tasted across the island and caters to all kinds of crowds from the cheap and cheerful to those living a champagne lifestyle.

Fishing in New Caledonia

New Caledonia also boasts unprecedented natural beauty, with immaculate beaches, rugged volcanic cliffs, thick tropical rainforests and stunning untouched wilderness. It is home to the world’s largest lagoon and the second largest barrier reef. It’s a haven where you can escape from the hustle and bustle and reconnect with nature.

With a buzzing social scene, you’re never short on things to do New Caledonia. The events calendar is continuously chock-a-block with activities to keep you entertained.

So, when is the best time to visit New Caledonia?

Beaches in Noumea, New Caledonia

Really, there’s no ‘bad time’ to visit New Caledonia, its semi-tropical climate ensures sunshine and warm weather is felt all year round. In saying that, there are two distinct ‘hot’ and ‘cool’ seasons which have slight nuances.

The hot season runs from December through to March. It’s warm, sticky and during this time you can expect temperatures to hover around 32 – 35°C. It’s also tropical cyclone season, rain showers and thunderstorms are frequent. But even between that thick humidity and rampant rain, the sun continues to shine and you can be assured of have a good time.

The cool season runs from June to late August or September. Minimal rainfall is experienced and the temperatures are pleasant, usually around a balmy 24°C. If you’re planning an active holiday, these cooler months are ideal as you can explore the island without worrying about rain, heat or humidity.

Shopping in Noumea New Caledonia

There are two intermediate seasons, April – May and October – November. These periods are popular as they have mild temperatures, low rainfall and reduced humidity.

September to mid-November is arguably the best time to travel to New Caledonia, you’re guaranteed good weather and crowds are also smaller at this time of year. Also, keep in mind that everything will be a little bit more expensive – because everyone wants to have a good time in paradise!

What are the must-do activities?

noumea travel guide book

When working out where to go in New Caledonia, it’s all about your personal taste. There’s something for everyone, and then a little bit more.

For the foodies

The best fresh produce from the South Pacific mixed with decadent French cuisine, you really do get the best of both worlds in New Caledonia. Whether it’s heading to a local boulangerie (bakery) and indulging in a freshly baked chocolate croissant or dropping some coin on luxury haute cuisine, you won’t be disappointed.

We recommend heading to Noumea, the capital of New Caledonia, to kick-off your culinary journey. Here, you can take a tour with local guide Harold Mary, and sample the finest French treats. You’ll stop at Noumea’s largest French wine shop,  Le Pavilion des Vins , as well as a specialty cheese (fromage) and chocolate stores.

For a more authentic experience, head to the lively  Port Moselle Markets . Grab a delectable French-style pastry, peruse the fresh flowers and produce, and taste all that New Caledonia has to offer.

If you’re after something simple, head to the biggest supermarket  Geant  in Noumea. It has an amazing deli section with gooey French cheese, cured meats and pates – perfect for stoking up for a picnic at one of New Caledonia’s ‘grammable beaches.

For the culture buffs

Tourists at Noumea Museum

Head to Noumea’s  T’jiabou Cultural Centre  to learn about New Caledonia’s indigenous population: the Kanak people. This architectural masterpiece was designed by renowned Italian architect Renxo Piano. The centre is comprised of 10 wooden structures which soar above the treetops. Here, you can view traditional Kanak works of art and tribal relics.

Pro Traveller Tip:  It’s worth trying the traditional Kanak-style lunch,  Bougna , available at many restaurants across Noumea.

But to get a true insight into Melanesian culture, try a  Kanak homestay . These warm people will embrace you as one of their own and share their ancient traditions. You’ll partake in fishing, bird watching and traditional storytelling, it’s a magical experience you won’t forget.  

For the nature enthusiasts

There’s plenty of opportunity to burn off all that calorie-heavy French food. New Caledonia has an array of outdoor activities which capitalise on its diverse landscape and showcase its natural beauty.

The  Le Parc Naturel de la Mer de Corail  or ‘the Natural Park of the Coral Sea’ is a must-see. It covers more than 1.3 million square kilometres, making it twice the size of Texas and three times the size of Germany. Thankfully, the territory is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site which means its underwater life is protected, incredibly diverse and truly a wonder to see. It has crystal-clear waters where you can snorkel, dive, windsurf, kayak, stand-up paddleboard or jet ski – basically whatever takes your fancy!

If you’re a hiker, head south into nickel territory where Francois, the Bear Grylls of New Caledonia, will guide you across the red soil, rugged peaks and shimmering waters. It’s a great way to get outside and see the real and unrefined New Caledonia.

Or, for something a little different, take a horseback ride through the unscathed rolling hills and valleys of the beautiful  Deva Domain with the Courie Ranch .

Horse riding in New Caledonia

Where is the best place to stay in New Caledonia?

New Caledonia has a multitude of luxurious resorts, each with their own unique features. We’ve listed a few of our favourites below, to help you with your planning.

Drone shot of the Le Meridien Noumea

Le Meridien, Noumea :  A little further out, a lot more luxury. Le Meridien Noumea Resort & Spa is located 10 minutes from the city centre, amid lush tropical gardens, it overlooks Anse Vata bay. It seamlessly combines French sophistication with Pacific Island charm. Head to the Deep Nature Spa to enjoy a unique day spa experience, it’s a little like heaven on earth.

The pool at Le Lagon, Noumea.

Le Lagon Hotel, Noumea : It’s been voted Noumea’s #1 Hotel on Trip Advisor and it’s easy to see why. It offers guests panoramic views of the breathtaking lagoon and it’s only a 100-metre walk to the beach, restaurants and shops. It’s located in the beating heart of Noumea, which makes it dead simple to get around. And once you’re tired of exploring, kick back and relax with a cocktail by the pool or treat yourself to some complimentary yoga.

Hilton Noumea La Promenade :  The French Riviera of the South Pacific, this resort is idyllic to say the least. Steps away from Anse Vata beach, it boasts a fantastic range of leisure amenities, so fun and relaxation is covered. If you’re feeling adventurous, try the watersports on the beach, otherwise pull up a seat at the bayfront restaurant and enjoy the very best of local cuisine.

Ready to explore New Caledonia?

Well, did we pique your interest in New Caledonia and its many, many merits? Talk to our South Pacific Specialists for more ideas – they’re just a phone call away at 1300 991 751 . Or, browse through some more regions in this pretty country. Did you know that our New Caledonia holiday deals are bundled with discounted airfares, transfers and seasonal bonuses such as 3+1 nights, free WiFi, massages, snorkelling trips, happy hours… and a lot more, but you’ve got to check them out for yourself! 

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noumea travel guide book

Noumea travel guide

Noumea tourism | noumea guide, you're going to love noumea.

With 93.060 inhabitants, Noumea is the most populous city in New Caledonia. It is the most popular tourist destination in the country. We recommend you stay at least 3 days in order to fully appreciate everything Noumea has to offer.

noumea travel guide book

Activities & attractions in Noumea

noumea travel guide book

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noumea travel guide book

When to visit Noumea

How to get to noumea.

Noumea is served by 2 airports: Noumea Magenta (GEA) and Noumea Tontouta (NOU). The closest to downtown Noumea is Noumea Magenta, which is located 3 km from the city center. Further away is Noumea Tontouta, 38 km from the center of Noumea.

Airports near Noumea

Airlines serving noumea, where to stay in noumea.

Average rates range from around $116 per night for a double room in a 3-star hotel to $295 and up for a 5-star experience.

Where to stay in popular areas of Noumea

Most booked hotels in noumea, renting a car in noumea.

The most frequently booked car type in Noumea is Compact (Class Compact Car or similar). If you’re looking to save money, though, keep in mind that Economy rental cars (Class Economy Car or similar) are, on average, 39% cheaper than other rental car types in the city.

Beach of Anse Vata in Noumea

  • End of swimming ban on Nouméa beaches

Since Friday the 08 December 2023 , swimming and water sports activities have once again been permitted on all beaches including Anse-Vata beach, Château Royal and Le Méridien beaches, Ilot Maître “Master Island” and all other islets.

Protected and Supervised

Two protected and supervised areas have been set up:

  • Baie des Citrons (Lemon Bay) benefits from a 750-metre-long barrier on a 10-hectare protected stretch of water, under the daily supervision of lifeguards from 8.45am to 5pm (4pm in the cool season).
  • Château Royal and Le Méridien beaches now also include a temporary supervised swimming area, which will be removed once a long shark net barrier has been installed by the end of March 2024.

Swimming is allowed outside the protected areas at one’s discretion

As a reminder, following shark attacks in early 2023, Nouméa town hall issued a temporary ban on “all swimming in the 300 m coastal strip” in the capital, while policies were put in place to regulate the most dangerous species and organise the gradual installation of anti-shark protection nets.

Pic Malaoui hike

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  • 1 Understand
  • 2.1 By plane
  • 2.4 By boat
  • 3 Get around
  • 9.2 Mid-range
  • 9.3 Splurge

noumea travel guide book

Nouméa is the largest city in and capital of New Caledonia , lying on the main island of Grande Terre . One of the most westernised cities in the Pacific Islands, it features beautiful beaches and colonial mansions and is not yet a heavily touristed destination.

Where metropolitan French will hear a bad French accent, wince and say that they speak English, the Francophones of New Caledonia are either less willing or less able to accommodate Anglophones. It is probably a matter of capability, since they are marvellously willing to persevere in determining what it is that a foreigner needs. Without tourist-level French, you may find yourself lost — but it's a lovely place to be lost! The French spoken by Caledonians is much harder to understand than the French of people in Paris: on a par with Quebec French (or think of the challenge offered by broad Scots or Yorkshire for a Londoner). But English rates in New Caledonia are becoming higher, with more of the younger generations learning English.

Map

Due to the long distance between the airport and the city centre, connecting transport can be very expensive. The cheapest option by far is a public bus, run by Carsud . Ligne C runs 9-11 times a day each way Monday to Saturday, however only twice a day on Sundays. The journey time is about an hour 20 minutes costing 280 F one-way (as of 2018), departing to the city from just outside the airport terminal on the right, and to the airport from the Desmazures interchange near the bingo centre. A pre-booked shuttle service to your hotel will cost about 3000 F per person; there are a variety of options, but the largest company is Arc en Ciel ( ☏ +687 271980 ). A taxi could cost up to 10,000 F.

From La Tontouta , it's a half an hour drive via the RT1 east towards Noumea. From Le Mont-Dore , it's a 10 minute drive south west via the expressway.

Noumea is a popular port of call for people sailing around the Pacific, though most dare not sail during cyclone season.

The Little Train (Le Petit Train) is a motorised tour on normal roads, that runs several times a day. It is an area tour, but you can also hop off one train, and catch the following service. Check the timetable, though, because it may be cancelled or only offer two services on a given day.

The city is also serviced by several bus routes that costs 210 F if you buy your ticket on board ( as of June 2014 ), or 190 F if you buy them ahead of time. Others have recommended this only if you feel your French is up to scratch, as the bus drivers very rarely understand anything but French. However, it is sufficient to know that the bus goes to "Centre Ville", then hand over the money and state the number of tickets required (une personne, deux personnes, trois personnes, etc.). The big catch is working out where the buses start, as different lines leave from different places. The majority of buses go from near the ticket office in Place de la Marne, where Rue d'Austerlitz passes through the Place des Cocotiers. Other lines depart from a rough piece of ground near the corner of rue Clemenceau and rue de la Somme, within sight of the Municipal Markets and the cinema and a couple of blocks south of Place des Cocotiers. See the official map for more details.

You can buy a number of tickets in advance at the office on rue d'Austerlitz (it's more of a booth, actually) but you need to validate the appropriate number of tickets for the trip when you board the bus (that includes the ones you buy from the driver) by inserting them in a machine that will stamp them with a time and a date, but this is nowhere explained. There are rumours of ticket-selling machines in shops. There may be an all-day ticket. The city bus line is called Karuiabus .

The first trick is to recognise a bus stop when you see one. These are white-ish pillars, usually with a name on them, sometimes with a shelter from sun or rain, but usually with no indication of the lines that stop there.

Also available for tourists is a "Noumea Explorer" service that runs an hourly loop pass the major tourist sites (Museums, Parc Forestier and Zoo, Tjibaou and hotels) hourly. That for 1500 F a day (2010 price), is a great idea to be used to explore each of the sites for an hour before catching the bus onto the next location when it comes past again. The service takes a little over an hour, the stops are hard to locate at the start, and you need both a map that shows the stops, and also a leaflet from your hotel or a tourist office that gives the timetable.

Tanéo also run bus services and run within Greater Nouméa. More information on Tanéo can be found here .

Most of the tourist attractions in Noumea are closed on Mondays and open all other days, with the exception of Museum of New Caledonia, which is closed on Tuesdays. Each venue has its own entry costs, but in 2014 for 1700 F a "Pass' Nature and Culture" could still be purchased that provided admittance to the Tjibaou, New Caledonia, Noumea and Maritime History Museums, Zoo and Aquarium that could be used over 6 months.

Another good idea, is to grab the free English publication The New Caledonia Weekly and check in it for local events and ideas. The best map was the "New Caledonia Visitor map" found in many places. This is an A1 sheet that can be a challenge in high winds, but at least it shows you where the "Noumea Explorer" stops are.

  • -22.275693 166.443548 1 Museum of New Caledonia ( Musée de Nouvelle-Calédonie ), 43, Avenue du Maréchal Foch, Quartier Latin , ☏ +687 272342 , fax : +687 284143 , [email protected] . W-M 09:00-11:30, 12:15-16:30 . The former territorial museum displays a large variety of tribal art and cultural items, such as weapons, spears, traditional clothing, decorations and full-size boat and hut structures. The ground floor focusses on Kanak items from New Caledonia, while upstairs there is cultural heritage from across the region, including countries like Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea and Australia. Some English information available. 200 F adults, 50 F students/12-18 years/seniors, under-12s free . ( updated Jul 2015 )
  • -22.270567 166.441441 2 City of Nouméa Museum ( Musée de la Ville de Nouméa ), 39, rue Jean Jaurès, Centre-Ville ( Opposite Place des Cocotiers ), ☏ +687 262805 , fax : +687 276062 , [email protected] . M-F 09:00-17:00, Sa 09:00-13:00, 14:00-17:00 . The museum is in the city's first bank, constructed in 1874, a few years later which would become the town hall for nearly a century following the bank's failure. Documents the history of the city and the surrounding region, including the convict era, municipal projects under Governor Feuillet, the nickel trade, the city's role in World War II and since then. A lot of the info is in English, and a free audio guide is available to explain most of the exhibits. 200 F adults, 100 F students/seniors, 50 F 12-18 years, under-12s free . ( updated Jul 2015 )

noumea travel guide book

  • -22.256338 166.481685 3 Tjibaou Cultural Centre ( Centre Culturel Tjibaou ), Rue des Accords de Matignon , ☏ +687 41 45 45 . 09:00-17:00 (closed Mondays) . the iconic large modern wooden round houses, that you see on most postcards of New Caledonia, are located a little way out of Noumea (but accessible by buses--Noumea Explorer or Ligne 40 (   40   ) public bus) past the Magenta Domestic Airport. It houses a lot of contemporary Melanesian and other Oceanic cultures art work, as well as some traditional pieces. Also if you visit at the right time, there are regular performances of traditional dances and music here, as well as the resource libraries focusing on Oceanic cultures. There is a cafeteria manned by a character with severely limited skills of addition, so make sure you know what you should be paying. The shop has some exquisitely designed souvenirs which aren't cheap, but which are still worth it. Make sure you leave some time to walk around outside the building. The architect was Renzo Piano, and you need to look closely at the way he has captured the spirit of the Auracaria pines. The centre commemorates a leader of the Kanak independence movement, Jean-Marie Tjibaou, a former priest who significantly was a student in Paris in 1968. Tjibaou was murdered by another Kanak who regarded Tjibaou's signing of the Matignon Accords as a betrayal. 500 F . ( updated Sep 2021 )
  • Maritime History Museum on the Baie de la Moselle water front ( 11 avenue James Cook ), this little museum is packed with maritime artifacts, like a humongous rudder, light house lamp, and models of New Caledonian ships. It also regularly hosts temporary exhibits like one on the first convict ship to arrive in New Caledonia. 500 F per person (June 2014).
  • Aquarium des Lagons between Anse Vata and Baie des Citrons ( 61 Promenade Roger Laroque ), the Aquarium has a great collection of Nautilus, as well as lots of information about the local marine life of the island. 1000 F (as of June 2014). Tu-Su 10:00 to 17:00. Last admissions at 16:00.

New Caledonia is home of one of the largest lagoons in the world. So naturally water sports are very popular.

  • Wind surfing Anse Vata during the afternoons is very popular with Kite and Wind Surfers. There are a few hire companies on the beach that are very friendly and have a wide range of equipment.
  • Snorkeling it is highly suggested to snorkel while in Noumea. The water off Rocher a la Voile around and into Baie des Citrons has coral literally meters from the shoreline, making it very easy to see the coral and fish that inhabit there.

Baie des Citrons is also very protected from wind, making it even more enjoyable for the novice. But also if you are prepared to pay for a water taxi ride, Ile aux Canards just off Anse Vata (maybe half a kilometer away ) has a snorkeling track in a marine park that has even better coral to see. The visibility can be poor after rough weather, and the charges for almost everything are appallingly heavy (600 F for a chair, the same for an umbrella, and the service is surely the surliest found anywhere in Nouméa, aside from the Tjibaou cafeteria). You get there by water taxi from the lower level of the faré ("native hut") half-way along the Plage Loisirs or Anse Vata beach . The price in June 2014 was 1200 F for a return trip, which was good value.

Seeing sea snakes is not uncommon in Nouméan waters, but they are very unlikely to bite a snorkeler. Sharks are very rarely seen though. You can rent a mask, fins and snorkel for 600 F, so you may think it worthwhile taking your own.

  • Island hopping/visiting there are also many tourist operators who will take you to an island to sunbathe, swim and explore — like the Light House tours available from most tourist operators on Anse Vata, or via the hotels.
  • Scuba diving There are a few dive companies who offer dive courses, and day dives on the reef. Abyss Plongée have a couple of boats and are based in Marina Port du Sud, and offer a morning of 2 dives on the reef for around 10,000 F. A whole day including 2 dives, lunch, and transfer from/to Port Moselle is about 16,500 F.
  • Walking The climb up Ouen Toro Park at the South of Noumea (the hill near most of the big hotels) is a great way to spend a few hours. There are many paths through the hill that are signed (though sometimes poorly due to vandalism) and many places to stop, rest and take in the views. At the top of the 128-m summit is a military base (that can not be visited) and an old battery that has BBQ facilities.

The quickest way up from the area near Anse Vata is to walk along rue g. Laroque, but if you reach the pharmacy and the Hippodrome, you have gone too far. Go past the first couple of cross streets, then look for rue Paul Baumier on your right: there is a Gascon restaurant on one corner, and the Val Plaisance Charcuterie on the other. Walk up the street warily (the drivers are a bit wild) then pick up the track at the top end of the street. This leads up to the road that comes from somewhere past the Meridien hotel. The track is a bit of a scrabble, with a number of 5 cm stumps. Once you are on the road, you can either go west to look out over the sea or just look for the walking tracks that start immediately opposite. There is a painted map-sign there, so take some notes, especially of the distances, because these are repeated on the track signage.

The main thing is to be aware that there are many other tracks than the ones shown, and the red tracks (on the signboard map) are indeed "difficult". In the late afternoon, there are other walkers and runners so the place is safe enough. Take some water, and watch where you put your feet, as twisted ankles are always possible on the loose stones and rocks. Keep an eye on where you are going so that you can retrace your steps, because the internal signs are poor. The views, however, are superb.

Most of Nouméa is also very close together, and safe to walk day and night between most of the suburbs (anyway avoid the surroundings of the "place des cocotiers" at night, were many drunken people are roaming. Neighbourhoods of Montravel, Vallee du tir, and Riviere Salee can be also be unsafe place at night). By day, the walk from Anse Vata along to and around the Baie des Citrons is pleasant. Assume that coffee and tea along the way will leave you little change from 500 F (each).

  • Local markets just off rue Clemenceau, south of the CBD every morning of the week is local markets from approx 05:00 till 10:00, where cheap food, arts and crafts can be purchased. Expect to pay list price; bargaining is not common practice in New Caledonia.

Food is not cheap in New Caledonia, but you can do well shopping at the non-tourist shops. Learn to detect the boulangerie and patisserie for bread and pastries, the charcuterie for meat and pâté and so on, but don't pass by the slightly seedy-looking general stores, where you can probably get tinned pâté, packaged cheese (wedges of brie, for example) and more.

Plan your alcohol purchases carefully because many supermarkets will not sell you alcohol on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

  • Waterfront Market , Rue Georges Clemenceau . Open every morning, providing a good option for budget breakfasts. Croissants and Pain au Chocolat (180 F) and multitude of fresh fruit are available from various merchants. La Buvette du Marché, located inside the building adjacent to the main fruit market, prepares a variety of food including Croque Monsieur (toasted ham and cheese sandwich) and coffee.  

At night, locals who eat out seem to wait until vingt heures ( 20:00 ) before they eat, though most places are open from 18:30 .

  • L'Entrecote Au 360 ( 360 Restaurant ), ☏ +687 23 90 90 . A revolving restaurant on top of one of the Ramada towers. At one point, you are looking straight into the apartments of the other tower, but the food is truly superb, and the lunch views are great. Try the sirloin steak in secret sauce. ( updated Mar 2017 )

The main local beer is 'Number One', it is not a complex beer, but pleasant and refreshing. The other local beer is called "Manta".

There are many French wines to be had, but the New Zealand and Australian wines might travel better. The local tap water is perfectly safe to drink, but bottled water is easy to find if you are fearful.

For Australians, the idea of 'flat white' coffee is familiar. A short black is 'espresso', cappuccino comes heaped high with cream (not froth), and tea is served without milk. The hot chocolate is up to Belgian standards. Fruit juices are pricey but excellent.

  • -22.272078 166.445221 1 Noumea City Hostel ( L'Auberge de Jeunesse ), 51 Rue Pasteur Marcel Ariège ( from Place des Cocotiers, head inland, and up a huge set of steps, turn right and down a driveway adjacent to FOL ), ☏ +687 275879 , fax : +687 254817 , [email protected] . 05:30-11:45, 16:00-20:00 daily . Noumea's only youth hostel sits perched on the side of a hill behind the cathedral, with a magnificent view over Centre-Ville and the bay. A number of 4- and 6-bed dormitories with balconies, with some double rooms also available. Clean shared bathroom and kitchen facilities, baggage lockers and a recreational room with table tennis and films each night. Wi-Fi costs 200 F/hr, while there is also a reasonable fee for laundry services. 2000 F/dorm bed . ( updated Aug 2015 )
  • -22.29524 166.43891 2 Marina Beach Hotel ( Residence Marina Beach ), 4 Rue Auguste Page Baie Des Citrons , ☏ +687 28 76 33 , [email protected] . Basic accommodation, but a great location including cookie facilities.  

Le Surf (www.grands-hotels.nc) Le Parc

Ramada Plaza, rue Louis Blériot, Anse Vata

Royal Tera: Excellent accommodation on Anse Vata Bay - self-contained (kitchen incredible), short walk to bus to City. Close to restaurants.

  • Hilton Noumea La Promenade , 109 Promenade Roger Laroque , ☏ +687-2-44600 , fax : +687-2-44700 .  
  • Le Meridien Noumea Resort & Spa , Pointe Magni , ☏ +687 26 50 00 , fax : +687 26 50 03 , [email protected] .  
  • Explore the Grand South and visit Le Mont-Dore

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Travel to Nouméa

The largest French-speaking city in the Pacific, you’re sure to fall hopelessly in love with Nouméa. Bordered by the lagoon, plenty of outdoor activities and a properly laid-back lifestyle await you in the New Caledonian capital.

Scattered with islands and islets, the coast off Nouméa has a feel of the French Riviera about it. Visitors can enjoy strolling along the bays, watching the kitesurfers skim over the crystal-clear waters, and lunching in the waterfront restaurants. It’s a fabulous backdrop for sampling one of the mouth-watering menus on offer, where French flavours are often to be found running through Pacific- and Asian-inspired dishes. From mangrove crab gratin to dauphinoise sweet potatoes and cassava and poingo banana croquettes, you really will be spoilt for choice. New Caledonia has a clear identity, which islanders are keen to maintain. You’ll love the tranquillity of day-to-day life here, and there’s no better place to experience it than a stay with a local tribe. All along the eastern coast and on the islands, longstanding traditions are still alive and well, and the people are homely and generous. As soon as you leave the capital, the beauty of the vast sea and mountain landscapes will take your breath away. New Caledonia is home to an abundance of natural treasures, such as the great yellow-tinted plains where you’ll find the “broussards”: the farmers who have embraced the American cowboy way of life. On the other side of the island, the lush East Coast is home to some beautiful walks, along with unspoilt rivers and waterfalls for swimming. Plus, why not take some time out to explore the red earth and nature reserves of the Great South, which is home to many indigenous species. This diversity, coupled with the lagoon – a UNESCO World Heritage site – and the immaculate white shorelines of the surrounding islands mean you can roll several holiday experiences into one with a trip to New Caledonia!

During July and August, you can even spot whales from the shore! So…what are you waiting for?

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Blue River Provincial Park

The Blue River Provincial Park, close to nature in New Caledonia

Experience true cultural exchange

New Caledonia, a land of cultures that encourages sharing

Oro Bay, Isle of Pine, New Caledonia

The Isle of Pines: a carefully guarded natural treasure in the heart of the Pacific

noumea travel guide book

Kanua Tera: a getaway deep in southern New Caledonia

noumea travel guide book

The Shabadran Terraces: an unforgettable hike

Roche percée nouvelle-calédonie

Roche Percée: a symbol of the island

noumea travel guide book

Discover the Amédée Lighthouse, perched upon its white sandy island.

Practical information about nouméa.

There are a number of festivals, holidays and other events celebrated in Nouméa each year. The main ones are listed below.

JANUARY 1: NEW YEAR'S DAY (NATIONAL)

Every year, the traditional New Year fireworks display takes place over Sainte-Marie Bay in Nouméa, treating the capital city’s residents to twenty minutes of magic. This huge pyrotechnical event never fails to impress onlookers of all ages.

MAY 1: LABOUR DAY (NATIONAL)

On 1 May, it is customary to offer a sprig of lily-of-the-valley to friends and loved ones, so the streets fill with people selling them!

JUNE 21: MUSIC FESTIVAL (NATIONAL)

Artists take over public spaces for a jam-packed evening of shows and concerts. Enjoy moving and grooving to the beat of the music, right in the heart of Nouméa.

JULY 14: BASTILLE DAY (NATIONAL)

Nouméa celebrates Bastille Day with a parade of lanterns from Place Bir-Hakeim to Place des Cocotiers. The party continues at city hall, where a fireworks display is followed by the traditional community dance.

SEPTEMBER: NOUMéA CARNIVAL

Every year, the streets of Nouméa are flooded with brightly-coloured musical floats and dancers, including the famous Brazilian troupe Banda Momo. This popular festival is all about friendliness, and spectators are encouraged to come in fancy dress. The parade concludes with a spectacular fireworks display.

DECEMBER 25: CHRISTMAS (NATIONAL)

December is when “Fairytale Nouméa” comes to town, complete with a myriad of coloured lights. All sorts of family-friendly shows are staged in Place des Cocotiers every evening throughout the month. The magic of Christmas is also all around, with a Christmas tree and a postbox for letters to Santa set up in Place de la Marne.

DECEMBER 31: NEW YEAR'S EVE (NATIONAL)

On the night of 31 December, the traditional fireworks are fired over the bay of Sainte-Marie;

La Tontouta International Airport is located around 50 kilometres to the north of Nouméa.

  • 1 terminal : International airline terminal (Air France)

Getting from the airport to Noumea and back:

  • Access: via the RT1. Journey time approx. 45 minutes.
  • Parking: There are 570 car parking spaces outside the terminal building. The first 20 minutes are free, 200 XPF from 20 minutes to 1H, 400 XPF from 1H to 2H, 500 XPF from 2H to 3H, subsequent hours charged at 100 XPF). You’ll need to validate your ticket at the automatic pay stations in the hall (cash payment) or at the Information Point (card payment).
  • There are several car hire firms in the airport bus terminal, located 50m from the airport’s exit on the right-hand side. Most only open when a flight arrives or departs.
  • A number of private companies offer transfers at very similar rates. Allow for around 3,000 XPF per person. Think about reserving your transfer ahead of time, either by email or via the transport company’s website.
  • You can find all contact information on the La Tontouta website at www.aeroports.cci.nc/en/tontouta/shuttle-services .
  • Taxis may or may not be available to hire on the day, depending on whether they been booked for any transfers to the airport. We advise booking in advance.
  • You can find all contact information on the La Tontouta website at   www.aeroports.cci.nc/en/tontouta/taxis .
  • Services: shops, restaurants, free internet access (Wi-Fi), currency exchange services and ATMs, OPT counter (postal and telecommunications services).
  • Passenger information: +687 35 11 18
  • Flight times: +687 36 67 18
  • Website: www.aeroports.cci.nc/en/tontouta

Nouméa has an excellent public transport network, and much of the city can be reached on foot.

You’ll be able to spot taxis in Nouméa by their colour: green and white. If you want to make a complaint, you’ll need the licence number printed on the bodywork.

Taxis wait for customers in Nouméa’s main stations. These are in the city centre at Nouméa market, Anse Vata and Nouméa Magenta Airport. You should always take the taxi at the head of the queue. You can expect a journey from the city centre to Anse Vata to cost around 1,600 XPF.

The bus network is very extensive, particularly in Nouméa. With the L3 bus you can ride all along the bays from the Quai Jules Ferry (ferry terminal) to Anse Vata and Ouen Toro, with stops at the Maritime Museum and Place des Cocotiers. Line N4 travels from the city centre to the Forest Park . Single tickets can be bought on the bus or in one of the many sales outlets (300 XPF). For further information, visit the website www.taneo.nc .

The Raï intercity network ( www.rai.nc ) is a great way to explore New Caledonia at an extremely reasonable price. The comfortable, air-conditioned coaches stop at Grande Terre’s main towns and cities. You can either buy your ticket on board the coach or at the bus terminal in Nouméa.

Travelling by car is still the most practical way of exploring Grande Terre and New Caledonia's smaller islands. The road network is well-maintained, but you also have the option of hiring a 4x4. Although there are plenty of service stations about nowadays, finding one that's open on a Sunday or certain bank holidays outside of Nouméa may still be difficult.

By water taxi

Water taxis are New Caledonia's most exotic and glamourous form of transport. They're a great way of getting to the idyllic islets surrounding Grande Terre. There are several private carriers to choose from.

The high-speed Betico2 ferry serves the Isle of Pines, Maré and Lifou from Nouméa. Expect to spend around five hours on board to reach Lifou, four hours for Maré and two and a half for the Isle of Pines. You'll find timetables and prices at www.betico.nc

The quickest way to get to the islands is by plane. The local domestic airline, Air Calédonie ( www.air-caledonie.nc ), offers daily flights out of Nouméa Magenta Airport to the Isle of Pines, which is around a 30-minute flight, and some of the Loyalty Islands (Maré, Lifou, Ouvéa) around 40 minutes away.

Air Loyauté ( www.air-loyaute.nc ) offers regular flights between the Loyalty Islands.

NOUMéA TOURIST INFORMATION CENTRE

The Nouméa Tourist Information Centre has two different offices: one in the city centre and the other in Anse Vata. Practical information and useful advice (accommodation, food and drink, transport, celebrations and festivals, cultural events, etc.).

  • City centre address: Office du Tourisme 22 quai Jules Ferry, Gare Maritime, 98800 Nouméa
  • Anse Vata address: Office du Tourisme 113 Promenade Roger Laroque, Anse Vata, 98800 Nouméa
  • Telephone: +687 05 75 80 / +687 28 75 80
  • Website: www.newcaledonia.travel

The currency in Nouméa is the CFP franc (XPF).

In order to travel in the best conditions and for your health and safety, we invite you to check all information regarding preventive measures and best practices to be respected, available on the official website of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs: www.gouvernement.fr/info-coronavirus .

Your comfort, well-being and health are at the heart of Air France's concerns, and we want to help you prepare for your trip in the best way possible. Find out more about the measures taken to ensure safe travelling on our website: wwws.airfrance.fr/en/information/covid-19 .

See your doctor before you travel. It is also recommended to take out insurance covering medical expenses and repatriation before your trip. Papeete counts several hospitals and medical institutions, as well as quality medical practitioners and health specialists.

VACCINATION

You do not need any vaccinations to visit New Caledonia (this information is indicative only and may be subject to change).

For more information, contact Paris République ELSAN international vaccination centre:

  • Address:  38 quai de Jemmapes, 75010 Paris
  • Website:   https://www.elsan.care/fr/centre-de-vaccination-internationale-paris-republique
  • Telephone:  +33 (0)1 43 17 22 00
  • online ( click here )
  • by calling +33 (0)1 43 17 22 00

You can drink the tap water in Nouméa.

Before travelling, please ensure that you hold the required documents, by checking with the embassy and consulate of your destination and/or transit country (or countries) regarding formalities for entering the country and for your stay there.

For French citizens :

Overseas territories are not part of the Schengen area. You will need a passport valid for a period of at least 6 months after leaving New Caledonia.

For foreign nationals from other countries:

Entry requirements for the French Overseas Collectivity of New Caledonia are not the same as for mainland France. See the information on the French New Caledonian High Commission: www.nouvelle-caledonie.gouv.fr .

Travel advice

For a stress-free visit to Nouméa, take a look at your country’s Foreign Office or Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.

French New Caledonian High Commission

  • Address : 1 Avenue du Maréchal Foch, Nouméa
  • Telephone : +687 26 63 00

Foreign embassies and consulates in France

Contact information for the embassies and consulates of your country is accessible in the directory of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs: www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/en/country-files .

Here are some basic French phrases which you might find useful during your stay in Nouméa:

audio

Telephone code

building

Opening hours

electricity

Tipping People don’t tend to tip in New Caledonia, and the prices displayed always include taxes.

OTHER APPEALING DESTINATIONS

Athènes

Flight from 135€ *R/T

Barcelona

Flight from 106€ *R/T

Bordeaux

Flight from 111€ *R/T

*All amounts are in EUR. Taxes, surcharges and booking fees are included. Prices shown may vary depending on fare availability. The rate is guaranteed as soon as you obtain the reference of your reservation.

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Travel Guide: Noumea, New Caledonia

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I recently returned from an amazing holiday in New Caledonia. It’s only a 2.5 hour flight from Sydney and I was quite surprised by how few Aussies were there. Perhaps one of the reasons is that it can be quite expensive, however I have shared cheaper accommodation and eating options to suit all budgets.

le-roof-restaurant

We left a cold and rainy Sydney to be greeted by a warm and sunny Noumea. I’m sure I was infuriating on Instagram ! What New Caledonia lacked in cuisine (I found the food incredibly overpriced and of average standard) it made up for with pristine waters, untouched beaches and friendly locals.

hilton-breakfast

Buffet breakfast on the Hilton’s balcony

Where to stay

Anse Vata is located in the south of the big island (Grand Terre) and is home to the majority of Noumea’s luxury hotels and resorts. If you’re on a budget, head further up the coast along the western edge of Grand Terre to Baie de Citrons, where there are more budget-friendly accommodation options.

If you’re only staying in Noumea for one night before heading out to the islands, I recommend you stay in downtown Noumea. It’s not the nicest area, but it is closer to the boat port and airport.

Budget: Hotel Beaurivage  –  7 Promenade Roger Laroque,   Baie Des Citrons

If you’re on a tight budget, Hotel Beaurivage is a simple and clean 2 star hotel centrally located on the Baie De Citrons. This is the area to be in if you’re after a bit more nightlife too – there are a lot of beachfront bars and restaurants and a lot more young people compared to Anse Vata.

hilton-view

The view of the Hilton’s grounds and Anse Vata beach in the distance

Mid-Range: Hilton Noumea La Promenade Residences –  109 Promenade Roger Laroque, Anse Vata

I stayed at the Hilton for 7 nights and was very happy with my stay. My friend and I booked a 2 bedroom apartment and were upgraded to a 3 bedroom for free. It was amazing!

Apart from having a great central location in Anse Vata, the Hilton apartments are all self contained, meaning they come with fully equipped kitchens. As food is so expensive in New Caledonia, we saved a lot of money by going to the grocery store and buying supplies for homemade breakfasts. The Hilton buffet breakfast costs around AUD$40 every morning (!!) and to be honest it’s fairly average by international standards.

Luxury: Chateau Royal Beach Resort and Spa – 140 Promenade Roger Laroque, BP

This is regarded as the best resort in Noumea and was unfortunately booked out completely by a conference when we were there. It’s pretty pricey (around $380/night) but if you are after a luxurious holiday, this is your best option.

anse-vata-beach

A perfect beach day at Anse Vata

The rainy season in New Caledonia runs from January to March. We arrived early April and had near-perfect weather, however it rained the week before AND after. Talk about lucky!

The hottest period is from September to March whilst the cool season runs from April to August. I would say the best time to go is between September and December, when the weather is warm and the rains haven’t come yet.

baie-de-citrons2

Watch the sunset over Baie de Citrons beach

Unlike Anse Vata, Baie de Citrons faces west and is perfect for watching the sun set across the water. Go for a dusk swim or enjoy the sunset over a few cocktails at one of the bars lining the beach.

Snorkelling, swimming and diving

The pristine waters surrounding New Caledonia are perfect for exploring however you like – whether it be swimming, snorkelling or diving. I’ve never seen such an amazing array of tropical fish, coral and marine life so close to the coast. If you have your own snorkelling gear I highly suggest you bring it with you, as it’s quite expensive to hire (around AUD$10/hour).

Visit the islands

I will do a more in depth guide on the islands of New Caledonia in my next post, but visiting the islands should be a priority when you’re in Noumea. We managed to squeeze in 2 trips to Ile aux Canards (Duck Island), and a trip each to Ilot Maitre, Isle of Pines and Amedee Island.

Don’t forget to relax when you’re in Noumea, there is definitely a temptation to see and experience as much as possible, but downtime is important! Flop by the hotel pool with a good book, get a massage or stroll along the beach.

Visit downtown

If you have time, jump on the Hop On Hop Off bus for a tour of downtown Noumea including the museum, local markets and culture centre.

croque-monsieur-juice

Where to eat

I’m going to be honest, the food isn’t great in New Caledonia. As nearly everything has to be imported, food is overpriced and of average quality. Don’t expect the same standard of food that you receive in Australia.

Malongo – Complexe la promenade, Anse Vata

Great little cafe for an affordable breakfast or brunch. They also have decent coffee here, which is a rare find in New Caledonia!

Stone Grill – 113 Promenade Roger Laroque, Anse Vata

I loved this place so much we went two nights in a row! For around AUD$30 you got a steak of your choice, sauce and 2 sides (I usually went fries for the proper steak frites experience plus greens). The steak is served raw on a piping hot slab of stone and you cook it to yourself at the table. Fun and delicious!

Rimba Juice Cafe –   117 Avenue Roger Laroque, Anse Vata

A simple and cheap cafe, this place is perfect for a quick lunch. I had a croque monsieur and fresh juice, both hit the spot.

Snack Ulysee – 145 Route de l’Anse Vata, Anse Vata

Noumea is dotted with snack restaurants that mainly serves burgers and fries. It’s nothing flash, but for a cheap and cheerful meal I highly recommend Snack Ulysee.

Au P’tit Cafe –  8 av des freres Carcopino , Noumea

This French restaurant serves up a limited (only 4 choices), but authentic menu with super friendly service. Some of the staff only speak limited English, so brush up on your French!

Chez Toto –  13 rue Auguste Brun,  Latin Quartier

A quaint French bistro located in the downtown area serving up classic French cuisine. It’s small, so I highly suggest booking.

Malecon Cafe –  Promenade Roger Laroque , Baie des citrons

This beachfront bar serves up surprisingly good food. In typical NC-style it’s the usual suspects – baguettes, burgers and croque monsieurs but everything is washed down with a tasty cocktail and a beach view.

Creperie Le Rocher –  55 Promenade Roger Laroque,  Baie des citrons

You can’t go to a French-speaking country and not eat crepes. They do a great range of savoury and sweet crepes here that are fresh and relatively cheap.

L’Atelier Gourmand –  141 Route de l’Anse Vata,   Anse Vata

Go here for fresh baguettes, chocolate croissants (hello, breakfast) and a huge array of delicious pastries.

anse-vata-beach2

Getting from the airport

It was a complete nightmare getting from the airport to our hotel and it took over 4 hours(!!) I highly suggest you pre-book the airport shuttle before you arrive to avoid this problem. Taxis are rare and expensive.

French is the native language of New Caledonia and spoken throughout. Most people speak at least some English, however it is nice to make an effort and learn your hellos (bonjour) goodbyes (au revoir/bonsoir) and thank yous (merci).

Find a local grocery store

Eating in New Caledonia can be a very expensive affair (I know, I’ve mentioned it like 3 times). If you’re lucky enough to have a kitchen in your accommodation, stock up on eggs, yoghurt and milk to make your own food. If you don’t, you can still buy a delicious array of meats, cheeses and bread that will keep fine. Also note that some of the islands don’t have places to eat, so it’s best to pack snacks or a sandwich.

baie-de-citrons

Stayed tuned for part 2 of my New Caledonia travel guide, focusing on the stunning tropical islands!

Have you been to New Caledonia before? Do you want to go?

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13 comments.

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This is a neat run down of some of the places to eat in Noumea but I feel like you missed out on so much that was on offer. By sticking around the Anse Vata area you’re really not experiencing the best of what Noumea has. There is a lot of overpriced food like any typical tourist area and probably the ingredients have to be imported to plate up steaks and burgers as a tourist would expect. Not every place is great, but there are some real gems hidden there but you need to get out and explore.

Not everything is imported or expensive. The local mud crabs (about $13 a kilo!) and prawns from the fish market are some of the sweetest I’ve ever had; the local venison (made into French style sausage), flower scented honey, home made passionfruit syrup and ceviche style fish are wonderful; eggs are fresh and bright yolk yellow and the patisseries (banana tart!), bakeries (wood oven bakery up the hill in Anse Vata), coconut ice cream and chocolatiers (in Noumea) are excellent. The butcher at the back of the racecourse is worth a visit for fine local duck confit. There’s a local brewer too and locally grown and roasted coffee.

What is imported, is mostly French and cheaper than Australia, the array of French cheeses in the Michel Ange supermarche and local meat products made on site there are excellent. Vegetables are indeed expensive as they need to be imported, the islands aren’t good farmland. The prices aren’t over the top, just a bit more than what you would pay in Australia.

At the most, it took us about two hours to get to our hotel and that was travelling on a local slow bus all the way into Anse Vata. You must have been really unlucky that day!

We’re heading back again this August, can’t wait to eat more of those wonderful mud crabs!

Alison @B-Kyu

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I wish we had more time to explore, I’ve read through your posts and you really discovered some hidden gems! Our main focus was relaxing and exploring the islands, so we didn’t have the motivation/time to venture into downtown much. I am sure there would have been more good food there!

And as for getting from the airport, we arrived at night on Good Friday. The queue for the shuttle was so long the shuttle left whilst we were still in line! And there were no taxis. So there was about 10 of us stuck for 4 hours, not fun!

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Nice view, and love the sunset! Too bad food isn’t as great as you think, and not fit for the price. But overall, we think you had visited the right place for a vacay :)

Julie & Alesah Gourmet Getaways xx

Apart from the food issue, it was a great country to visit! x

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wow, the colouR of that Water! Sounds like you had a great holiday! X

It almost looks like it’s been photoshoppped (but it hasn’t) it’s really that blue and clear!

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I just booked myself a trip to New Caledonia so will definitely be taking your tips! :)

Have an amazing time Elly, you will love it!

[…] Welcome to Part 2 of my guide to New Caledonia! You can read Part 1, on Noumea, here. […]

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Went to the creperie you recommended today, and it was very closed. Look like it was closed for a while. A shame! Where do we find those mud crabs???

Oh no what a shame! Thanks for letting my know, I will update my info. Alison was the one who suggested the mud crabs, hop on over to her blog and feel free to ask! http://www.b-kyu.com/

' src=

Some great tips – thank you! Planning a trip there for later in the year, so I’ll be referring back to your posts as I do so.

You’re welcome, happy trip planning! :)

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Nouméa travel guide.

Noumea featuring general coastal views and boating as well as a small group of people

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Popular places to visit, aquarium des lagons.

Make time to visit the sea animals who live in Aquarium des Lagons during your trip to Baie des Citrons. Amble around this family-friendly area's beautiful beaches and enjoy its top-notch restaurants.

  • Jean-Marie Tjibaou Cultural Center

You can spend an afternoon browsing the exhibits at Jean-Marie Tjibaou Cultural Center in Nouméa. Amble around this relaxing area's beautiful beaches and enjoy its top-notch restaurants.

  • Noumea Cathedral

Tour a beautiful old cathedral that stuns with the beauty of its art and architecture and exceptional views over Nouméa’s harbour.

  • Place des Cocotiers

You can learn about the history of Nouméa with a trip to Place des Cocotiers. Stroll along the seaside in this relaxing area or visit its top-notch restaurants.

You can find the perfect gifts to bring home at Chinatown during your stay in Nouméa. Wander through the beautiful beaches and seaside in this romantic area.

Noumea Harbour

Explore the waterfront in Nouméa with a trip to Noumea Harbour. Wander the beautiful beaches and seaside in the area.

Nouméa Melanesian Tour

The "french touch" tour, blissful getaway: treat yourself to a spa massage in nouméa, water taxi signal island turtle tour for cruisers, guided city orientation tour of noumea, private 2h relaxing massage experience with essential oils, reviews of nouméa, 5/5 - excellent.

I think Noumea is a hidden gem for Australians to go to.

It’s a beautiful and scenic city, people are very nice and specially another French city outside of France, unfortunately due to logistical reasons, things are comparatively expensive. Don’t target for shopping but for pleasure it’s a beautiful place

Very expensive, lunch is from 1130-130 and dinner is from 7 pm this is something I did not like

Disappointing - not enough to do. Wouldn’t go back and wouldn’t recommend it as a holiday location to friends.

We will be back - just can't keep away - it's all my dreams come true - Pacific Island Paradise, with everyone speaking French, and wonderful French cuisine!

First time visitor found the location was a great holiday destination

  • Cities near Nouméa

Baie des Citrons which includes a bay or harbour and a beach as well as a large group of people

Baie des Citrons

  • Places of interest
  • Anse Vata Beach
  • Noumea Zoo and Botanical Gardens
  • Tina International Golf Course
  • Musée de Nouvelle-Calédonie
  • Stade Numa-Daly Magenta
  • Mont Coffyn
  • Clinical Kuindo Magnin - Nouville
  • La Fontaine Céleste
  • Parc Zoologique et Forestier
  • Orphelinat Bay

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New Caledonia Travel Guide

New Caledonia lies about halfway between Brisbane and Fiji, a Melanesian paradise that is also a French territory, with jaw-dropping natural beauty and a delectable influence of France (that’s right: think food). There’s an endless list of things to experience here, from exploring the tiny capital city of Noumea to island-hopping by sail boat, discovering the magnificent Isle of Pines, snorkelling above the pristine coral reefs of Ile aux canards (Island of ducks) and… we could go on.If you’re planning a visit, take a look through our New Caledonia travel guide and find out just what delights are awaiting for you in this special South Pacific paradise. We’ve collected the best tips from our travel experts, and have all sorts of suggestions for things to do, the best time to travel, where to stay, getting around New Caledonia and more.

New Caledonia quick facts

National language

Bottle of Coke/Pepsi (330ml)

AUD $1.00 = XPF ₣74.16

Restaurant meal (casual dining)

Electricity

Plug type: C

2 pins • 220V

Explore New Caledonia

Things to do

Attractions

Food & drink

Getting around

Where to stay in New Caledonia?

Each island of the French archipelago has its own unique charm and character. The sprawling main island of Grand Terre, with its tropical metropolis of Noumea, is a place where French architecture and dining clash spectacularly with native culture. Meanwhile, the intense wild allure of the eastern islands is inexplicable and unforgettable. Lush forests give way to pristine stretches of white sand and crystal-clear waters, creating the most surreal and uninhibited natural beauty. New Caledonia is unlike anything you have ever experienced, and you’ll love your holiday here no matter where you stay.

The gorgeous city of Noumea is a gem of wealth and culture in the South Pacific. New Caledonia's capital city, located on Grand Terre Island, is the true artistic centre of the country. French fashion, dining and sophistication soaks into almost every hotel, restaurant, and bar. Inviting beaches are home to hives of activity and the perfect places to lounge after a day of indulgence.

Located in New Caledonia's south, the Isle of Pines is as close as you can get to paradise on earth. Marvel at the pristine white sands and clear turquoise waters. Trek through the ruins of the first penal colony, which stands hauntingly in the overgrowth of the forests. Then relax in the serene natural seawater swimming pool. The isle is extravagant and effortlessly breathtaking.

The main island of Grand Terre is the absolute encapsulation of everything you are bound to love about New Caledonia. To the east, explore the breathtaking central mountain range and lush rainforests. To the west, discover the sublime World Heritage-listed lagoon and spectacular reef. The ancient earth and waterfalls of the Great South are a dazzling palate of red and blue.

The Loyalty Islands are a place of culture and harmony. The native Kanak tribes that inhabit the island are warm and welcoming. Stay overnight in a traditional tribal village and live as the locals do, in a charming timber bungalow. Feast on local cuisine as you're regaled with tales of myth and legend, handed down for generations. The Loyalty Islands are truly a place of magic.

Believe us when we say, this is just the start. Book your accommodation today!

Beach front with rocks coming out of the sand

Things to do in New Caledonia

The list of things to do in New Caledonia is almost endless. Each island is more beautiful than the next. Explore the tiny capital city of Noumea, or go sailing out to a secluded beach on a surrounding island, such as the Isle of Pines. The striking character of each island, restaurant, market and beach is unmistakable.

Home to one of the world's largest barrier reefs, New Caledonia is a hot-spot for snorkelling and diving. Swim among tropical fish, multi-coloured coral, and shipwrecks at Duck Island or Lifou. Whether you're a beginner or an expert, each reef, bay, inlet, and lagoon holds something splendid beneath its surface. Immerse yourself in the real-life aquarium that is New Caledonia.

Whether it's by sea, land or air, sightseeing New Caledonia is an enriching experience. Take a horseback ride along beautiful white sands, through lush rainforest, and across pastoral plains. Discover the islands on foot as you hike ocean headlands, or take a boat through the inland waterways and travel deep into the heart of the islands. Thrill-seekers, look to the skies – charted flights, helicopter tours, and skydiving are all available.

Ancient Kanak culture and modern French architecture meet in the most extravagant fashion. The Jean-Marie Tjibaou Cultural Centre is home to what many critics consider one of the most fascinating contributions to modern architecture in recent ages. Renzo Piano's awe-inspiring timber structures break the canopy of the coastline, almost appearing as fantastically modernistic skyscrapers. The centre is dedicated in memory of its namesake, the figurehead of the Kanak fight for independence.

The Musee du Nouvelle-Caledonie provides an excellent introduction to Kanak culture. Local exhibits of art, sculpture, and artefacts are on display to the general public. Located in the capital city of Noumea, this museum and gallery is the perfect place to immerse yourself in the rich culture and history of this gem of the South Pacific.

Sail from island to island and explore a world of tropical wonder. Travelling either by yourself or with a guide, there's no better way to hop between New Caledonia's islands. Weigh anchor and fish out on the bay, or come ashore to discover another side of the lush archipelago. Between islands, simply soak up the sea air and sunshine in style.

Discover unique environments as you explore the islands on foot. Hiking is where New Caledonia truly reveals itself. Explore the ancient lands up close and marvel at the striking beauty of nature. Parks and nature reserves are best hiked with a guide. Their knowledge of the lands, history, and nature will open your eyes to another side of New Caledonia. Some of the most beautiful hiking spots are in the mountainous Northern Province.

St Joseph's Roman Catholic Cathedral is a magnificent piece of classic French architecture in the most unorthodox surroundings. Following the construction plans of a former convict of the island, the penitentiary workforce were tasked with constructing the holy church in 1887. The structure took 10 years to complete, and the local timbers and stone used give the cathedral other-worldly sensibilities.

From the native fishermen to European exploration, New Caledonia has a long history of maritime affairs. The Musee Maritime de Nouvelle-Caledonie is an insightful glimpse into a territory that has seen many visitors come to its shores over hundreds of years. Learn about the first European exploration of Captain Cook, French settlement, and World War II combat.

Looking for an immersive experience? Then a tour is the way to go .

New Caledonia travel tips

Though it’s only a few hours’ flight from the east coast of Australia, this tropical oasis can also feel a world away from home – so having some New Caledonia travel tips can help you feel comfortable on your way to your holiday. While certain aspects of the territory may feel familiar, the French influence over the culture and language brings a touch of Europe to proceedings. It’s always a good idea to leave yourself plenty of time to plan ahead, no matter how close to home your destination is. Sufficient planning and preparation will ensure you get the maximum amount of enjoyment possible out of your travels.

Whether travelling by air or sea, all visitors to New Caledonia must hold a valid passport. Visitors from Australia and New Zealand can spend up to three months in New Caledonia without having to apply for a visa, provided your passport is valid for at least six months after your original departure date.

New Caledonian food is a varied mix of fresh seafood, poultry, root vegetables, and fresh fruit. The influence of classic French cuisine means that certain delicacies such as venison, aged cheese, and French wines are also available in certain restaurants and hotels. If you have any special dietary requirements, it's always best to ask your waiter or a member of staff for required amendments to the menu.

Electrical outlets in New Caledonia usually supply electricity at 220 volts, compared to Australia's standard of 240 volts. To enable the use of Australian standard electrical products, you'll need to purchase an appropriate adapter prior to your trip. This will ensure you can keep your phone, laptop, camera, and other gadgets charged each day.

La Tontouta International Airport is the primary airport serving New Caledonia. La Tontouta is located on the main island of Grand Terre, in the Paita commune of Noumea. The airport is approximately a 47km drive from the capital city's centre. New Caledonia enforces strict customs laws, especially in regards to the importation of foodstuffs and flora.

The local currency in New Caledonia is the Central Pacific Franc (CFP). New Caledonia is part of the French monetary area and, as such, the cash you exchange here can also be used in other regions of French Polynesia. Australian and New Zealand dollars are also widely accepted currencies in shops, hotels, and restaurants.

Tipping is not widely practised in New Caledonia. Much like in many European nations, you can round up your bill or leave a tip if you have received exceptional service, at your own discretion. It's also good to note that bartering in markets and shops is not part of the accepted local trade culture.

New Caledonia, as part of the French Republic, uses French as its official language. However, 28 distinct Kanak languages are also spoken across the territory, in addition to Indonesian, Vietnamese, Tahitian, Wallisian, and Chinese. With the territory's relative proximity to Australia and New Zealand, English is also spoken in many hotels, restaurants, shops, and across many guided tours.

Flights to New Caledonia

New caledonia food and drink.

New Caledonia food and drink provides an adventure in gastronomy. Tropical island flavours are served with a sophisticated French twist at over 150 restaurants in Noumea. Homegrown ingredients and fresh seafood are front and centre on the menu, making every dish delicious and indulgent. From tropical fruits, to cured meats and the best in gourmet crustaceans, New Caledonia food markets, such as the Port Moselle Market, offer extraordinary local produce. French cosmopolitan cuisine moves effortlessly between the modern and the traditional in New Caledonia restaurants. The finest French wines and sweets are where the European flavour is at its peak. If you’re after something to quench a thirst, try an island-brewed craft beer in one of the many bars on Promenade Roger Laroque.

Shop like a local in one of New Caledonia's fresh food markets. Head to the Port Moselle Market, where the atmosphere is always lively, and the stalls are overflowing with the best fresh produce the South Pacific has to offer. Juicy tropical fruits, vegetables, prawns, oysters, olives, fresh baguettes, and buttery croissants make the perfect ingredients for a picnic on the beach.

New Caledonia bars and nightlife are bubbling with fun. Why not take a sip in a seaside cocktail bar at Anse Vata Baie or Baie des Citrons and soak in the fantastic island sunset? Your choice of two casinos in Noumea means that the night need not be over so soon. If you're a beer-lover, enjoy an island-brewed beer in the ambience of a local pub

New Caledonia restaurants offer French class and refinement in tropical surroundings. Between the a la carte menus and delicious buffet dining, you'll enjoy the best in European-South Pacific fusion. The finest restaurants are usually found at the higher-end hotels of each island. New Caledonia is heaven for seafood lovers, with fresh prawns, crabs, oysters, and a large variety of fish prepared daily by professional chefs.

Get a real taste for the local cuisine by booking a tour .

New Caledonia through your eyes

Where to shop in new caledonia.

Designer fashion meets tropical island chic – New Caledonia shopping is quite a unique experience. The city of Noumea is your one-stop shop for all things designer and boutique. Along just two streets you’ll find the latest in French fashion: clothes, jewellery, accessories, perfume, and lingerie. Among the designer stores you can also find beautiful local-made jewellery and accessories. Meanwhile, custom accessory shops and markets, such as the Noumea Morning Market, are filled with local creations – these are great places to pick up a one-of-a-kind gift or keepsake. Make sure to make room in your luggage, because you won't be going home empty-handed.

Looking for a safe and simple way to bring your money when you travel? Our Travel Money Card has you covered!

When is the best time to travel to New Caledonia?

The best time to travel here is anytime, thanks to the fabulous weather in New Caledonia. The delightful semi-tropical climate means the islands are home to perfectly metered temperatures and lots of sunshine. Every season is ideal for taking a dip in the crystalline waters of the ocean and lagoons, or doing a spot of sunbathing. New Caledonia guarantees blue skies, with only 20 days of overcast and rain on average for the entire calendar year. The territory also enjoys south-easterly breezes, sure to keep you cool and comfortable.

New Caledonia's warmest months are best enjoyed at the beach. The average summer temperature is around 25°C, with humidity sitting around 77 per cent. Summer can also bring infrequent rainfall, with February typically being the hottest and wettest month on the calendar. Summer is also New Caledonia's most popular tourist season, so make sure to book ahead! Appropriate Clothing: Shorts, a t-shirt, and a hat. Don't Forget: An umbrella, just in case.

In New Caledonia, it's summer every day of the year! With the highest temperatures still sitting around 30°C and the lowest at 17°C, New Caledonia provides the perfect escape from the Australian cold snap. The sunshine hours are also at their highest, meaning you've got more daylight to enjoy than any other time of year. Appropriate Clothing: Light summer attire. Don't Forget: Something warmer for those cooler evenings by the ocean.

In autumn, the peak tourist season may be ending, but the weather is absolutely perfect. With the average autumn temperature sitting around 22°C and humidity of 75 per cent, this is a great time of year to visit the South Pacific. With the rain season over, visibility is at its best for diving and snorkelling. Local festivals and markets are in full swing too. Appropriate Clothing: Swimwear. Don't Forget: Leave some room in your luggage for market goodies.

The tropical beauty of New Caledonia is at its stunning peak during spring. The islands become a patchwork of breathtaking pacific flora, turning every beach, garden, and forest into a postcard-perfect sight. The days are warming up again with highs of 35°C, though the nights are even cooler, with lows of 13°C. Make sure to pack for all occasions. Appropriate Clothing: Something light for the daytime, something warm for the night. Don't Forget: Your camera.

Don't miss out. Book your flight today!

How to get around New Caledonia

Getting around is simple with so many options for New Caledonia transport readily available. With an inexhaustible list of things to see across so many beaches, towns and islands, getting from one spot to another may not always be achievable using one method of transport. Whether you travel by water taxi, coach, hire car, or simply by walking, New Caledonia is well equipped to cater to all your transport needs. New Caledonia is a place of unparalleled beauty, so luckily getting from A to B is never a dull experience.

New Caledonia taxis are largely confined to the capital city of Noumea and the larger surrounding towns on Grand Terre. Taxis on Grand Terre Island are operated by Radio Taxis de Noumea, with the main taxi rank located on Rue Anatole France. Taxis are also available at the international airport, though trips can be quite pricey.

Walking New Caledonia is the best way to soak in your surroundings and experience the rich local culture first-hand. The capital city of Noumea is very pedestrian-friendly, especially around its major shopping and dining precincts. Hiking trails, whether from beach to forest or along stunning mountain ridges, give you a chance to explore regions less travelled.

New Caledonia has two major public bus services: Karuia Bus, servicing the greater Noumea urban area, and RAI, which services the interurban coach routes. Both service approximately 360 stops throughout New Caledonia. Karuia operates along two routes and is specifically designed to cater for visitors. The RAI network consists of 40 long-distance touring coaches, perfect for travelling further afield on the main island.

Let us help you organise your own wheels for exploring. Hire a car today .

What are the best beaches in New Caledonia?

Immaculate white sands and crystal blue waters – New Caledonia beaches are the epitome of perfection. Journey out of the wilderness to discover the most strikingly beautiful stretches of sands in the South Pacific. There’s a reason the native Kanak culture is considered so peaceful and welcoming: island living is an exercise in relaxation. Lounge in the white sands, or take to the water and experience absolute revitalisation. New Caledonia is home to so many beaches, and they’re all waiting for you to discover them. From city-side fun in the sun to deserted coves, find your holiday haven in the South Pacific.

Kuto Bay lies in the breathtaking Isle of Pines, a veritable paradise of the South Pacific. This is the perfect spot to relax in a deckchair or go for a swim while the sun is out. Then, by night, there's a stunning waterfront restaurant where you can enjoy the finest in fresh seafood caught within the bay. Kuto Bay is unspoiled natural beauty at its peak.

Be greeted by the lovely locals of Mare Island on Yejele Beach. The protected sands are home to calm waters and genuine native hospitality. Yejele Beach is also the perfect spot for snorkelling. Just a short swim from the shore, you'll find stunning coral reefs. Back on the shore, enjoy a freshly baked French baguette over a picnic in the shade of tropical trees.

Hang out where the locals do – on Noumea's Kuendu Beach. Located at the furthermost tip of the Nouville Peninsula, Kuendu is an attractive and popular spot. The locals spend most of their weekends here playing in the sands and taking a dip in the clear blue waters. The waves lap charming bungalows and shacks along the lovely cove.

In the capital city of Noumea, Anse Vata Beach offers relaxation on the doorstep of New Caledonia's primary shopping district. Anse Vata is the island's longest beach, most popular with paddle boarders. Sit back on the sand with a book and a drink while you watch yachts and local fishermen sail out past the unobstructed horizon.

Located on the picturesque main Island of Grand Terre, Poe Beach looks like it was lifted from a holiday postcard. Perfect blue and white waves crash against stunning rocky headlands, and the forest gives way to large uninhabited coves. The fragrance of the ocean breeze and pine forests is wonderfully intoxicating. Don't forget your camera!

New Caledonia Frequently asked questions

When you're packing for a trip to New Caledonia, don't forget the essentials like your passport, visa, phone, chargers, camera, sunblock, some CFP Francs and the correct power adaptor. From there, we recommend packing a towel, plenty of bathing suits, insect repellent, a hat, flip flops, some walking shoes and a great book to enjoy as you relax by the water.

New Caledonia's island archipelago is the perfect place to enjoy idyllic ocean life and a unique mix of European and Melanesian culture. During your stay, experience the French island city of Noumea, go snorkeling and surfing in Bourail and head inland to enjoy river hikes and adventures in Dumbea.

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The best time to dive into postcard-perfect weather and enjoy calm ocean waters in New Caledonia is between September and November. Just keep in mind that everyone loves coming at this time, so those keen to avoid crowds may prefer to visit between February and July. 

Spend your days in New Caledonia hitting the reset button and submitting to life in the slow lane. Nature lovers can live their best life snorkelling, hiking, paddle boarding, diving and enjoying a bevvy of water and land-based activities. Beyond that, foodies will delight at the fusion of French and Melanesian cuisine, while history lovers can explore museums and architecture to learn more about Kanak culture. 

With years of experience under our belts, and a decent tan to show from our time spent relaxing on tropical beaches, the Flight Centre Travel Experts are the perfect people to ask about your holiday package to New Caledonia. From family holidays to adventure trips, cruise stopovers and romantic stays, we can easily curate a New Caledonian holiday package to meet your needs.  

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Plan your trip to New Caledonia

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New caledonia travel tips: 20 tips for a smooth and stress-free trip.

New Caledonia’s beauty made me forget it all, but I have to be honest:  organising a trip to this tropical destination was a lot harder than I expected . Here are some New Caledonia travel tips that will save you from any headaches and frustrating moments! If you’re looking for some shopping tips in New Caledonia, check out this article .

If you’ve been to this island paradise, please share your tips in the comments!

New Caledonia travel tips: Things to know before you go

Planning a trip to New Caledonia? Check out this article about the things to do in New Caledonia for inspiration  and this packing list with tips to ensure you don’t forget anything essential!

Don’t go to New Caledonia on a big cruise boat

isle of pines - cruise boat

That’s a very personal opinion, of course, but I think visiting New Caledonia via a big cruise boat is a waste . I’ve explained it all in this article . But to sum it all up: with hundreds of people crowding the popular spots, you won’t get the chance to immerse yourself in the local culture and have even a glimpse of an authentic, peaceful experience.

Related article:  Big Cruise to New Caledonia? Not for me!

Use your phone to book New Caledonia accommodations and tours

If you choose not to stay at a hotel, booking tours and accommodations in New Caledonia can be a bit of a hassle, especially if you don’t speak French. You may struggle to find current information and book online. You will often need a week or so and a couple of follow-ups to receive a reply to some of your emails… when you do receive a response. It’s part of the laid-back island life!

If you speak French, don’t hesitate to call . That’s how the smaller businesses work on the islands. If you don’t speak French, I highly recommend tip #6. 

Stay flexible when you travel around New Caledonia

Don’t plan too much. Flexibility will save you a lot of trouble during a trip to New Caledonia. It’s not surprising to have your domestic flight time changed only a couple of days before flying. Most of the time, it is due to the weather. From our experience, it was a technical issue. Another time, locals blocked the airport on smaller islands to put pressure on the domestic airline for better deals for locals. It’s a good idea to purchase travel insurance *.

Avoid planning activities on the days when you have to travel from one place to another.

Read this article about how we handled situations when things didn’t go as planned during our New Caledonia trips.  

Remember Noumea has two airports!

Noumea, the capital of New Caledonia, has two airports, and you don’t want to mix them up. Tontouta airport is where you’ll arrive for international flights; it is actually about 45 min away from Noumea by car. Domestic flights to the smaller islands leave from Magenta airport, close to the town centre.

Hire a car… or not!

New Caledonia is not a cheap destination, so hiring a car will greatly impact your budget. You may not need a car for your entire trip, but don’t leave the decision for when you arrive there – especially for the smaller islands. During the peak season, car rentals can get fully booked !

Noumea : If you only have a couple of days to explore the town, it is likely that you won’t need a car. Book a hotel near the Anse Vata or Baie des Citrons , and then you can walk to most tourist attractions. However, if you are a group flying from Tontouta, transfers can quickly get expensive (3,000 XPF per person or 10,000 XPF for a private car) so you may want to save this and rent a car. If you have more time in Noumea, I would recommend a vehicle to wander out of the town, where the most beautiful things are.

Related article:  Noumea, the Capital of the world’s largest lagoon

Grande Terre:  You won’t be able to explore the main island without a car.

Isle of Pines: We did not need a car for our short stay. All the activities we did included a transfer from the hotel. If you stay in Kanumera or Kuto, you can walk to different restaurants. If you stay a bit longer and want to experience more than the usual tourist attractions, a car is needed.

Lifou:  Lifou is a big island. In my opinion, you cannot visit Lifou without a car.

Ouvea:  Even if Ouvea is not a big island, it is very long. Many tours leave from the Lekini campsite, so you may choose not to get a car if you stay there or at the nearby resort. Otherwise, I highly recommend booking one, especially as the north of the island is a lovely place to explore.

From our experience, I wouldn’t recommend driving by night in New Caledonia, especially if you are there during the festive period. We have seen a couple of accidents and heard many bad stories.

New Caledonia Things To Do - South of Grande Terre

Consider using a travel agent

If you stay away from resorts, the booking system in New Caledonia has room for improvement. You may have to call several times to get the right person to talk to, and find out that the information you read on a website wasn’t accurate or that they are full. When you place a booking, it is often all over the phone, and you don’t get a written confirmation.

I had some fun surprises with people who were not that professional. One took my booking without asking for the dates. Another one said she took note of my booking, but I had to get there early or they would give it to someone else. Although you’d have to pay a fee, you may want to save time and reduce your worries by asking a travel agent to help. That’s what we did for our accommodation on Lifou and Ouvea. We felt it was safer to have a written receipt and someone to talk to if we had an issue with the booking. We were a group of six, so finding a Plan B at the last minute would have been challenging.

It was stressful during the trip, but we mostly had good surprises once in the archipelago. The only issue we actually had was with our car rental on Ouvea Island. We specifically asked to hire a vehicle for six people and were told it was possible. Unfortunately, the travel agent couldn’t book our car rental on Ouvea, so we had no written confirmation. A beautiful car was waiting for us at the airport when we arrived, but it was for five people only. Well, they said the boot was big enough for the sixth person! 

Choose the right season to visit New Caledonia

new caledonia - isle of pines moro - christmas

We travelled to New Caledonia from Christmas to the beginning of the year. I had to take compulsory leave during the festive season, so our dates weren’t flexible. You will have a better experience if you avoid the Christmas holiday season.

Locals are on vacation at that time too. Families come together, so people are less available for tourists. Some tours are not running at all. You have less choice available for accommodation. Between the bank holidays and the weekends, many things like car rentals or internal flights are harder to plan.

Also, the beginning of the year is cyclone season. It doesn’t mean you should not go at that time: we were lucky and hardly had rain during our two-week trip. But there is a risk with the weather whereas the rest of the year is mostly sunny.

You may want to check the marine life season too. For example, manta rays were mating during our stay so we could not go to their cleaning station to swim with them. It wasn’t a big deal for us as we are lucky to have manta rays coming close to Brisbane . But it is always a pleasant experience, and it could become a highlight if you plan to see them.

new caledonia - ouvea - rain and sunset

Inform your bank about your trip to New Caledonia

This tip is valid for any foreign destination you go to, but it won’t hurt to put it here as a reminder. You’ll be in trouble if you cannot withdraw cash because you set a daily limit on your bank account. Half of our group had issues at the ATM and could only withdraw a small amount of cash! How inconvenient!

Don’t stay for too long in Noumea

That’s a personal point of view, but Noumea is probably the worst place we visited in New Caledonia. Don’t get me wrong; Noumea is great, and I will happily go back. It’s just that the rest of New Caledonia is a lot more stunning. So if you have more than a couple of days in New Caledonia: escape from the town!   Related article:  Noumea, the Capital of the world’s largest lagoon

New Caledonia Things to do - Noumea

Manage your expectations

We met lovely people who were happy to see us and had a fabulous trip. And I’m glad we managed our expectations regarding the level of service we would get during this voyage. People from New Caledonia are very friendly, but it is quickly obvious that they are not always well-trained in tourism and hospitality. It’s not a destination built with tourism in mind like some other Pacific Island. That’s part of the charm! 

A few extra travel tips to make your trip to New Caledonia cheaper

Avoid hotels.

Hotels are very expensive in New Caledonia, and they’re the most straightforward accommodation option for visitors who don’t speak French at all.

But check out this great alternative for those with a smaller budget and looking for a more authentic experience: you can stay “with” locals. What you get when you stay with locals seems random. I advise you to read some reviews on TripAdvisor to know what to expect – although our experience was every time a lot better than many reviews we read.

If you are a group, staying in a “ case ” is a good deal. Most of the time, you pay a fixed amount for the “case” for two people, and then the price to add extra people is a lot cheaper. Twice, we got a “case” for the six of us!

Except in Noumea, you won’t find many AirBNB rentals. If you are happy to carry around your tent and linen, camping is the cheapest option for accommodation.

Lilo reve - lifou - accueil en tribu

Consider using Le Pass

If you want to fly to the different islands, Air Caledonie Pass could save you a bit of money. It allows you to get four flights for around 30,000 XPF. Destinations covered from and to Noumea are Ouvéa, Maré, Lifou, Isle of Pines, Koné and Touho. You’ll need to contact [email protected] to organise Le Pass for you. The special tariff is not available for every flight so you will need to tell them the destinations and dates you would like to fly, and they will offer the best match they can.

I recommend checking the prices with their online booking system before signing for Le Pass: if you manage to book a promo fare, you could even get a better deal than Le Pass! 

This way, you’ll have room to bring food with you from Noumea to avoid restaurants on the islands, if you do want to save money that way. Tourism brings significant revenue to the people living on the island, so I recommend playing the game of spending money there. But it can rapidly become expensive to pay for three meals a day. Sometimes, I had my own food for breakfasts as I found them really pricey and generally of low quality, whereas I could be very happy with the French biscuits that I usually miss so much.

Also, as luggage weight is limited when you have Pass tickets with the local airlines, it makes it easier to travel with limited luggage. Check out this packing list for New Caledonia ; I’m sure you’ll find helpful tips there.

Take your snorkelling set

new caledonia snorkel mask

There are places where you can hire a snorkelling set, but that’s not everywhere. It is way better to carry your snorkelling equipment to enjoy what the world’s largest lagoon can offer fully. We did not bring fins because it is bulky and not needed too much in the lagoons. But we brought our masks and snorkels.

If you need to buy equipment in New Caledonia, I recommend going to Decathlon in Noumea.

New to snorkelling? You could be interested in this full-face mask * that allows you to breathe more naturally (with the nose) and gives more side vision than the smaller masks. Click here to find out more * or check out these tips about choosing the best snorkel gear .

New Caledonia travel tips once you’ve arrived

Get a mobilis.

That’s how they call the sim card to have a local mobile phone number. It can be bought at the Post Office or at a cell phone store. You will often need a mobile phone to confirm the activities, the hotel bookings, to check the flight times and to book the restaurants. This will be less true if you book your trip with the help of an agency, but you would still want the agency to be able to update you if your flight time has changed…!

Don’t forget sunscreen and clothes to cover yourself

The sun in New Caledonia is extreme. You can get burnt in a few minutes if you don’t wear sun protection. This can ruin your holidays, so don’t take any risks and wear sunscreen! Be careful to have enough sunscreen to cover your stay on the islands. It is a rare gem on the islands, but it is easy to buy in Noumea!

Responsible travel tip : Did you know that your sunscreen could harm the fragile ecosystem of the coral reef? It’s essential to be mindful of what you’re applying to your skin when snorkelling or swimming near the reef. The best way to protect your skin from the sun is to cover up with long sleeves and pants. If you must use sunscreen, choose a mineral-based one to avoid harmful substances (see the full list here ). Mineral ingredients are less harmful to the environment and provide excellent protection. Apply the sunscreen at least 20 minutes before entering the water to ensure maximum effectiveness.

Talk to local people

If you speak French or are lucky to find locals who speak English, have a go and talk to them. Most of the local people we met were very open to speaking about their culture and their environment. We learnt a lot from them, from a cultural point of view and also got excellent travel tips.

Ask when the cruise will be there

Isle of Pines - Piscine Naturelle

The locals usually know when a cruise will be there. Try to plan your visits around that: some places not too far from where the boat stays will be crowded. You will have a better time further away, by picking a destination that requires a car, for example.   Related article:  Big cruise to New Caledonia? Not for me!  

Travel with cash

You will need to pay in cash for most of the guided activities. If you choose to avoid hotels and stay with locals without using a travel agency, you’ll need to pay by cash here as well. Some restaurants only accept cash. You may even have to pay your dives in cash on some islands. We had no issues with the ATM on the islands, but we were told while preparing for the trip that they can sometimes be empty. So don’t take any risks and travel with cash to cover most of your expenses.

Try the local specialities… but don’t forget to book a table!

New Caledonia - Isle of Pines - snails

New Caledonia has a strong island culture which is fantastic to discover. Add some French notes, and you won’t be disappointed with the local dishes.

Don’t be afraid to eat at the small local “restaurants”.  You will often need to book in advance for restaurants on the islands, outside of Noumea. Sometimes, you will not have a choice with a menu: they serve you what they have today. Sometimes, you will have to let them know what you want to eat in advance. And some places are expensive for what you actually get. But overall, we had great experiences eating in New Caledonia, and we discovered new savours! 

Where is New Caledonia?

New Caledonia is a French archipelago in the South Pacific , located near Vanuatu . It is the closest foreign destination from the East Coast of Australia .

What are your New Caledonia travel tips? Leave a comment below!

Check out more things to do:, this post has 9 comments.

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It’s always a good idea to pack your own mask and snorkel if going to the tropics. Some places you can pick up germs from the snorkel. Advice from our local dive shop who have talked to people coming back after trips.

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That’s a very good advice indeed! Thank you for sharing, Carolyn!

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What a great article! I couldn’t agree more with all that you have advised (I’m New Caledonian). Especially true is the fact that there is no mass tourism in New Caledonia – an advantage and drawback all at once. Alexandra @mynewcaledonia

Thank you for your sweet words, Alexandra!

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Hi, I just found your article and I must say that you gave pretty amazing and very accurate tips to travel in New Caledonia. Also I’m a local and I thank you for encouraging travellers to talk to people and to explore more than just Nouméa. I might just add one thing, shops close early. When you leave the city it becomes even more complicated as there are less grocery shops and some of them even close during lunch break.

Thank you very much Meriba for taking the time to leave feedback and an additional tip. It’s indeed very good to mention the shops close early. And also that most supermarkets don’t open on Sundays! I was used to this in France but now that I’m in Australia, I lost the habit and I got surprised! 😛

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Thank you guys. I have been to Noumea on a cruise ship and loved it. I would go back in a heart beat especially now that I have seen your blog.

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Fantastic and so true I am trying to book a ferry from noumea to Oro bay it’s a nightmare I am so stressed

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Thanks for the info, planning my 60th there in August and trying to work out what I can cover in 2 weeks and how much time to spend in Noumea. Luckily my husband is french speaking and he’s looking forward to using french after 10 yrs living in New Zealand.

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noumea travel guide book

Isles of Pines New Caledonia.

New Caledonia

New Caledonia's dazzling lagoon surrounds it with every hue of blue, green and turquoise. The light and the space simply delight your senses. By becoming a World Heritage site, the lagoon has helped bring the people together to celebrate and protect it, from village level through to government.

Attractions

Must-see attractions.

Place des Cocotiers

Place des Cocotiers

This is the heart of the city. The square slopes gently from east to west and at the top is a band rotunda, a famous landmark dating back to the late…

Fort Téremba

Fort Téremba

Grande Terre

Built in 1871, this historic fort originally held convicts brought to the area to build roads. Following a revolt by local Kanaks against French colonial…

Le Parc des Grandes Fougères

Le Parc des Grandes Fougères

This 4500-hectare park, in the mountains above Farino, features tropical rainforest with rich and varied flora and fauna. As the name suggests, tree ferns…

The Heart of Voh

The Heart of Voh

North of Koné, near the township of Voh, there’s a mangrove swamp which has developed some unusual natural designs. The most intriguing is a perfect heart…

Pont de Mouli

Pont de Mouli

Loyalty Islands

It may seem unusual to recommend a road bridge as a top sightseeing spot, but at Pont de Mouli, Ouvéa’s tip, Mouli island, is cut off by a wide channel…

Anse Vata

Orientated east–west, this popular beach is a hotspot for visitors to Noumea, with hotels, restaurants, shopping and other attractions. Only 10 minutes…

Baie des Citrons

Baie des Citrons

Orientated north–south and less than 10 minutes from the city centre, trendy Baie des Citrons attracts locals and visitors alike. The beach is great for…

Aquarium des Lagons

Aquarium des Lagons

This aquarium is stunning. Species found in New Caledonian waters – including nautilus, sea snakes, stone fish, turtles, sharks and stingrays – have…

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Dec 23, 2015 • 5 min read

Looking for a relaxing family travel experience with more than 'just' beaches and sunshine? New Caledonia offers travellers a taste of the tropics but…

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Stock photo of a gold sandy beach with palm trees at Hienghene Bay, Grande Terre Island, New Caledonia, South Pacific.

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New Caledonia

Latest update.

Reconsider your need to travel to New Caledonia due to ongoing civil unrest and travel disruptions.

New Caledonia map May 2024

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Local emergency contacts

Fire and rescue services.

Call 18.

Medical emergencies

Call 15 or go directly to the medical centre or hospital.

Call 17 or contact the nearest police station or gendarmerie.

Maritime emergencies

Call 16 or radio on VHF 16 – Inmarsat – MMSI.

Advice levels

Reconsider your need to travel to New Caledonia.

We continue to advise reconsider your need to travel to New Caledonia due to ongoing civil unrest and travel disruptions. 

  • Security incidents, including arson and carjacking continue across the country. Political demonstrations and protests may turn violent at short notice. There's a nationwide curfew in place nightly between 8pm and 6am. Continue to follow the advice of local authorities and limit movement until advised otherwise. Essential services are impacted.

You can access La Tontouta International airport by road. This can change at short notice. Roads have been damaged, and many have blockades in place. You'll need to assess your situation before travelling. Follow the advice of local authorities.

AirCalin is operating a limited number of flights each week. Expect lengthy waiting times and baggage limits. Schedules can change at short notice. Contact your airline.

  • Australians needing emergency consular assistance should contact the Australian Government's 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on +61 2 6261 3305 (from overseas) or 1300 555 135 (within Australia). The  Australian Consulate-General in Noumea is open during normal business hours.

If you require emergency medical care, ring 15, and duty doctors will assess whether they will send an ER doctor-ambulance (SMUR) or another to treat you. This includes taking you or another individual to the hospital.

  • Car theft, vehicle break-ins and household break-and-enters occur. Look after your belongings and always lock your car and accommodation.
  • Cyclone season is from November to May, but cyclones and severe weather can occur at any time. They can cause landslides and flooding and may disrupt essential services. Ensure you understand  New Caledonia's cyclone alert system  (in French).
  • New Caledonia can experience earthquakes, tsunamis and bushfires. A tsunami can arrive within minutes of a tremor or earthquake. Monitor the websites of the  New Caledonian Department of Emergency Management  (in French with safety instructions in English for cyclone alert levels) and the  New Caledonian Weather Bureau  (in French) for updates. Your tour operator or accommodation provider may also be able to provide advice.
  • The  Consular Services Charter  details what the Australian Government can and can't do to help you overseas.
  • For consular assistance, contact the  Australian Consulate-General in Noumea

Full travel advice:  Safety

  • Insect-borne diseases such as  Dengue ,  Chikungunya  and  Zika  are risks in New Caledonia. ​Ensure your accommodation is insect-proof, and use insect repellent. If you're pregnant, discuss the risks of Zika virus with your doctor before you travel. 
  • Outbreaks of leptospirosis are common, especially after heavy rain. Wear closed-in shoes. Avoid swimming in rivers or muddy water. Store food in enclosed containers and use a straw when drinking from cans.
  • Other foodborne, waterborne, parasitic and infectious diseases occur. These include influenza, scabies and conjunctivitis. Get treatment if you have itchiness or skin lesions. In rural areas, drink boiled or bottled water. Tap water is generally safe to drink in towns.
  • The standard of medical facilities in Noumea is high, but those in outlying areas are basic. Medical treatment is expensive. Search and rescue facilities are limited. Some parts of New Caledonia don't have mobile phone coverage. Ensure your travel insurance covers all your medical conditions and medical evacuation.

Full travel advice:  Health

  • Understand the local laws. New Caledonia is an overseas territory of France. A mix of French and local laws apply. You must always have photo identification with you. 
  • Same-sex marriage is legal, but same-sex relationships aren't widely accepted outside of Noumea.
  • Outside of tourist areas, standards of dress and behaviour are conservative. Dress and behave appropriately.
  • You need permission from customary authorities to visit certain areas. If in doubt, follow local advice.

Full travel advice:  Local laws

  • You likely won't need a visa for a tourist visit of up to 3 months. However, the total length of your stay must not exceed a total of 90 days over a period of 180 days (6 months). Entry and exit conditions can change at short notice. Contact  the Consulate-General of France in Sydney or the Embassy of France in Canberra  for the latest details.
  • International passenger flights to and from New Caledonia may be suspended with little or no warning.
  • Travel Insurance is mandatory for entry to New Caledonia.
  • Entry protocols apply to private sailboats and cruise ships visiting New Caledonia. All immigration procedures have to be completed in Noumea, with some approvals required prior to arrival.

Full travel advice:  Travel

Local contacts

  • For consular assistance, contact the  Australian Consulate-General in Noumea .

Full travel advice:  Local contacts

Full advice

Civil unrest and political tension, security situation.

Security incidents, including arson and carjacking continue across the country. Political demonstrations and protests may turn violent at short notice. There's a nationwide curfew in place between 8pm and 6am. You should continue to follow the advice of local authorities and limit movement until advised otherwise. Essential services are impacted.

Australians needing emergency consular assistance should contact the Australian Government's 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on +61 2 6261 3305 (from overseas) or 1300 555 135 (within Australia).

Demonstrations and protests

There's an ongoing risk of politically motivated protests and civil unrest.

Demonstrations and protests and other events that draw large groups of people can quickly turn violent. 

To protect yourself:

  • avoid demonstrations, public gatherings and roadblocks
  • monitor the media and other sources for potential unrest
  • follow the advice of local authorities

Politically-motivated protests, strikes and industrial disputes can lead to social unrest. They often disrupt essential services, including:

  • local transport
  • domestic flights
  • international flights

If there's a protest or strike:

  • check on your flights before going to the airport
  • ask your tour operator if it affects tourist services
  • follow the instructions of local authorities

More information:

  • Demonstrations and civil unrest

Swimming safety

Several shark attacks occurred in 2023. A fatal attack claimed the life of an Australian tourist in February at Chateau Royal Beach, following two similar attacks at the same beach in January and February, which resulted in life-threatening injuries.

Local authorities have installed a shark net at the Baie des Citrons beach, which is now open to swimming and beach activities. Baie des Citrons is patrolled daily by lifeguards from 8.45am to 5pm from December to April and from 8.45am to 4pm from May to November.

Chateau Royal-Meridien has been equipped with a temporary shark net and is open to swimming and beach activities only during lifeguard surveillance hours, from 8.45am to 5pm until the end of March, when a permanent shark net will be installed.

Waterports and swimming outside of these areas are permitted on an 'own risk' basis.

Information on swimming and other water activities can be found on the  Noumea Town Hall Website  (in French). More information on the risk of sharks in New Caledonia is available on the  New Caledonia Tourism Website  (in English). 

Beaches in New Caledonia may be closed at short notice due to bad weather, shark sightings or during shark-catching campaigns.

Shark mitigation measures, including shark nets, are currently used only on sections of Baie des Citrons and Chateau Royal-Meridien beaches. Beach evacuation procedures in New Caledonia may be less developed than those in Australia.

Be alert to warning signs and follow the advice of local authorities at all times. A red flag with a shark logo means beaches have been closed due to a shark sighting or shark-related incident. 

The  New Caledonia Tourism website  advises visitors to:

  • avoid areas where it is risky to swim, including ports, boat moorings, marinas, murky waters near drainage outlets or river mouths, and the Nouville Peninsula area in Noumea
  • avoid swimming after periods of heavy rain or other weather events that agitate the water
  • avoid swimming at dawn and dusk
  • swim close to shore
  • only swim at patrolled beaches that use a flag system. 

Patrolled beaches use the following flag system:

  • Green flag: supervised swimming and no particular danger
  • Orange flag: supervised swimming but dangerous conditions
  • Red flag: swimming is prohibited
  • A red flag with a shark logo: the beach has been closed due to a shark sighting or shark-related incident.

More Information:

  • Water sports and activities

Tours and adventure activities

Transport and tour operators don't always follow safety and maintenance standards. This includes adventure activities, such as scuba diving.

If you plan to do a tour or  adventure activity :

  • check if your travel insurance policy covers it
  • ask about and insist on minimum safety requirements
  • always use available safety gear, such as life jackets or seatbelts

If proper safety equipment isn't available, use another provider.

Roadside security incidents can occur suddenly. Dangerous incidents include:

  • stone-throwing

Major routes have been affected.

Local authorities can close major roads without warning.

Petty crime

Car theft, vehicle break-ins, petty thefts and household break-and-enters occur.

Drink spiking can happen. If you're drugged, you'll be more vulnerable to theft and  assault .

To protect yourself from petty crime:

  • look after your belongings when you're in public
  • lock your car, hide your belongings and keep windows up
  • don't leave food or drinks unattended
  • never accept drinks, food, gum or cigarettes from strangers or new friends
  • Partying safely

Cyber security 

You may be at risk of cyber-based threats during overseas travel to any country. Digital identity theft is a growing concern. Your devices and personal data can be compromised, especially if you're connecting to Wi-Fi, using or connecting to shared or public computers, or to Bluetooth. 

Social media can also be risky in destinations where there are social or political tensions or laws that may seem unreasonable by Australian standards. Travellers have been arrested for things they have said on social media. Don't comment on local or political events on your social media. 

More information:  

  • Cyber security when travelling overseas  

Terrorism is a threat worldwide.

Climate and natural disasters

New Caledonia experiences  natural disasters  and  severe weather , such as:

  • earthquakes  and  tsunamis

The  New Caledonian Department of Emergency Management (Sécurité Civile – DSCGR)  (in French) responds to natural disasters and severe weather. Safety instructions are available in English for cyclone alert levels. 

A free crisis hotline is activated if there's a natural disaster or emergency. The emergency hotline is +687 05 05 05 (French). Your tour operator or accommodation provider may also provide timely advice.

To protect yourself if a natural disaster occurs:

  • secure your passport in a safe, waterproof location
  • monitor local media and other sources
  • keep in contact with friends and family

Get weather reports and disaster updates:

  • Météo France Nouvelle-Calédonie  (in French)
  • Fiji Meteorological Service
  • Australian Bureau of Meteorology
  • Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System
  • Joint Typhoon Warning Center, US Navy

Follow the advice on staying safe when there's a natural disaster .

If you're travelling during cyclone season or after a natural disaster, contact your airline or tour operator to check if services are affected.

Cyclones and severe weather

Cyclone season is from November to May, but cyclones and severe weather can occur at other times.

The direction and strength of cyclones can change suddenly.

Cyclones and severe weather can bring:

  • flooding waves on shore areas
  • flooding and landslides
  • disruptions to infrastructure and essential services

If there's a cyclone or severe tropical storm:

  • you may get stuck in the area
  • flights could be delayed or suspended
  • available flights may fill quickly
  • access to seaports could also be affected
  • adequate shelter may not be available

New Caledonia has a 4-phase cyclone alert system:

1. PRE-ALERT: potential cyclone activity in the weather observation zone of New Caledonia — follow weather forecasts and bulletins ( Emergency Management New Caledonia - Pre-Alert instructions in English )

2. ALERT 1: a cyclone is approaching and may reach New Caledonia in the next 18 hours — prepare for a cyclone ( Emergency Management New Caledonia - Alert 1 instructions in English )

3. ALERT 2: a cyclone will hit New Caledonia in less than 6 hours — protect yourself and stay indoors ( Emergency Management New Caledonia – Alert 2 instructions in English ) 

4. SAFEGUARD PHASE: a cyclone is moving away — remain alert ( Emergency Management New Caledonia – Safeguard Phase instructions in English ) 

If a cyclone is approaching:

  • know the evacuation plan for your hotel or cruise ship
  • identify your local shelter
  • monitor  New Caledonian Department of Emergency Management (Sécurité Civile - DSCGR)  (in French) with safety instructions in English for cyclone alert levels
  • monitor  Météo France Nouvelle-Calédonie  (in French) for  cyclone updates
  • monitor local radio

Once the SAFEGUARD PHASE is announced:

  • take care leaving your shelter
  • look out for debris
  • avoid fallen electrical wires

Flooding and mudslides

Heavy rains can cause flooding and mudslides. These can lead to:

  • deaths and injuries
  • destruction of property
  • evacuations

Earthquakes and tsunamis

New Caledonia occasionally experiences  earthquakes  and  tsunamis .

Tsunamis can happen within minutes of a nearby tremor or earthquake.

Ask your tour operator, host or accommodation provider about local procedures and what to do during an earthquake.

Tsunami risks are higher:

  • in the East Coast
  • in the Loyalty Islands
  • in the Isle of Pines

To prepare yourself for earthquakes and tsunamis, you can:

  • subscribe to tsunami alerts from the  Global Disaster Alert and Coordination system
  • get earthquake updates from the  US Geological Service
  • get tsunami updates from the  US Tsunami Warning Center

If there's an earthquake or tsunami:

  • monitor tsunami updates
  • move to higher ground if you're in a coastal or low-lying area

If you're near the coast, move immediately to high ground if advised by local authorities or if you:

  • feel a strong earthquake that makes it hard to stand up
  • feel a weak, rolling earthquake that lasts a minute or more
  • see a sudden rise or fall in sea level
  • hear loud and unusual noises from the sea

Don't wait for official warnings such as alarms or sirens.

Once on high ground, monitor local media.

After an earthquake:

  • expect aftershocks
  • be prepared for delays and changes to your travel plans
  • ask your travel agent and tour operators to confirm travel services and accommodation bookings
  • New Caledonian Department of Emergency Management (Sécurité Civile – DSCGR) Earthquake information  (in French)
  • New Caledonian IRD (French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development) seismological network  (in English)
  • New Caledonian Department of Emergency Management (Sécurité Civile – DSCGR) Tsunami information  (in French)

New Caledonia can experience  bushfires .

Bushfires usually occur from September to February. They can occur in other months.

To protect yourself from bushfires:

  • look and listen out for bushfire warnings
  • New Caledonian Department of Emergency Management (Sécurité Civile - DSCGR) Bushfire information  (in French)

Travel insurance

Travel insurance is mandatory for entry to New Caledonia and must cover all medical and hospitalisation expenses and repatriation costs, including medical evacuation. The Australian Government won't pay for these costs.

You may need to present your travel insurance certificate when departing for and arriving in New Caledonia.

Medical costs are high. For example:

  • an intensive care bed could cost more than $A5,500 per day
  • ambulance transfers can cost over $A1,250
  • a helicopter evacuation within New Caledonia costs over $A6,500

Get comprehensive  travel insurance  tailored to your mode of transport (e.g. cruise ship) and region of travel before you leave. Ensure your travel or medical insurance covers you for existing conditions and medical evacuation.

If you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel. This applies to everyone, no matter how healthy and fit you are.

If you're not insured, you may have to pay many thousands of dollars up-front for medical care and more for your return to Australia with medical assistance.

  • what activities and care your policy covers
  • that your insurance covers you for the whole time you'll be away

Cruise ship evacuations

Australians have been evacuated, including from cruise ships, to hospitals in Noumea. Some insurance claims have been refused, often due to pre-existing conditions. Many international  cruises  stopover in New Caledonia. To reduce your risks if you plan to travel on a cruise ship:

  • check the onboard medical facilities are suitable
  • understand the costs of onboard medical treatment
  • French High Commission in New Caledonia  (in French)
  • New Caledonia Tourism , including  visas and entry requirements  (in English) 

Physical and mental health

Consider your physical and mental health before you travel, especially if you have an existing medical condition.

See your doctor or travel clinic to:

  • have a basic health check-up
  • ask if your travel plans may affect your health
  • plan any vaccinations you need

Do this at least 8 weeks before you leave.

If you have immediate concerns for your welfare or the welfare of another Australian, call the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on +61 2 6261 3305 or contact your  nearest Australian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate  to discuss counselling hotlines and services available in your location.

  • General health advice
  • Healthy holiday tips  (Healthdirect Australia)

Medications

Not all medication available over the counter or by prescription in Australia is available in other countries. Some may even be considered illegal or a controlled substance, even if prescribed by an Australian doctor.

If you plan to bring medication, check with relevant authorities if it's legal in New Caledonia. Take enough legal medication for your trip.

Carry a copy of your prescription or a letter from your doctor stating:

  • what the medication is
  • Your required dosage
  • that it's for personal use
  • Consulate-General of France in Sydney  including information on customs and  medicine for personal use
  • French Customs Directorate in New Caledonia  with  information for travellers , including  authorised goods  and customs regulations applicable to  private yachts  (all in French)

Health risks

Insect-borne diseases.

Insect-borne diseases such as  Dengue ,  Chikungunya  and  Zika  are a risk in New Caledonia, especially in the warmer and wetter months.

If you're pregnant, the Australian Department of Health and Aged Care recommends you:

  • discuss travel plans with your doctor
  • consider deferring non-essential travel to Zika-affected areas

To protect yourself from disease:​ ​

  • make sure your accommodation is insect-proof
  • use insect repellent
  • wear long, loose, light-coloured clothing

Get medical advice if you have a fever, muscle pain, a rash, diarrhoea or a severe headache.

  • Health Department of New Caledonia (Direction des Affaires Sanitaires et Sociales - DASSNC)  (in French)
  • DASSNC disease-specific information and reporting procedures , including  DASSNC Health Diseases  (in French)
  • Infectious diseases

Leptospirosis

Small outbreaks of  leptospirosis  are common. More serious outbreaks can happen after heavy rainfall.

To protect yourself against leptospirosis:

  • wear closed-in shoes
  • avoid swimming in rivers or muddy water
  • store food in enclosed containers
  • don't drink straight from cans — use a straw
  • remove rubbish from around your home

Other health risks

Waterborne, foodborne, parasitic and other infectious diseases occur. These include: 

  • conjunctivitis
  • COVID-19  (Australian Department of Health and Aged Care)
  • Actualité COVID-19 | Gouvernement de la Nouvelle-Calédonie  (in French)

It's generally safe to drink tap water in towns.

To protect yourself from illness:

  • drink boiled water or bottled water with sealed lids in rural areas
  • attend to symptoms, such as itchiness and skin wounds
  • avoid raw and undercooked food, such as salads
  • Health Department of New Caledonia (Direction des Affaires Sanitaires et Sociales – DASSNC)  (in French)
  • Infectious diseases  

Medical care

Medical facilities.

The standard of medical facilities in New Caledonia is high. However, search and rescue facilities are limited. The difficult terrain limits quick access.

Mobile phone coverage may be limited in some parts of the main island. Mobile network coverage is available on the  New Caledonian Postal and Telecommunications Directorate  (OPTNC).

In the Southern Province:

  • CHT (Centre Hospitalier Territorial) Gaston Bourret  (in French) is the main public facility at the Koutio Medipole in Dumbea, and their emergency ward is open 24/7.
  • Clinique Kuindo-Magnin  (in French and  English ) is the main private facility in the suburb of Nouville in Noumea, and their emergency ward is open daily from 7am to 11pm.

In the Northern Province, the main public hospitals are:

  • Koumac (Hôpital Paula-Thavoavianon)  – Emergency, general medical and mid-wife services.
  • Poindimié (Hôpital Raymond Doui-Nebayes)  – General, physical and rehabilitation, continuing care services.
  • Koné (Pôle Sanitaire du Nord)  – Emergency, general medical, surgery, anaesthesia, maternity, operations, day-care and continuing care services.

The only decompression chamber is in Noumea ( SCADEM - Travaux sous-marin Nouvelle-Calédonie  (in French)).

Many popular dive sites are on other islands. If there's an accident, it may take several hours to reach medical facilities.

Medical costs are high. Make sure your insurance covers medical evacuation and your planned activities.

You're subject to all local laws and penalties, including those that may appear harsh by Australian standards. Research local laws before travelling.

If you're arrested or jailed, the Australian Government will do what it can to help you under our  Consular Services Charter . But we can't get you out of trouble or out of jail.

New Caledonia is an overseas territory of France. A mix of French and local laws apply.

  • Travel advice for France

Penalties for drug offences, even small amounts, include fines and imprisonment. 

  • Carrying or using drugs

Proof of identity

You must always carry ID.

LGBTI information

Under French law, same-sex marriage is legal in New Caledonia.

However, outside Noumea, you may encounter more conservative attitudes.

  • Advice for LGBTI travellers

Australian laws

Some Australian criminal laws still apply when you're overseas. If you break these laws, you may face prosecution in Australia.

  • Staying within the law and respecting customs

Dual citizenship

France recognises dual citizenship.

  • Dual nationals

Local customs

Outside of tourist areas, dress and behaviour standards are conservative. Take care not to offend.

Visits to certain areas, including popular fishing and maritime areas, may require prior authorisation from the relevant customary authorities.  This is carried out through engaging in a 'coutume' (customary acknowledgement gesture). 

  • North Province Tourism Group, Custom  (in French)
  • New Caledonia Tourism – Traditions, Customs and Etiquette  (in English)

Visas and border measures

Every country or territory decides who can enter or leave through its borders. For specific information about the evidence you'll need to enter a foreign destination, check with the nearest embassy, consulate or immigration department of the destination you're entering. 

You likely won't need a visa for a tourist visit of up to 3 months. However, the total length of your stay must not exceed a total of 90 days over a period of 180 days (6 months). 

You may need to show proof of:

  • sufficient money for your stay
  • return or onward travel ticket
  • adequate travel or health insurance covering medical and hospitalisation expenses as well as any repatriation costs, including medical evacuation
  • the purpose of your visit

In other situations, you'll need a visa issued by the  French representations in your country of residence  and, subject to your circumstances, a work permit issued by the Government of New Caledonia.

New Caledonia is an overseas territory of France.

Contact  the Consulate-General of France in Sydney or the Embassy of France in Canberra  for up-to-date information on visa requirements. 

Border measures

Check with your airline or travel provider on minors' travel regulations, including those travelling unaccompanied.

Entry protocols apply to private sailboats and cruise ships visiting New Caledonia. All immigration procedures must be completed in Noumea, with some approvals required before arrival. Contact your airline, cruise line, local port agent or tour operator for the latest updates. 

  • French High Commission in New Caledonia  with entry conditions to New Caledonia by foreign nationals (in French).

Other formalities

Some goods aren't allowed in New Caledonia.  Other goods require specific approvals or other formalities.

  • New Caledonian Department for Animal, Food and Rural Affairs  (Direction des Affaires Vétérinaires, Alimentaires et Rurales – DAVAR) including  Information for travellers  (both in French) and a  list of products not requiring import permit or biosecurity-sanitary certificates  (in English).
  • Customs Directorate in New Caledonia , including information for travellers  arriving by air  or on  private yacht  (all in French)

Some countries won't let you enter unless your passport is valid for 6 months after you plan to leave that country. This can apply even if you're just transiting or stopping over.

Some foreign governments and airlines apply the rule inconsistently. Travellers can receive conflicting advice from different sources.

You can end up stranded if your passport is not valid for more than 6 months.

The Australian Government does not set these rules.   Check your passport's expiry date before you travel with the  French authorities in Australia . If you're not sure it'll be valid for the required period, consider getting  a new passport . 

Lost or stolen passport

Your passport is a valuable document. It's attractive to people who may try to use your identity to commit crimes.

Some people may try to trick you into giving them your passport. Always keep it in a safe place.

If your passport is lost or stolen, tell the Australian Government as soon as possible.

  • In Australia, contact the  Australian Passport Information Service .
  • If you're overseas, contact the nearest  Australian embassy or consulate .

Passport with ‘X’ gender identifier 

Although Australian passports comply with international standards for sex and gender, we can’t guarantee that a passport showing 'X' in the sex field will be accepted for entry or transit by another country. Contact the nearest  embassy, high commission or consulate of your destination  before you arrive at the border to confirm if authorities will accept passports with 'X' gender markers. 

  • LGBTI travellers  

The local currency is the Pacific Franc (XPF).

Declare all amounts over 10,000 euros (or equivalent) on arrival and departure. This covers all forms of currency, not only cash.

Australian dollars are accepted by some businesses.

Change Australian dollars for XPF at banks and authorised exchange bureaus.

There are ATMs and credit card facilities in Noumea and other major centres.

Take enough cash if you're travelling to remote areas.

  • New Caledonia Currency | New Caledonia Tourism & Travel  (in English)

Local travel

New Caledonia Tourism  provides information on getting around New Caledonia by road, air and sea.

Travel disruptions

Industrial and political disputes, as well as strikes, can cause disruptions to essential services, including transport links. Monitor the media and follow the advice of local authorities (see  Safety ).

Road travel

You can drive in New Caledonia on a valid Australian driver's licence for up to one year after arrival.

To find out about driver's licences and driving regulations:

  • Visit the  New Caledonian Department of Infrastructure and Land Transport , including information on  foreign licences  (in French)
  • Visit the  New Caledonian Public Service  website, which includes information on alcohol limits.

On the road:

  • drivers may be unlicensed or drunk
  • vehicles may be poorly maintained
  • vehicles may be uninsured

You could encounter:

  • carjackings

These incidents are uncommon but dangerous (see  Safety ).

Leave the area quickly and safely if stones are thrown at your car.

If you plan to drive:

  • check your travel insurance covers it
  • learn local traffic laws and practices
  • keep your car windows up and doors locked
  • don't drink and drive
  • Driving or riding

Motorcycles

Make sure your travel insurance covers you when using a motorbike, quad bike or similar vehicle.

Always wear a helmet.

Hire a taxi from a taxi rank or make a phone booking. Book your taxi in advance. Long delays are common.

In Noumea, taxi rank locations and tariffs are available on the website of the  Southern Province Tourism Office  (in French). The Noumea Central Taxi number +687 28 35 12 is available for bookings 24/7.

You can only hail a taxi from the street in Noumea if it's located more than 100 metres from a taxi rank.

Some taxis only accept cash. Others may accept payment by credit card.

Other municipalities in New Caledonia have taxi services. Check the website of the  relevant city hall (municipality) from the New Caledonian Government website  for further information.

Public transport

Buses operate throughout Grande Terre (the main island). Visit the website of New Caledonia Tourism for information on  public transport services  (in English).

On other islands,  public transport  is limited.

Passenger ferries run from Noumea to:

  • Île des Pins
  • Maré, Lifou and Ouvéa in the Loyalty Islands

Many international  cruises  stopover in New Caledonia. See  Health

  • Travelling by boat

DFAT doesn't provide information on the safety of individual commercial airlines or flight paths.

Check  New Caledonia's air safety profile  with the Aviation Safety Network.

Emergencies

Depending on what you need, you should contact your:

  • family and friends
  • travel agent
  • insurance provider

Call 17 or 1022 or contact the nearest police station or gendarmerie.

Always get a police report when you report a crime.

Your insurer should have a 24-hour emergency number.

Consular contacts

Read the  Consular Services Charter  for what the Australian Government can and can't do to help you overseas.

For consular assistance, contact the Australian Consulate-General in Noumea.

Australian Consulate-General, Noumea

Norwich Building Level 2 11 rue Georges Baudoux Artillerie, Noumea, New Caledonia Phone: (+687) 27 24 14 Consular assistance email:  [email protected] Website:  noumea.consulate.gov.au Facebook:  Australia in New Caledonia and Wallis and Futuna Twitter:  @AusCGNoumea

The public telephone line (+687 27 24 14) and consular assistance mailbox of the Australian Consulate-General in Noumea ( [email protected] ) are monitored regularly during business hours (Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm, except public holidays).

Outside of office hours, if you require urgent consular assistance, please follow the prompts (or details below) to be connected to the 24/7 Consular Emergency Centre in Canberra.

Check the Consulate-General website for details about opening hours, any temporary closures and other information useful to your circumstances.

24-hour Consular Emergency Centre

In a consular emergency, if you can't contact the Consulate-General, call the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on:

  • +61 2 6261 3305 from overseas
  • 1300 555 135 in Australia

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Beach of Anse Vata in Noumea

  • End of swimming ban on Nouméa beaches

Since Friday the 08 December 2023 , swimming and water sports activities have once again been permitted on all beaches including Anse-Vata beach, Château Royal and Le Méridien beaches, Ilot Maître “Master Island” and all other islets.

Protected and Supervised

Two protected and supervised areas have been set up:

  • Baie des Citrons (Lemon Bay) benefits from a 750-metre-long barrier on a 10-hectare protected stretch of water, under the daily supervision of lifeguards from 8.45am to 5pm (4pm in the cool season).
  • Château Royal and Le Méridien beaches now also include a temporary supervised swimming area, which will be removed once a long shark net barrier has been installed by the end of March 2024.

Swimming is allowed outside the protected areas at one’s discretion

As a reminder, following shark attacks in early 2023, Nouméa town hall issued a temporary ban on “all swimming in the 300 m coastal strip” in the capital, while policies were put in place to regulate the most dangerous species and organise the gradual installation of anti-shark protection nets.

Pic Malaoui hike

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From New Caledonia to Micronesia

Nouméa - guam, dates: 2/22/2026 to  3/11/2026.

Embark with  PONANT  on a 18-day expedition cruise  to the heart of remote islands in the  Pacific . Aboard  Le Soléal , you will follow an itinerary that will take you from New Caledonia to Guam to explore rich  local cultures  and exceptional underwater life.  

From Noumea, Le Soléal  will first take you to the sublime island of  Lifou  with its picture-postcard landscapes of white-sand beaches and tropical vegetation, located in the Loyalty archipelago.

Your cruise will continue to Vanuatu , often called the ‘ happiest country in the world ’, where its 83 islands showcase a palette of extremely varied landscapes. Espiritu Santo , the archipelago’s main island, promises you an unforgettable aquatic experience in an idyllic setting.

You will then set sail for the Solomon Islands where you will have the opportunity to witness traditional culture as well as enjoy stunning white-sand beaches with swimming and snorkelling. You will also visit the  Autonomous Region of Bougainville , a unique group of islands that are ecologically and geographically part of the  Solomon Islands archipelago but not politically part of the islands.

After a port of call in  Papua New Guinea , the mysteries of  Micronesia  will reveal themselves to you. A scattering of islands and atolls, lost in the heart of the northern Pacific, this area is rich in  Second World War  history. The shores of Chuuk Lagoon and Pulap Island still retain traces of a tragic past and a declared Underwater Military Museum is the resting place of wrecks from Japan’s military air and sea fleets.

Micronesia consists of a sprinkling of islands and atolls that benefit from an exceptional environment. The atolls of Ifalik offer incredibly rich underwater scenery that promises unforgettable dives while, on land, Lamotrek Island has white sandy beaches and coconut trees, and villages that exude deep-rooted traditions.

Your cruise will end in Guam , the biggest volcanic island of the Mariana Islands.

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Your itinerary

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Your itinerary - From New Caledonia to Micronesia

A unique cruise among the Pacific’s isolated islands, exploring rich local cultures and exceptional underwater life. Shore visits in zodiac inflatables with a team of experienced naturalist guides. The...

Your trip in detail

Your ship le soléal.

PONANT activities

Important trip details

All destinations

1 888 400 1082 or contact your travel advisor

Choose your stateroom

Superior Stateroom Deck 3  

From $9,830 per person 30% Ponant Bonus

Deluxe Stateroom Deck 3  

From $10,600 per person 30% Ponant Bonus

Prestige Stateroom Deck 4  

From $11,710 per person 30% Ponant Bonus

Prestige Stateroom Deck 5  

From $12,260 per person 30% Ponant Bonus

Prestige Stateroom Deck 6  

From $12,930 per person 30% Ponant Bonus

Deluxe Suite Deck 6  

From $17,810 per person 30% Ponant Bonus

Prestige Suite Deck 5  

From $23,900 per person 30% Ponant Bonus

Prestige Suite Deck 6  

From $25,120 per person 30% Ponant Bonus

Owner's Suite Deck 6  

From $40,560 per person

Complete your trip

Additional services For more peace of mind, PONANT selects stays and flights then takes care of your transfers for your trip as well as shore visits before and after the cruise.

Additional services

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*Price is per person, based on double occupancy, based on availability, and subject to change at any time. The category of stateroom to which this price applies may no longer be available.

Discover all destinations

Northern Europe & Scandinavia

Oceania & Pacific Islands

Africa, Middle East & Indian Ocean

Services provided

  • 24-hour room service
  • Inclusive Wifi internet access (availability dependent on navigation and latitude)
  • Individually-controlled air conditioning
  • Dressing room with shelves and closet
  • Dressing table and hairdryer
  • Dyptique Paris top-of-the-line bath products
  • Nespresso coffee maker and boiler
  • Electronic safe
  • Direct line telephone
  • Bose Bluetooth speaker
  • Flat screen TV, international channels (availability dependent on navigation) and videos on demand
  • 110V American (two flat pins)/220V European (round sockets with two round pins)
  • Three ADA staterooms

Select your stateroom category

Stateroom size

  • - than 269 ft²
  • + than 269 ft²

Superior Stateroom Deck 3

30% Ponant Bonus

Deluxe Stateroom Deck 3

Prestige Stateroom Deck 4

Prestige Stateroom Deck 5

Prestige Stateroom Deck 6

Deluxe Suite Deck 6

Prestige Suite Deck 5

Prestige Suite Deck 6

Owner's Suite Deck 6

Boarding conditions and passenger travel abilities

We invite you to read our boarding conditions and passenger travel abilities by clicking here . 

Any new reservation implies the acceptance of these conditions.

To guarantee your entry into one or several countries, you must ensure that you comply with the formalities and health requirements specific to each destination. In just a few clicks on our online search engine, find all the formalities you must complete prior to your departure (visas, entry authorisations for each country, vaccinations, etc.).

The international situation can change rapidly, so be sure to check this information regularly prior to your departure. However, please note that we always recommend our guests contact the relevant national immigration and customs and border control authorities directly to find out what rules apply to their specific situation. PONANT is not responsible for any decisions made by guests based on the information provided by the online search engine.

The information below is current but subject to change at any time without advance notice from government authorities. Please consult your respective government agencies for visa and health information.

Passport valid for at least six (6) months beyond the completion of your trip. Passport must contain at least two completely clear, blank, unused visa pages for each visa required, not including any amendment pages. Visa pages with stains or ink from other pages in the passport are not usable. Guests who deviate from the scheduled embarkation or disembarkation port should research the foreign entry requirements for the port country. Due to government regulations, regrettably, Ponant will have to deny boarding to any guest who fails to obtain the appropriate travel documentation for this trip.

Guam - USA: Depending on your nationality, an ESTA (available on https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/esta) or visa may be required. Please contact USA consulate website for details. A copy of your visa or ESTA must be sent to PONANT at the very latest 45 days prior to your cruise date. In case the ESTA is sufficient to enter the USA, we also ask you to keep a copy of your ESTA with your passport throughout the duration of your trip.

List of items prohibited on board

To guarantee the safety and well-being of our guests, certain items are strictly prohibited on board. Should you have one of these products or objects in your possession, they will be confiscated immediately and will not be transported on the ship. When an item transported aboard is considered illegal, the relevant authorities will be notified systematically.

Click here  for the full list of items prohibited on board. 

Warning about the use of drones : the use of drones aboard PONANT ships, whether they are sailing at sea, at a port of call or anchored, is strictly forbidden. The use of drones on land in the Arctic and Antarctic regions is also strictly forbidden by international polar regulations. In other regions, it may be possible to use drones on land if permission has been obtained from the relevant authorities of each country and each region travelled through, as well as a pilot’s licence that should be obtained from your home country. Passengers are responsible for obtaining these permits; they should be able to present them at all times. Passengers who do not obtain these authorisations expose themselves to the risk of legal proceedings.

Expedition programmes include activities such as zodiac outings and landings (sometimes with "wet landings"), moderate walks to more active hikes, all accompanied by your expedition team of naturalist guides.

Ports of call, visited sites, outings and landings will depend on weather conditions, winds and the state of the sea. These can force a change of plans at any time. The Captain and the Expedition Leader may at any time cancel or stop any activity, or even modify the itinerary. The final itinerary will be confirmed by the Captain, who will take into account the touristic quality of the sites and above all, the safety of the passengers. His decision will be based on advice from experts and authorities.

Travelling to isolated regions is an exhilarating experience. In remote areas, please remember that you are far from modern hospitals with full medical facilities, thus evacuation is extremely expensive. Without adequate medical coverage, all expenses will have to be immediately paid with your personal funds. We urge you to subscribe to full coverage insurance, choose your insurance company very carefully, be extremely vigilant and ensure your insurance is fully comprehensive, especially if you are insured by your credit card. PONANT offers an insurance contract with extensive guarantees, please contact us for more information.

Clothing tips:

  • Cotton comfortable and light-weight shorts/bermuda shorts
  • Light weight long trousers
  • Long-sleeved breathable SPF50+ shirts
  • Cotton short sleeved T-shirt
  • Aquatic UV long-sleeved T-shirt for sun protection during snorkeling or swimming 
  • Aquatic non-slip sandals 
  • Windproof, waterproof and breathable outer layer
  • Broad brimmed anti-UV hat with strap and veil to protect the neck
  • Comfortable walking shoes

Accessories:

  • Highly protective sunglasses.
  • Sunscreen and after-sun with high SPF index & insect repellent
  • Binoculars (strongly recommended for wildlife viewing).
  • Small waterproof backpack (to protect your camera from water).
  • Camelbak (backpack with water pockets)
  • Walking poles (highly recommended).

Please note:

During your visits to some local communities, all guests will be required to dress respectfully. Ladies must have their shoulders and thighs covered. Gentlemen should have their shoulders covered also.

Ideal clothes for life on board:

During the days spent on board, you are advised to wear comfortable clothes or casual outfits. The entire ship is air-conditioned, so a light sweater, a light jacket or a shawl may be necessary. When moving about in the public areas of the ship and the decks, light but comfortable shoes are recommended.

Informal evening:

In the evening, you are advised to wear smart-casual attire, especially when dining in our restaurants where wearing shorts and tee-shirts is not allowed.

  • Simple dress
  • Skirt or trousers
  • Pleated trousers or chinos
  • Sports jacket

Officer’s evening:

For all cruises longer than 8 nights, an Officer’s Evening with a white dress code may be organized. Therefore, we encourage you to bring a stylish white outfit for the occasion (otherwise black and white).

Gala evening:

During the cruise, two gala evenings will be organised on board. Thus, we recommend that you bring one or two formal outfits.

  • Cocktail attire
  • Evening dress (if you wish to)
  • Tie recommended, possibly bow tie (if you wish to)

A small shop is available on board offering a wide range of outfits, jewellery, leather goods and many accessories.

A laundry service (washing/ironing) is available on board, but unfortunately there are no dry cleaning services. For safety reasons, your cabin is not equipped with an iron.

TECHNICAL OUTFITS:

  • Shorts / bermudas
  • Wind and waterproof light “breathable” outer layer
  • Sweater/pullover for the evening
  • Short and long sleeved cotton shirts
  • Waterproof UV long sleeved T-shirt
  • Long sleeved cotton shirt for sun protection during zodiac excursions and excursions ashore
  • Ankle canvas shoes (which dry quickly and protect ankles)
  • Aquatic shoes for wet landings on shore

ACCESSORIES:

  • Polarized sunglasses with high UV filter
  • Walking poles
  • Small waterproof backpack
  • Swimsuit (for the Spa on board)
  • Gym wear (fitness)
  • Battery charger and memory cards for your camera
  • Mobile phone charger
  • Sun portective hat/cap with strap and veil to protect the neck

HEALTH CARE:

  • Sunscreen and after-sun lotion
  • Mosquito and insect repellent
  • Medications and prescriptions

OUTFITS ON BOARD:

  • Casual outfits for the day
  • Smarter outfits for dinners
  • Elegant outfits for Gala evenings
  • White or black and white outfit

PRECAUTIONS:

In your hand luggage, remember to bring any medicines that you need, and possibly a small spare bag of toiletries (in case of delay in the delivery of your baggage by the airline). Remember to always have your travel documents with you in case you need them: hotel vouchers, cruise vouchers, return flight tickets... Never leave them in your hold luggage.

All our cabins have a safe. We recommend not to go ashore with valuable jewellery.

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Diving - Expedition Cruise

Supervision of the dives

Your dives will be led by your PONANT instructor. He will take care of your safety and that all goes smoothly. On some diving sites, as in natural reserves or if the local regulations require it, a local guide will escort the diving.

Level required for scuba diving on this cruise

The minimum level required for scuba diving on this cruise is 2 star CMAS or the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver (or equivalent). The certification card, the diving log book and a recent medical certificate (less than 12 months) must be presented at the beginning of the cruise to our main diving instructor.

Process of the dives (certified divers)

The instructor reserves the right to check divers’ ability for maximum safety. As we will dive in remote places, the dives will be done without decompression stop. A safety stop of 3 minutes at 5 metres will be mandatory. The depth that can be reached will depend on the certification of the divers:

  • For those with PADI Advanced Open Water Diver certificate (or equivalent), the maximum depth can be up to 25 metres.
  • If two PADI Advanced Open Water Divers (or equivalent) wish to dive together independently, they must have a briefing first. They must have dive computers and are allowed to go to a maximum depth of 20 metres.

Duration of the dives

The diving activity lasts from 2 to 3 hours, which includes the journey to the diving site and the diving. This duration may vary according to the site, the level of divers, weather conditions and the number of participants. For experienced divers, the duration of dives varies between 35 and 60 minutes depending on the site, the diver’s experience and consumption.

Supplied equipment

  • Diving wetsuit
  • Stabilising jacket
  • Regulator with octopus and pressure gauge
  • Diving computer (for divers mastering their use)

Mask and snorkel: for health reasons due to Covid-19, we strongly recommend that you come on board with your own mask and snorkel .As an exception, you will be able to borrow them in accordance with sanitary conditions.

The passenger may participate in scuba diving activities, subject to compliance with certain conditions established in accordance with the health, scientific and medical measures applicable on the day of the dive.

* within the limit of available stock.

  • A unique cruise among the Pacific’s isolated islands, exploring rich local cultures and exceptional underwater life.
  • Shore visits in zodiac inflatables with a team of experienced naturalist guides.
  • The Solomon Islands, remote destination in the South Pacific and a tropical Eden.
  • Micronesia, a scattering of islands and atolls with breathtaking underwater scenery.
  • Ports of call on Lamotrek Island and the Ifalik atoll, featuring spectacular beaches and traditional villages.
  • Encounters with local people: cultural performances, dances, arts and crafts.
  • From Espitiru Santo, don’t miss a unique performance by the ‘water music women’.
  • Region’s rich Second World War history, particularly Chuuk (Micronesia), where a number of Japanese wrecks can be found under water.
  • Opportunity of diving (PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or equivalent) with an experienced instructor on board and of snorkelling with your expedition team.

From New Caledonia to Micronesia-Fotolia_176004273_M.jpg

Ports of Call & Excursions

Nouméa

February 22, 2026 - Nouméa

Embarkation 2/22/2026 from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM Departure 2/22/2026 at 6:00 PM

Perched on a peninsula between bays and hills, on the south-west coast of Grande Terre,  Noumea  enjoys a  magnificent natural setting.  The town shelters some exceptional biodiversity, thanks especially to the coastal mangroves. To feel the town’s heartbeat, you can mosey in the  place des Cocotiers,  where Noumeans love to gather. The Tjibaou cultural centre unveils the secrets of the  kanak culture.  As for the Hagen castle or the  maison Célières,  these are precious witnesses of a colonial past. But Noumea is also about sumptuous beaches.

Lifou

February 23, 2026 - Lifou

Arrival 2/23/2026 Departure 2/23/2026

You’ll land around 100km east of  Grande-Terre . An ancient coral atoll atop a collapsed volcano, Lifou is today the largest and highest of the  Loyalty Islands . This is an outstanding natural site, waiting to be explored: to the north, the coastline ends abruptly in sheer cliffs, while to the south lie expanses of long white sand beaches. Lovers of wild plantlife may well be tempted by a walk further inland, where the rich and authentic  Kanak culture  is proudly upheld by the local community.

At sea

February 24, 2026 - At sea

Arrival 2/24/2026 Departure 2/24/2026

During your journey at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This journey without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, depending on the activities offered, or to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

Espiritu Santo Island

February 25, 2026 - Espiritu Santo Island

Arrival 2/25/2026 Departure 2/25/2026

At the end of the world, in the north of New Caledonia, lies Vanuatu, a little archipelago that subsists mainly from fishing and farming. It is composed of several islands,  Espiritu Santo being the largest and one of the most beautiful. You can meet the people here who are very welcoming and who live in harmony with nature. Plus you will see unimaginable landscapes formed of volcanic rocks, as well as sandy beaches and lagoons beckoning you to dive into their of turquoise waters. You will be surprised to find, in the middle of dense vegetation, brackish water with an amazing ecosystem called “blue holes”. If paradise  exists, it must be here.

February 26, 2026 - At sea

Arrival 2/26/2026 Departure 2/26/2026

Santa Ana Island

February 27, 2026 - Santa Ana Island

Arrival 2/27/2026 Departure 2/27/2026

Owaraha (formerly Santa Ana) is located at the eastern end of Makira (San Cristobal) and just north of the smaller Owariki (Santa Catalina). Our ship will navigate through the picturesque channel separating the Islands before dropping anchor just outside Port Mary. The islanders are well known for preserving ancient traditions and producing intricate wooden carvings . Their artefacts include magnificently carved fishing floats and ceremonial bowls intricately inlayed with shells. After a short zodiac ride ashore you will be guided through the village to an open area to witness a number of traditional performances. Afterwards experience life in a traditional Solomon Island village or take a swim in the warm tropical waters of Port Mary.

Honiara, Guadalcanal Island

February 28, 2026 - Honiara, Guadalcanal Island

Arrival 2/28/2026 Departure 2/28/2026

Honiara is the capital city of The Solomon Islands, administered as a provincial town on the north-western coast of Guadalcanal Island. Honiara comes from the local Ghari Language “naho-ni-ara” meaning 'facing the ara', the place where the southeast winds meet the land. Discover this city, its beautiful landscape, and the significant role it played in World War II . Particularly The Battle of Henderson Field, the last of the three major land offensives conducted by the Japanese in 1942. 

March 1, 2026 - At sea

Arrival 3/1/2026 Departure 3/1/2026

Bougainville

March 2, 2026 - Bougainville

Arrival 3/2/2026 Departure 3/2/2026

The Autonomous Region of Bougainville , formerly known as the North Solomons Province, has been known for its picture–perfect beaches and bays since French explorer Louis-Antoine de Bougainville first sighted the island and gave it its name in 1768. The region played a significant role in the Pacific theatre of war during WWII. With 685 km of coastline and 240,000ha of coral reefs teeming with life there are many destinations awaiting discovery.

Rabaul, Bismarck Archipelago

March 3, 2026 - Rabaul, Bismarck Archipelago

Arrival 3/3/2026 Departure 3/3/2026

Set at the eastern end of the island of New Britain, the tropical port town of Rabaul has always been famous for its spectacular setting. Nestled beside Simpson Harbour, the township is surrounded by six volcanoes , one of which, Mt Tavurvur, is still active today. The most recent major volcanic eruption was in September 1994 when Tavurvur and Vulcan covered much of Rabaul and surrounding villages with volcanic ash. This eruption saw the growth of the nearby coastal town of Kokopo which has now become the administrative and tourism centre for Rabaul. Join your expedition team for a tour by local transport to see Mt Tavurvur, the Volcano Observatory and various significant sites from World War II.

March 4, 2026   March 5, 2026 - At sea

Arrival 3/4/2026 Departure 3/5/2026

Chuuk (ex Truk)

March 6, 2026 - Chuuk (ex Truk)

Arrival 3/6/2026 Departure 3/6/2026

Chuuk Lagoon, previously known as Truk Lagoon, is one of the four states of the Federated States of Micronesia. The 16 much-eroded volcanic islands within the lagoon have mangrove swamps along their coasts with rich rainforests in the central mountainous areas. The islands are hugely popular with scuba divers thanks to the incredibly interesting shipwrecks: at depths of 15 to 40 metres, divers can explore a veritable underwater museum of wrecks from the Japanese land-based, aerial and naval fleet bombarded by the Americans in February 1944 in retaliation for the attack on Pearl Harbour. These shipwrecks have become foundations for new reef growth and extraordinary marine fauna.

Pulap Island

March 7, 2026 - Pulap Island

Arrival 3/7/2026 Departure 3/7/2026

Pulap is an atoll consisting of three islands located in the Pattiw group in the Caroline Islands . The three islands are, Pollap in the north, Tamatam in the south, and Fanadik at the western fringe of the reef. The island is surrounded by a number of ghostly shipwrecks that are virtually intact, submerged underwater. This makes for great diving expeditions where you can explore the reef and its incredible marine life as well as the shipwrecks.

Lamotrek Atoll

March 8, 2026 - Lamotrek Atoll

Arrival 3/8/2026 Departure 3/8/2026

Like a green piece of confetti floating in the middle of the Northern Pacific, the coral atoll of Lamotrek will appear before you like a dazzling gem set in a remarkable and stunning showcase. Belonging to the vast archipelago of the Caroline Islands, this small slice of paradise and its charming neighbours are home to one of the widest varieties of coral and tropical fish species in the world, making it an idyllic destination for marine life enthusiasts. Beyond the stretches of immaculate, white-sand beach, the dream continues. Off in the distance can be heard the captivating sounds of traditional songs sung by some 300 islanders who still live here, resonating in this unparalleled natural environment blending unspoiled vegetation and vast, heavenly ribbons of sand.

Ifalik Atoll

March 9, 2026 - Ifalik Atoll

Arrival 3/9/2026 Departure 3/9/2026

The Ifalik coral atoll, lying in the warm waters of the North Pacific, in the vast Caroline Island archipelago, is an invitation to serenity, enchantment and discovery. A veritable hidden paradise edged with magnificent beaches with expanses of fine sand, Ifalik will reveal its treasures to you. Between the sumptuous underwater scenery, rich biodiversity, ancestral traditions and warm and welcoming inhabitants, you will marvel at this lush environment, unlike anywhere else, and far from the frenzy of any town.

March 10, 2026 - At sea

Arrival 3/10/2026 Departure 3/10/2026

Guam

March 11, 2026 - Guam

Arrival 3/11/2026 early morning Disembarkation 3/11/2026 at 8:00 AM

In the Western Pacific, you will call at Guam , the largest volcanic island of Micronesia and the Mariana Islands . Here, the crystal-clear waters and white sandy beaches create a picture-postcard setting, ideal for relaxation and a break from it all. This little-known island, today under the administration of the United States, also offers you the opportunity to visit a number of historical sites, vestiges of Spanish colonisation, and to discover the culture of the Chamorros , the first inhabitants of the islands, talented craftspeople who have preserved their traditions.

Like Le Boréal and L’Austral , the two sister ships that preceded it, Le Soléal further reaffirms PONANT's signature approach: to take passengers to the farthest reaches of the planet onboard modern ships offering top-of-the-range services.

An elegant appearance and refined interior design combine with cutting-edge technology to offer a new type of cruising: adventure in a luxury setting.  

Ponant ship LE SOLÉAL - Deck 2

Find out more about Le Soléal

Explore the planet’s most remote tropical regions during a PONANT expedition cruise. In the heart of Oceania’s archipelagos or the Indian Ocean atolls, along the wild coastlines of Central America or Australia, our luxury amenities and services will make your expedition cruise an unforgettable experience. Our expedition leaders and their teams of naturalist guides devise exceptional itineraries and organise daily outings, shore visits in Zodiac dinghies, or snorkelling when the cruises are conducive to it, to take you as close as possible to nature. Aboard the ship, they share their knowledge during lectures on a variety of topics such as the fauna and flora, the history of the great explorations, geology and climatology. On land, using the local transport options or during hikes, discover the must-see natural sites and, for a few hours, partake in the life and ancestral customs of the local populations.

FREE SINGLE SUPPLEMENT *

*The supplement for single usage of a double cabin is waived, according to availability and staterooms categories.

During an introduction to scuba diving or a more advanced dive for holders of the necessary certifications (level 1 on yachting cruises and 2 on expedition cruises), explore the planet’s most beautiful underwater environments in the company of a PONANT diving instructor, as well as a local instructor when required by local legislation. They will ensure that your dives are conducted smoothly and safely: supervision of four certified divers at a time, evaluation of diving skills and experience, adherence to safety stops, zones and the maximum depth authorised.

A recent medical certificate (less than 12 months) must be presented at the beginning of the cruise to the main diving instructor.

Shore excursions, Pre/Post & Overlands

RELAX AND DISCOVER NOUMEA (1 NIGHT)

2/21/2026 - RELAX AND DISCOVER NOUMEA (1 NIGHT)

CALEDONIAN

2/18/2026 - CALEDONIAN "BROUSSE" IMMERSION (4NIGHTS)

DISCOVER GUAM ISLAND AND NIGHT IN SEOUL AIRPORT (1 NIGHT)

3/11/2026 - DISCOVER GUAM ISLAND AND NIGHT IN SEOUL AIRPORT (1 NIGHT)

RELAX AND DISCOVER NOUMEA (1 NIGHT)

RELAX AND DISCOVER NOUMEA (1 NIGHT)

Enhance your cruise and extend your trip with a carefully designed programme.

Enjoy a relaxing interlude in an idyllic resort lined with a beautiful white sandy beach and discover the Kanak culture on a half-day tour. This programme will be a pleasant prelude to your cruise.

Day 1 - Noumea

Meet at the airport in the Arrival hall. Look for PONANT sign. You will be greeted by our local representative off the flight selected by PONANT or any other flight (provided that you have previously communicated your flight schedule to your travel agent).

You will depart the airport by coach and be directly transferred to Le Méridien Noumea Resort & Spa 5* for check-in.

Rooms availables upon check-in. Day and dinner at leisure.

Day 2 - Noumea

The morning is at leisure to relax and enjoy the hotel’s facilities.

You will complete the hotel's departure formalities. The official check-out time is 12:00 noon.

After lunch served at the hotel, you will depart for a half-day tour to discover the treasures of Noumea.

You will first travel to Ouen Toro hill and its lookout point. This hill was one of the advance positions of the Americans during the Second World War. The American armed forces placed a battery of cannons on the site, in order to push back any attack by the Japanese, should they manage to reach New Caledonia. The cannons are still there and the lookout offers a spectacular view over Noumea lagoon, at 24,000 km² one of the largest in the world and closed by a coral reef that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as well as the bays and beaches below. Your visit will continue to the Côte Blanche, which is very popular with walkers.

Then you will head to the Tjibaou Cultural Centre which acts as an exhibition centre, multimedia lending library and museum of Kanak culture. Designed by Renzo Piano (winner of the 1998 Pritzker Prize), the building offers a harmonious blend of traditional and modern architecture. The centre is home to a unique collection spanning the arts, customs and history of the Kanaks and the South Pacific in general.  Along the “Kanak Way”, you will discover the secrets of the plants, customs and traditions of Kanak villages and other regions of the South Pacific.

You will then go to the New Caledonia Maritime Museum, via the city centre. Your route will take you through the neighbourhood of Faubourg Blanchot, one of the oldest in Noumea. It has preserved a number of small colonial-style wooden houses, a testimony to the city’s history. You will cross the main square, known as the Place des Cocotiers. This square is in fact a park made up of four squares, Place Feuillet, with its famous colonial-style bandstand, Place Courbet which boasts the Fontaine Céleste in its centre, Place Marne with its lively occasional market and Place Orly, known for its café and its small lake.

The Maritime Museum has been entirely renovated and showcases the rich maritime heritage of New Caledonia, from traditional navigation to the presence of the Americans. It presents a collection of archaeological objects recovered from the wrecks of great sailors such as Lapérouse, which tells the story of Caledonian trade.

After this visit, you will be transferred to the pier for embarkation.

Your hotel:

Le Méridien Noumea Resort & Spa is a unique blend of French sophistication and warm Pacific island ambience. Located on the beachfront overlooking Anse Vata bay, it is nestled in the heart of the tropical landscaped gardens with direct access to the beach, in front of the Grand Casino. You can take advantage of the hotel’s many services: restaurants, bars, outdoor swimming pool, jacuzzi, fitness centre and a spa. You will also find at your disposal a 24-hour room service.

Upgraded rooms are also available depending on availability and on a supplement basis. Contact your travel professional for further detail.

Your programme includes:

  • 1-night accommodation in Classic Garden view room at Le Méridien Noumea Resort & Spa 5* local standard (or similar), breakfast included. 
  • Meals as mentioned in the programme.
  • Beverages package during lunch (1 mineral water + 1 glass of wine + 1 coffee or tea).
  • Transfers and visits as mentioned in the programme.
  • Services of a local English-speaking guide for the half-day tour.

Your programme does not include:

  • Dinner on day 1.
  • Late check-out at the hotel.
  • Tips for the driver and local guide.
  • All personal expenses and other services not mentioned in the programme.
  • It is imperative that the details of your departure flight are provided to your travel agent, no later than 30 days before the start date of your cruise, to secure the proper private transfer.
  • The official check-out time at the hotel is 12:00 noon.
  • We recommend that you wear comfortable walking shoes for the tour.
  • The use of camera and video is not allowed inside the Tjibaou Cultural Centre. We recommend that you bring some insect repellent as some paths at the Tjibaou centre are close to the mangrove.
  • Some of the sites visited on this tour are sacred lands for the island’s inhabitants. Please respect the local customs and traditions.

Contact of your hotel:

Le Méridien Noumea BP1915 98846 Noumea Cedex, New-Caledonia Telephone: +687 26 50 00

Duration and order of the visits may vary. To know your PONANT flight schedule, please contact your travel agent; it is also indicated on your electronic ticket included in your travel documents.

Total : $1,000

CALEDONIAN "BROUSSE" IMMERSION (4NIGHTS)

CALEDONIAN

Day 1 - Nouméa

You will be met by our local representative at Nouméa airport on arrival of the flight selected by PONANT or any other chosen departure flight, subject to prior communication with your consultant. Approx. 50-minute transfer from the airport to Le Méridien Nouméa Resort & Spa 4*.

Day 2 - Nouméa / Bourail

After breakfast, visit the Djibaou cultural center, dedicated to promoting Kanak culture. Built to the designs of the famous architect Renzo Piano, it is a major landmark in New Caledonia, as a museum, research and creative center, media library and botanical park, where you can learn about the importance of plants in Kanak society. You'll then have lunch in a local restaurant. In the afternoon, you'll head for the Bourail region, where you'll stay at the Sheraton Deva 4*, a haven of peace overlooking the coral reef in a beautiful green setting. Dinner and overnight stay at the hotel.

Day 3 - Bourail

After breakfast, you'll set off on a tour of the Parc Provincial des Grandes Fougères, home to many varieties of tree ferns up to 20m tall, as well as over 500 endemic plant species. You'll learn more about the various traditional medicinal plants and bird species found here. You can also

You'll then head to an authentic traditional Caldoche farm, where you can enjoy a typical Broussard barbecue before returning to your hotel for dinner and overnight stay at the hotel.

Day 4 - Bourail / Nouméa

After breakfast, you'll head for the Roche Percée, a peninsula stretching from the Bonhomme de Bourail to the mouth of the Nera. Popular with photographers and surfers, you'll be able to admire its beach of volcanic sand from Vanuatu, as well as the Bonhomme, adjoining the Roche Percée cliff, a famous quartz rock sculpted by the waves into the shape of a leaning man, called Boué Taoué in Kanak. Lunch at a local restaurant before returning to your hotel in Nouméa. Return to your hotel for dinner and overnight.

Day 5 - Nouméa

After breakfast, you'll head off on an excursion to the 22,000-hectare Rivière Bleue Provincial Park. The park is home to New Caledonia's largest population of wild cagous, the emblem of the island. Alongside an ornithologist guide, you'll be able to observe a wide variety of plants and endemic species. After a picnic lunch, you will then be transferred to the pier for embarkation.

Your hotels :

Overlooking Anse Vata Bay, Le Méridien Nouméa Resort & Spa 4* features an outdoor pool and tennis court, gym, sauna and hammam. Spacious rooms feature air conditioning, minibar and tea and coffee-making facilities. Each accommodation includes a bathroom with bath, hairdryer and toiletries.

Overlooking the coral reef and surrounded by greenery, the Sheraton Deva 4* is a true haven of peace where you can enjoy a Spa, an infinity pool, sports facilities and a majestic ocean view.

Superior rooms are also available subject to availability and extra charge. Contact your travel agent for details.

Your program includes :

  • 2 nights in a Superieure ocean-view room, local standards (or similar), breakfast included, at the Méridien Nouméa Resort&Spa 4*.
  • 2 nights in a Bungalow ocean view room at the Sheraton Deva de Bourail 4* local standards (or similar), breakfast included.
  • Meals mentioned in the program
  • Drinks with meals (mineral water + 1 glass of wine or 1 local beer or 1 soft drink + 1 coffee or tea).
  • Transfers, guided tours and entrance fees for monuments mentioned in the program.
  • Services of a local English-speaking guide.

Your program does not include

  • Dinner on Day 1.
  • Personal expenses.
  • Visa fees, if required.
  • Tips to guide and driver.
  • Early check-in and late check-out.
  • Other services not mentioned in the program.

Please note :

If you have chosen a flight other than the one selected by PONANT: in order to book your transfer from the airport to the hotel, it is imperative that the details of your departure flight are communicated to your consultant, at the latest 30 days before the start date of your cruise. This program is not suitable for people with reduced mobility. If you wish to stay in your room before the official check-in time or after the official check-out time, you can make a request to the hotel, subject to availability.

The duration and order of visits are given for information only and are subject to change. To find out the times of your PONANT flight, please contact your consultant, or refer to the electronic ticket enclosed in your travel pack.

Total : $4,700

DISCOVER GUAM ISLAND AND NIGHT IN SEOUL AIRPORT (1 NIGHT)

DISCOVER GUAM ISLAND AND NIGHT IN SEOUL AIRPORT (1 NIGHT)

Travel with peace of mind as PONANT organises your transfer between your port of embarkation and the airport and your transit in Seoul.

Day 1 - Guam / Seoul

After disembarkation procedures are completed, you will be greeted at the port by our local English-speaking representative.

Depart the pier with your english speaking guide for a sightseeing tour of the island. Located in the heart of the Western Pacific, Guam is an island territory of the United States, the largest of the Mariana and Micronesian islands.

Discover the Guam hospitality, the "Hafa Adai" spirit and some beautiful landscapes. Also behind the postcard, learn about the unique and complex millennial cultural history which has spanned from the period of Ancient Chamorro civilization, and the Spanish Magellan expedition to the American period and the Japanese occupation.

Start your panoramic tour at T.Stell Newman Visitor and War in the Pacific National Park Center, a former battlefield to commemorate World War II. Continue your visit at Fort Apugan, the only Spanish fort on the island from where you will enjoy a unique view of Guam. Walk to Latte Stone Park, and Dulce Nomble De Maria Basilica Cathedral located on Skinner’s Plaza, the governor’s palace during the Spanish occupation.

Then proceed up to the high cliff at the northern end of Tumon Bay which rises 368 feet from the reef and offers views of both the western and eastern sides of the island.There at Two Lover’s Point, one of the Guam's most iconic attractions, let you tell the famous and romantic legend of Guam.

Lunch will be served at a local restaurant (chineese buffet style).

After lunch, resume sightseeing to the scenic south Island visiting Inarajan National Pool, Mrizo, Fort Soledad Magellan Monument and Talifak Bridge.

You will then be transferred to the airport in time for check-in of the PONANT selected flight.

Flight Guam / Seoul.

You will be greeted at Incheon International Airport (Seoul) by our local representative and transferred to the Grand Hyatt Incheon Hotel 5*.

Check-in in your room.

Dinner at leisure.

Day 2 – Seoul

After hotel check-out, you will be transferred to Incheon International Airport in connection with PONANT selected flight.

Close to Incheon International Airport, the Grand Hyatt Incheon Hotel offers quality accommodation. Rooms are located in the newest part of the hotel, the West Tower. Here you will enjoy modern facilities with a contemporary décor, comfortable rooms and elegant granite bath. The hotel has a swimming pool, sauna and fitness room. All West Tower guest bedrooms and public areas are smoke-free zones.

  • 1-night accommodation in Deluxe room, at the Grand Hyatt Incheon Hotel 5* (or similar) including breakfast.
  • Beverages package during meals (mineral water + 1 soft drink or 1 local beverage + 1 coffee or tea).
  • The services of a local English-speaking guide in Guam.
  • The services of a local English-speaking escort in Seoul.
  • International flight Guam / Seoul.
  • Tips for the driver, the guide and the escort.
  • Early check-in or late check-out might be available depending on availability and on a supplement basis.
  • Other services not mentioned in the programme.

Grand Hyatt Incheon Hotel 208 Yeongjong haennam-ro, 321 Beon-gil Unseo-dong, Jung-gu Incheon, 22382 - South Korea Telephone: +82 32 745 1234

Total : $930

IMAGES

  1. Noumea Travel Guide by SIVARAMAKRISHNA T

    noumea travel guide book

  2. Travel Local Map Noumea

    noumea travel guide book

  3. The Ultimate Travel Guide to Nouméa, New Caledonia

    noumea travel guide book

  4. Capitale de la Nouvelle-Calédonie, Nouméa est située au sud de l’île

    noumea travel guide book

  5. Noumea Travel Guide by SIVARAMAKRISHNA T

    noumea travel guide book

  6. Noumea Travel Guide

    noumea travel guide book

VIDEO

  1. " KAVA Faka HAU "

  2. P&O Experiences: Tree to Tree Adventure, Noumea, New Caledonia

  3. Welcome to the Roche Percée and Turtle Bay, two iconic beaches in Bourail, #NewCaledonia 🌊🐢

  4. Fruits, fish, flowers… everything you're looking for is at the Moselle Market 🍍🐠🌸 #NewCaledonia

  5. Walking around the City of Noumea

  6. Amedee island , Noumea . Shore tour from the Carnival Luminosa 2023

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    Le Méridien Noumea BP1915 98846 Noumea Cedex, New-Caledonia Telephone: +687 26 50 00 Duration and order of the visits may vary. To know your PONANT flight schedule, please contact your travel agent; it is also indicated on your electronic ticket included in your travel documents.