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  • Jacques-Cartier.jpg - The 184-passenger Le Jacques Cartier is one of Ponant's new class of expedition vessels.

Le Jacques Cartier: Boutique expedition sailings from Ponant

Health advisory: Ponant requires all passengers and crew members 16 years of age and older to be vaccinated against COVID-19 before boarding. Guests and crew will also need to show proof of a negative PCR test carried out within 72 hours of boarding.


The 184-passenger Le Jacques Cartier expedition ship from Ponant debuted in July 2020 and offers a superior small-ship cruising experience, complete with stylish interior and exterior spaces, state-of-the-art technology aimed at sustainability, and boutique staterooms and comfortable suites with large windows and either a private balcony or terrace. Quality materials, relaxed colors and ocean views at every turn create an atmosphere of ease and adventure. 

 Jacques Cartier is a twin sister ship to Le Bellot, Le Champlain and Le Dumont D’Urville —Ponant's sixth ship in a series of vessels designed to venture to the most remote areas of the globe while offering guests an intimate, near-luxury experience.

On board, the ship offers welcoming indoor and outdoor lounge areas. But Le  Jacques Cartier especially shines where it counts more: in its special off-ship excursions, encounters with local cultures and regular open dialogue with expert naturalist guides.

Where Le Jacques Cartier sails

Le Jacques Cartier sails around the Mediterranean to popular ports including Athens, Marseille, Venice, Sicily, Barcelona, Malta and the Amalfi Coast.

Cruises on this ship


The ship's Panoramic Restaurant offers an elegant atmosphere for enjoying breakfast, lunch and dinner, indoors or out. Dishes feature both French and international gourmet cuisine, including local specialties. The Ducasse Conseil-trained chefs offer a distinctive main menu supplemented by custom menus for special diets and groups. A selection of salads, desserts, cheeses, fine wines, champagnes, beers and top-shelf liquors round out the culinary experience.

For similar dishes served in a less formal setting, the poolside Outdoor Grill Restaurant opens for every meal daily. Also found poolside is an outdoor bar and indoor solarium with armchairs and sofas.

The underwater lounge Blue Eye aboard Ponant’s new yachts.
Courtesy of PonantThe underwater lounge Blue Eye for close-up views of sea life.

Activities & amenities

Among the activities and amenities found on the ship:


Le Jacques Cartier’s Main Lounge and Panoramic Lounge both access an outside terrace and offer afternoon tea and specialty drinks for guests to discuss their day’s activities. In addition, the Main Lounge offers organized activities such as card games, live music and tastings centered around wine, spirits and specialty foods. The Panoramic Lounge’s library offers engaging reference materials and an Internet corner.

Blue Eye

Ponant's popular Blue Eye underwater lounge, down in the ship's hull offers a one-of-a-kind experience of immersion into the underwater world as it’s happening outside the ship. Whale’s eye windows show marine life outside the ship, while special underwater projectors bring those images inside. Hydrophones bring in the sounds of what’s being viewed, and vibrating acoustic waves within Body Listening sofas give a sense of touch.


Top-notch sound and lighting technology, including an LED wall, makes the 184-guest theater a popular gathering spot. Guests can enjoy a variety of performances, including  jazz and dance performances, karaoke, piano recitals and educational lectures.

Spa, sauna & gym

The Fitness Center on deck 7 offers a gym with terrific views of sea and land. Work out on state-of-the-art exercise machines, including ellipticals, stationary bikes, treadmills and a Kinesis wall. Maintain fitness with hosted workout, yoga and dance classes, or make use of the infinity pool’s counter-current swimming system. Guests can feel pampered with treatments at the SOTHYS Spa/Beauty Corner and its hair salon, two massage rooms, hammam (Moroccan steam spa), relaxation room and herbal tea bar.

Shore excursions & water sports

Le Jacques Cartier is designed for both refined leisure and adventure, with daily off-ship excursions. Its 10 Zodiacs enable guests to discover wildlife, explore coastlines and access shallow water areas. The ship’s hydraulic marine platform lowers into the water with an adjacent staircase, enabling easy access to her complement of Zodiacs, kayaks and stand-up paddleboards.

A Prestige Suite aboard Ponant’s Le Champlain.
Courtesy of Ponant CruisesA Prestige Suite aboard Ponant’s Le Jacques Cartier.


Cabin categories include a Deluxe Stateroom and Prestige Stateroom (both at 204 square feet), Deluxe Suite (291 square feet), Privilege Suite (344 square feet), Prestige Suite (409 square feet), and the Grand Deluxe and Owner's Suites (484 square feet).

All 92 staterooms and suites aboard Le Jacques Cartier offer the option of one king-size bed or two twin beds. Other common amenities include a private balcony, individually controlled air-conditioning, minibar, flat-screen satellite TV, desk with stationery, Ipod players, on-demand video, a safe, hair dryer, bathrobes, a 110/220-volt outlet, French bath products, 24-hour room service, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access and added-cost satellite direct-line telephone. Laundry and ironing service is available for a fee.

Sustainable travel

Le Jacques Cartier is a Bureau Veritas-certified “Clean Ship,” qualifying its as a worldwide leader in environmental travel. Carbon emissions have been reduced by 40% with silent electric propulsion technology. Add in an advanced GPS system and Le Jacques Cartier can remain in place without needing an anchor, helping protect the sea floor. The ship’s advanced filtration systems treat and recycle waste water and an onboard compactor saves items for later recycling back in port. Finally, its CFR and LED lighting uses only 10% of the electricity that older systems require.

The ship is fully compliant with the Americans With Disabilities Act, offering multiple elevators and lifts up and down stairways, accessible toilets in common areas and two accessible staterooms.

Fun fact

Each ship in the new expedition class pays homage to a famous French explorer — in this case, Jacques Cartier, the first European to describe and map the Gulf of Saint Lawrence in Canada. 

Your take

How about you? Are you planning to cruise on one of Ponant's new luxury expedition yachts? Let us know!

Interested in a cruise on this ship?

If you're interested in a cruise on Le Champlain, contact a Cruiseable travel advocate at 1-877-322-3773 or by email. You'll get a better deal than you can get by contacting the cruise line directly.


Cruiseable team
The Cruiseable editorial team consists of award-winning travel writers, cruise bloggers and journalists.

Fast facts

184 Passengers [?]
112 Crew
7 Decks
2020 Maiden voyage
9,976 Tonnage [?]
430 Length in feet
59 Width in feet (max beam)
14 Speed (mph) [?]

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