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Aurora Explorer

We at Far & Away Adventures give you an opportunity to travel to the beautiful destinations of coastal British Columbia and enjoy the convenience of the M.V. Aurora Explorer.
This modern craft impresses with its power and amazing facilities. The craft is able to transport general freight as well as heavy equipment. The coastal British Columbia is home to hundreds of small islands. Regular trips to coastal locations last up to 5 days. The tour has a lot to offer to travelers. During your travel you’ll be able to visit a variety of coastal locations and enjoy a lot of interesting activities.
While staying on the ship you’ll observe ship’s crew at work and will have time to play interesting games. You’ll be able to see different types of whales as well as beautiful marine species of the sea and magnificent glaciers. Travelers can go ashore in order to enjoy wild beauty, picnics, barbeques and see tide pools in a hidden bay.

Coastal British Columbia has a rich and interesting history. Cannery workers, explorers as well as settlers have their impact on the life of coastal locations. While exploring the coast you’ll manage to dig deeper into the history of native populations.

Logging Camp

About The Aurora Explorer Canadian Coastal Freighter

Your journey will begin at the craft’s base that is located in Menzies Bay. The ship has everything that’s needed for a comfortable and safe travel. Passengers are provided with bridge deck lounge, a dining lounge and lower deck lounge. The vessel comes with an outside observation desk. So, you’ll find it easy to enjoy beautiful views of the sea, expose themselves to sunlight and breathe salt air during your trip.
Passengers can make sure that all safety measures have been taken. The vessel has all the necessary safety equipment. The equipment has been approved by Transport Canada’s Marine Safety Directorate.
Passengers can enjoy the convenience of vessel’s accommodations. The ship offers 3 Premium staterooms, 2 Select staterooms as well as 1 Standard stateroom. Premium staterooms come with twin beds. Select rooms are smaller than Premium staterooms. Standard staterooms are organized in bunk-bed style. Additionally, passengers have the access to shared facilities such as 4 shared washrooms as well as 2 shower rooms on the accommodation desk and 2 shared washrooms on the gallery desk.
Far & Away Adventures has been providing marine tours for many years. We give travelers a unique opportunity to explore the remote inlets of Johnstone and Queen Charlotte Straits. If you take advantage of boat cruise vacations, you’ll be able to visit multiple coastal locations and see beautiful coastal views as well as diverse marine wildlife and enjoy unforgettable adventures.

Your Cruise On The Aurora Explorer

Far & Away Adventures is committed to the best possible customer experience when you book passage on the Aurora Explorer. Once you arrive to the base, you’ll receive a good welcome! Your bags will be collected from your vehicle and loaded onto the ship. Then, you will be briefed with more details on the route and provide you with safety tips.

The ship’s base is located at Menzies Bay. This is the place where the voyage begins. This base is about 15 km north of Campbell River, BC, Canada.

The Aurora Explorer is capable of transporting 12 passengers and fully equipped to provide them with everything they need during a trip. The ship has the observation desk that makes it possible for travelers to observe rugged islands.

A voyage takes 3 – 5 days. You’ll visit multiple locations and have several stops during a trip. While traveling you may see whales as well as bears, mountain goats and other types of wildlife.
There are two routes available for travelers. You can either go to the East coast of Northern Vancouver Island or explore the waters in the East of Central Vancouver Island.

You’ll definitely like food served during a trip. Meals prepared by the ship’s cook are delicious and portions are generous. You won’t feel hungry during a trip!

It’s worth noting that every time the route is different. The route depends on cargo and shipment deliveries ordered by other companies and locations where a ship needs to stop during a cruise voyage.

These marine tours are available from May to October. During the cruise of coastal British Columbia, you’ll get an opportunity to try something new, discover remote locations that only a few people visit and, most importantly, experience a unique travel experience!

Route 1 - Broughton Island Archipelago Area

Once the journey begins, the ship will depart from Menzies Bay and go to the northern part of British Columbia. During your trip you’ll see isolated villages and camps. The ship will go through Seymour Narrows, Discovery Passage and Johnstone Strait.

Your route will go through the numerous channels and islands that form the Broughton Archipelago. Plus, you’ll be able to see Chatham Channel as well as pass Minstrel Island on your way.

The route mainly depends on freight deliveries. Actually, the route will be created based on freight available at the time of sailing.

During the tour, the ship may stop in such places as Knight Inlet, Kingcome Inlet, Wakeman Sound, Mackenzie Sound and Drury Inlet.

Knight Inlet is one of the most beautiful and largest coastal fjords in British Columbia. Here, you’ll be able to enjoy the most spectacular views of the nature.
Sometimes, the ship goes through the so called past Cascade Head. If you visit this magnificent place, you’ll be able to see a waterfall that’s located about 800 feet over the ocean.
You’ll also see granite ledges and towering granite cliffs near the shore, magnificent hanging valleys as well as numerous river deltas. The wildlife in this area is abundant. It’s one of the places on the Earth where you can watch how grizzly bears as well as black bears are hunting and trying to catch a salmon in the river.
If you are lucky enough to go through the more distant and isolated Seymour Inlet system during your cruise, you’ll be able to see lots of interesting places. Such places as Schooner Channel, Slingsby Channel, Nakwakto Rapids and Tremble Island will be included in your route. On your way back home, the ship will stop in the villages of Mamalilaculla and Karlukwees. It’s worth noting that this place has a rich and interesting history.
At the end of your sailing route, the ship will stop in Yorke Island. It’s important to know that artillery defenses were housed in this historic place during the Second World War. And of course, you’ll have a great opportunity to explore the history of this site.
The destination impresses with its unusual natural beauty and diverse wildlife. While traveling on the Aurora Explorer, you’ll see different species of whales, porpoises, sea lions, eagles as well as seals.
Aurora Explorer Cabin
DSC_0141 copy

Route 2 - Discovery Islands

Once the journey begins, the ship will depart from Menzies Bay and go to Seymour Narrows. You’ll be able to see the legendary Ripple Rock on your way. After that, the ship will get to Discovery Passage and your route will go through numerous islands and mainland inlets.
Among the places where the Aurora Explorer may stop are: Blind Channel, Cordero Channel, Loughborough Inlet, Sonora Island, Stuart Island as well as Phillips Arm.
Your route may also include Bute Inlet. In this case, you’ll be able to see Homathko River and the Southgate River as well as Waddington Harbour.
The tour itself is very spectacular. During your cruise you’ll be able to see steep granite bluffs, numerous hanging valleys, cascading waterfalls, mountains and more.
The route may also include a stop at the Orford River. This place is very unique and here you can watch how the Grizzly Bears are hunting when the salmon are running in the river.
Oftentimes, the ship’s route includes such places as the Desolation Sound area, Copeland Islands, Hernando Island, Mansons Landing, Mittlenatch Island, Savary Island, Spilsbury Point, Teakerne Arm and Toba Inlet. When returning back home you may also visit Campbell River.
Passengers need to know that the Aurora Explorer is a working boat and its main responsibility is to deliver freight. That’s why its route and schedule depends on deliveries of freight. Weather conditions also have an impact on the ship’s operation. Each situation is unique. That means that sometimes passengers may not be able to enjoy sightseeing as well as recreational activities during the cruise.

Weather Conditions

Cruises begin from March and last until October. Each time of the year has its own pros and cons for travelers.

If you choose to travel in March, April or May you must be prepared to experience some small inconveniences. The weather is cooler in this time of the year. On the other hand, you’ll not have to deal with bugs. Snowcaps and waterfalls are particularly beautiful in the spring.

June is known for its warmer weather. Days are longer and provide more sunlight in June. However, it can be foggy and wet.
If you would like to see spotting whales and porpoises during your tour, then we would recommend you to plan a freight boat cruise between July and August.
The nature is usually very beautiful and weather is warmer in September.

Would you like to enjoy the colors of autumn? If so, take a boat tour in October. However, the weather can be cold.

Aurora Explorer

The Aurora Explorer is a 135 foot landing craft with all the necessary facilities. The ship’s base is located in Menzies Bay near Campbell River where all cruises start and finish.

The Aurora Explorer is capable to transport different types of heavy equipment as well as general freight. The craft operates in the Gulf of Georgia, Johnstone-Queen Charlotte Straits and in other areas which are connected to mainland inlets.
The ship has all the necessary safety equipment that has been approved by Canada Steamship Inspection. It’s also important to note that each member of ship’s crew is certified by the Canadian Coast Guard.
The Aurora Explorer consists of three sections: Passenger Accommodation Desk, Gallery Desk as well as Wheelhouse Deck. Among ship’s components are: gallery, Promenade decks, Premium staterooms, Select staterooms, Standard staterooms, lounges as well as washrooms, showers and crew areas. Vessel’s facilities also include 6 shared washrooms, 3 shower rooms as well as a washer/dryer.

The ship is capable of transferring 12 passengers as well as 6 crew members. It’s important to know that the craft’s passenger accommodations were upgraded in winter 2012/13. Nowadays, the Aurora Explorer offers 1 stateroom with bunk-beds and 5 staterooms in twin bed configurations.

Passengers can join the Aurora Explorer during regular freight voyages that begin in late March and end in October. During the trips passengers will be able to visit multiple coastal locations. Boat tours last 5 days.

It’s fair to say that the Aurora Explorer has been built with passenger comfort in mind. Accommodations are comfortable. The ship comes with an upper lounge and lower lounge where passengers can enjoy beautiful views of the sea. The ship also has a library where passengers can learn the history of coastal B.C. Passengers can also take advantage of a satellite telephone and cellular connection.

It’s important to note that the Aurora Explorer is a working freight boat, but not a luxurious craft. So, passengers must be prepared for some kind of inconveniences and restrictions. There are no elevators on the ship. Passengers use two steep stairways. Smoking is allowed only in certain areas of the vessel. Some passengers find it difficult to sleep at the beginning of a trip because of ship’s operational noise and vibration.

Passengers can enjoy the sunshine and breathe salt air on ship’s outdoor observation desk and lounge areas. During the trip, the ship can stop to catch fish (such as halibut, groundfish or salmon) or fresh prawns. Sometimes, the ship’s cook prepares crabs for passengers.

Enjoy rugged coastal scenery and the solitude of nature in a marine environment. See numerous tidal rapids where the sea becomes a fast flowing river that boils around the vessel.

Become part of an actual working freight vessel. Experience the ambiance of small group cruising. The Aurora Explorer can carry up to 12 passengers and a crew of six. Listen as the crew works the radio telephones or navigates the ship by radar. Watch as heavy equipment rolls on board and see freight of all types discharged at the many stops along the way.

Savour the history and influence of the early explorers, settlers, cannery workers and native populations as you pass such places as Bute Inlet, Hernando Island, Hole-in-the-Wall, Yucalta Rapids, Waddington Harbour, Sullivan Bay, Kingcome Inlet, Deep Sea Bluff, Echo Bay, Broughton Archipelago, Yorke Island, Chatham Channel, Burial Cove and the Homathko Icefield.

Watch as schools of dolphin play in front of the vessel’s bow or the occasional black bear or deer roams the passing shoreline. Relish the unique opportunity to observe killer whales, seals, sea lions, bald eagles and a host of sea birds in their natural surroundings.
Accommodations aboard the Aurora Explorer are comfortable, but not luxurious. The vessel offers a dining lounge, lower deck lounge and bridge deck lounge for passenger comfort and viewing. There is a nautical and history library of coastal BC on board. There are also outside observation decks where passengers can observe activity on the freight deck, enjoy the passing scenery or simply lie back and soak up the sunshine and salt air. All staterooms are double occupancy, have opening windows & utilize shared washroom & shower facilities which are kept immaculately clean at all times.

We Offer 2 Options for Staterooms

While exploring the working coast, we will make your experience as “all inclusive” as possible. Your will enjoy fabulous meals, incredible scenery along with abundant wildlife and marine life. You will visit remote villages, working logging camps, fishing lodges, destination resorts and meet many of British Columbia’s truly unique “characters” that work and live in coastal BC. The is what we call “Aurora’s Coast”.
The ship’s chef will do all menu and food preparation. A three-course dinner will be provided with a selection of wines. An alternate dinner entrée may be arranged with advance notice to the cook. Breakfast will begin with a continental offering followed by a full hot breakfast. Lunch is “buffet style” served mid day usually including homemade soup.
Wine is served with the evening meal and Beer and Cider (and some snacks) are offered around mid-afternoon. Guests are welcome to bring additional beverages onboard if they choose. A full range of soft drinks and juices are provided on board.

Cruise Routing – M.V. AURORA EXPLORER

As the Aurora Explorer is an actual working freight boat, delivery of freight and the securing of additional freight opportunities will dictate the routing and the timetable of the vessel. While every effort is made to provide time in the schedule for our guests to disembark from the vessel for sightseeing, exploring or other recreational functions such stops are not guaranteed. The actual routing of the vessel may vary from that advertised, depending on freight opportunity. Conditions of Carriage apply. Please refer to the reverse side of the cruise application form that will be mailed to persons making a booking.


Check Pricing, Schedule and Availability

Persons making a booking will receive the following additional information:

Once the final payment is made (75 days prior to sailing), passengers will receive the following information:

Celebrate with friends

Share a cruise with a special person or group of friends. We’ll help to make it a memorable occasion. Perhaps plan to be aboard for your Birthday or Anniversary and celebrate with us. Marine Link Tours can supply gift certificates to put under the tree at Christmas or for a special occasion.

Whole vessel charter

Bring your friends and family.
If you know someone who might like to join one of our cruises, let us know and we can send them more information.

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