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Lapita Voyage - in polynesischen Booten - nach polynesischer Navigation
Lapita Voyage
Itinerary of the 4,000NM long and six months lasting expedition

Itinerary of the 4,000NM long and six months lasting expedition


The complete crew at a Christmas party in Jayapura, Indonesia


The complete crew at a Christmas party in Jayapura, Indonesia



One of the two Wharam-designed traditional Polynesian catamarans


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Lapita Voyage (2008-2009) was the first sailing expedition that successfully followed a possible migration route of the ancient Polynesians out of SE Asia.

Starting in the Philippines, passing through the Molucca Islands, following the north side of the second biggest island on earth, New Guinea, sailing through the archipelago of the Solomon Islands and ending far in the east on the remote islands of Tikopia and Anuta we followed the trail of archaeological ‘Lapita pottery’ sites.  

» Accompanied by scientists/experts with an interest in the migration of people from South-East Asia into the Central Pacific.

» Sailing in two double canoes/catamarans built using an original Polynesian canoe hullshape (traditional to Anuta and Tikopia for hundreds of years).

» Travelling 4,000 nautical miles without engine from November 2008 to March 2009 (equivalent to travelling from Berlin to Rio de Janeiro).

» Sailing without a professional crew, but with people with little sea experience.

» Arriving on the islands of Tikopia and Anuta the two boats were presented to the inhabitants.

» Despite bad weather (daily squalls and rain) during the entire voyage, the boats arrived safely and we fulfilled all our set objectives.

» On both islands people celebrated the arrival of the gifted boats in traditional manner with dancing and singing and with a Christian blessing. The festivities were one of the highlights of the entire voyage.

» The islanders easily learned how to handle the boats as they still have sailing and traditional navigation knowledge. With the boats they are planning longer sea travels like their ancestors have done for thousand of years up to the time when Western Colonial administrators of the Pacific islands forbade their subjects offshore sailing in their native craft in order to get control over them.

Lapita Voyage Logs

Follow the entire voyage and the many interesting encounters and discoveries experienced by the crew with this collection of logs, dating from the launching of the boats right up to the arrival at their final destination at Tikopia and Anuta.

Read the Lapita Voyage logs

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Copyright © 2009 Klaus Hympendahl. All rights reserved.