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Le Lyrial (Ponant) Review

-- / 5.0
Editor Rating
48 reviews
2 Awards
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Editor Rating
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Dori Saltzman
Cruise Critic Contributor

Le Lyrial is one of four sister ships in the fleet of Ponant, a French luxury expedition cruise line. The ship holds just 264 people, but manages to pack a lot into a small space, including a full-service spa, fitness center and a heated swimming pool.


Elegantly appointed ship with excellent service and relaxed vibe


Unless you're in a suite, cabins are too small; strange bathroom layout

Bottom Line

A beautiful small ship sailing destination-rich itineraries


Passengers : 264
Crew : 139
Passenger to Crew : 1.90:1
Launched : 2015
Shore Excursions : 360

The ship has a wonderfully calm vibe, with a sedate elegance and a marine-inspired decor. We particularly loved the primary atrium sculpture, which mimics whirling columns of fish.

Ponant is a French line and the service, food and entertainment onboard are French. Announcements are made in French first, dinner is served late, the cuisine is French-inspired and entertainment in the theater is cabaret style, while in the lounge the singers channel their inner Edith Piaf.

Le Lyrial sails primarily in Europe, South America and around Africa. When in Europe, it offers culturally rich itineraries throughout the Mediterranean. During the rest of the year, it sails expedition journeys to Antarctica, around the coast of South Africa and to the African islands (Seychelles, Madagascar, Mauritius, etc.). The onboard marina is stocked with kayaks and Zodiacs for use on these more exotic sailings.

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Fellow Passengers

Most passengers on a Le Lyrial cruise are French, with a smattering of cruisers from English speaking-countries (mostly U.K. and Australia) as well as other European countries and occasionally Asia. You might also find yourself on a sailing in which part of the ship has been chartered by an American tour operator (such as Tauck). Cruises during school holidays will attract young French families, though not in large numbers.

Le Lyrial (Ponant) Dress Code

During the day and especially on shore excursions, casual, comfortable clothing is the norm. Depending on your itinerary, specific clothing might be recommended (waterproof, wind-resistant pieces, hiking boots, etc.). In the evening, attire is at passengers' discretion, though jeans, T-shirts and flip-flops are not permitted in Le Celeste main dining room. On Gala Nights, cruisers are encouraged to dress up in their finest, but it's not required. Keep in mind, the French do tend to dress nicely for dinner.

The cruise fare is only slightly inclusive on Le Lyrial with just drinks (soft and alcoholic, but not premium brands) included in the price, as well as Wi-Fi. Shore excursions (with very few exceptions), laundry, tips and the spa are not included. The euro is the onboard currency.

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Find a Le Lyrial (Ponant) Cruise

More about Le Lyrial (Ponant)

Where does Le Lyrial (Ponant) sail from?

Le Lyrial (Ponant) departs from Ushuaia, Istanbul, Durban, Venice, Piraeus, Piraeus, Laviron, Barcelona, Cape Town and Palermo

How much does it cost to go on Le Lyrial (Ponant)?

Cruises on Le Lyrial (Ponant) start from null per person.

Is Le Lyrial (Ponant) a good ship to cruise on?

Le Lyrial (Ponant) won 2 awards over the years, including Best for Cabins and Best for Fitness & Recreation in 2019.
Le Lyrial (Ponant) Cruiser Reviews

Amazing family cruise onboard the Le Lyrial

We traveled with our kids 8 and 10 and just got home from an 8 night Mediterranean cruise onboard the Le Lyrial. We LOVED this ship.... Read More
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2-5 Cruises

Age 30s

Trip to Antarctica and South Georgia

We selected the Abercrombie and Kent-Ponant cruise to Antarctica, South Georgia and the Falklands for its relatively small size - 170 passengers - and the reputation of the expeditionary staff.... Read More
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2-5 Cruises

Age 60s

Luxurious and refined

The main reason we chose Ponant was because the entry level stateroom has a balcony which I think is essential.... Read More
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First Time Cruiser

Age 50s

Fantastic cruise with superb French food

The good thing about Ponant is the ship is small enough to visit quieter places. The few, French, children who were on board were beautifully behaved. It is not ideally a cruise for children though.... Read More
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10+ Cruises

Age 70s

Ponant Fleet
Le Ponant
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