Paul Gauguin Cruise Review by subscrip: Very Disappointed except for the Eclipse!
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Very Disappointed except for the Eclipse!
We took this trip so that we could view the Eclipse from a favorable spot in the middle of the Pacific. That part of the trip was fantastic, as were the on board Enrichment Lectures given by Rick Fienberg, Holly Gilbert and Mark Eddowes.
Unfortunately, the crew of the PG seemed completely unfamiliar with the western Pacific port stops (New Caledonia and Vanuatu). These were poorly organized and information was inaccurate or lacking for anyone not interested in taking one of the paid tours. We generally explore areas on our own and were told, for instance, on Mare that there would be shuttles running all day every 20 minutes to a snorkeling beach. The shuttles stopped running around 1 pm and people began to get fearful they would be stranded. The original itinerary indicated we would stop in We on Lifou and instead we ended up in Easo on the other side of the island. The cruise director said that "cars were available for rental" where we were putting in, yet there were no More cars, only "guides" who would take you to the local grocery store in the village and then to a beach to swim for an hour. In Port Vila, Vanuatu, we were told by the PG staff that the ferry to Iririki Island was free but it was not.
Since our primary interest was in the Eclipse, we wish the cruise had cut out some of the extra days at sea by perhaps sailing from/to Noumea, New Caledonia, making it only 7 instead 10 very expensive days.
There was a single younger woman working in reception who was kind; the other two ladies we encountered could only be described as surly.
The wait staff in the restaurants were excellent, as were the stewardesses. The food and wines were okay.
However, the relative disorganization of the port stops and the disembarkation process this morning, coupled with the attitude of the reception staff makes it highly unlikely we will ever sail with PG again. Less
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