It was a last minute decision to take the above cruise, as part of my annual leave. I have held a fascination for cruise liners for some time, so it was a dream come true when I eventually got to travel to one of my favourite parts of Australia - Tasmania. For those who have never travelled to this part of the world, the best way I can describe it is that I think God created Tasmania first and then used the leftovers on the rest of Australia.
But let's get back to the cruise.
Due to the late arrival Into Sydney, the SP left 3 hours late. But to me this didn't really matter. Sailing out of Sydney in the early evening was simply awesome.
My balcony cabin on SP was on Caribe deck. To awake in the morning and open the balcony door before jumping back into bed to see the world gliding by is breathtaking. My first 3 mornings of the cruise I had breakfast on the balcony. My own little world of peace and serenity. Sublime. The next two mornings I dined in the Traviata Restaurant, while the final morning I ate in Horizon Court. Each venue was faultless.
As I was travelling alone, I didn't eat alone. I was allocated seating at a table that sat 10 people, 8 of whom were singles, so we nicknamed it The Orphans Table. What wonderful company. At this point I would like to mention our two waiters, Erick and Christian. I am employed in the hospitality industry, so I am sometimes critical of service standards. Not so with our two waiters, they did US proud, THEMSELVES proud, as well as Princess Cruises. Well done guys, you were thorough and professional gentlemen. Oh, the food, how could I forget the food? It was top notch, every morsel. I am now dieting.
Being such a short cruise, I didn't get to sample every nook and cranny on SP, but I did find myself sampling cocktails in The Crooners Bar on more than one occasion. My favourite was a Rock Shandy. I now have all the ingredients at home to continue the tradition, a lemon lime and bitters with white rum. Excellent.
As a trivia fanatic, I was delighted that SP offered frequent sessions in the Vista Lounge. Not all THAT good at getting every question right, I cannot boast joining The Brainy Bunch. Yes, I said BRAINY.
A photographic 'course' was available to buffs such as myself in Razzmatazz, which was very informative, and I'm sure very much appreciated by all those that attended. I bought a new Canon camera especially for my trip and it was used extensively.
At the beginning of my report, I mentioned how wonderful it was to sail out of Sydney Harbour on SP. Well, so was the return. A 7.00am berthing at White Bay prompted me to rise at 4.00am, so as not to miss the grand entrance through The Heads, although my wake up call was also the sound of the Pilot coming alongside.
Dressed in a pair of shorts and a wind cheater, I made my way up onto Deck 14 for what was to be a wonderful and unforgettable entrance into Sydney. The sun was kind enough to make an appearance, which, in turn eventually lit up the eastern side of the city skyscrapers. As we glided gently towards our berth, the sight of The Opera House and the Harbour Bridge soon came into view.
On the DVD slideshow I prepared of my holiday, the final piece of music was Peter Allen singing 'I Still Call Australia Home'. Every time I hear it, my eyes fill with tears. Of pride.
Thanks for bringing all this to me Princess. It was such a perfect 6 nights away. I am now planning my NEXT cruise, a bit longer in duration.