If you are ever thinking of seeing the South Pacific, this is the only way to do it...... I repeat the only way to do it.... This ship is the expert. They have only sailed here since the ship was built in 1997 and redone in 2009 ..... and when the weather kicks up down here, (we had to dodge two major cyclones) they do it with style ...... We were to go to the Cook islands on part of this 11-day cruise, but because of Cyclone PAT, (which eventually hit the Cooks hard), we headed to great Nameless Islands (my mind is so totally relaxed from the cruise that I just can't recall their names now), but I can tell you that the ship has such a great reputation in the South Pacific that when the Island of less than 1000 people heard we were coming they threw us an authentic Native feast on the beach .... a lot of the island came to this once in a lifetime event.
When I say this is the only way to see the South Pacific, here is what I mean. My Wife and I spent 3 nights on Tahiti on our own before the cruise and 1 night after. We have traveled to over 65 countries.. and I can't recall a more expensive place than Tahiti.... a Lunch snack for 4 at what amounted to a Taco Stand was $50 and a 10-minute cab ride after negotiations was $30.. So the ship is a bargain..... All drinks are included as are all tips.... and I had to remind our waiters to make mine weak..... We had a little contest going of who could order a drink that the bartenders could not make... Once we thought they were stumped but only because they knew it by another name......
My wife just informed me that the Feast took place on Fakarava the ancient capital of the Tuamotu Archipelago. Even though it was never on our bucket list we are proud to put that one on our "been there done that" list.
The cabins were great and what you would expect on a 5-star ship. We heard no complaints and there was none of the running around trying to get your cabin changed you usually hear about the first day on a cruise....
Food was great. You could stay on a diet if you are crazy! We chose to indulge..
Plenty of great music and entertainment, everywhere every night... I think the crew was having as much fun as we were and they have a great sense of humor.
Good Shore Excursions. The divers and snorkelers were very happy...If you don't snorkel yet... learn here, it will never be better.. and a lot of it is free off any beach.
A lot of people were worried about how this ship would be after the change of ownership.... no worries there. I expect it to get even better...
Suggestion to management: If you ever do move the boat to another destination for a short time (hint hint: Fiji) We will be on it!
Jeff & Pat Shanahan Feb 9-20, 2010