Family Cruise to New Zealand: Dawn Princess Cruise Review by dairy9744
Overall Member Rating
Family Cruise to New Zealand
Destination: Australia & New Zealand
Food on the ship was generally very good in both the restaurant and buffet. Of course there are always some exceptions. Past reviews of the Dawn Princess mentioned that the buffet area was too small. We however had no problems with this and in fact found it easier to get a table than we did on our last cruise (P&O Ventura).
The Entertainment was great. We thoroughly enjoyed the production shows by the resident singers and dancers. Most evenings we then listed to the fantastic pianist/singer/comic entertainer Tom Franek - highly recommend! The Vista lounge shows were generally not to our liking and possibly aimed more at the older audience.
The Kids club was fantastic. Our children, 5 and 7, were in the Princess Pelicans group (3-7yr olds). There were around 30 in that age group on the cruise but the next group (8-13) had over 100! Our kids loved going there and enjoyed all the activities and movies.
A few rough days at sea made many sea sick but when we reached the Fjord-land area we had a perfect sunny day with calm sailing in the Fjords especially the highlight Milford Sound in which the captain put the nose of the ship with in 20m of the water fall. A new record for such a large vessel.
The ports were all ok but we found it hard at times to find info on suitable activities or trips to keep the kids happy. The on board port expert gave interesting but not always accurate information which made it even more frustrating at times. We did one whole family ship organised shore excursion (Tauranga - Rotorua) which we were dissapointed with as there were 7 coaches on the same tour resulting in a crowded rushed day. In future I would do more research before leaving home and hire a car at the ports where available.
Disembarkation went well. Being on deck 5 we were one of the last to get off. We did have to wait in line for a taxi but as our flight was only late after noon that wasn't an issue for us. The lines were well organised though with a constant flow of taxis.
Overall a very enjoyable holiday. Less
Cabin review: FFp338
Convenient location. Quite noisy from below when docking at port. Otherwise comfortable and clean. Small but who goes on a cruise just to stay in their cabin anyway???