My wife and I just recently retired and decided to see the Pacific as we both had all our lives read Michener's "Hawaii" book about the Pacific peoples. Got on the Sea Princess in S/Francisco and was very disappointed in the Port Authority facilities that were run down, filthy and poorly marked. Thankfully we go on the Sea Princess and we walked around the ship while there were few people on it to find out where everything was. Well "right sized" is the perfect description as well it had a feeling of luxury the larger ships do not have. As we are 65 years old we are not looking for "a theme" ship that is laid out like a carnival but we are not old scrooges either. The Sea Princess is a warm, hospitable ship that is just right for us.
We had two stops in Hawaii, then numerous stops in in Fiji, Tahiti, Samoa, New Zealand (4) and finally landed in Sydney. Well we fell in love with Moorea and Bora Bora two ideal places that you thought about as a child and growing up and them dreamed about after seeing the movie Mutiny on the Bounty. What a beautiful place (make sure you take a boat tour at Bora Bora, the colors of the water, the power of the waves breaking on the coral and the palm trees and sand beaches are - well breath taking.
New Zealand is very similar to Canada with a small population, large rugged land mass and variable weather. We arrived in their spring time so everything was in bloom, grass was green and the weather was sunny but cool. Very nice gracious people, I could move there in a moment. We took the Tavire gorge train ride (recommended) and were treated to old "English" hospitality by a fantastic group of senior volunteers that informed and entertained us for 5 hours. Beautiful countryside with spring sheep and horses everywhere.
Our next portion of the cruise was through the fjords of New Zealand which were spectacular in all respects and we timed it just right. It was sunny and the many waterfalls were pouring over their ledges because it had rained for a week just before we arrived. This is a place you MUST GO once in your life. Milford Sound is one of the most spectacular places I have been and I have been travelling for the last 25 years on business. I never realized that Sydney was such a large city. Modern, full of life with an urgency to succeed, no graffiti and the people are warm and friendly. The Sea Princess, its crew, the food we great in all respects. All the way across the Pacific the ship was varnished, cleaned and pampered 24 hours a day. We could not have enjoyed it more. The ONLY negative issue I can recall is that after 3 days at sea you could smell sewage I imagine from the vents, this cleared up once we arrived at a large port where it was "unloaded"
Thanks Princess for another great cruise - we will be back.