Our sailing from Papeete to Lima was our 5th cruise with Oceania but our 1st on a larger O class ship. The ship was beautiful and as usual Oceania met our top three criteria with their wonderful crew, excellent cuisine and a super ... Read More
Our sailing from Papeete to Lima was our 5th cruise with Oceania but our 1st on a larger O class ship. The ship was beautiful and as usual Oceania met our top three criteria with their wonderful crew, excellent cuisine and a super comfortable bed. We also enjoyed having a greater choice of specialty restaurants and had a fantastic dinner at La Reserve. You have to pay extra for La Reserve, but it is well worth it as the dinners are special and include wine pairings.
Our only disappointments were that our 282 sq. ft. stateroom did not feel much bigger than the 165 sq. ft. staterooms we usually book on the R class ships because most of the extra space is taken up by a bathtub (which we do not use), and that the private Spa terrace did not have a thalassotherapy pool (it only has hot tubs). I also found the loungers at the Spa terrace to be less comfortable than those at the pool deck because the backs are not adjustable.
We were also disappointed at not being able to visit Easter Island, but Oceania cannot be blamed for the rough seas. The captain made several attempts to find a calmer waters to launch the pontoon for the tenders and the water kept coming over top of the pontoon into the ship. It was obviously unsafe for loading passengers. So he spent the day circumnavigating the island twice to give views from both sides of the ship. Some passengers criticized the captain for not sticking around for the second scheduled day at Easter Island, but the forecast was for much rougher seas the next day and forecasts less than 24 hours in advance are generally accurate. So in our view he made the right decision and we appreciated getting to spend an extra day in Lima.
We did not book any Oceania excursions, as they are far too expensive and booking independent tours in French Polynesia and Easter Island was easy. You do not need to form a group; most tour operators take individual bookings. We did lose some money when we had to cancel Easter Island at the last minute, but the money we saved by booking independent tours at the other ports more than made up for the loss.
This was our 2nd time cruising the islands of French Polynesia and we plan to return again, as it is in our view an unspoiled paradise with some of the best snorkeling in the world for those who love warm water, calm seas and gorgeous scenery. Read Less