106 Windstar Wind Spirit Cruise Reviews

We are fairly new to ocean cruising. We have been on several river cruises in Burma, Vietnam, Assam and India. Our only 'big ship' experiences have been with Princess Cruises out of Sydney. Both of these ships were much larger, ... Read More
We are fairly new to ocean cruising. We have been on several river cruises in Burma, Vietnam, Assam and India. Our only 'big ship' experiences have been with Princess Cruises out of Sydney. Both of these ships were much larger, with a passenger complement of up to 3000 people. Although we liked the two big ship cruises, we found the endless entertainment schedule a bit tiresome as we are not interested in cabaret shows, magic shows, retail events (disguised as jewellery 'presentations), Keno, BIngo and the seemingly endless rotation of activities designed for people who can't amuse themselves. And so we decided to go to the other end of the spectrum, to a motor yacht than can carry up to 148 passengers (but which took only 133 on our cruise). Not surprisingly it was an altogether different experience and one we much enjoyed. The downside, of course, is the lack of activities and entertainment. There was one duo who sang out on deck in the evenings. We enjoyed what they offered and appreciated the fact that the volume was subtle, allowing us to talk and think while they entertained us. The upsides were many: we got to know almost all the crew, we also met many of our fellow passengers and - on a small ship like this with a fairly 'active' itinerary - we also encountered people for whom cruising is not just a food-and-drink-fest. One of the things that amazed us about Princess Cruises was the number of people who seem to spend their entire day gravitating from breakfast to the bar to lunch to the bar and then to dinner (and the bar!). Surely there's more to life than this? Windstar's clientele seems a little more discerning, interesting and active, and although there was an element of the 'all you can eat and drink' type on board, there were also lots of others for whom the booze and food was secondary. The Indonesian restaurant staff and Filipino catering staff were great and we had a lot of laughs with them. And our cabin crew were also friendly, polite, helpful and efficient. The cabin exceeded our expectations although we met a couple of serial 'Wind-cruisers' who said they thought the cabins were small. We thought our cabin (BX) was more then sufficient for our needs with an amazing amount of storage. Even if my wife had bought 20 pairs of shoes there would have been enough room to stow them! A note on cabins. It seems that BX and AX are both pretty much the same, except AX is one deck above BX. Given that all cabins have portholes I'm not sure why you would pay extra to be 2 metres higher? We didn't bother with the shore excursions as none of them were of interest to us and in any case there are several local tour operators with whom you can book the same stuff at a much lower price. Instead we hired a car a few times, and a scooter, and drove around the various islands we stopped at. Huahine was the out and out favourite, a totally laid-back, low key South Seas destination that was infinitely more pleasurable than either Bora Bora or Moorea. The food was pretty good. I would rate the Wind Spirit as a 4-star experience and the food was certainly to a four-star standard. In fact it was far far better than the 5-star Sofitel on Moorea, where we spent three nights after the cruise had finished. The only downside was the fact you can't open the portholes to let in some fresh air. On our deck you probably would have got wet if you tried this, so I understand the reasons why. But to sleep under airconditioning is not good, and we both ended up with chest infections as a result. I would definitely travel with Windstar again, but would hope the bigger ships have windows that open! Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
We did some research and chose Windstar over Paul Gauguin Cruises for our visit to Tahiti and French Polynesia. We included the flights from LAX, hotels, and transfers. The cruise was excellent and exceeded our expectations. First, I ... Read More
We did some research and chose Windstar over Paul Gauguin Cruises for our visit to Tahiti and French Polynesia. We included the flights from LAX, hotels, and transfers. The cruise was excellent and exceeded our expectations. First, I am glad we did a cruise rather than flying into Papeete and then visiting an island or two. Many tourists only go to Tahiti and an island like Moorea or Bora Bora. This cruise allowed us to visit multiple islands and motus and I felt like we got a better feel for French Polynesia as a result. The weather was great. The staff were excellent. The service was very good. The other guests were all enjoyable. The excursions and activities were all fun ... especially the AquaSafari in Bora Bora. Though some of the excursions could be purchased directly from the vendors via Viator for significantly less. The food was terrific, especially Candles. Our cabin was small but had lots of storage and was comfortable. Our cabin attendant, Dedi, was the best! And the ship was the perfect size for us ... small, but with lots of space to hang out with others or to have some quiet space. My one issue was that the ship was under constant maintenance and one of the sails never worked during the entire cruise even though they were constantly working on it. As a result of the maintenance some areas were sometimes restricted or unavailable (roped off) and others smelled of paint and varnish. But it wasn't a big issue, just an annoyance. There were no children on the cruise and that was a plus. I would say that Windstar and its crew has this journey nearly perfected and would do it again. The travel to get to Tahiti required a long day each way. So, consider extending your stay with a visit to New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Australia or elsewhere. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
The South Pacific was number one on our bucket list, so we gave ourselves this cruise for our 45th anniversary. It lived up to our dreams! Windstar was the perfect way to see these islands. The service was great, the yacht was amazing ... Read More
The South Pacific was number one on our bucket list, so we gave ourselves this cruise for our 45th anniversary. It lived up to our dreams! Windstar was the perfect way to see these islands. The service was great, the yacht was amazing and the itinerary was perfect. We did have a couple days of rain, but it wasn't bad. We were in cabin 136, so on the lowest passenger deck, The cabin was more spacious than we expected, and had so much storage space! We loved the food, even when it was buffet style, like the deck barbeque. We snorkeled a few times and were impressed with the variety of fish and coral we saw. The crew was attentive without hovering, and all so friendly! Our only complaint about the cruise is the lack of space to visit with other passengers. The lounge was a nice space, but when the entertainment duo played they were so loud it made conversation almost impossible. We did use the marina off the back of the yacht once, It was fun, and a novel experience. We had wondered in advance if we would find other passengers to make friends with. We shouldn't have worried--we made friends with so many other cruisers--they were all so much fun! All in all, we loved this cruise and are so glad we did it! Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
If you are seeking a cruise with Tahitian culture, history and dancing, this one is not for you. We have taken two other Polynesian cruises and the crews were Polynesian. We learned a lot about the islands and their culture and history. ... Read More
If you are seeking a cruise with Tahitian culture, history and dancing, this one is not for you. We have taken two other Polynesian cruises and the crews were Polynesian. We learned a lot about the islands and their culture and history. The shows featured Polynesians and their dancing. The crew on the Wind Spirit is Asian and Eastern European and knew nothing about the islands. It seemed the cruise director learned everything he knew of the islands from books.This ship should have been sailing in the Caribbean. The entertainment every night was Hot, Hot, Hot, YMCA, and rock, nothing Polynesian. Even the music on the speaker systems was devoid of anything Polynesian. The crew was exceptional in all other respects. the food was good but not great. You pay $9 for a small glass of wine. Tours were excellent but expensive. On two occasions we contacted local tour operators for equivalent tours at less than half the price. The sports platform included a small swimming area and a couple of kayaks. On first and last day we had rooms at the Meridien hotel in Tahiti. Breakfast was included but nothing else. A better choice is the Paul Gaugin where everything except tours is included. We would not take another Windstar cruise. There is much better value to your money elsewhere. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
From the time we boarded the Wind Spirit until we disembarked 7 days later, we thoroughly enjoyed everything about this experience. The islands, the sky and the ocean, of course, are beautiful. But the ship, our cabin, the food, all of the ... Read More
From the time we boarded the Wind Spirit until we disembarked 7 days later, we thoroughly enjoyed everything about this experience. The islands, the sky and the ocean, of course, are beautiful. But the ship, our cabin, the food, all of the service and most importantly the crew, were outstanding. A highlight of the trip was the crew, starting with Martina, the activities manager. The fitness/massage team, especially Susan, the sport activity leaders, Bang Bang and Uus, the entire food and beverage group, the casino manager and our cabin steward, Indra, were all personable, excellent at their craft and worked hard to ensure that each passenger had everything that they needed or wanted. We met the ships captain and many of his staff. As we arrived safely and on time to each location, I assume that they too are excellent at their jobs. This cruise had 131 passengers and 100 crew. There were no children. The median age of the passengers was in the 50s. The boat was comfortable, safe and very clean. Each stop offered multiple shore or water excursions in and around that island or the nearby atolls or motus. We went ashore each day, either for a ship-sponsored excursion (we took 3) or to rent bikes or just hike around town or to a local beach. Many of the other passengers on this cruise seemed to be more seasoned cruise participants than us. All appeared to clearly be enjoying the trip. Certainly the ones who we met were having a great time. Although options existed on each island, we wanted to take every meal onboard the boat because the 3 meals a day were truly delicious; fresh fruit and vegetables, excellent seafood and beef cooked to perfection and plenty of beverages, non-alcoholic and alcoholic. The ship offered an alcohol package that we did not take but it appeared to be a good deal if you were inclined to drink a lot. There was also plenty of cheeses, deserts, salad options and soup. I focused on the main courses which were plentiful and excellent. There are many spectacular-looking trips on the Windstar itinerary. If I knew that this crew and this ship were leading another cruise anywhere else, I would consider that cruise next. Having said this, I assume that the culture of service and professionalism on the Wind Spirit is a hallmark of all Windstar cruises. We will definitely take another Windstar cruise. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
First, the negative: The cappuccinos on board weren't as good as the ones we make at home with our Peets coffee and DeLonghi espresso machine. Now, the positive: EVERYTHING else! We did the air + cruise package, which got us ... Read More
First, the negative: The cappuccinos on board weren't as good as the ones we make at home with our Peets coffee and DeLonghi espresso machine. Now, the positive: EVERYTHING else! We did the air + cruise package, which got us free transfers from airport to hotel to ship and back, including luggage handling. We also got plumeria flower leis upon arrival at Papeete airport and cowrie shell leis upon departure. The air package made this whole thing so convenient and easy. The crew of this ship were simply amazing. The majority were Indonesian and Filipino, with a smattering of people from everywhere else, they were incredibly hard-working and efficient and never stopped trying to please us in any way possible. They knew our names and favorite drinks on the first day and remembered them for the entire week. Food was excellent as well. The chef actually went ashore to buy fresh vanilla beans when we were docked at Raiatea and he shaved them into his sauces and desserts, resulting in the best bread pudding and pineapple upside-down cake we've ever had! And don't hesitate to take advantage of room service for breakfast. That was awesome. Cabins were roomy, considering how small the ship is, and space was very well designed. There's 12.5" of storage under the bed for your suitcases, as well as lots of drawers. The water pressure in the shower was great, too. And we loved the L'Occitane shampoo, conditioner, shower gel and body lotion they provided. We chose cabin 138, which was great. We felt that there was definitely less motion on deck 1 than the upper decks, and actually enjoyed watching the waves crash against our porthole a few times on our way out of Taha'a. Speaking of motion, I took one Bonine as we set sail from Moorea, Taha'a, Bora Bora and Huahine. No need to take any when leaving Tahiti or Raiatea, since there was little to no sailing on the open water. The islands were all fantastic, each in its own unique way. We were fortunate to have been blessed with clear skies when we needed them the most, during the drift snorkel on Taha'a and the lagoon snorkeling tour on Bora Bora (we booked Lagoon Service for that one, not the Windstar excursion. They were amazing). Those were the times we were the most blown away by the amazing colors and clarity of the water. We attribute our good weather to our reverent pilgrimage to Marae Taputapuatea on Raiatea, the most sacred spot in the entire Polynesian triangle, and the launching point of the outrigger canoe expeditions that brought the Tahitian/Raiatean people over 2600 miles to settle Hawaii, New Zealand and Easter Island. Be sure to remove your shoes if you are going to step on any of the rocks, or you are defiling sacred marae. The two special events on private motu (reef islands) were absolutely awesome. The crew set up a BBQ lunch on Motu Mahaea off the island of Taha'a and transported everyone there, along with the watersports equipment. The destination discovery event was an evening tamaaraa (Tahitian luau) on Motu Tapu off Bora Bora, complete with Tahitian dancers and fire dancers. We were also given access to the private motu from 10:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. that day, and it was amazing to have the whole island to ourselves (just about 8 of us took advantage of it, not including the two watersports pros who were there with the kayaks and paddle boards). This is not the cruise for you if you like to hang out on the ship and be passively entertained 24/7. Or if you need an elevator (there isn't one). But if you love tropical islands and snorkeling, you will have the best week ever! Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
There are so many positive things to say about this cruise. At the risk of repeating previous reviews, the ship is good-looking, in good shape, and well-run; the staff is superlative (all knew our names by the second day); the food was ... Read More
There are so many positive things to say about this cruise. At the risk of repeating previous reviews, the ship is good-looking, in good shape, and well-run; the staff is superlative (all knew our names by the second day); the food was perfectly good, if not occasionally very good; the itinerary is great; with only one exception, we were hooked up with excellent excursion guides/operators (the one exception was an "anthropologist" who was uncomfortably overly-opinionated about everything); and the Windstar-provided events (deck BBQ, Polynesian dinner+entertainment on a private motu) are awesome. I would give this cruise a solid 5 stars except that I found the afternoons to be underprogrammed. I really wish Windstar would organize more afternoon excursions and activities; instead, almost all excursions take place in the morning, and afternoons were often dead time. E.g., on both Raiatea and Huahine, which have only tiny, dusty towns, we found it difficult to find things to do and ended up just wandering around. And the watersports platform would close as early as 3pm, and the last tender was as early as 4:30pm, with nothing to do until dinner at 7:00pm. I know a lot of people like to hang out at the bar and mingle, but we're more activity-oriented. I suggest you do your research beforehand, particularly for the smaller islands, and plan something in advance instead of thinking you can just walk on the island and find something to do. A few more tips. Candles: definitely book your complimentary dinner on the back deck. The food was excellent. Internet access: instead of using the ship's, we purchased a mobile hotspot (linked to the local Tahitian cell provider) on the Air Tahiti flight over for approx $80. A little confusing to set up at first, but it worked perfectly well. It comes with 1GB data, which is enough for reading email and light web browsing for a week. Signal strength was generally decent (from an outside deck, not from our cabin). Transfers: we did our own. A taxi from the airport into downtown Papeete is about $25-30. The Tiare Tahiti Hotel is very basic (no frills, but clean and functional) and well-located. The day before: it's inevitable that you find yourself in Tahiti for a day before the cruise. What to do? We booked a half-day excursion, which was just OK. That's not the tour operator's fault, there just isn't that much really interesting in Papeete or the surrounding area; that is, we tried to make the best of it, but it still felt like forced fun. (Perhaps it would be better to book a full-day tour that goes into the interior of the island? I don't know.) The day after: same problem, you get off the ship by 9am, and our return flight was not until midnight. Windstar said we could just leave our bags on the dock until 11:30am or 12:00pm at the latest, which we did, and that allowed us to wander aimlessly around Papeete for the morning. For the afternoon we got a pool day pass at the Intercontinental. It wasn't really worth the money. My review of that can be found on the Papeete forum on TripAdvisor. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We really enjoyed our WindSpirt Cruise. The staff and crew was 5 star all the way. The only thing I would caution about is that there are no elevators. The sleeping decks are on decks 1 and 2. Breakfast is on deck 4 and is only ... Read More
We really enjoyed our WindSpirt Cruise. The staff and crew was 5 star all the way. The only thing I would caution about is that there are no elevators. The sleeping decks are on decks 1 and 2. Breakfast is on deck 4 and is only accessible via outdoor stairs. Everything else in the way of eating, lounge, shopping, casino, and reception is on the deck 3. I only caution those who have difficulty walking or breathing issues. It appeared that most travelers were anywhere from late 40’s to early 50’s and mid 60’s. There were some older and a few younger I, unfortunately, had a shin encounter with coral while on a snorkeling excursion halfway through the cruise. However, the ships doctor took excellent care of my injury, which required the equivalent of 3 stitches, using surgical glue. She had me come in to see her everyday to redress the injury, put me on a weeks worth of antibiotics, and sent me home with enough supplies to tend my injury until I could see my personal physician. All at no cost! The only negative issue we had was with the reservation. We booked our cruise (2 cabins) almost a year ahead and picked out cabins on the first deck in the middle, which we we advised had the least amount of motion and noise. We also received email confirmation by WindStar of our reservation and the cabins we requested. However, about 1.5 months before the cruise our travel agent received word that “due to WindStar converting to a new computer system in the spring” our cabins were double booked and they had to reassign us to other cabins. The new cabins were smack in the area we did not want to be. Because WindStar downgraded us they did reimburse us for the cost differential. They also gave us a shipboard credit of $250 pp. That was all well and good, but they refused to honor our original booking. I still wonder why they inconvenienced us and not the guests who booked after us. Seemed very strange and very poor customer service. For this reason I cannot give WindStar 5 stars. Sorry. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
My wife & I sailed on 9/14/17, 1st time on Wind Spirit, but our 5th Windstar cruise. Room 140. I feel that this had to be the absolute best way to visit these islands. You’re given just the right amount of time at each stop to ... Read More
My wife & I sailed on 9/14/17, 1st time on Wind Spirit, but our 5th Windstar cruise. Room 140. I feel that this had to be the absolute best way to visit these islands. You’re given just the right amount of time at each stop to visit and to grab an excursion. Then back to the ship. The ship – Wind Spirit – is showing its age in certain spots, but it’s still a great ship. The layout is very easy to navigate. The pool, gym, and casino are very small but surprisingly they were each able to accommodate everyone. The pool is just for a quick dip to cool off. The gym was just big enough to keep me doing a little something – which is fine for my vacation. The Casino has only 2 tables, I knew this, but only has 1 dealer… so only 1 table is ever open. But it’s all we needed. The entertainment was fine – consisting of a 2-person group. They were nice, friendly, always happy, and would play requests. The meals were all very good – especially Candles (it was our 1st time to eat outside at this venue). Candles has a grill setup by the pool and they prepare everything right there (I guess). Anyway I thought it was better than eating inside, but indoors at Amphora was very good too. I did hear 1 guy say that he thought everything was a little bland …. But he was always kind of grumpy, and I totally disagreed with him. Getting on and off the ship were always simple. The only long waiting period was day 1 during registration – a computer quit working and the guys using them aren’t PC experts so it took a while to reboot his. During sail away they did play the typical music and let the sails down each time (I think). That part is always nice. The people/fellow passengers seem to always consist of “my kind of people” unlike the larger ships. Almost everyone is friendly, classy, and talkative. Again, this was our 5th time and never have a problem with our fellow passengers. The crew, what can I say? The Windstar crew are the best of any ship we’ve ever sailed. Always. And these guys were no exception. And the girls too. The bar crew all knew my name by day 2… not that I have a drinking problem. I hope. Everywhere you walk, thru the ship, the crew will smile and say hello. It’s so comfortable. Room 140? I’d avoid it for now if possible. The location was actually fine (look at the deck plan). It’s not as far front as you’d think. However the air conditioning here was bad. And black soot would occasionally fall from the vent. The guys tried to fix it multiple times with no luck. Other rooms were quite different (fellow passengers showed us their rooms – which were very cool, and set to a much higher temp). So….. I’d not stay in room 140. But there is very little foot traffic by the door, so that was nice. May I suggest… Although every excursion seemed to get good reviews from everyone (so you can’t go wrong with any), the ones we missed and I wish for now are 1) snorkel and swim with the sharks & 2) Picnic (in the water!). Things we did which I recommend are: 1) Moorea – there are drivers waiting at the dock offering to drive you on a tour to a few spots for $40 pp, a private tour, consisting of 4 passengers. Do it. Then at the end have her drop you off at Sofitel for lunch (beautiful pool & wonderful place for lunch). 2)Bora Bora - Bloody Mary’s for lunch and/or dinner on day 1 of the 2 days here (dinner is best with reservations from the ship). Then on the 2nd day go to the Sofitel for a $50 pp day pass (includes large lunch). The pool is quiet with spectacular views, the beach is beautiful & calm with some toys to use, and the food was very good. Last recommendation – Bring your snorkel gear with you at every stop. You won’t regret it. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
This was our first cruise EVER. We wanted something special to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary and boy did we get something special. We stayed at the Intercontinental in Papeete for 3 nights prior and one after the cruise. Coming ... Read More
This was our first cruise EVER. We wanted something special to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary and boy did we get something special. We stayed at the Intercontinental in Papeete for 3 nights prior and one after the cruise. Coming from Australia, this best suited our plans - but more on that later. We had a Cat 'A' cabin on deck # 2 (238) and that part of the ship (forward) is the way to go - least noise when gang planks and tenders are lowered and least rolling of the boat when there was any. The cabins are spacious and superbly laid out. Heaps of space for all your things, luxury toiletries and all modern and clean. The food was superb in quality and there were always loads of choices. Breakfast is on Deck # 4 and is basically like any 5-star hotel buffet including a made-to-order egg & omelet bar. Seating is inside or outside on the deck. You are not allocated a time - just come between 6am and 10am and there was always plenty of seating. Lunch is between 12 and 2 pm at the same venue. Dress is quite casual for breakfast and dinner (shorts/T-Shirts/Polos) but elegant casual for dinner which basically means what you want it to mean but excludes jeans and sandals/thongs and requires a collared shirt (Polo is fine). Dinner is again 5-star and you turn up at Amphora restaurant and are seated by the manager. You can choose to mingle or dine on your own. There's a drinks package you can buy but we think that unless alcohol is a big part of your life, it's better to just pay-as-you-go. For a cruise of this standard, drinks are very reasonably priced (all in USD) eg. $7 for a beer of maybe $8 for a wine by the glass. We did lots of excursions via the ship but we found that there were always options where you were offered similar excursions when you went ashore. To be honest we couldn't really fault it. We had a great time and so will you. Just for information, it's probably about 60% US guests, 30% Aust/NZ and then a few from here and there. Now for some tips. Papeete. My view is that it's a cross between a quiet island town and a bustling city but it's really neither. The markets are kind of a non-event. In summary, interesting but not essential. Hotels (Pre/Post).. The general consensus is that the Intercontinental is better than Le Meridian. These are really the only two high end choices. I say this because many of our fellow cruisers stayed pre cruise in Le Meridian but changed to the Intercontinental for the post cruise accommodation. Tip - ask about a day-room to use for after the cruise. It's a nice place to hang out waiting for that late night flight home. Wi-Fi. You can buy it on-board but the coverage was rating poor by most. If you need data for social media posts or surfing the web, I suggest you buy a VINI hotspot. VINI is the largest ISP in French Polynesia. You can buy the device which comes with 1GB data for about USD70 in Papeete or on-board your Air Tahiti Nui flight ex AKL. With this you generally get good coverage in the islands and it's the cheapest option and you can connect all your devices. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Always wanted to see Tahiti and Bora Bora so I decided that Windstar and their Tahiti itinerary would be a pleasant way to do so. In reflection now, after the cruise, I think that perhaps the ship itself was the primary highlight. The ... Read More
Always wanted to see Tahiti and Bora Bora so I decided that Windstar and their Tahiti itinerary would be a pleasant way to do so. In reflection now, after the cruise, I think that perhaps the ship itself was the primary highlight. The service, food, friendliness of the entire crew was simply phenomenal. I also anticipated a very small, maybe even cramped cabin, but found our cabin (112) to be more than adequate, lots of storage space, and a very fine bathroom size too. Cannot say enough good things about the onboard meals and outstanding service. While I did mostly private tours, I did take two Windstar sponsored shore excursions and they were also excellent, with small groups and wonderful tour leaders. Activities on the ship are somewhat limited but I loved being able to snorkel, swim, kayak, and even water ski off the back of the ship at several of the island stops. Most of all, in addition to wonderful fellow passengers, I was impressed with the friendliness and helpfulness of the entire crew on the Windstar Spirit. I thought, like many others, that Bora Bora would be the highlight of the ports of call. Myself, and others I heard, felt that actually Moorea was perhaps the real favorite port of call. Have no reservations about recommending Windstar. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We wanted to see French Polynesia but we extremely disappointed with the Wind Spirit. First the good part -- the crew were great! However, there are no elevators (which we knew belatedly) so with our small stateroom on deck 1 we had to ... Read More
We wanted to see French Polynesia but we extremely disappointed with the Wind Spirit. First the good part -- the crew were great! However, there are no elevators (which we knew belatedly) so with our small stateroom on deck 1 we had to climb to deck 4 for breakfast and lunch and deck 3 for dinner. On top of that, we had to climb to deck 3 to exit the ship for shore excursions, etc. and then climb down 24 steps to get to the tender/dock (most all tender stops). All rooms were dark and seemed to have little ventilation. Dining room was dark and very noisy. Food was nothing to write home about. Most shore excursions we did were for snorkeling and they were less than great. The best was one we booked privately in Bora Bora with Pure Snorkeling. By the end of the 11 days my hips were so painful I could hardly walk (from all the stairs). Forget this cruise, it is definitely not worth the time or money. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
This was our fourth cruise on the Wind Spirit in Tahiti. We chose the Wind Spirit as the itinerary allows full days on four islands and two full days in Bora Bora. There are interesting shore excursions for those who want to be guided ... Read More
This was our fourth cruise on the Wind Spirit in Tahiti. We chose the Wind Spirit as the itinerary allows full days on four islands and two full days in Bora Bora. There are interesting shore excursions for those who want to be guided however we just choose to hang out at the ports and swim on the local beaches. There are three major events in the seven day cruise. The first special event is a dinner deck BBQ with the most amazing array of seafood and steaks to roasts and ribs. The evening ends with a crew line dance that is fun to join. The second event is a day on a private island where the crew set up a lunchtime buffet and a bar that fitted in with a day of swimming and snorkeling.The Captain and Hotel Manager participated in the greeting to the island and the food preparation. Amazing! The third and major event is on another private island in Bora Bora. Here the crew set up an evening buffet with local dishes such as the local Poisson Cru, a raw Tuna dish marinated in Lime and Coconut. The Tuna is purchased from local fishermen who deliver the fish directly to the ship.That night the festivities continued back on the ship for our sail away from Bora Bora headed for Huahine. While Windstar Cruises advertise one special event on this trip, I think that all three events are special and go far and beyond what one expects in this modern world of cruising. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We did the 7 day Tahiti experience two years ago and enjoyed it very much. We did the extended version to experience the Wind Spirit in Full Sail in the open sea. It didn't happen. The saile were never all put up and only a token part ... Read More
We did the 7 day Tahiti experience two years ago and enjoyed it very much. We did the extended version to experience the Wind Spirit in Full Sail in the open sea. It didn't happen. The saile were never all put up and only a token part sail went up briefly. Additional to this Windstar have cut back in many areas. The so called Watersports platform showing Skiing, Sailing ang Kyaking is no more. They have cut staff and the Sailboats never hit the water as they did every day on the last cruise the reason for this is not enough staff to man the area. The Kyaks are in a Pauling condition. The Dining experience is now reduced because Windstar Head Office have decreed that White Wine Glasses are to be removed and all Wine served in Red Wine Glasses. Refrigerators were broken so hot White Wine was served. Urns were broken so Tea was Luke warm at best. No Shampoo was available. Paid for Transferrs were forgotten and Passengers left stranded. Tenders were in poor condition with broken seats. I don't know how Certificates were obtained recently with the Tenders in this condition. The Past Cruisers drinks night was spent wondering where this line is going. The opinion was overwhelmingly down. Unfortunately a great cruise line in decline. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
This was our first cruise on such a small ship. We have previously sailed on large megaships with Holland America, Princess and Celebrity and found Windstar to be far superior for experienced travelers who enjoy adventure and more unique ... Read More
This was our first cruise on such a small ship. We have previously sailed on large megaships with Holland America, Princess and Celebrity and found Windstar to be far superior for experienced travelers who enjoy adventure and more unique ports. The Tahiti ports are the south seas paradises we dreamed of and more than lived up to our expectations when we booked. They are still relatively unspoiled by hordes of tourists and far more relaxing than Hawaii. The food on Windstar was outstanding and there were no upcharges for specialty restaurants. The staff were uniformly professional and friendly and the food was far better than that we experienced on mass market cruiselines. My only caveats are that Windstar is not well suited for families sailing with children, elderly people with mobility issues and party people. Independent adults and couples looking for a very relaxing vacation will find Windstar to be an ideal and adventurous escape. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
After searching for a "unique experience" for our 40th wedding anniversary my wife and I settled on the 11 day French Polynesia excursion on Windstar's Wind Spirit. Our decision couldn't have been better! Embarkation ... Read More
After searching for a "unique experience" for our 40th wedding anniversary my wife and I settled on the 11 day French Polynesia excursion on Windstar's Wind Spirit. Our decision couldn't have been better! Embarkation and disembarkation were well planned and went smoothly. The limited number of passengers led to a more intimate atmosphere, making it easy to make friends. This is definitely not a trip for folks with children, but then again that's part of what we were looking for. The crew were uniformly friendly and helpful and worked around our schedule when cleaning/making up our cabin. While somewhat compact our cabin was well designed and extremely comfortable. The food on our cruise was outstanding, especially the evening dinners in the Amphora A dining room. We also had the opportunity to dine on-deck under the stars, which was an incredible experience. We took advantage of a wide variety of excellent shore excursions, and particularly liked snorkeling in the coral aquarium on Rangiroa, the Huahine and Bora Bora island tours, the Anapa Pearl Farm, and Aqua Safari on Bora Bora. In short, Windstar more than exceeded our expectations. We have been on several very nice trips with other cruise lines, but after our experience with Windstar I can't imagine ever vacationing on a large ship again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This was such a magical cruise! Totally amazing look at the island nation of Tahiti.It truly enriched our lives. The food was top notch and we have cruised and traveled the entire world. It's a nice small ship where you get to know ... Read More
This was such a magical cruise! Totally amazing look at the island nation of Tahiti.It truly enriched our lives. The food was top notch and we have cruised and traveled the entire world. It's a nice small ship where you get to know everyone, crew and fellow passengers. We saw 6 or 7 islands Bora Bora and Huahine being my favorite.The crew couldn't have been better. Rina and Natasha at the front desk were SO NICE and helpful they knew everyone's names. They deserve a raise! Captain Ned and first mate were the most personable officers I have ever meet on a cruise, loved them. The excursions were to die for. Loved the floating mats off the back of the boat when we stopped. Dody my room steward (room 104) kept or room immaculate at all times. The crew on this ship made this cruise they were the best of any cruise I have ever taken. Just loved this cruise. They do need new mattresses in the cabins. I hope that is part of the refurb they are about to do. If you want to do Tahiti this is the way to go, even better then staying a week in Bora Bora. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
I will start by saying that we selected a March cruise being in the low season it's more of a bargain because it is also considered the rainy season. We kept an open mind and thought we could expect some rain. We were lucky, it did ... Read More
I will start by saying that we selected a March cruise being in the low season it's more of a bargain because it is also considered the rainy season. We kept an open mind and thought we could expect some rain. We were lucky, it did rain but none of that rain happened during the days of our trip so we were able to enjoy all our excursions. In fact the days were very warm and sunny. With that said our package included round trip airfare (Air Tahiti Nui), transfers (before & after cruise), lodging (Le Meridien/Tahiti) and the cruise itself and all went extremely smooth. The Windstar Spirit is a great yacht, you are made to feel special the moment you board, the service is fantastic with a helpful staff. The meals are thoughtfully made and presentation at meals were done well. The pool/bar area is nice & you are welcome on the bridge. The special on deck BBQ, and motu outings were uniquely delightful. The Tahitian on board entertainment was a welcome treat. The only gripe we had was with the lounge entertainment duet. They we young & talented but they didn't hit the mark with their music seeing that most of the passengers were all baby boomer ages (70"s on down) which is probably why the lounge was dead most nights. They need to pay a visit to Las Vegas & see what they should play or better yet ask their audience for request. On our cruise someone requested that they play Amy Winehouse's Rehab (which they did) and the audience was very receptive and sang along. That was a beginning to a more fun evening. You won't go wrong with this cruise so go and you'll have met many new friends w/ great memories that will last a lifetime.. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This was our first cruise and we chose it because of the small ship size, good food reviews and itinerary. Being able to visit multiple islands was a great way to experience this part of the world. You can embark from 1pm and all aboard ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we chose it because of the small ship size, good food reviews and itinerary. Being able to visit multiple islands was a great way to experience this part of the world. You can embark from 1pm and all aboard is 10pm. We checked in at 3pm and then got off at 6pm to pick up a few supplies in Papeete. Getting on and off the ship is very easy, once on the cruise the longest we waited for a tender was 10 minutes. I was slightly disappointed by some of the food onboard as the good reviews didn't match my experience. Veranda restaurant needs improvement as the breakfast and lunch options were bland. Every morning I ordered poached eggs which I only received twice - other times I received soft boiled eggs or fried over easy eggs instead! Produce in general needs improvement. Amphora restaurant is very good with good service, nice ambiance and lots of great options on the menu which changed daily. The deck barbecue and motu picnics were all excellent. Candles restaurant on the deck was very nice under the stars with a good menu and good service. The jet ski excursion in Bora Bora was a highlight but I wouldn't bother with the stingray and snorkel tour again as we were moored by 3 other tours and there really was nothing interesting to see where we stopped to snorkel. Bloody Mary's is within walking distance of the jet ski tour and a bus back cost 500 xpf per person. I enjoyed the coral drift tour in Ta'ha. I loved the beach at Huahine which is a short walk from the port. It was interesting to learn about the history of Raiatea from one of the local storytellers.. Service is excellent and all staff know your name by the time you wake up in Moorea. Sail away was lovely. Disembarking occurs between 8am and 8.30am at the end of the cruise and was straightforward Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
Windstar cruise line offered an interesting opportunity to see more than Tahiti and Moorea by taking a week long cruise on the Wind Spirit. The itinerary included the additional Society Islands of Bora Bora, Taha'a, Raiatea, and ... Read More
Windstar cruise line offered an interesting opportunity to see more than Tahiti and Moorea by taking a week long cruise on the Wind Spirit. The itinerary included the additional Society Islands of Bora Bora, Taha'a, Raiatea, and Huahine. Each stop afforded us the opportunity to learn more about the Polynesian culture, the local history, and the current economy. The two tours we arranged before the cruise with Francyfranc Tours in Moorea and L'Excursion Bleue in Raiatea, were offered at half the price of similar ship-sponsored tours and were excellent - better than the two ship tours we booked for other ports, which were also good. We were invited to visit the ship's bridge when at sea, although most inter-island travel was at night. It was a rare opportunity to chat with the captain and each of the officers on duty throughout the cruise and we very much enjoyed our brief conversations and the explanation of the instruments used to control the ship. The food was delicious and the table service was generally very friendly and efficient. We enjoyed the two events ashore: the evening luau on Motu Tabu off Bora Bora, which included very entertaining Polynesian dancers, and the picnic lunch on a motu off Taha'a. However, the evening buffet on the open pool deck with a rain storm was not as successful. Of particular note was the Captain of the Hotel Staff and one of his Lieutenants assisting on the serving line during the picnic. This leadership approach results in the friendly, cheerful and efficient service provided by the entire crew directly serving the passengers. Do not miss the crew's talent show which is presented at the end of the voyage. The other onboard entertainment is limited to a husband and wife team singing popular songs. Be cognizant that the weather in the southern hemisphere summer (our winter) is sunny, hot and humid with frequent showers. Being from Houston, we know hot and humid, but we found this weather to be well beyond our summer experiences. If you like water sports (snorkeling, kayaking, etc.) you will love this cruise. Snorkel gear and other water sport equipment is provided without charge. Just a heads up: when snorkeling, be careful of currents carrying you into coral, which can cause significant injuries. You will probably not find any cheap cruises or airfare to Tahiti due to lack of competition. Be sure to allow plenty of time (3 hours minimum) if you're making connections in L.A. and be clear on whether your bags will be checked through. We almost missed our flight to Tahiti due to a misunderstanding in this regard. Also recognize that you must produce a return or continuing airline reservation or you will not be issued a boarding pass to fly to Tahiti. In summary, we very much enjoyed this unique cruise on Windstar and would definitely recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
A Tahiti/French Polynesia cruise has been on my bucket list ever since Windstar initiated this itinerary. I'm a solo cruiser and particularly enjoy the Windstar cruises because of the more intimate, convivial feeling with a relatively ... Read More
A Tahiti/French Polynesia cruise has been on my bucket list ever since Windstar initiated this itinerary. I'm a solo cruiser and particularly enjoy the Windstar cruises because of the more intimate, convivial feeling with a relatively small passenger size--about 130 in this case. Not an inexpensive trip for a single, but worth it. Embarkation was smooth. SHIP: Delightful 4-masted motor sailing ship. Facilities are adequate for a ship and passenger number of this size. Caveat: some open air facilities like deck dining and happy hour are weather-dependent. CABIN: The cabins are woodsy and cozy (rather than roomy) with lots of clever nooks for storage. Closet, drawer and storage space is adequate. Robes and slippers are supplied along with the usual toiletries. Always flowers and a fruit selection on fold-out table. Minibar good but lacks snack options. I always have the feeling that there is a crew of elves that invisibly keep things neat, filled up, replaced, arranged, made up and cleaned. Cabin stewards created different "towel creatures" daily for our amusement. Twin beds can be slid together. Portholes ok.DINING: Inside and outside, casual and laid-back elegant. Affected by terrible weather but handled deftly by crew. Food: substantial, wide selection but chef was into too many uber-creative concoctions. ACTIVITIES: offered daily, I didn't partake. Crew show was terrific. SERVICE: Absolutely, consistently the best, even in difficult conditions. A Winstar hallmark. PORTS/EXCURSIONS: Itinerary altered due to bad weather. Lots of excursions but many cancelled due to weather & conditions. All setbacks handled with fabulous communication, efficiency & good spirits. Delightful island picnic with entertainment. CAPTAIN very communicative re: poor weather and rough conditions. He made alterations for passengers' comfort. It appeared there was always a 'Plan B' for everything & it was seamlessly enacted when necessary. WOULD I GO AGAIN ? You betcha! I'd like to experience this cruise outside of rainy season. ADVICE: Avoid rainy season (Jan to spring)!! NOTE: this was my 8th Windstar cruise. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
My wife and I selected this cruise because it had good reviews and was in the area where we wanted to do a cruise, being Tahiti and French Polynesia. Our only other cruise experiences are just two, a 4-day Blue Lagoon cruise in Fiji and a ... Read More
My wife and I selected this cruise because it had good reviews and was in the area where we wanted to do a cruise, being Tahiti and French Polynesia. Our only other cruise experiences are just two, a 4-day Blue Lagoon cruise in Fiji and a 15-day Viking River Cruise in Europe, which were both much better than this one. We started the 10-day cruise in Papeete on 13 Jan 2017, Tahiti. It rained hard when we left Papeete and the first night was quite rough. The Wind Spirit is not very stable. We heard that several other passenger became sea-sick. Bad weather kept around us for 8 of the 10 days. Many of the shore expeditions and water-sport tours had to be cancelled. The highlight of the cruise was supposed to be the lagoon of Bora Bora, but because of the weather we saw very little of it. But a BBQ dinner and local show on small island were very nice. A few times, during sailing, the waves tilted the ship so far that food in the dining room slid of the tables and some people fell of their chairs, resulting in injuries. Our full glasses of wine fell of the table and to my surprise we had to pay for new ones, and I can assure you that everything is very expensive on board. In general the food was good and the service in the on-board restaurants was excellent. Evening entertainment was mainly (every evening) provided by a young couple that sang and played, with background music, popular Western songs. They were quite good but there could have been more variation in the entertainment. Because of the many cancelled excursions, life became very boring on this relatively small cruise ship. I also thought that the communication by the Ukranian activity director was often poor and his strong accent did not help there. Overall we found that Windstar did little to offer alternative entertainment for the cancelled excursions. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
The term 180' from normal is very fitting. We have been on 10 cruise with larger cruise ships and this one was very different. Everyone is so relaxed and friendly and there is no need to get all dressed up. The crew where amazing ... Read More
The term 180' from normal is very fitting. We have been on 10 cruise with larger cruise ships and this one was very different. Everyone is so relaxed and friendly and there is no need to get all dressed up. The crew where amazing and worked so hard to make our 2 meal on coral islands so special. The highlight was the dinner at Bora Bora where we watched the sunset as we sipped our cocktails and ate a fest before being taken back to the ship in the dark and have a great view of the ship all light up with her sails up. The accomodation was a little cramped but well appointed. My only grip would be that on the lower levels the engine noise was quite evident. Though we did get use to it and the benefit of being low was the close proximity of the ocean to oir port hole. This was definatley a bucket list cruise and one we will remember for a long time. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
It was my 4th cruise, and this is my first review. First time in a small ship and probably not going to a big one again! My impression of Windstar Cruises is that everyone was REALLY interested in make my vacations happier and my life ... Read More
It was my 4th cruise, and this is my first review. First time in a small ship and probably not going to a big one again! My impression of Windstar Cruises is that everyone was REALLY interested in make my vacations happier and my life easier. Really looked to me like the crew enjoy what they do. I never heard a "NO" for any request. We went to French Polynesia. The excursions was TOP. Never crowded. Never got lines. Me and my husband were called by our names all the time. We made great new friends, but that aren't many people at our age (37-44). Most of the passengers were older. The food was the best I ever had in a cruise ship, including special creations with local food. The chef, Darin Erp, tried all the food in every venue in every day. I would certainly back to a new cruise in Windstar. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
Wind Spirit Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 4.0 N/A
Dining 4.0 4.5
Entertainment 3.0 3.7
Public Rooms 2.5 4.4
Fitness & Recreation 4.0 N/A
Family N/A 3.8
Shore Excursions 4.5 N/A
Enrichment Activities 4.0 N/A
Service 4.5 4.8
Value for Money 4.0 N/A

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