Sun Princess Cruise Review by Po11y27
- Sail Date: December 2011
- Destination: Australia & New Zealand
- Cabin Type: Balcony
The formal dining was excellent and the staff in dining rooms and bars were excellent. Our room steward was excellent. I would like to make special mention of Ramil who really went out his way to ensure that we had a good time in the Wheelhouse. Thanks mate!! Loved your magic tricks (and the pics of your HOT wife).
That is where the positive comments stop.
The buffet was average most days. Xmas morning there was no ham and eggs option in the formal dining room. No special arrangements made at all for xmas breakfast - the same as any other day. We could not get a seat for xmas lunch at the "traditional" lunch of Indian curries. Come on guys, we were on a predominantly Australian / New Zealand cruise. I have since heard that there were over 1000 onboard complaints made about the horrendous menu on xmas day.
The Horizons room (buffet restaurant) was so incredibly hot, even at night time, as to make dining there very unpleasant. The doddering elderly caused a lot of waiting around while they struggled with everything or clogged up the premium sitting areas and monopolised the atrium musicians with their own and only their own requests. The children (quite rightly) christened the ship "SS Retirement Village".
The hotel manager and the ship's captain were both rude individuals and the captain has yet to respond to our letter of complaint 12 months later. The ship's captain's cocktail party was a complete waste of time. I expected that he would use this opportunity to show a little bit of flair and be the ambassador for the company that he should be. The poor quality of the drinks meant that we very quickly exited with an even more negative impression of the man, his boat and the company that hired him.
We took the hotel manager to task on his treatment of the younger travellers and his response showed that he had the personality of a dictator, even in his own home ( and by his own admission). It is no wonder that guests are treated as badly. The hotel manager's understanding of his own internal systems was very sadly lacking - could this have been his first assignment on this ship???
The average demographic on the boat meant that the ship was virtually shut down at night. The only true occasion to party - Hawaiian night, was only just starting to get going, when they shut it down.
Talking to other cruisers, we found that there were many very creative complaints. None of these was surprising. The reaction of crew to these complaints was also not surprising. However, I will let them tell there own stories.
By the time we left Dunedin, heading home, we were wishing we had already arrived. It will take a long time before we take another cruise and an even longer time before we even consider another Carnival cruise. The next time we will certainly be doing a lot more comprehensive research into the cruise, the ship and past passenger comments.
Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
AucklandSelf-directed touring. My daughter really "fell" for the Skytower Skyjump. She could be heard all over Auckland. We all absolutely loved the sail on the NZ Americas Cup yacht. We finished it off with a "cool" drink at the Icebar.View All 271 Auckland Cruise Port Reviews
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AkaroaThe port was actually Akaroa (which didn't appear in the list). We all enjoyed wandering through the French-styled village. I would recommend taking the tour of the Lighthouse. After lunch of fish and chips, we tried to steel ourselves for the afternoon excursion - a swim with the dolphins. The hector dolphins were so amazing that we very quickly forgot about the 12 deg water. Thoroughly recommend that you experience this - they supply wet suits.View All 12 Akaroa Reviews
City TourSelf-directed touring. We hired a vehicle and drove to each of the stops. The first stop was Cadburys. The tour was not very good as the factory was mainly closed down. We did get a very good commentary from our guide and we all sampled various types of chocolate. Interesting but would have been better if it were all operating.View All 25 City Tour Reviews
We then drove out to Natures Wonders for a fun excursion to see some fantastic conservation efforts. We all enjoyed the tour in the eight-wheel-drive buggy to see seals and penguins along with a very interesting commentary from our guides. This is one to add to your list. A must see.
From there we went on to Speights Brewery.
Speights BreweryThe tour was very good. The guide was very knowledgeable and really enjoyed his job. The tour was followed up by a very comprehensive self-serve tasting experience. Awesome. "Here's the glasses, there's the taps - go for it" if you like beer, you should definitely find something here to suit your tastes.View All 9 Speights Brewery Reviews
NapierA full-day tour. We privately hired a driver who took all of us around Napier and Hastings. There was little of interest to be seen. Although the driver did his best to take us to the most interesting sites. The adults enjoyed Moanna Park winery. The children enjoyed the chocolate factory.View All 84 Napier Cruise Port Reviews
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TaurangaSelf-directed touring. We hired a car and drove up to Rotorua. We all enjoyed the Luge, but did not get to spend enough time there. We could easily have spent all day just at that one spot. Some of us enjoyed the cultural aspects of The Maori Cultural centre Te Puia.View All 180 Tauranga Cruise Port Reviews
Everybody loved the thrill of the jet boat ride from Kawarau Jet. The combination of thrills and spins with cultural and heritage commentary was enough to keep even the young ones enthralled.
View Cruise Critic's Tauranga Cruise Port Review
WellingtonSelf-directed touring. We took a taxi downtown to the Te Papa museum. It was fascinating and very well done. After lunch we took the cable car up to the gardens. We wandered for a couple of hours through the gardens. don't miss the roses!! We walked back to the boat, which was an easy walk and we got to see parts that we would not normally have seen.View All 271 Wellington Cruise Port Reviews
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