Going to New Zealand and Australia was a big "bucket list" thing. The Princess cruise/land tour was awesome. We booked an inside cabin since we had mostly port days and spent the day at the Sanctuary during the Fiordland cruising. It more than met our expectations. We used Princess excursions because we have found that they have already screened their vendors for the most reliable and knowledgable guides. We once used a van off the pier on a stop on a Panama cruise and the tour guide did not provide any admittance to venues and after fact checking some of the information I found he made things up as he went along. My time is to precious for me to waste so I won't short change myself again and waste my precious time to save a few dollars. The excursions from the ship are now memories I cherish. The land tour in Australia, The Ultimate Outback, had us being cared for as VIPs. We came home knowing we had the best experience possible for the time we had there. The representative/tour guide managed everything for us at every stop. Our rooms were high quality and the meals that were included were wonderful. I came home knowing so much about the Ausie and Aborigine cultures. It was also fun staying at The Four Seasons in Sydney, because I never book five stars. We were able to get extra time through Princess at their rate. Since it is a lot of effort to get from the USA to that part of the world this cruise is a way to make the most of your time and experience the unique part of the world down under. If you have time for the land tour it will be icing on the cake.
It was very comfortable. Since sailing on the Emerald five months earlier out of Southampton they had put in new beds and bedding. It was luxurious. There was plenty of closet space and there was room under the bed to store our suitcases. Our room steward was awesome. We had two issues with the toilet not flushing but the maintenance people resolved that within a short time. This is definitely great value.
We had a great time learning about the Maori culture, the geothermal springs and other aspects of New Zealand life.
Though it was a short tour we got a great overview and introduction to the area. We had the evolution of the neighborhoods and community explained to us and also were shown some of the impacts of the recent earthquakes.