We selected this cruise because it was to and from Australia and would include Milford Sound which we did not see on our last cruise there when we entered the sound at 5am and departed at 6am (all in the dark). We were also looking forward to seeing Christchurch and the progress there since the earthquake. Unfortunately, due to bad weather in both places we spent 2 extra days at sea and did not see either place.
This was our first and last experience on a ship as big as the Ruby Princess as we were not keen on such big crowds and difficulty getting lifts and on and off the ship in tenders etc. However the length of the ship provided lots of exercise getting from one end of the ship to the other numerous times a day.
The ship is getting a little "tired" and "boring" with the same colours and furnishings etc as other ships and looks like it is due for a refurbishment.
Service at all times was very good and all crew very friendly and helpful. Michelangelo Dining room staff extremely attentive even though we selected "anytime" dining. They accommodated our newly formed group of 9 who met on the first night of the cruise and ate together at 6.30 every night at the same table.
Use of the "medallion" for the first time by the ship was interesting and has great potential - just a few glitches to be ironed out. Loved the feature which enabled ordering drinks and food for delivery anywhere on the ship within about 10 minutes. Also enabled us to find members of our party and find our way to them as well as way finding all around the ship.
The usual great entertainment especially the production show were always popular.
Plenty of a huge variety of activities available at all times of the day
Popular activities attracting big crowds in the Piazza are a disaster as there are so few seats available and so few people are able to find a place to stand and actually see what is happening.
We did not use the ships shore tours and usually found plenty of local services such as Hop on Hop off buses or local taxis available - these are rarely advertised by the ship however we did have an excellent port lecturer who gave great information on each of our ports of call including some local “private” information.
Comfortable and reasonably spacious