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275 P&O Australia Cruise Reviews

My son's 6 years old, I wanted to test his 'sea legs' on a mini cruise and Pacific Explorer was right time right place to fit in with school hols. Embarkation was amazingly straight forward from White Bay Cruise Terminal, ... Read More
My son's 6 years old, I wanted to test his 'sea legs' on a mini cruise and Pacific Explorer was right time right place to fit in with school hols. Embarkation was amazingly straight forward from White Bay Cruise Terminal, although there is no car parking anywhere nearby which is a bit annoying given the acres of space in the adjacent area. Rooms - Our 'Stateroom' was clean, tidy and kept that way by Donny and Joseph during our trip, thank you very much guys (in case you're reading this). Food - The main food area is 'The Pantry' which is essentially a food court as you'd find in major cities. There were eight different choices for Lunch and Dinner including Indian, Chinese, Mexican, Roast, fish and chips etc, all of which were quite satisfactory. Breakfast choices were cerial, yoghurt, fruit and full english with an abundance of surprisingly good bacon. There was also a good salad and fruit bar, a reasonable selection of bread, self service tea and coffee and a bar with Barista made coffee (not included in price). If you're in a largish group don't expect to be seated together at busy times. The pantry also offers sandwiches, rolls and wraps during the arvo which were very good quality. Also included in the fare is Dragon Lady (Chinese) and Angelo's (Italian), Dragon Lady decor is a fantastic subdued black with exceptionally well thought out lighting, food is what you'd expect from any Chinese restaurant in the world - Chinese. We didn't eat in Angelo's but we were told it was good. Next up is 'Lukes' and 400 Gradi , Luke's is an alfresco 'grill' overlooking the pool area designed by Luke Mangan, a limited menu but very good quality, try the Korean Chicken Burger with pickles, absolutely fantastic. 400 Gradi was exceptionally good, a fantastic selection of good quality Italian Prosciutto and Salami, traditional Italian style pizza and possibly and the best Semi Freddo in the Southern Hemisphere, seriously, it really was that good. Neither restaurants are included in the fare but the cost is modest, starter, pizza, two desserts, three glasses of wine and four mocktails set me back $40, 'Lukes' was similarly inexpensive and the staff in both could have come directly from a top City restaurant, very, very good at what they do (to the point of going to another of the ships bars to get me a particluar wine). There are other restaurants but we didn't get time to go to them. Entertainment - Every evening a programme is supplied detailing the next days events of which there is about 50 or so between the hours of 7am and midnight, too much to go into here but something for all age groups. The main deck has two pools, two hot tubs a well stocked and efficiently staffed bar, a MASSIVE movie screen and lots and lots and lots of noise, the PA system pumps music, trivia, exercise routines and movie soundtracks relentlessly from early to late, fortunately it's a good quality sound system. Kids - There are two main clubs, 6 and under and 7-11 year old's, (apparently something for teenagers as well) both are very well staffed (I guesstimated 1 supervisor per 6 or 7 kids). The club has secure buzz entry and kids under 8 are not allowed to leave unless a parent is there. Adults - The ship has an adults only retreat, conveniently located adjacent to the kids club. It has three hot tubs, a pool, plenty of loungers a very well stocked bar and is situated at the back of the ship with open views of the ocean. I didn't experience any of the other adult attractions as I was travelling with a 6 year old. Passengers - It would be difficult not to have regular chats with other passengers given the close proximity dictated by the limited space, I struck up countless friendships with people of all age groups all of whom were thoroughly enjoying themselves. Crew - 850 crew to 2500 passengers, all are clearly very well trained, seemed happy doing what they were doing and always keen to assist in any way they could, I can't over emphasize the consistently positive attitude I encountered with the staff and crew, absolutely amazing team, if you're a P&O boss you need to give these guys a pay rise, all of them. Finally, having read some of the other negative reviews it should be pointed out that this ship is very family oriented, if you struggle being in a 'captive environment' surrounded by kids and/ or enjoy your privacy and solitude then this particular cruise ship probably isn't for you. Have a fun cruise. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We have cruised many times on various cruise lines including the Costa, Carnival, Celebrity, NCL and HAL almost always in a suite or penthouse product. This was our first time on a P and O. To be honest we have previously avoided cruising ... Read More
We have cruised many times on various cruise lines including the Costa, Carnival, Celebrity, NCL and HAL almost always in a suite or penthouse product. This was our first time on a P and O. To be honest we have previously avoided cruising out of Brisbane even though we live nearby in Noosa. We read the negative reviews about this ship and expected the worst but instead found it really great value for our cruise on the Aria to Noumea, Mare and Port Villa. I encourage you not to believe the other negative reviews about this ship. I will tell you why. The refurb is fantastic. The public areas are clean and have sophisticated decor. The ship is an old HAL ship and the layout is a smaller version of the Noordam. Yes the ship is worn in a few places like some of the chair arms and bath tubs, but if you think that is horrible and will ruin your cruise, then really what are you doing here anyway? The staff on board were all happy, friendly and helpful. We have been on ships where the staff don't smile and are worn out and show it. (Like the Celebrity Millennium where the staff were rude and our room wasn't cleaned upon arrival, during the cruise and we could write our names and play naughts and crosses on the dirt and grease on the glass coffee table!) For this cruise we decided to try the suite category at $2200 each including the drinks package. It was worth every cent! We were welcomed aboard with a complimentary bottle of champagne and fresh fruit bowl. Our room was spacious and the attendants Mannix and Jayson were friendly, approachable and fantastic. Nothing was too much trouble. If you ask, they unpack for you but we normally do that ourselves. Like the rest of the ship the room was spotless. The extra large balcony was perfect for us as we sometimes get a little freaked out by the heights of bigger ships but on the Aria the huge space enabled us to feel safe. There were two sun lounges and a table for four so it too was spacious. We ate our room service breakfast (free for suite guests) every morning enjoying the spectacular views. We were pleasantly surprised to discover that except for snacks like peanuts etc and drinks the rest of the room service menu is free for suite guests. After a day onshore pjs, room service and movie is perfect. This cruise was incredible value for money in the suite category especially when compared to other cruise lines. The only thing missing was a proper butler and concierge. Having said that, the main reception and shore tours desks were never crowded when we went there. Our room attendants were just as good as a butler anyway. We really wanted to review the food here. By comparison to HAL and Carnival the food was better. If you can't find several nice things to eat on this ship you must be too well done for. The Pantry offers wonderful, plentiful options and the food was suitably hot. This concept of being served the food is fantastic. On other ships where the food is self served in this casual eating option, we always have the fear of everyone else who isn't hygienic touching the utensils. Not on this ship! Other reviews have commented on dessert being 'mass' produced. Seriously with 1200 guests and 600 crew any food offering is mass produced! The desserts on board were on par with every other ship we have cruised with including the penthouse products on the NCL. We weren't impressed with Salt as much as we thought we would be. The custard dessert was exactly the same as the Pantry and The Waterfront Brûlée custard and the Agnolotti was greasy. Angelos was, however, spectacular and Dragonlady wonderful too. The food on board was the same standard as all of the complimentary eating areas we have had on the other ships we have been on. Overall this cruise was excellent value for money. Let's add it up. Clean stylish accomodations, spa bath, robes, slippers, welcome champagne, fruit, afternoon canapés and complimentary wine and soft drink when served, free laundry, free room service, free drinks, complimentary high tea in your suite, Nespresso coffee machine, priority disembarkation and embarkation and it results in a value for money for product. The destinations were great but as we got to Noumea late the shore excursions were cancelled. Of course there were disgruntled passengers however most agreed it was a good excuse to come back again! We came on this cruise to give it a go. It was a nice smooth cruise. If you are use to superior ships like NCL and Celebrity suite categories of course the amenities on the Aria suite aren't as luxurious. But it is a third of the cost, and given that, this is a great price, great product, and great destinations. Great cruise! Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
Great cruise, this was the last cruise for the band Alter Ego after this cruise they are disbanding. P&O Australia certainly has great entertainers on board and it was evident how well attended all the theme nights were and also the ... Read More
Great cruise, this was the last cruise for the band Alter Ego after this cruise they are disbanding. P&O Australia certainly has great entertainers on board and it was evident how well attended all the theme nights were and also the farewell show for the Alter Ego and the party afterwards in the blue room. What I like about P&O that not everything is fully scripted, they do the unexpected and that makes it great. The Aria. A great ship, décor is beautiful, The blue room, the 'Red Room' the furniture really beautiful. Having three non paying Restaurants besides the Pantry gives you so many options. We did the MDR, we did Angelos and we did Dragon Lady. They were all good. And that large pepper shaker. Staff on board was excellent in their service. I do not know what some people complain about when they travel with P&O Aust. I have done over 30 cruises on many different lines and I like them. You are welcomed if they know you by the staff like long lost friends. This trip was our first time to Hideaway Island. Snorkelling is very nice there although the coral is still recovering. Overall an excellent cruise and I look forward sailing on the Aria again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
Went on my first cruise and booked 12 months ago with a $1 deposit and had a wonderful cruise. Yes it’s a old ship and yes there are a few things that can be fixed but the ship was really great and the staff where nice and friendly and ... Read More
Went on my first cruise and booked 12 months ago with a $1 deposit and had a wonderful cruise. Yes it’s a old ship and yes there are a few things that can be fixed but the ship was really great and the staff where nice and friendly and always there to help. The embarkation was very smooth and was very quick. Got the ferry from darling Harbour to white bay and had a check in time at 1.30 and was on the ship about 2.pm We then had nice lunch at the pantry. Ate far to much food the whole time and had a free soft drink package which was great Disembarkation was also a breeze. Got up at 6 and had breakfast and was off the ship at 8.30. Weather was really unkind to us as we had really rough weather and the had to cancel Port Arthur and go around the west coast of Tasmania which was really nice Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
My friend and I made a spur of the moment decision during an art day. It was my first cruise and her third. We loved the edge activities, doing the zipline flying fox 3 times in a row and walking the plank. And the staff running the ... Read More
My friend and I made a spur of the moment decision during an art day. It was my first cruise and her third. We loved the edge activities, doing the zipline flying fox 3 times in a row and walking the plank. And the staff running the edge deserve huge huge accolades..they were amazing. We only used our cabin for showering, sleeping and dressing, so interior cabin was perfect. Very little motion and very comfortable beds. We enjoyed the Lady Dragon menu out of the 3 free restaurants and would pay to dine there. A wee hint if you are a red wine lover. The Waterfront has a good selection and I know my wine. There are a few bottles on the wine list that have a good pedigree and vintage. The price is very cheap. I bought a Margeret River Cab Sav 2013 for under $40 and this wine is worth $50 on special. Check the vintage before purchase. If you love coffee but don't want to spend a fortune bring good quality satchets because the pantry coffee is ..meh. The two things that were not so good were: There was virtually no cruise director. Passengers wandered aimlessly on the gatsby and white party nights. A lot of guests had no idea where or when. There is a guide to activities each day delivered to your room but nobody came on the PA to encourage activities or build excitement. The second thing was my art supplies going missing from my cabin. I had purchased new art pads, graphite pencils, pastel pencils and eraser. They were out near the bin due to me not wanting to forget them. On the last day of cruise my friend and I intended to relax and draw. But my art supplies were not in our cabin. After 2 hours of going back and forth and managing to keep my temper it transpired the steward had thrown them out. Very upsetting. They found the art supplies ..surprisingly in pristine condition but it was too late to use. I asked the steward why. He said they had been there for 3 days. I replied so had my makeup and clothes, but they didn't get thrown out. I asked him not to remove anything not in the bin in future. Aside from the above, my first cruise was stellar and we have booked a Melbourne Cup cruise on this vessel. How you spend your days onboard is up to you..there is so much to do you cannot get bored. Lastly..the nz icecream stand had the most surly attendant..he wins the rotten tomato award. But all other crew were amazing. Kitchen staff top marks in the pantry. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Chose this cruise for the value for money, the ship having been newly refurbished and wanted to tour the South Pacific.There were 8 of us in our group and our ages ranged from 24 to 73. We all loved our time on the ship and didn't ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the value for money, the ship having been newly refurbished and wanted to tour the South Pacific.There were 8 of us in our group and our ages ranged from 24 to 73. We all loved our time on the ship and didn't want our time to end. The restaurants The Waterfront, Dragon Lady and Angelos were delicious and had a great variety of food, all inclusive of the fare. I had a balcony room and it was a good size, we had terrific cabin stewards and the shower was always hot. The nightly entertainment was full of variety and alot of fun. The stage shows were awesome, the dancing, the singing and special effects were fantastic. The theme nights were heaps of fun too and we did alot of dancing those nights. During the day there were so many things to do, trivia, bingo, dance lessons, celebrity head, perfect match, cooking lessons....there was not enough time in the day or the week to do everything. Spent most time at the Oasis pool area and the drinks and music were great, very relaxing at the back of the ship watching the world go by. Mid ship is where the kids hung out in the pool but there were still heaps of lounge chairs available, whilst listening to some great music or watching a movie on the big screen. The Edge had heaps for the adventurer at heart but I really enjoyed the water slides. Finally the event staff were amazing, they were friendly, engaging, funny and they made our stay feel like we were part of one big happy family. Can't wait to cruise with P&O again. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Booked spur of the moment at a bargain price. Read mixed reviews in the past, so was a bit unsure of what to expect. But had a great time sailing around the Pacific islands. We have done around 20 cruises and have just gone back to ... Read More
Booked spur of the moment at a bargain price. Read mixed reviews in the past, so was a bit unsure of what to expect. But had a great time sailing around the Pacific islands. We have done around 20 cruises and have just gone back to P&O cruises this year 2017, to try out their new ships and found P&O have certainly upped their game. The food has improved greatly. Plenty of free restaurants to choose from such as the Asian Dragon lady, or the Italian Angelo's. The Pantry which used to be called the buffet, was very spacious, and the presentation and variety of food was excellent. We mostly ate in the Waterfront restaurant which did not disappoint. The cabins were on the small side. We asked the beds to be separated and made the cabin much more spacious. The entertainment from the guests performers to the P&O singers and dancers were first class, the stage productions were extremely well done. The Gatsby night was very popular, great atmosphere. We usually go with a around 8 friends. This cruise was just the two of us, we are in our 60's but had a relaxing, and sometimes hectic time, but very enjoyable. I found the Explorer had a mixed age group, great for families. With a section for 18+ only called the Oasis. Drinks were reasonably prices, beer around $6 and cocktails $12. The staff all over the ship were friendly, and attentive. Overall a great experience. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We took this cruise as it fell at a time we could both get time of work and get three days away. The cruise was not the first that we had been on, as a previous experience was had on the Carnival Spirit. I was a little hesitant at first ... Read More
We took this cruise as it fell at a time we could both get time of work and get three days away. The cruise was not the first that we had been on, as a previous experience was had on the Carnival Spirit. I was a little hesitant at first as I had read a large amount of negative press and ratings about this ship. Not sure why that was the case because our experience was sensational. The ship had just been dry docked for an extensive period and had had a complete overhaul to all public and common areas. The ship was very well presented and looked brand new. The cabins did not receive much upgrade during this period so they were a little tired looking but this was only due to the tremendous quality of the rest of the ship. We were booked into the dining rooms of the three restaurants on board for each dinner. These were just divine and the service was excellent. I would recommend doing this before you board. We had breakfast and lunch in the Pantry Buffet and the quality of the food was excellent. Our room stewards knew our name from the first moment we met and always greeted us with it each day. They serviced our cabins meticulously each and every day. I was so impressed with their manner and work ethic that we provided the two of them with a detailed commendation as part of the staff reward program. We had cruised once before on Carnival Spirit and were also very happy with that experience. I would cruise on the Pacific Explorer again tomorrow if I could get time off work. No doubt we will board this ship again in the future. Well done P and O and the Pacific Explorer. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We choose our cruises for the availability of when we want/can cruise and also very importantly, the destination. My brother had previously sailed on the Eden and had a wonderful experience on their first ever cruise, so I had no qualms ... Read More
We choose our cruises for the availability of when we want/can cruise and also very importantly, the destination. My brother had previously sailed on the Eden and had a wonderful experience on their first ever cruise, so I had no qualms about sailing on her, even after the negatives I had read on this site and Facebook. We do like our privacy and time on our own so we chose a suite for our accommodation, the fact that P&O are a cheaper cruise line than others we have cruised with, we were able to afford the extra for our suite, the suite amenities were excellent, the perks included; free laundry, room service breakfast, separate dressing room with ample cupboard space, priority embarking, disembarking and tenders. We ate in all of the restaurants except for Salt and enjoyed every morsel we ate. The Waterfront had a good selection and we always found something that appealed, we ate there for breakfast and lunch on most sea days. We also ate in the Pantry, but not as often although what we did eat there we couldn't fault, when we did choose to eat at the Pantry we usually took our meals back to our cabin and ate them there, I think seating can be a problem there during peak times. Salt Grill had very tasty burgers, hot dogs, pizza and my husband scoffed a whole bucket of prawns to himself, all for a nominal fee. Both speciality restaurants served gourmet food and the service was excellent, both menu's changed half way through the cruise. It is a good idea to book all your restaurants at the beginning of the cruise, quite a few people who didn't book were turned away during the cruise as the Waterfront was booked out. On the first day we went straight to the Monkey Bar and booked for the whole cruise. Plenty of on board activities, we participated in a few Trivia contests, Bingo and had a dabble in the Casino, the duty free shopping was also good, they had daily sales on watches, hand bags, wallets, jewellery, perfume and makeup. For the first time on a cruise I utilised the Spa, having my eyebrows and eyelashes tinted, waxing and a hair treatment. All of these services were excellent and a very reasonable price, although I did choose to go on days when they had discounts. All of the public areas, bars and seating areas were lovely, we found all of the bar staff to be friendly and we never ever waited more than a few minutes to be served. Entertainment was very good, we didn't go to all of the shows as some didn't appeal, but what did see was very entertaining. All of the ports we visited were amazing, we did the Alotau Cultural Festival in the morning and then my husband went on the Milne Bay WW2 tour in the afternoon. Kitava is a beautiful untouched island, no actual tours but the locals take you across to the smaller island on their sail boats, or you can take a walking tour to the skull caves. In Rabaul we did the half day Volcanic tour and it was fantastic, it included a visit to the Volcano Observatory, perched high on a hill where you get a fantastic view of the port and the Eden, it also takes you to the base of the volcano that blew in 1994, it is acutally a Caldera (super volcano). We didn't do a tour on Gizo, we had originally booked the Sanbis Resort tour but it was cancelled so we just walked around had a drink at the hotel and purchased some souvenir's. Honiara we walked outside the port terminal and picked up a tour with Manahem tours, excellent, it cost 100AUD for the both of us, we had our own tour guide and driver in a late model van which was air conditioned, they also supplied water and coconut water, they took us to where we wanted to go, which really appealed to us. We came across a few serial whingers on the cruise, who were never going to be satisfied but you get that on any cruise. All cruises are what you make of them. P&O go out of their way to help, we met a lady who's luggage went astray, (Virgin was her airline and they couldn't care two hoots) it didn't turn up until our last port Honiara, the ship sent a crew member to the airport there to collect it for her, they also let her choose some clothing and items from the shop for free. It seems her luggage was put on the wrong flight and sent to Canada!!!!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
We had heard some not great reviews of P&O, but loved the idea of PNG as a destination. We have cruised four times before and we thought P&O was great. We loved the Australian feel of the ship, the smaller size, awesome ... Read More
We had heard some not great reviews of P&O, but loved the idea of PNG as a destination. We have cruised four times before and we thought P&O was great. We loved the Australian feel of the ship, the smaller size, awesome entertainment, great dining choices, and great kids club. We chose to eat in the Waterfront or specialty restaurants for most meals where we found the food really good. Service was mixed....some people were very attentive and others not so much. Salt really was exceptional and worth the surcharge. We are vegetarian and always found at least a couple of options we could choose. The Pantry was okay and I liked the Asian and Indian stations. Sometimes seating was hard to come by. Everything we ate there was delicious. Our kids loved going to Kids Club each day and did all the Edge activities as well, which were huge highlights. We were lucky in that we were able to get to each of our 4 ports in PNG. Tendering service was slow the first day (it was rough), but more efficient the other days. We thought the entertainment was really great with a variety of bands, singers, and productions each night. The main areas of the ship were modern and bright. I particularly loved the soft loungers by the pool and the comfy seating on that deck. We were super impressed with our first cruise experience with kids and would definitely sail with P&O again. You can read our full review of our itinerary here: https://www.5losttogether.com/papua-new-guinea-cruise-tips-ports/ Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
Local friends of ours found an amazing promotional rate for this short term cruise and so we decided to join them. We were a little apprehensive as we had heard the line had a reputation for party makers and could get a little rough but ... Read More
Local friends of ours found an amazing promotional rate for this short term cruise and so we decided to join them. We were a little apprehensive as we had heard the line had a reputation for party makers and could get a little rough but our cruise was nothing like this. Embarkation was quick, friendly and efficient as was disembarkation - which was also the most relaxed we have experienced with a nice late morning departure. The ship is obviously quite old and my guess is it is an old HAL ship as it has a gorgeous complete promenade which is very wide and a great quiet spot to watch the ocean from. We were in an inside cabin which was a decent size with plenty of storage. The bed was very comfortable. I didn't like the shower design and the water temperature was very inconsistent (read boiling or freezing), while we were lucky our friends and others experienced numerous pluming issues and many of the public toilets were often closed. The interior public spaces had obviously had a refit and were the decor was superb - especially in the dining and bar areas. Dining was reasonable depending on where you ate and what you ordered. Typically we found simple dishes like salads, roasts etc done very well whereas Asian dishes in particular tended to be very ordinary. Make sure you get reservations for the main dining room and the complimentary specialty restaurants. We loved the Italian, thought the Asian was just ok (but liked the space and service). The main restaurant was a nice area especially for lunch. The buffet was an interesting concept more like a food court, unfortunately we found the food to be plain and didn't eat here very often.Service was very good throughout. Our only port was Fraser Island and unfortunately due to mechanical issues we didn't make it but the ship gave everyone obc as compensation and most found it fair and there were very few complainers. In fact by mooring in Hervey Bay we got to see whales and dolphins while enjoying a few "complimentary" beverages due to our obc. Entertainment was reasonably good, the singers and dancers were enthusiastic and the stage design and costumes were some of the best we have seen. Unfortunately there is no live orchestra but there were plenty of live musical acts around the ship. The guest comedian was not funny at all unless you simply like to hear swearing replacing punch lines. There were more activities on this ship than any other we have been on (and I thought NCL was amazing in this aspect). You could not have been bored. There were numerous parties held, trivia, arts and crafts lessons, silly sports and loads of dance classes (which we loved). This ship was great for those who like to do things or socialise. 2 pool areas, full promenade deck, crows nest bar, multiple restaurants and several bars made it a fun ship to explore. Would probably try again but still concerned by its reputation out of the bigger ports on longer itineraries. Think we were lucky with our fellow passengers (very few troublemakers). Bravo to the wonderful crew (proves inclusive tipping doesn't detract from service levels and if anything improves them) and the well designed ship. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
This was my first cruise, and it was fantastic, could not fault anything at all, . the 1st night we dined in the Dragon Lady and it was very nice, next night was at Angelos (Italian ) again very nice, the rest of the cruise we dined in ... Read More
This was my first cruise, and it was fantastic, could not fault anything at all, . the 1st night we dined in the Dragon Lady and it was very nice, next night was at Angelos (Italian ) again very nice, the rest of the cruise we dined in the Water front restaurant , and this was lovely, a 3 course meal every night and food was very well presented, and tasted great, The waiters were very friendly and helpful, most nights we had Franky as our waiter, and he was lovely, we went to Charlies for coffee and sometimes cake, each day and that was a lovely place to sit and relax and enjoy a nice coffee and the cakes were really yummy, the crew there were very friendly and went out of their way to make our time relaxing and enjoyable, The entertainment was fantastic, we went to the show each night and shows were great some night and absolutely spectacular other nights, there were plenty of bars around the ship, I spent a lot of time in the ocean bar on deck 7 at nights listening to piano melodies with Nicholas Gentile, a very talented young man with a beautifull voice, plenty of comfortable seating, or you could sit up or lie down in the window seats, and just relax with the music or with a book, went to several of the trivia events, and played bingo, that was really good, the guys doing the bingo made it so much fun, there was a over 18 section to relax in the pool and hot tubs, we went there most days and it was very relaxing, we had the refreshment drinks package, which we purchased before sailing, this was great, we got all the bottled water we needed, mocktails which were really yummy, and juices, and lots of coffee, had caramel lattee's every day which we could get at any of the resturants or bars, had breakfast at the waterfront some days the rest of the time at the pantry, which had something for everyone . would definatly recommend P&O to anyone Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
Was worried about going PO after reading some comments but cannot understand why folk do not like the line we had a wonderful time food fantastic staff wonderful entertainment wonderful cannot wait to do again. Embarkation to all ports ran ... Read More
Was worried about going PO after reading some comments but cannot understand why folk do not like the line we had a wonderful time food fantastic staff wonderful entertainment wonderful cannot wait to do again. Embarkation to all ports ran smoothly and the service on board and cabin crews we wonderful. We are seniors who went at school holiday time but the kids on board were well controlled and never caused us any problems. The entertainment staff were out of this world and so friendly when even not on duty not full of their own importance but very down to earth. Really loved the whole trip. We were very lucky to even meet some of the bridge crew and they were delightful very happy to talk to you and answer questions. Some folk sit there like stuffed dummies and complain about everything but a holiday is what you put into it yourself as well as staff trying to please you. We had some illness on board but the staff responded to it fantastically and it did not spread so thank you to all the staff for their quick response. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
I can not fault our cruise to Cairns with family. One member of the family had a dietary request and every day her needs were looked after by wonderful staff. This made our cruise as this was our main concern. The entertainment, and ... Read More
I can not fault our cruise to Cairns with family. One member of the family had a dietary request and every day her needs were looked after by wonderful staff. This made our cruise as this was our main concern. The entertainment, and other dining restaurants were all beautiful. Our cabin was clean everyday. Our 8 year old grandson enjoyed all the entertainment and pool facilities. Next time I will save for the beauty treatments at the Elemis Health and Beauty Salon. They really pamper you and take so much more time to give you a wonderful experience more so than on land. I had 4 acupuncture treatments for a sore shoulder which helped in the healing of my shoulder. One is more inclined to enjoy this pampering whilst on a vacation and relaxed. It was satisfying to have a Security person in charge of the swimming to avoid accidents. Thank you P&O for a wonderful holiday. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
We did the P&O Explorer Barrier Reef Discovery 10-night trip 30th August to 9th September. It was our first ever cruise, we’ve never done one before. Departing Sydney, stopping at Airlie Beach, Cairns, Port Douglas and Brisbane ... Read More
We did the P&O Explorer Barrier Reef Discovery 10-night trip 30th August to 9th September. It was our first ever cruise, we’ve never done one before. Departing Sydney, stopping at Airlie Beach, Cairns, Port Douglas and Brisbane before returning to Sydney. We chose this cruise because it was close to home (we’re from New Zealand) and the dates fitted in with our work commitments. We booked back in late January through our travel agent, our deal included the premium drinks package. We don’t drink alcohol but thought it would be worth it for the espresso coffees and soft drinks. We chose a mini-suite to give us our own balcony and a bit more room. We chose room 10079, as it was mid-ship and fairly close to the foreward lifts. I was a bit apprehensive before we left as there seemed to be a lot of talk on social media about problems with the sewage system on the ship. However I decided to ignore that and make up our own mind once we got on board – plus there was much excitement and anticipation as embarkation day drew closer as it was something we’d never done before. We flew to Sydney the day before, and stayed at the Intercontinental in Macquarie Street (recommended by our travel agent). We had a 12th floor room with a view over the harbour and bridge, so we saw the Pacific Explorer arrive just as daylight appeared. It was a magnificent sight and added to the excitement. The hotel was very close to Circular Quay so we walked with our luggage and arrived at the Overseas Passenger Terminal on embarkation day at 10.30am. With a mini-suite we had priority boarding and could board any time from 11am to 3pm. We dropped off our bags at the bag drop off easily enough. Embarkation was a bit chaotic, as it was not clear which line was for priority passengers. Once we’d checked in we had to wait for a while in the large seating area, then we went through security and before we knew it we were onboard. We went straight to our cabin. We were really pleased with it. It was very roomy and there was a separate small lounge area with access to the bedroom through an archway. The bathroom had two entrances, from the main cabin entrance a door led into the toilet and handbasin then there was a wooden louvered door which led into the marble shower and spa bath area. The shower was full sized with a glass door. The toiletries were Moh brand. There was liquid soap on the handbasin, liquid body wash and shampoo/conditioner in the shower. Plus we had four little tubes of shampoo, conditioner, body wash and body lotion as well. There was no cake of soap, I’m not sure if they had them available or not, I had brought some from the hotel with me. We had plenty of thick white towels. There was a little dressing room/storage area which meant we could hang our clothes and store the suitcases out of the way. We had a table and two chairs and two footstools on the balcony, which ran the width of our cabin. While the cabin had not been refurbished, it was very clean and tidy, and the bed and pillows were very comfortable. Our cabin stewards Edward and Jinky were very nice and friendly. The public areas of the ship had all been refurbished and were very swanky. There were lots of cafés and bars all over the place. There were also lots of different seating areas, so you could sit somewhere one day and somewhere else the next, and feel like you were in a completely different area. We tried several of the restaurants: The Pantry; Angelo’s; The Waterfront and Lukes. We used The Waterfront for both breakfasts and dinners some days, and The Pantry for all three meals over the ten day period. We dined at Angelo’s three times (it was only open for dinner). The only food we paid extra for was a burger from Luke’s on the pool deck ($5.00 for a nice burger). We didn’t see the need to pay extra for Shell and Bones or A Taste of Salt – we were very happy with the food and service at the other venues. The serving staff at The Pantry were very friendly, as were the waiting staff at Angelo’s and The Waterfront. We thought the food was very good at all venues. Lots of variety in The Pantry. The only thing we found with The Pantry is that on sea days it can get very crowded, but since it’s open long hours you can time it so that you get there when there’s not many others. There is always lots of things to do on the ship on the “at sea” days. We did a digital photography session with Ollie from the photo shop. That was very good. He also did a GoPro session later in the cruise, that was so good that we bought one later that day. It turned out to be a very good price, we’re really pleased with it. We did a couple of the trivia quizzes – they were a lot of fun plus we won one of them and got free coffee and cake! We also joined a group for Pictionary that was fun. We borrowed a couple of books from the library and they also had packs of cards for loan. Regarding the premium drinks package: it was completely wasted on us as we don’t drink alcohol. Being first timers we were a bit green and would not make the same mistake again. We had thought that we would be able to use the package for our espresso coffees, but they were excluded. I’m not sure exactly what the package cost us as it was part of the deal, but if we bought it prior to the trip it would have been $79 per person per day…that adds up to $1580 for both of us. I realise that the package deal price would be less than $79/day, but it would still be far more than we could drink in soft drink per day. However, we will be sure to look into “deals” more next time. Let me state that we had NO ISSUES at all with our toilet. A couple of the cubicles in the public areas were out of order, and once or twice we got a whiff of sewage, but only once or twice. I think one of the problems is people putting stuff down the toilets that block it – there are very clear signs saying that only toilet paper from the ship is to be used in the toilet. We were told one person dropped a hand towel into the toilet and tried to flush it – well guess what, it blocked the whole system. We chose to do no shore tours. There was enough on the ship to keep us busy (or not, the whole idea of the cruise was for us to relax). In fact we didn’t even enter the casino once, though we had thought we’d have a flutter at some stage. We simply didn’t get around to it. On the port days there was hardly anyone around on the ship, it was great. We only took in one show (“Rave On”, with the talented Jeremy Stanford singing some great Buddy Holly numbers). There were several others that we thought about going to, but we found we enjoyed relaxing in the evening after dinner in our room or out on our balcony. It was lovely sitting outside as the sun went down and the sky darkened. We were blessed with wonderful weather apart from the last day when it was very windy and quite rough. Disembarking was a breeze. We had breakfast in The Waterfront, then disembarked around 8.30am (we had priority “any time” disembarkation). Our bags, which we had left outside our door the previous night, were easily retrievable from the lineup of other priority bags in the terminal. So for our first cruise we were pretty happy with everything. We found ten days just the right length of time. We will probably go on another cruise in the next couple of years. Would happily consider P&O again. It will be a matter of booking a cruise which suits our timing and our wallets. We definitely would look for a deal that doesn’t include an alcohol package – it’s just not worth it for us personally. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
This was our very first cruise as most of our holidays are camping holidays. This was a 10 day cruise along the Queensland coast. We were told you will either love it or hate and we absolutely loved it. Getting on and of the ship was ... Read More
This was our very first cruise as most of our holidays are camping holidays. This was a 10 day cruise along the Queensland coast. We were told you will either love it or hate and we absolutely loved it. Getting on and of the ship was relatively easy and did not take much time at all. The ship is well laid out but it does take a few days to work out where everything is. Our cabin was an interior cabin and perhaps on the small side for some. There was just enough room to walk around the double bed, but the bed was very comfortable. Never spent much time in our room except to sleep. Plenty of storage to put your clothes away. Toilet and shower worked as they should and had no problems. Room stewarts were great and always very friendly. Rooms were cleaned twice a day and fresh towels everyday if you desired. We only dined in the restaurants that were included in the cruise package. The Pantry had lots of variety and all hot food was served up for you and you could have as much or as little as you wanted. Some food stations did alter their menu from day to day but lunch and dinner were basically the same. And no the food was not kept in there for the next 6 to 8 hours. When lunch time was over it was all packed away replaced by cakes or pastries and brought out again at dinner time. Great variety of desserts every day. The Waterfront restaurant had a great breakfast, lunch and dinner menu which was changed halfway the cruise. Did enjoy the breakfast much better here then the pantry, just because of the personal service. The Asian Dragon Lady and Italian Angelos were a great destination for dinner, giving you a 3 course dinner. We did dine more often at Angelos only because our friends preferred it but both have great menus which also changed halfway the cruise. Staff in all the restaurants were absolutely terrific. I am no foodie but enjoyed all the meals thoroughly. I am a very big eater and left all the restaurants satisfied. Did not do many of the shore tours as we were lucky enough a few years ago to visit Cairns and Port Douglas and did all the tourist things then. Only did barramundi fishing at Port Douglas which wasn't long enough but hey it never is when I go out fishing.All tours seemed well organised with tenders or bus transfers. Disembarkation obviously did take a little longer when tenders were required but the overall process was pretty much pain free. People doing shore tours got first preference to disembark but that is only natural because of tome constraints. Plenty of on board activities from trivia to musical shows, comedy and the like. Had to pay a small fee for the Love Riot show which was well worth it. Was never found wanting for anything to do. Information was left in your cabin for the next day activities? The entertainment staff were terrific, very approachable and very funny. If I didn't mentioned it before, the wait staff especially in Angelos were great and we left like we were old mates. Overall we had a great time. Travelled with three other couples and we all enjoyed ourselves thouroughly. Would definitely cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
My wife found a great deal on GrabOne, $1860 NZ for us and our 15 yr old son, including our flights from Auckland to Sydney. Had to put down $1300 to secure our booking, and paid the balance by around a month before disembarking. I ... Read More
My wife found a great deal on GrabOne, $1860 NZ for us and our 15 yr old son, including our flights from Auckland to Sydney. Had to put down $1300 to secure our booking, and paid the balance by around a month before disembarking. I happened to be dining next to an apparently wealthy couple who had been on numerous cruise liners, and said our cruise was the roughest they've been on, due to the heavy swells between Australia and New Zealand at this time of year, and the fact we were not long behind a storm. My wife was bed-ridden for about the first half of the journey, and the ship ran out too soon of wrist bands to help counter it, so be prepared before you board. My biggest lesson learned? Have fun as much as possible. I didn't make of the most of EVERY opportunity to DANCE!!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Pacific Eden has just returned from a multi million dollar refurbishment, mainly of the public areas. The results are stunning. Fresh and vibrant colours and quirky but interesting artworks. I was expecting something of a much lower ... Read More
Pacific Eden has just returned from a multi million dollar refurbishment, mainly of the public areas. The results are stunning. Fresh and vibrant colours and quirky but interesting artworks. I was expecting something of a much lower standard (which would have been fine as it is a P&O ship, not Princess or Cunard after all). Upon first boarding it was hard not to say "wow- that is nice" upon entering every new public area. Boarding in Cairns - efficient (although we had priority as a suite guest, the queues were well controlled and moved quickly) The Suite (10011) - the largest most spacious cabin I have ever been in. Plenty of room around the beds, coffee table that converts to a dining table inside and balcony dining table for 4 as well as two loungers, Large ensuite with spa bath, new looking carpet (the rest of the furnishings were still a bit dated but this did not bother me as overall the impression was good). Public areas (bars, lounges, dining rooms, auditorium, atrium) - all refurbished and a delight to be in and to walk around (pictures attached) Food - generally of good standard. I can see some people would complain about certain specific meals but if you choose wisely from the menu the quality was generallly great with just a few misses. The specialty restaurants were all great but hard to get a booking for some unless you are a suite priority booking passenger or prepared to queue at 6.30am each day. No need for bookings at the main restaurant Waterfront. We just rocked up and got a table straight away when we did not have bookings elsewhere but recommend you do so at 5.15 or 7.15pm which is the two main sitting times (although it is available at any time during the dinner and breakfast and is open for lunch on sea days. Chef's Table - I would highly recommend, especially early on in the voyage as this then introduces you to the chef and maitre' d and can unlock doors for the rest of the trip. 7 course degustation of very high quality food and wines with generous pours (virtually bottomless top shelf wine for the whole 3 hours) at just $99 pp. There was room for plenty more Chefs table bookings on our cruise - it is held subject to 12 bookings per night but was only held on about every 2nd night due to lack of demand on our voyage Entertainment - the 3 main musical acts we frequented were all fantastic and played often in a variety of venues. Highly Strung (similar to the Coors), Willowspeak (solo accoustic guitar with a wide variety of pop songs and a great personality), and Karowayova (sp?) a Kiriwina local who has moved to Australia and has the most divine singing voice and some great songs she wrote herself. The ship's singers and dancers and band were also very good - better than most cruises I have been on. Itinerary - Alotau - Least favourite of the stops but still interesting. It was Commemoration day public holiday so the shops and markets were closed until midday but still plenty of things to see within an easy walk of the ship. Hundreds of private tour operators touting for business just outside the wharf, a few nice bars to sit and relax nearby in the resorts. Kitava - unfortunately turned into a sea day due to poor weather Rabaul - Great stop. We did a private prearranged snorkel tour with Rabaul-Kokopo Dive. We were picked up at the ship, had a high speed boat trip close past the volcano to a dolphin area (35 minutes) to be towed beside the tenders amongst the playing dolphins with supplied snorkel and mask, then taken to a sunken WWII Japanese zero plane wreck still in good condition just below the surface. Some of the clearest water and most interesting unspoiled coral you will find anywhere. Dropped off at their HQ for lunch at Rapopo Resort and we stayed relaxing at the resort until a tender took us back to the ship just before final boarding. Others in our group took a half day bus tour with them to see the highlights of Rabaul. If you have nothing planned, again there are hundreds of private tour operators touting just outside the terminal Kiriwina Island - Due to the steep drop off from the fringing reef, we anchored about 100 metres from shore. An impressive sight with the ship so close to the beach that the ship's wifi even still worked fine on the beach. A large friendly local community greeted us warmly with local markets, performances, escorted village walking tours etc and again great snorkeling on the edge of the reef in crystal clear waters. This was the best stop for picking up a wide variety of crafted souveniers (although we missed Kitava which could have been equally as good). Best to use Kina and if you have too many Kina remaining for the remainder of the itinerary, they were very eager to exchange Aussie Dollars at a very good exchange rate 2:1. Conflict Islands - this would have turned into another sea day due to the strong SE wind, but the island has just completed a new floating 320 metre pontoon jetty on the Western side out over the coral reef, and we were the first ship to try it out. A big thanks to the captain who positioned the ship off the jetty with the bow and stern thrusters all day (too deep to anchor) and gave us the chance to experience this amazing coral atoll island. It is privately owned by an Australian conservationist, so they preferred Aussie Dollars (exchanged for vouchers to buy food drinks, etc when you step ashore). Great beaches, plenty of shade, a nice walk around the whole island (about 5 KM) where we got to see how rough it was at the Eastern wharf and why we would not even be there were it not for the new Western wharf. Food was so-so (purchase BBQ, stale buns etc) but purchase drinks readily available and lots of extra activities to purchase if you were looking for other things to do. Doini Island - Much smaller than Kiriwina so a more intimate setting with very friendly locals selling their (more limited) wares. Lots of school children performing dances and singing with a pleasing very generous amount of donations coming forth from the cruise passengers (last stop so a chance to offload any remaining Kina). Well developed bar with toilets and a small gift shop at the tender wharf for resting and listening to a local band playing. Good snorkelling off the easiest access beach of the cruise (no fringing reef to get over, just a lot of isolated bombora reefs, mostly unspoilt and close to the surface) Disembarkation - The Cairns terminal is very small so baggage claim can be congested, and due to the large number of passengers buying wooden and shell artifacts, customs was very busy with a long queue. It is fine to bring wood and shell products back into Aus as long as they are clean and free of any visible signs of insects. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
I chose this cruise as it went to Apia however after booking that port was cancelled and we went to SavuSavu instead. It took 2 hours to get onboard as we queued and then when we got close to the entrance we were told to get out of the ... Read More
I chose this cruise as it went to Apia however after booking that port was cancelled and we went to SavuSavu instead. It took 2 hours to get onboard as we queued and then when we got close to the entrance we were told to get out of the queue as we were one hour early. So one of our party rejoined the end of the queue and when he got to the entrance he called us over and we barged past the lady checking the times on the e tickets. We then queued for our sea passes and then took seats and waited to be called by number. Note there are no toilets or water available while you queue outside in the hot sun. They only had two xray security machines for 1500 people and this caused another long queue. There are also steps inside the terminal before you reach the machines. Once on board our cabin was great # 4128 midships on the bottom deck. It was an inside cabin and very quite. Our cabin stewards greeted us and ran off to find a small fridge for my medicine and a mattress topper for my bed as I have a bad back. Both of which were pre booked well in advance and should have been in the cabin when we arrived. P&O let us down badly in that regard. The cabin stewards were wonderful and nothing was too much trouble. They both gave more than 100% and were very friendly and chatty. The food on board was fantastic and we rotated through all three free restaurants each evening. The only change the menu once a week but in the Waterfront (main dining room) they add in a theme night each night, so you may get French, Mexican or Korean etc. We ate at The Pantry for lunch on the days we were in port as the Waterfront is closed for lunch, otherwise we ate there for Breakfast and Lunch every day except the day we got off as the queues at the Waterfront were far too long. There is no room service that morning. Breakfast in The Pantry was fine. We didn't eat at SALT as there was a $49 fee plus $2 for each oyster and another $22 for Lobster. We did hear great reports from those that did eat there. I never saw anyone eat at the Chefs Table which looks like a Boardroom. The Public Areas are all very tastefully furnished with great carpets, except for the hall ways in the cabin areas. Both Pools are freezing cold (even in Summer) and the two spas are boiling hot. I got heart palpitations after only 10 minutes on the one and only time that I used one. The Staff are fantastic in all areas of the ship but I can't say the same for some of the passengers, some of whom berated the staff and spoke to the staff as if they were less than nothing, but on most occasions other passengers told them to shut up as the staff can't stick up for themselves. The ship was full of whingers but I have found that on every other cruise that I have been on. The worst thing was that Type A flu swept through the ship and lots of people got very ill. I am still ill a week or so after getting off as are lots of our friends who we made on board.We did our own thing in each Port and caught a water taxi in Port Vila and in one Port a tourist bus. There were always plenty of Taxis touting for your business. The Shore Tours sold on board are really expensive but we did hear great reports from those that used them. Getting off the ship was fine. You have to vacate your cabin by 8.30am then pick up your duty free and wait in a designated lounge until your number is called. We were due off of at 10.10am and were called at 10.20am. However once off the nightmare of passport control and customs and fighting to find your luggage begins. There are those stairs again and you have to cross a lane way from one building to another as you pass through a truck arrival area. They also close off about 50% of the main car to allow trucks through to the ship. Also the passengers getting off have to run the gauntlet of those arriving early to go onboard for the next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Was a bit apprehensive before the trip as I wasn't sure about the hole cruise thing. The Pacific Dawn was a spacious comfortable ship with lots to do. The cabin was a window twin cabin. It was spacious and clean with a wardrobe, safe, ... Read More
Was a bit apprehensive before the trip as I wasn't sure about the hole cruise thing. The Pacific Dawn was a spacious comfortable ship with lots to do. The cabin was a window twin cabin. It was spacious and clean with a wardrobe, safe, tv, phone, and fridge. There was an ensuite which was small but adequate. Regi and Nathaniel were our room stewards and seemed to work endlessly. They were very friendly and nice people. The dining options were good. Don't expect Michelin star restaurants, but the food and service was good for the cost of the cruise. There were shows and musical entertainment in various parts of the ship every day and it was of a good standard. The service onboard was efficient and very friendly, although the bartenders seemed a little overwhelmed at times. The Pacific Island Hopper visited Noumea, Lifou Island and Port Vila. There were plenty of tours you could pre book on board and also when you goy ashore you could book then. It was a very enjoyable trip. So good in fact, we booked another cruise before we left. Highly recommended. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Was a bit worried after reading a few negative reviews for the Pacific Jewel. We booked a 9 night cruise to the South Pacific islands during the school holidays. From the minute we got on to the minute we got off, we had a great time. The ... Read More
Was a bit worried after reading a few negative reviews for the Pacific Jewel. We booked a 9 night cruise to the South Pacific islands during the school holidays. From the minute we got on to the minute we got off, we had a great time. The ship is in excellent condition, nice decor and very clean. Service from the staff on board was terrific. Our cabin steward, Sanjay, was very attentive and kept our cabin ship shape! The waiters were very polite and gave great service. There is so much entertainment on board that you can choose to do or not to do. Our cabin was great. A lot of hanging space with hangers and loads of drawers. The dining areas were excellent, from the Waterfront Restaurant to The Pantry, food was excellent. We ate at Luke Mangin's Salt Grill, and had to pay for this, but was so worth it. $49 per head for an amazing 3 course meal.I would recommend it highly. Entertainment was very good and plenty of it. All I can say if someone goes on this ship and does not have a great time or experience, it would be their own fault! Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
After over 100 cruises i thought i was all cruised out , and after a very disappointing Emerald Princess cruise in February , i thought that's it for me . BUT , I went on the Pacific Jewel in early June . 8 days to Melanesia . ... Read More
After over 100 cruises i thought i was all cruised out , and after a very disappointing Emerald Princess cruise in February , i thought that's it for me . BUT , I went on the Pacific Jewel in early June . 8 days to Melanesia . What a fabulous 8 days . Embarkation in Sydney,Circular Quay was very ,very organised . The ship was looking a little tired , but oh so clean & the staff all looked as if they were enjoying having us on board . The food in the Waterfront dining room & the new look Pantry [ buffet ] was 1 st class ,i didn't hear one person complain about any of the food , service or lack of seating. well done to the hotel director & restaurant manager & all the serving staff . My cabin 9201 was the best cabin i have had for a loooooong time , no noise ,vibration or uncleanliness. just perfect . I will be asking for this cabin when i go on the jewel again in sept . The 2 main bars were well attended , staff great , and the entertainment 1st class . The MIX Cocktail bar was a bit disappointing , i usually frequent this bar regulary on other P&O ships , but this ship it was just a counter . 6 stools & a few tables/ chairs in the atrium , surrounded by retail shops & sale tables . like having a drink in a busy shopping centre . All the entertainment was up to standard & above thruout the cruise . Cabin staff on deck 9 were very attentive & conscientious, quiet & thorough, thanks guys . A perfect cruise for me & has triggered my love for cruising again . Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
This was our first cruise and I was really worried, due to the reviews that I had read. I was absolutely pleasantly surprised how fantastic the cruise was. None of the reviews that I had read previously, applied to our experience. Cabin ... Read More
This was our first cruise and I was really worried, due to the reviews that I had read. I was absolutely pleasantly surprised how fantastic the cruise was. None of the reviews that I had read previously, applied to our experience. Cabin was great, bedding was comfy, food was fantastic, even though we only ate at the pantry, but I have to say, probably the best fish and chips I have ever eaten. Entertainment was fantastic. The only thing that might have room for improvement, would be the smoking sections. There could me more of them and some chairs might be good. Otherwise I thoroughly enjoyed the cruise and the ship and would definitely go again. Also I have to say embarkation and disembarkation worked like clockwork and so well organised. Onto the ship within 5 - 10 minutes and off the ship within 5 minutes. The services staff was also very helpful and friendly. Service with a smile!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
My wife and I have just returned from from a wonderful ten day cruise to New Caledonia on the newly refurbished Pacific Explorer. Being the first cruise for the crew and staff on this ship we were expecting to see some teething problems, ... Read More
My wife and I have just returned from from a wonderful ten day cruise to New Caledonia on the newly refurbished Pacific Explorer. Being the first cruise for the crew and staff on this ship we were expecting to see some teething problems, however we we were completely surprised at how smoothly the whole cruise went from the embarkation to disembarkation. This was our seventh cruise and have sailed on P&O , Princess, and Royal Caribbean and have to say it was one of the best cruises we have been on. The fresh decor in the public areas was lovely and comfortable, all new sun lounges on deck areas made lounging by the pool very pleasant. Dining areas are the biggest improvement, we should know as we have previously sailed on this ship when it was the Dawn Princes. Waterfront Restaurant was warm and inviting, friendly attentive staff and good food. Dragon Lady Asian restaurant had beautiful intimate decor great food and staff. Angelo's Italian Restaurant was equally good. Menus in all three restaurants changed several times during the cruise. The Buffet now called the Pantry was fresh with a great selection of food and delicious cakes which varied regularly. Entertainment was great with several brand new shows. Our cabin was an inside cabin and this was a little on the small side, however it was quite adequate with a very comfortable bed, brand new linen and pillows. Our cabin steward was fantastic. You need to remember this is a twenty year old ship so there are some areas of the ship that are showing its age. New water slides and water park seemed to be a big hit with the kids. To sum up this is a great family ship and would recommend it to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Coming from NZ it was easy to fly to Sydney, hop on board and see more of Australia. We were well looked after by the crew, found the activities on board catered for most people and the entertainment was great as there were choices. You ... Read More
Coming from NZ it was easy to fly to Sydney, hop on board and see more of Australia. We were well looked after by the crew, found the activities on board catered for most people and the entertainment was great as there were choices. You were able to do as much or as little as you wanted and you would have to be very fussy to not enjoy something. I realise the ship is older but as far as we could see it is being kept in good condition. A small problem we had in our cabin was fixed quickly and with no hassles. Food was good, the variety was there and although smaller servings in Waterfront you did have the option of more if you required it. Once again we feel only very fussy people could have complained about the food - I know there were a few of those on board. For our 5th cruise we had only one complaint - fresh whole fruit would have been great if available. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
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