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54 South Pacific Fitness Cruise Reviews

Very hard-working crew but simply too many people on the ship. At capacity of 3,700 guests, queues remained way too long for food, activities and tendering. Two small, cold pools (one adult only) completely insufficient for number on board ... Read More
Very hard-working crew but simply too many people on the ship. At capacity of 3,700 guests, queues remained way too long for food, activities and tendering. Two small, cold pools (one adult only) completely insufficient for number on board and space outdoors and undercover are scarce. Kids/Teens clubs were inaccessible and poor. Visible signs of recent renovation were not obvious – still looked like an older, tired ship with incredibly gaudy, outdated décor catering to an American market. Continued hard sell (on spa, wellbeing packages, photography, alcohol) throughout the trip and unending pestering on guest surveys in the final days. This was our first time on a cruise and we were so disappointed by the experience of the crowds and feeling jammed in like sardines. Perhaps a common cruise experience out there however was definitely unexpected and therefore unpleasant. We will sadly and clearly be telling our family and friends not to ever book a holiday with Carnival. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
1. The crew were fantastic, Rai looked after our cabin really well and kept it nice and clean, Deck 9 Marian and Sukra were awesome, Marian was always flat out cleaning up and Sukra was very attentive in brining me drinks. 2. Cabin was ... Read More
1. The crew were fantastic, Rai looked after our cabin really well and kept it nice and clean, Deck 9 Marian and Sukra were awesome, Marian was always flat out cleaning up and Sukra was very attentive in brining me drinks. 2. Cabin was a bit squishy in 1132 and hard for my mother to access with a disability and the wheel chair didn't fit. 3. The ship was beautiful. 4. The food on deck 9 was not the greatest, dry for the best over cooked and not hot. Emporer dinning was restaurant quality food and the staff were awesome. 5. The Island's were beautiful, I really loved Isle of Pines and Mystery Island, Villa was great shopping and even better duty free. 6. Alcohol was far to expansive, didn't really impress me much and internet well over priced. 7. Overall not to bad and I did have a ball Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
this cruise was amazing, coming with one side of the family it was a fantastic trip. Everyone was always occupied and the activities couldn't have been better. There were lots of shows to watch and parties to go to. Our room was a bit ... Read More
this cruise was amazing, coming with one side of the family it was a fantastic trip. Everyone was always occupied and the activities couldn't have been better. There were lots of shows to watch and parties to go to. Our room was a bit small, but our room stewards couldn't have been better. Every day there were great activities on for the whole family, which varied from White parties to Gatsby dance classes. The food in the pantry was pretty good, but could have been better if there was a bigger range. The pizza restaurant on level 8 served amazing food, and so did Dragon Lady (level 5), the only disappointing part was that it cost more to eat at these places.Our cruise travelled to Noumea, Maré, Lifou and Isle of Pines. This trip had been going smoothly until day 6 when the weather in Maré was miserable, as it was raining all day, when we reached Isle of Pines the following day (the last island) we were told that we weren't going to be getting off the ship due to the swell. The rocking of the boat was definitely noticeable throughout most of the trip but sailing with P & O Pacific Explorer was great!. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We are not new to cruising as this was our 15th cruise but the first with Oceania. We were attracted to Oceania because of the French Polynesia itinerary as well as its reputation for good service and food. We absolutely loved the ... Read More
We are not new to cruising as this was our 15th cruise but the first with Oceania. We were attracted to Oceania because of the French Polynesia itinerary as well as its reputation for good service and food. We absolutely loved the itinerary as well as the very good service by our cabin staff and butler as well as the food in the specialty restaurants. However, we found that the added costs were not compensated by our expectations for value. To begin, we were very disappointed by how we were received upon boarding as well as departing. Our experience with other cruise lines has been that we were greeted with a welcoming drink as well as food available. Likewise, upon departure, we have been provided with coffee and muffins/danish etc. None of this was available on the Marina. We arrived with 200+ people on our 8 hour overseas flight. There was no welcoming drink and by the time we checked in, all food services were shut down. One would think that a table of refreshments would have been provided by the ship. Similarly, upon departing at an early hour (5:40 am), that coffee and a muffin could also have been provided. This was neither a good first or last impression of the cruise. As part of our booking, we were provided with free unlimited internet access. This was a total joke since access was not available in most parts of the ship. Moreover, it was impossible to upload or download photos or documents. Finally, it was impossible to contact others via FaceTime or Skype. On all of our other cruises, this was never a problem, I then learned that for an added $15/day, I could upgrade to unlimited streaming. I did so. However, although I could sometimes (but not always) access FaceTime, I still could not upload photos or download documents. This was particularly concerning since I needed to be reached due to an ill family member. Needless to say, this caused considerable stress. I enjoy working out. The fitness center was tiny and the room for classes was even tinier. On a positive note, the fitness instructor, Diana was superb. She knew her stuff, was inspirational and very nice. There was a sign up sheet for classes which was done to limit the number of passengers attending. However, the fitness staff let in whoever showed up. As a result, there was often 20 passengers in a class that was listed for 12. This made the experience challenging and at times, unsafe. The Terrace Cafe had a limited variety of food. At times, I would have loved to have a scoop of tuna or egg salad. This was never available. Although a crew member was immediately available to serve us water, coffee or juice, anything else was simply unavailable. On three occasions I asked for sparkling water and never received it. The dining room was very pleasing. The staff was great. But the food was hit or miss. Some was excellent while others, just awful. The speciality restaurants were excellent. We especially enjoyed the Red Ginger. We found the cruise offered excursions outrageously priced. We only took one excursion from the ship - a one hour glass bottom boat right for $129/person. We enjoyed it but it was very overpriced. Alcohol prices were similarly overpriced. I didn't order one drink the entire time I was onboard - simply out of principle. The most outrageous cost was the airport to port & return transfer. Since we our flight arrived at 9:40 pm and left at 8:40 am and because we were unfamiliar with the services in Papaeete, we decided to take the transfers. Each one way transfer was $129/person. The ride was under 10 minutes. Worth of all, there were delays at each end. This was utterly ridiculous. From now, we'll stay with Celebrity our preferred cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
First cruise and I was terrified due to negative reviews on here. Our review...well we are now hooked....an amazing cruise. We ate everywhere...enjoyed it all. The ships crew are constantly cleaning to keep the ship presentable. The ... Read More
First cruise and I was terrified due to negative reviews on here. Our review...well we are now hooked....an amazing cruise. We ate everywhere...enjoyed it all. The ships crew are constantly cleaning to keep the ship presentable. The entertainment is amazing. Attend as much as possible. All incredibly enjoyable especial the Maquee live shows. Entertainment crew hilarious Mathew Dom Pablo Miguel etc. We had the smaller cheaper cabins which were perfect for our budget and needs....hot showers were amazing. Many reviews complained about the interior being old....well I'm no spring chicken either any more but it's how you present yourself and this ship is no different....the decor is gorgeous. We did a few pacific Islands and pre booked our tours through the ship and had a great time being emersed in the culture and saw some amazing scenery. All our kids 3-17 attended kids clubs Turtle cove HQ and HQ+ and loved it experience. We also had EDGE packages. These were prepaid great for 7-25yrs. Our adults would probably pay per session next time as didn't get the value from pre purchasing. Thankyou from the bottom of our hearts for your passion to serve. Sad to see you retiring but hope to travel again with P&O and see some familiar faces. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
On the 28th December 2018 we embarked on a New Years cruise with P&O (the prices for this particular cruise were double if not triple normal prices due to the time of year). The dramas started when we paid for priority checkin however ... Read More
On the 28th December 2018 we embarked on a New Years cruise with P&O (the prices for this particular cruise were double if not triple normal prices due to the time of year). The dramas started when we paid for priority checkin however our tickets did not list this, it wasnt such a big issue, however at the time we didnt know this was just the start of the many issues we would experience. First day on the cruise one of our suitcases never arrived to our room, after calling reception we were told to wait and they will contact us back once they have tracked it down. 1.5 hours later sitting in our room waiting for a call back we called receiption to find our bag was there and we could come down and collect it. CABINS The first 3 days at sea were rough (with approx 6 foot waves) which is not uncommon however the front of the boat was particulary bad and majority of the time we could not be in our rooms due to the severity of the movement. Now to give you some background prior to this cruise we were on another cruise with RC which was in the middle of a cyclone with 8 foot waves and had little to no issues with our room which was also located at the front of the boat so it seems this particular boat with P&O may of not be of the same standard mechanically. Our room was on level 11 (pool 12 and pantry 14) which was a great location however levels 5,6,7 are also great as they are close to bars , reception and shops. Cabins were clean and liveable however they do not reflect the standard you would expect when paying a minimum $6k a couple (interior room) on new years. They are the original cabins and corner rooms are particulary smaller. If you are particular with pillows make sure you take your own as they are not the best. The rooms do have a safe and fridge and a great little sensor light for night time toilet trips. They also only have 1 australia power point , 1 european power point and 1 US power point. The rooms do have a hair dryer however they are very basic. Overall we were fine with our rooms however during our trip the toilet blocked up , lost all power and lights in our room at 12am in the morning and also had issues with the door locks not recognising our cards. A special mentionto the room attendents who do an amazing job , are very fast and are friendly. FOOD Not to bad, same as most cruise boats. We liked lukes , dragon lady and the cafe for cakes and tea. We love how P&O have set up the pantry as it stops alot of food being touched by other guests and limits food waste. Special mention to 400 grandi , great food , amazing staff and a nice quiet place on the ship. STAFF We were extremly lucky to experience great staff at the ocean bar , the cafe and 400 grandi. They are extremly helpful and accomodation. ENTERTAINMENT For a New Years cruise entertainment was limited however for a standard cruise it was not bad. Love riot was a great show (approx $15 per person) it was well worth it. Please note P&O seem to limit any adult only shows for 9pm and 10pm at night which wasnt always the best if you have a port day the next day. Please note lawn bowls and slides are not open permently only certain hours. PORT DAYS / TENDERS For locations with a port it was very simple and quick to get off and well organised. For ports which required tenders it became a bit of a mess and for one of our ports we waited 1.5 hours and then gave up getting off. Some people waited over 2 hours to get off and no explanation was given. After speaking to people who were lucky to get off we found guests on the beach kept snorkeling in the tender lanes which would then hold up the boats. P&O didnt seem to get these people out of the water or issues warnings to causing delays for other guests and some guests didnt even get off. SHORE TOURS We were lucky enough to do a great snorkelling tour in Santo which was well worth the money. However the couple we were travelling with did a village tour on another island and it was nothing like the tour summary and they did not learn anything from it. GUESTS Possibly some of the worst behaviour I have seen. Many of the guest were extremly rude , self centred , would push past or push in lines and we even experienced guests permently calling our room at 1am even though they were told they were calling the wrong room. Kids where still running around after 9pm and would often fill up the lifts or press all buttons inthe lifts. Our last morning there were kids outside our cabin door screaming at 5am with parents who did not care (our room was out of the way). The experience which really sent us over the edge was this one lady which we had to ask 4 times to move so we could sit down on the first day and book restaurants. We then had to ask her another 6 times to move so we could get up from our seat. I also experienced a lady at the gym who proceeded to push pass me and tell me she was waiting for a tredmill and she was next in line..... mind you i had been on the equipment for a good 5 mins before she appeared from somewhere having a cry. Please note the gym gets packed out and runs out of room and equipment duringthe mornings. Overall terrible behaviour and this doesnt even go into the fights , yelling and crappy comments we heard being shouted between guests and at the poor staff. LEAVING THE BOAT You are told to put your bags outside your room between 4pm and 8pm the night prior. Please note no where do they say you can self assist and take your own bags off but you can do this and it will get you off the boat faster. We got off the boat at 740am (we were told 720am for group 1 and 2). When we finally got off to collect our bags, our bags where not out yet and we had to wait atleast 30-40mins for our bags to come through. If you are being picked up or have a flight please keep this in mind. LIFOU If you are travelling to Lifou please note you need a ticket for jinek bay. If you do not get a ticket you will not be able to snorkel. Even though this is plastered everywhere we watched many people ignore this and walk in 30 degrees heat to the bay to then be disappointed. Quick tip, everyday you get a newsletter , make sure to read the back page for sales and spa deals. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Air fare from Los Angeles is included in the price. Everything was handled to perfection. The ship and its staff was beyond our expectations and we felt like royalty. Food was incredible, and the ports visited were magical! Staff knew our ... Read More
Air fare from Los Angeles is included in the price. Everything was handled to perfection. The ship and its staff was beyond our expectations and we felt like royalty. Food was incredible, and the ports visited were magical! Staff knew our names by the next day, and our preferences. Loved the fact you could choose from 3 dining rooms for dinner each night. 2required a reservation but there was never a problem making them. We were on board for my husbands birthday and they spoiled him all day. Room was even decorated and a special cake at dinner. Also liked the relaxed attire dress code wise. Didn't have to pack my husbands tuxedo to be used only once or twice. A surprise at the end was the fact we were put up in a day room of a beautiful resort with all transfers included, as our plane left after 11:00pm the day we disembarked. That was the icing on the cake! Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
2nd time cruiser with carnival. No complaints here. Great value for money. Staff are more than happy to accomadate passenger needs with a smile. Food was prepared, made & cooked daily, entertainment was adequate. Giving a variety of ... Read More
2nd time cruiser with carnival. No complaints here. Great value for money. Staff are more than happy to accomadate passenger needs with a smile. Food was prepared, made & cooked daily, entertainment was adequate. Giving a variety of options each night. Plenty of activities to keep anyone occupied during the day no matter the weather. Cocktails were delish. Behind the fun tour I highly recommend, to see how it all works- laundry, kitchen, staff quarters, storage areas & the bridge ( meet the captain ) & more. Cleanliness was of high quality. Staff were consistantly present throughout the ship servicing rooms & cleaning. 1st cruise was with our children, kids club catered for them sufficiently & they loved swimming in the pool & spa. 2nd cruise was myself, husband, a friend his son, nephew & friends who are married. Loads of laughs, good times & memories made. If had the opportunity we would travel with Carnival again. Well done Carnival Tanya & James Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Sailed the lovely Pacific Explorer. The choice of ship wasn't our main concern, it was the right time and going to the somewhere other than Melbourne winter. We stayed in Sydney the night before and stayed at the Rendezvous Hotel ... Read More
Sailed the lovely Pacific Explorer. The choice of ship wasn't our main concern, it was the right time and going to the somewhere other than Melbourne winter. We stayed in Sydney the night before and stayed at the Rendezvous Hotel Sydney The Rocks. The location is perfect, right near the OPT and literally a downhill walk to the terminal. Could not fault the hotel. The embarkation went smoothly, keep to the time allotted and you won't have a problem. Disembarkation was quick, so quick we ended up disembarking earlier than allocated. Once again keep to you allocated time and you won't have a problem. The ship is beautiful, well layed out. We loved everything and l don't have a bad thing to say about our cruise, (unsual to hear l know) personally we go with an objective of having a great time and thats what we had. The service was very good and as always they do a terrific job of running a huge ship with thousands of passengers. Why would you complain when everything is handed to you, no cooking, no cleaning and being waited on! So don't listen to all the bad reviews you hear. Everything will not be perfect their will always be something that you can find fault with but overall it was dam good. The ship tendor process to the islands was absolutely faultless, l have been on many that you have to wait around, but for some reason Pacific Explorer have this running smoothly. On every occassion we pretty much walked straight onto the tender. Food was great as well, so much choice and l love the way they have redesigned the pantry. We dined at the pantry for dinner as well as breakfast. It was great having a choice of foods (mexian, italian, fish n chips, curries, asian, roasts etc). We dined at Angelo's and Waterfront restuarant which were also good (free) We dined at 400 Gradi which was superb. (chargeable) but so much cheaper than if you dined at this resturant off ship. Entertainment was good Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
I choose this cruise Because of the friendliness and helpfulness of the staff .Far supérieur than of have met on all cruises l have been. Stewards are amazing at remembering everyone’s names. Due to cancelled flight, didn’t get a ... Read More
I choose this cruise Because of the friendliness and helpfulness of the staff .Far supérieur than of have met on all cruises l have been. Stewards are amazing at remembering everyone’s names. Due to cancelled flight, didn’t get a chance to explore Sydney . Embarking was easy, we opted for the take bags off ship 7am get ready in area to dis embark.. Easy was directed up lift to awaiting taxis.We had issues with the balcony door not closing properly ./fridge very noisy / and paint fumes . All of these issues were taken seriously and address promptly , ,! We opted for dinner at the Nouveau restaurant first night and were again given first class treatment . The meat melts in your mouth and is heavenly. Disappointed by the fake offer of free wine first night,, apparently per table Not per person.false advertising l believed.!. So my partner sat at another table . We still could talk and got our free wine as well which was not the best but 2 glasses in it was drinkable.. The punchline comedy club was great with great A plus comedians and R rated. Shows Also :The Marriage show was a scream .so funny and r rated l think and plenty of activities and entertainment for children to play games .Guess who l am and build a tower taking middle and blocks out .The Empire Room was used for dinning every evening and we loved the happy family vibes that the staff gave out . The matridi and singers at show time / dinner time was great entertainment .We did some ship booked excursions but it was easy to book off ship at some places. Ship at Noumena has a bus that takes and return s people to the ship . Drops off along the waters edge and a walk to shops and large information centre to view assortment of other tours . Traveling with another cabin buddy who was very pleasant and considerate ,we had a fun time all up . I plan to go back but not happy they are moving to Brisbane. Last thing was the entertainment same old shows but new actors Unsure if that is common for a yr or a certain time span. For frequent travellers it’s a bit boring but the new actors singers put their version of the show into a different light . Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I chose this cruise because the dates fit with my annual leave & also for the ports if call. The staff were very helpful & friendly however the standard of the food was a little lower than my last voyage. The activities on board ... Read More
I chose this cruise because the dates fit with my annual leave & also for the ports if call. The staff were very helpful & friendly however the standard of the food was a little lower than my last voyage. The activities on board including Trivia and carpet bowls were lively & fun however the entertainment was a little one dimensional with only 2 people doing the singing in a lot of the productions. I also felt that this cruise was treated as filling in time before the World Cruise with both pools being closed for 3 days for maintenance & a major renovation being done on the Atrium fountain during the day with a grinder being used along with very smelly sealant. I thoroughly enjoyed the Ports we visited and we eere blessed with great weather. There was the usual bickering over the laundry facilities, but that comes down to the people, not Princess. Shore excursions are expensive & unfortunately 3 of mine were cancelled, one of which I received no notification. The people maje the cruise & I met some wondrrful ones. Great trip overall Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
I picked this cruise so I would be on holiday for my birthday. This was a family trip with my partner and parents coming along. We flew into Sydney the day before the cruise and had plenty of time in the morning of the cruise to wander ... Read More
I picked this cruise so I would be on holiday for my birthday. This was a family trip with my partner and parents coming along. We flew into Sydney the day before the cruise and had plenty of time in the morning of the cruise to wander around the city and do some last minute shopping. I arrived at the Overseas Passenger Terminal at around 2pm and there were hardly any queues. There was no queue to check in and I received my Sea Pass straight away. The queues for passport checks were quick and next thing I knew, I was on the ship and ready to explore! The ship is quite large and is the biggest cruise ship I've ever been on (my previous cruise was on the Enchantment of the Seas and I thought that was huge!). It was fairly easy to find my way around after a while. If you always thought cruises were for oldies, think again. This cruise had quite a diverse crowd with young adults through to the more mature cruisers. There was a pole dancing group on this cruise! I stayed in cabin 8300, a Deluxe Oceanview Stateroom with Balcony. I highly recommend getting a balcony cabin, it was so relaxing just sitting on the balcony staring out at the ocean. It also feels incredibly stable on the balcony and I could hardly feel any motion. If you tend to get seasick, definitely get a cabin the middle of the ship. My parents had a cabin at the back of the ship and it was incredibly rocky. The staff were all amazing from our cabin steward to the waiters in the main dining room. Everyone is super polite and extremely helpful. The cruise director was very entertaining and his late night comedy show was hilarious and well worth staying up for! Despite having over 3,700 guests on board, it never felt crowded on the ship. The Royal Promenade would get busy but you can easily walk around without any issues. There was usually a queue at the coffee shop but you never had to wait too long. There were times when it was difficult to get a table at the Windjammer, no matter what time you went. I would go for lunch at around 3pm and it was still incredibly crowded! I suspect a lot of people would grab an early lunch then come back again for a second helping. Breakfast at the buffet was also crazy busy, it was much easier going to the main dining room on sea days. There were plenty of activities to do during the sea days. The weather wasn't the best during this cruise so the pool was out. The gym was ok with quite a few treadmills. The weights machines were quite old but they had free weights and benches. It got busy in the gym early in the morning but it was pretty empty in the afternoons. The running track is very short - 9 laps make up 1 mile (so about 177m per lap). Lots of people use the walking track but a LOT of people just stand in the way, taking selfies and chatting with friends. The ship is huge, can you not have a conversation somewhere else?? The theatre shows were fantastic and were very professional. They had singers, dancers, an orchestra and comedy shows. The ice skating show was great - definitely catch this show if you're on a ship with the skating rink. They did open up the rink for skating sessions but the sea was quite rough so I didn't want to attempt it. They had movies on every night above the pool but it was so windy every night that I didn't even attempt to go out on the pool deck. The only disappointment? Not being able to dock at Noumea. Unfortunately a Category 3 cyclone decided to form in the South Pacific and it was heading straight for New Caledonia. The captain made the decision to get the hell outta there so we ended up with 5 sea days over a 7 day cruise. Safety first I guess! The sea was a bit rough on the day we skipped Noumea to the point where the pools were emptied. The whirlpools were all operational though. The only place we did stop at was Lifou. The tender process took a while and I didn't get off the ship until around 2pm. They have a ticket system where you line up to get a ticket which determines what time you can leave the ship to go on a tender. They can fit 120 people on each tender and I still ended up with ticket number 26 which left in the afternoon. There didn't appear to be much to do here except swim/snorkel and spend time at the beach. A lot of people got their hair braided at the market. I just wandered around the island, visited the church at the top of the cliff and took some photos. In summary, it was a great cruise! I would definitely do it again. The only other thing I want to mention is that I picked a cruise in March because I figured there would be minimal kids as the school year had just started so figured parents wouldn't pull their kids out of school for a holiday. I was wrong. There are PLENTY of parents who happily take their kids along on a cruise when the school year has just started. There were quite a few kids running up and down stairs, playing soccer down hallways, screaming on top of their lungs at trivia events etc. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
We have done 10 cruises before this, all small expensive boutique cruises. It was time for a short break and in desperation booked on the Aria for a seven night cruise. All the negative reviews and media did not help our stress levels, ... Read More
We have done 10 cruises before this, all small expensive boutique cruises. It was time for a short break and in desperation booked on the Aria for a seven night cruise. All the negative reviews and media did not help our stress levels, but we needed a quick break. We were in for a massive surprise. Our balcony suite was really nice, all the staff friendly and helpful. Entertainment was great. We loved the food. Salt is a must. Dragon Lady and Angelos were also good. My favorite was the Pantry. I used to grab a plate and walked around picking my favorite bit from every stall. Waterfront is average to good. Only one negative, if you like your eggs perfect its going to be hit and miss. The ship is very accessible for the disabled and there were heaps of people in wheelchairs having a great time like all the others. We only had a long queue to get on the ship, but its the same as when we fly international. This is mainly due to people not following their embarkation times and showing up whenever they want to. The one other issue raised in the past is the ship not catering for smokers. This is not true anymore as deck 12 has a great spot high up for the smokers with the Dome Bar just inside to grab a cocktail. We had 100km/h winds and 6 meter swells on the way back from Vanuatu. The ship coped magnificently with only a small amount of rolling and pitching considering the weather. (I am an ex naval officer who has spend a lot of time at sea in different ships and atrocious conditions.) All in all it was the best value holiday we ever had. We will be back. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Heard there were a lot of fights and many passengers 'kicked off' but we didnt see anything. I have cruised with RCL twice now on Voyager and this time around the food, service and overall experience has greatly improved. Our ... Read More
Heard there were a lot of fights and many passengers 'kicked off' but we didnt see anything. I have cruised with RCL twice now on Voyager and this time around the food, service and overall experience has greatly improved. Our dining room waiters and cabin steward were the highlight of the crew- absolutely awesome. A lot of the shows were not my cup of tea- but hats off to the dancers and singers- awesome voices and moves. Ice skate shows amazing. A lot of activities not my thing but there's heaps to choose from to keep you busy, or just relax- which is what I prefer. Ports of call more than most cruises I have been on, so a good variety of things to do ashore except Mare. Unfortunately due to the weather (and hoard of jelly fish) it wasn't safe to do anything, but mare has definitely upgraded the dock and market, so great to see. Have booked Ovation of the seas for Jan 2019, so excited to see all the extra activities onboard. Crew very attentitive in all areas. Promenade cabin 6305 in a perfect spot too. Got a great price. Booked all tours directly with locals before boarding- all ships are too expensive! Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
My overall rating is average. Some great gimmicks to get you on board (NorthStar, iFly, FlowRider), amazing shows, awesome rooms which are let down by a poorly designed pool deck, lack of pool atmosphere and poor pool bar service. I feel ... Read More
My overall rating is average. Some great gimmicks to get you on board (NorthStar, iFly, FlowRider), amazing shows, awesome rooms which are let down by a poorly designed pool deck, lack of pool atmosphere and poor pool bar service. I feel that once they get you on the ship with all the latest attractions and experiences you are let down by poor service and pool basics they got wrong. So, lets recap why I choose this cruise.....my first cruise was on a Carnival ship sailing from Puerto Rico to my dream islands of Barbados, St Lucia, St Maarten etc. Each port day (which was 5 out of 7) I had planned all day activities while in each port. So, this time I wanted a lot more seas days and to me the choose of cruise wasn't the destination it was all about the ship experience and lots of sea days. I wanted to experience the latest and greatest mega cruise ship and Royal Caribbean is the main cruise line that has these in Australia, hence why I choose Ovation of the Seas. Ovation of the Seas is a big ship with lots of passengers. Most of the time the extra passengers aren't a problem although it can be hard to find a quiet place, speciality restaurants and activities (iFly and NorthStar) do tend to book out early, and, the Windjammer Restaurant can be challenging to find a table free. Cabin: being new, everything is the latest design and is in a condition like I was the first passenger on board! The closet and drawers are big, so easy to pack away your mountains of clothes and I had never had to get my suitcase out while on the cruise. The Virtual Balcony (a LCD TV screen (Sharp brand), on its side, fitting floor to ceiling, with drapes) with a view of the ocean behind the ship is amazing. I never felt claustrophobic or closed in while in the room. I would highly recommend an inside room with Virtual Balcony. The room attendant was super friendly, he always said hello and was keen for a friendly conversation. This service made me feel "like at home' and my room was always clean and tidy. Shows: the shows were amazing, the quality is so high. Be prepared to have your expectations met and exceeded. The shows were the highlight of the trip. I never imagined that the quality would be this high on a ship. Pixels was a good show, although, I think it is a little over rated. Pool deck: the main pool was disappointing. The side of the ship which was the front of the ship had a bar on each level and 1 row of sun lounges, the side which was the back of the ship had a big children's water park/play area and 1-2 rows of sun lounges (the children's water park wasn't well utilised since it wasn't school holidays) and each side of the pool had 3 rows of sun lounges. So, really not many sun lounges around the pool. The video screen was to one side of the ship (not like most ships where the screen is on a side of the pool that is the front or back of the ship). This meant that watching movies was not practical (only 1 side of the pool could see it) and the sound was not loud enough. There was only 2hrs of live music each afternoon and the entertainment from the cruise entertainment team. Very disappointed. Inside pool: there is an enclosed pool with a glass roof, the roof and sides could open fully but even during our trip was fine every day with temps into the 30C it was never opened. Being indoors it was noisy. Verandahs around the pool: there is a big wide enclosed verandah on each side of the pools which is wonderful if you want somewhere shady with sun lounges and other funky lounge furniture to sit/lay on. Great concept but being enclosed makes it feel disconnected because you don't feel the lovely warm sea breezes. In one of these enclosed verandah areas, which was a main thorough fare along the side of the ship, was the smoking area. The smoking area was enclosed on one side with windows and covered with a roof, so the smoke drifted along the enclosed verandah or out into the pool area. I really can't believe on a new ship they choose this as the smoking area! Solarium: a lovely over 16yo area. The cascade pools down the front of the ship were lovely to sit in, with a drink in hand. It did tent to get noisy and at times the air felt stuffy, once again all glass roof which was closed with air con. Pool bar service: slow, staff which never smiled or entertaining, they often served the next person rather than the person who had been waiting the longest, rarely (ie. if ever) offered a waiter service in the pool deck area. Very very disappointed. There were no frozen cocktails on the last day as they had run out. My idea of a good cruise day is around the pool, with entertainment, having a few drinks.....this ship did not meet my prior experiences or my expectations. Other outdoor areas were great. Deck 15 (running track level) was awesome for finding a sun lounge. Knowing that nearly 5,000 people fit on the ship I thought finding a sun lounge would be a problem, this was never the case, there was always many to choose from. Entertainment venues: there was no nightclub per say. There was a Music Hall which was the only venue that stayed open after midnight and was called a nightclub.....for me it didn't really work. Schooner Bar was a good atmosphere with piano player. The Original English Pub was one of the best venues, with a stand up guitar/singer every night, probably the best venue of a night entertainment wise but it was very small...such a pity. Food: the main dining restaurants, 4 in total, each have different decor and are on one floor. If you like the grandeur of a big restaurant with tiers that look over the other etc....you will not get this on Ovation of the Seas. All restaurants are on one level and due to not being two levels they lack that grand feeling. The Grande was the only spectacular one, the other ones ranged from being OK to American Icon Grill which was basic and of a night looked drab. There always seems to be someone different serving you during each sitting, this resulted in a feeling where service didn't feel personal. The food was good but I wouldn't say spectacular. The prawn cocktail was minimal and a big fail. There was always people walking around your table, it did not feel quiet or intimate. Windjammer Restaurant: (think Lido on Carnival) was always full of people, hard to find a table, some food wasn't of the highest quality (honey dew melon was too hard, sweet and sour chicken had no taste). This was one area where the space was insufficient for the number of people on board. The speciality restaurants were awesome, we tried Chops Grille (think steakhouse) and Wonderland (imaginative cuisine over 13 courses) were first class and definitely worth the money. Definitely try Wonderland, it blew me away! There are restaurant packages available only on Day 1 of the tour. We choose 4 for USD 100. For the other restaurants we choose experiences: 1) bottomless (champagne) lunch with galley tour which was a great experience with lobster and a nice piece of steak for lunch and lots of champagne, and, 2) sushi making class and you take away 3-4 long sushi rolls. Formal night: I had read reviews that formal night wasn't really formal in Australia and that was my experience. For guys, I saw maybe 2 (at most) tuxedos, a few suits and ties, odd sports jacket, most in chinos/slacks, long sleeve shirt. Ladies tended to be more formal than guys. The staff dress was appalling, they wore the same clothing as any other night. In the restaurant, male restaurant staff did not have their top button done up or a neck tie. I feel if Royal Caribbean are calling it a formal night, they should set the tone for the evening, which they sadly did not. Very disappointing RC. Drinks: I really like cocktails and I think they are a classic cruise experience....colour creative decorative conceptions served in beautiful glassware and martini style glasses.....Ovation of the Seas really lack in this area. Only memorable cocktail I had was an Expresso Martini and that is because I asked for it and it wasn't on the menu! Drinks seemed to be fast to prepared, basic, and boring. Other aspects of the cruise: Fitness centre: great but no sauna or steam room (you had to buy a pass to the spa centre which was costly). iFly (sky diving) great experience, tube was narrow so not like other commercial ones I've been in previously off ships, fully booked and not sufficient booking slots for all guests. NorthStar (glass viewing capsule that rises above the ship) great concept but when you get up there while at sea you realise there is just blue ocean as far as you can see so the only thing to look at is back down at the ship. Great concept, good gimmick in the advertising, but underwhelming once you experience. Flowrider: I didn't try it due to cost, ie $$$, but it was also busy with areas to watch those participating. Shore Excursions in Noumea: we did not book on board as the cost looked grossly inflated. Noumea is expensive but we did find a combo ticket inside the cruise terminal for the Green Train and all day hop-on hop-off bus tour for $50 (USD I think, not AUD). I think the train trip on board the cruise was $88+. We can not recommend the Green Train highly enough, great tour guide, excellent route, we got the bus back to Lemon Beach for an afternoon of food and swimming. If you have gotten this far into my review.....if you have kids, this is a great ship for you. If you like a good pool deck with good pool entertainment, outdoor movies, try another ship. If you like exotic cocktails, try another ship. If you are a multi-generational family and want things for all ages, this ship is for you. Be prepared to have all the latest attractions/activities/ride but be prepared for variable service. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
The crew, security and cleaning staff were all stellar. Melbourne folks are an absolute blast to party with. Carnival Liberty sells more alcohol than any other ship in the fleet largely due to the good folks from Melbourne's love for ... Read More
The crew, security and cleaning staff were all stellar. Melbourne folks are an absolute blast to party with. Carnival Liberty sells more alcohol than any other ship in the fleet largely due to the good folks from Melbourne's love for celebrating life to the fullest! If your looking for a glass-half-full trip then this is the one. It's also largely suitable for families, we could see no evidence of any impropriety.. just great great times. Truffles restaurant was great and they would break the dinner up with their dancing cabaret through the enthused diners. We didn't really try the buffet up on the Lido deck except for cooked breakfasts. The staff were so very courteous and helpful. They made the whole experience very personable one which I really love. The best advice I can give is don't try to participate in all the activities all the time - you will exhaust yourself. Just pace yourself and give yourself a little buffer to go and enjoy the view of Bass Straight from the observation deck. Read Less
Sail Date February 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
Why can't their be an area that is not focused on alcohol. What ever happened to family dance night where there is no bar or alcohol involved. As a family we love all activities. We paid for the gold tickets for the adventure park ... Read More
Why can't their be an area that is not focused on alcohol. What ever happened to family dance night where there is no bar or alcohol involved. As a family we love all activities. We paid for the gold tickets for the adventure park and our children couldn't use their tickets because the adventure park office didn't open until the third day of cruising. We have one adult daughter, three teenaged youth and one under 12 child. We don't drink neither do our children. We participated in all the dress up parties but they were overcrowded. If you had children you had to sit it out because they couldn't come join in the fun it's not appropriate to have alcohol around them. Every floor had a bar and the cruise parties were alcohol focused and we didn't want our son or youth around that. We took our son up to the children's den and there was nothing up their for him to do. Overall, the food, staff and accommodation was good but it would have been perfect if there were options for non-alcohol drinking adults and there adult children. We wanted to listen to the comedy but that was in the bar. We wanted to watch a family movie but there was bingo in the auditorium. Disappointed with not enough options for families. We went swimming after breakfast and guess what everyone is drinking alcohol. Went to spend time in the spa pool, well they were drinking their too. My son wants to cruise again soon, but the alcohol focus is a turn off for me. Our bathroom had built in dirt in the hand basin. Two adults in our group complained about hitting their head on the upper bunk bed. No towels for the swimming area. Including myself. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
In general the cruise itself is fine. We all enjoyed it. Only on one ocasion during lunch at the Horizon that I found lipstick on my coffee cup. The staff immediately replace one for me.While I was having the cooked cabbage, I chewed a ... Read More
In general the cruise itself is fine. We all enjoyed it. Only on one ocasion during lunch at the Horizon that I found lipstick on my coffee cup. The staff immediately replace one for me.While I was having the cooked cabbage, I chewed a piece of plastic about 2x2 inches. I reported to the staff and he sent his supervisor to me to apologize. The next day somebody called me from the office and apologize again. However there wasn't any compensation at all. I think this is a major problem especially when we had the norovirus. We had an inside cabin. It was small but functional with lots of storage space. However the bed is not high enough to store our suitcases underneath. Service was hit and miss. Most of the dinning staff are good. We seldom see our cabin attendant though. In my opinion food was good but lack of variety especially the Horizon court. We did not join any ship's excursion, we DIY. Noumea was disappointing, expensive and not much to see. Embarkation and disembarkation was quite efficient. We have been to 10plus cruises and Princess is a step under Celebrity and HAL. Unless Princess have a good deal we will stay with Celebrity Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We had previously sailed on L'Austral in Alaska and were so impressed that when we learnt that Ponant were to cruise the Kimberley we decided to join them again. FRom the moment we embarked, we were made very welcome by the captain ... Read More
We had previously sailed on L'Austral in Alaska and were so impressed that when we learnt that Ponant were to cruise the Kimberley we decided to join them again. FRom the moment we embarked, we were made very welcome by the captain and crew. As the cruise progressed it became clear that the expedition crew (naturalists and specialists on indigenous rock art etc) were really top class and excellent communicators. The cabin was comfortable and room service was excellent and unobtrusive. As second time travellers the addition of free laundry service was a remarkable additional comfort. The information sessions and entertainment were well managed and relevant. As a personal reflection, the fact that many of the crew were French nationals, made the cruise that more enjoyable to one who loves to try out his French language skills (or lack of) and it was good that their was a response that made us feel good for trying. The food was excellent and the choice of a la carte or buffet style was refreshing. The only slight problem was that the wine selection was a little lacking although we understand that this was due to circumstances beyond Ponant's control. once again, as we had been in Alaska, we came away refreshed and renewed and happy enough to book a cruise on the same ship to Antartica. 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
We choose this cruise because we have heard of its good reputation. I am very happy that I had my first experience of cruising. The onboard experience is marketed relaxing and enjoyable as I have no dull moment. Watching sunrise in ... Read More
We choose this cruise because we have heard of its good reputation. I am very happy that I had my first experience of cruising. The onboard experience is marketed relaxing and enjoyable as I have no dull moment. Watching sunrise in the morning, gym, spa, sauna & steam, so much food with many varieties to choose from and a 24 hours pizza! I must say WOW to our 3 waiters in the evening Vitaliy, Komang and Yen. Thanks to them to make the meal time so enjoyable and they took care of our need. We only request once and they remembered to supply us in every meal. We must say Thatvwevfeel like VIPs. Love to dance with the waiters during the evening meal time. Great entertainments and activities. Love to watch the children participated in the towel animals folding on stage. My impression and experience tell me that the management takes great care of customers service. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
Feedback and reviews convinced us to give it a go. As first timers we were not sure if there would be enough to do all day,as we like to keep active and not just soak up the sun on a deckchair. Well we were definitely not ... Read More
Feedback and reviews convinced us to give it a go. As first timers we were not sure if there would be enough to do all day,as we like to keep active and not just soak up the sun on a deckchair. Well we were definitely not disappointed,between gym sessions,dance classes,swimming,table tennis,ice skating(yes we tried that too!),to watching fabulous theatre and skating performances,or an outdoor movie with a cocktail in hand! It was all there. And so much more...seminars,the library, the Casino,Bingo and Trivia,even a shopping promenade,for a mid afternoon wander or a coffee and snack. Food was good,plenty of choice both in the MDR and the Windjammer and the staff very friendly and helpful. Our cabin was super comfortable and very quiet(9th deck). Housekeeper very thorough. On shore days we chose not to do tours,rather to explore ourselves and enjoy the beautiful beaches. All up it was a great cruise,great service and so much fun. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This was our first cruise and we chose Carnival because of the price and that it covered our birthdays. Our trip started well with the shuttle from the airport it was easy to use,( they found us) quick and our luggage was well taken care ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we chose Carnival because of the price and that it covered our birthdays. Our trip started well with the shuttle from the airport it was easy to use,( they found us) quick and our luggage was well taken care of at the port. Our cabin was a pleasant surprise comfortable and very clean. Later we found it to be well appointed. We sailed out of Sydney and the views from the ship were outstanding. We used most of the dining options, and enjoyed all of them. The Empire being our favourite not just because of the great food, but because of Dessi and her marvelous team who not only feed us each night but entertained us. Our waiter Godfrey sand and danced for us each night. We enjoyed the Red Frog Pub and again our waiter Eka gave us personal attention. The stops at the islands were wonderful, some with not a lot of touristy things which was nice. Our cabin stewards Turi and Andi keep our cabin in very good order and went out of their way to help us celebrate our birthdays with messages in colour pens on the mirrors. We found that all the staff we came in contact with remembered our names and made us feel like we were special. Lastly the young people who put on all the shows, Wow what talent. The comedy club, very entertaining. We travelled from Adelaide to join the ship, We are a couple late 60's and early 70's. We disembarked with ease, no rush, shuttle to the airport in time for our flight. Would we do it again...........in a heart beat. Thank you Carnival. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
Overall, the ship was amazing. The dining was a WOW!! Although the entertainment was average, with only 4 or 5 musicals, the ship still kept our family of 4 busy throughout the whole day. The sporting and fitness facilities on the ship ... Read More
Overall, the ship was amazing. The dining was a WOW!! Although the entertainment was average, with only 4 or 5 musicals, the ship still kept our family of 4 busy throughout the whole day. The sporting and fitness facilities on the ship were outstanding, the ship provided us with a number of sports, such as table tennis(ping pong), basketball, soccer, cricket, paddle tennis, mini golf a jogging track and a well equipped high-tech gym. Every night, when the room steward refreshed our room he left us with delicious chocolates and the next day's edition of the Princess Patter( the newsletter with showed all the activities happening in the next day). One very important thing I would recommend you to purchase, especially if you are travelling with kids, is to buy the soda and drink package. And also purchase once you get on the ship, not before, because the price onboard is cheaper than purchasing it from the website. With 60 Australian dollars we could get all the drinks we wanted for free. And one thing that you should know is that Princess is not very strict with the package. For example, I could but a drink and then give the card to my sister and she could get a drink for herself. Our interior cabin was very nice. The service on the ship was amazing. The dining was also great. The pizza in this ship was amazing. For breakfast there was a huge variety of food, from pancakes, to waffles, to omelettes, to hash browns, to scrambled eggs, to croissants, to yoghurt, to chocolate croissants, to fruit etc. The dinner was amazing too, and the dessert was absolutely wonderful. The cruise was actually very great for children too, the kids clubs were awesome, and the youth counsellors very very friendly. The service on this ship was also very great. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016

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