9 Sydney (Australia) to South Pacific Princess Sun Princess Cruise Reviews

I travelled with another seasoned cruise couple (over 80 cruises) and had a balcony room to myself on Deck 11. First thing I noticed was that - being out of Australia - it was decked out as from America - ok....they are from America ... Read More
I travelled with another seasoned cruise couple (over 80 cruises) and had a balcony room to myself on Deck 11. First thing I noticed was that - being out of Australia - it was decked out as from America - ok....they are from America but have been sailing out of Australia for years now. The majority of patrons were Australian so why were the shops etc - not Australian based, selling Australian good and snacks?? I had an issue with the food - in the BUFFET the choice was fine although I could not eat any of the preprepared hot food as it mostly came in plastic bags and simply heated and reheated. Who knows what was in any of it. The sweets looked great, were creative enough, although, again, I could not eat it after tasting some initially as, for example, the APPLE CRUMBLE was 10% apple, 90% crumble if you were lucky (shame). no icecream either. The premade coffee was disgusting ... and I am not too fussy .... but I saw them remove this premade coffee from under the dispenser and saw it premixed coming out of a plastic bag. I have never seen that before not did I ever think I would. I had no issue with the dining areas although you only had one choice of dining as such that was included in your fare. The paying extra restaurants were relatively empty for the 14 days. That tells you enough. Another thing was the entertainment. It was ok. The shows were nothing to write home about and the guest artists were good but again, not great. They only went for 1/2 hour - never experienced that before. You no longer sat down and you had to get up and leave again :-)) There were no movies in the movie theatre - instead they were all on top deck out in the weather. When they were on, the sound was so loud you could not hear anyone talking to you. Such a beautiful theatre too. I have been on another cruise where this theatre was used for movies (as it should) and the ambience and mood was fantastic. I left an item on deck one evening and on realising, went back early the next morning and it was not there. I reported it missing and was told it will be handed in within the next 24 hours or so. It wasn't so I requested security to look at the video of the area that night. Reception staff told me that it was not important enough an item (of no value to them) to have security go through the footage. Luckily, it was handed in days later and very suspiciously so. No matter ... I have it back. The excursions were good and well organised. shuttles to town centres were great, embarkation was fast, disembarkation was also fast. So ... would I go with them again - probably but I would know what to expect. Value for money????? To be fair - probably. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We chose this as the port of embarkation and timing met our needs otherwise would go Oceania. THE GOOD: The entertainment was great for our age group. Lots of soul, R & B, and rock 60’s and 70’s. Shows, though, are not ... Read More
We chose this as the port of embarkation and timing met our needs otherwise would go Oceania. THE GOOD: The entertainment was great for our age group. Lots of soul, R & B, and rock 60’s and 70’s. Shows, though, are not Broadway – like, elaborate productions as found on many other cruise lines, but were still quite good and entertaining. Ozzie’s really know how to party and the crew dancers work extra hard joining in. On this cruise the house band horns joined in on deck with the regular dance band and were present at other parties. Never saw this before on other cruises. Great fun. Exercise room adequate: machines, dumbbells, two weight benches. Dining service and stateroom service were fine. Fruit and vegetables were fresh and readily available, as was coffee, tea and ice water. Vegetarian offerings were good. Though I do eat meat, I stuck with mostly the vegetarian dishes as they were quite good. Enforced washing of hands with soap and water breakfast and lunch. Six taps available so never a line. Free tokens(for some) self-serve laundromat and ironing. Other wise about $9 a wash and dry. Boarding was quick and painless. Bags arrived promptly. The bed and pillows were the best that we had ever slept with in 40 years of cruising. Air conditioning in cabin and throughout the ship worked well and was comfortable. Much needed in the heat and humidity of Fiji. Tendering was efficient. Long lines coming back except later in the day. Stifling hot, no air in the tender the first time. Getting on and off the boat was efficient. THE BAD: Meals were edible. Lamb chops and stews were good. Otherwise nothing gourmet, many were not prepared correctly: Cesar Salad was not REAL Cesar Salad, Cioppino was not REAL Cioppino. Roast beef was edible but no flavour. Fish was O.K. as were some deserts. Bacon, sausages etc were cold, chewy unappetizing. Eggs were O.K. Fruit, cereals were available. Dinner buffet was uninspiring, no international offerings, a total disaster. Only a few decent French wines available, some at a decent price. For some reason the soups and sauces were a gelatinous, glutinous mess, thick and goupy. Of course the way to make them would be by a reduction. The cheese plate consisted of what appeared and tasted as a commercial “Kraft” variety. No Creme Caramel most nights (disastrous omission as that is my favorite!) No outdoor barbecue, no outdoor poolside band / dancing. Huge television in mid ship section where outdoor pool was. Extremely noisy movies etc so much so that we had to find the only quiet place mid aft mid deck. BRING NOISE CANCELING HEAD PHONES!!! Forward there is a quiet space but they charge $20 / half day. Islands were interesting but do not take the ship’s overpriced offerings. Go on the Island and check out what there is. Be adventurous! Drink package at over $80 a day outrageous as are wine and beer prices. Beware of prices on land also. $7 for 250 ml beer! Again outrageous rip off. Just be prepared to pay the price if you drink. No flutes of champagne were handed out on New Year’s Eve as on every other line we have been on! The ship “nickel and dime” you to death. Next they will probably charge you for poolside towels. THE UGLY: First sight of ship…...”I’m going on this rust bucket?”. Rust dripping from port holes, anchor chain, water line, balconies, balcony table. Hey USE SOME PAINT, WHITE PAINT!! Problem: Worn, threadbare carpets in trafficked areas. Simple Solution: Replace them!! Paid extra for a balcony. Cramped sardine can opening. Rusting throughout including tiny table. Crippling chairs, no room to swing a cat (about all that you would want to do there.) Eat al fresco? Lose your appetite quickly. Romantic dinner? No romance here, just brown stains. We were with Princess before so we knew what to expect but this is the only cruise that fit our port and time frame. Also Loyalty Islands were something new for us. For others with greater expectations, STAY FAR AWAY! This is not what luxury priced cruising should be, and it is luxury priced. No bargain here! No pretensions but still a lot of fun, not stuffy but required two “formal nights”. Many did dress in tuxedos but many did not. Australians and New Zealanders are exempt from tipping, everyone else has to tip (added automatically to your credit card). COMPLAIN and get this credited back, otherwise you are stuck with a $250 charge. This is a discriminatory and unfair practice. Either everyone tips or no one tips as a requirement. Maybe a class action suit will wake them up! Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
This was our 5th cruise with Princess and our 22 cruise overall. We have found Princess to be good in the past. Not top of the industry but certainly not bad. This cruise was not up to what we have experienced in the past. I think ... Read More
This was our 5th cruise with Princess and our 22 cruise overall. We have found Princess to be good in the past. Not top of the industry but certainly not bad. This cruise was not up to what we have experienced in the past. I think because this ship spends it's time in the very warm South Pacific it has caused the ship to have developed a mouldy smell in many of the common areas. The main theater being one of the worst spots on the ship. Also there is quite a bit of paint rusting in spots, exterior carpet on the deck lifting up and some of the wooden hand rails having started to rot.The ship is not falling apart but these things did stand out and are usually not seen on other cruise lines of this caliber. we have cruised on. The biggest issue we had on this cruise was the Noro Virus that developed at about day 9 of the 14 day cruise. One of the problems could have been that on Princess the passengers were allowed to help themselves at the buffet. Once the virus was discovered this practice stopped but that created the next problem, there are not enough crew to serve the food to the passengers in the buffet. This caused quite a backup for food. and would not even let. Another issue for me was the fact that Princess was charging you 1.1% surcharge for using your credit card to pay for your onboard purchases. Never have had this charge before on a Princess ship or any other cruise line. When I asked the Princess representative I booked my cruise through she was stunned. She said she had never heard of this practice before. Also they charged for an ice cream cone on this ship, $5.00. Other Princess ships have Sushi bars attached to their wine bars and they give you Sushi and Tapas free with a glass of wine purchase. Not this shipp. They have put in a specialty Sushi restaurant and are charging for food. Holland America has Sushi in the buffet with no charge as does Celebrity Cruises. The quality of the food in the buffet was very poor with the omlet station being the only positive place to get breakfast. A nice surprise was the food in the main dining room at dinner. Very good most nights I am usually very positive and usually find the best in the trips I take but there were too many little things wrong with this ship and they all just added up to this review being not negative but also not positive.It was the first time we have run in to a Noro Virus on a cruise and I think it has to do with the area of the world the ship is constantly in, also allowing passengers to help themselves to food in the buffet could be an issue. They do have 3 hand wash stations on each side of the buffet as you enter amd they do have a gate keeper making sure that you do use them. Even with that I saw people ignore the staffs instructions and not wash their hands. Overall I would not cruise on this ship again and will think long and hard about cruising with Princess again. They are not the only ship in the water and maybe it is time people started to send them that message. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We chose this cruise because it was something different with a significant historical significance. Overall it was a good cruise. The history lectures were excellent. The tenders to Doini Island took hours and was most frustrating. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was something different with a significant historical significance. Overall it was a good cruise. The history lectures were excellent. The tenders to Doini Island took hours and was most frustrating. However getting to Kiriwina Island was very easy on the tenders with no waiting. Dining was excellent. Gluten free diet was well catered for. Entertainment overall was excellent - a big improvement on the island cruise we took a few months ago. Passenger services were good. However we had an ocean view cabin on Plaza deck and whilst the cabin was good there was a constant pump noise spasmodically going through the night waking one up constantly. After six days we were moved to a balcony cabin (B735). We were just grateful to have a quiet cabin. Having been on the Emerald Princess there was a big difference in the comfort of the beds - we did not notice that they were supposed to be new beds. They were wonderful beds on the Emerald Princess.. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
The non screening of NRL games was a dissapointment as we were on the Sea Princess last year & seen every game but they showed most AFL games which was wierd as majority of people came from NSW & QLD. Legends bar was closed all day ... Read More
The non screening of NRL games was a dissapointment as we were on the Sea Princess last year & seen every game but they showed most AFL games which was wierd as majority of people came from NSW & QLD. Legends bar was closed all day which i could not understand. It was like winning the lottery getting a seat at the coffee lounge due to readers & knitters sitting there all day. Food was good but as usual the same menu as my last 4 cruises why don't they change the menu to Aussie as this ship travels from Australia all the time & only one Lobster meal in 3 weeks when it used to be every formal night. Every where you go on the ship there is something missing from the last trip always cutting back with everything except for the cost of the cruise. The string group Rhapsody Tris was awesome & so was Bravo. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This cruise was like a floating nursing home and geared for the elderly. There was a lack of entertainment. We had to replace our cruise card numerous times so we could get into our cabin. There were problems with the lifts and the ... Read More
This cruise was like a floating nursing home and geared for the elderly. There was a lack of entertainment. We had to replace our cruise card numerous times so we could get into our cabin. There were problems with the lifts and the sewerage system. We had an oceanview room which was adequate and the beds were comfortable however the bathroom was very small. There was a surcharge per half day to use the Sanctuary - we passed this area several times during our trip and saw very few people in this area - should be open to all adult guests and free of charge. The staff were fantastic - always friendly, polite and would go out of their way to help you. The international cafe and dining room were great. The buffet was poorly organised. We were disappointed on not stopping at Lifou and the $100 compensation was no substitute. The tenders going to & from the islands were well organised and efficient. We would never go on another cruise with Princess nor recommend them to our friends. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
We've just returned from this cruise, our first with Princess. We're cruising with them again (Sapphire Princess) in December 2015. We've cruised with 3 other lines and Princess was not quite up to the level of two of them. ... Read More
We've just returned from this cruise, our first with Princess. We're cruising with them again (Sapphire Princess) in December 2015. We've cruised with 3 other lines and Princess was not quite up to the level of two of them. The cabin was lovely and beautifully maintained by our Steward. The meals were very good. The prices for eg., hair care and massages exorbitant compared to other cruise lines. The excursions were poorly organised especially when tenders involved: waiting in the dining rooms to be called up - waited up to 1-3/4 hrs and then not a lot of organisation once on land. Returns on the tender still poorly organised with further waits. It was disappointing that they only used 3 of the 4 tender boats on most occasions as the extra boat would have helped this situation. We had not experienced this with the other cruise lines and many Princess cruisers said this was not normal for Princess and would be voicing their disappointment. We didn't pay to sit around waiting. This waiting did not help the locals who were waiting for passengers to land and spend money. Most of the staff were friendly. Many senior crew were aloof. All in all we had a good cruise but would not go on Sun Princess again. There's an awful lot of rust on the ship which I found off putting but my husband described it as superficial. Any Maintenance issues with our cabin were dealt with quickly. Live, on the big screen movies and in cabin entertainment quite good. With no AFL telecast it was very disappointing for many of the 1,800 odd Australian passengers. We went to cooking class and food preparation demonstrations and the crew were fun and informative. Embarkation was also disorganised. People lining up to get cases and fighting for space with those trying to get out of the terminal through immigration and customs. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
I have sailed twice with Princess cruises and found the Sun was a little shabby in appearance, particularly the Princess theatre. The seats were in disrepair & so were the carpets throughout the ship., The entertainment was boring, ... Read More
I have sailed twice with Princess cruises and found the Sun was a little shabby in appearance, particularly the Princess theatre. The seats were in disrepair & so were the carpets throughout the ship., The entertainment was boring, especially the dancers routine which was the same show as the Sea princess a few months earlier. One of my pass-times onboard is the Trivia & I felt that the hostess /s quite often rushed through the questions & answers and were not very clear. This attitude was repeated with the pool-side games also. I felt like they didnt really want to be there. Housekeeping staff were fantastic along with the Waiters in the dining rooms & Buffet (Horizon Court). I do have a gripe with the shore excursions - way over-priced and not what is described in the leaflet / information. I ventured ashore to spend time on a beach for 45 minutes after the initial tour of Noumea & the City (which was included in the tour) but the coach & Guide said they were overbooked (they blamed Princess) so left us on this beach for 2 & a half hours while they returned for the 2nd lot. There were only a few shops plus no shade on the beach. Over half of the people who went on that tour were frail elderly & the only place to sit down was at a coffee-shop. Not enough room for all of us. My television in the cabin was faulty & I could not watch any tv channels, and I particularly like to catch up on some news. After six days & four visits from different Technicians, the "modem" at back of TV was replaced. There is plenty of variety of food to eat & I love that there are attendants not only at the doors of the dining rooms but also at the Horizon Buffet, ensuring that everyone who enters has used the Hand Sanitizers. Princess needs to up their game in the entertainment area, particularly on sea days. I found myself bored while waiting for a show etc.. too much time in between. However, I am still contemplating another cruise but this time, on the Diamond Princess.   Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
We were so excited to finally go to Australia, Fiji and New Zealand . What a disaster. The ship says wheelchair friendly we found this not to be true. Yes there is 1 outside cabin balcony, the rest are all inside cabins. Are you not ... Read More
We were so excited to finally go to Australia, Fiji and New Zealand . What a disaster. The ship says wheelchair friendly we found this not to be true. Yes there is 1 outside cabin balcony, the rest are all inside cabins. Are you not depressed enough without a room with no windows. We had rented a scooter from Special Needs At Sea ( they were great) thinking this would give my husband some freedom. Unfortunately the entrances to the majority of decks is raised on one side 2,5-3.5 cm, he was hung up on every doorway except the sliding doors from the Horizon court. The only deck he had freedom on was the 14th. I had a hard time trying to get him over the others by pushing. The Sanctuary was built around the old "Children's pool" and his only access was on the kitchen food elevator. His only access to the Adult pools was non existent. They did offer to lift him in a cradle to the main pool in front of about 500 people. That did not happen due to the embarrassment. The food on this ship was very sub-princess. My husband told the Head Chef that I prepared better meals than him. The buffet was mostly what I would feed to a field crew, except for the salad and cheese. We were in the process of disembarking when the young Princess Crew Member was pushing frontward instead of backward and hit a join ejecting my husband out and on to the floor of the platform. He twisted hurt his back, both knees, left shoulder and ribs. The chair fell on him and caused a cut on his right arm. The report that went into head office was the first aide team attended and dressed the right arm. Not one thing about the actual accident which Kim, a princess employee was responsible to do. It is a good thing we had other witnesses. To top all this it says wheelchair access may be limited on tenders. It was nit existent. So DH was ship bound for the first 2 weeks. Bah! To say we are extremely disappointed with the responsibility of Princess and their staff is unbelievable. Will we cruise with Princess - yes but only because we have over 300 days at sea and hope the Island Princess delivers more at Christmas Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
Sun Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 3.0 N/A
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness & Recreation 3.0 N/A
Family 4.0 3.6
Shore Excursions 4.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 3.0 N/A
Service 5.0 4.3
Value for Money 4.0 N/A

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