This was a long long trip.. Round trip from the Southeastern U.S. 16,000+ miles...However, the 17 hrs to Papeete, actually where fairly easy. We were 1st class to LAX, and then Air Tahiti, which was a new Airbus, coach was fine (if you ... Read More
This was a long long trip.. Round trip from the Southeastern U.S. 16,000+ miles...However, the 17 hrs to Papeete, actually where fairly easy. We were 1st class to LAX, and then Air Tahiti, which was a new Airbus, coach was fine (if you have not been on a big Airbus,there are no individual air outlets, everyone gets central airflows, There where some very very cold spots on the plane. One lady was wrapped in a blanket and later got out a windbreaker and she was still cold).
After such a long day you would think Princess would try to make the boarding a breeze, they didn't, 2 1/2 hrs from deplaning to our room...NOT A FUN TIME.
Long Time Travelers, be advised this is ONE Small ship. Yes, you get to know a lot of people over 12 nights, But the lack of variety of things to do at night and sea days soon takes it toll on you. The show room is like a side showbar in Vegas. NO Stage, everyone is on the same level and VERY CLOSE...seats are just A "Captain Type chair" side by side.
One problem was that the ship sailed so early every day like 4:00 & 4:30 why? most of these Southern Tahitian islands are only a few miles apart, most of the other ships stayed all night. Seems they could have sailed every night at midnight and still be at the next port by 9:00 or so.
We had very squally and windy weather all the days down south,we were 12 hours late leaving Raiatea, and 6 hours late arriving Bora Bora.
Five days from Bora bora to Hilo were nice and the weather got better the farther North we got. Crossing the Equator was a big deal, the crew threw a party and also threw the captain in the pool (pager and all).
Christmas Island (GREAT). Be sure and get the 1st Tender. there are only 2 shore tours 1 is bird watching (boring), but the other is a snorkel trip $20.00 person(that's not a typo), but she can only take 10-12 people and only does one trip..first come first serve. If you miss these two trips, there is nothing to do but sweat. We did the Snorkel and the captain took us out to swim with Dolphins and there were 100s -- he pulls you along the side of the out rigger boat and the dolphins come to you....YOU WILL NEVER NEVER SEE ANYTHING LIKE THIS ANY WHERE_
We rented a car at Hilo (with a GPS) went to the Volcano, and 2 waterfalls..+ a stop at Wal-Mart and Hilo Hatties..
Maui we snorkeled at the Molokini crater excellent.If Princess makes your air plans and you have a late afternoon flight out of Honolulu, they have a day-room set up at a hotel on Waikiki beach where they bus you and guard your luggage until time to go to the airport
Our balcony room was great. The room steward was excellent...The dining room food was typical Cruise ship stuff....Good, but want knock your socks off....Because the ship is SO small, everything is close, we were on deck 7 two flights up too the pool & buffet..and two flights down to the dining room , casino, shops...so we walked a lot.
All and all it's was a good trip, we liked the Hawaiian islands a lot more than the tahiti part.....
ps.. I forgot on Raiatea, you must do the pearl farm snorkel trip educational and lots of fish.....
aloha Read Less