Dream Trip to New Zealand!

Sun Princess Cruise Review to South Pacific - Australia
Experience: 1 cruise (first)
Review: 1
Helpful Vote: 1

Overall Rating:

4.6 out of 5
Sun Princess

13 Night New Zealand (Sydney Roundtrip)

Sail Date: December 09, 2017

Ship: Sun Princess

Cabin Type: Balcony

Cabin Number: B303

Traveled As: Couple

Reviewed: 8 months ago

Review Summary

This was a dream come true trip. Seeing a beautiful place like New Zealand was worth every cent we saved! We renewed our vows on the ship and the staff made it very special. We are definitely cruising again!

Embarkation

5 out of 5
This was far more organized than I expected. From the moment we arrived to the port, our bags were tagged and whisked away, then once inside our health questionnaire was handed to us and were directed to the check in desk. Surprisingly short wait for our group to be called for security and customs - at every turn, there was someone to point us in the right direction.

Ship Experiences

Food and Dining

4 out of 5
The service and food in the dining room (we did anytime dining) was superb. Excellent service by the staff and all the food came out in a short time. The buffet was fine; sometimes the dishes were hit and miss. The biggest problem I had with the buffet is that a number of the dishes were under-seasoned and perhaps having a section with types of seasoning would have been good. I also think there could have been more options for those with dietary needs. For example, soy and/or almond milk for those who can't drink cow's milk. However, overall all the food was very good (especially at the international cafe for late night munchies!).

Onboard Activities

4 out of 5
We didn't do a lot of the activities, but we did enjoy the stretching class and the art auction. The pool was smaller than I thought it would be and the adults only Sanctuary was too pricey.

Entertainment

5 out of 5
The entertainment staff always had something fun going on for all ages. We especially enjoyed trivia and karaoke, plus the shows were always fun and included great performers! The one thing I wish could be changed is not allowing passengers to take seats more than 30 minutes ahead of time. Way too many people would get in very early and if you tried to get a seat 20 minutes before the show, you were out of luck.

Children's Programs

no kids with us

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
Amazing service, all around. Our steward was fantastic with taking care of our room, wait staff always friendly and would grab anything special you requested. I was surprised that we could order drinks from poolside!

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
The Sun Princess is not a huge ship and I think it was perfect for we first time cruisers. It was easy to get around and we learned to avoid the elevators at certain times. Every area was always well maintained and clean!

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
I was not expecting a huge room, but there was more space than I anticipated! More shelving space in the closet made unpacking easy and lots of hangers available. The bed was VERY comfortable. I was pleasantly surprised how private the balcony was!

Ship Tip

Don't bother with a drink package, even the "Unlimited Soda and More." It does not apply all across the ship. We probably could have saved a lot of money without it. I would also look into booking excursions offered from offshore - we found these were operated by the same agents Princess was working with and were cheaper!

Ports Of Call

Sydney, Australia

5 out of 5
We got to explore Sydney after the cruise and did not do an excursion through Princess. I highly recommend doing the Hop on/Hop off bus and seeing the Taronga Zoo!

Port Chalmers (Dunedin), New Zealand

4 out of 5
Cadbury factory and the Speights Brewery! That was perfect for us - chocolate and beer! The only downside is that the transportation around town isn't great for tourists. Expect a lot of walking.

Akaroa, New Zealand

4 out of 5

Wellington, New Zealand

5 out of 5

Napier, New Zealand

3 out of 5
We were expecting some great vineyards during our excursion, but they weren't that good. Plus we were rushed to three different ones and it was hard to enjoy them.

Tauranga, New Zealand

4 out of 5

Auckland, New Zealand

5 out of 5
We explored on our own, which was easy to do in Auckland. We visited the museum and the aquarium, and using the hop on/hop off bus was very handy.

Bay Of Islands, New Zealand

5 out of 5
The Harbor Nature Cruise was excellent! Got to see dolphins swimming super close to our boat and seals with their pups on the rocks.

Disembarkation

5 out of 5
Very easy. We left our bags outside the cabin the night before and were given a group number we would disembark with the next morning. This was a very organized way to get passengers off the ship and we could collect our luggage after going through customs. Plenty of shuttles and taxis available outside too.

Traveler Photos

Opera House Beautiful Fjordland National Park Very cultural area and great for shopping! One of the vineyards we visited.
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