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Old 03-26-2008, 04:49 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 4
Hi all,
First time post but have spent many many hours reading and absorbing some fantastic information on here!

I am taking my family on our first cruise{ 2 adults and 4 kids 3,4,6,9} on an 18 day cruise from NZ on July 31. Flying from Brisbane to NZ for the cruise that departs at Brisbane.
The cruise goes,
Dravuni Island, Fiji
Suva, Fiji
Vava'u, Tonga
Nuku'alofa, Tonga
Auckland, New Zealand
Mystery Island, Vanuatu
Isle of Pines, New Caledonia
Noumea, New Caledonia
Brisbane, Australia

1. With 4 kids we had to book two Triple cabins on outside F deck, is this a good deck?
2. It worked out at $1316 each{$3948 a cabin}, is this really good value?
3. Does anyone have some great value things to do on the above ports or some"dont miss" type things.
4. Flying from Brisbane the day before we sail and staying in the Best Western President hotel{ bet no president has ever stayed there },Flights,hotel,cruise,taxes and levies etc etc it is all up $8914 AUS for our family of 6 for the trip, is this a good deal? It is hard to know the first time.

This is my way of getting the kids as keen as i am on the 3 year world yacht cruise we are doing in three years{55 foot yacht as i have been sailing for 30 years and i am 37} and going to places we will spend weeks at each port.

Any tips would be very welcome.

Thank you all
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 03-26-2008, 06:30 AM
penny3333's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Alabama
Posts: 10,602
Hi Mickalex, welcome to Cruise-Chat. What a fantastic itinerary. You're wondering if it is a good deal. The way I've figured it, including airfare, you're spending $82.54/pp per day for transportation, food, and lodging. Sounds like a good deal to me. With 4 kids, I'd be doing a lot of snorkeling and beach activities. Since I've never had the pleasure of doing your itinerary, I'd be checking out snorkeling/diving sites. I'd also think they'd like to see some of the islands. They may be wondering what happened to the video arcade, the swimming pools, and the kids clubs when they're on board your 55' sail. There will be so much for them to do on board as well as on shore, you won't be able to fit everything in. Maybe research the various ports for things that interest you. While you're there, take a quick tour, then return on your 3 year voyage. Best wishes for a wonderful time, and once again, welcome aboard!
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 03-26-2008, 02:51 PM
f-mattox's Avatar  
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Costa Mesa, California
Posts: 4,740
Hello Mick, and welcome to cruise-chat;

I couldn't find an "F deck" on the Pacific Sun deckplans, so I assume you meant "catagory F" on Main Deck. They look fine to me; some are a little far forward, but if you are spending three years on a 55 footer, I assume motion sickness is not an issue.

I agree with Penny; I think you got a terrific bargain. I've only been to Auckland, and then only from the airport to a ship, so I can offer no suggestions on your ports. But it sounds like a wonderful cruise for you and the family.

Keep in touch and let us know how it goes.

  #4 (permalink)  
Old 03-26-2008, 03:35 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Canberra Australia
Posts: 14
Hi Mick,

You will have a wonderful time and I will be a bit surprised if the kids want to leave the kids club at all! I have been to many of these ports and have a couple of suggestions other than the obvious swimming snorkling, be very aware of the strength of the sun...sunstroke would not be nice and some of these stops are at beautiful but very exposed beaches. In Noumea you must take the "little train" which does a tour around the sights...really a little trolley on wheels but your littlies will love it. Tonga is beautiful and undeveloped..if you get a chance to visit the beach which is a volcanic lagoon with a wonderful cave nearby I would do that, canoe rides should be available there. If they do a beach BBQ I would be in that too. Suva (did I say not worth leaving the ship)! Auckland visit the Antartic Centre and maybe a ferry ride over to Davenport and dont forget Sky Tower for the best views of the city. Have a great trip!
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 03-26-2008, 05:52 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 4
You are all fantastic!
I never thought of it on a $ per day way,it sure makes it sound great.
I am writing all these tips down in diary so i can be armed with information. Thank you, it will make the trip that much better having tips from cruisers that have been there done that etc!

Yes f class on main deck,sorry i am a new to the cruise ships, but have been searching and looking at as many pictures as i can.

I want to make it extra special for the kids so they get a feel for what they can do as we travel in the future.

Rugbypopsie love the name, i am ex Randwick player etc and ex player of 22 years. Your advice will go to very good use


P.s thank you for the welcome Penny, i have read many of your post and you have great advice, as do the others
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 04-01-2008, 03:00 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Canberra Australia
Posts: 14
You are very welcome Mickalex...us Brumbies fans get around. I forgot to say also that there is a free bus around Auckland which will get you to most of the major sights, just hop on and off. You wont have time this trip but if back in NZ take the kids to see the glow worm caves at Waitomo....it is out of this world!

This trip will be very special for the kids I can guarantee it, in fact let us have a review when you are back I bet the kids will want every holiday to be a cruise holiday. Another tip with kids is to write to the tourist office of each of the countries you are visiting usually their embassy here in Canberra can assist. They will send info and posters etc...so the kids can start anticipating the countries they will visit perhaps even start an album that they can add souvenirs and photos too of their trip.

Best travel tip is to pick up tour company brochures or intineraries from the net and then do the same sights but by yourself generally much cheaper.
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 04-05-2008, 05:07 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 4
Thanks mate, excellent advice!
I am putting everything i learn onto the laptop to have it on had while on the cruise.
go the Brumbies!
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dravuni, island, mystery, pacific, sun

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