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krispylovesdonut

Tahitian Princess

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Hi, a bit of advice! We have been on the TP twice, March '03 and March '04, and going with the same CCers March 10, 2006. (yaaaaaaaaaaay! I love FP!!!)

 

I would definitely book shore excursions online, or on the pier. They are cheaper, and sometimes better. The heat is quite intense, so 1/2 to 2/3 day tours are enough to wear you out. That means no problem getting back to the ship in plenty of time. All of the tour guides we had spoke enough English to be easy to understand, also. Store owners, don't always!

Marc of www.huahine-nautique.com is the best!!! Some snorkeling, but the picnic in the water is so special! I see he now offers a partial land tour, with the picnic, for $20 more. I'm thinking it may be the way to go for us, as we haven't seen Huahine!

All of the tours we took, we paid at the pier. No problem if there was a reason to not get there.

Be sure you bring very strong sunblock, of about 45 to 50 spf. I assure you, even a tan person may burn! Also, a lip balm with 15 or more spf. I couldn't find mine the first cruise, and burned my lips! It hurts!!

Anything else, please ask! Or if you'd like a few pics emailed, just email me with a request, saying CC in the subject.

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Well, I can see that there are benefits to booking through Princess as well as booking on your own. I have been collecting information regarding tours that others have done and have either recommended or suggested that we skip (for a variety of reasons). As I mentioned, my other half has never cruised and when he's on vacation, he mainly enjoys resting so the hustle and bustle of going on many excursions doesn't look like a possibility this time. But I am weighing the pros and cons of all the advice I have recieved and will pick the best rated ones and book those (some are through Princess, and some are not). I will be sure to let others know of our experiences after we return........oh so long from now. *sigh* S'ok, I am having fun doing all the planning now. Reading and chatting with others about their experiences has been wonderful for me - I love this! Thank you everyone! :)

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Daboo - you are welcome - everyone is here to pay it forward and learn and get tips and info. Glad to be of help.

 

One more thing - that Aqua Safari (sponsored by Princess of course) was an excellent tour - you go from the pier area of Bora Bora and board a small boat, then head to an area where they have another boat with the tanks and helmets. They allow everyone to snorkel while they wait to take their turn on the helmet dive. You stand on a ladder that leads to the water from the boat. A hoist lowers the helmet onto your head. You walk down the steps and walk on the sea floor to see what there is to see. You can make movements like walking on the moon and jump, etc. They give each person and dive/goodie bag with (what else?) a French baguette and the fish just swarm. It was pretty cool to see the faces of very old and young alike enjoying this cruise and dive. People who would never be able to dive, were able to do it. You see, your face, hair, and chest stay dry. So you could wear glasses or contacts, have a huge bouffant hairdo, wear tons of makeup nad not mess up a thing - you stay fry from the chest down! A diver accompanies the group on the ocean floor and monitors everything and shows you where to walk to, etc

 

An EXCELLENT tour!

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Well, I can see that there are benefits to booking through Princess as well as booking on your own. I have been collecting information regarding tours that others have done and have either recommended or suggested that we skip (for a variety of reasons). As I mentioned, my other half has never cruised and when he's on vacation, he mainly enjoys resting so the hustle and bustle of going on many excursions doesn't look like a possibility this time. But I am weighing the pros and cons of all the advice I have recieved and will pick the best rated ones and book those (some are through Princess, and some are not). I will be sure to let others know of our experiences after we return........oh so long from now. *sigh* S'ok, I am having fun doing all the planning now. Reading and chatting with others about their experiences has been wonderful for me - I love this! Thank you everyone! :)

You're welcome! And yes, there are benefits to booking tours either way. Good luck on whatever you decide!

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Tanya,

 

My husband and I leave Wednesday for our first trip on the Tahitian Princess! There are also about 26 others we have talked with here on CC that are going as well. This is my 7th cruise and my husbands 6th. Our first was on Norweign and on a ship that was, at the time, considered small. We sailed from San Juan to Barbados right off the bat. That part of the trip was where you felt the rocking. You are a lot less likely to feel it on the larger ships. I have been on RCL (three times), Celebrity (once) and Carnival (once) and some times you have to look out a window to see if you are actually moving, because you can't feel it. My favorite line is RCL, but I have been dying to try Princess! Celebrity was okay, but seemed a little too "prim & proper" for a vacation in my opinion. You might want to consider what age range you might like to have on the ship. It's becoming a little more broad now, but in my experience, ships that sail from San Juan tend to have a younger crowd. I guess the older crowd may not like the travel time to San Juan, especially when they can leave from Florida. One of the cruises we took out of Florida seemed to have an older crowd.

 

If you need to know anything in particular I will be happy to answer questions for you when we get back (Sept. 5th). I will try to pop back over here, but if I forget, please look for my posts or search for the "Tahitian Princess 8/25/04" thread, as I am sure we will all be back over there going on about our trip!

 

There have been some great reviews by other CCers -- including links to their photos! If you would like them, I will be happy to share them with you when I get back as well. Of course, I might have pics of everything, as one of our CCers has graciously offered to download ALL of our digital photos and burn all of us a CD before we leave the ship! Can you imagine photos from 12 couples (a few of which have good underwater cameras and are doing lots of diving!).

 

Talk to you guys later!

I gotta finish packing!

 

Susan

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Wow Susan - you're leaving in 2 days! Lucky you. :) Please do come back and post again to let us all know how is was for you. I love to read the reviews and see the pictures as well - everyone sees things a little differently and I like to get a broad idea of what's out there to see and do.

Have a wonderful trip and I can't wait to see what you have to say upon your return.

Bon Voyage!

Tanya

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just returned on Thurs and all I can say is this is a great cruise. I have cruised many times before and this is the first time I would say I will do this one again.

The ship was great, the food and service were excellent. The fact that it is a small ship allows you to meet alot of people.

As for tours, the only ship scheduled tour we took was on Papeete the day after we arrived. Marc's tour on Huahine should not be missed. You can schedule it on the internet(Huahine Nautique.com). We went with Stephan of Mata tours on Raitea. The tours scheduled off the ship are usually 25-30 dollars cheaper and often less crowded.

Have a great time.

David

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All the people have given good advice. We have gone twice(actually met laurie-her last day my first day). We did both Itineraries. The cook islands were better for us because the marquesas trip was the first time and there wasnt much to do. Nobody answered you question about the water......Its great. French polynesia is not about waves and surf. Its about lagoons. You get to experience very warm claim water.Its more like a swimming pool. Its absolutely beautiful. If you can you should try a pre or post cruise stay. We were lucky and had a little rain both times. The rain is warm and wont stop you from going in the water

 

Jeff

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Hi, Jeff-

 

We were thinking of going last time you went. Didn't work out, though. Are you planning on going again anytime soon? I know there is still room on our sailing :)

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We are going to stop in tahiti on the way back from our 12/23---1/6 austrailia to new zealand cruise. We have scheduled 3 nights in french polynesia and still need to book a room. We are still trying to find some deals at the sheraton moorea or the tahaa resort. We will miss the T.P. as it has been our favorite cruise. We will go back again(rumor says the tahitian princess may be replaced by the bigger dawn princess) My best guess is march 2006

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We're cruising from Jan. 2-12th, and will then stay at the Beachcomber on Tahiti before heading home on the 13th. We are staying 3 nights precruise at the Pension Motu Iti on Moorea, it is next to the Sheraton. I bet you will have a wonderful cruise. I haven't heard about the Dawn taking over the TP route.

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Although I loved the TP, it would be nice to see a large ship go thru there - they cant go too large - going thru those motus and lagoons has got to be tough stuff....I would be interested to see if they stick the Dawn in there

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We were on TP in Feb. for our 30th anniversary. I wrote a complete review but with this new board, it's been deleted. This is a trip of a lifetime, so don't miss out on it. We met and enjoyed a great group of people from CC and in fact are going on a cruise in January with one of the couples we met.

 

Everything about the ship and cruise is excellent. Make sure you take Marc's tour and Bruno's tour. I've got photos at the link below.

 

http://www.webshots.com/search?new=1&source=mdocsheader&words=Nitrodog

 

Hope this helps you out. It was clearly the most wonderful vacation we've ever had.

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I loved seeing your pictures and your Bloody Marys inside shots came out much better than mine...I was on a small boat that day and took a portable watercamera that was a disposable rather than my underwater digital or regular digital - my shots were all dark inside, including the mens room and the ladies room! Those pictures of the motu picnic are great! I love Huahine! Looks like you do too! We also met a wonderful group of people and one couple we just met in Kona Hawaii for two weeks - again, such fun! You enjoy your next trip with your Tahitian Princess friends! We sure did!

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We just booked the TP for the May 3 Hawaii/Tahiti cruise. I'm booking the air through Princess and I understand there is a charge for changing from their flight schedule. I'd like to get to Hawaii at least one day ahead to tour Oahu and I was thinking of staying in Papeete overnight on our return.

 

From what I'm reading, it may not be worth staying in Papeete that day. Any suggestions?

Marly

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We flew Hawaiian first class SAT to SAT service on Hawaiian to PPT - it was worth it - go to Oahu early and see what you need to and then go to Tahiti early and see what there is to see - do a circle island tour. Stay at the Sheraton, its nice. Go for the European meal plan and save some dinero on food - which can be expensive. Do the tour that goes to Gaugain Museum and all around the isthmus, its very interesting and beautiful. If you arent up for the bus ride and tour then go to Moorea while staying on Tahiti, they have ferries. Just grab a ferry and run over for the day. Aramiti runs them - they arent expensive, but dont run 24/7 - so there is some planning. Or you can take the Le Truck and go all the way around, it would be cheap but would take forever, if time is on your side, no problem - it does get pretty rural and if you dont speak Tahitian or French it may not be the tour for you. I wouldnt feel uncomfortable anywhere on the island. Everyone is very helpful and nice and things are relatively "modern". Its not like being stuck in Mexico or anything.

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OK, I just got back from the TP cruise in August.

My advice, dont book tours with Princess if you dont have to.

There ARE A TON of great tours on the islands for so much cheaper.

In addition, 99% of Tahitians speak some english anyways. the best tours were those given by the locals and not understanding them was NEVER a problem.

I Highly suggest Marc's in Huahine

Stephanes in Raietea or bora bora and

Stephanies in Moorea.

and the Princess vanilla plantation and Pearl farm tour in Raietea wasnt that bad, expensive, but not bad.

 

You can book most of these on the day of even if you want , right on the pier. Except Marc's because he is SOOO popular, have to reserve in advance via his website.

http://www.huahine-nautique.com/picnicR.htm

 

AND I did not bring my fins, just mask and snorkel and never never had a problem, I even did Drift snorkeling. I did not need my fins. I was so glad i didnt pack them, and most people had the hassle carrying them around. Most of the islands, you have to tender in on the little boats to the pier, just a pain to carry a whole bunch of stuff on the crowded tenders.

 

Tahitians are by far the most pleasant, helpful, nice people you will ever meet. So nice to the tourists. Notice how all the cars stop when you arein the cross walk. They are very very nice people. Tahiti is now my favorite vacation location and i may never go back to the caribbean again. There is no comparison.

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So many people that we cruised with agree. We still have contact with several people that cruised with us and everyone says the same thing. One couple even went again (aboard the Tahitian Princess) about 7 months after returning. Once you go - you will have a hard time being able to compare it to anything! Go - and enjoy!

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