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Muckyduckway

Norwegian Jewel - info re Sydney/NZ cruises?

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11 hours ago, karoo said:

Also in reply to the OP- NZ is very well set up to book shore excursions in all the ports. The locals are very friendly and they have people in the ports when you get off to help answer questions and give directions, tips on what to do etc. We didn’t have any problems with shuttles at the ports. You just lined up and when the bus was full you were driven out of the port to the drop off point. Embarkation was slow at Auckland due to many passengers not applying for their Aus visas online before they arrived at the ship. They had to do it online in the terminal and yes you can’t take food, especially fruits, vegetables, plants etc. off the ship. They have a good agricultural industry they want to protect. Aus is the same. NZ though has very good food so this presented no problems. I can’t remember the situation with water. I think I would have taken water off. 

Did you do a trip report or review of your New Zealand cruise?  I've been trying to find first hand accounts but have found very few - your responses and comments on other posts lead me to think I would enjoy your perspective.

 

 

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16 hours ago, casofilia said:

I have been trying to find anything but can't so far.

People have to fill in an Arrival Form at the first port and on that they ask if you are carrying Biosecurity Risk Goods.  At all other ports you just walk off with no form.

I assume that in all "secondary" ports there will now be detector dogs and you won't be able to claim "I forgot" about the apple, meat pie or whatever. 

This piece outlines the change, but it looks like they haven't yet introduced the fines for passengers off the ship for the day...

https://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/news-and-resources/media-releases/cruise-ship-fines-start/

 

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I have received the News Release from the MPI; here it is:-

 

Cruise ship fines start

Date: 04 Dec 2018
Media contact: MPI media team
Telephone: 029 894 0328

Biosecurity officers now have the ability to fine cruise ship passengers who bring ashore foods or other items that could carry dangerous pests or diseases.

The new fines came into place last week, allowing officers to issue infringement notices of $400 to cruise ship passengers who unintentionally break New Zealand's biosecurity rules.

Biosecurity New Zealand already has the power to prosecute passengers who intentionally smuggle risk goods ashore.

"So far we haven't had to issue any fines, which suggests the cruise lines are doing a good job of informing passengers about their biosecurity responsibilities," says Steve Gilbert, border clearance services director, Biosecurity New Zealand.

He says fines can currently only be issued to travellers who are permanently leaving a vessel. Biosecurity New Zealand is working to extend the infringement notices to passengers who temporarily come ashore.

"This is about empowering our officers to send a clear message about how important biosecurity is to New Zealand," says Mr Gilbert.

"Some people think cruise ship biosecurity is all about detector dogs. But ultimately our officers are our most important asset. We don't always need to bring in detector dog teams to help with clearances, but we couldn't protect New Zealand without our skilled and dedicated officers."

Cruise ship clearances

Biosecurity New Zealand uses a wide range of tools to help quarantine officers manage biosecurity risk from cruise ships. Many of them are used on a case-by-case basis depending on risk. The tools include:

  • The use of intelligence (for example, the previous compliance history of vessels) to target biosecurity checks.
  • Mobile x-ray technology to assist with inspection of bags carried by passengers coming ashore.
  • Random verification checks of disembarking cruise ship passengers.
  • An accreditation scheme that involves vetting fresh produce and other food items aboard the vessel to ensure they meet strict biosecurity rules.
  • Dog teams to sniff out fresh produce.
  • Infringement notices for departing passengers.

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9 hours ago, Muckyduckway said:

Did you do a trip report or review of your New Zealand cruise?  I've been trying to find first hand accounts but have found very few - your responses and comments on other posts lead me to think I would enjoy your perspective.

 

 

 

No I didn't. I did 5 cruises earlier this year and I never seem to find the time to do a trip report. What ports are you visiting? If you list them I can tell you what I did in each port. 

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A link to my review of the Jewel after our 16 day trip to NZ in Jan 2018.

https://www.cruisecritic.com.au/memberreviews/memberreview.cfm?EntryID=607711

 

Ports

The original itinerary was changed prior to our booking so our first port was Melbourne. We needed a MIKI card ($6)to get into Melbourne. We were dropped off near the Art Gallery where there were some artisan markets and only a short walk into the city centre. After church I walked to Captain Cooks Cottage which was a very long walk. I also went to Melbourne Central a shopping precinct and bought ridiculously expensive Kit Kat chocolate before walking back to the bus pick up. 

NZ Ports

Dunedin -My mum & I went on a private tour with Good Company Tours to Larnach Castle with a 2hr city tour (pick up 9.30). Our tour guide met us in the departure hall. There was an option to do a tour of the Cadbury factory but it involved lots of stairs so we just bought chocolate from their store. I enjoyed our day as I hadn't been to Larnach Castle since 1976. We were dropped off at the port at 4.30. There is free wifi at the port.

Akaroa -we tendered(20mins). My mum & I did a wildlife tour with Akaroa Dolphins. The office is at the end of the Jetty. After our tour my mum went back to the ship and I walked around the town. I wish I had made the effort to walk up the hill to The Giant's House ($20pp) but my knee wasn't up to it.(I was only 8wks post a total knee replacement). A young man in his early 20's thought  it was worthwhile visiting. There is a public toilet near the end of the pier.

Picton -the buses dropped us off at the information centre. I visited the Edwin Fox Museum $15pp(200m flat walk from the info centre). The Edwin Fox is the 9th oldest ship in existence. I then walked into town where it was lightly raining so ducked into a shop and walked out with a dress and a pair of shoes before heading back to the ship. 

Wellington -I went to church then walked to the cable car via the waterfront. I walked through the Botanic Gardens (all down hill) then through the Bolton St cemetary, past the Beehive and back to the bus pick up. At the port an Immigration Officer boarded the bus to check our ID & NCL cards.

Napier -I booked a tour to see the Gannets with Gannet Safaris Overland. We had to meet them opposite the information centre in town at 8.30. We caught the free shuttle into town which stopped at the information centre and also the Aquarium.  We arrived back into town at 12.45. Mum returned to the ship and I wandered along the foreshore from the sculpture of Pania to the Millenium Sculpture then wandered around town checking out the Art Deco buildings. There were 8 vintage cars with ladies & gentlemen in period costume at the dock with their cars and a four piece band playing music. 

Tauranga -I booked a tour to Te Puia with Rotorua Discovery Tours. The tour guide was waiting just outside the port gates. We drove along the beach in Tauranga then stopped at a Kiwi farm where we could taste both green and gold Kiwi fruit. We had lunch when we arrived at Te Puia (my hamburger was delicious) whilst we waited for the cultural show to start at 1.15. After the show we went to check out Pohutu Geyser and the mud pools. We were unable to see the Kiwi's in the Kiwi bird house as they were sleeping. We were given a choice between going to see the Redwood forrest or Government House. We stopped at a honey bee shop and I bought another icecream.

Bay of Islands -it was too rough to tender. 

Auckland -a miserable wet day. I lived there for 5 yrs so was catching up with a school friend.

 

Apart from Wellington there was nothing special at any of the ports other than showing our NCL swip cards as proof we were eligible to be there.

 

 

 

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On 12/4/2018 at 9:41 AM, GUT2407 said:

200 years ago you just about NEEDED one to come here.

 

Haha yes, you can blame the US for that, The US was the first, Australia was only needed after the start of the start of the American Revolution. 

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On 12/5/2018 at 6:22 AM, karoo said:

 

No I didn't. I did 5 cruises earlier this year and I never seem to find the time to do a trip report. What ports are you visiting? If you list them I can tell you what I did in each port. 

Our ports are Dunedin, Akaroa, Picton, Wellington, Napier, Tauranga, Auckland.  We have pretty much decided (or have a shortlist) of what we plan to do in each port, but its always good to read the actual experiences of those who've been there, got the tshirt.

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9 hours ago, Gizmosmum said:

A link to my review of the Jewel after our 16 day trip to NZ in Jan 2018.

https://www.cruisecritic.com.au/memberreviews/memberreview.cfm?EntryID=607711

 

 

Thank you for the link (marked for reading this evening) and for the detailed description above.  Good to know about the toilet - it's funny how toilets are universally needed but people rarely mention things like that in trip reports.  My partner will be thrilled - a favourite mantra is "never pass up the opportunity to avail of the facilities" :)

Edited by Muckyduckway

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9 hours ago, Gizmosmum said:

 

Akaroa -we tendered(20mins). My mum & I did a wildlife tour with Akaroa Dolphins. The office is at the end of the Jetty. After our tour my mum went back to the ship and I walked around the town. I wish I had made the effort to walk up the hill to The Giant's House ($20pp) but my knee wasn't up to it.(I was only 8wks post a total knee replacement). A young man in his early 20's thought  it was worthwhile visiting. There is a public toilet near the end of the pier.

 

We have booked the same tour in Akaroa - what did you think about the boat in terms of access for your knee and for your Mum?  How was the process for the tender tickets - I saw on another trip report that distribution started at 6:30 in the morning.  Our wildlife tour is booked for 10:15 which means a 9:45 checkin, with our arrival in Akaroa scheduled for 8:00.  I'm anticipating that there shouldn't be a problem if we get on the tender by 9:15?

 

Quote

Picton -the buses dropped us off at the information centre. I visited the Edwin Fox Museum $15pp(200m flat walk from the info centre). The Edwin Fox is the 9th oldest ship in existence. I then walked into town where it was lightly raining so ducked into a shop and walked out with a dress and a pair of shoes before heading back to the ship. 

 

We're viewing Picton as a rest-day, so weather depending, we will probably take a walk by the beach or visit the Edwin Fox Museum (do you think it was a worthwhile visit?)

 

Quote

Wellington -I went to church then walked to the cable car via the waterfront. I walked through the Botanic Gardens (all down hill) then through the Bolton St cemetary, past the Beehive and back to the bus pick up. At the port an Immigration Officer boarded the bus to check our ID & NCL cards.

 

How did you find walking downhill through the Botanic Gardens?  This is on our plan, but years of mountain hiking has left us avoiding steep downhills more than uphills as the strain on the knees can be brutal.

 

Quote

Napier -I booked a tour to see the Gannets with Gannet Safaris Overland. We had to meet them opposite the information centre in town at 8.30. We caught the free shuttle into town which stopped at the information centre and also the Aquarium.  We arrived back into town at 12.45. Mum returned to the ship and I wandered along the foreshore from the sculpture of Pania to the Millenium Sculpture then wandered around town checking out the Art Deco buildings. There were 8 vintage cars with ladies & gentlemen in period costume at the dock with their cars and a four piece band playing music.

 

Good to know about the free shuttle - intend to do a self-guided Art Deco tour here.

 

Quote

Apart from Wellington there was nothing special at any of the ports other than showing our NCL swip cards as proof we were eligible to be there.

 

Do I have the following shuttle info correct?

Dunedin - paid shuttle

Akaroa - tender (no shuttle)

Picton - free shuttle

Wellington - free shuttle

Napier - free shuttle

Tauranga ?

Auckland - no shuttle needed, walk from port

 

Thanks for all the info.  It sounds like you both had a very good cruise.

 

Edited by Muckyduckway

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7 hours ago, Muckyduckway said:

 

We have booked the same tour in Akaroa - what did you think about the boat in terms of access for your knee and for your Mum?  How was the process for the tender tickets - I saw on another trip report that distribution started at 6:30 in the morning.  Our wildlife tour is booked for 10:15 which means a 9:45 checkin, with our arrival in Akaroa scheduled for 8:00.  I'm anticipating that there shouldn't be a problem if we get on the tender by 9:15?

Tender tickets were available near the pool from 6.30. I picked ours up after breakfast around 7.30. My mum is a slow walker so we should have caught the previous tender. The boat isn't large and my mum stayed at the back. I managed to walk to the front of the boat by holding on but there isn't a lot of room to manoeuvre.  My mum gets sea sickness but still enjoyed the trip.

 

We're viewing Picton as a rest-day, so weather depending, we will probably take a walk by the beach or visit the Edwin Fox Museum (do you think it was a worthwhile visit?)

I really enjoyed the museum. There is a film about the renovation process of the Edwin Fox. I actually like the way it is presented in its very rustic state.

 

How did you find walking downhill through the Botanic Gardens?  This is on our plan, but years of mountain hiking has left us avoiding steep downhills more than uphills as the strain on the knees can be brutal.

According to my notes the first part was tough on the knees. I remember it was very steep. I had originally intended to walk up hill but am glad I did it the other way around. The Rose gardens are near the bottom. You can walk on the flat or walk uphill (10mins total) to view the Rose gardens from above.

 

Good to know about the free shuttle - intend to do a self-guided Art Deco tour here.

The tour to the Gannets was worth it NZ$230 for 2.

 

Do I have the following shuttle info correct?

Dunedin - paid shuttle -not sure about the shuttle here as we were transferred by bus tour into Dunedin(14kms)

Akaroa - tender (no shuttle)

Picton - free shuttle

Wellington - free shuttle

Napier - free shuttle

Tauranga ? I believe there isn't a shuttle 

Auckland - no shuttle needed, walk from port

 

Thanks for all the info.  It sounds like you both had a very good cruise.

The cruise was amazing. I had an absolute ball and can't wait to check her refit out next week for our Tassie cruise. The entertainment staff were great. Bar tender Vladan in Spinnaker was great.

 

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15 hours ago, Gizmosmum said:

 

Thank you, useful to know. 

Have a wonderful cruise - hope you enjoy it as much or more than last time.

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I thought when we went Wellington charged for the shuttle, but only like a dollar or two. I seem to recall one bloke getting shirty because they wouldn’t take US$.

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Do we need to bring a lot of AUD and NZD, or are these countries largely cashless (i.e., everything by credit card)?

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3 hours ago, esseff35 said:

Do we need to bring a lot of AUD and NZD, or are these countries largely cashless (i.e., everything by credit card)?

Largely cashless.

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5 hours ago, esseff35 said:

Do we need to bring a lot of AUD and NZD, or are these countries largely cashless (i.e., everything by credit card)?

Card will work nearly everywhere othountries maybe grab a little walking around cash for small purchases

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Hello,  

 

I am not going to lie I did not read all of the  posts above.  However I did the Sydney 13 night cruise over Christmas last year and I am headed back for the 16 night on the 20th. 

 

It it is a lovely cruise the excursions this year are not as exciting to me as the ones I wanted to do or repeat on this trip from those offered last year.  Also we will be skipping bay of islands this year which is a shame.  

 

You our can bring water off the ship in NZ. But don’t bring food they will remind you constantly and they will tell you they are not responsible for any fines that you get bringing food off.  There were dogs at the gangway more than once checking to see if we brought off food.  

 

I will go back and read more of this thread later to answer any more questions.  This is a cruise that shouldn’t be missed. 

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14 hours ago, GUT2407 said:

I thought when we went Wellington charged for the shuttle, but only like a dollar or two. I seem to recall one bloke getting shirty because they wouldn’t take US$.

Seems to be a problem for Americans used to Caribbean cruises where almost everywhere takes dollars, but no excuse to get shirty.

 

We're carrying sterling, euros, US$, A$, NZ$ - it's an epic journey and we like to be prepared :)

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2 hours ago, Nelsj099 said:

Hello,  

 

I am not going to lie I did not read all of the  posts above.  However I did the Sydney 13 night cruise over Christmas last year and I am headed back for the 16 night on the 20th. 

 

It it is a lovely cruise the excursions this year are not as exciting to me as the ones I wanted to do or repeat on this trip from those offered last year.  Also we will be skipping bay of islands this year which is a shame.  

 

You our can bring water off the ship in NZ. But don’t bring food they will remind you constantly and they will tell you they are not responsible for any fines that you get bringing food off.  There were dogs at the gangway more than once checking to see if we brought off food.  

 

I will go back and read more of this thread later to answer any more questions.  This is a cruise that shouldn’t be missed. 

 

Thank you for all the lovely pics - a real appetizer for the cruise ahead.

 

You must have really loved it to do it again the following year - although I understand that as we did two Christmases in a row on a Hurtigruten ship in Norway! Will you be doing a review this year?

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2 hours ago, Muckyduckway said:

 

Thank you for all the lovely pics - a real appetizer for the cruise ahead.

 

You must have really loved it to do it again the following year - although I understand that as we did two Christmases in a row on a Hurtigruten ship in Norway! Will you be doing a review this year?

I would do one if people were interested in it.  I have a video that I put together from last year.  It was an amazing trip.  I did Norway this summer on the Jade, I think I could spend all of my time there ... I don't know how you gave up that tradition! 

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1 hour ago, Nelsj099 said:

I would do one if people were interested in it.  I have a video that I put together from last year.

 

Is your video on youtube?

 

1 hour ago, Nelsj099 said:

 It was an amazing trip.  I did Norway this summer on the Jade, I think I could spend all of my time there ... I don't know how you gave up that tradition! 

 

Simple really - too many places to see :classic_biggrin: and not enough money (or leave) :classic_sad:

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Hey so the video is not on youtube but it is on google you can see it here https://drive.google.com/file/d/1bD9knfVvvxrSf8-cjNFHVOHT2tjz900G/view?usp=sharing.  I would upload it to youtube but I live in China, and that could take hours and hours because of VPN. 

 

Someone else was commenting about money I would have cash in NZD.  There were some shuttles that you needed cash for.  They do say to carry your passport the real one for getting back into some of the ports.  Just take it. 

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On 12/9/2018 at 4:04 AM, Nelsj099 said:

Hey so the video is not on youtube but it is on google you can see it here https://drive.google.com/file/d/1bD9knfVvvxrSf8-cjNFHVOHT2tjz900G/view?usp=sharing.  I would upload it to youtube but I live in China, and that could take hours and hours because of VPN. 

 

Thanks for the link, it really comes across that you had a wonderful time.  Those balloons really didn't want to get involved!! :)

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Haha I had rewatched it before I posted it on here.  I was thinking I was clearly not a fan of waking up in the morning. I had a fantastic time I can not wait until Friday when my plane leaves for OZ!!!   (It's Wednesday noon here) I am on the struggle bus right  now for sure.

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A while ago I was asked for some ideas on shorex in NZ.

 

In case it is any help here is what I wrote:-

 

I helped NCL “re-write” their shorex while I was on the Jewel from Honolulu to Sydney as I knew the Shore Excursion Manager.  I also made suggestions for others.  Recently I have written some stuff for someone who is doing a bus tour of NZ before doing a “Round Australia” cruise later this year.

Here are my thoughts.


Auckland:-  

1)    A long day to go to Hobbiton (Matamata) and Waitomo Caves.

2)    A half day going to the West Coast (Piha and Bethells) and the other half in the city (War Memorial Museum, One Tree Hill or Mt Eden, Kelly Tarlton’s)

3)    A day on Waiheke for a wine tour (But see Napier)

4)    If you want to Bungy try to fit in Sky City.  (Do the Bridge Climb in Sydney not here)

Tauranga:-

1)    Take a chopper to White Island, an active volcano if you have never walked on one.  OR  Go to Whakatane and take a boat trip to the Island.

2)    Go to Rotorua, lots there but make sure you do a Maori Concert Party  (Mitai or Tamaki).  Other brilliant view is from the top of the Skyline and there is a restaurant there.
 

Napier:-

1)    This is the place to do a wine tour.

2)    Walk round town to see Art Deco.


Wellington:-

1)    Weta Workshop Tour.  Te Papa. Cable Car.  All in an “easy” day.

2)    Mt Victoria with one or two of the above
 

Akaroa Harbour:-

1)    Probably go to Christchurch via Diamond Harbour, do the Antarctic display at the airport, look round Christchurch and then return to Akaroa via Little River

2)    Cruise on the Harbour and walk round the town; very different for NZ.


Dunedin:-

1)    The Taieri Gorge train.

2)    A day trip to the Albatross Colony at Taiaroa Head and also Larnach Castle.

 

Mike

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