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Princess cruise tour to the GBR


margord

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Hi:

 

We were on the Sapphire Princess (12 day cruise) March of this year, from NZ to Sydney and did the 6 day post tour to the GBR after we arrived in Sydney. In my opinion, (and I've taken over 40 cruises), this was the best cruise and land tour that I've ever taken. We did a Princess land tour several years ago in Alaska, 5 days, and I thought that was great until this one, which was just wonderful in every aspect of the cruise and land tour. It was our first time to NZ and Australia and it's definitely a cruise I would do again if I could. The only thing I didn't like was the long plane ride to get there and back. We live in Iowa and we had to travel quite a distance to even start our trip. We went from home to Chicago and then to LAX and then flew to Auckland. If I were to do this one again, I would fly there and take the ship back. It would be a 30 day cruise. I can never sleep on planes, nor get comfortable, so I was about the only one walking around the whole time. There were only two small things that made the cruise tour a little less than spectacular. We were to spend an afteroon at the zoo in Brisbane, and were only there one hour, which was a big disappointment to everyone. Then at Surfers Paradise, our itinerary said we had a morning tour but then in the afternoon, we were on our own. It turned out to be a whole day tour on the bus, and we didn't have enough time to walk around the beach at Surfer's Paradise. I don't know why they advertised it as a half day and it turned out to be all day on the bus, which was the least favorite thing we did...the bus ride. As far as the GBR was concerned. You were on a large boat with a lot of people to get there. Once there, they had a large platform, where you could snorkle, eat, do the helmet dive whatever, and they also had a small submarine you could go on and things like that. A lot to do once you got to the platform. I was surprised that a lot of young mothers with babies went on this tour. I just didn't think it was a place for babies, but they seemed to be having a great time. It took a couple of hours to reach the platform at the GBR on this boat. I would say there were maybe 300 people on this boat to get to the GBR. For some reason I thought it would just be the people on our Princess cruise tour, but it was not. Our Princess guide Leslie was the best ever. If you get her, you are very lucky. I watched "Age of Love" last night on tv, and they were in Melbourne and it brought back such memories. This was the best destination for a cruise that we've been on so far and we're getting ready to take a cruise to Hawaii in two months, but we've been there many times. I absolutely loved NZ and Australia and I want to go back. If you have any specific questions, I would be happy to answer them for you.

 

Happy Cruising.....Sparkle 10 (Anita):)

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Anita,

 

Thank you so much for replying. I would love to do the tour you describe which includes Surfer's Paradise but cannot find Princess offering that tour. Looks like it is either Sydney to GBR and back to Sydney or Sydney to Ayers Rock then to GBR. I am not interested in Ayers Rock but would love to do the coast. So with that in mind we will probably just do the Sydney to GBR and back to Sydney tour. Thanks for all the descriptions.

 

Marilee

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Hi:

 

We were on the Sapphire Princess (12 day cruise) March of this year, from NZ to Sydney and did the 6 day post tour to the GBR after we arrived in Sydney. In my opinion, (and I've taken over 40 cruises), this was the best cruise and land tour that I've ever taken. We did a Princess land tour several years ago in Alaska, 5 days, and I thought that was great until this one, which was just wonderful in every aspect of the cruise and land tour. It was our first time to NZ and Australia and it's definitely a cruise I would do again if I could. The only thing I didn't like was the long plane ride to get there and back. We live in Iowa and we had to travel quite a distance to even start our trip. We went from home to Chicago and then to LAX and then flew to Auckland. If I were to do this one again, I would fly there and take the ship back. It would be a 30 day cruise. I can never sleep on planes, nor get comfortable, so I was about the only one walking around the whole time. There were only two small things that made the cruise tour a little less than spectacular. We were to spend an afteroon at the zoo in Brisbane, and were only there one hour, which was a big disappointment to everyone. Then at Surfers Paradise, our itinerary said we had a morning tour but then in the afternoon, we were on our own. It turned out to be a whole day tour on the bus, and we didn't have enough time to walk around the beach at Surfer's Paradise. I don't know why they advertised it as a half day and it turned out to be all day on the bus, which was the least favorite thing we did...the bus ride. As far as the GBR was concerned. You were on a large boat with a lot of people to get there. Once there, they had a large platform, where you could snorkle, eat, do the helmet dive whatever, and they also had a small submarine you could go on and things like that. A lot to do once you got to the platform. I was surprised that a lot of young mothers with babies went on this tour. I just didn't think it was a place for babies, but they seemed to be having a great time. It took a couple of hours to reach the platform at the GBR on this boat. I would say there were maybe 300 people on this boat to get to the GBR. For some reason I thought it would just be the people on our Princess cruise tour, but it was not. Our Princess guide Leslie was the best ever. If you get her, you are very lucky. I watched "Age of Love" last night on tv, and they were in Melbourne and it brought back such memories. This was the best destination for a cruise that we've been on so far and we're getting ready to take a cruise to Hawaii in two months, but we've been there many times. I absolutely loved NZ and Australia and I want to go back. If you have any specific questions, I would be happy to answer them for you.

 

Happy Cruising.....Sparkle 10 (Anita):)

 

Wonderful Infomation! Thanks, for sharing. Were you on the Quicksilver tour? If not, whom? PinkSuit

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Hi:

 

It was the post cruise tour with Princess. They took care of us from start to finish. It was our most expensive cruise we've ever taken, but well worth the money. I would love to do the Princess cruise where you fly there and taken the ship back to LA. It's a 30 day cruise. That will have to wait until we retire.

 

We have Tahiti cruise booked with Princess for next year, which ends in Hawaii. We've never been to Tahiti, and I'm really looking forward to it.

 

Happy cruising.....Sparkle 10 (Anita):D

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Thanks for responding. I hear you in terms of cost. Everything is costly it seems. I have a group of 18 and trying to organize everything is very involved. Although, one of the main reason for us going on this trip is to see the GBR. PinkSuit

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Hi Pinksuit:

 

When I booked the NZ/Australia cruise with Princess, I noticed it didn't include the "GBR" and that is one of the great destinations I had on my list to see, so I knew I had to find a tour that took me there after we docked in Sydney. We flew from Sydney to Queensland, Port Douglas, gateway to the Great Barrier Reef. We stayed overnight there at the Sheraton Mirage Resort. We then took the high speed catamaran for a full day tour of the GBR. Then we had another overnight stay at the Sheraton Mirage Resort. A very beautiful hotel. We then flew to the Gold Coast and stayed in Port Douglas for two nights at the Sheraton Mirage Surfers Paradise. We visited Byron Bay, Australia's most easterly point and climbed a lighthouse there. We then went to Brisbane and visited Steve Irwin's world famous zoo. This is where we only got an hours visit, instead of all afternoon, as was planned. We then flew back to Sydney and stayed two nights at the Intercontinental Sydney Hotel. Two days wasn't enough time in Sydney to see everything. We barely scratched the surface of places to see, and things to do. We did take a evening dinner cruise in the harbour which was really great. My next time there, I'm going to allow for at least a week in Sydney.

 

Happy Cruising.....Sparkle 10 (Anita)

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Hi:

 

It was the post cruise tour with Princess. They took care of us from start to finish. It was our most expensive cruise we've ever taken, but well worth the money. I would love to do the Princess cruise where you fly there and taken the ship back to LA. It's a 30 day cruise. That will have to wait until we retire.

 

We have Tahiti cruise booked with Princess for next year, which ends in Hawaii. We've never been to Tahiti, and I'm really looking forward to it.

 

Happy cruising.....Sparkle 10 (Anita):D

 

Thanks for the wonderful information. We did the Tahiti to Hawaii cruise a few years back. Let me know if I can be of any help for information. I will tell you that we loved this cruise so much that 2 years later we went back and did the Tahitian Princess throughout French Polynesia. Both were fabulous. If at all possible stay a few extra days in Tahiti.

 

Marilee

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Hi Marilee:

 

This will be our first time to Tahiti, we're booked on the Tahitian Princess. We've been to Hawaii several times and Hawaii is one of my favorite destinations. We are planning a two night pre-cruise in an OWB at the Intercontinental. Do you have any suggestions for tours to take on the cruise? From everything I've read, Tahiti is so wonderful that everyone wants to go back time and again. I'm sure that's how we'll find it. My DH isn't as excited as I am about Tahiti. He thinks it's going to be just like Hawaii. I tried telling him all about it and how different it is....I guess I'm just going to have to show him.:D

 

Happy Cruising.....Sparkle 10 (Anita)

 

PS We're booked on the May 8, 2008, cruise from Tahiti to Hawaii. Do you know if this is a good time to visit Tahiti, weather-wise?

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Hi Marilee:

 

This will be our first time to Tahiti, we're booked on the Tahitian Princess. We've been to Hawaii several times and Hawaii is one of my favorite destinations. We are planning a two night pre-cruise in an OWB at the Intercontinental. Do you have any suggestions for tours to take on the cruise? From everything I've read, Tahiti is so wonderful that everyone wants to go back time and again. I'm sure that's how we'll find it. My DH isn't as excited as I am about Tahiti. He thinks it's going to be just like Hawaii. I tried telling him all about it and how different it is....I guess I'm just going to have to show him.:D

 

Happy Cruising.....Sparkle 10 (Anita)

 

PS We're booked on the May 8, 2008, cruise from Tahiti to Hawaii. Do you know if this is a good time to visit Tahiti, weather-wise?

 

 

 

We stayed in the OWB at the Intercontental and it was fabulous. You won't be sorry. Make sure you go into town and hit the Marche (market). Of course you can do that your first day on the ship. (At least for our first day we were on the ship it stayed over night in Papetee.) They (the market) have beautiful flower arrangements $15-$25 that everyone was buying for their cabin on the ship. It is about the only inexpensive thing in Tahiti and they were beautiful and lasted the entire cruise. Also upstairs at the market are souvineers you may be interested in. They have some inexpensive black pearls that are nice gifts to bring home.

 

On Moorea the first time we did a ship tour to a motu (island) with lunch and swimming. We sat on the sand in the water and they brought sting rays right up on our laps. As we stood in the water they rubbed against our legs like pussy cats. The second time we did an island tour. The first water tour was the best. On Bora Bora the first time we did an island tour. The second time we just got off the ship and hooked up a snorkling tour. Of course second time we were in Bora Bora over night. Interesting to see the island but the water is just fabulous. Also if you have time stop by Bloody Mary's for lunch and make sure you use their bathrooms. The place to wash your hands is quite unique.

 

One more thing. Did you book your air through Princess? They normally use Air Tahiti Nui. You might want to call them to see if they have your reservation and get seat assignments if you don't have them already. The airline seat configuration is 2 seats, 5 seats and 2 seats. You really want to get the 2 seats as one is a window and the other an isle.

 

Marilee

 

P.S. My DH was as excited as me either. He sure changed his mind. I had no trouble talking him into going back.

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Hi Again:

 

Yes, we booked air through Princess. When we went to NZ/Australia March of this year with Princess, our TA tried to get us two seats together and she wasn't able to do it and that was a very long flight. It would be nice to have two seats together, if we can get them this time.

 

Thanks for all of your help.

 

Happy Cruising.....Sparkle 10 (Anita)

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Hi Again:

 

Yes, we booked air through Princess. When we went to NZ/Australia March of this year with Princess, our TA tried to get us two seats together and she wasn't able to do it and that was a very long flight. It would be nice to have two seats together, if we can get them this time.

 

Thanks for all of your help.

 

Happy Cruising.....Sparkle 10 (Anita)

 

Just look the number up and call them today. Hopefully that will work.

 

Marilee

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Sparkle10: My wife and I went to Tahiti about 4 years ago ... it had never been on our list of "to do"s but I got a grant to do some research there so off we went. We really had a ball. My wife had been to Hawaii a number of times back in the 50's and 60's (before it was such a big tourist destination) and she felt Tahiti was like Hawaii back then.

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