Very average holiday to New Caledonia/Vanuatu.Weather fine but there was no onboard atmosphere. Go somewhere else. Islands are Nice places but nothing special that you'd not see in Aust. Was certainly not as we expected. Ship is old and the reno's are minimal. Is ok for 3½ star I guess but if you want to have that holiday of a lifetime don't do this boat.
Getting on and off is well organised. Meals in dining rooms are great. Plenty of activities. British executive staff very keen and friendly ( but it stops there) Ship info and communications ...
all done for ya
we where on the final cruise for the pacific sun and enjoyed every minute, didn,t want for anything.
the food was excellent staff where brilliant and even the boat was on its last cruise the staff where still taking pride in the ship eg painting and cleaning. have already booked next cruise with P.O
Fun Fun Fun!
It was a real privilege sailing on P&O Australia's Pacific Sun on its third last cruise. Our family of 4 boarded in Brisbane on 17th June 2012 for the 7 night tropical Queensland tour visiting Airlie Beach, Cairns, Port Douglas and Willis Island.
Boarding was a breeze as per usual at the Hamilton cruise ship terminal in Brisbane. It's possible to park a few metres away form the luggage drop-off point, unload and head around the corner to leave our car with Portside Parking (highly recommended). It's then just a 4 - 5 minute walk back to th...e terminal where my family had already joined the short queue. I could have waited for the free shuttle bus but the walk was a bit quicker. We arrived about 30 minutes before the recommended check-in time and queued for only 10 - 15 minutes. We were then allowed to board immediately. What amazed me then was our luggage was already at our cabin when we arrived. On other cruises it doesn't usually arrive until late afternoon or evening. Being the smallest (47,800 GT) an oldest (1986) ship in P&O Australia's fleet, we didn't have any high expectations of Pacific Sun. But everyone we had spoken to who had sailed on it before spoke very highly of it and commented on how much fun they had. Well, they were right. We had an amazing time on Pacific Sun too. It's a shame that on 8th July 2012 Pacific Sun will be leaving Australia to start a new life as a Casino ship off the coast of China. It would have been a treat to sail on it again. First impressions ...... we loved it. Yes, the reception area looked a somewhat marbled and 80's but it also had a traditional charm and warmth. It was also very clean, well maintained and very efficiently run. The deck plans in the brochure didn't appear to show much outside deck area but it had plenty. The layout was also quite different to other ships we had sailed on (Sun Princess, Pacific Dawn & Rhapsody Of The Seas) and it seemed that around each corner was a hidden surprise. One of it's best features was Deck 9 which was a complete entertainment floor consisting of bars, lounges, night club, coffee lounge, casino, theatre and photo/art galleries. One of the best surprises was our cabin (E74, deck 7), it was huge for a 4 berth. The bunks were staggered, an upper and lower adjacent to the window and the opposite pair nearer to the bathroom. This meant that there was more room in the middle of the cabin. There were 4 good sized wardrobes, each with a safe and the bathroom was quite a good size for a cabin .... similar to a small ensuite in a house. The only thing missing was a bar fridge, same on Rhapsody Of The Seas. The steward would bring an ice bucket when requested. A couple of times, the steward didn't vacuum and left the bathroom floors a little too wet. Generally, he was pretty good but was a bit forgetful and needed reminding for the odd requests. And like all good cruises, he provided chocolates with the turn-down and towel animals!
Fantastic family break 8/15/12 (215)
Thank you staff of the pacific sun for an amazing time on board your ship. We are a family of five and there is not one of us who didn't come off with some memories that will last a life time. The cabin was always survived and our cleaner was very friendly and helpfull. The entertainment was good late at night and the kids couldn't stay away from turtle shak and HQ. the staff at the kids club are amazing and in our eyes are a asset to the P&O brand. The food was plentiful and of a high standard and we always ate straight away and had a seat to ...dine at. the bar prices are reasonable seeing we're you are it's fair. The photos were a little costly and over photo shoped but still reasonable, we didn't see any aggressive people at any bar on board at any time. Over all it's a well oiled machine and great value for money seeing how much food and entertainment there is to enjoy. If you read some bad reviews about this ship or the P&O brand then think again as we rated to be a exceptional family holiday.P.S be kind and tip those people who looked after you and your kids to have such a good time as there on a very low income and rely on our genorosity to make up there short fall.(be kind) and a tip to you drinkers is pick a waiter for the duration of the trip at the bar and slip him or her a $50 and you will always get fast service and the spirits seem to be of the double strength flavor. Enjoy and meet new people from OZ and NZ Food, kids clubs, friendly, inexpensive.
You know what, sure the boat is ageing, sure the weather was crap and sure the stays could have been longer but you know, i had a fantastic time and am sorry to see the ship and its crew be seperated. The people were beautiful, the music ecclectic, the cruisers all ages and it was really refreshing to have no barriers between ages or classes. I loved it and im not a bogan. If you want QE2 then you need to pay QE2 prices. We got a quad for $330 each last minute. P & O and Pacific Sun, your a credit to your industry and I cant wait to book my next cruise wtih you.
The food, staff, entertainment, energy, party atmosphere. Everything was perfect.
Best Cruise Ever
I just came back from the Pacific Sun farewell cruise and I have to say being my first cruise it was just amazing. I loved every moment of it. The entertainment, staff, food our own personal stewards were all so good. I'm deffinetly returning back for my second cruise with P&O later on In the year! If your looking for a relaxing holiday I recommend P&O cruise for sure. The staff were all very lovely. Our steward took care of our cabin and cleaned it up twice a day. What more could you ask for then coming back to a ready made nicely cleaned cabi...n. I made friends with some of the staff that will be friends for a lifetime. It's sad to see the Pacific Sun go. She may be old but is deffinetly gold. I loved the service, the staff the food and entertainment. Everything was perfect.
Is P&O past it?
It's a tired old boat that is about to go out of service. But, old or not, it's the staff who are the problem. Not the cabin staff who were fantastic; not the behind the scenes staff who worked tirelessly to ensure a smooth trip; but, the public face staff, who, almost without exception, were horrible.
Here's just a few examples. Consistently, the publish times and dates for events was incorrect. The kids centre for under 6's was published as being open on day one, but wasn't. You could register, but my wife was given the rounds of the tabl...e for coming down to register with our daughter. We should have known, apparently. Having been assured once on board that our access/pay cards were all we needed, she then needed to go back to our room to get photo ID. During the next few days, we took our daughter into the kids club and out again a number of times - because she had to be signed in to each event separately - only to find that she didn't have to signed in separately. I went down for breakfast one morning, without everyone else in our party, and was sent away - rudely enough that I am writing this review. The restaurant was empty, and I was early, by about 20mins, but, that didn't matter, parties had to arrive together. I'll update further bad experiences as they come to hand, but, for a first cruise, I would not be rushing back to P&O. I had to take a break from work, the was still Internet and I had global roams to my phone still worked, Old boat, staff set in routine, formulaic approach to an old world experience.
We sailed on the Pacific Sun for Week Tropique. We were rather disappointed with the cruise overall - we are in our mid 20s and found that the majority of the shows and activities were definitely catered to those older than us. We researched the cruise, being avid sports fans, and found that all nrl games would be shown live - not a single game of sport was shown in the sports bar. We booked a shore tour - the photo on the website did not link up to the tour we went on. When we went to the lido to eat, numerous older people would push in withou...t manners and wouldn't share table space when it was very limited. The juice and coffee machines didn't work some mornings either so we only ended up spending more and more money In room service - feel sorry for the staff who we heard were paid only $40/day Even though the boat is about to be decomissioned doesn't mean that the condition should be ignored if you are still charging full priced fares
We got off the Pacific Sun this morning (Sunday 8th April) after a 7 night cruise. We had a great time. The only thing that we weren't happy with, was the price of the photos and also some of the prices of the drinks. The service on the ship was excellence, especially a beautiful lady who is a waitress, her name is [name removed] in the Bordeaux Restaurant. If anyone would like a great holiday, I would say take a cruise, as it is very relaxing.
Food and visiting the Islands
The photos were selling for too much
Had the best holiday ever!
Overall our experience was excellent! I went on cruise N210 out of Newcastle with my wife and two daughters 15 and 17. We all had a fantastic time.
We arrived at Newcastle by car got dropped off right next to the big marquee tent at the dock. The rain wasn't a problem at all. First night at sea was a bit rough, but hey, you can't blame the ship for the weather. Next day was sunny and the weather just got better and better from there. The food and entertainment was excellent. We steered clear of the bistro because the restaurants were j...ust too good. Why would you want to go to a Bistro, queue up and fight for a table when you can sit down and be spoiled by the excellent waiters in the restaurants? Having said that we did eat at the bistro a couple of times for lunch and breakfast on port days. First port was Vila. We went on the Pango Cove advanced snorkeling tour. It was awesome. Nice clear water, well run tour and an hour and a half of snorkeling over some excellent coral reefs with loads of beautiful fish. After that we went Duty free shopping in town and had a great time despite being asked a thousand times if we needed a taxi. lol Our kids bought some really nice dresses and souvenirs from the markets near the ship port. Next day was Mystery Island. Absolutely beautiful, pristine, island in paradise. We lounged around on the beach in the shade of the big palms, went shopping, got hair braided and went snorkeling. Plenty of coral and fish but not as good as Pango Cove for the avid snorkeler, but still very good. What more can I say. Third stop was Noumea. We did the City Highlights tour with a 1.5 hour stop at Anse Vata Beach. It was a really good guided tour on an air conditioned coach with several stops and morning tea included. Very nice, but prices are surprisingly higher than one might expect them to be. Not really the place to go shopping for a bargain but it's a taste of France in the South Pacific. The best place to get souvenirs was in the ship terminal building up stairs.
The only way to holiday !!
Just back from the twelve night Indonesian Adventure, well they call the Sun the fun ship and i would agree . My wife and I were first time cruisers and having read some offish reviews we were a bit aprehensive, shouldn't have been, every thing was so well organised we were very impressed. we were treated so well by the friendly staff it was hard to pick a favourite, they were all excellent! In fact we were spoilt rotten and have already started planning our next trip.
I was a Chef for 40 years and the Restaurant meals passed every test, but...i really must recommend the Seafood and Steak Restaurant 'Churchills' you do pay an extra $25. 00 but the food and service was the tops especially young [name removed] who my wife would have loved to take home with her. The only complaint about the whole experience would be Lombok which has a long way to go before it can be called a tourist destination, the next trip I would stay on the ship. All in all a fantastic holiday
First cruise and loved it
Great food Great staff and found fellow passengers very friendly, even tho the buffett was packed many people were happy to share a table or share a table in the atlantis room. im going to take my whole family next time but not on the Pacific Sun because i hear its going to be scrapped soon.
Very Cheap cruise, Friendly passengers Great staff.
cant get drunk too often
A Few Small Disappointments...Just A Few!
I have read most of the other reviews and guess that P&O has made an effort to overcome some of the negatives. An example - there is no charge to use the adults only outdoor/indoor area, the Oasis. Our cruise was for 10 nights from Newcastle to Cairns leaving 17 March 2012. There was just my wife and I - no kids.
We found the embarkation process very efficient and we were on board in no time. Disembarkation was just as smooth. Our cabin was excellent, although the toilet didn't flush on a regular basis. Our cabin was serviced twice a da...
Pacific Sun 8 nights - Great!!!!
My husband and 12 year old have just returned from a fantastic stay on the Pacific Sun. This was our first ever cruise, so we don't have anything to compare to, but we enjoyed ourselves so much we will definately cruise again!!
Our embarkation was swift and quick with our suitcases quickly arriving in our cabin shortly after we arrived on board. Our cabin was small but well set out with two bunks in it and a small but efficient bathroom. There were four wardrobes (each containing a shelf and a safe), so each passenger had their own storag...e space. The cabin was serviced twice daily by our wonderful cabin steward (Handry). Food. So much food! We opted to each most of our meals at the Bordeaux restaurant, as we liked being waited on!! On our first night, we had a lovely little booth just for us 3, so upon leaving we asked to book that table again for the next night - no problem! We did this each night, so it meant we had the same lovely table and also the same wonderful waiters (Freddy and Sammie). We tended to be put on 'shared tables' during our lunches, and although it was lovely to meet other people and to chat, we also really enjoyed the more quiet family dinners. There was a standard menu that was available to each dinner, but they also had the 'specials for the day' menu which changed daily, so there was always plenty of variety!! We ate a 3 course meal for most lunches and dinners, fantastic!! We sometimes ordered a bottle of wine for dinner, but would only drink half of it, then our waiters would write our cabin number on it, and store it until the next night. We would appear for dinner and they would already have our wine waiting in a ice bucket ready for us! Our daughter would sometimes take along a can of coke to have with her meals, but towards the end she was so happy with the lovely iced water that she didn't bother (we had taken a 12 pack of cokes along with us). The first two nights out of Fremantle were very rough, even the crew were saying they felt a little sea sick! Luckily for me I had started taking Avomine sea sick tablets the night before and continued taking them throughout our cruise. They were fantastic, I still felt the 'funny feeling' from the movement, but it didn't make me feel sick. My daughter started feeling quite sick the first night, couldn't get out of bed or eat. We started her on the 'Kwells chewable' sea sick tablets I had taken along for her, and by the next morning she was feeling much better. I am very glad we took our own tablets along with us, as the ones they sold on board in the little shop were only 'health food' type giner tablets. To have seen a doctor to get stronger tablets would have meant paying a doctor fee. One night in the restaurant, when our daughter hadn't taken a sea sickness tablet that day, she was feeling a little 'seedy', and our waiter Freddy ordered her a green apple from the chef, this was delivered to her all carved up in the shape of a swan - so pretty! The staff said that green apples help them, and they like to eat one every day!! We got off by tender at Geraldton, didn't do a tour, just had a walk through the harbour front and the town. Was nice to get off the ship and also to just enjoy how the tenders work. We had also booked a tour through P&O in Broome. This was great as it meant we were one of the first ones to get off, and we didn't have to queue up to get a tender ticket! We enjoyed our 4 hour Broome tour, will have to return one day! The swell was too rough at Exmouth for the ship to anchor and to use the tenders, so Exmouth was cancelled and everybodys P&O tours and shuttle tickets were immediately refunded to our account. The ship put on extra activities for the day to keep everybody busy. The swell from Exmouth followed us back to Fremantle, making for a bumpy ride home (thank goodness for the sea-sick tablets!). The last night we could hear things falling and rolling around in other peoples cabins, it was rough!! Don't want to complain, but we could quite easily hear noises from the cabins either side of us. One elderly lady next to us talked loudly and continually from about 6am!! The other cabin had a family of 4 in it. It wasn't that either of them were being obnoxious or over the top, it was just easy to hear all those everyday noises. Luckily all was quiet late at night!
Absolutely fantastic! Can't wait to do it again!
We were on the N125 cruise leaving Sydney on 9th July and returning 17th July. This was our first cruise, and before we went, I read some of the mixed reviews, but from the start to the finish I couldn't understand why anyone would complain at all! Cruising is the best value for your money. The cabins are reasonably spacious and there is plenty of room to unpack most of your things. There was so much food; we ate at the Burgundy and Bordeaux restaurants, and these were a good way to meet other people. We ate breakfast, lunch and some dinners...at the buffet, and it was all wonderful. My only concern was that there is so much food wastage. There was so much to do, and everyone is catered for as far as onboard activities are concerned. We like trivia quizzes, and there are plenty of those, as well as Pictionary and Scattergory games etc. There are craft classes, dance classes, a reasonably well-equipped gym, different movies on your cabin tv every day, art auctions, casino, and so many things on at the same time that the only problem was working out what activities you were going to do, and which ones you'd have to miss out on, and when you were going to fit in mealtimes in between! Our teenage kids had their own activities but could also participate in many of the adult activities. Of course you don't have to participate in anything, and many people would lie on the deckchairs or on window seats reading. The entertainment at night in the Atlantis Theatre was fantastic, and the great thing about it is that afterwards you come out of this theatre and you don't have to go back to your car and drive home - you are already home. We didn't buy any drinks on board, and they are quite expensive, so be careful as it can add up, but as we are not big drinkers anyway, we did not feel as though we were missing out. The kids bought a few soft drinks and ice-creams from the NZ ice-cream shop. We did buy duty-free drinks at the end to take home at reasonable prices. We didn't buy tickets for the Tchou-Tchou train in Noumea, but as soon as we got off-board we were greeted by a girl selling tickets for a busline for $50 per family, which drives to all the tourist spots and you can get off and stay as long as you like, and then catch the next bus when it comes around. This was far better value than the yellow train, but you miss out on a commentary. Mystery Island was great for snorkelling, but there isn't anything else on the tiny island. The locals come over to sell their wares, but you are rather limited in what you can buy, as you can't bring much of their stuff into Australia, unless you want to buy a sarong or souvenir made in China or Thailand. Many of the girls and women got their hair braided.
Excellent Family Holiday - Well Worth It!
Went on New Year Eve Cruise to Vanuatu and New Caledonia. Service on board was exceptional - couldn't fault it. Crew were all lovely, polite and happy to help. Our kids (aged 8, 7 and 3) had the best holiday they had ever had and there were plenty of activities on board to keep them entertained. Didn't see the older kids much as they were off in the kids club having a ball with the other kids. The younger bloke trotted around with us most of the time as he doesn't like being without mum and dad for too long, but there were plenty of other ...kids his age that coped very well in the club. Entertainment and food on board was fantastic. Ports were all good too. Noumea didn't have much to show for, but the rest were all great. Though shore tours were a bit pricey, they are recommended for people with a family in tow as everything is prearranged and accommodating. Stateroom was fine - we had an inner cabin on level 6. No window of course, but since we were not in the room very much it didn't matter. I'd advise to try for a cabin mid-ship though as we were at the stern and heard a fair bit of propeller noise when docking at port in early mornings - but thats OK. We used it as our alarm clock as without a window, we didn't know if it was day or night! Don't take any notice of all the negative reviews here - just whingy whiny tourists expecting slavery of their hosts. If you haven't been on a cruise before, I recommend them to everyone - new port each day, don't have to drive every day, don't have to pack/unpack all the time, food all cooked for you, dishes washed, bathroom cleaned multiple times per day, beds freshly made daily, and kids clubs are great - the perfect holiday. Activities, entertainment, port stop overs and kids club all great. Food galore. Crew all fantastic. If i have to pick something it would be the "market sales" on board - all cheap rubbish - but easily avoided.
Would never travel with P&O Australia again. after 32 cruises, 7 of which with P&O Australia, the service has dropped, and the ships are getting worse. why id australia always getting the crap outdated ships that the rest of the world no longer wants to use? i will stick with P&O UK and Princess cruises in future.
The ports, crew tried their best under cercomstances. cabin was presented well, steward was very friendly.
The ship is old and trashy, and an embarrasment to the P&O line. when docked beside a Princess cruises vessel it looks like som...
This was our first cruise and yes it is an older ship but the atmosphere was great. We are booked to go with P&O again later this year and can not wait. We have just got home to the reality of cooking your own food and carrying it to the table and realised how we got used to being treated this way in our 12 nights onboard. We already miss the new friends we met onboard. Only 9 months until we do it all again - we can not wait!
From the point of P&O and the Staff everything was excellent. Great food, cabins were excellent, entertainment good, t...
A Good Cruise at Very Good Prices
Cruise number N207. Just got back today from a 10 night cruise out of Newcastle. This cruise was great, my wife and I had one of the best holidays in our lifetime.
The best part was the absolutely terrific excellent staff on board who took care of our everyday needs. Sure the ship has some short comings like a very busy buffet with less than enough seating but the quality of the food and staff made up for it.
For the price, you try and get 3 meals a day, top entertainment, good accommodation and a superb itinerary anywhere else and you wo...uld be hard pressed. We had a mix of age groups and we all got on fine. Not once was any of the staff bad to us, they are truly P & O's success for there business. I would definitely recommend this cruise to anyone. Great staff, good food, good shows and a great itinerary. Overcrowding in buffet, had to turn up early for the shows to get a good seat.
Nice Long Weekend Away
Just recently returned from a 3 night cruise out of Sydney on the Sun. Overall the experience was good. Had read some previous scathing reviews so was very circumspect before travelling. Yes the Sun is the oldest of the P&O fleet however I believe it has heaps of character and charm as appossed to some of the modern ships cruising today. The ship has had a refurbishment and it shows. Although, the aft pool deck area and lido pool deck could do with some updated furniture and colour scheme. My twin cabin on Empress deck was spotless and spaci...ous and the bathroom in good working order. Our cabin steward was a lovely guy who looked after us very well. staff on the ship mostly were very friendly and great with service. The food in both the dining rooms was impressive. The buffet style food on deck 10 is good but don't expect anything terrific. The cruise I was on was full to capacity I think, so the ship had a crowed atmosphere most of the time. Those wanting a more relaxed and gentle passenger mix I would advise to avoid the 3 night cruises as these attract the party crowd. The security on board is tight and that's a reasurring fact. Be aware that the drink prices are on par with your pub prices on land. Plenty to do on board with heaps of activities and entertainment. Lots of quite places to retreat also ;ie library and bars/lounges and sitting areas during the day. I would suggest to future travellers to go onboard with an open and don't expect 5 star service and entertainment. You get what you pay for and I believe it's good value for money A reasonable priced all inclusive holiday Ship sailed at 11pm from Sydney and not 4pm as stated on intinery and cruise ticket
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