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9 Night South Pacific Cruise from Sydney

9 Night South Pacific Cruise from Sydney (Australia)

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Carnival Spirit
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Itinerary

  • Day 1
    Sydney (Australia)
  • Day 2
    Cruising
  • Day 3
    Cruising
  • Day 4
    Noumea
  • Day 5
    Mare
  • Day 6
    Isle of Pines (New Caledonia)
  • Day 7
    Isle of Pines (New Caledonia)
  • Day 8
    Cruising
  • Day 9
    Cruising
  • Day 10
    Sydney (Australia)

Carnival Spirit

Carnival Spirit - Carnival Cruise Line

Pros

Water slides, new eateries and bars -- with exceedingly friendly crew

Cons

Garish design of many public rooms; no alcohol beverage packages

Bottom Line

Fun activities, good food and great service deliver a top-value holiday for all ages


Cruise Reviews

Sail Date: February 2019
To be honest I didn’t even know what carnival was like when I first booked. It had a 3 days flash sale on and I jumped in as the prices looked too good. I literally had to google where noumea was after I paid for the cruise. I went with ... Read More
To be honest I didn’t even know what carnival was like when I first booked. It had a 3 days flash sale on and I jumped in as the prices looked too good. I literally had to google where noumea was after I paid for the cruise. I went with my partner and it was truly an awesome cruise. First and foremost we got the faster to the fun programe and it probably took us 10 mins to get on board through customs immigrations etc. Took us about 5 days to get familiar with the boat, there was so much to do. The activities keeps you busy from 8am in the morning till 11pm or late. The cruise director Eli went above and beyond to make things comfortable for all of us. From embarkation to tenders to every shows, he was there to talk us through. Drinks prices were reasonable. We had both the Mad Hatter’s tea and Green Eggs and ham breakfast for $10 each per event. Which was super cheap given the amount of food there was. The staff remembered our names by heart. Trivias, a live game of cluedo, hasbro family games, comedy shows and playlist productions kept us on our toes all day long. All tendering process was smooth and pleasant. Would go on carnival again and again. And last but not the least, the islands were like little paradise. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
It had been a few months between holidays and, getting restless, Kirsten suggested a last minute cruise she’d seen on sale. I started dreaming of all the meals we’d be eating without needing to prepare, shop, cook or clean up and ... Read More
It had been a few months between holidays and, getting restless, Kirsten suggested a last minute cruise she’d seen on sale. I started dreaming of all the meals we’d be eating without needing to prepare, shop, cook or clean up and without much hesitation, I was in. The cruise was a 12-day South Pacific jaunt aboard the Carnival Spirit, departing and arriving back to our home city of Sydney which we believe to be one of the most gorgeous ports in the world. I must admit we were both cautiously optimistic about our decision. We’d seen the likes of P&O, Carnival and various equivalents leave Sydney packed with Aussies, and having experienced a luxury European river cruise on Scenic and an upmarket Cunard cruise aboard Queen Elizabeth, we weren’t sure if the ‘big fun ship’ was our style. Thinking ahead wistfully about the work and housework we’d enjoy NOT doing for 12 whole days and nights, we were totally on board (so to speak) with the trip to Noumea, Mystery Island, Denarau, Suva and finally Mare aboard a floating hotel. Apart from Fiji, these were new discoveries for us, some new world experiences for these two travel lovers. The Carnival Spirit, playfully referred to as the Fun Ship, holds approx. 2400 passengers and 930 crew. We boarded at around midday on what can only be described as a dream experience of Customs, going straight from being dropped off directly outside the passenger terminal at Circular Quay, to getting our bags taken off our hands before entering the building and breezing through the customs checks and scanners, a quick check in to our room and onto the ship. We could then go straight to our booked Stateroom where our room keys were sitting in a box at our door waiting for us. The best in Sydney, I’d say. We were all feeling festive and ready to escape the city on our adventure at sea. Once we’d slowly exited Sydney Heads, and waved goodbye to the pilot boat from our love-cabana for two, we headed back to the room to get ready for dinner, and discovered a slight glitch in the merriment – my bag was held up because I had a power board and apparently they are a no go onboard. We had to line up in some lower part of the ship along with all the other people with power boards, irons, or alcohol, all of which are not permitted, so we could open the locked bag and hand over the bugger. We were told we could request one of the ship’s own power boards should we need one, which we did. Go figure. You couldn’t take your own, but you could borrow one at no charge. We experienced our first dinner in the main dining room and took ourselves on a tour of the Carnival Spirit. It’s hard to describe her interior as it’s not completely one style. It’s sort of a mish-mash of themed rooms, somewhat like the special hotel rooms you could hire back in the 80’s. Carnival calls it ”The World’s Great Architectural Styles”. You have the Empire Dining Room which is Egyptian with lots of gold and rich colours, and the Pharoah’s Room where the main shows are performed (also Egyptian themed). The Lido (buffet area) feels like sideshow alley and then there’s a jungle-themed walk, a Chinese themed bar (without Chinese food, or any food for that matter), a Japanese restaurant, an 80’s disco, and a couple of leadlight glass and dark wood detailed areas giving an old English pub feel. The main lobby and bar was small but packed a glitz punch of gold everywhere you looked, fresco’s on the ceiling and 3 glass elevators. It was like being in the Sistine Chapel inside Harrods. To top off our self-guided ship tour, we discovered the Casino, shopping alleys and picture viewing galleries all there to entice those precious dollars from your pocket on a day at sea, which of course didn’t feel like you were really spending because you were using a plastic room card to pay. We were fairly happy to find that the cocktails, beer and wine were all very reasonably priced, at pub prices rather than an upmarket bar or restaurant prices. However, if you didn’t want VB, Tooheys New or a couple of other Aussie beers, you were pretty much out of luck. They used to provide all-inclusive alcohol packages on this ship, or so we were told, but these days you can only buy an all-inclusive soft drink package. Not quite the same. I’m guessing that all-inclusive alcohol served to Aussies is a bad financial deal for the cruise line. In the evenings there is always a show to go to after dinner. While we were ready to be wowed delighted, the entertainment proved disappointing. There’s an onboard entertainment team which do their best but it’s a bit too “High School Musical” for this writer and his travel lover. They also have a Comedy Club inside the Versaille room. We dropped in for a PG performance and sadly we’ve never seen anyone bomb so badly, and we left before he finished his set. The Carnival Spirits best entertainment is from the wait staff, they are really fantastic and dance and sing every night while having dinner. It’s not uncommon for a dancing train to weave its way around the dining room, filled with both wait staff and fellow passengers. Even the Captain was most entertaining with a wry sense of humour and Eli, the cruise director, was brilliant. He’s a Kiwi and knows how to find the ironic and joke in situations. His ships talks were worth sitting in on. Sea days are always a good way to test a ships’ boredom factor. Luckily the Carnival Spirit have an adults-only area called “Serenity” at the rear of the ship as I previously mentioned. We’d get there just after breakfast to claim one of the round cane cabanas for 2, and while away many hours keeping shady and reading books while facing out to sea and feeling the fresh sea air. All good while the weather was fine. But after our Mare stop was cancelled due to a cyclone we couldn’t go to our haven and had to endure 4 straight days at sea, mostly indoors. We started to consider the possibility of swimming to shore. Any shore. These days proved difficult and consisted of towel folding demonstrations, bingo, trivia, secrets to a flatter stomach, and blackjack, not to mention more trips to the buffet out of sheer boredom – pretty common cruise activities. Read Less
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5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
I enjoyed an earlier cruise to New Caledonia on Carnival Spirit. Unfortunately the second time around was not so good; perhaps because we were in an inside cabin this time. The cabin itself was quite a bit smaller than I expected. There ... Read More
I enjoyed an earlier cruise to New Caledonia on Carnival Spirit. Unfortunately the second time around was not so good; perhaps because we were in an inside cabin this time. The cabin itself was quite a bit smaller than I expected. There was no lounge chair, only a single chair, plus a stool in front of the dressing table/ desk. The single beds in our cabin were only 2’ 6” wide which is too narrow. Also, my bed was lumpy, I think because the mattress protector was ill fitting and kept bunching-up in the middle. Okay, so we only paid for a cheap inside cabin, so we don’t expect the world. The air conditioning was very effective at cooling the cabin, but it was at times a little too cool and very sensitive to movements of the controller. Nevertheless, I would rather be cool than too hot. The bathroom smelt musty/ mouldy as soon as we first entered it. I think because the shower curtains may not be washed frequently enough and the whole bathroom smelt like it could do with a good wipe over with chlorine bleach. The toilet smelt of old urine from the minute we entered the cabin. Also the toilet seat did not appear to me to be very clean with old ingrained stains. I noticed the same smells in the bathroom in the last cruise I did on Carnival Spirit. During that cruise I had to ask the steward if she could find some bleach to clean it with. The food in the buffet is generally good considering the price of the cruise, but they generally served up the same offerings every day. They could easily provide more variety without spending more money. For example, the home fried potatoes have a bad tasting spice on them. They could provide some variety by not using the spices on some days. Also, the baked beans were always the variet with onions. How about buying some cans of beans without the onions. No extra cost. At the breakfast buffet (Good Eats) the food is put out at around 6:30am but guests aren’t allowed to touch it until 7:00, by which time much of it is not so enjoyable, especially the eggs benedict. At the Guy Fieri burger stand, I think they need to change the frying oil more frequently as the potato chips (fries) I had were soft and dark. Instead of the art auctions in the Versailles Lounge, where hardly anybody buys anything, they should show movies during the day more frequently. These would be very well attended judging by the attendance at the one or two movies that they did show. The enrichment activities were generally attempts to sell health-related treatments to passengers. These all seemed to be quite expensive. Most people, including myself, only seemed to attend the art auctions for the free “champagne”, which is just sparkling white wine, and the entertainment. Even the free sparkling white wine was mostly orange juice. OK, we don’t expect real champagne, but at least give the option of either straight sparkling wine or the wine/orange juice mixture. The gym was advertised as opening at 6:00am, but on three occasions this cruise I had to ask a passing staffer to open it up. This was done with barely a grunt. I was also concerned about the grinding and repainting work being done on the Lido deck during the sea days, only metres away from passengers including kids. From what I could see there was little attempt, and probably no easy way, to suppress the dust while they were doing the work. Not a good look. There was quite an extensive list of shore excursions available, but information on these should be provided to passengers online in advance of the cruise so we can plan a little. As it was, many of the good excursions were fully booked when we tried to book them on the second sea day. Royal Caribbean does a much better job at providingn this information to passengers as soon as they have booked. Overall, the experience was about average, but okay for the money we paid. I would probably pay a little (or a lot?) more and cruise with a different cruise line next time. Read Less
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