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Ciaran specializes in arranging large group tours and prior to that was consulting for 8 years in Ireland. He now plays a key role in our groups team and away from work he's a very keen sports fan."If there’s a tour in particular that you have your heart set on (for example dog sledding in Alaska), always ensure that you pre-book to guarantee your spot."
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26 Apr 2013
Grand Pacific World Cruise 2013 Sector
Sun Princess - 25 nights ex Sydney, Australia
Take a break on board the Sun Princess experiencing 25 exciting nights aboard the Grand Pacific World Cruise 2013 Sector to Asia. Your ship embarks from Sydney with an itinerary that includes 10 ports in 6 countries before finishing at Beijing (Tanggu). Your 4 star cruise from Princess Cruises has forward departures, but is unfortunately sold out for this departure.
|Day||Date||Port of call||Arrival||Departure|
|1||Fri 26 Apr 2013||Sydney, Australia||4.00pm|
| Cruise ships berthed at Sydney’s Overseas Passenger Terminal (OPT) access sweeping views of the harbour, Opera House, CBD, Circular Quay ferry terminal, and Sydney Harbour Bridge – all within a few minutes’ walk. The OPT is currently undergoing a major expansion to berth vessels with 5000+ passengers. The new White Bay Cruise Terminal, for mid-sized vessels that can pass under the Bridge, docks two cruise ships. Facilities at both terminals are efficient, though White Bay is 30 minutes’ drive by taxi or shuttle bus to the CBD and Central Station. Long term car parking is not too far away from each terminal. During the crowded summer season cruise ships occasionally tender passengers from Athol Buoy and Point Piper Buoy. QM2 has docked at Garden Island Naval Base.
Sydney, the capital of New South Wales, is Australia's first and largest city. Astride the magnificent Sydney Harbour, it has come a long way from its convict beginnings in 1788, but still exudes a rough and colonial energy. Soak up Sydney’s gorgeous harbour on a wide range of vessels including yachts, tall ships, catamarans, or even kayaks. If adventurous try a jet boat ride, or perhaps decide that there's no better way to see the sights than on a Sydney Explorer Hop-on Hop-off Harbour Cruise. Take surfing lessons at Manly and Bondi Beaches. On the harbour’s north shore are Taronga Zoo and the Sydney Aquarium, and on a tiny island in the middle of the harbour tour historic Fort Denison.
Adjacent to the OPT investigate The Rocks precinct with its images of a colourful convict past. Day options include a climb to the top of the ‘Coathanger’, tour of the Opera House, dining at the Skywalk of Sydney Tower, strolling in Hyde Park, dining at an ethnic restaurant, Duty-Free shopping, and striking up a conversation with friendly locals. One-day coach tours visit the highlights of Sydney, Hunter Valley wine region, and the spectacular Blue Mountains. Take a scenic flight over the Harbour and Pacific surfing coastline. For lovers of sport, whale-watching, sky diving, and hot air ballooning are also on offer.
|2||Sat 27 Apr 2013||At Sea|
|3||Sun 28 Apr 2013||At Sea|
|4||Mon 29 Apr 2013||At Sea|
|5||Tue 30 Apr 2013||At Sea|
|6||Wed 1 May 2013||At Sea|
|7||Thu 2 May 2013||Darwin, Australia||8.00am||5.00pm|
| The new Darwin cruise ship terminal, adjacent to Stokes Hill wharf waterfront area and convention centre, is only one kilometre from Darwin’s CBD. Modern amenities, hotels and parking are right there, alongside a mini-market with beautiful local productions – Aboriginal art and crafts, diamonds and opals, and eateries, all very distinctive of the Top End. Darwin is a home port for the small luxury vessels Coral Princess, Oceanic Discoverer, and Orion that explore the Kimberley coast to Broome. A score of cruise ship lines include Darwin in their itineraries for Australia, Indonesia, South-East Asia and World Cruises. The harbour, seven times the area of Sydney Harbour, and bounded by mangrove forest, offers great fishing, sunken ships and sea life.
Darwin is the capital city of the Northern Territory, Australia. Its tropical climate has two seasons, Wet and Dry. The hottest month is November, just before the onset of the monsoon season, locally known as 'Mango Madness' season. Originally a pioneer outpost, Darwin has been rebuilt twice. Air raids during World War II landed more bombs than on Pearl Harbour. Then came the devastation of Cyclone Tracy in 1974 that flattened 70% of the city. Visits to the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, the East Point Military Museum, the Aviation Heritage Centre, and the Myilly Point Historical Precinct, give one a truly fascinating understanding and 'feel' for the local history.
The lazy beaches, modern wave pool, buzzing markets, the orchids and traditional Aboriginal plants in the George Brown Darwin Botanic Gardens, and numerous annual festivals make Darwin a cultural melting pot of exotic smells and flavours. Stroll around this vibrant, cosmopolitan, yet casual city, passing the occasional busker intoning the droning sound of a didgeridoo. Quite special. Truly a young city rich in history and cultural heritage.
|8||Fri 3 May 2013||At Sea|
|9||Sat 4 May 2013||At Sea|
|10||Sun 5 May 2013||At Sea|
|11||Mon 6 May 2013||At Sea|
|12||Tue 7 May 2013||Singapore, Singapore||8.00am||6.00pm|
| Singapore is an island nation located at the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula. It lies 137 km N of the Equator, just south of the Malaysian state of Johor. One of the few remaining city-states in the world, Singapore is a thriving cosmopolitan city that is brimming with diversity and has a multiplicity of culture, language, arts and architecture and a world famous variety of cuisine. You'll find historic sites like the Thian Hock Keng temple, superlative shopping, including gargantuan malls, and numerous beaches. You will certainly not be surprised to know that over ten million tourists visit Singapore each year.
Before the shops open at 11 am visit the famed Botanic Gardens with its virgin rainforest and its magnificent orchids, and have a delightful breakfast at the food court at Tanglin Gate. Then you will probably gravitate to the famed retail stretch of Orchard Road. Continue on to see the 'real Singapore'. Visit the amazing artwork at the Ritz Carlton, tour the unheralded Chinatown Heritage Centre, go to Haji Lane for some unique shopping, take a ride on the 165 m high Flyer, and perhaps travel to Dempsey Hill and enjoy the historical setting as well as eat at the White Rabbit.
There are a series of delightful tours that include the famous Raffles Hotel, harbour cruises, visiting the famous Sentosa Island by the scenic cable car and which offers some truly fantastic experiences for children and adults alike. Or, take a hop-on-hop-off bus tour with its inviting buses and interesting commentary, and hence get 'a feel' for the island. Singapore also happens to be one of the cleanest and safest cities of its size in the world. Just make sure you heed all the local laws, as penalties here are renowned for being very severe.
|13||Wed 8 May 2013||At Sea|
|14||Thu 9 May 2013||Koh Samui, Thailand||8.00am||5.00pm|
| Koh Samui is an island off the E coast of the Kra Isthmus in Thailand, about 35 km NE of Surat Thani town. It is Thailand's third largest island, the central part of which is an uninhabitable mountainous jungle. The various lowland areas are connected by a single road that circumnavigates the island. Explore pristine beaches, villages, and relaxing beach-side restaurants, either by hiring a bicycle or hiring a local Samui driver/guide to show you around. The island is truly an oasis of natural beauty, with its white sandy beaches, dazzling coral, luscious lagoons, picturesque waterfalls, swaying coconut trees and crystal clear water.
The Big Buddha, located on the north of the island, is in all the guide books of Samui; but there are several other temples and chedis worth seeking out. Most of the freely distributed maps indicate where the best lookouts are and which waterfalls are notable. Then there are the famous, erotically shaped Hin Ta and Hin Ya rocks at the southern end of Lamai. It is also possible to visit some of the surrounding islands, while a day trip to the gorgeous Ang Thong National Park, which is the least spoilt of all, and accessible with a guide, may be your choice.
|15||Fri 10 May 2013||Bangkok (Laem Chabang), Thailand||7.00am||7.00pm|
| Bangkok, the capital, largest urban area and primary city of Thailand, is about a two-hour trip from Laem Chabang Port. The city is situated at the mouth of the Chao Phraya River. It is a place where the past, present, and future live harmoniously together, as reflected by the luxury hotels and gleaming skyscrapers that grace the skyline alongside dazzling, historical temples. The city's wealth of cultural landmarks and attractions in addition to its notorious entertainment venues has made it synonymous with exoticism. There are some wonderful boat tours on offer that provide a peaceful, relaxing way of seeing some fantastic sights.
Places well worth visiting include the country's most visited historical venues such as the Grand Palace, Wat Pho, and Wat Arun, as well as the Vimanmek Palace Complex, and a few of its thousands of temples. The National Museum and the National Gallery Museum have wonderful displays of traditional and contemporary works. For something different, visit the Snake and Crocodile Farms, or even the largest outdoor museum in the world, Ancient City, with its replicas of famous buildings. Alternatively, get lost in ancient Siamese history with a river cruise to the famous ruins of Ayuthaya, the Kingdom's former capital.
Be aware that foreign residents and tourists alike complain of widespread scams and blatant price gouging, but by being circumspect, you will thoroughly enjoy this amazing city that draws in eleven million international visitors annually. You are sure to find exactly what you are looking for among dazzling temples, eclectic markets, gleaming palaces, ritzy shopping malls, a famous nightlife and the many things in between. It is one of the most cosmopolitan, contrasting, and above all compelling of Asian cities. Make sure to arrive in Bangkok with a zest to explore, and to make the most of every minute in this magical metropolis.
|16||Sat 11 May 2013||At Sea|
|17||Sun 12 May 2013||Phu My, Vietnam||7.00am||6.00pm|
| The port of Phu My in the Mekong delta is one of several gateways to Ho Chi Minh City and the seaside resort of Vung Tau. Explore the National History Museum and Reunification Hall. Browse the shops on Dong Khoi Street and immerse yourself in the myriad of colors, aromas and sights that make up this energetic and enterprising city.
Over a quarter of a century has passed since the Vietnam War ended in 1975 with the fall of Saigon. Today, the name of this bustling metropolis on the Mekong River is Ho Chi Minh City. Yet, the essence of the city, a major trading center since the 18th century, remains unchanged. The air is filled with the cries of street hawkers and honking horns. Swarms of motorbikes buzz down the crowded streets balancing every sort of cargo imaginable—from clinging families to coops of live chickens. And everywhere, friendly faces and warm greetings meet you.
|18||Mon 13 May 2013||Nha Trang, Vietnam||8.00am||5.00pm|
| Nha Trang is a coastal city and capital of Khánh Hòa province, Vietnam. It is possibly best known for its bay, one of the most beautiful in the world, and the excellent scuba diving. It is a popular destination for locals, international tourists and large numbers of backpackers. The setting is stunning, with towering mountains looming up behind the city and the sweeping beach stretching into the distance, the turquoise waters dotted with little islands. The beachfront has been given a huge makeover in recent years, with parks and sculpture-gardens spread along the shorefront. The city has the alluring combination of being pleasant on the eye, inexpensive and culturally interesting.
If you are a keen photographer then do visit the internationally renowned Long Thanh Photo Studio with a permanent exhibition gallery open to the public. The Alexandre Yersin Museum, which is known for its displays of scientific history, and the National Oceanographic Museum are also of interest to many. There are some great day tours as well, such as visiting interesting religious sites including Po Ngar Cham Towers and the Long Son Pagoda, or perhaps soaking in mineral mud at the Thap Bo Hot Spring Centre. Then there are the cooking classes, which start with buying products at the markets, and finish with a terrific meal.
It is not only the blissful beaches and glorious coastline that define Nha Trang. It also offers some wonderful dining with meals based on the bounty of the sea, and an array of international flavours. Snorkelling, kayaking, mountain biking and even motorbiking, all offer varied landscapes of the province. Alternatively, located 60km from the city center, with the height of 1578m, Hon Ba Peak, with its pure air and cool temperature, allows for walks to observe some of the 60 endangered species living in the mountain, as well as some delightful flora.
|19||Tue 14 May 2013||At Sea|
|20||Wed 15 May 2013||Hong Kong, Hong Kong||8.00am||11.00pm|
| Hong Kong, situated on China's south coast and enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and the South China Sea, is a kaleidoscope of life, a sophisticated fusion of East and West, a city of diversity where new and old meet at every turn. Hong Kong offers a host of memorable tourist attractions within its compact area. Victoria Harbour and the Giant Buddha are among the most awe-inspiring. Then take the famous Escalator and the Tram to the Peak, the tallest point on the island, with some of the most expensive homes to be found anywhere. When there, take a short walk to escape the crowds and be rewarded with some excellent harbour views.
Take a half day tour of the island for an overall picture, and be amazed, not only by the diverse contrasts, but also the close proximity of astonishing cityscapes and soaring mountains, heritage sites, and extensive countryside. All this truly opens a window into what will be, while embracing what has passed. Well-known attractions include: Ocean Park; Buddhist Monasteries; Kowloon; the New Territories; Long Island; or - for children - Hong Kong Disneyland Theme Park. Then visit the Heritage Museum, which brings Hong Kong’s culture to life. You could even choose to make a simulated flight landing in Kai Tak in Hong Kong.
Although it is not the largest part of the territory, Hong Kong Island is the place that many tourists regard as the main focus. To get the best views of Hong Kong, leave the island and head for the opposite Kowloon waterfront. The great majority of Hong Kong Island's urban development is densely packed on reclaimed land along the northern shore. This is the place that the British colonisers took as their own, so if you are looking for evidence of the territory's colonial past, this is a good place to start. It is the island that gives the territory Hong Kong its name.
|21||Thu 16 May 2013||At Sea|
|22||Fri 17 May 2013||At Sea|
|23||Sat 18 May 2013||Shanghai, China||7.00am||6.00pm|
| Shanghai, at the mouth of the Yangtze River on the mid-coast of mainland China, is the most populous city in the People's Republic. It is the largest centre of commerce and finance on mainland China, and is the 'show-piece' of the world's fastest growing major economy. It is a major cruise port rivalling Hong Kong and Singapore. By late 2014 72-hour visa-free stays for tourists are expected. Go to the Bund to watch ships on the river and marvel at the huge variety of architectural styles on display, or watch the crowds pass by in People’s Square. Shoppers should make a beeline for the Fabric Market, where you can have a suit or dress tailor-made for you at bargain prices.
Nanjing Road is Shanghai's world-famous shopping paradise, but there are great shopping districts throughout the city, and taxi fares are very reasonable. Enjoy visiting the many beautiful museums and theatres, including the Shanghai Art Museum, the Natural History Museum, and then perhaps take a ride on the world's first magnetic levitation train. As there were so many concessions to Western powers during the turn of the 20th century, the city has everything from classic Parisian style, to Tudor style buildings that give an English flair, and 1930s buildings reminiscent of New York or Chicago. At night, enjoy the spectacular neon lights.
The city is a tourist destination renowned for its historical landmarks such as the Bund and the City God Temple, and its ever-expanding Pudong skyline including the 468m Oriental Pearl Tower. Shanghai is the hotspot of modern China, a cosmopolitan city buzzing with the concept of 'lifestyle revolution', showcased in the architectural temples of art, fine dining and contemporary urban living. Enjoy your visit to this scintillating city, swirling with rapid cultural change. There are also beautiful parks and temples to visit. Western customs and Chinese traditions intertwined and formed Shanghai's culture, making a visitor's stay truly memorable.
|24||Sun 19 May 2013||At Sea|
|25||Mon 20 May 2013||At Sea|
|26||Tue 21 May 2013||Beijing (Tanggu), China||4.00am|
| Beijing, in Tanggu Province, northern China, is the capital of the People's Republic of China and the nation's political, economic, cultural and educational centre. It is also China's most important centre for international trade and communications. Each year sees about 4.4 million international visitors join with 140 million Chinese tourists to visit this popular tourist destination. Renowned tourist attractions include the: Great Wall of China, the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace, the Temple of Heaven, the Ming Tombs, the National Stadium, and not least Tiananmen Square. As the cultural centre of China, it is rich in historical sites and important government and cultural institutions.
Don't neglect to take a rickshaw ride or a tour to the Beijing Hutongs, a wonderful way to reflect on the local people’s lives. Indeed there are around twenty practical day tours worth including, and these include bicycling and walking tours. Places of interest are: Fragrant Hill Park, Niujie Mosque, 798 Factory Art District, Beijing World Park, Lugou Bridge, Songshan Nature Reserve, Yangi Lake Amusement Park, and the wonderful spectacle of the Yinhu Cave. Enjoy shopping for a bargain, perhaps view an acrobatic performance, and thoroughly enjoy the delicious food, especially a Peking Duck dinner.
Street food in Beijing is located in Gui Street and showcases many excellent cuisines. Stretching over 1km, 90% of the commercial shops in the street house more than 150 eateries. You can definitely find most of the larger restaurants here. Shoppers should be aware that at nearly all markets in Beijing, bartering is essential. When browsing through large, ‘touristy’ shopping areas, do not put it beneath your dignity to start bargaining at 15% of the vendor's initial asking price. In fact, final prices can often be as low as 15%-20% of the initial asking price.
Until April 2015 Sun Princess is based in Sydney. From there visit New Zealand or the Pacific islands. A most popular round-trip Cherry Blossom Cruise of 42 nights departs Sydney late April 2015. During the southern winter cruises depart from Brisbane and Sydney. Itineraries of 10 to 37 nights visit a large range of Pacific islands, PNG and the Great Barrier Reef. Late in 2015 the ship repositions to Fremantle. Some exciting port-intensive tours head for SE Asia, and in January 2016 plan ahead for a circle of the Indian Ocean. Princess Cruises organises on-shore tours that can be booked before sailing or during the cruise. For some voyages pre- and post-cruises tours are available to extend your stay in major ports.
There are six main categories of staterooms - Suites with balcony, Mini-Suites with balcony, Balcony, Oceanview Deluxe, Oceanview, and Interior – and 28 grades, which give a broad choice according to guests’ needs of space and price. All cabins have pleasing décor and reasonable storage space, satellite TV, refrigerator, and 24-hour room service. Fresh fruit (by request), evening bed turn-down, bathroom lotions, and bathrobes (by request) come with every stateroom. Standard cabins are well-designed and functional. Some cabins accommodate a third and even a fourth person. Generally twin beds can be made up into a queen-size bed. Bedding is top quality. There are no interconnecting or single cabins. There are many wheelchair-accessible cabins, and guests with disabilities are well catered for. An in-cabin dining menu is available 24-hours.
Food and Dining
There are two main dining rooms (no Anytime Dining), and dinner is served in two set sittings in each dining room with the same waitstaff and assigned tables and tablemates. Dress code is smart casual, and on cruises longer than three days dress for a formal night for every week of sailing. Breakfast and lunch are provided in an open seating arrangement. (Of course a continental breakfast can be delivered to your stateroom, and there is a complimentary stateroom menu.) One alternative eating venue is Stirling Steakhouse (extra charge, reservations) for really good steak and barbecued chicken. Another is the new Kai Sushi (extra charge) with food freshly prepared by Japanese chefs. New to the atrium is the very popular International Café. Chocolate Journeys is a recent fleet innovation. Passengers booked in cabins with balconies can order several special, romantic meals to be served restaurant-style on the verandah.
In the evening having two show lounges (both theatre and cabaret style) is a great way to give passengers more entertainment choices. During her 2010 refurbishment additions included a Movies Under the Stars screen in the main pool area for new movie releases, sporting events and concert videos. Adults have their own private sunbathing area, the Sanctuary, at the front of the ship. Add seven bars and lounges, nightclub and dance floors, and the casino, to the list of evening options. Alternatively, just stroll around and shop duty-free, or for a quiet time retire to the Library/Card Room or Internet Café. Weddings are officiated by the Captain.
What's onboard? ▼
- Defence Force (active and ex-serving) onboard credit program (ADF & NZDF)
- AUD in/out Australia
- REST & RELAXATION
- Piazza-style Atrium
- Shops duty free
- Main dining rooms (2)
- Traditional Dining
- Anytime Dining outside Australia
- 24-h Room Service, Menu complimentary
- Special diet requests (order ahead)
- Formal dining (1/week)
- Ultimate Balcony Dining (pay)
- Stirling Steakhouse (pay)
- Kai Sushi (Japanese, pay)
- Chocolate Journeys (new)
- The Piazza: Café
- Horizon Court buffet top deck
- Internet café
- Patisserie, Wine bar
- Soda, coffee packages
- Afternoon tea service
- Show lounges (2)
- Lounges, bars, nightclub, disco, dance floors
- Movies Under the Stars
- Onboard games, parties, tours
- ScholarShip@Sea enrichment courses
- Library, writing room
- Art, photo, video gallery
- Celebration packages
- Weddings (enquire)
- Pools (3)
- Whirlpools Spas (5)
- The Sanctuary adult oasis (pay)
- Fitness Centre, jogging track
- Lotus Spa & Fitness
- Sports court & table games
- UNDER 18
- Princess Pelicans (3-7 y centre)
- Shockwaves (8-12 y centre)
- Remix (13-17 y centre)
- Group kidsitting (3-12 y, pay)
- Children with special needs
- Medical centre (pay private rate, no Medicare)
- No tipping, bar charges ex Australia
- ATM on board (costly)
- Internet, Wi-Fi (pay)
- Mobile phone at sea (pay provider)
- Laundromats self-serve
- 220, 110 V cabin power
- Wheelchair cabins, service animals
- No wheelchair access to The Sanctuary
- Daily newsletter
What's included? ▼
- Accommodation as booked
- Australia: Gratuities for Sun and Dawn Princess departures, and Sea Princess departing and returning to Australia.
- All main meals on-board
- Coffee, tea & milk 24 hrs
- Oplen/anytime dining (not in Australia)
- Traditional/set time & multi-venue dining
- Cocktail or champagne reception
- In-cabin dining at no charge
- Complimentary mini-bar setup (Suites)
- Use of ship facilities - indoor & outdoor
- Entertainment - live music and/or shows, movies
- Activities - organised & individual
- Specialty lectures, workshops, classes & programs
- Bridge director on select cruises
- Kids clubs & teen programs (3-17 yrs most ships)
- Cruise Director & all English speaking staff
- Onboard newsletter
- Port maps and/or guide books
- Destination seminars and/or lectures
- Ship-shore-ship transfers
What's excluded? ▼
- Airfares, accommodation & transfers not specified
- Shore & land excursions and meals not specified
- Alternate specialty dining venues
- Room service menu items (unless specified)
- Casino gaming, bar expenses
- Passport & visa fees
- Insurances of all kinds
- Increases in third party charges or taxes
- Outside Australia: Service charge USD 11.50 (suites USD 12) pp/night all ages. Adjust or remove on board.
- Customary land tour gratuities are welcome
- Outside Australia Service charge: bar and wine 15%
- Items & services of a personal nature
- Medical services, vaccination costs
- Laundry and/or valet charges
- Laundry services (Complimentary for Suites & Elite Capltain's Circle
- Wi-Fi, Internet, satellite/mobile phone & fax charges
- Childcare night services (3-12 yrs, 10pm-1am)
"The trip was great. We appreciate all your arrangements which were excellent. Our cabin allocation was terrific, with an adjoining cabin for our kids, and we enjoyed the cake that you kindly requested for our daughter on her birthday."
Jenny S from Sydney
"I would like to let you know how incredibly helpful, resourceful, efficient, reliable and cheerful Natalya has been. Nothing has been too much trouble and she follows through with every single thing she says she is going to do. It is unusual, and incredibly refreshing."
Julie from SA
"Terri remembered every member of our party from last year's Diamond Princess. She goes out of her way to say hello & is always ready with helpful advice."
Margaret from NSW