Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
SeaHunt

Ovation of the Seas Pax Possibly Injured in Volcanic Eruption

Recommended Posts

8 hours ago, h20skibum said:

I wonder what criteria they will use to determine volcanoes they consider active?  I have visited Kilauea, Haleakala, and most recently, Mt. Vesuvius.  All would be considered active. 

 

I must admit, that I only associated Mt. Vesuvius with the destruction of Pompeii almost 2,000 years ago.  It was only after this event, that I researched how many volcanic events it has experienced since then.  It is considered one of the most dangerous volcanoes in the world, because of the number of people living in the area that could be impacted by a major eruption.  A major event would reach Naples in about 5 minutes.

 

This video clip is one I took this summer.

 

 

I have yet to see any excursion, from any of the cruise lines, highlight any significant risks.  Maybe this will prompt us to all look a little deeper into what we do.

 

The survivors of the eruption at White Island will have a long and painful road to recovery.

We received an email yesterday that our shore excursion which included a hike up Mt Vesuvius has been cancelled.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, Poochie71 said:

We received an email yesterday that our shore excursion which included a hike up Mt Vesuvius has been cancelled.

That’s a shame. Vesuvius is one of the most closely monitored volcanoes  in the world, and there’s likely to be some notice if it looks problematic. If it did erupt, the ship would probably go too, along with Naples and the whole area. Pompeii and Herculaneum were tiny by comparison.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Robito said:

On the accountability part of this issue I would like to add my 2 cents. I am currently a passenger on the Ovation of the Seas as we are sitting at anchor outside Picton.

 

I see people talking about signing a waiver and how the 38 or so people knew what they were getting into.

 

Now I get that the 38 or so people who went there signed waivers and knew what they were getting into. People want to talk about how tragic this was for the kids left behind on the ship....did their kids sign a waiver? . . .


Wait - there are children of some of these victims on the ship?  OMG, my heart is breaking for them.   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm curious how the New Zealand government has allowed these tours to operate. 

 

In New Zealand when it comes to private land or a private company operating a service offered to the public can the government not step in when a private operator is doing something that puts people at risk?

 

What other excursions in New Zealand or anywhere for that matter are not safe?  Is there enough oversight of train operators in New Zealand for example.  Train disasters occur around the world and often we learn of unsafe practices, poorly maintained equipment or lazy operators who cause tragic accidents.  How safe is the Taieri Gorge Railway in New Zealand?

 

It probably doesn't make sense for every cruise line to have hired volcanologists to advise them.  What lesson can be learned here?  What should they have done?  Should the cruise industry as a whole hire train inspectors that can advise them on the condition of the various train based excursions offered around the world? 

 

Many Royal ships have PADI Five Star dive centers on board.  I've heard that these crew often participate on dive excursions and when they participate on a dive excursion they can observe and watch for dive boat operators that may not be following best practices.   In this sense they have employees that can directly observe and advise on unsafe operators.

 

When you begin to look at all excursions with a broader view where else can safety be improved?

 

Last year I went on an excursion looking for bears in the Alaskan wilderness.  Our group was protected by one guy with a rifle.  As I look back if a group of bears decided they didn't like our presence that one long gun couldn't have protected all of us.  That was probably a dangerous excursion to take.  

 

While this was a natural disaster what lessons can be learned looking beyond active volcanoes so these unfortunate deaths are not in vain?  Perhaps cruise lines shouldn't offer any excursions.  That probably makes us less safe in the bigger picture because it will be very hard for each of us to determine if a local tour operator is safe or not but it removes a lot of liability from the cruise lines.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, npcl said:

just pointing out that even the hawaiian volcanos have explosive events.

 

Even this last episode had a major ash release that rose several thousand feet on the same day as the 6 plus earthquake. The same quake that damaged the lava tube and resulted in the museum on the rim being closed due to a crack running right through it.

 

the park did not close until after the quake and ash release so people could have gotten killed there. as I mentioned earlier a tour guide was just about to enter the lava tube with his group.

 

while they are different type volcanos both the white island event and the explosive events demonstrated in 1924 and 1790 on Kilauea are due to water inteusion.

 

 

I think you’re just argumentative and someone who has no first hand knowledge of the islands and can only look things up on the internet. So I repeat: There is no reason to cancel any excursions to Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, unless the U.S. National Park Service says so. Have there been people who have come close to being injured? A boat the got hit by a fireball? Yes, because of their own stupidity for going too close and overstepping boundries. That is not on the National Park, or even the Volcano. That is on the idiots who nearly got themselves killed for overstepping boundaries.

 

You are not from Hawai’i. Far from it. In fact I question if you have even been to the islands and the National Parks themselves. Being a native of the 50th State, I can tell you that I *have* been to the Volcanoes National Park, I have been in Thurston Lava Tube, I’ve been to Halema’uma’u, and the Volcano House hotel.

 

I had an idea that Kilaue’a and even Haleakalā (which is not active) would end up being conflated with this unfortunate event in New Zealand, and sure enough there are ignorant people saying that excursions to Hawai’i’s natural wonders should be canceled. The answer is no, they shouldn’t. And events that happened in 1790 and 1924, 134 years apart, have no bearing. Do you think the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. National Park Service are not aware of this history? And mind you, earthquakes in Hawai’i are not uncommon either, and people have been visiting Thurston Lava Tube since at least the late 19th Century. Nobody at the USGS or the NPS are blind here. On the other hand the sheer idiocy of the situation in New Zealand, by the NZ Government, the people who privately own the Volcano (absurd), the tour companies and Royal Caribbean itself is mind boggling. You absolutely cannot compare the two. Not in the slightest.

Edited by K.S.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have cruised Hawaii and did the Volcanoes National Park and loved it.  We would go again.  

 

I have recently read that since this was a "Act of God" so to speak RCI may not be held accountable.  The waivers usually protect RCI from weather and other unforeseen events.  This is so sad, I feel for everyone on the cruise and especially for the people injured.  Their lives have been changed forever.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, twangster said:

Perhaps cruise lines shouldn't offer any excursions.  That probably makes us less safe in the bigger picture because it will be very hard for each of us to determine if a local tour operator is safe or not but it removes a lot of liability from the cruise lines.


I think that would be the “smart” thing for cruise lines to do.   It would remove their liability as once you step off that boat,  you are a free and independent individual capable of making your own choices.  It is not RCI’s job to babysit you in port.  RCI’s only responsibility would be to keep you “reasonably” safe on the ship, maintain safety at the maritime standards, and perform maintenance per regulation, and not dock in any place with an unreasonable amount of danger.

 

However, that would not be the “smart” money decision.  That 30% cut they take for those cruise excursions really pad their bottom line.

 

I suspect RCI and all cruise lines will start eliminating excursions with a notable amount of elevated danger and just let the Pax book independently for anything with a larger than normal amount of inherent risk.  They will lose some profits,  but at the same time limit liability.

Edited by rimmit

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, BSocial said:


Wait - there are children of some of these victims on the ship?  OMG, my heart is breaking for them.   

If (a big if) this is true that is terrible...how can two parents go on an excursion with this level of risk and leave children back on the ship. Maybe we are talking adult children?  It is all horrific and so sad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been reading through the VABs, Volcanic Alert Bulletins published by GeoNet.  https://www.geonet.org.nz/volcano/vab/

 

The last VAB issued before the eruption on Dec. 3 can be found here:

 

https://www.geonet.org.nz/vabs/5gMP3pBjFuQmNOQB89rZT4

 

It does speak of continued increased levels of activity but it also specifically states:

 

  • The level of activity is variable and remains within the range expected for moderate volcanic unrest. While the activity is contained to the far side of the lake, the current level of activity does not pose a direct hazard to visitors.

 

This and the previous VAB contain this notation:

 

  • Overall, the monitored parameters continue to be in the expected range for moderate volcanic unrest and associated hazards exist. The monitoring observations bear some similarities with those seen during the 2011-2016 period when Whakaari/White Island was more active and stronger volcanic activity occurred. Observations and data to date suggest that the volcano may be entering a period where eruptive activity is more likely than normal.

That doesn't sound like a definitive statement that an eruption is imminent.  It "may be" entering a period ...

 

If I was considering taking my family to this island I don't think these VABs would have caused me to reach the conclusion it was not safe.  

 

On the contrary, these two statements in the most recent VAB before the eruption :

 

  • Explosive gas and steam-driven mud jetting continues from the active vent area at the back of the crater lake on Whakaari/White Island. The level of activity at the vent is variable and when in a stronger phase, some material is being deposited about the vent area. This style of activity has been present since late September, although it is occurring more frequently now. No volcanic ash is being produced.
  • The level of activity is variable and remains within the range expected for moderate volcanic unrest. While the activity is contained to the far side of the lake, the current level of activity does not pose a direct hazard to visitors.

Put the two together and this sounds like this could be very interesting and educational.  We would be able to see an active volcano bubbling mud occasionally throwing some debris from the vent while it does not pose a direct hazard to visitors.  This style of activity has been present for several months.  Honestly it sounds safe and like something I would want to do.

 

Edited by twangster

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, twangster said:

Put the two together and this sounds like this could be very interesting and educational.  We would be able to see an active volcano bubbling mud occasionally throwing some debris from the vent while it does not pose a direct hazard to visitors.  This style of activity has been present for several months.  Honestly it sounds safe and like something I would want to do.

 


This is EXACTLY the type of excursion I would do.  If the Ovation had stopped there on the Nov 13th Cruise, and I did not have our 4 year old and 8 year old with us, I woulda been all about it.  I always look for unique and different excursions. (Albeit it’s is hard these days with two kids).   
 

But I can totally understand why people went as I very easily could have been one of them.  Based on the description of the tour and past success rate I would have 100 percent signed up if the Ovation stopped there as the risk seemed low to nonexistent given no one had died there before.   I am all about adventure but there is a point where the risk out weighs the excitement.  I will never climb Mt. Everest. The death rate is just inacceptable from all my research into it.  But I’d do Kilimanjaro or a trek to Everest Base camp.   Some will climb Mount Everest and die trying.  Everyone has a different risk assessment they will tolerate.   The issue is when acts of god occur or when the risk may be higher than the purveyed risk by the operator.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, K.S. said:

If you want to fear Hawai’i’s volcanoes, that’s up to you. I don’t.

 

I think that sums up how people should book excursions. Everyone has different ideas of what is  'adventurous' vs 'crazy'.

 

Like  anything else, people should research things. I remember a thread where the posters were beating up on someone who didn't wear water shoes at a Caribbean island and stepped on a sea urchin. "What, you didn't research the environment you are traveling to?" It's like that. I have been  on a private excursion that, once I got on the bus, I realized that I should probably have thought about things a bit more.

 

I understand Royal not selling any volcano tours just because it is easier in terms of liability. I don't think anyone can predict when any volcano might erupt so better to just rule them all out. Let people book privately. I think consumers would investigate private excursions more, as 'ship excursions' have an aura of implied safety.

Edited by marci22

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When we were on the Big Island in Hawaii, we did the walking tour over the lava fields and went thru a lava tube and ended up by the sea where the lava pours into the ocean.

 

It was awesome.

 

Was I concerned??

 

Yes actually I was, but wanted to do it and I remember signing a simple waiver with the tour company Roberts of Hawaii.

 

They gave us the opportunity to buy one bottle of water at a mom and pops shop before we started the tour and advised us not to carry too much, because it will get heavier the more we walked.

So camera in hand and water.............

 

At the very beginning of the tour It was hot and of course I tried to drink as little water as possible.

Wish I would have bought more.

That tour was the longest 2 hours of my life, due to the Hawaii sun and walking over the old lava rocks.

 

I knew it would be hot, and I went anyway.

 

Would I do it again........................once is enough.  Bucket list for this event done.

 

Safe travels to all.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyone who wants to see boiling lava and steam vents should stay on land and go to Yellowstone. It is rumored to be overdue for an eruption, but the USGS says it is likely 100,000 to 125,000 years away from a super eruption, and if an event occurs in any foreseeable future, it is likely to be a steam blast, not lava. By then, of course, the Earth will probably already be uninhabitable ("WALL-E"), and so maybe space cruises will come by to land pax on excursions to view the eruption wearing forcefield suits or something.

 

Meanwhile, it is safe if one is not an idiot and wanders off the walks and paths. But anything ejecting stuff out of superheated vents might include rocks or other debris--indeed, one recently ejected decades of trash people had tossed in. The mind boggles...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, twangster said:

I've been reading through the VABs, Volcanic Alert Bulletins published by GeoNet.  https://www.geonet.org.nz/volcano/vab/

 

The last VAB issued before the eruption on Dec. 3 can be found here:

 

https://www.geonet.org.nz/vabs/5gMP3pBjFuQmNOQB89rZT4

 

It does speak of continued increased levels of activity but it also specifically states:

 

  • The level of activity is variable and remains within the range expected for moderate volcanic unrest. While the activity is contained to the far side of the lake, the current level of activity does not pose a direct hazard to visitors.

 

This and the previous VAB contain this notation:

 

  • Overall, the monitored parameters continue to be in the expected range for moderate volcanic unrest and associated hazards exist. The monitoring observations bear some similarities with those seen during the 2011-2016 period when Whakaari/White Island was more active and stronger volcanic activity occurred. Observations and data to date suggest that the volcano may be entering a period where eruptive activity is more likely than normal.

That doesn't sound like a definitive statement that an eruption is imminent.  It "may be" entering a period ...

 

If I was considering taking my family to this island I don't think these VABs would have caused me to reach the conclusion it was not safe.  

 

On the contrary, these two statements in the most recent VAB before the eruption :

 

  • Explosive gas and steam-driven mud jetting continues from the active vent area at the back of the crater lake on Whakaari/White Island. The level of activity at the vent is variable and when in a stronger phase, some material is being deposited about the vent area. This style of activity has been present since late September, although it is occurring more frequently now. No volcanic ash is being produced.
  • The level of activity is variable and remains within the range expected for moderate volcanic unrest. While the activity is contained to the far side of the lake, the current level of activity does not pose a direct hazard to visitors.

Put the two together and this sounds like this could be very interesting and educational.  We would be able to see an active volcano bubbling mud occasionally throwing some debris from the vent while it does not pose a direct hazard to visitors.  This style of activity has been present for several months.  Honestly it sounds safe and like something I would want to do.

 

Thanks for the info

I would like to do that as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, marci22 said:

 

I think that sums up how people should book excursions. Everyone has different ideas of what is  'adventurous' vs 'crazy'.

 

Like  anything else, people should research things. I remember a thread where the posters were beating up on someone who didn't wear water shoes at a Caribbean island and stepped on a sea urchin. "What, you didn't research the environment you are traveling to?" It's like that. I have been  on a private excursion that, once I got on the bus, I realized that I should probably have thought about things a bit more.

 

I understand Royal not selling any volcano tours just because it is easier in terms of liability. I don't think anyone can predict when any volcano might erupt so better to just rule them all out. Let people book privately. I think consumers would investigate private excursions more, as 'ship excursions' have an aura of implied safety.

 

But that’s thing. Hawai’i’s Volcanoes National Park *is* safe. They would close the park if it wasn’t. I mean, there’s risk in everything in life. Go drive your car! Go walk outside! See what I mean? On the other hand, this whole White Island business was utter absurdity. The United States NPS would never let visitors walk into an active crater; “Here’s your gas mask”. And I can tell you, you’ve never been able to. Royal Caribbean not offering excursions I think, has more to do with optics at this point.

 

I have no stake in the matter personally, other than that, although I now live 5,000 miles away, Hawai’i is my “home”, I am a native, and I *knew* people would falsely equate the White Island absurdity with the natural wonder of our beautiful National Parks in Hawai’i. People have even mentioned Haleakalā in the same breath which is doubly absurd. My message is: go to Hawai’i, go to these places, enjoy it’s wonder and natural beauty, do not be afraid. Keep in mind when you visit Yellowstone National Park, *that entire park* is actually on top of the caldera of what is known as a “Super Volcano”! The geysers and hot pools etc. are not happening for no reason. Do people advocate closing down or canceling trips to Yellowstone? Think about that.

 

Hawai’i is just not the same thing as the situation that happened in New Zealand! The whole White Island story is just pure craziness!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, K.S. said:

 

But that’s thing. Hawai’i’s Volcanoes National Park *is* safe. They would close the park if it wasn’t. I mean, there’s risk in everything in life. Go drive your car! Go walk outside! See what I mean? On the other hand, this whole White Island business was utter absurdity. The United States NPS would never let visitors walk into an active crater; “Here’s your gas mask”. And I can tell you, you’ve never been able to. Royal Caribbean not offering excursions I think, has more to do with optics at this point.

 

I have no stake in the matter personally, other than that, although I now live 5,000 miles away, Hawai’i is my “home”, I am a native, and I *knew* people would falsely equate the White Island absurdity with the natural wonder of our beautiful National Parks in Hawai’i. People have even mentioned Haleakalā in the same breath which is doubly absurd. My message is: go to Hawai’i, go to these places, enjoy it’s wonder and natural beauty, do not be afraid. Keep in mind when you visit Yellowstone National Park, *that entire park* is actually on top of the caldera of what is known as a “Super Volcano”! The geysers and hot pools etc. are not happening for no reason. Do people advocate closing down or canceling trips to Yellowstone? Think about that.

 

Hawai’i is just not the same thing as the situation that happened in New Zealand! The whole White Island story is just pure craziness!

You have that perception because people have been visiting the national park for years.  Kilaue’a has been erupting for years, yet the national park allows people into the crater. I have hiked in the crater several times.

 

Just as in New Zealand tourists have been traveling to White Mountain for years, even at level 2 for years with no issue. The last fatal eruption of White Mountain I believe was in 1914 when 10 minors were killed.

 

The point is that volcano tourism is safe until it is not.  They can make the change from safe to unsafe with out warning. 

 

The event was tragic, and now people are second guessing the decision to allow tourism.  Based upon history one could have a fatal event on Hawaii, and in Washington (oops did have one there killing 57), Oregon (Hood, the 3 sisters, Newberry Caldera), Wyoming, California (Long valley Caldera, Shasta, Lassen). Some day they there will be one (People came very very close in Hawaii in 2018). The point is not for people to stop doing Volcano tourism, there is risk, but it is a very very low probability event. The odds are far more likely that one would be killed in a traffic accident than visiting a volcano.

 

In this case you had a tragic surprise, that if it occurred an hour later, would have been visually stunning, but not fatal. It is a tragedy for those involved, but is an event that could have occurred in a number of places.  Also keep in mind that White Mountain is relatively isolated.  As such the only risk was to tourists and guides. That makes this event somewhat unique and generating more press.  How many people here even heard of the 2018 Anak Krakatoa eruption in Indonesia that killed 437? or the 2018 eruption of Volcan de Fuego in Guatemala that killed 191?

 

If one thinks that Kilaue’a is a totally safe Volcano you might read  USGS Fact Sheet 2011-3064

https://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2011/3064/fs2011-3064.pdf

 

This  is not equating the the Hawaii volcanos to the White Mountain Volcano.  Each is unique.  They have their own personalities, history and behavior.  As well as their own dangers.  They can be visited safely, but they also are capable of sudden, tragic surprises. Of course human nature is such that when such a low probability event occurs that first reaction is to start second guessing and pointing fingers.

 

White Mountain is not even the Volcano with the most fatalities in New Zealand. Mount Ruapehu eruption (site of some very good skiing) killed 151 in 1953.

 

The Kilaue’a eruption in 1790 is thought to have killed 400+.  You can still find their foot prints frozen in ash.

Edited by npcl

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Lionesss said:

When we were on the Big Island in Hawaii, we did the walking tour over the lava fields and went thru a lava tube and ended up by the sea where the lava pours into the ocean.

 

It was awesome.

 

Was I concerned??

 

Yes actually I was, but wanted to do it and I remember signing a simple waiver with the tour company Roberts of Hawaii.

 

They gave us the opportunity to buy one bottle of water at a mom and pops shop before we started the tour and advised us not to carry too much, because it will get heavier the more we walked.

So camera in hand and water.............

 

At the very beginning of the tour It was hot and of course I tried to drink as little water as possible.

Wish I would have bought more.

That tour was the longest 2 hours of my life, due to the Hawaii sun and walking over the old lava rocks.

 

I knew it would be hot, and I went anyway.

 

Would I do it again........................once is enough.  Bucket list for this event done.

 

Safe travels to all.

 

 

That lava tube that you toured is now closed.  Probably permanently due to a massive rock fall that occurred during a 6+ earthquake during the 2018. A friend of mine, a tour guide out of Hilo, was getting ready to take his tour group into the the lava tube when the earthquake occurred. 10 minutes later and they would have been inside with the rock fall.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We flew in a helicopter directly over the caldron of Kilauea back in '92... you could feel the heat through the glass ... it was thrilling. They stopped doing that after a number of helicopter accidents... In fact, years later we took a helicopter tour of Kauai ... after the trip we took a group photo... a few years later we heard of a helicopter crash and sure enough we saw a photo of the craft and it had the same number on it's tail. A friend told us that he had friends who were waiting for that specific helicopter to return. They were to have been on that tour... but a friend was late... so they pushed off the tour to the next one. 

 

In Alaska many people take bush plane rides to see the glaciers from overhead. Bush pilots have incredibly short life expectancy due to crashes.

 

A few years ago my sister was on a Celebrity cruise... they visited Kilauea the day of the 6.9 earthquake. They were actually exiting the restroom at the national park when the 6.9 earth quake hit. They watched their bus rock back and forth... the park ranger was freaking out... but their bus driver acted like this happened all the time. Anyway the park was closed after that... and the volcano proceeded to fill a local bay adding to the size of the Big Island. Not sure when they reopened the park... not sure if the building was impacted by the volcano's activity.

 

There have been several bus accidents recently where cruise passengers have died while coming or going to an excursion. On our last trip... I took a bus tour on St Lucia... when I returned I learned that one of the other tours buses was hit in a head on by a car on the wrong side of the road... the driver and tour guide ended up in the hospital... the two people who used seat belts were uninjured... but the rest of the cruise passengers were treated on the ship by the medical staff. Now you might think... why not go to local hospital? Well while on the ship we noticed the US Comfort... a US navy hospital ship... off in the distance with patients being ferried back and forth for treatment.... suggesting it was likely best for the passengers minor injuries to be treated on the ship... Funny thing, I recalled seeing the seat belt on my tour... and did not use them... why? not sure... I think I didn't want to look like a dork... well next time... I am wearing them and a clown hat if necessary.

 

Everyone needs to determine the level of risk they are willing to take. Now that I am older... and hopefully a bit wiser... I know that I would not go in a helicopter tour again... unless I knew the pilot and had some idea on how well equipment was maintained. And I am not likely to know that... so I will now remain on the ground.  Oh and I never travel without travel insurance...  and recently started looking more closely at coverage.

 

Alas accidents happen... you can avoid some of them... but not all. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Harry Peterson said:

That’s a shame. Vesuvius is one of the most closely monitored volcanoes  in the world, and there’s likely to be some notice if it looks problematic. If it did erupt, the ship would probably go too, along with Naples and the whole area. Pompeii and Herculaneum were tiny by comparison.

 

No matter how monitored it is, they still can't accurately predict eruptions and one could occur without warning. Very similar to how scientists can't predict earthquakes either. And in some ways identical because tectonic plate movements cause earthquakes and could cause a volcanic eruption too. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, mayleeman said:

Anyone who wants to see boiling lava and steam vents should stay on land and go to Yellowstone. It is rumored to be overdue for an eruption, but the USGS says it is likely 100,000 to 125,000 years away from a super eruption, and if an event occurs in any foreseeable future, it is likely to be a steam blast, not lava. By then, of course, the Earth will probably already be uninhabitable ("WALL-E"), and so maybe space cruises will come by to land pax on excursions to view the eruption wearing forcefield suits or something.

 

Meanwhile, it is safe if one is not an idiot and wanders off the walks and paths. But anything ejecting stuff out of superheated vents might include rocks or other debris--indeed, one recently ejected decades of trash people had tossed in. The mind boggles...

 

New Zealand has their equivalent to Yellowstone (ie a bubbling smoking caldera) at the same port stop.  On our first cruise that stopped at Tauranga, we visited the thermal features near Rotorua.  White Island the Bay or Plenty Rotorua are all part of the same gigantic volcanic feature.

 

They sell a book describing the various ways dumb tourists have died in Yellowstone.  

 

jc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, K.S. said:

 

But that’s thing. Hawai’i’s Volcanoes National Park *is* safe. They would close the park if it wasn’t. I mean, there’s risk in everything in life. Go drive your car! Go walk outside! See what I mean? On the other hand, this whole White Island business was utter absurdity. The United States NPS would never let visitors walk into an active crater; “Here’s your gas mask”. And I can tell you, you’ve never been able to. Royal Caribbean not offering excursions I think, has more to do with optics at this point.

 

I have no stake in the matter personally, other than that, although I now live 5,000 miles away, Hawai’i is my “home”, I am a native, and I *knew* people would falsely equate the White Island absurdity with the natural wonder of our beautiful National Parks in Hawai’i. People have even mentioned Haleakalā in the same breath which is doubly absurd. My message is: go to Hawai’i, go to these places, enjoy it’s wonder and natural beauty, do not be afraid. Keep in mind when you visit Yellowstone National Park, *that entire park* is actually on top of the caldera of what is known as a “Super Volcano”! The geysers and hot pools etc. are not happening for no reason. Do people advocate closing down or canceling trips to Yellowstone? Think about that.

 

Hawai’i is just not the same thing as the situation that happened in New Zealand! The whole White Island story is just pure craziness!

I would agree about Hawaii Volcano Natl Park and Haleakala being safe.  I have family members born on the Big Island.  I have visited them many times and went to Volcano Natl Park & Haleakala many times.  They are very cautious and safe with visitors.  I am very risk adverse and I wouldn't hesitate to go to Volcano National Park. I have also visited New Zealand & went to Rotorua, but I wouldn't do White Island.  Although it sounds cool, I myself am too cautious.  I won't zip line either.  I have heard of people getting killed on that.  Everything just depends on your particular comfort level. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don’t think cruise lines should stop offering excursions.  I do think they should emphasize that they are offering tours as a “convenience” only and that all excursion providers are outside agents.  Hiding it in the the small print is my issue.  I don’t care if RC makes a profit for providing marketing services etc.  Just be clear with the guests...taking advantage of the “typical” oblivious guest might be legal but it’s not really an ethical approach.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, rimmit said:


If it’s any consolation, I have done a lot of traveling.  Taeri Gorge and the Sounds don’t even crack the top 25.   Go see the Norwegian Fjords,  or Glacier Bay in Alaska.  Go see the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, or Zion National Park in the US.   Go see Antarctica, South Georgia Island.  Go see the Amalfi Coast.  Go see Ireland or Iceland.   I can list off many more that are more impressive than the Sounds and Taeri Gorge so try not to feel too bad about it.  Especially considering some lost there lives and will never see ANYTHING again at all.


 

 

 

We have also done a lot of travelling and love going to New Zealand every Easter holidays plus are doing another cruise there this time next year.

 

i totally agree with your comments. That said I’m spending 12 nights in Rotorua over Easter as New Zealand is a great land based holiday and its relaxing. 

 

the port from Dunedin is a bit of a drive the whole area is very pretty but I found the Taeri Gorge train to be good but not worth the worry if you miss it. I got bored on the train.

 

Milford sound is beautiful but entry to the sounds can be cancelled at short notice depending on the seas and weather. You are not guaranteed of seeing it.

 

all of this said I love going to New Zealand on holidays. It’s a beautiful place to visit and the people are wonderful. There is so much to see and do that a cruise tour just doesn’t give you enough time to really enjoy.

 

qantas and Air New Zealand are really pushing the boundaries of long haul flights. In the next couple of years we are going to see changes to the way we fly with will make it easier and more enjoyable to fly to the other side of the world.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...