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twangster

Live - Standing Ovation from the Land Down Under - New Zealand, 11 Nights Feb. 2, 2020

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Gorgeous pictures as always. Looking forward to following you on this great itinerary!

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We had a rainy sail away and evening as we pulled away from the Australian coast.

 

Night one ended early for me on account of being up early to catch the ship's arrival into Sydney.  #boring

 

We change times tonight, one hour forward.  We'll do the same tomorrow night so we'll be on New Zealand time when we arrive.  

 

Sunday night spoiler alert - Chiefs win the Super Bowl.    I'll have watch the replay in the morning, I'm going to bed.

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14 hours ago, Oceansaway17 said:

 

Next yr USA has to so this for Europe starting July.

 I found 4 different sites all saying different things like Eta is good for 2 yrs vs 1 year.

 

 

Is this specific to cruises or all Europe travel?  This is the first I'm seeing regarding this, if you have a handy website can you provide it? If it's not handy, no worries. I can search.  Thanks.

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19 minutes ago, Priszm said:

 

Is this specific to cruises or all Europe travel?  This is the first I'm seeing regarding this, if you have a handy website can you provide it? If it's not handy, no worries. I can search.  Thanks.

 

The Uk is not included.

I started to hear this about 8 months ago and recently saw a site that says it starts in July now of 2021. Just use words USA 2021 travel to Europe.

 

Oh and the 2 yr ETA is for New Zealand not Australia.  I have learned researching on internet to be exhausting.

 

This is why we all appreciate folks like Twangster who share first hand info to us.

 

I thought the Sydney bridge only had the high climbers section. Now I know there is a pedestrian section underneath. Yeah.

 

And who knew the Aussies like pancakes and a restaurant near the dock. YUM 

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30 minutes ago, Oceansaway17 said:

The Uk is not included.

I started to hear this about 8 months ago and recently saw a site that says it starts in July now of 2021. Just use words USA 2021 travel to Europe.

I'm planning a trip to Northern Ireland next year, which is the UK. However I may be flying into Dublin, which is not the UK. So I'll definitely have to look into this further.  Thank you.

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Day 2 - Sea Day

 

The rain and dreary conditions continue.  

 

ov_day2-1.jpg

 

My neighbors down the hall have mastered communication on board without using electronic devices.

 

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Super Bowl replay this morning at 11am.  It is being played on channel 21 on board as well as at the pub and poolside.  

 

I used the time to go through and post pictures leading up to sail away.  

 

Typical sea day experiences.  Ovation is good for days like this with large areas like the indoor family pool and Two70° to disperse the crowds.

 

Something new (to me at least):

 

ov_day2-3.jpg

 

Our progress:

 

ov_day2map-1.jpg

 

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Day 3 - Sea Day

 

Up early before sunrise hoping for a beautiful sunrise at sea.  Maybe tomorrow.

 

ov_day3-1.jpg

 

It's now after the official sunrise time so the sun did rise.  Somewhere.

 

ov_day3-2.jpg

 

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20 minutes ago, twangster said:

Something new (to me at least):

What genre did they play?

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While in the solarium I was surprised to see it empty at 8:15am on a sea day.  I think the time change last night escaped some people.  Regardless, I took advantage of the opportunity to grab some pictures. 

 

The Quantum class solarium is the nicest in the fleet and with the indoor family pool area it truly can be adult only.  Very similar to Anthem but different in subtle ways.

 

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Twangster

everyone loves a secret

,my secret for the quantum class is a door on deck 6 into 270 or the library.

Its great for escaping the crowds at the end of a show.

 Check it out ,nobody knows about it.The concierge showed me.

 

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21 minutes ago, Chiliburn said:

Twangster

everyone loves a secret

,my secret for the quantum class is a door on deck 6 into 270 or the library.

Its great for escaping the crowds at the end of a show.

 Check it out ,nobody knows about it.The concierge showed me.

 

 

What door are you talking about?  It doesn't exit.  (Shhhh....)

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Yes it does.

 I t doesn’t look like a door but it is for public.

you can walk from the theatre to 270 with out see hardly any one .

The concierge took us from one show to the other in no time flat.


No one is listening.

Edited by Chiliburn

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1 hour ago, Chiliburn said:

I t doesn’t look like a door but it is for public.

For those who are not weak -be prepared for a real shove to open it.

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Now that we've reached the port intensive section of this cruise I may slow down posting a bit since I'm focusing on the cruise.  Back soon.

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2 minutes ago, twangster said:

Now that we've reached the port intensive section of this cruise I may slow down posting a bit since I'm focusing on the cruise.  Back soon.

 

Of course, enjoy YOUR cruise! And thank you for taking the time to do this review for us...

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On 2/5/2020 at 6:18 AM, Biker19 said:

What genre did they play?

 

Pretty much what is playing on the itinerary map channel.  Hits from a few years ago.

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@twangster what’s the general feeling onboard? I’m boarding when you disembark and lots of people in our group on face book are in panic mode about the corona virus. I’m hoping it all calms down once we’re onboard. Does it feel like any other cruise to you or is there a noticeable tension etc? 

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@twangster I just saw a post about flooding in New Zealand and power outages, and they named Milford Sound. Have there been any weather related announcements?

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@twangster   Thank you so much for the review and gorgeous photos. We are sailing on her in May. Do you know if the Kummelweck sandwich is available at Two70? Also, would you mind taking photos of the Two70 drink menu? The most recent one I can find online is for another ship in 2016. 

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12 hours ago, Biker19 said:

For those who are not weak -be prepared for a real shove to open it.

 

Yup very heavy door as I almost lost a finger.

 

Another secret sorta, a fast exit from Two 70 is on port side lower level. Take the path of promenade below lifeboats to fast pace to front of the ship.

 

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3 hours ago, M-H-B said:

@twangster what’s the general feeling onboard? I’m boarding when you disembark and lots of people in our group on face book are in panic mode about the corona virus. I’m hoping it all calms down once we’re onboard. Does it feel like any other cruise to you or is there a noticeable tension etc? 

 

No tension that I’ve noticed.  China is 7,500 km away.  I’ve not really thought about it nor has anyone brought it up.  

 

 

1 hour ago, iceh20 said:

@twangster I just saw a post about flooding in New Zealand and power outages, and they named Milford Sound. Have there been any weather related announcements?

 

Driver on a private tour mentioned it briefly.   No rain in Tauranga but they could use some.  

 

34 minutes ago, nklpikl said:

@twangster   Thank you so much for the review and gorgeous photos. We are sailing on her in May. Do you know if the Kummelweck sandwich is available at Two70? Also, would you mind taking photos of the Two70 drink menu? The most recent one I can find online is for another ship in 2016. 


Yes Kümmelweck a plenty.  Well let’s see if I must have a drink in two70 I’ll guess I’ll take one for the team.   Later though, on tour right now.  

Edited by twangster

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Day 3 - continued

 

Conditions cleared up throughout the day and finally we were sailing under much nicer conditions as we crossed the top of the Tasman Sea.

 

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Day 4 - Bay of Islands

 

Our first glimpse of New Zealand occurred just before the sun broke as we neared our first stop on this cruise.

 

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Later today this is an area my excursion would be exploring.

 

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First some breakfast...

 

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This is our only tender port and they started giving out tender tickets just before the first tenders started.  The expectation for tenders is that you are ready to go when you collect your tickets.  Tickets were handed out near Vintages then guests were asked to wait until the ticket number were called. 

 

New Zealand is particularly strict about bringing food or beverages to shore.  Only commercially bottled water is allowed and there was a sniffer dog on the shore to inspect us.

 

Since I had booked a Royal excursion I didn't need a tender ticket, instead tours met in the Royal Theater and we were escorted down to a tender.

 

Quantum class of which Ovation is a member carry eight lifeboats that are designed to also function as tenders.  They are very comfortable and the Ovation crew has this down to a science as the largest cruise ship tender in operation. 

 

Two tenders before our group are just about to make it to shore.

 

ov_day4tender-1.jpg

 

The ride is about 10-12 minutes and we had a full size dolphin playing in the waves of our wake.  I didn't manage to get a picture of the dolphin but it was quite something to see up close just a few feet away.

 

ov_day4tender-2.jpg

 

Upon arrival to the dock a group of dignitaries greeted us.  Actually they weren't there for us but in honor of Waitangi Day festivities.  This national holiday is actually tomorrow but like any independence day like celebration events occurs over several days. 

 

This day marks the anniversary of the signing of the Waitangi treaty that is a founding document for New Zealand.

 

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My excursion boarded another boat for a Bay of Islands lunch cruise.

 

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Edited by twangster

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