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OzKiwiJJ

Let's go on a virtual NZ and Australia cruise

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Welcome to the beautiful Ocean Pearl, a new and magical cruise ship. Although our ship isn’t a big ship, she has some tardis-like qualities. She can change her size and layout to suit everyone on it, and we’ll discuss various aspects of the ship on our sea days.

 

We’re heading off on a wonderful voyage to NZ then right around Australia. The journey will take 40 itinerary (real-time) days, although ship time will be longer. The weather will, of course, be perfect but NZ can sometimes be a bit cool so pack accordingly. The seas will probably be calm although I can’t guarantee that.

 

I’m not going to give you the itinerary in advance although you might be able to guess at some, or most, of the ports. Perhaps I’ll have a few surprises for you though.

 

Rules.

 

1.       Each day, usually last thing at night, I will post the itinerary for the next day. It may be a port where we can discuss the best excursions to do and any other tips about that port, or a sea day where there will be defined topics to discuss. Multiple seas days will be compressed into one itinerary day, and port stops can be over more than one day if people want to do several excursions.

 

2.       Please only post your experiences, opinions or recommendations about the port or topic of the day. If you miss a port, never mind, just keep current otherwise it will get confusing. Photos will be appreciated but not too many at one time.

 

3.       You may ask questions about other people’s posts but please respect their opinions even if they differ from yours. If you quote a post that has photos please remove photos from the quote so that we don’t see the same photos over and over and over.

 

4.       NO politics, cruise line bashing or other negative posts. This is a friendly ship. We all want to enjoy this virtual cruise, enjoying seeing new ports or old favourite ports through other eyes, and having fun onboard on sea days.

 

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Itinerary 1 – Embarkation – Sydney

 

We’re docked at the Overseas Passenger Terminal. Boarding will commence at 11am so that those who enjoy having lunch onboard can do so. Others may prefer to embark later. The safety briefing will be at 4pm and we set sail at 4:30pm.

 

I’m lucky, I live 10-15 minutes from the OPT, but I know some of you will be arriving from out of town, interstate or overseas, and may choose to stay a few days in Sydney before embarking. Tell us about what you like to do when you visit Sydney and where you like to stay.

 

 

2018-11-18 11.55.18.jpg

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One of our favourite things to do, when we want a relaxing day out but don't want to drive anywhere, is to head into the city by bus and go down to Circular Quay. We catch a ferry to Manly, enjoying the harbour views along the way. We wander through Manly to the ocean side, usually stopping for coffee along the way and sometimes browsing the shops. We often have lunch at one of the cafes across the road from the beach, then maybe walk around to Shelly Beach. The walkway is at the right hand end of the beach (facing out to sea). Look out for the little metal sculptures in the rocks at the side of the walkway. There are plenty of seats along the way and sometimes we stop for a while and read while enjoying the sea air and the sound of the ocean. At the end of the day we get the ferry back to the city and head home.

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We live in the Hawkesbury and ovoid the city like corona virus.
 

On Cruise day we catch the train from Richmond and it’s a hour by the time we get to circular quay but along the way we see quite a few people with bags catching the train.

We look for their luggage tags and if it’s our ship we strike up a conversation.

At central we have to change trains but all we have to do is walk across the platform and get on the city circle.

With our new friends we step out of the train to see our ship at circular quay.

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3 hours ago, Chiliburn said:

We live in the Hawkesbury and ovoid the city like corona virus.
 

You never get tempted to play "Sydney tourist" for a day like we do? 

 

Another "day trip" we used to do was start in Kirribilli/Milsons Point, walk across the harbour bridge, across the Cahill Expressway, through the Botanic Gardens, and down to Woolloomooloo via the walkway near the Art Gallery. Have lunch in Woolloomooloo, then walk back past Mrs Macquarie's Chair, along the edge of Farm Cove to the Opera House, around Circular Quay and back home.

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We live in the Hunter Valley and normally travel down to Sydney the day before, I do hope we aren’t there on a Saturday as Mrs G may bankrupt me at the Rocks Markets before we even depart. 
 

We will normally Stay at either the Holiday Inn (though the recent change of hands May change that) for the absolute convenience, or the Grace, we stayed there a lot when Mrs Gut was consulting with the Dept of Education and always had great service and made friends with a few staff.

 

we will probably have one meal at Ribs and Burgers, it has become a bit of a ritual.

 

Mrs G want to know what company is looking after boarding she hopes to avoid that awful gbenjo bloke.

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We will fly up from Melbourne, the day before the cruise and stay probably at the Meriton Suites in Campbell Street as it is convenient to public transport and Chinatown where we like to eat. Depending on what time we arrive in Sydney we may make our way to Circular Quay by the new tram up George St and catch a ferry over to Manly and wander around.

 

We would plan to board around lunch time and go to the dining room for an enjoyable meal.

 

Leigh

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13 minutes ago, GUT2407 said:

 

Mrs G want to know what company is looking after boarding she hopes to avoid that awful gbenjo bloke.

I'm hoping gbenjo will have arranged for the red carpet to be laid out for us before he and his wife join us on the cruise.

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56 minutes ago, OzKiwiJJ said:

You never get tempted to play "Sydney tourist" for a day like we do? 

 

Another "day trip" we used to do was start in Kirribilli/Milsons Point, walk across the harbour bridge, across the Cahill Expressway, through the Botanic Gardens, and down to Woolloomooloo via the walkway near the Art Gallery. Have lunch in Woolloomooloo, then walk back past Mrs Macquarie's Chair, along the edge of Farm Cove to the Opera House, around Circular Quay and back home.

We have pretended to be tourist for a day especially Sunday with the cheap travel.

But half of Sydney has the same idea.

A stage show is a good reason to go to the big smoke.

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34 minutes ago, possum52 said:

We will fly up from Melbourne, the day before the cruise and stay probably at the Meriton Suites in Campbell Street as it is convenient to public transport and Chinatown where we like to eat. Depending on what time we arrive in Sydney we may make our way to Circular Quay by the new tram up George St and catch a ferry over to Manly and wander around.

 

We would plan to board around lunch time and go to the dining room for an enjoyable meal.

 

Leigh

China town is only a shadow of what it used to be 10 years ago.

We go to Cabramatta,it’s like stepping of a plane into Asia.

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1 hour ago, OzKiwiJJ said:

You never get tempted to play "Sydney tourist" for a day like we do? 

 

We live at Penrith. A 'tourist' thing we do is take a train to Parramatta & then the rivercat into KIng St Wharf, or to the Quay. We then spend the day riding the ferry to Manly or similar. Sometimes we make it a weekend & stay in Darling Harbour & catch up with our son who now lives close to city. We always like to see the ships in the Harbour, and enjoy walking around the water parts of the city.

 

Our embarkation day is usually mid-morning train to CQ, boarding around noon-1pm & starting our cruise with lunch.

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Posted (edited)

We live a  four and a half hours drive from Sydney, so flew in the night before.

We took what we call the Cheese n Wine happy hour flight, 5.30pm, 50 minutes up then down, just enough time to serve a beer for hubby and a wine for me😀

We call Jim our driver to come pick us up from the airport, always good to see him again, $15 each.

We have used our AccorPlus free night ( we save it for Sydney stays before a cruise) for overnight at the McGallery Harbour Rocks Hotel, an old building with lots of history, no lift though, only for luggage, we always ask for a room with a view of the ship so we can see it docked in the morning. 

 

We walked to the Glenmore Hotel for dinner on the rooftop area with a great view of the Opera house or ship departing.

 

A 100 m walk to the OPT in the morning, all down hill.......hope we can get our wine stash on😨

 

 

 

Edited by cheznandy

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6 minutes ago, Chiliburn said:

China town is only a shadow of what it used to be 10 years ago.

We go to Cabramatta,it’s like stepping of a plane into Asia.

We have Chatswood on our doorstep which has become more and more Asian over the past few years. Not quite as Asian as Cabramatta, I suspect, but enough to give us some very good Asian eateries and supermarkets. Three hours free parking during the day which allows plenty of time for lunch and some shopping. It has both train and Metro services as well.

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5 minutes ago, cheznandy said:

We live a  four and a half hours drive from Sydney, so flew in the night before.

We took what we call the Cheese n Wine happy hour flight, 5.30pm, 50 minutes up then down, just enough time to serve a beer for hubby and a wine for me😀

We call Jim our driver to come pick us up from the airport, always good to see him again, $15 each.

We have used our AccorPlus free night ( we save it for Sydney stays before a cruise) for overnight at the McGallery Harbour Rocks Hotel, an old building with lots of history, no lift though, only for luggage, we always ask for a room with a view of the ship so we can see it docked in the morning. 

 

We walked to the Glenmore Hotel for dinner on the rooftop area with a great view of the Opera house of ship departing.

 

A 100 m walk to the OPT in the morning, all down hill.......hope we can get our wine stash on😨

 

 

 

You are most welcome to bring as much of your favourite wines onboard - our sommelier team will tag them, store them, and deliver them to you cabin or one of the restaurants as required.

 

However this is a fully inclusive ship - all drinks (even the top shelf ones), high speed internet, all excursions, all restaurants. 

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Posted (edited)

This cruise is starting to sound pretty good.

What about entertainment? I already hate the cruise director   ROD

I can already see the morning show,pure mental abuse.

Edited by Chiliburn

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First thing I do when I Board is explore the ship, top to bottom fore to aft, I have a mid ship accessible balcony booked, on a sandwich deck, as it is all inclusive I will grab a drink first chance I get (as if I don’t when it isn’t all inclusive).

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59 minutes ago, GUT2407 said:

What soft drink to the carry?

The ship has every soft drink you desire. Even boutique ones. Remember, it's a magical ship.

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Posted (edited)
44 minutes ago, Chiliburn said:

This cruise is starting to sound pretty good.

What about entertainment? I already hate the cruise director   ROD

I can already see the morning show,pure mental abuse.

We'll talk about entertainment on one of our sea days but, no, Rod is not on our ship, this cruise is for experienced cruisers and their families only. BTW this ship has the best cruise director team in the world.

 

Meanwhile your favourite entertainers and shows are onboard, of course, so enjoy but don't tell us about them until later.

Edited by OzKiwiJJ

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27 minutes ago, GUT2407 said:

First thing I do when I Board is explore the ship, top to bottom fore to aft, I have a mid ship accessible balcony booked, on a sandwich deck, as it is all inclusive I will grab a drink first chance I get (as if I don’t when it isn’t all inclusive).

I just upgraded you to a suite - you can tell us about it tomorrow. 😁

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1 hour ago, Chiliburn said:

We have pretended to be tourist for a day especially Sunday with the cheap travel.

But half of Sydney has the same idea.

A stage show is a good reason to go to the big smoke.

Once you can get a Gold Opal card you get $2.50 a day travel every day. We find Wednesdays are a good day to play tourist.

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16 minutes ago, OzKiwiJJ said:

I just upgraded you to a suite - you can tell us about it tomorrow. 😁

If it isn’t mid ship, sandwich deck and accessible give it to someone else.

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1 hour ago, OzKiwiJJ said:

You are most welcome to bring as much of your favourite wines onboard - our sommelier team will tag them, store them, and deliver them to you cabin or one of the restaurants as required.

 

However this is a fully inclusive ship - all drinks (even the top shelf ones), high speed internet, all excursions, all restaurants. 

Someone told me that’s there’s complimentary beer on tap all over the ship,is that true?

He had a bit to much to drink but he said even the lifts have bar service .

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18 minutes ago, GUT2407 said:

If it isn’t mid ship, sandwich deck and accessible give it to someone else.

Of course it is, Gut. It's wherever you want it to be. Now, no more questions about your cabin until tomorrow!

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Posted (edited)
20 minutes ago, Chiliburn said:

Someone told me that’s there’s complimentary beer on tap all over the ship,is that true?

He had a bit to much to drink but he said even the lifts have bar service .

He was exaggerating. There is no bar service in the lifts. They are just normal but very fast lifts.

There are plenty of bars around the ship and we will be discussing those on one of the sea days.

 

Hmmm, I think I just saw that chap. I've sent one of our friendly security crew to have a little chat with him about over-indulging. We're happy for people to enjoy a few drinks but repeated drunken behaviour will result in the passenger being disembarked at the next port.

Edited by OzKiwiJJ

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