11 February 2020|
Tropical paradise here we come!
Trusted Travel staff and participants were bouncing with excitement at the thought of spending nine nights cruising the South Pacific. With the stunning backdrop of the world's most beautiful harbour, we got to know each other over photos in front of spectacular icons like the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge.
Readying ourselves for two days of travel before our first port of call, we were excited to find a wide array of onboard fun available. On Carnival Cruise Lines, they certainly don't skimp on the onboard entertainment. Playlist Productions takes tunes you know and puts them live on stage, transforming them into full blown musical productions featuring pro singers and dancers rocking the house.
Then of course there was the comedy. Locally famous and international acts at the Punchline Comedy Club provided belly-aching laughs with acts ranging from physical tom-foolery, through sharp one-liners to blood-vessel-busting bardiness. Trusted Travel became regulars at the late night comedy shows and even took the opportunity for a quick snap and a joke with the comics themselves.
It's not only the nightly entertainment on board the good ship Carnival Splendor. There's also all range of activities from hot saunas and gyms, to water slides and cinema screenings. Our group included some seasoned bingo players and we came ohhh so close to big cash prizes on a number of occasions.
Before we knew it, we were in Noumea! Noumea is the capital city of New Caledonia and constitutes one of the largest industrial ports in the South Pacific. As such it offers a uniquely authentic insight into the way people live in South Pacific cities. Trusted Travel self-guided our way around local markets, beautiful parks, sites of historical importance and interesting French colonial architecture. We also hopped on a bus to the crystal clear waters and tree-lined boulevard at Lemon Bay to dip our toes in readiness for the days to come.
The next day we awoke to views of true tropical splendour. Mystery Island is undoubtedly one of the Pacific's true jewels. We spent the whole day swimming in crystal clear waters, exploring the island on foot, drinking coconuts straight from the tree and revelling in the culture of the local people. Some of us returned to the boat feeling refreshed and rejuvenated after a relaxing beachside massage.
Moving on to Port Vila, we experienced the famed friendliness of the Vanuatan people while we explored town, swam in turquoise waters and chartered a water taxi for a private ride around harbour.
The cruise home to Sydney was an opportunity to rest up and quietly contemplate how lucky we were to have such an experience. Of course there was no shortage of song and dance, comedy, movies and lovely meals with our new friends. Ohhh and karaoke. Of course we can't forget karaoke!