24 - March 9, 2008 Day 1:
Departure from USA
Day 1: Departure from USA
Day 2: Continuation of flight
Day 3: Sydney, Australia
Sydney is the perfect place to begin our adventure! As one of the oldest settlements in Australia as well as one of the world's top travel destinations, Sydney offers Aussie hospitality combined with spectacular attractions -- from its dramatic harbor and cosmopolitan city center, to its protected coves, miles of beautiful beaches, and the spectacular Blue Mountains. Some sites to see in the “capital of the Pacific Rim” include the world-famous Opera House, the incredible harbor and the golden sands of Bondi Beach. We set sail this evening around 9 p.m.
Day 4: At Sea
Spend some time getting to know your ship. True to her name, the 2,670-passenger Sapphire Princess is a jewel on the seas, filled with innovative features and amenities. Swim in one of four sparkling pools, shop the boutiques or get a massage in the Lotus Spa. Dine casually on pizza and burgers or more elegantly in one of the many formal dining rooms and specialty restaurants.
Day 5: Melbourne, Australia
We embark this morning at approximately 9 a.m. in the city of Melbourne to find a huge, sprawling city with something for everyone—culture, art, fashion, and friendly Australians. It is also Australia's financial and commercial center. Easy to explore, at the heart of the city is the Golden Mile, the city's governmental and business corridor, home to hotels, shops, restaurants and theaters. Melbourne also offers one of the world's finest parks - the Royal Botanic Gardens. Take an optional tour to this city's charming Victorian-era architecture and visit the countryside via a vintage steam train. Departure this evening is at 6 p.m.
Day 6: At Sea
Spend some time today getting acquainted with the variety of restaurants aboard the Sapphire. The Princess chefs are true culinary artists who insist on serving the very finest cuisine - and it shows. The entire Princess fleet has been inducted into the prestigious Chaîne des Rôtisseurs gastronomic society. Each chef's menu is creative and the selections change every day. Pair that with impeccable service and you're in for an unforgettable gourmet experience. This ship offers formal dining options in cruise tradition, with Traditional Fixed Seating at the same times for each meal, with attentive service provided by your own waiter throughout the cruise. There is also a variety of Anytime dining choices, which means you aren't limited to eating at a fixed time or place on the ship. Instead, the choice of when and where you want to eat is flexible, based only on your stomach's whim. You may also choose to delight Specialty Restaurants (reservations and cover charge sometimes required). You can also find casual dining options, such as the wine and caviar bar, ice cream bar, pizzeria, grill or 24-hour complimentary room service!
Day 7: Hobart, Australia (Tasmania)
Our vessel arrives this moring at 8 a.m. to visit Hobart, Australia's second oldest city and state capital of Tasmania. Home to more than 90 National Trust buildings, Hobart combines colonial character with a metropolitan lifestyle. It is the gateway to Tasmania's other scenic attractions and a range of shore activities lets you experience the best of both worlds. Opt to explore the historic core at the colonial village of Battery Point, the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, as well as Theatre Royal, the country's oldest theater. There's also wine-tasting and pub-hopping to enjoy. Tasmania's capital has much in common with Sydney. Founded but a few years later, Hobart also owes its origins to the establishment of a penal colony. It has a dramatic setting like Sydney. Seen from its fine deep-water harbor, Hobart spills over the lower reaches of the Derwent Valley as Mt. Wellington towers in the background. You will find much of the city's heritage centered on the waterfront. North of the city stretches the vast parkland of the Queen's Domain. We depart this evening at 6 p.m.
Day 8 and 9: At Sea
The many activities onboard Princess’s ships are designed to stimulate, educate, entertain, inspire and sweat - not necessarily in that order. But, you can be sure they will do their best to cover all the bases. And from art auctions to virtual golf, this ship is loaded with fun things to do. Enjoy amenities such as pools, hot tubs, sports activities, art collections, the library, and don’t forget shopping in the boutiques.
Day 10: Fiordland National Park, New Zealand (Scenic Cruising)
Fifteen thousand years ago, glaciers carved out Fiordland National Park. Witness what nature perfected over time — its snowcapped mountains, roaring rivers filled with ice, and the lush green grasslands that blanket this famed wilderness landscape in southwest New Zealand. The mile-high glacier peak of Mitre Peak is a Milford Sound landmark and offers an awesome scenic point as well as photo opportunity.
Day 11: Dunedin, New Zealand (Port Chalmers)
Dunedin is the old Gaelic name for Edinburgh. Uncover this "kiwi" city's Scottish heritage roots this morning as you meander its octagon-shaped streets and quaint Victorian buildings. Opt to visit the immense Flemish Renaissance-style Dunedin Railway Station with a grandiose style that will inspire you. We sail this evening at 6 p.m.
Day 12: Christchurch, New Zealand (Lyttelton)
Arrive at 8 this morning at the charming scenic port of Christchurch and view her stunning harbor with sparkling aquamarine waters. Christchurch has a rich history of adventurers who used Christchurch as a gateway for Antarctic explorations. Famed explorers Robert Falcon Scott and Ernest Shackleton used the port of Lyttelton as a departure point for their expeditions. Departure tonight is 6 p.m.
Day 13: At Sea
To say the nightlife onboard the Sapphire Princess is entertaining is an understatement. The performers are seasoned professionals and their performances are of the same caliber as what you'd see on a Broadway stage. The theater productions, lounge acts, movies and casino venues are just some of the fun onboard.
Day 14: Tauranga, New Zealand
We arrive very early this morning in the "Bay of Plenty" which was named by Captain Cook after the prosperous Maori villages of the region generously replenished his supplies. Tauranga, the chief city, is a bustling port, an agricultural and timber center and a popular seaside resort. Tauranga is the gateway to Rotorua, a geothermal wonderland that is the heart of Maori culture and New Zealand's primary tourist attraction. Tauranga, meaning "sheltered waters" in Maori, is rich with native culture and tradition. Waterskiing, windsurfing and deep-sea fishing abound in Tauranga Harbour. Rotorua with its healing, natural mineral springs is an ideal place to unwind in a therapeutic bath. We sail tonight at 6 pm.
Day 15: Auckland, New Zealand
Our voyage ends this morning as we doc at 6 a.m. Shop along the picturesque waterfront of this ever-expanding city, home to one-third of the country's population. From museums housing Maori artifacts to extinct volcanic peaks, this pedestrian-friendly city is the perfect combination of nature and commerce.