Considering a Princess cruise to Tahiti in November for a very special trip. Is this a good time? Are other times better? Also, after loving the bigger ships, will we be happy on the smaller ships cruising Tahiti? Any advice appreciated to help us have a great trip.
We went last year just after Thanksgiving. We were on the Windstar, I guess our biggest problem was having to schlep up the stairs when getting off the tender. When you are carrying snorkeling gear/ shopping purchases/video cameras, etc up 23 steps (yes, I counted) it can get pretty tiring.
Also, i rained quite a bit. No way to really forcast this, but the rain stopped on our last day in Moorea. The timing was perfect.
However, we liked the smaller ship (other than the lack of a decent pool), a lot less hustle and bustle. Food was great, and service was quite good
We just did this cruise in February and it was great. Whether you'll like the smaller ship or not depends on what you expect. Think of your big ship then cut everything down to 1/3 its size. One restaurant, two shops, small pool, limited buffet, etc. However, there are some advantages, like being able to get anywhere on the ship within about 2 minutes, no lines, and no waiting for elevators (except when an excursion is returning).
Doesn't the rainy season start in November? Lots of complaints in the reviews from people who sailed in late October-December and found it very wet. We're considering going in April or May for that reason, although we could use the warmth in the winter months!
You can get a Radisson 7 day for about $2100...... per person, considering that includes,
liquor, no tipping, bigger cabins, free soft drinks, water, stocked bar, water sports gear and diving, kayaks etc all included incluging several shore excirsions.... go figure
Princess charges about 1500 to 1700 for the same trip and misses several potrs RADISSON, BECAUSE OF ITS SIZE can hit..... sot the diff is nill. when you add your little extras up..... I sail radisson now because it is cheaper in total reality.....
It figures to less than what you pay for an economy ship..... no joke ... when you add it all together the nickels and dimes add up way fast..... like 3.00 for aq pepsi or water,, 20 bucks a day automatic tip, speciality restauraunt sur charge, wine with dinner, bar charges and tip....... all adds fast.
The Rainy season is from November to April........ The best time is August.
I have taken 3 criuses in this area and foung that seeing tAHITI By ship is the best and most economical way.... rooms on Tahit with out meals run 400 to 1000 a night for the nicer hotels.... over water rooms can fetch 1200 a night ...without meals.....
Hmmm, I don't think it's fair to compare prices for a 7-day Radisson and a 10-day Princess. To get a real comparison, I just did a fast search on Travelocity. I'm comparing oceanviews and balconies, the only room types shown on both Princess and Radisson (Radisson doesn't show insides available right now):
Princess 10-day, $1,345 oceanview, $1,695 balcony: Papeete, Huahine, Rarotonga, Raiatea, Bora Bora, Moorea, Papeete. OR another 10-day Princess itinerary for the same price: Papeete, Moorea, Nuku Hiva, Hiva Oa, Rangiroa, Raiatea, Bora Bora, Papeete.
I don't drink, and my husband doesn't drink much. I think we can pay for diving, specialty restaurants and tips and still come out ahead, given the minimum $3,000 difference between the lines.
To be fair, the only 10-day itinerary I could find on Radisson leaves Dec. 28, which may account for the huge price. But if you look at a 7-day standard Radisson, which is still 3 days less than a standard 10-day Princess itinerary, you're still at $2,303 oceanview, $3,809 balcony for Radisson. Ports are Papeete, Raiatea, Tahaa, Bora Bora, Moorea, Papeete. I think I can skip one port, Tahaa, and instead see two other ports--Huahine/Rarotonga or Nuku Hiva/Hiva Oa--plus have an extra sea day to save $1,000-2,100.
Agree that ships are the most economical way to see the islands, though. During my research, I've been astounded at the land-based prices in French Polynesia! Ouch!
Went on Tahitian Princess in Aug 2004 and it was great. Ship has only 650 passengers and it seemed like after 10 days you knew everybody. I did not see any real skimping in the dining room and only on the embarkation day was the buffet light. One note, on the last day of the cruise although you must leave your cabin, you can use the ship including all meals during the day. This is important since most flights to the states leave in the evening about 10:30.
The difference between the Radison Gaugin and Princess is hudge and I would definitely spend your money on the balconey since some of the scenery in the early am is magnificent
Bassethound - The TP sails two itineraries; we recently returned from the voyage to the Marquesas & Tuomotu's plus Moorea, Bora Bora & Raiatea. On this itinerary, I was happy being on the starboard side. On the "scenic cruising" day, the atolls of Kaukura & Apataki were on starboard. We also got distant views of Manihi, Fatu Hiva & Motane. The TP also docked with starboard facing the town of Uturoa on Raiatea. The port side enjoyed scenic cruising of Tahaa (upon entering the Tahaa/Raiatea lagoon) and Tahuata (upon approaching Hiva Oa). Port side also got distant views of Tikehau & Huahane and was the side to be on during the approach to Bora Bora. If you're doing the Cook Islands itinerary, I can't help you.
Dawn Princess - 12/2007
Gulf Stream Eagle (Charter) - 05/2007
Carnival Legend - 01/2006
Tahitian Princess - 12/2005
Oosterdam - 10/2005
Xpedition - 06/2005
Ryndam - 12/2004
Radiance of the Seas - 05/2004
Statendam - 12/2003
Vision of the Seas - 12/2003
Amazing Grace - 03/2003
Carnival Spirit - 10/2002
Sea Princess - 09/2001
Ocean Princess - 01/2001
Renaissance 3 - 05/2000
Sun Princess - 03/2000
Sceneisle Thanks. We are on the Marquesas itin. Thinking of changing to starboard now. We had it locked as we had a port and my parents had a starboard. But, they can't make it for health problems. So, we lost our starboard balcony.