As you will be well aware of by now (if you’ve read my three part blogging series), I recently went on a week-long adventure to the islands of Vanuatu and New Caledonia. We visited the capital of New Caledonia, Noumea before we travelled onward to both Lifou and Vanuatu’s capital, Port Vila.

This was not only my first ever overseas adventure, but it was also my first ever cruising experience! Although I was absolutely terrified of heading out into the middle of the ocean, I couldn’t turn down an opportunity to travel with P&O Cruises in order to help my best friend celebrate her 21st birthday!


P&O Cruises Australia: Pacific Dawn Ship Review

Although, as I previously mentioned, I was terrified of cruising off into the middle of the ocean, I was also excited beyond belief. I had absolutely no idea what this adventure had in store for me! I’d been watching ‘Cruise Ship Diaries’ pretty much everyday before my cruise and I’d encouraged my Grandparents and other family members to share their Cruise stories with me just so I could have the slightest idea of what to expect.

The only thing I knew before I hopped onboard the Pacific Dawn that Saturday morning was that I was going to have a brilliant time, filled with the creation of so many fun memories. At least, that’s what my family had told me of their cruising adventures.

Not only were they right, but I was beyond surprised at how smooth, pleasant and easy the entire process, from beginning to end and everything in between, went down!

Food on Board

There is absolutely no shortage of food on board and the entire time I was so baffled at how they kept their food so fresh for seven days! Especially the fruit-when I travel I tend to avoid fruit because I say “well I’m on holiday, so who cares” but this time, I was reaching for the fruit because it tasted so damn nice!

There were plenty of restaurants and places to eat but we spent most of our time in the buffet and main restaurant where the prices were included in our cruise cost. Alas, we could have been more adventurous in our picks but these two places did not disappoint with dinner leaving us full after every 3-course meal that we devoured and breakfast and lunch leaving us satisfied and ready to take on a day of exploring or sun baking.

Not to mention, I am both vegetarian and have a nut allergy and the restaurant was more than happy to create specialised meals for me every evening-all being both delicious and exotic.

Service on Board

The service was actually one of my favourite things on board because everyone is genuinely so kind and they all actually give a damn about the adventure you’re having! There was not a single time where I passed one of the workers on board and they didn’t either say hello or ask me how my day was going or actually stopped and had a short chat with my friend and I.

In fact, there were several of the workers with whom we became friends with, spending many times throughout our trip getting to know them and letting them get to know us.

Honestly, the service was immaculate and I felt as if each person, whether or not they did, genuinely enjoyed their job and genuinely enjoyed speaking to each member they passed.

It was an incredibly personal feeling that was felt, despite there being thousands of people on board-what a remarkable way to feel!

Rooms on Board

We had the Ocean View room where essentially, we had a window from which we had the privilege of knowing when we were close to land and when we were not, without ever leaving the comfort of our own room. With our own bathroom and wardrobe and 24 hour room service, the rooms were the perfect size for two best friends embarking on a wild adventure together.

Not to mention our beds were incredibly soft. Like, so comfortably soft.


Special touches:

entertainment, adventure, and any other perks


Shows basically every night. Bingo nights. Live music. Comedy shows for adults only. A club that closed in the early hours of the morning. Theme nights. Art shows. Cooking shows. Movies screening every evening.

One could never be bored with the entertainment that was on board the Pacific Dawn and alas, one never was! I experienced almost every one of these and none of them left me feeling disappointed.




Not something I took part in purely because of the extra cost, and I’m a lady both on a budget and with a heart condition, but the adventure on board was also endless. A rock climbing wall, giant trampoline and a giant flying fox all part of the adventure that anyone, children and adults alike, could experience.


Other perks? 

The packages!

There was an alcoholic beverage package that could be purchased and a soft drink package- we purchased the latter which had us saving much needed $$ on non-alcoholic drinks all week!

There was also a photo package which my friend and I went halves in, spending around $80 each to receive every single professional photo that was taken of us onboard.

My favourite thing however was the little towel animals that we received on our beds or beside our window every second or third morning! 



Overall, I just really, really, enjoyed the entire experience with P&O! They made everything so easy and smooth and never was there a moment where I was totally freaking out. Even on the rougher days at sea, they ensured that we were aware of the weather ahead. Honestly, another cruise with P&O could not come quick enough!


Massive thank you to P&O Cruises for imprinting on me both a love for travel and cruises, especially since this was my first time both overseas and on a cruise! My opinions are, as always, my own. 


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