S. Pacific & New Zealand Holiday ADVENTURE STARTS HERE

Sydney , Australia | Mystery Island , Vanuatu | Port Vila , Vanuatu | Tauranga , New Zealand | Napier , New Zealand | Picton , New Zealand | Sydney , Australia

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OVATION OF THE SEAS

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YOUR SHIP

OVATION OF THE SEAS

OVATION OF THE SEAS

ELEVATED EXPLORATION

Welcome to one of the world's most innovative ships, filled with game changers, edge-of-your-seat entertainment, and dining that defies the imagination. Score 300-foot high views from the North Star®, order up a cocktail in binary at the Bionic Bar®, and enjoy a full-sensory aerial adventure in Live. Love. Legs.

DAY 1 - Departure Day

Sydney, Australia

DEPARTS:
6:45 PM
WALKING ON

SUNSHINE

Circular Quay is where you'll find the Opera House, museums such as the Art Gallery of NSW and some of the best restaurants in the city. A short walk will take you to the historic George Street district, while top-tier shopping can be found in the historical Queen Victoria Building. A 45-minute ferry ride will take you to the heart of Manly Beach when you cruise from Sydney.

View of the Sydney Opera House, Circular Quay with the Skyline in the distance in Australia
Bondi beach in Sydney, Australia
Boats docked on the pier at Darling Harbour in Sydney, Australia

Circular Quay is where you'll find the Opera House, museums such as the Art Gallery of NSW and some of the best restaurants in the city. A short walk will take you to the historic George Street district, while top-tier shopping can be found in the historical Queen Victoria Building. A 45-minute ferry ride will take you to the heart of Manly Beach when you cruise from Sydney.

View of the Sydney Opera House, Circular Quay with the Skyline in the distance in Australia
Bondi beach in Sydney, Australia
Boats docked on the pier at Darling Harbour in Sydney, Australia
Things To Do

in Sydney

The Sydney Harbour Bridge in Sydney, Australia

Go in Circles

Circular Quay is the perfect place to start exploring Sydney. You can find the Opera House here, and Harbour Bridge is within walking distance. Stride into one of the many walking and pub tours that leave from here. Just 20 minutes away, you can stretch your legs on the iconic Harbour Bridge walk, the first of its kind in the world.

People enjoying Manly beach in Sydney, Australia

Get Manly

Bondi Beach gets all the attention, but Manly Beach in the Northern Beaches is a bit more local. The Corso is lined with shops and restaurants, including local favorite, Hugo's. If surfing is your thing, this is the place to be. The walk from Spit Bridge to Manly is a fantastic way to soak in the city's coastline.

The Gap at Watsons Bay in Sydney, Australia

Walk Watsons

Hop on the ferry or one of the regular buses that go to Watsons Bay to enjoy the scenic hike around South Head. During your journey, you'll enjoy views of Sydney Harbour, North Head, the historic Hornby Lighthouse and, of course, the sapphire-blue Pacific Ocean. The Gap offers breathtaking views of the sea from the rocky cliffside.

A plate of fresh Sydney rock oysters

Local Cuisine

With all the water surrounding you, it's no surprise seafood takes center stage on many plates in the city. Head to Sydney Fish Market for giant Sydney Rock oysters or classic fish and ships. Stop into a local pie shop for a traditional Australian meat pie, or explore Sydney's international side with udon or ramen noodles at a Japanese noodle bar, or seek out shrimp dumplings in Chinatown.

An opal ring displayed on a stone

Shopping

There are plenty of shopping malls in the heart of the city, including Westfield Mall, Pitt Street Mall and the wonderful Queen Victoria Building, which is now a shopping mall featuring top designers. Seek out cutting boards made from local camphor laurel — they're not only beautiful but also have natural antimicrobial properties. During your Sydney cruise vacation, look for jewelry made from opal, the national gemstone of Australia.

DAY 2 - AT SEA

CRUISING

CAN'T MISS FAVORITES

North Star Raised Above Rear of the Ship
Guests Watching a Man Enjoying the iFly

North Star Raised Above Rear of the Ship
Guests Watching a Man Enjoying the iFly

Things to Do

DAY 3 - AT SEA

CRUISING

FOR FOODIES

Delicious Lobster Al Forno
QN Culinary, specialty dining, smoking eggs, Wonderland, culinary, cuisine

Delicious Lobster Al Forno
QN Culinary, specialty dining, smoking eggs, Wonderland, culinary, cuisine

Things to Do

DAY 4 - AT SEA

CRUISING

SHOW STOPPERS

Two 70 Virtual Concert "Santa Fe & the Fat City Horns"

Two 70 Virtual Concert "Santa Fe & the Fat City Horns"

Things to Do

DAY 5 - TENDERED

Mystery Island, Vanuatu

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
6:00 PM

Relax in Vanuatu

On Mystery Island, you can live the simple life. Stroll around the entire island and find your special secluded spot. Go on a hunt for the old military airstrip built during World War II. Melt into a traditional Vanuatu massage right on the beach. Or simply dive into the warm, turquoise waters and make friends with the exotic marine life and coral.

The beach with palm trees in Mystery Island, Vanuatu
A face carved in a tree trunk on the beach of Mystery Island, Vanuatu
Thatched roof shelter on the beach with tropical plants and trees on Mystery Island, Vanuatu

On Mystery Island, you can live the simple life. Stroll around the entire island and find your special secluded spot. Go on a hunt for the old military airstrip built during World War II. Melt into a traditional Vanuatu massage right on the beach. Or simply dive into the warm, turquoise waters and make friends with the exotic marine life and coral.

The beach with palm trees in Mystery Island, Vanuatu
A face carved in a tree trunk on the beach of Mystery Island, Vanuatu
Thatched roof shelter on the beach with tropical plants and trees on Mystery Island, Vanuatu
Things To Do

in Mystery Island

View of underwater sea life in Mystery Island, Vanuatu

Go on a Coral Safari

Because Mystery Island is so secluded, the coral is exceptionally healthy and the fish plentiful. Whether you are swimming or snorkeling, you'll pass clown fish, parrot fish, barracudas and majestic sea turtles. You might even be lucky enough to glimpse a seahorse.

Woman on a stand up paddle boat over turquoise waters

What's SUP?

Hop on a quick boat ride to the nearby inhabited island of Aneityum for a little adventure. From there, you'll be given a stand-up paddleboard (SUP) and a quick beginner's lesson on how to use it. Enjoy the remainder of your time by SUPing around the lush bay in cool island style.

A beach paradise with a wooden boat in Mystery Island

Embrace the Escape

Unlike most of your other stops, this island is unfrequented and small — give yourself permission to slow down. Take a break from the real world and take in the shimmering turquoise ocean with your Mystery Island cruise. Dig your toes into the white powdery sand, and breathe in the warm, tropical air.

Grilled lobster on the beach

Local Cuisine

The inhabitants of the nearby Aneityum come to the island to prepare food and entertainment for visitors. They serve traditional Vanuatuan food, which is simple and delicious. Cruise to Mystery Island and tuck in to freshly caught grilled lobster for lunch, and treat yourself to island banana pie for dessert.

Sarongs for sale on the beach

Shopping

Along the beach, you can find small market stalls set up by locals. They sell postcards, sarongs and traditional trinkets. For a more cultural experience, have your hair braided by one of the local women or enjoy a traditional Vanuatu massage on the beach.

DAY 6 - TENDERED

Port Vila, Vanuatu

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
4:00 PM

Island Paradise

Small, bustling and surrounded by sky blue waters, Port Vila is the perfect spot to soak up Vanuatu's natural beauty. Learn about the islands' rich history at the Vanuatu Cultural Center, which showcases indigenous artifacts and features exhibitions on the practice of sand drawing. Marvel at rainforest-surrounded waterfalls of Mele Cascades. Or ride a water taxi to nearby Pele Island and soak up the sun on a powdery white beach.

Mele cascades waterfalls at Port Vila, Vanuatu
Scene of Port Vila harbor, Vanuatu
Sky deck view of Port Vila, Vanuatu

Small, bustling and surrounded by sky blue waters, Port Vila is the perfect spot to soak up Vanuatu's natural beauty. Learn about the islands' rich history at the Vanuatu Cultural Center, which showcases indigenous artifacts and features exhibitions on the practice of sand drawing. Marvel at rainforest-surrounded waterfalls of Mele Cascades. Or ride a water taxi to nearby Pele Island and soak up the sun on a powdery white beach.

Mele cascades waterfalls at Port Vila, Vanuatu
Scene of Port Vila harbor, Vanuatu
Sky deck view of Port Vila, Vanuatu
Things To Do

in Port Vila

Two wooden tam tamsin from tree trunks in Port Vila, Vanuatu

One for the History Books

The history of Port Vila alone is impressive — add that to the story of the entire South Pacific, and you've got the Vanuatu Cultural Center. It houses one of the most extensive collections of South Pacific artifacts on the planet. Outrigger canoes, photos, videos and traditional sand drawing exhibitions await.

Slippery path with guide ropes at Meele Cascades Waterfalls in Port Vila, Vanuatu

Natural Heat Remedy

It gets pretty hot and sticky on a tropical island. Do like the locals do and cool down at the Mele Cascades Waterfall. At 150 feet high, the spray alone is refreshing. A bus ride and a brief walk up the valley gets you to this spectacular feat of nature.

The beautiful tropical Hideaway Island by Port Vila, Vanuatu

Find the Perfect Hideaway

A quick drive and a water taxi trip will bring you to the tiny Hideaway Island. Jump right in and snorkel in crystal clear waters teeming with rainbows of fish. Jump onboard a Port Vila, Vanuatu cruise to swim to the world's only underwater post office, and post a waterproof postcard to your friends back home.

Traditional Fried Pancakes in Port Vila, Vanuatu

Local Cuisine

For cheap eats, go to Mama's Market, where you can sample taro root pancakes, Vanuatu French fries — delicious flakes of coconut deep fried and salted to perfection —or traditional lap lap, grated yam and banana cooked with coconut cream in an earthen oven. Or dine al fresco along the waterfront: Modern eateries serve up French-inspired takes on local fish and grass-fed beef, which is some of the world's best.

Woodem Tam-Tams spiritual totems being created in Port Vila, Vanuatu

Shopping

Along Wharf Road in the center of town, you'll see the charming Vanuatu Handicraft Market. Here, local vendors sell authentic Vanuatu wooden carvings, as well as prints and other crafts. If you're looking for something a bit more tailored during your cruise, pop in at the nearby Pandanus shop, which supports local creators.

DAY 7 - AT SEA

CRUISING

SUN DRENCHED DAYS

Guests Enjoying the Solarium
Man Doing Air Trick on Flowrider

Guests Enjoying the Solarium
Man Doing Air Trick on Flowrider

Things to Do

DAY 8 - AT SEA

CRUISING

LIGHTS OUT NIGHTS OUT

Couple Enjoying a Bottle of Wine
Bottles at the Bionic Bar

Couple Enjoying a Bottle of Wine
Bottles at the Bionic Bar

Things to Do

DAY 9 - DOCKED

Tauranga, New Zealand

ARRIVES:
9:00 AM
DEPARTS:
4:00 PM

Welcomem to New Zealand

Start your Tauranga adventure at Mount Maunganui — hike to the extinct volcano's summit for panoramic views. Then, stroll the footbridge from the main beach at Maunganui to Leisure Island, also called Moturiki, where famous blowholes erupt. Take the 45-minute drive to Hobbiton to live like you're "Lord of the Rings" character. Or visit McLaren Falls Park, where you can trek past exotic flora to see the crashing waterfall.

Panoramic coastal view of the beach and resorts in Tauranga, New Zealand
Mount Maunganui in New Zealand
View of the ocean from Mount Maunganui

Start your Tauranga adventure at Mount Maunganui — hike to the extinct volcano's summit for panoramic views. Then, stroll the footbridge from the main beach at Maunganui to Leisure Island, also called Moturiki, where famous blowholes erupt. Take the 45-minute drive to Hobbiton to live like you're "Lord of the Rings" character. Or visit McLaren Falls Park, where you can trek past exotic flora to see the crashing waterfall.

Panoramic coastal view of the beach and resorts in Tauranga, New Zealand
Mount Maunganui in New Zealand
View of the ocean from Mount Maunganui
Things To Do

in Tauranga

A Hobbit home from a famous movie set

Hole Up in Hobbiton

Take an excursion to Middle Earth, or at least to the filming location of Bilbo's house in the Shire. Visit the 44 Hobbit Holes and The Green Dragon Inn to learn more about how "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings" were filmed here by New Zealander Sir Peter Jackson.

A walking path up Mount Maunganui

Climb a Volcano

If you're hungry for a hike, head to Mount Maunganui. Hike 30 minutes or so up one of the trails to the summit, where there's an archaeological site of a Maori fort, as well as excellent views of the beach, Pacific Ocean and the harbor.

Geothermal pool in New Zealand

Geothermal Wonders

In nearby Rotorura, visit a geothermal park like Wai-O-Tapu to see boiling mud, brightly colored pools of hot water and the Lady Knox geyser. Stroll through Rotorura's city parks to see smaller pools of bubbling mud and steaming water, or visit the Polynesian Spa for a hot-water massage.

Grilled lamb on a white plate with roasted vegetables

Local Cuisine

Named the Bay of Plenty by Captain Cook, the Tauranga area has an abundance of products from the land and sea. Cruise to Tauranga and try lamb belly with burnt pumpkin or crusted local venison loin at a hip brasserie in downtown Tauranga. You'll find wine here, too, especially Pinot Noir — Mills Reef Winery has an on-site restaurant where you can order creative, Asian-inspired dishes alongside your glass of choice.

A jar of manuka honey

Shopping

In the town of Paengaroa, about a half hour away, you'll find the production plant of Comvita, one of the world's leading producers of manuka honey. Take a couple jars home, or pick up beauty products made with the sweet stuff. Take home a bottle of your favorite wine from a local vineyard, or seek out local jade and sterling silver jewelry — Jens Hansen Ringmakers in Nelson even makes a replica of the One Ring from Tolkien's epic.

DAY 10 - DOCKED

Napier, New Zealand

ARRIVES:
11:30 AM
DEPARTS:
7:00 PM

Explore Napier

From the port, shuttle buses and taxis take you the short distance to the vibrant downtown. It's easy to explore Napier's Art Deco architecture and boat-packed seaside on foot. Or take the 30-minute drive out to Cape Kidnappers for a hike along the dramatic sandstone cliffs or a relaxing round of golf. If you feel like heading indoors, you can admire both native and worldwide species at the National Aquarium of New Zealand.

Napier beach in New Zealand with storm clouds
A sawtooth roof-line of an old white industrial building in Napier, New Zealand
Napier, New Zealand, known as the art deco capital of the world. Some of the buildings and decorative archways on the promenade.

From the port, shuttle buses and taxis take you the short distance to the vibrant downtown. It's easy to explore Napier's Art Deco architecture and boat-packed seaside on foot. Or take the 30-minute drive out to Cape Kidnappers for a hike along the dramatic sandstone cliffs or a relaxing round of golf. If you feel like heading indoors, you can admire both native and worldwide species at the National Aquarium of New Zealand.

Napier beach in New Zealand with storm clouds
A sawtooth roof-line of an old white industrial building in Napier, New Zealand
Napier, New Zealand, known as the art deco capital of the world. Some of the buildings and decorative archways on the promenade.
Things To Do

in Napier

Art deco architecture of Napier, New Zealand

Zigzag Through Town

Wander around Napier admiring the Art Deco architecture. Or, if you like more structure, hop onto a tour of the town. Don't miss the zigzags of the Daily Telegraph Building, the Masonic Lodge and the National Tobacco Company Building, around the shore in Ahuriri. Look for the 50 different street murals around town and soak in the colors.

Birds found in Cape Kidnappers Gannet Colony in Hawkes Bay in New Zealand

Don't Kidnap the Gannets

Cape Kidnappers, the headland just east of Napier, is one of the easiest places in the world to see gannets. Usually living on isolated islands, you can view the Black Reef gannet colony from the beach. Watch for their high dives into the sea when fishing.

Algae rocks on the beach with the sea in the background in Napier, New Zealand

Queen of the Reef

Stroll along the Marine Parade to admire the Norfolk pines, gardens and public art with your Napier cruise. The symbol of Napier, Pania, is here — epitomized in a bronze statue. She's from Maori mythology and is said to have been more at home in the sea than on land. Legend has it that she became the reef, and the Maori consider her fishing grounds to be sacred.

Mussels in tomato and herb sauce in New Zealand

Local Cuisine

A Napier restaurant, Pacifica, surprised the New Zealand dining world when it was named New Zealand's 2017 Restaurant of the Year. Chef Jeremy Rameka uses local ingredients, and judges said that his menu "captures the essence of Kiwi food, with finesse." The small blue bungalow is easy to find on the Marine Parade. Cruise to Napier to try the Sartori Prosecco with warmed kingfish, lemonfish marinated in coconut cream, lime and chili.

Manuka honey in a bowl with a wooden spoon

Shopping

The Napier Business District is Napier's main shopping area. It has plenty of boutiques and shops on the partially pedestrianized Emerson Street. Look for local manuka honey from Arataki Honey Centre. Need more sweets? Take a taxi to the Silky Oak Chocolate Company and museum for chocolate history and treats.

DAY 11 - DOCKED

Picton, New Zealand

ARRIVES:
10:00 AM
DEPARTS:
5:00 PM

Explore Picton

Ships dock at both Shakespeare Bay and at Waitohi Wharf. From there, hop onto the free shuttle and head into the heart of Picton. Picton is very walkable, though you may want to get back on the water to look for wildlife or head into nearby wine country on a tour. Taste the gourmet delights New Zealand is famous for on a wine and chocolate shore excursion to the South Island's renowned Marlborough wine region.

Boats in Whatamago Bay, in the vicinity of Picton, New Zealand
Boats Picton Harbor in New Zealand
Aerial view of Picton and Marlborough Sounds in New Zealand

Ships dock at both Shakespeare Bay and at Waitohi Wharf. From there, hop onto the free shuttle and head into the heart of Picton. Picton is very walkable, though you may want to get back on the water to look for wildlife or head into nearby wine country on a tour. Taste the gourmet delights New Zealand is famous for on a wine and chocolate shore excursion to the South Island's renowned Marlborough wine region.

Boats in Whatamago Bay, in the vicinity of Picton, New Zealand
Boats Picton Harbor in New Zealand
Aerial view of Picton and Marlborough Sounds in New Zealand
Things To Do

in Picton

View of the vineyards in the Marlborough district by Picton, New Zealand

Quaff the Elixir

Take a wine tour to learn more about the Marlborough region's distinctive wines. The area has over 35 tasting cellars so you can determine whether your favorites are the famous labels or the smaller boutique producers. Taste your way through three significant wine regions on the Classic New Zealand Wine Trail. Enjoy stunning scenery, beautiful forest parks, buzzing nightlife and indulgent food experiences as you journey from Hawkes Bay in the North Island to Marlborough in the South Island.

Barrel of antique ship canon on Marlborough Sounds in Picton, New Zealand

Tour the Edwin Fox

This teak sailing ship, built in 1853, is one of the world's oldest surviving wooden ships. It is now a museum at Picton's Dunbar Wharf. See artifacts and learn about the Edwin Fox's storied past, including carrying pale ale to India, convicts to Australia and perhaps even Florence Nightingale to the Crimean War.

Historic steam train in Picton, New Zealand

Fly High

See rare aircraft at the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre, located about 30 minutes from Picton. It's even possible to take a joyride on a Russian fighter or an open cockpit biplane. Ride there on the Passchendaele, a steam locomotive from 1915. Cruise to Picton to enjoy the rolling countryside from a whole new perspective.

Plate of fresh Oysters in Picton, New Zealand

Local Cuisine

You've got to drink the local wine in Marlborough during your cruise to Picton. Marlborough's Sauvignon Blancs are lush, herbaceous and often have a bit of grapefruit or lime zing. It's perfectly drinkable on its own, and pairs very well with the area's oysters, clams, king salmon and greenshell mussels.

Maori pounamu jade Koru pendant in Picton, New Zealand

Shopping

New Zealand Pounamu jade, greenstone, is found in the northern rivers of the South Island. It is handcrafted into beautiful jewelry, often into designs meaningful to the Maori culture. Picton also has a high concentration of potters, weavers, glass blowers and other artisans. Look for New Zealand blue pearls too, so you can feel like a princess.

DAY 12 - AT SEA

CRUISING

CAN'T MISS FAVORITES

North Star Raised Above Rear of the Ship
Guests Watching a Man Enjoying the iFly

North Star Raised Above Rear of the Ship
Guests Watching a Man Enjoying the iFly

Things to Do

DAY 13 - AT SEA

CRUISING

FOR FOODIES

Delicious Lobster Al Forno
QN Culinary, specialty dining, smoking eggs, Wonderland, culinary, cuisine

Delicious Lobster Al Forno
QN Culinary, specialty dining, smoking eggs, Wonderland, culinary, cuisine

Things to Do

DAY 14 - Arrival Day

Sydney, Australia

ARRIVES:
6:30 AM
WALKING ON

SUNSHINE

The Blue Mountains, just an hour west of central Sydney, feel like they're world away from the hustle and bustle of the city. With more than 1 million hectares of forests, cliffs, canyons, caves and waterfalls — and plenty of walking paths to take you there — this is one of the best day trips Sydney has to offer. Quaint towns such as Katoomba stand in stark contrast to iconic landmarks such as the Three Sisters, the towering rock formation overlooking the valley.

Aerial view of Double Bay in Sydney, Australia
A coastal walkway near Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia

The Blue Mountains, just an hour west of central Sydney, feel like they're world away from the hustle and bustle of the city. With more than 1 million hectares of forests, cliffs, canyons, caves and waterfalls — and plenty of walking paths to take you there — this is one of the best day trips Sydney has to offer. Quaint towns such as Katoomba stand in stark contrast to iconic landmarks such as the Three Sisters, the towering rock formation overlooking the valley.

Aerial view of Double Bay in Sydney, Australia
A coastal walkway near Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia
Things To Do

in Sydney

The Sydney Harbour Bridge in Sydney, Australia

Go in Circles

Circular Quay is the perfect place to start exploring Sydney. You can find the Opera House here, and Harbour Bridge is within walking distance. Stride into one of the many walking and pub tours that leave from here. Just 20 minutes away, you can stretch your legs on the iconic Harbour Bridge walk, the first of its kind in the world.

People enjoying Manly beach in Sydney, Australia

Get Manly

Bondi Beach gets all the attention, but Manly Beach in the Northern Beaches is a bit more local. The Corso is lined with shops and restaurants, including local favorite, Hugo's. If surfing is your thing, this is the place to be. The walk from Spit Bridge to Manly is a fantastic way to soak in the city's coastline.

The Gap at Watsons Bay in Sydney, Australia

Walk Watsons

Hop on the ferry or one of the regular buses that go to Watsons Bay to enjoy the scenic hike around South Head. During your journey, you'll enjoy views of Sydney Harbour, North Head, the historic Hornby Lighthouse and, of course, the sapphire-blue Pacific Ocean. The Gap offers breathtaking views of the sea from the rocky cliffside.

A plate of fresh Sydney rock oysters

Local Cuisine

With all the water surrounding you, it's no surprise seafood takes center stage on many plates in the city. Head to Sydney Fish Market for giant Sydney Rock oysters or classic fish and ships. Stop into a local pie shop for a traditional Australian meat pie, or explore Sydney's international side with udon or ramen noodles at a Japanese noodle bar, or seek out shrimp dumplings in Chinatown.

An opal ring displayed on a stone

Shopping

There are plenty of shopping malls in the heart of the city, including Westfield Mall, Pitt Street Mall and the wonderful Queen Victoria Building, which is now a shopping mall featuring top designers. Seek out cutting boards made from local camphor laurel — they're not only beautiful but also have natural antimicrobial properties. During your Sydney cruise vacation, look for jewelry made from opal, the national gemstone of Australia.

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