The Melbourne Cup
has come and gone for another year, and a good time was had by the many thousands of punters. The lucky first-place horse, Prince of Penzance, was ridden by the first ever female jockey to win the Cup, a great historic moment for Australia's most prestigious thoroughbred race.
Amongst the crowds were some cruisers who took the chance to combine seafaring and spectating with the 2015 Melbourne Cup cruise deals offered by P&O Australia
. Cruise Sale Finder's general manager, Ryan Posa, joined the P&O group in their "Enclosure" private area to report back on the experience.
Well worth the upgrade
The basic cruise fare for the various Melbourne Cup packages by P&O covers the cruise (including of course food, accommodation and onboard entertainment), transfers and general admission tickets to Flemington Racecourse for the day itself. However, there are a range of upgrades which you can add on for a premium experience. Some of these are for venues and events open to the public such as the Village, the Parade Lounge, the Rose Room and the Makybe Diva Marquee.
This year there was also an upgrade exclusive to P&O passengers: the P&O Enclosure. This private area was where Ryan spent his day at the races, and he was impressed, commenting that "it's definitely worth it to be here, especially if you're already spending the time and money to come. It's so busy at the cup, there's so much going on, and I can imagine that if you were just using your General Admission ticket it would be a very busy time."
The Enclosure has a lot to offer besides a bit of breathing space. Those who opted for the package had access to food and drinks for sustenance during the long day, a comfortable place to relax and socialise, and even a private section of the stands from where they could watch the race.
As for the races themselves? Ryan said it was a fantastic to experience the buzzing atmosphere of such an important Aussie event.
Plan ahead for a Melbourne Cup cruise in 2016
P&O and Carnival are already looking forward to next year's events. P&O is offering 6-night Melbourne Cup cruises from Sydney
on the Pacific Jewel
and Pacific Pearl
, along with a week-long itinerary from Brisbane
on the Pacific Dawn
. All spend at least 2 days and 1 night (the Sydney ones spend 2 nights) docked in Melbourne
, with transfers to the cup as well as tickets so you won't waste time getting there on public transport.
Carnival brings a touch of American style to its 6-night Melbourne Cup cruise
from Sydney on the Carnival Spirit
in 2016, incorporating Halloween festivities into the sailing which departs on the 30th of October. Celebrate the spooky holiday at sea and then arrive into Melbourne for the main event the next day, with tickets and transfers included in the fare. The Spirit stays there for 2 nights before sailing back to Sydney.