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Cruising is a great way to watch the iconic Aussie race in style

Sarah on Nov 04, 2015

Cruising is a great way to watch the iconic Aussie race in style

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 and Carnival. 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."

P&O enclosure at the Melbourne cup event

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.

P&O enclosure

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. 

I have enjoyed visiting as much of the world as possible over the years. Europe and the Mediterranean are personal favourites, but there is so much to see very close to our little Australasian corner of the globe- one of my top travel experiences was snorkeling with tropical fish and turtles in New Caledonia! Cruising is a fantastic way to see it all, and we hope to make booking a cruise easier for both first-timers and old salts. From ship tips to destination news and views, we will keep you up-to-date. Happy cruising!

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  • Nov 5, 2015 by Jeanette kelly

    Would love to go on a Melbourne cup cruise but have booked twice and both time the cruise has been cancelled could not go through that disappointment again