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P&O Cruises is Australia's most established cruise brand, matching the laid-back and fun nature of the Australian market with entertainment galore, a relaxed atmosphere and family-friendly activities on its comfortable ships. More recently, P&O have been making strides to up their game in terms of providing affordable luxury and a modern cruising experience from destinations including P&O cruises from Sydney, Brisbane and other ports around the South Pacific.
Passengers can expect value for money, friendly staff and plenty to keep them occupied when sailing on the Pacific Explorer, Pacific Dawn, Pacific Jewel, Pacific Aria or Pacific Eden. P&O Cruises offer short breaks for cruisers looking for a few days away somewhere local, as well as long getaways for Australians looking to escape Sydney, Brisbane and other locations to the likes of the South Pacific islands, further afield in Australia or over yonder to Asia.
P&O ships are kitted out with Australian power outlets, operate with Australian dollars and promise that no tipping is required. For many cruise loving Aussies, this sense of home is a major perk when compared to the competing ships that deal only in American dollars, and require those niggly tipping and device converting rituals which can be a bit of pain.
P&O Ships in Australia's Fleet- Who's Who?
P&O Australia transports over 100,000 passengers each year on their dream cruise holidays. The ships sail from Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, Fremantle and even Singapore to cater to as many Australian holiday dreams as possible.
- Pacific Dawn - A part of the fleet since 2007, the Pacific Dawn is P&O Australia's longest-serving vessel. With room for 2020 passengers, she offers a wonderful cruising experience.
- Pacific Jewel - The Pacific Jewel entered service with P&O in 2009 and carries 1950 passengers. She also offers the P&O Edge adventure program.
- Pacific Aria - Pacific Aria along with her sister ship Pacific Eden first set sail in Australia November 2015. Aria takes up residence in different parts of Australia, offering passengers a new and modern experience.
- Pacific Eden - Pacific Eden comes from the Holland America fleet and underwent quite a makeover before her November 2015 debut in Australia. Eden will also move around a bit, delighting passengers with some unique additions to the cruising scene.
- Pacific Explorer - The biggest ship in the fleet, this one brings all the P&O favourites on a bigger scale, with more options and more fun for everyone
Onboard P&O Cruises
Although each of P&O Australia's ships are unique, passengers will be pleased to find a number of the same features and highlights incorporated throughout the line. All ships have the requisite pool, gym and spa, as well as various sports facilities and fitness classes so cruisers can stay healthy and in shape whilst still indulging on their holiday!
If you are looking to enjoy a drink with some entertainment, you will find many bars and lounges to while away the evening onboard a P&O Australia ship. These include, amongst many others, the Dome, a bar which evolves into a nightclub. There's also the more stately and conservative Orient Pub and large theatres in all six ships which put on broadway-style productions, comedy, music and dance. Casinos allow the opportunity for a flutter while in international waters.
P&O keep up with active and fun-loving antipodean cruisers with a range of daytime and evening activities, from bingo and quizzes to games on the big outdoor screen, scrapbooking, dance classes and Martini mixology.
The young ones won't miss out on the fun, with the P&O Kids Clubs for children aged from 3 to 17, all of which offer age-appropriate and well supervised activities. The fantastic family-friendly atmosphere of the cruise line makes it a favourite for those wishing to take the entire clan on holiday.
Dining with P&O Cruises Australia
The currency used onboard is Australian dollars, and tipping is completely optional as per the culture Down Under. Dining is free in several venues, including the main Waterfront Restaurant and the Pantry, a street food market style buffet alternative. For something a little fancier, available on all ships is the spectacular Salt Grill by Luke Mangan at a cover charge, offering an amazing menu from the celebrity chef.
There are additional specialty dining options available on Eden, Aria and Explorer such as Dragon Lady serving Pan Asian cuisine with midnight-blue furnishings and Angelo's Italian restaurant serving stylish food with flair, named after photographer Angelo Frontoni. The Explorer boasts a fantastic specialty pizzeria, 400 Gradi.