Carnival Spirit Cruise from Sydney

Carnival Spirit Cruise from Sydney

As a family we flew to Sydney from Brisbane with Virgin Australia to board the Carnival Spirit for a 7-night cruise to New Caledonia.

Having the kids in tow, I decided to ditch the usual air and train travel in Sydney and pay the bit extra for the coach transfers from the airport to the cruise terminal at Circular Quay. With small children and luggage, this was worth every cent.

We arrived and went through all the check-in formalities, before boarding the ship. We were beyond excited! We had a cabin on deck 10 with a balcony. Like all cruise ships, the cabins are not spacious but there is a place for everything and you will not be in the cabin enough to care. My husband and kids were a little daunted by the size of the ship and where everything was located but after a day they were right at home. The numerous dining options were amazing – even the fussiest eater found herself plenty to choose from. The kids club was amazing and my youngest loved it but my eldest wanted to be a big girl and dine with us followed by the stage shows at night.

We visited Isle of Pines, Mare and Noumea. Isle of Pines is stunning with lots of great swimming and snorkelling options. At Mare, it is worth paying for the shore excursion as the main beach is 20 minutes from the jetty where the tenders pull into which is too far to walk. We decided to do the Choo Choo Train tour in Noumea as my youngest loves trains and we thought this would be a great way to have a good look around, which it was.

We went back to the cruise ship for lunch and then got on the free bus service which took us along the foreshore area of Lemon Bay. Leaving Noumea behind, we started the return journey to Sydney with beautiful calm seas and whale watching to be had.

The last night was incredibly rough and it was interesting to see how the crew handle such conditions – with grace and poise and amazing balance carrying stacks of plates through a busy restaurant! 4-5 metre swell was interesting, and you do feel the ship moving. The pools were emptied, and the top decks closed off. Some children in the kids club were unwell but my two were little champions and just carried on like it was nothing.

Best family holiday we have EVER HAD – for me it is the only family holiday where I have NEVER had to lift a finger. We all slept well, ate well and had so much fun. Cruising is without a doubt an amazing value-for-money holiday.