26 Memorable Moments on P&O Pacific Dawn

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Our life motto has always been “it’s all about the memories”.

People and things can come and go, but memories can stay with you forever!

We’ve created some cherished memories over the years through travel by experiencing memorable moments that really stay with you. Sure we have photographs to look back on, but there are some moments that really stick in your mind.

Recently we were fortunate enough to create some more memorable moments on a 7 night cruise with P&O Pacific Dawn from Brisbane to the Pacific Islands of New Caledonia and Vanuatu.

As a family of four we have really taken to the easy going cruise lifestyle and the experiences you can have both on board the ship during sea days, and the land excursions at ports of call.

We love how you can basically do nothing at all but relax, or you can get involved with the many activities and entertainment available. And of course there is the amazing food.

Below is a collection of photos from moments we will remember most:

1. Sail Away Party

Leaving from Brisbane on a sunny Saturday afternoon, the music was pumping, people were dancing, and the cocktails were flowing in anticipation of the exciting week ahead.

A sign on the side of a building

a woman on a cruise

a man holding a girl on his shoulders

2. Sunsets

We have seen amazing sunsets around the world, and this cruise didn’t let us down.

a man holding a girl on a cruise balcony

woman standing on a cruise balcony during sunset

people standing on a cruise balcony

3. Dining at Salt Grill Restaurant

The Salt Grill is the creation of Australian celebrity chef Luke Mangan. And let me tell you this is a not to be missed experience. The food was AMAZING!

a plate of food
grilled snapper

a plate of food

4. Welcome Aboard Cocktails

We loved this special touch from the friendly and creative staff on board.

drinks on a table

a drink on a table

5. My Home Office

Running a mobile business has its benefits. Including being able to work in locations with spectacular views like this.

a woman working on a computer on a cruise balcony

6. Morning Sunrise Walks

Each morning the top deck of the ship is transformed into a jogging and walking track. No better way to start your day than to walk a few miles in the fresh air with ocean views.

a cruise ship

a woman walking on the top deck of a cruise ship

7. Galley Tour

Meeting the Head Chef Alex from Germany and learning about the process that goes into feeding 2,000 people three times a day was very interesting. It’s an incredible operation with many challenges.

people standing in a large kitchen

multiple plates of desserts in a kitchen

chefs in a kitchen

a man carrying a baby
sneaky glass of champagne

8. The Big Screen

New on Pacific Dawn is a giant screen overlooking the swimming pool. Take your pick, catch a movie, watch a live music concert, or enjoy your footy.

people sitting on lounge chairs
Movie time
a television screen
Sunday football

 9. First Port of Call

After two days at sea everyone was excited to see land again for the first time. Our first port of call was Noumea.

people standing on the balcony of a cruise ship

a woman and baby wearing captain hats

10. Kids Club

Klayra absolutely loved the kids club program. The staff were amazing friendly and professional. And at the end of the cruise they organised a huge concert to put on for all the parents.

children dancing together

11. Swimming on Lifou Island

Bring your snorkel gear or just go for a swim. The water here was very inviting.

a beach

a man and child swimming

12. Views from Lifou Island

A relatively easy climb to the top of a hill provides stunning views such as these.

a woman and her children walking down a mountain

A little girl standing

13. Bridge Tour and Meeting the Captain

Another interesting experience was learning about the technology and what drives the ship and keeps it on course. And of course meeting the Captain is always a nice bonus.

a cruise ship captain in the control room

people and a cruise ship captain standing together

14. Relaxing in the Hot Tub

The kids, and us adults loved this. It was just as enjoyable as it looks.

people in hot tubs on a cruise ship

people in hot tubs

15. Meeting the locals in Vanuatu

This is one of the main reasons we travel. To meet and learn from different cultures. An interaction our one year old daughter Savannah had with a local village girl will stay with us forever.

kids holding hands
Savannah and local village girl

kids high fiving

women holding children

16. Taking a moment in Vanuatu

A person lying on a bench

kids playing in the sand

17. Afternoon Beers

Moments like these don’t happen very often any more and it was something to really look forward to at the end of the day.

a hand holding a bottle of beer

18. Local Beer in Noumea

And of course trying the local beer wherever we go is always on the to do list. We give it a thumbs up!

a glass of beer on a table

19. Thermal Couples Suite

A very welcome retreat for busy parents like us was the opportunity to get some quiet time, enjoy a glass of champaign, and lie on the hot stone bed.

a spa room

a glass of wine on a table

a bathroom in a spa

20. Adults Only Oasis Deck

If you want to get away from the kids on board, this is the place to do it. Grab a sun bed, a book, and a cocktail and enjoy the views.

people lying on lounge chairs on a cruise ship deck

lounge chairs on a cruise ship deck

a woman lying on a lounge chair

21. “Life As We Know It” Show

The entertainment on board was great, especially the all new “Life as we know it” music and dance performance.

people performing on stage

people performing on stage

22. Zumba Class

Caz likes to keep relatively active whilst cruising. And she loves to zumba, as do many we found out.

people doing a dance class

people doing a dance class

23. Formal Night

We don’t get to dress up all that often. And the girls really enjoyed formal night and putting on their pretty dresses.

a girl standing next to bushes

a girl and a toddler standing together

24. Catamaran Cruise around Noumea

This was a relaxing way to experience Noumea. Our host was very informative and humorous and the kids had a lot of fun.

a woman and children wearing life jackets on a boat

a man sitting on the side of a boat

25. Birthdays

It was just one week before Kalyra and Savannah were to celebrate birthdays. And the staff and our host David were very kind to organise a delicious birthday cake for them to share.

a birthday cake with candles

a girl blowing candles out on her birthday cake

26. Champagne Tower

On the last night of the cruise a huge pyramid constructed with champagne glasses is built. Balloons fall from the ceiling, a live band plays, and everyone toasts to an enjoyable week of cruising.

a woman pouring champagne on a glass tower


Which moment would you like to experience?


Disclaimer: Our cruise was courtesy of P&O Cruises Australia. All opinions remain our own.

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20 thoughts on “26 Memorable Moments on P&O Pacific Dawn”

  1. The cruise looks like a great family experience. We live in Brisbane so I have looked into the cruise option a few times.

    Unfortunately the Australian cruise lines do not cater very well for families of five people – I haven’t been able to find any local options for either five person rooms or adjoining cabins… It looks like we will have to go to the USA to get more family friendly options. Or try to tee up family to mind one of our kids, which is also not our preference.

    1. Hi Pretraveller,

      The Pacific Dawn has just had some new additions, including adjoining cabins so you should be good to go with your family of 5 🙂 Here is a link to the Pacific Dawn page on the P&O website which mentions the new additions of the connecting rooms: http://www.pocruises.com.au/ourships/pages/pacificdawn.aspx

      Also, give them a shout out on their Facebook page and I’m sure they could help you further with any questions: http://www.facebook.com/POCruises?ref=ts

  2. This looks like the ultimate family holiday. Something for everyone! Looking forward to popping our cruising cherry in 2013 & definitely looking forward to the Adults Only deck!! Thanks for making it even more enticing 🙂

  3. Oh I love this post and would love to go on a cruise more and more after reading this!

    There are many cruises departing from Dubai going to Europe, Singapore, etc. My husband and I are considering to go in one as it seems less hassle for our smallest guy!

    I’m so loving your blog Caz and Craig!

    1. Thank you Grace! I think cruises are such a great option for families. Parents get a good break on a cruise. Check the age limit for the kids club. It is so handy if your child can go there for a couple of hours each day– they love it

  4. The picture of your sweet adorable Savannah with a local village girl reflects how children can be exemplars of innocence and love. It was a heart-warming scene that such a young girl like yours is already learning diverse cultures of the world through traveling.

  5. Hi
    I’ve just read your blogpost and am thinking of going on this same cruise. We have 2 girls aged 4 and 2 and I’m just wondering how old your children were and if they had a good time.
    Did they have any trouble sleeping on the ship?
    Do you have any suggestions for us?

    1. My girls were 5 and 1. They had an amazing time. Our eldest obviously knew more that was happening, but I think your youngest still absorbed so much. Like this incredible moment https://www.ytravelblog.com/vanuatu-village-savannah-alida/ Made it all worthwhile.

      Just check the age group for the kids club I am pretty sure it is three. Your 4 year old will love the Kids Club, it is so much fun for them. Neither of them had any problems sleeping on the ship. It’s a great family holiday

  6. Hello Caz

    Loved reading your blog and seeing the fantastic photos of your cruise on Pacific Dawn. We are keen cruisers (well I am, husband not so keen) and have been on many cruises, all with P & O but unlike yourselves boarding in Australia we have to start our cruises at Southampton as I do not like flying. Your ports of call looked fabulous particularly the clear blue water and what looked like a deserted island of Vanuatu. Cruising is not for everyone but I love it and it seems once you do one, you either never choose any other holiday, or never step foot on board again.

    I too have done a blog on recent cruises, so please click my name to see my cruise experiences.

    Carry on Cruising



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