Radiance of the Seas Cruise Review by jj76b
- Sail Date: January 2018
- Destination: Australia & New Zealand
I was on balcony on deck 7 - I do not recommend it as balcony overlooks canvas awnings covering life boats - decks 8 and 9 seemed better if you wanted to look down at seas.
Having been on many cruises now I do not like the layout of Radiance - its nt a bad ship its just that others are better. If you like to attend quizzes then the Schooner bar on deck 6 has limited space.
The main theatre is good/fine but second space down aft called colony club is small -again other ships have 2 theatres which I prefer.
The cinema is sad - only takes about 100 people and it is a cramped room.
The centrum space on deck 4 is also limited for space so many people gather around inside balconies on deck 5 and 6 to watch shows. Again other ships are better laid out.
Food was fine in Windjammers and also Cascade restaurant - good but again I've had slightly better.
Casino is rubbish - the machines are one's you would have seen in your local pub or RSL some 15 years ago. They are that ancient. Also close to the worst paying machines I've ever experienced.
Didn't go to art auctions this time - just cannot see any value in it.
If you have travelled with Princess you would be horrified with prices to play Bingo. More expensive , less games and prizes seemed less and certainly didn't accumulate to a big dividend on last day.
If you have travelled with RCL before as we had embarkation was very quick - taken to front of lines. Also disembarkation was very smooth and quick.
Tenders ran well in Bay of Islands but after starting well in Akaroa it went to hell in a hand basket for about 2 hours - just chaos - not sure why but it meant that was going to be a 20 minute wait turned into an hour and 10 minutes (not happy Jan!)
Weather - after first 2 days of rough seas by time we got to Milford Sound weather was good but cool and it stayed that way till Bay of Islands where it rained heavily. Trip back to OZ was smooth seas but not much sun.
MiniGolf was fun but didn't see many climbing rock wall.
Seemed to be more pressure from some staff to buy things than I have experienced in past.
I travelled on Radiance a year ago and prices for games shows and quizzes were better - seemed to be doing things on the cheap this time.
Really disappointed there was no Beatles quiz - first time I have experience this in past 14 cruises.
Nearly all the Headline acts were of good to high quality. In no particular order there was:-
Anthony Laffan - comedian and hypnotist - very good and funny
Nathan Foley - singer, dancer, musician - seriously high quality
Sam McCool - comedian - very good and funny
Johnny Balance - comedian, magician, juggler and balancer - amazing - great act
3 Man Band - might have name wrong but gee they were good - outstanding singers.
Paul Martell - impressionist - with wife Jane Scali (ex Johnny Young young talent time - perhaps along with Nathan Foley best act but all listed here were good.
Kelly Monteith - comedian - probably not as good as those above but still OK.
These you would all pay to see.
Diamonds - 3 girl singers - young and shouted into microphones - sang some good songs but missed with many - compared to others listed above were "C" graders.
Sadly the production shows were to of the same standard - piano many show - singers didn't sing well together.
City of Dreams show - when it finished I said what was that all about.
However Tango Buenos Aires show was high quality - dancing outstanding.
Costumes were good and sets also good but choreography left something to be desired except in Tango show. Singers were average compared to other production shows I've experienced.
The various other acts put on a show called Music Showcase and it was just OK - nothing to rave about although the musicians were outstanding.
There must have been a bad outbreak of norovirus before we joined as staff handled all foods and were strict about everyone washing for first 3 days of cruise - perfectly understandable. although waiting 5 minutes to get a piece of toast at breakfast was a tad annoying.
Movies and TV
Selection of movies were current and some shown in main theatre (but repeated too often) - already mentioned cramped cinema.
TV was good as I like Say news so could catch up with local politics each day but also other good channels to cater for most tastes.
Showed excellent coverage of Super Bowl in Sports Bar.
Alcohol prices very competitive but will leave it to others to comment on other shops.
Alcohol prices around ship - are just too expensive - you get better prices at your local pub or RSL
Quizzes - some of the smartest players I've experienced with high scores always the norm and the odd perfect score.
Enrichment lectures - Melva Stone who spoke of her experiences in outback WA was outstanding.
Shore Excursions - having been to NZ several times did my own excursions and always much cheaper than ship.
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Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
AkaroaQuaint - some people go from here to Christchurch - done that but nothing special.View All 161 Akaroa Cruise Port Reviews
Small town with a very distinct French flavour.
There are several tours one can take if you want or you can just walk around town.
This is a tender port so takes some time to get to shore
View Cruise Critic's Akaroa Cruise Port Review
AucklandReminds me a bit of CBD Sydey - sky tower is a must -local buses are cheap and a good way to get around Auckland - aquarium is very interesting as is the yachting museum close to ship.View All 350 Auckland Cruise Port Reviews
Shopping expensive compared to Australia.
Cruising around harbour worth a try as scenery is spectacular.
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Bay of IslandsWow -it rained and it poured and our group got soaked but it was fun - except we are now all coming down with colds.View All 40 Bay of Islands Cruise Port Reviews
Went to Russell which is worth a look. There is a glow worm cave to see but it was out of action due to heavy rain (I'd seen it before).
Town is lovely to walk around and do some shopping,
Treaty grounds are really worth exploring (lots of history) and you may see a Maori exhibition (really good)
View Cruise Critic's Bay of Islands Cruise Port Review
DunedinOne must try to walk up Baldwin street (the steepest street in world) also a tour of Cadburys factor is a must and a train ride - you can do all these yourselves - people very friendly - cafes and restaurants good and reasonably priced - overall a very nice townView All 304 Dunedin Cruise Port Reviews
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Sydney (Australia)Since I live here I didn't take any tours obviously BUT it is the best harbour in world bar noneView All 658 Sydney (Australia) Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Sydney (Australia) Cruise Port Review
TaurangaThis was a long 8+ hour tour across country and the Waitomo Caves are a must see.View All 12,810 Tauranga Cruise Port Reviews
Countryside is pretty and interesting to see inland which you generally don't on a cruise. Also saw KIWI birds at a sanctuary and had lunch at a resort.
You can do this cruise also from Auckland
View Cruise Critic's Tauranga Cruise Port Review
WellingtonRecommend Cable Car and Museum (its free) but lots to see.View All 363 Wellington Cruise Port Reviews
Some nice tours outside Wellington just as 4 wheel driving but many on the expensive side.
Lots to do in town.
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