Princess Cruises’ smallest ship will be part of its 2020-21 Australian fleet, opening up new itineraries and calls to less-visited ports during its four-month season. The announcement bucks the trend for cruise lines sending increasingly bigger ships down under.

Pacific Princess, which was christened in Australia, is set to sail a 90-day voyage from Sydney to South America, a 21-night cruise to Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, and a 24-nighter to Tokyo via PNG, the Philippines and Japan.

The ship will also make the line’s maiden calls to Kaikoura and New Plymouth in New Zealand, Wewak and Gizo Island in the Solomons and Madang in PNG, as well as its first stop at Stewart Island on a cruise from Australia.

The deployment means Australians will have an unprecedented choice of six locally based Princess ships, from its smallest, the 30,277-tonne, 690-passenger Pacific Princess, to two of its largest -- the 143,700-tonne Majestic Princess and 142,200-tonne Regal Princess, both with capacity for more than 3,500 passengers. Combined with the three others -- Sun Princess, Sea Princess and Sapphire Princess -- Princess Cruises maintains its position as our biggest cruise line (offering almost 25 per cent more beds across the summer than any other cruise line in Australia), with one-third of its global fleet to be based here.

Pacific Princess arrives in its new homeport of Sydney in December 2020, which is the 45th anniversary of Princess Cruises’ first roundtrip cruise from Australia -- a voyage on the original Pacific Princess, which starred in the TV series ‘The Love Boat’. This occasion will be celebrated on the ship’s first cruise of the upcoming local season -- a New Zealand voyage departing December 21, 2020.

Open for sale on Thursday July 11 for Princess Elite members and July 12 to the general public, the new Pacific Princess’ program includes many first-time highlights.

  • A 13-night New Zealand itinerary sees Princess’ first cruise from Australia to Stewart Island, as well as visits to Fiordland National Park, New Plymouth, Kaikoura, Dunedin, Akaroa and Picton. Fares start at $3,199 per person.
  • The 90-day circumnavigation of South America, roundtrip from Sydney, features more than 25 ports and overnight stays in Buenos Aires, Lima and Rio de Janiero at the start of Carnival. Sailing from Sydney on January 3, 2021, the cruise is priced from $22,499 per person twin share with up to $2,000 onboard credit per cabin.
  • The 21-night cruise to PNG and the Solomons, including the Conflict Islands, departs April 3, 2021, with fares from $4,299 per person twin share.

“Pacific Princess was christened in Australia and became a popular favourite amongst Australian cruisers, offering the first premium cruise experience in the region,” said Stuart Allison, Princess Cruises Senior Vice President Asia Pacific. “We can’t wait to welcome her back to our shores and celebrate our 45th anniversary at the same time.”

Pacific Princess has been voted the best small or mid sized ship by Cruise Critic members in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.