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June May

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About June May

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  • Birthday April 23

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    Brisbane, Australia

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  1. Now I'm home from this cruise, I can comment from my original account! I can now say two things: I've been to New Zealand - Kia Ora to all my new mates there! And that I've cruised with @twangster … although, there were ~4200 other guests and I never knew who any of them were unless we had the good fortune to meet at dinner in the main dining room, or on a shore excursion. I chose this cruise for the Hobbitses - I did the tour out of Tauranga that takes you to Hobbiton. The actual movie set rebuilt for The Hobbit trilogy, in the same spot on the same farm where they filmed the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Then in Wellington, I visited the Weta Works studio, where they did the props and costumes for both trilogies, and are currently working with James Cameron on the next four Avatar movies. Like @twangster, I also visited Mount Victoria, and took in the splendid, if very windy, scenery, and then took a walk to some spots where various scenes in the trilogies were filmed. That was pretty neat. But hands down, the Sounds, particularly Milford Sound, were the most wondrous. It was so still and quiet from my balcony in Milford Sound, I could have been the only person on the earth there. It was an exquisite experience. And I really loved Ovation - for all that she is a honking great ship in the Australian cruise experience, I rarely felt crowded or hemmed in by people. And the crew were pure gold. I'm already planning ahead to another cruise to New Zealand, and it will be Ovation all the way for me!
  2. 2 February 2020 - Ovation of the Seas, sailing to New Zealand from Australia
  3. I'm a little late to this thread, but as a person of Celtic colouring living in Australia, who has travelled through the Caribbean (my sister opined that the "whitest person on the planet" travelling there was nuts!) - here's the Aussie message about sun protection: slip, slop, slap! Slip on a shirt - long sleeved is good Slop on sunscreen - SPF50 is good, SPF15 is a waste of time and money Slap on a hat - not a baseball cap, which will give the back of your neck and your ears zero protection. Go for something with a brim all around. Following these rules, I came back from my cruise with a pretty decent fair person tan! And no sunburn!
  4. +1 on Cape Canaveral/Kennedy Space Center - fascinating place to spend a day.
  5. I've noted your other questions, but this one I can answer right away - yes, the Mystery Dinner Theatre is on offer. Cruise planner price right now is $109 pp but that's Australian $. It works out to about $80 US. I thought about booking it, but I'm already booked for the Chef's Table and figured next time on Explorer I could do the Mystery Dinner Theatre - hope that decision doesn't bite me on the behind!
  6. I'll be onboard Explorer of the Seas in March this year (a month and a day to go, very excited!). Wouldn't call myself an experienced cruiser, as this is only my second ever cruise, but I'm very keen - it's only been almost 2 years since I made my booking! Explorer cruises out of Australia in our summer, and we'll be going to the South Pacific. If there's anything in particular you want to know about, let me know and I'll see what I can find out for you!
  7. This dates back to 2015, but I'm fairly confident it will hold true to this day. My first cruise, I was about to settle down in the champagne bar on Independence, and was perusing the menu of champagne based cocktails. Had just spotted one made with elderflower liqueur when my surly (now-ex) other half griped and grumbled and made me leave. At dinner in the MDR that night, I asked the bartender for "a drink I saw on a menu, I can't remember the name, it had champagne and elderflower liqueur". The ultimate vague drink order! And that's exactly what she brought me, and it was delicious! (Still don't know the name of it!) I think your sister will be fine getting a speciality drink based on champagne/sparkling wine at most of the bars.
  8. Got an email this morning advertising sale prices on drink packages, dining packages etc - so yes, the Black Friday sale does apply here in Australia. May not be exactly the same deals as offered in the US, but there are some savings to be had!
  9. Oh @Tink0110, if you're going to be on Independence, I'd love a shot glass from her. She was my first cruise ship, but I was with a surly (now) ex who didn't get the idea of having a small souvenir from travels! Happy to pay (plus shipping to Australia) - or I can offer an exchange, as I'll be on Explorer in just over 100 days 😁
  10. Certainly true about Australia - as an island nation (but it's a pretty big island!), we have a very unique ecosystem and yes, we're very strict on flora/fauna crossing our border. Guess if I want to sail on an Oasis-class ship, I'll have to do it from the US. Factoring that into my super sweet 60th trip in 2022 as we speak! Great blog, @twangster - RCI should have you on the payroll, given how many people you convince to cruise (more) with these blogs! 🙂
  11. Kennedy Space Centre is brilliant! Hope you have a great time!
  12. Sadly, this was an Australian sailing, and family and intimate partner violence is at appalling levels here. I'm just glad he was arrested as soon as the ship docked.
  13. I don't want to horrify anyone, but I got my Deluxe Drinks + Voom package yesterday on sale for $91.08/day. Granted, that's AUD, but it was around $99AUD/day a few weeks ago, so I grabbed it! That's the price we pay for having a weak dollar against USD at the moment. I did save over $100 on the last pricing, so I'm happy!
  14. Your photos of the low city had me all nostalgic! "I had lunch in that pub!" "That store had the most amazing fine art prints!" "I remember those stairs!" And oh boy, the Funicular is fun! Unless you're not good with heights 😉 I will say that The Plains of Abraham look very different from the time I was there - they were set up for the Rolling Stones concert as part of Festival d'été de Québec. I think it looks better as rolling grass fields! Snowbird migration is totally a thing - there's folks of a certain age, with the means to do so, who never see a Canadian winter!
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