12 NIGHT NEW ZEALAND CRUISE ADVENTURE STARTS HERE

Sydney , Australia | Milford Sound (Cruising) , New Zealand | Doubtful Sound , New Zealand | Dusky Sound (Cruising) , New Zealand | Dunedin , New Zealand | Akaroa , New Zealand | Auckland , New Zealand | Tauranga , New Zealand | Bay Of Islands , New Zealand | Sydney , Australia

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RADIANCE OF THE SEAS

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YOUR SHIP

RADIANCE OF THE SEAS

RADIANCE OF THE SEAS

OFF THE CHARTS EXPLORATION

A five-course epicurean extravaganza at Chef's Table. A stage-side spectacular of song and dance in City of Dreams. Movies by the pool and mini golf right on deck. Radiance of the Seas® transports you to far-off discoveries on land and at sea.

DAY 1 - Departure Day

Sydney, Australia

DEPARTS:
4:30 PM
WALKING ON

SUNSHINE

Circular Quay is where you'll find the Opera House, museums such as the Art Gallery of NSW and some of the best restaurants in the city. A short walk will take you to the historic George Street district, while top-tier shopping can be found in the historical Queen Victoria Building. A 45-minute ferry ride will take you to the heart of Manly Beach when you cruise from Sydney.

View of the Sydney Opera House, Circular Quay with the Skyline in the distance in Australia
Bondi beach in Sydney, Australia
Boats docked on the pier at Darling Harbour in Sydney, Australia

Circular Quay is where you'll find the Opera House, museums such as the Art Gallery of NSW and some of the best restaurants in the city. A short walk will take you to the historic George Street district, while top-tier shopping can be found in the historical Queen Victoria Building. A 45-minute ferry ride will take you to the heart of Manly Beach when you cruise from Sydney.

View of the Sydney Opera House, Circular Quay with the Skyline in the distance in Australia
Bondi beach in Sydney, Australia
Boats docked on the pier at Darling Harbour in Sydney, Australia
Things To Do

in Sydney

The Sydney Harbour Bridge in Sydney, Australia

Go in Circles

Circular Quay is the perfect place to start exploring Sydney. You can find the Opera House here, and Harbour Bridge is within walking distance. Stride into one of the many walking and pub tours that leave from here. Just 20 minutes away, you can stretch your legs on the iconic Harbour Bridge walk, the first of its kind in the world.

People enjoying Manly beach in Sydney, Australia

Get Manly

Bondi Beach gets all the attention, but Manly Beach in the Northern Beaches is a bit more local. The Corso is lined with shops and restaurants, including local favorite, Hugo's. If surfing is your thing, this is the place to be. The walk from Spit Bridge to Manly is a fantastic way to soak in the city's coastline.

The Gap at Watsons Bay in Sydney, Australia

Walk Watsons

Hop on the ferry or one of the regular buses that go to Watsons Bay to enjoy the scenic hike around South Head. During your journey, you'll enjoy views of Sydney Harbour, North Head, the historic Hornby Lighthouse and, of course, the sapphire-blue Pacific Ocean. The Gap offers breathtaking views of the sea from the rocky cliffside.

A plate of fresh Sydney rock oysters

Local Cuisine

With all the water surrounding you, it's no surprise seafood takes center stage on many plates in the city. Head to Sydney Fish Market for giant Sydney Rock oysters or classic fish and ships. Stop into a local pie shop for a traditional Australian meat pie, or explore Sydney's international side with udon or ramen noodles at a Japanese noodle bar, or seek out shrimp dumplings in Chinatown.

An opal ring displayed on a stone

Shopping

There are plenty of shopping malls in the heart of the city, including Westfield Mall, Pitt Street Mall and the wonderful Queen Victoria Building, which is now a shopping mall featuring top designers. Seek out cutting boards made from local camphor laurel — they're not only beautiful but also have natural antimicrobial properties. During your Sydney cruise vacation, look for jewelry made from opal, the national gemstone of Australia.

INSIDER TIP

Central Sydney is extremely walkable, so take the time to explore the little streets close to Circular Quay.

DAY 2 - AT SEA

CRUISING

CAN'T MISS FAVORITES

LB, Liberty of the Seas, mini golf, fun, family, kids, teens, jumping, revite 2016.

LB, Liberty of the Seas, mini golf, fun, family, kids, teens, jumping, revite 2016.

Things to Do

HM, Harmony of the Seas, wide shot of young girl and young boy, teens, climbing Rock Wall, fun, POV from below, Ultimate Abyss slides on left, decorative photographic ceiling with jellyfish, sea life above,
Rock Climbing Wall

A BOLDER BOULDER

Rise to the occasion and take on the signature Rock Climbing Wall. From beginners to speed climbers, everyone can enjoy an unparalleled view from 40 feet above deck. Included in your fare, no reservation required.

LB, Liberty of the Seas, mini golf, fun, family, kids, teens, jumping, revite 2016.
Mini Golf

ON PAR FOR ADVENTURE

Hit the links on the high seas! Refine your mini-golf game on a green that overlooks a sea of blue. Included in your fare, no reservation required.

DAY 3 - AT SEA

CRUISING

FOR FOODIES

Romaine lettuce tossed with radicchio, herb croutons and cheese. Cruise fine dining at Giovanni's Table Italian restaurant.
Welcoming dining room with special dishes & spectacular wines. Fine dining at the best vacation cruise restaurant Chefs Table

Romaine lettuce tossed with radicchio, herb croutons and cheese. Cruise fine dining at Giovanni's Table Italian restaurant.
Welcoming dining room with special dishes & spectacular wines. Fine dining at the best vacation cruise restaurant Chefs Table

Things to Do

Oven baked almond crusted scallops w/red bell pepper pesto served at Giovanni's Table. Cruise fine dining Italian Restaurant
Giovanni's Table

AL DENTE INDULGENCE

A casual Italian trattoria with indoor and al fresco seating, Giovanni's Table offers rustic dishes with a contemporary flair, including fresh pastas, braised meat dishes and stews.

Lobster & Alaska king crab main entree, served at the Elegant Chefs Table restaurant. One of the best cruise line fine dining
Chef's Table

AS VIP AS CAN BE

Located in an intimate, exclusive spot onboard, this private epicurean experience for a limited number of guests, treats you to a five-course, menu and wine tasting.

DAY 4 - CRUISING

Milford Sound (Cruising), New Zealand

ARRIVES:
8:00 AM
DEPARTS:
9:00 AM
FALL FOR

FJORD BEAUTY

Mountains and waterfalls abound in South Island's Milford Sound, one of New Zealand's top attractions and a site of otherworldly beauty. Called the eighth wonder of the world by Rudyard Kipling, the sound (technically a fjord) is part of Fiordland National Park and the Te Wahipounamu World Heritage Site. Take in the surrounding water on nature on your cruise, passing by green cliffsides and plummeting waterfalls like Lady Elizabeth Bowen Falls.

Landscape view of Fiordland National Park with the mountainside meeting the ocean in New Zealand
A pathway through a naturesque body of water with mountains around in New Zealand
Waterfall cascading down the mountains in Milford Sound, New Zealand

Mountains and waterfalls abound in South Island's Milford Sound, one of New Zealand's top attractions and a site of otherworldly beauty. Called the eighth wonder of the world by Rudyard Kipling, the sound (technically a fjord) is part of Fiordland National Park and the Te Wahipounamu World Heritage Site. Take in the surrounding water on nature on your cruise, passing by green cliffsides and plummeting waterfalls like Lady Elizabeth Bowen Falls.

Landscape view of Fiordland National Park with the mountainside meeting the ocean in New Zealand
A pathway through a naturesque body of water with mountains around in New Zealand
Waterfall cascading down the mountains in Milford Sound, New Zealand
Things To Do

in Milford Sound (Cruising)

Mitre Peak in Fiordland, New Zealand

Fly High

Mitre Peak is one of the iconic mountains of Milford Sound. It's just over a mile high and was named because it resembles the headdress of Christian bishops, called mitres.

A waterfall in Fiordland, New Zealand

Get Down

Get up close and personal Milford Sound — the waterfalls will look massive in your photos from so far below. Check out 530-foot Bowen Falls, which provides power and water to the township. Stirling Falls, at 495 feet, is still three times higher than Niagara Falls.

Seals on the rocks sun bathing in New Zealand

See Seal Rock

Fur seals like to sun themselves on the aptly named Seal Rock, so they're usually easy to spot. In Milford Sound, you'll also have a good chance of seeing penguins and perhaps a pod of dolphins. Whales sometimes come into the fjord, too — watch out for their tail splashes during your cruise.

INSIDER TIP

Plan for rain, but don't worry if you run into showers — the weather can change to sunny in an instant.

DAY 4 - CRUISING

Doubtful Sound, New Zealand

ARRIVES:
1:00 PM
DEPARTS:
2:00 PM
BEAUTY IN

SORROUND SOUND

Also called the Sound of Silence, Doubtful Sound is an immense fjord carved out by glaciers 100,000 years ago — it's three times longer than nearby Milford Sound. The green rainforest of the Fiordland National Park surrounds the sound's many twisting inlets and arms.

View of nature's landscape with mountains and ocean views in Doubtful Sound, New Zealand
Seals sun bathing on a rock in Doubtful Sound, New Zealand
Oyster catchers birds in Doubtful Sound, New Zealand

Also called the Sound of Silence, Doubtful Sound is an immense fjord carved out by glaciers 100,000 years ago — it's three times longer than nearby Milford Sound. The green rainforest of the Fiordland National Park surrounds the sound's many twisting inlets and arms.

View of nature's landscape with mountains and ocean views in Doubtful Sound, New Zealand
Seals sun bathing on a rock in Doubtful Sound, New Zealand
Oyster catchers birds in Doubtful Sound, New Zealand
Things To Do

in Doubtful Sound (Cruising)

The Fiordland Park with views of the water in Doubtful Sound, New Zealand

The Sound of Silence

Doubtful Sound is very remote. The closet towns are on nearby lakes Te Anau and Manapouri, and most visitors to the area come in aboard ships. Take in the vastness of the scenery and the quiet of the fjord.

Dolphins swimming in New Zealand

Wave to Wildlife

Pods of dolphins cruise through Doubtful Sound, along with the occasional whale. Fur seals, penguins and several varieties of birds such as puffins also call this area home. Watch for splashes in the water and puffs of mist, which show where the cetaceans have surfaced and taken a breath.

A rainbow shining over a waterfall in New Zealand

Watch for Waterfalls

Thanks to the more than 200 days of rainfall every year in Fiordland National Park, Doubtful Sound has plenty of waterfalls to admire. You might even see a rainbow when the sun comes out during your Doubtful Sound cruise. Helena Falls in Deep Cove is particularly spectacular after a heavy rain.

INSIDER TIP

It will likely be a bit chilly, so bundle up when you're out watching the scenery and looking for wildlife.

DAY 4 - CRUISING

Dusky Sound (Cruising), New Zealand

ARRIVES:
4:00 PM
DEPARTS:
5:00 PM
SOUND THE

EXPLORER'S CALL

Dusky Sound is beautiful and quiet; it can only be reached by air or sea. The area was once a whaling ground for southern right whales — cruising to Preservation Inlet is one of the only ways to see them, as well as humpbacks and what some consider the cutest penguin, the Fiordland Crested Penguin.

Beautiful turquoise creek with snowy peaks near the Milford highway in Dusky Sound, New Zealand
Fur seals laying on a big rock in New Zealand
Beautiful landscape with mountains and wild flowers in Dusky Sound, New Zealand

Dusky Sound is beautiful and quiet; it can only be reached by air or sea. The area was once a whaling ground for southern right whales — cruising to Preservation Inlet is one of the only ways to see them, as well as humpbacks and what some consider the cutest penguin, the Fiordland Crested Penguin.

Beautiful turquoise creek with snowy peaks near the Milford highway in Dusky Sound, New Zealand
Fur seals laying on a big rock in New Zealand
Beautiful landscape with mountains and wild flowers in Dusky Sound, New Zealand
Things To Do

in Dusky Sound (Cruising)

Falls Creek with a waterfall flowing over the mountain in the National Fiordland Park, New Zealand

Make a Resolution

Resolution Island, to the north of Dusky Sound's mouth, protects the fjord. It's the largest island in Fiordland and the seventh largest in the country. Its Five Fingers Peninsula stretches out into the protected Taumoana Marine Reserve. You'll also likely sail by Acheron Passage, which connects Dusky Sound with the calm Breaksea Sound. Watch for the plentiful waterfalls in the Wet Jacket Arm of the Bowen Channel.

View of the terrain in Routerburn in  New Zealand

Spot the Track

After crossing the Southern Ocean, Captain Cook and his crew rested and made repairs in Dusky Sound at Pickersgill Harbour. In order to get a star reading, his astronomer had trees felled — you can still see this spot, called Astronomer's Point today.

Fiordland crested penguins on the coast of New Zealand

Fiordland Penguins

Keep your eye out for the black and white flightless birds with your Dusky Sound cruise. Dusky Sound is a breeding area for Fiordland crested penguins. It's a medium-sized penguin with yellow-striped "eyebrows" that extend out from their heads somewhat comically (look for souvenir penguins in toy shops). The timid birds are classified as endangered and love to feed on squid.

INSIDER TIP

Preservation Inlet is your most likely spot to see southern right whales and humpbacks.

DAY 5 - DOCKED

Dunedin, New Zealand

ARRIVES:
8:00 AM
DEPARTS:
6:00 PM

KIWI, CASTLES & CATHEDRALS

Embrace the Scottish heritage and natural grandeur of Dunedin. Explore the Gothic architecture and gorgeous gardens at Larnach Castle, or get to know the vibrant town by wandering the Dunedin Street Art Trail. Then, head out on the Otago Peninsula: Spot yellow-eyed penguins at Penguin Place, a conservation area dedicated to this rare species. Or climb rocks and dive caves at tranquil Long Beach.

The coastal landscape in Dunedin, New Zealand
The Octagon in the center of Dunedin, New Zealand with views of St. Paul's Cathedral
Views towards the city from the lookout at the Centennial Memorial on Signal Hill in Dunedin, New Zealand

Embrace the Scottish heritage and natural grandeur of Dunedin. Explore the Gothic architecture and gorgeous gardens at Larnach Castle, or get to know the vibrant town by wandering the Dunedin Street Art Trail. Then, head out on the Otago Peninsula: Spot yellow-eyed penguins at Penguin Place, a conservation area dedicated to this rare species. Or climb rocks and dive caves at tranquil Long Beach.

The coastal landscape in Dunedin, New Zealand
The Octagon in the center of Dunedin, New Zealand with views of St. Paul's Cathedral
Views towards the city from the lookout at the Centennial Memorial on Signal Hill in Dunedin, New Zealand
Things To Do

in Dunedin

Pair of Black-browed albatross sitting on the cliff with dark blue water in the background on Falkland island near Dunedin, New Zealand

Big Bird

In the bird world, the albatross is big, with the longest wingspan of any bird. At the Royal Albatross Centre at Taiaroa Head, the world's only mainland breeding colony, see fluffy chicks, giant adults and every stage in between. Walk through the underground tunnels to the Observatory, and tour the McMillan Gallery, which provides information about the area's history and wildlife.

Penguins sitting on a rock near the water in Dunedin, New Zealand

Little Bird

The smallest penguin in the world, the little blue penguin, and its endangered cousin the yellow-eyed penguin nest on the beaches of the Otago Peninsula, a half hour's drive from Dunedin. Take a tour to see them — you'll likely spot seals, sea lions and dolphins, too. See penguins from the water onboard a tour boat, or view their nesting area from atop a hill.

The Larnach Castle in Dunedin, New Zealand

Scotland Down Under

Larnach Castle is the only castle in New Zealand. Built in 1871 for an Australian banker of Scottish descent who spared no expense, the castle was purchased and restored in 1967. Cruise to Dunedin to explore the Gothic Revival architecture, sit for afternoon tea, and wander the seven acres of gardens and the native plant trail.

Lamb chops with vegetables served over a white plate

Local Cuisine

Thanks to the Good Food Dunedin initiative, Dunedin is a "thriving and sustainable food city." Fuel up for the day with bacon, poached eggs and Cumberland black sausage — a long, curvy sausage with lots of spices and herbs — at trendy Vogel St. Kitchen. Or savor the top-notch local beef and lamb: Try dishes like lamb rump with mint pesto or braised beef cheek.

A greenstone pendant necklace

Shopping

Dunedin has a reputation as a fashion shopping destination. You'll find plenty of New Zealand designers so you can bring home something unique to wear. Most shops are near George and Princes Streets. The Little Rock Shop has crystal jewelry and New Zealand greenstone pendants. Befitting Little Edinburgh, the Scottish Shop has kilts, tartans and Celtic jewelry. Nearby are several vintage clothing and bookshops, too.

INSIDER TIP

You will need to purchase a tour if you want to visit the albatross colony.

DAY 6 - TENDERED

Akaroa, New Zealand

ARRIVES:
8:00 AM
DEPARTS:
6:00 PM
FRENCH VILLAGE,

NEW ZEALAND-STYLE

Start your Akaroa adventure by exploring the small village, with its French-inspired cottages and quaint cafes — stave off hunger with some locally produced cheese and a crisp white wine from a regional vineyard. Then, head to Akaroa Harbour to swim with dolphins or see the local seal colony. Or check out the six-sided wooden Akaroa Lighthouse, and take in the views of the bay and surrounding hills.

View of the mountains and lush landscape in Akaroa, New Zealand
Colorful houses along the mountains in Akaroa, New Zealand
Mountain village on Banks Peninsula in New Zealand

Start your Akaroa adventure by exploring the small village, with its French-inspired cottages and quaint cafes — stave off hunger with some locally produced cheese and a crisp white wine from a regional vineyard. Then, head to Akaroa Harbour to swim with dolphins or see the local seal colony. Or check out the six-sided wooden Akaroa Lighthouse, and take in the views of the bay and surrounding hills.

View of the mountains and lush landscape in Akaroa, New Zealand
Colorful houses along the mountains in Akaroa, New Zealand
Mountain village on Banks Peninsula in New Zealand
Things To Do

in Akaroa

Hector's dolphins swimming in the ocean of New Zealand

Find Hector's Dolphins

Hector's dolphins are native to New Zealand — you'll see them nowhere else in the world. To see them, book a tour of Akaroa Harbour on a catamaran or a six-sailed ketch, or get out on the water in a kayak. You'll likely see penguins and seals on your trip too.

Alpaca's in Akaroa, New Zealand

Meet Cute Alpacas

Shamarra Alpacas Farm has a host of fluffy alpacas and a wide field that overlooks Akaroa Harbour. Get up close to take photos of their friendly faces, and later, handle their ultra-soft fleece. There's a shop if you want to buy something to keep you warm in New Zealand's ever-changing weather.

A couple on an organic wine takamutua tasting in the vineyards of New Zealand

Takamutua Tasting

Sample organic wines at Akaroa Winery with views out to the Akaroa Inlet. Here, the winemakers practice sustainable growing and production techniques. Many of their wines resemble fruit-dominant California vintages and are very age-worthy. Top wines are a Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir; sample their Chardonnay, Reisling and Gewurtztraminer, too.

Braised short ribs with vegetables

Local Cuisine

In keeping with its character, Akaroa offers a wealth of French-inspired eats. Fill up with a ham and gruyere croissant from a bakery in the town center before you start your day's adventure. For dinner, tuck into locally raised beef short ribs served with sweetbreads, baby carrots and truffle jus. Or head to Akaroa Fish and Chips for their namesake dish — they're well-known as one of the best fish-and-chip shops around.

A collection of jewelry made of New Zealand's paua shells

Shopping

Arts and crafts are the thing to shop for in Akaroa. Little River Gallery has great selections. Pick up jewelry made from New Zealand greenstone or paua shell is available at Fire & Ice, or take home an unset stone from Hettie's Rock and Crystal Shop. Jump onboard a Akaroa cruise and look for products made from local Alpaca wool or clothing made with traditional Maori designs.

INSIDER TIP

A dolphin excursion aboard a sailboat or kayak means a great experience even if the dolphins are shy that day.

DAY 7 - AT SEA

CRUISING

SHOW STOPPERS

Entertainment, Jazz Bar, lounge, Bar, conversation, friends, drink, wine, socialize, live, music, jazz, stage, musician, Oasis of the Seas, OA, Oasis Class, Allure of the Seas

Entertainment, Jazz Bar, lounge, Bar, conversation, friends, drink, wine, socialize, live, music, jazz, stage, musician, Oasis of the Seas, OA, Oasis Class, Allure of the Seas

Things to Do

Two couples at Music Hall on QN, nightlife, live music, night time, entertainment, adults on stairway at Music Hall, band playing in background
Live bands

THEY'RE PLAYING YOUR SONG

Pick the genre you please and you're likely to find a band of talented musicians onboard to match, from live jazz to cover bands, quartets, Latin, and acoustic performers across the fleet nightly.

Mystery Dinner Theater

DINNER AND A MYSTERY

Reserve your spot at this funny dinner whodunnit starring our professional cast of highly suspicious characters— and you. Will you be the first to solve the murder?

DAY 8 - DOCKED

Auckland, New Zealand

ARRIVES:
8:00 AM
DEPARTS:
6:00 PM
GET INTO A

(LAVA) FLOW STATE

Start your adventure in downtown Auckland. Pop into one of the many hip cafes for a flat white (the local latte) and muesli, a blend of oats, nuts and dried fruit served with yogurt and honey. Then, stroll the waterfront at Viaduct Basin and admire the yachts — Auckland has more boats per capita than any other city in the world — or set out for a sail yourself. Walk 45 minutes (or take the hop-on-hop-off bus) up to the Auckland Museum for bonus harbor views.

View of Piha Beach in New Zealand
View of the Auckland, New Zealand cityscape
The shore of Milford Beach in New Zealand

Start your adventure in downtown Auckland. Pop into one of the many hip cafes for a flat white (the local latte) and muesli, a blend of oats, nuts and dried fruit served with yogurt and honey. Then, stroll the waterfront at Viaduct Basin and admire the yachts — Auckland has more boats per capita than any other city in the world — or set out for a sail yourself. Walk 45 minutes (or take the hop-on-hop-off bus) up to the Auckland Museum for bonus harbor views.

View of Piha Beach in New Zealand
View of the Auckland, New Zealand cityscape
The shore of Milford Beach in New Zealand
Things To Do

in Auckland

View of Auckland, New Zealand from Mount Eden

Adventure of a Lavatime

Auckland has 48 volcanic cones, including Rangitoto island, a 25-minute ferry from downtown. Mount Eden, the tallest volcano, has three craters and the remains of a Maori settlement. One Tree Hill has a monument to Auckland's founding father.

View of Auckland, New Zealand from Mount Eden

Taonga of the Maori

Visit the Auckland Museum, perched on another volcano, to learn about the history, culture and treasures (taonga) of the Maori. A Maori cultural performance takes place several times daily concluding with a very loud haka, the traditional version of the dance the local All Blacks rugby team uses to intimidate opponents.

A person bungy jumping from the Harbour Bridge

Adrenaline Junkies

New Zealand is famous for adrenaline-boosting activities like bungee jumping and Zorbing. During your New Zealand cruise, get a rush by climbing the Auckland Harbour Bridge, then bungee-jump off it. Walk the outside of the 630-foot-tall Sky Tower. You can even base jump all the way down, flying for 11 seconds at more than 50 miles per hour.

A plate full of New Zealand green mussels

Local Cuisine

With the world's highest coffee roasters per capita, New Zealand is all about cafe culture. Though it's debated whether it was invented by Australians or Kiwis, drink a flat white while the kids have a fluffy, foamed milk with chocolate and marshmallow treats. Cruise to Auckland and seek out a hip farm-to-table spot for pastured-raised lamb roast, or feast on whitebait fritters or green-lipped mussels at a waterfront seafood spot.

A jar of Manuka honey

Shopping

Souvenirs with New Zealand's unofficial emblem, the silver fern, are popular; rugby fans will want one in the form of All Blacks' paraphernalia. Pick up some raw Manuka honey; many believe it has medicinal benefits. Kids young and young at heart will love anything with a kiwi bird on it.

INSIDER TIP

New Zealanders reserve tipping for exceptional service. If you do tip, round up or aim for about 10 percent.

DAY 9 - DOCKED

Tauranga, New Zealand

ARRIVES:
8:00 AM
DEPARTS:
6:00 PM
WELCOME TO

MIDDLE EARTH

Start your Tauranga adventure at Mount Maunganui — hike to the extinct volcano's summit for panoramic views. Then, stroll the footbridge from the main beach at Maunganui to Leisure Island, also called Moturiki, where famous blowholes erupt. Take the 45-minute drive to Hobbiton to live like you're "Lord of the Rings" character. Or visit McLaren Falls Park, where you can trek past exotic flora to see the crashing waterfall.

Panoramic coastal view of the beach and resorts in Tauranga, New Zealand
Mount Maunganui in New Zealand
View of the ocean from Mount Maunganui

Start your Tauranga adventure at Mount Maunganui — hike to the extinct volcano's summit for panoramic views. Then, stroll the footbridge from the main beach at Maunganui to Leisure Island, also called Moturiki, where famous blowholes erupt. Take the 45-minute drive to Hobbiton to live like you're "Lord of the Rings" character. Or visit McLaren Falls Park, where you can trek past exotic flora to see the crashing waterfall.

Panoramic coastal view of the beach and resorts in Tauranga, New Zealand
Mount Maunganui in New Zealand
View of the ocean from Mount Maunganui
Things To Do

in Tauranga

A Hobbit home from a famous movie set

Hole Up in Hobbiton

Take an excursion to Middle Earth, or at least to the filming location of Bilbo's house in the Shire. Visit the 44 Hobbit Holes and The Green Dragon Inn to learn more about how "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings" were filmed here by New Zealander Sir Peter Jackson.

A walking path up Mount Maunganui

Climb a Volcano

If you're hungry for a hike, head to Mount Maunganui. Hike 30 minutes or so up one of the trails to the summit, where there's an archaeological site of a Maori fort, as well as excellent views of the beach, Pacific Ocean and the harbor.

Geothermal pool in New Zealand

Geothermal Wonders

In nearby Rotorura, visit a geothermal park like Wai-O-Tapu to see boiling mud, brightly colored pools of hot water and the Lady Knox geyser. Stroll through Rotorura's city parks to see smaller pools of bubbling mud and steaming water, or visit the Polynesian Spa for a hot-water massage.

Grilled lamb on a white plate with roasted vegetables

Local Cuisine

Named the Bay of Plenty by Captain Cook, the Tauranga area has an abundance of products from the land and sea. Cruise to Tauranga and try lamb belly with burnt pumpkin or crusted local venison loin at a hip brasserie in downtown Tauranga. You'll find wine here, too, especially Pinot Noir — Mills Reef Winery has an on-site restaurant where you can order creative, Asian-inspired dishes alongside your glass of choice.

A jar of manuka honey

Shopping

In the town of Paengaroa, about a half hour away, you'll find the production plant of Comvita, one of the world's leading producers of manuka honey. Take a couple jars home, or pick up beauty products made with the sweet stuff. Take home a bottle of your favorite wine from a local vineyard, or seek out local jade and sterling silver jewelry — Jens Hansen Ringmakers in Nelson even makes a replica of the One Ring from Tolkien's epic.

INSIDER TIP

Walk out to Moturiki Island at low tide to get the easiest access to view of the blowholes.

DAY 10 - TENDERED

Bay Of Islands, New Zealand

ARRIVES:
8:00 AM
DEPARTS:
5:00 PM
NEW ZEALAND'S

BAY OF BLUE

Sail through the Hole in the Rock, where you can spot friendly bottlenose dolphins and maybe even dip into the water to swim with them. Or head across the water from Paihia to Russell, New Zealand's first capital city: Take the 30-minute loop walk up to Flagstaff Hill, and pop into Russell Museum to learn more about the old capital's sailing history.

View of the ocean shore from the mountains in Bay of Islands, New Zealand
Traditional Maori canoe house at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, New Zealand
View of the ocean and landscape near Paihia Bay Islands in New Zealand

Sail through the Hole in the Rock, where you can spot friendly bottlenose dolphins and maybe even dip into the water to swim with them. Or head across the water from Paihia to Russell, New Zealand's first capital city: Take the 30-minute loop walk up to Flagstaff Hill, and pop into Russell Museum to learn more about the old capital's sailing history.

View of the ocean shore from the mountains in Bay of Islands, New Zealand
Traditional Maori canoe house at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, New Zealand
View of the ocean and landscape near Paihia Bay Islands in New Zealand
Things To Do

in Bay Of Islands

Hole in the rock in Bay of Islands, New Zealand

The Hole in the Rock

Take a day trip to explore the bay and its pretty islands from close up, capped off with a trip through the Hole in the Rock. Carved by the sea and weather, the hole is 240 feet wide, though looks a lot smaller when you're heading toward it on your day-trip boat at speed. If conditions are right, don a wetsuit and jump in to swim with the bottlenose dolphins.

Close up of a maori canoe at Waitangi Treaty Grounds in New Zealand

Wander Waitangi

New Zealand became a nation here, with the signing of the Waitangi Treaty between the Maori and the British in 1840. Visit the on-site Te Kongahu Museum and the intricately carved meeting house which often has Maori cultural performances. The largest Maori ceremonial war canoe in the world is here.

Paragliding through the mountains and bay in Bay of Islands, New Zealand

Fly Through the Sky

Judge if the sky is really the world's second-bluest via a parasailing trip to see the Bay of Islands from above with your cruise. Can you count all 144 islands? For a more adrenaline-soaked trip (though you're aiming to land away from the water) try tandem skydiving with an instructor.

Grilled whole red snapper with lemons and dill

Local Cuisine

Takeaway fish and chips is the perfect thing to eat near the water — the local style is whitefish fried crispy after a dip in batter, but you may see them frying up someone's catch of the day, too. In Russell, you'll find upscale spots serving bistro fare like local Hawkes Bay lamb, Northland pork and whole snapper.

Shopping for jade carving necklaces in Bay of Islands, New Zealand

Shopping

Look for New Zealand giftware like bone and jade carvings and handicrafts made from ancient kauri wood. The wood is from prehistoric trees found only on the top half of the North Island. The wood has been preserved for centuries in peat swamps and has an iridescent sheen.

INSIDER TIP

Have your camera ready — dolphins are known to appear out of the blue.

DAY 11 - AT SEA

CRUISING

LIGHTS OUT NIGHTS OUT

VY, Voyager, revite, public rooms, revitalization, Schooner Bar, bar, restaurant, dining, drinks,
Quill & compass, pub, promenade, bar,  radiance of the seas, RD, guitar player, entertainment, onboard activity, lounge, bartender, revitalization, english pub

VY, Voyager, revite, public rooms, revitalization, Schooner Bar, bar, restaurant, dining, drinks,
Quill & compass, pub, promenade, bar,  radiance of the seas, RD, guitar player, entertainment, onboard activity, lounge, bartender, revitalization, english pub

Things to Do

QN, Quantum of the Seas, public spaces, Schooner Bar, piano, entertainment, lounge, dining, drinks
Schooner Bar

THE SCHOONER THE BETTER

There's always a crowd gathered around the piano at The Schooner Bar, one of our signature bars and a guest favorite. Drop by to take in the nautical theme, and stay to join in with the piano sing-alongs while enjoying your favorite cocktail.

onboard or on board,  bar,  people drinking alcoholic drinks in onboard or on board Wig & Gavel; Gavel Pub,  mariner of the seas, voyager class, MA
English Pub

PINTS AND POURS FOR EVERY SHORE

Meet your mates for a pint. This is an authentic English spot to enjoy British racing decor while you sip UK-inspired cocktails, scotch, whiskeys and ales, of course.

DAY 12 - AT SEA

CRUISING

CAN'T MISS FAVORITES

LB, Liberty of the Seas, mini golf, fun, family, kids, teens, jumping, revite 2016.

LB, Liberty of the Seas, mini golf, fun, family, kids, teens, jumping, revite 2016.

Things to Do

HM, Harmony of the Seas, wide shot of young girl and young boy, teens, climbing Rock Wall, fun, POV from below, Ultimate Abyss slides on left, decorative photographic ceiling with jellyfish, sea life above,
Rock Climbing Wall

A BOLDER BOULDER

Rise to the occasion and take on the signature Rock Climbing Wall. From beginners to speed climbers, everyone can enjoy an unparalleled view from 40 feet above deck. Included in your fare, no reservation required.

LB, Liberty of the Seas, mini golf, fun, family, kids, teens, jumping, revite 2016.
Mini Golf

ON PAR FOR ADVENTURE

Hit the links on the high seas! Refine your mini-golf game on a green that overlooks a sea of blue. Included in your fare, no reservation required.

DAY 13 - Arrival Day

Sydney, Australia

ARRIVES:
6:30 AM
WALKING ON

SUNSHINE

The Blue Mountains, just an hour west of central Sydney, feel like they're world away from the hustle and bustle of the city. With more than 1 million hectares of forests, cliffs, canyons, caves and waterfalls — and plenty of walking paths to take you there — this is one of the best day trips Sydney has to offer. Quaint towns such as Katoomba stand in stark contrast to iconic landmarks such as the Three Sisters, the towering rock formation overlooking the valley.

Aerial view of Double Bay in Sydney, Australia
A coastal walkway near Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia

The Blue Mountains, just an hour west of central Sydney, feel like they're world away from the hustle and bustle of the city. With more than 1 million hectares of forests, cliffs, canyons, caves and waterfalls — and plenty of walking paths to take you there — this is one of the best day trips Sydney has to offer. Quaint towns such as Katoomba stand in stark contrast to iconic landmarks such as the Three Sisters, the towering rock formation overlooking the valley.

Aerial view of Double Bay in Sydney, Australia
A coastal walkway near Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia
Things To Do

in Sydney

The Sydney Harbour Bridge in Sydney, Australia

Go in Circles

Circular Quay is the perfect place to start exploring Sydney. You can find the Opera House here, and Harbour Bridge is within walking distance. Stride into one of the many walking and pub tours that leave from here. Just 20 minutes away, you can stretch your legs on the iconic Harbour Bridge walk, the first of its kind in the world.

People enjoying Manly beach in Sydney, Australia

Get Manly

Bondi Beach gets all the attention, but Manly Beach in the Northern Beaches is a bit more local. The Corso is lined with shops and restaurants, including local favorite, Hugo's. If surfing is your thing, this is the place to be. The walk from Spit Bridge to Manly is a fantastic way to soak in the city's coastline.

The Gap at Watsons Bay in Sydney, Australia

Walk Watsons

Hop on the ferry or one of the regular buses that go to Watsons Bay to enjoy the scenic hike around South Head. During your journey, you'll enjoy views of Sydney Harbour, North Head, the historic Hornby Lighthouse and, of course, the sapphire-blue Pacific Ocean. The Gap offers breathtaking views of the sea from the rocky cliffside.

A plate of fresh Sydney rock oysters

Local Cuisine

With all the water surrounding you, it's no surprise seafood takes center stage on many plates in the city. Head to Sydney Fish Market for giant Sydney Rock oysters or classic fish and ships. Stop into a local pie shop for a traditional Australian meat pie, or explore Sydney's international side with udon or ramen noodles at a Japanese noodle bar, or seek out shrimp dumplings in Chinatown.

An opal ring displayed on a stone

Shopping

There are plenty of shopping malls in the heart of the city, including Westfield Mall, Pitt Street Mall and the wonderful Queen Victoria Building, which is now a shopping mall featuring top designers. Seek out cutting boards made from local camphor laurel — they're not only beautiful but also have natural antimicrobial properties. During your Sydney cruise vacation, look for jewelry made from opal, the national gemstone of Australia.

INSIDER TIP

There are a surprising number of interesting museums in Sydney, including the Maritime Museum, which explores the seafaring history of the city.

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