Hi Everyone

 Today we were at Mystery Island, a firm favourite for anybody who has travelled around the South Pacific, but it was the first time I had the opportunity to get ashore here for a few years. 

 The centre of Mystery Island is a grass runway which stetches the length of the Island, which is used by small planes to bring in supplies and also the port officials who clear the ship on arrival. 

It appears that there has been rapid expansion because this runway, located between coconut palms and beach, now has a terminal building; sorry guys, no sign of the duty free shop yet!

Traditionally the outrigger was used to access mystery Island from the mainland.

Traditionally the outrigger was used to access mystery Island from the mainland.


Mystery Island Runway

Mystery Island Runway

Mystery Island Airport.

Mystery Island Airport.


Mystery Island Terminal

Mystery Island Terminal

Natalie Gruzlewski with Pacific Dawn's Captain, David Box

Here is a photo of Getaway Presenter Natalie Gruzlewski with Pacific Dawn’s Captain, David Box.

This Thursday night at 7.30pm, Getawayon Channel 9 will feature our very own Pacific Dawn.  You may recall this blog reporting back in May that the Getaway film crew and presenter Natalie Gruzlewski captured the highlights of life on board including the roaming circus performers, the Pirates of the Pacific Show, an interview with Captain David Box and beach cricket at Isle of Pines.

Finally the day has arrived for the program to air and we are very excited.

So on Thursday night, take the phone off the hook and tune in to Channel 9 at 7.30pm as Pacific Dawn takes centre stage.


Pacific Dawn at Sunrise

This is a great photo taken last week of Pacific Dawn passing under the Harbour Bridge as she arrived in Sydney at around 6am.   The photo was taken by one of our Head Office staff members, Bruce Peters, and was so good we thought we would share it with you.

Walk the Decks


I’m Cathy Freeman, Godmother of the Pacific Dawn. I’m really excited about a very special event I’m holding on onboard Pacific Dawn in Sydney on August 14, and I hope you can join me there.

 It’s called Walk the Decks and it marks the launch of a new P&O Cruises’ program to raise money for the Catherine Freeman Foundation, a charity I set up to give indigenous children better health and education opportunities.

Cathy Freeman and Kids on Verandah 

To join in, all you need to do is raise a minimum $100, then put on your best walking shoes and jump onboard Pacific Dawn with me.

 We’ll be doing eight laps around the decks of the ship together and then we’ll enjoy a special three-course lunch in the fantastic Palm Court Restaurant, courtesy of P&O Cruises.

 Everyone will take home a souvenir t-shirt, cap, photograph and certificate to mark the occasion, plus P&O Cruises will give away a Free Cruise to the person who raises the most money (above $500).

 There are only 100 spots available so if you want to find out more just visit http://www.pocruises.com.au/html/pacific_dawn.cfm#events

 It’s going to be great fun – hope you can make it!


Australian Olympian and Pacific Dawn Godmother

CFF Logo

Simon in the tunnels

Hi Everyone

 The Hotel Director’s role encompasses all aspects of the Hotel Operation.  In order to maintain the highest standards of cleanliness on the ship it is sometimes necessary to get into some strange places.  Sometimes a screw-driver is required to dismantle pieces of equipment to check that they are thouroughly clean. 

The problem today was how do you check that the kids climbing frame in the Turtle Cove is perfectly cleaned and sanatised.  Well, there is only one way, get in it. 


Simon on the playmat

After climbing nets, squeeezing through holes, crawling down tubes and sliding down slides I am pleased to report that the area was spotless. 

Simon on the slide

I wonder if the night cleaners have as much fun cleaning it as I had inspecting it?

I’m sorry some of the photos are a litle fuzzy, but I was more focused on the inspection, and generally enjoying myself.


Chapters Book Club

Hello book lovers!

For the months of July & August we’ll be discussing the following books on board:

The Miss Tutti Frutti Contest by Graeme Lay

Silent Predator by Tony Park

New books for September, October & November will be confirmed in coming weeks.

Happy reading. 


Staff Captain Andy Willard, Chief Pilot Captain Patane, and Captain David Box

Staff Captain Andy Willard, Chief Pilot Captain Patane, and Captain David Box


Good Day everyone. My name is David Box, from Anglesey in the UK, and I recently joined the good ship Pacific Dawn as her very fortunate Captain , fulfilling a long held wish to be back  in the southern hemisphere, cruising from Sydney, Australia out into the South Pacific.

And what a pleasure it has been. I have really enjoyed the last 2 months, have met some great passengers, visited some exciting new ports  and l can assure that no Captain could wish for a finer ship or ship’s company.

We have just enjoyed a 28 day cruise out to Tahiti and her islands, Samoa, the Cook Islands, Tonga, Fiji and New Caledonia. The Tahitian Treasures cruise  was a memorable experience and will remain as one of my favourite voyages. 

For the first time in quite a few years Staff Captain Andy Willard and myself were able to don the traditional Lavu Lavus, as presented by the Chief Pilot Captain Patane,  for our arrival and departure in the dramatic port of Pago Pago, American Samoa. They aroused much comment on board but we enjoyed the chance to participate in a local tradition.

 I look forward to welcoming you aboard Pacific Dawn during my tours of duty on board in the next year.


Hello there,

My name is Tom Green and I am the Sports Coordinator onboard Pacific Dawn. Pacific Dawn has been home since March this year and I have been working on cruise ships since October 2007. I love to travel and life at sea means I get to work and see the world at the same time – what a life!

While enjoying all the amazing food onboard our ships, it’s a great idea to stay fit and active while at sea.

Here are some great ideas to get you moving…

  • Enrol in P&O Cruises’ Bootcamp at Sea for an intense workout and great results.
  • Join me for the daily walks/runs around Deck 14.
  • Use the stairs instead of the lifts. Try walking from Deck 5 up to Deck 14 at least once a day!
  • Take part in the beach sport activities at the various South Pacific Island. We play beach cricket, volleyball and tug-of-war.
  • Pacific Dawn’s gym run fitness classes including Spin, pilates, yoga and stretch.

Bootcamp recruits stretch after an intensive workout.


Beach Volleyball at Isle of Pines.


Come and find me onboard if you would like to know what other activities are available on your cruise!


Sports Coordinator

If you have cruised before, you will know that the last formal night is a big celebration to mark the end of a fantastic holiday.

Here comes the parade of Baked Alaskas – a long-time cruising tradition.

Here comes the parade of Baked Alaskas – a long-time cruising tradition.

It is a chance for the crew to get involved too, with a spectacular parade of Baked Alaska desserts and a Champagne Waterfall. (Did you know, there are more than 750 glasses used in the Waterfall!!!)
Pacific Dawn has added its own flair to this cruising tradition by including a laser light show called Vizion.

The spectacular laser light show, Vizion, lights up Pacific Dawn’s atrium.

The spectacular laser light show, Vizion, lights up Pacific Dawn’s atrium.

Kids join in the fun as balloons fall from the ceiling.

Kids join in the fun as balloons fall from the ceiling.

Hope to see you on a cruise with us soon!
Cruise Director

Chapters Book Club

It can be a bit daunting, as a writer, to think that there are groups of people sitting around in someone’s living room picking your book apart in a book club.  So it was with a mixed sense of excitement and trepidation that I accepted a kind offer by P&O Cruises to speak at the first-ever meeting of Chapters Book Club, on board Pacific Dawn.

I was probably the only person on the ship who was thankful that the weather for our second sea day on our cruise to Tahiti was cold and wet, as this was the day the cruise director chose to kick off the book club.

To my great relief about 60 passengers showed up and listened to me talk about my five novels, Far Horizon, Zambezi, African Sky, Safari, and my latest book, Silent Predator.  Silent Predator was the book nominated for discussion during the ship-board book club during this cruise.

I love meeting and talking to people who are as into books as I am, and a few of the passengers who came along have also tried their hand at writing or have a project on the go.

Tony Park with Chapters Book Club fan, Fay.

Tony Park with Chapters Book Club fan, Fay.

To me, the greatest impediments to writing a book are time and place – that is, having enough time and the right place to allow you to take on the task of getting about 120,000 words down on paper.   All my books are set in Africa and what works for me is to spend six months of each year in the African bush, where I do my research and writing on-location, and draw on the natural beauty of the continent for my inspiration.

I was thrilled to learn, when chatting to people from the audience, that one of the ladies who came along was actually finishing off a draft of a novel on the cruise, tapping away on her laptop in her cabin.  Like I always tell people, if you’re not writing because you enjoy it – in this woman’s case it was part of her holiday – then you’re probably doing it for the wrong reasons.

Have you ever thought of writing a book?  If you have, I reckon a long cruise is a perfect place to write – loads of time and no shortage of peace, quiet, and inspiration all at the same time.

Tony Park
Guest author for Chapters Book Club

The BeachGood evening,
Sitting here in my office with a slightly sun burned nose after a spectacular day in Nuku’Alofa. I was lucky enough to have a local friend who took us to this amazing place called D-‘Oholei Beach and Hina’s Cave.
cliff edge

The beach is surrounded by striking cliff formations and caves. The ship has an official tour that takes you there, so I got to experience this day with around 50 of our guests onboard.

A superb local lunch was served on banana bark inside one of the caves.
Banana Bark

This was followed by a local show inside the one of the bigger caves. Truly an astonishing experience well worth the sunburned nose.

Traditional Dancers
Food & Beverage Director
Thomas on the Beach

Hi Everyone

I have just returned from the Cherry Blossom re-union in the Bengal Bar.  What a fantastic party and so brilliant to see so many friends who traveled with us around Asia last year.
Cherry Blossom Reunion 1Cherry Blossom Reunion 2

I think we have approximately one hundred ex blossomers on here at the moment and talking with my counterpart,  Jane, on the Pacific Sun I believe there are currently another thirty on there.  For those of you who traveled with us on that cruise you will not be surprised to learn that there was much laughter as we discussed the tea bag hoarders and the prune shortage.
Cherry Blossom Reunion 3Cherry Blossom Reunion 4

The party was a huge success and it was very moving when P&O received a standing ovation from the passengers for arranging the event.  This really is cruising at its best.
Cherry Blossom Reunion 5Cherry Blossom Reunion 6

Passenger Services Director

Chapters Book Club Logo_FINAL

Hello cruisers!
This cruise marks a new chapter for Pacific Dawn! We are launching Chapters Book Club, P&O Cruises’ first book club at sea. Passengers will be able to get together a few times each cruise to discuss books of past and present.

Tony ParkTo celebrate Chapters, we have guest author, Tony Park, sailing on the current cruise to facilitate the sessions (from Sydney to Tonga). Tony is an Australian author who has five published books with a sixth one out in August. His latest, Silent Predator, is the focus of the book club sessions. Tony spends half the year on safari in Africa, so make sure you share a yarn or two… he has many stories to tell!
Happy Reading, see you at Chapters!
Cruise Director

Tony Park onboard Pacific Dawn – our first Chapters Book Club guest author.

Noumea Port

Bonjour Monsieur et Madame Blog!

I am pleased to tell you that this morning we arrived in Noumea and, despite the slightly overcast weather this afternoon, the passengers have had a fantastic day.

The beautiful port of Noumea was our first stop on this 28 day cruise and as it was Sunday the harbour was busy with a flotilla of small pleasure craft weaving their way between the luxury yachts and our superliner.

Noumean welcoming committeeTri colore flies on Pacific Dawn

Staytuned to the blog as I expect this cruise will turn up some interesting stories as we cruise Tonga, Fiji and Tahiiti.

I’m now off for some local cheese, a glass of vin rouge and a lovely freshly baked baguette!

Bon appetit and au revoir.

Passenger Services Director

PD CrewHi Everyone

My first blog as Passenger Services Director on the Pacific Dawn and there is no shortage of news.

I am sure many of you followed the story of our last cruise to Queensland and back.  On arrival in Sydney we were given a clean bill of health and commended by the NSW health official who had been sailing with us.

Our passenger feedback was overwhelmingly positive and supported by fantastic comments, including:

“We had a wonderful time. P&O Cruises could not have done more to look after us. We haven’t stopped raving and will be booking again.”

“I was unconcerned by the drama, I think I feel better now than when I got on. I’ve been lying in the sun, it was beautiful. Everyone just partied on. That’s what we’re supposed to do on a cruise ship isn’t it?”

“If you had to be quarantined somewhere I couldn’t have thought of a better place… because we got fed, the drinks tasted the same and the staff were fantastic. The majority of people onboard had a good time. They’re obviously disappointed that we missed out on our ports of call, but it was a fantastic trip.”

I know many of you were concerned about our hardworking Pacific Dawn crew during the cruise.  On Monday night, all crew were personally thanked by our CEO Ann Sherry and Captain Box. The Captain, the doctor and I then hosted a BBQ on the outside deck and put on an amazing Asian buffet for all crew. 
PD Captain & Crew Crew then relaxed with a disco held in the Dome.

Dome nightclub

A well deserved moment of relaxation for everyone before we started preparing for our 28 day “Pearls of the Pacific” cruise.

Captain & Bar StaffCaptain & the Bar staff

Speak to you again soon.

Passenger Services Director


Here, the Pacific Dawn crew will share what life is really like onboard.

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