A Princess cruise ship will skip a popular port call and a day of scenic national park cruising in New Zealand this week due to an unplanned hull cleaning that has mysteriously disrupted its 14-day holiday cruise. No explanation as to what prompted the required cleaning was offered to guests.
Coral Princess Needing Hull Cleaning
Guests aboard Princess Cruises’ Coral Princess will miss their port call to Dunedin, New Zealand, and a scenic cruising day in Fiordland National Park after cruise line officials announced the ship must undergo a hull cleaning.
The 2,000-guest ship is less than halfway through a 14-day Australia/New Zealand cruise. It left Auckland, New Zealand, on December 15, spending three at-sea days before calling at Brisbane, Australia, on December 19.
A notice to guests on December 20 said, “Coral Princess must complete unplanned additional hull cleaning in advance of our calls into New Zealand. As a result, we must regretfully cancel our scenic cruising in Fiordland National Park on Friday, 23 December, and our call to Dunedin (Port Chalmers) on Saturday, 24 December.”
It continued: “The cleaning will be performed by divers and will take place off the coast of New Zealand starting the evening of Thursday, 22 December, and is expected to take approximately 24 hours. This will allow us to preserve the majority of our scheduled itinerary and provide you with the best cruise experience possible. During the cleaning period all onboard services will be available, including the boutiques and casino.”
Guests to Miss Popular Fiordland National Park
Fiordland National Park is a highlight of the itinerary. Located on New Zealand’s South Island, the park features the glacier-carved fiords of the Doubtful and Milford sounds. Dunedin is the port for Port Chalmers, where Princess excursions allow guests to sea kayak, take wildlife cruises, and visit Larnach Castle, a 19th century mansion.
Coral Princess is sailing a series of 10- to 14-day Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and Tasmania cruises as well as several short “seacations” between Auckland and Brisbane.
The sailing disrupted by the unplanned hull cleaning is next scheduled to call at Lyttelton (Christchurch), New Zealand on December 25, Wellington, New Zealand, on December 26, Napier, New Zealand, on December 27, and Tauranga, New Zealand, on December 28 before returning to Auckland on December 29.
Coral Princess entered service in 2002 and was refurbished in 2019. The 16-deck ship has 1,000 cabins. Amenities on the ship include Lotus Spa and four specialty dining options: Sabatini’s, Bayou Cafe and Steakhouse, Chef’s Table, and private balcony dining. The ship operates under the Carnival Australia umbrella brand, since Princess Cruises is a Carnival Corporation line.