With most maritime borders now reopened, the Royal Caribbean’s Ovation of the Seas has officially resumed its summer sailing season in the South Pacific and marked its first call in Vanuatu.
The ship departed Sydney with thousands of Australian and New Zealand passengers aboard, anchored in Vanuatu’s capital Port Vila for the first time in over two and a half years.
“It’s a beautiful harbour town and we have an opportunity in Port Vila to park one of the largest and most beautiful cruise ships in the world and present our ship to your amazing community,” said Gavin Smith, Royal Caribbean’s Vice President and Managing Director for Australia and New Zealand.
They also called in at Vanuatu’s Mystery Island, and as Mr Smith told dignitaries and guests on board, there are plans to visit Luganville – Vanuatu’s second largest city- next year and to also create more personal experiences in other destinations for cruise guests.
“So we feel like we’re in a very exciting time for our organization, carrying many hundreds of thousands of visitors from around the world, around Australia and New Zealand, throughout the South Pacific.”
Royal Caribbean has been sailing the South Pacific for well over a decade and in an official statement, Mr Smith said the resumption of cruising to the region was a testament to the value of Royal Caribbean’s partnership with Vanuatu’s local community and tourism industry.
“This island paradise has proven to be a top holiday choice for our guests, with picture perfect beaches and a warm welcoming community, guests continue to choose Vanuatu as their destination of choice”.
This was mirrored by Vanuatu Tourism Office’s CEO, Adela Issachar Aru.
“Vanuatu has always been one of the top regional cruise destinations in the South Pacific and we have noted a huge demand from international visitors looking to explore Vanuatu via a cruise holiday,” she said.
Royal Caribbean said they have 20 sailings to the South Pacific across both Quantum Class ships this season, with plans to return to Mystery Island, Vanuatu, and Noumea in New Caledonia.
“Travellers can look forward to a range of first-at-sea experiences on board both Quantum Class ships, including indoor sky diving with RipCord® by iFLY®, dodgem cars at the largest indoor active space at sea, SeaPlex, and the FlowRider surf simulator.”
Its other Quantum Class ship, Quantum of the Seas is Royal Caribbean’s latest in the region.