Princess introducing special ‘Kiwi’ programs for its New Zealand sailings this fall and winter

Once again, Princess is getting creative. This time they are enhancing their upcoming cruises to New Zealand with all kinds of programs.

Now, New Zealand is one of those once-in-a-lifetime trips for most people. It is a long flight to get there, particularly from the East Coast, and it is pricey. And a trip there will often take 2-3 weeks, particularly if you add a pre- or post-stay, which is well worth doing.

Maori performers in New Zealand

So it is really important that the trip be memorable in every way. And its looks as if these Princess Cruises are going to be just that. Take a look at what they are doing:

Princess Cruises will introduce a distinct Kiwi flavor on its upcoming season of cruises to New Zealand, with passengers experiencing a taste of the local cuisine, entertainment and culture as they explore the North and South islands.

Passengers on Sun Princess and Dawn Princess’ New Zealand cruises will be able to feel the spirit of Aotearoa the “Land of the Long White Cloud” throughout their voyage, enjoying features such as Maori dance performances, local cuisine and seminars on the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Fiordland National Park.

The new programs and menus will be featured on 18 New Zealand sailings, beginning on Sun Princess October 13 and starting on Dawn Princess December 8.

“Our goal is for passengers to feel the essence of New Zealand throughout their time onboard,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises executive vice president. “We hope our passengers will gain a deeper understanding of what makes New Zealand so special.”

Highlights of Princess’ New Zealand cultural program include:

New Zealand Cuisine – New Zealand’s cuisine will be a focus on each sailing, with Kiwi dishes marked on the menu with the country’s iconic silver fern. Dinner will include items such as Braised New Zealand Lamb Shanks on Lentil Ragout, while lunch menus will feature the country’s Colonial influence with Fish & Chips and Shepherd’s Pie. Passengers can even start their day with a new breakfast selection – famous NZ Bacon & Egg Pie.

Wine and Beers – Bars will feature local Steinlager and Rheineck beers, while the wine lists will include a selection of New Zealand’s acclaimed wines.

New Zealand Island Night – This festive evening will feature a New Zealand theme, with local food (Lolly Log Cake, for instance) and drink selections (Kiwi Caipirinha among them).

Chef and Bartender Challenge – A new activity debuting on New Zealand sailings, this TV-style challenge features the ship’s chef and bartender facing off in a competition to make two dishes or five drinks with a secret New Zealand ingredient in just 30 minutes.

Enrichment and Education – Destination experts will travel with each ship to give passengers information about ports of call, while a park ranger will provide narration as the ship sails through Fiordland National Park. Princess is also working with Tourism New Zealand to present an onboard exhibit where passengers can learn more about local history and culture.

In Port Cultural Programs – In select New Zealand ports, Maori cultural performers will offer afternoon presentations demonstrating aspects of their culture and heritage. Maori masters will offer workshops in Kapa Haka dance traditions, tiki warrior rituals, Waiata chants, and lessons in Maori language.

Entertainment – While the ships are in port in Tauranga and Auckland, passengers can enjoy performances from local entertainers. Maori bands and other local performers are also being added to the lineup. The ships’ movie and TV screens will be showing films with a local twist, such as the Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Piano as well as NZ documentaries and sporting events.

Additional information about Princess Cruises is available through a professional travel agent, by calling 1-800-PRINCESS, or by visiting the company’s website at

About Cynthia Boal Janssens

Cynthia Boal Janssens is the editor and chief blogger for She is a former national president of the Society of American Travel Writers (SATW). She has sailed on over 40 cruises all over the world.

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