Sunrise over the Moorea mountains took longer than being at sea since the sun had to climb over the peaks to the south of the hotel. We spent the night at the Hilton Overwater Lagoon Resort in Moorea and will rejoin the ship later today.
As the sky grew brighter and brighter, I saw a small speck on the horizon start to move from right to left. At first it looked as if it were part of the extended shoreline reaching into the sea, but in a few minutes is grew larger and it became clear that it was the Ms Amsterdam headed toward her anchorage in Moorea at Opunohu Bay. We were originally scheduled to anchor in Cook’s Bay, about ¾ of a mile to the east, but the facilities there were under construction. The On Location guide was not changed so it still said we would
We ordered a single room service breakfast – 2 eggs, bacon, toast, potatoes, orange juice and coffee: $36 plus a $17 delivery fee. When the breakfast arrived, via golf cart, we were surprised to see that they had included a massive fruit tray, an equally large tray of pastries as well as bacon and sausage. So while the breakfast was expensive, they certainly didn’t scrimp on portion size.
The internet was very fast early in the morning so I was able to take care of some maintenance on the blog’s hosting website and rearrange some of the pages. You will now notice that there is a new section called “World Cruise Reference” that includes a drop down option for the Itinerary, Menus and On Location guide. Here you will be able to easily see our schedule, complete with arrival and departure times, as well as the menus and On Location guides for that particular day.
Checkout was 11 am and they were unable to grant any extension so we moved to the lobby to enjoy the fast internet and catch up on email and events around the world. One item that is proving more and more invaluable is a portable, rechargeable, wireless access point. This device will receive a WiFi signal, and rebroadcast it under your own SSID and allow multiple computers to share a single WiFi connection. I had purchased an upgraded internet plan from the hotel but it was limited to a single log on. This device allows you to create your own hot spot and share the single log on with both of our laptops and iphones. I will provide more details and specifics about how this works later.
The hotel arranged for a driver to pick us up at 1pm and take us to the Belvedere look out spot and then back to the ship. Since this was a Sunday, most of the shops were closed and many folks we learned later went to some of the hotels to use the internet or buy a facility pass for the day. Since we had spent the previous 24 hours in a hotel, we were ready to head back to the ship after our scenic drive.
Our Driver, Popo, was a joy and provided us a wealth of information and interesting anecdotes. The drive to the lookout was about 30 minutes, steep and with plenty of hairpin turns, but her running commentary made the time fly by. She is semi-retired, and drives her taxi to save money for her next trip and tries to see someplace new each year. Next summer she is looking forward to visiting Alaska.
Once we arrived at the Belvedere lookout, we met Henk and Christel , the Hotel Director and the Guest relations Manager. They are avid cyclists and rode their “Bike Friday” folding tandem to the top of the mountain and the lookout. The climb was fairly steep and climbing hills on a tandem is always a challenge, but they were more than up to the task. They headed down the mountain a few minutes before we did, but they easily beat us to the bottom as a skilled cyclist could easily go faster than our taxi around the tight curves – downhill.
The tender landing had set up a small market to sell items to the tourists, mainly shells, pearls and T shirts. There was a small convenience store open about ¼ away and I walked there to buy some Orangina, a orange flavored soft drink, often hard to find anywhere in the USA and not available on the ship.
Back on the ship, I had 1500 Poly Francs left and the front desk traded them for $15 New Zealand plus $1.25 USD, I suspect the exchange rate is not the best, but the convenience can’t be beat, especially for such a small amount.
The weather for all our all island visits so far remains remarkably pleasant and dry for this time of year. Future world cruisers should definitely have a wet weather plan for all these ports, because they could have easily been raining affairs instead of bright and sunny.
Prime rib was on the menu tonight and was the selection for most of our table. It was outstanding and some of the best prime rib we have enjoyed on any cruise ship. The food in the MDR (main dining room) continues to impress and makes going to the specialty restaurants a tougher choice since the food in the MDR is so good.
Bayne Bacon provided the entertainment tonight – no relation to Debby Bacon in the Piano Bar. He provided an outstanding performance of standup comedy and serious musical numbers on the piano and guitar. Another standing ovation. The entertainment remains very, very good for this cruise.This entry was posted in Uncategorized