P&O launches biggest season ever with more ships and home ports

More Australian cruisers will be able to board a ship without hopping on a plane, as P&O homeports its five ships around the country.

The ships represent the biggest fleet P&O have ever had in Australia, and allows them to offer 250 itineraries in their 2015-16 program.

Traditionally, Sydney and Brisbane have been the home base for P&O ships, but the line’s two new vessels have created new opportunity to spread its ships to different parts of Australia, according to the line’s chief executive, Ann Sherry.

“With five ships in our fleet we can now meet the growing demand for cruise holidays from around Australia, with extended seasons from existing homeports and the addition of new homeports such as Cairns,” she said.

The 2015/16-program features cruises from Sydney, Cairns, Brisbane, Melbourne, Fremantle, Adelaide, Auckland and Singapore.

The program will kick off on 25 November 2015, when new ships Pacific Eden and Pacific Aria join Pacific Dawn, Pacific Jewel and Pacific Pearl in Sydney Harbour for a five-ship display.

Pacific Eden – Fremantle, Cairns, Singapore

Following the ceremony, Pacific Eden will operate cruises from Fremantle, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Singapore.

Additionally, Eden will offer maiden itineraries from Cairns from September to November 2016.

Itineraries include four seven-night cruises to Papua New Guinea as well as two 10-night cruises to Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.

2015/16 will also be P&O’s record season from Fremantle, with Pacific Eden scheduled to complete 13 cruises from the port between April to July 2016.

Itineraries include a new Indonesia sailing with maiden calls to Jakarta, Probolinggo and Makassar; four P&O SeaBreak cruises; and a new four-night cruise to Western Australia’s regional town, Esperance.

Pacific Eden will also offer a Singapore season from July 2016. The ship will complete five cruises to destinations around Indonesia, Thailand and Cambodia. P&O will make maiden calls in Krabi, Sabang, Ko Chang and Sihanoukville.

Other itineraries for Pacific Eden include five roundtrip cruises from Adelaide plus three four-night P&O SeaBreak cruises for the South Australian city visiting Port Lincoln and Melbourne.

Pacific Aria – Sydney, Brisbane

Pacific Aria will stay on the east side of Australia, operating out of Sydney and Brisbane.

She will join Pacific Dawn in Queensland’s capital for eight months during the 2015/16-season. There she will sail on new cruises, including an 18-night P&O Explorer itinerary visiting Vanuatu, Fiji, Tonga and Samoa. There’s also a seven-night New Year cruise visiting Hamilton Island, Cairns and Willis Island.

Pacific Jewel – Melbourne

During the season, P&O will also hold its first summer sailings from Melbourne. Pacific Jewel will be based out of the Victorian capital from December 2015 to March 2016. There she will sail a 12-night Christmas Melanesian cruise and a New Year cruise visiting the south coast of Australia and Tasmania.

She will also complete three four-night P&O SeaBreak itineraries visiting Kangaroo Island.

Pacific Pearl – Auckland

There’s also the line’s longest Auckland season, with 18 round-trip cruises operating between February to June 2016 on Pacific Pearl. Itineraries include a four-night cruise spending the day in Napier or Bay of Islands; a new 15-night to Fiji, Tonga and the Cook Islands cruise; and a new 10-night round trip circumnavigating New Zealand with a maiden call to Stewart Island.

Pacific Dawn – Brisbane

Pacific Dawn will continue to operate year-round from Brisbane.

The new 2015/16-program goes on sale on 19 August. Fares start from $549* per person quad for share for a three-night P&O SeaBreak. A ten-night island cruise is priced from $1,199* per person quad share.