Last night was my last on the ship, and very convivial it was too; drinks at the Observation Lounge on Deck 11 followed by yet another excellent dinner at Compass Rose with Julie and Joanne, my Voyager friends from San Antonio, Texas. A few farewell libations at the Connoisseur Club and then it was off to pack my bags and prepare for a whistlestop tour of Wellington in the morning.

As my time in the country’s cosmopolitan capital city was so short I took the shuttlebus from the port to Lambton Quay and then rode the cable car up the hill to the top of the Botanic Garden. Although it was grey and drizzly (apparently not usual for this time of year), the walk down through the gardens was spectacular. I walked past the distinctive Beehive and Parliament buildings and as I made my back through the city streets to the Aotea Quay I did wonder why there were so many people rushing through the rain in an extraordinary array of fancy dress … and it turns out that the Rugby Sevens were being held at the stadium (just opposite where Voyager was berthed) that afternoon.

While I waited for a taxi to the airport I saw Amit, my lovely butler, decked out in civvies and eagerly anticipating his first shore call of the cruise. As always it was sad to say goodbye to the ship and the lovely people I met on board, but I had a wonderful time and if nothing else, I’ve learned two things on this cruise: always pack a flashlight and a light waterproof jacket! I’ll be writing a full report on the cruise in the June issue of Cruise Passenger magazine: don’t forget to order your copy or subscribe here on the website!