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L'Austral Cruise Review
4.5 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
106 Reviews

Our first romantic, luxury cruise with PONANT

L'Austral Cruise Review by M_Everett

6 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Mar 2015
  • Destination: Asia

My husband and I hadn't done a cruise before and were intimidated by the larger, floating shoe box style ships with an RSL style feel. We wanted to have an intimate cruise experience that was elegant and allowed us to experience destinations that the bigger ships couldn't provide.

We can't speak more highly of our holiday. When the 3 horns sounded as we left Darwin, I felt we were transported back to a time of the 'romantic cruise liner' days. We met other Australian's who shared our same interests which made it easy to have engaging conversations - it was great to learn from other people and hear what they had achieved in their life.

The interpretation between French and English was very exciting. We knew we were travelling with a French cruise line and had read the reviews about translation, but couldn't agree once we experienced it ourselves. It was just another feeling of being on a romantic cruise line voyage.

Their service was impeccable. I loved the recognition after just a short time and the effort that was made to remember how we liked our breakfast, what wine for lunch and dinner, even cocktails at five-zizzies!

The light afternoon gatherings and activities were always great fun. It was a non-pressured way to get to meet some of the other guests. Again, the other passengers were very interesting and we made some great connections with people from around the world.

Our stateroom was absolutely beautiful - lazy afternoons sitting on our balcony, looking out to the passing islands, sunsets and sharing a glass of champagne with my husband. The design of our room was very stylish and tasteful with enough space to feel comfortable to stay in or spend the day out.

One of the highlights was when we stopped at a sandy island and in the distance we could see a strange looking cloud, and then realised it was an active volcano way off in the distance - doubt we would have seen that on a bigger ship!

Overall, we realised that starting our first cruise experience on a luxury cruise ship like PONANT would make it hard to try a different one... but we don't mind at all!

We are going again this year to the Med and can't wait!

M_Everett's Full Rating Summary
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