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With 15 different cruise ships and 23 separate visits the 2015/16 cruise season looks like being one of the most popular ever at Outer Harbor and along the city beaches. And for the first time ever, Outer Harbor welcomes the mega-liner Explorer of the Seas along with Pacific Jewel, Superstar Virgo and the Queen Elizabeth, all whom are making their first visits into South Australian waters.
Diamond Princess (11 November)
Launched in 2004 the Diamond Princess originally cost US $500m to build and is one of only two Princess Cruise ships to be built in Japan.
Radiance of the Seas (12 November)
Radiance of the Seas was built in Germany, has a gross weight of 90,000 tonnes and was the first cruise ship to feature billiard tables that were stabilised by a computer to prevent rocking movements.
Built in 1993, Pacific Eden is fresh from a refit and rebadging from Statendam before hitting Adelaide seven times during this cruise ship season.
Superstar Virgo (3 December)
The Superstar Virgo is another first timer to Adelaide and with it comes 268m of ship, a draft of 7.9m, a depth of 11.5m and a top speed of 47 kmh. After a renovation in 2009 this ship now has a mahjong room, a Confucianism prayer room and a 100m waterslide on board.
One of the oldest ships to visit this season is the Astor which was originally launched in 1986. The Astor is remembered as being the cruise ship that was subject to an attempted pirate attack during 2008 when cruising the Gulf of Oman.
Pacific Jewel (4 January)
Now part of the P&O Australia fleet the Pacific Jewel heads to Adelaide in January still glowing from an appearance on Neighbours during 2010. With a gross weight of 70,000 tonnes and a length of 245m this ship will help fill Outer Harbor at the start of 2016.
Golden Princess (8 January)
The Golden Princess is one of the larger visitors to Adelaide complete with a 9 hole mini golf course, an outdoor movie venue and an indoor theatre that can seat a 1,000 people.
Pacific Venus (27-28 January)
First launched in 1998 the Pacific Venus is the second largest cruise ship registered in Japan. Catering primarily for the Japanese market the ship is immaculate in terms of quality, fittings and cuisine.
The oldest of the ships to visit is the Albatros which will be celebrating its 43rd year on the seas when it arrives in Adelaide. Previously known as the Norwegian Star and the Crown, the Albatros is fast becoming a regular in Adelaide.
Queen Elizabeth (16 February)
In what is expected to be a huge day Queen Elizabeth arrives in Adelaide complete with 16 decks, 2,500 passengers and 294m of ship. Just over 5 years old the Queen Elizabeth is a newer version of the two previous Queen Elizabeth cruise ships while still retaining the original 20th century décor, style and service.
At 315m in length the Celebrity Solstice arrives complete with a live grass lawn on the upper deck between the ship's funnels.
Radiance of the Seas (7 March)
Refer to the earlier listing in November.
Diamond Princess (27 March)
Refer to the earlier listing in November.
Dawn Princess (31 March)
Holding 2,000 passengers and 920 crew the Dawn Princess has a gross weight of 77,000 tonnes. The ship was refit in 2009 and now features an adults-only private sunbathing area at the front of the ship.
Pacific Eden (formerly Statendam) (21, 25 and 28 March, 1, 4 and 8 April)
Refer to the earlier listing in November for the return of Pacific Eden for a series of Autumn trips based out of Adelaide.
Sea Princess (19 May)
Based in Brisbane and servicing primarily the east coast of Australia, the Sea Princess visits Adelaide at the end of the cruise season. The Sea Princess is the sister ship to the Dawn Princess and Sun Princess.
Most of the cruise ships arrive at sunrise and depart at sunset on the day of their visit to Harbor. For exact details on arrival and departure times please refer to the Flinders Ports website.
The closest viewing spot is the Outer Harbor passenger terminal albeit access is limited to passengers only. However the best place to view the cruise ships is along the coast from Outer Harbor to Semaphore or from the newly developed Lady Ruthven Reserve. And if you don't get a chance to see these cruise ships in Adelaide then don't despair as there will be ten visits to Kangaroo Island, four to Port Lincoln and one to Robe in the Southeast during this cruise ship season.
Superb article Steve.So much research and wow...great photos.The first shot of Outer Harbour makes this place look really inviting.Nice for me to read this article as I have been visiting here,by road and rail since the 1950's.There was a time you were allowed on board,but I doubt if this would be allowed these days.Now that the ships are arriving to allow tourists to have a quick look around our city and slightly beyond and our new airport attracting more overseas visitors,it is very good news for tourism in this state of South Aust.which had been slipping far behind the other states for a long time.
by firstname.lastname@example.org (score: 2|555) 1115 days ago
Thak you for your 'story' have printed it off - we love the north haven area,
a drive, a coffee+++ at the marina - hopefully a dolphin in the water- and watch the ships come through the breakwater to the harbour. Not a cruise person
myself, - a nice way to spend a day without going on board.