Newcastle Cruises Destination Information

The Stunning Main Port of Newcastle

Newcastle in New South Wales is a beach lover’s paradise, which is why it’s such a perfect cruise destination. Pick up a cruise deal and cruise from Newcastle past sweeping coastlines to any number of premium ports in Australia and beyond.

P&O is always a popular choice for Aussies taking cruises from Newcastle, and the Pacific Jewel has recently been given an upgrade.

Main Cruise Ships Departing Newcastle

Sun Princess - After a refurbishment in 2013, freshwater pools, hot tubs and Movies Under the Stars are just a sample of what’s on offer. This gorgeous vessel is especially renowned for its food and wine.

Pacific Jewel - P&O’s Pacific Jewel is just as lustrous as it sounds. An upgrade has seen her the first to boast some fantastic new features including the Pantry, a revolutionary new dining concept. Dig in!

Pacific Aria - With a 1,500 passenger capacity, the Pacific Aria is slightly smaller than other cruise ships in Australia and fairly new to the P&O fleet. It joined the ranks in 2015, along with a mandate from the local line to attract the next generation of cruisers.

Celebrity Solstice - Enjoy more than ten dining options, light-filled spaces and plenty of fun in the sun on the largest Celebrity cruise ship.

Radiance of the Seas - Don’t miss out on a second of stunning sea views on this Royal Caribbean vessel, with its nine-storey glass-enclosed Atrium and glass elevators.

Major cruise brands departing from Newcastle

The variety of cruise lines departing Newcastle mean you are spoilt for choice - and there is more opportunity to pick up a great cruise deal or discounted holiday! Cruise with your favourite line from Newcastle, whichever of these popular brands that might be.

P&O Cruises - For a quintessential Australian experience, cruise from Newcastle with P&O. Their ships will make you feel at home with a casual atmosphere and unique local touches. This company is fun-loving and one of the best cruise lines for families.

Royal Caribbean -  Cruise from Newcastle in in the safe, comfortable hands of the experts - Royal Caribbean. You’ll always be satisfied with the best in food, wine, entertainment and technology, not to mention those sensational views from the top deck.

Oceania Cruises - Experience the elegance of Oceania with its recently refurbished ships ready to wow you with luxurious staterooms, fine dining and excellent service. Relax and soak in the beautiful decor of this all-inclusive cruise experience.

Princess - Savour every moment of your Princess cruise from Newcastle - and then ‘Come Back New’ as their tagline suggests. Enjoy the very best in entertainment options and dine to your heart’s content - Princess will look after all your wants and needs.

Celebrity - Let Celebrity entertain you on your cruise from Newcastle. Choose from a dazzling selection of onboard activities and shore excursions as you pair fine wines with dinner and travel through idyllic waters in Celebrity comfort.

Destinations - Where can you sail on a cruise from Newcastle?

Situated about 160kms north of Sydney, Newcastle has that faraway feel while still being easy to get to. Cruises from Newcastle open the door to a range of destinations in Australia and abroad, whether you’re after a last minute deal or a luxurious dream holiday. Select the ship and destination that suits you best and set sail.   

Australia - Explore Australia by sea with cruises from Newcastle. Head to vibrant Brisbane or Melbourne, or witness wildlife in action at the Great Barrier Reef further north with ports including Cairns, Port Douglas and Willis Island.

The South Pacific - Discover hidden gems in the South Pacific on a cruise from Newcastle. Dive into the crystalline waters of Fiji, New Caledonia and Vanuatu and experience a warm Pacific Island welcome.

New Zealand - Why not pay a visit to your Kiwi friends across the Tasman? Check out Auckland - the big smoke and City of Sails - then prepare to be blown away by the South Island’s spectacular mountain scenery.

How many passengers take cruises from Newcastle?

Cruising is becoming more and more popular in Newcastle. Over the 2015-2016 cruise season, 10 cruise ships anchored at Newcastle port, including even Cunard’s iconic Queen Elizabeth vessel. Yet more cruise lines are lining up to add Newcastle to their itineraries - at least 18 cruise ships are forecast to make berth in this lovely city between February 2017 and November 2018.

As of 2016, cruising was contributing around $11 million per year into the region’s economy. This figure is likely to grow with the massive infrastructural upgrade set to get underway in the coming months to increase the port’s capacity.

Where is Newcastle’s cruise terminal located and what is its capacity?

Newcastle’s Channel Berth is your gateway to this beautiful region. Your cruise ship will dock at the terminal located off Bourke Street in Carrington.

By the end of 2018, the port’s upgrades are scheduled for completion. Mooring improvements will then accommodate larger ships with up to 3900 passengers, while a $12.7 million upgrade to the cruise terminal will mean improved facilities, greater accessibility, a dedicated car park and more cruises from Newcastle in general.

Newcastle’s Merewether Beach is a great spot to visit before you embark on your cruise.

Facilities at Newcastle’s Cruise Terminal

When you arrive at the Port of Newcastle cruise terminal you will be welcomed by a host of friendly faces. If you need any information, approach the staff at the visitor information booth or look out for a local volunteer or guide.

Newcastle’s CBD is just a ten-minute drive away. You will need to catch a taxi from the port or take one of the regular shuttles down the road to Queens Wharf, where you can access all the services you need. Shopping, dining and entertainment options abound.

How to get to Newcastle’s cruise ship terminal

Newcastle Airport is approximately a 25-minute drive from the port. Public transport links between the two destinations are limited, so your best bet is to take a shuttle or a taxi, which can cost around $60.

If you are exploring the city, you have more transport options, such as:

  • Buses - Newcastle Buses serve most areas in Newcastle, with private bus companies connecting the outer suburbs and regional areas. State buses are free in the city centre between 7.30am and 6pm daily.
  • Trains - Trains connect some of Newcastle’s suburban areas with the city’s main centres as well as regional Hunter, also known as the Hunter Valley.
  • Ferry - A ferry operates regularly between Stockton Wharf and Newcastle Wharf.
  • Car hire - it’s easy to hire a car from the airport or city.

Weather and climate - when is the best time to cruise from Newcastle?

Newcastle’s moderate climate makes the city suitable for year-round cruising. That means you can escape the hustle and bustle for a holiday whenever you desire.

  • Between May and August, temperatures in New South Wales are slightly cooler and you can expect some rainfall - but this can be the perfect time to find a cheaper, last-minute deal.
  • During the height of summer between November and February, Newcastle cruises are popular and the weather is scorching. Keep this in mind if you don’t like travelling with a crowd.
  • You can save money without compromising on the weather by travelling during the shoulder seasons - March and April, and September, October and early November. These months are still warm without being too hot or crowded.
  • Check school holiday dates and stay away from those if you want to avoid peak capacity on ships.

If you have the time...

Venture out for a leisurely stroll along the banks of the Hunter River and take your pick from a range of lively bars and restaurants. The Hunter Valley region is famed for its wine, so a little taste would be worth your while. Have a day to spare at the start or end of your Newcastle cruise? Consider heading 45 minutes out of the city and into the vineyards.