Noumea is often described as the Paris of the Coral Sea. Prior to World War II, New Caledonia was a relatively unknown French settlement. Following Captain James Cook's discovery of New Caledonia on September 4, 1774, the French gained official control of the territory under Napoleon III's command. In 1862, the region was designated a penal colony for convicts and political prisoners.
With this being said, our day started by arriving in the industrial area of the port. Obviously, a large port that sails supplies to all of the islands.
We took a Hop Off Hop On Bus excursion provided by the cruise line for a low cost. The local language is French and only a few speak English. This bus excursion got off us off the ship and provided a little bit of sightseeing. There's not alot to see.
This is a picture of the local farmers' market, where most locals shop for fresh produce.
The streets are steep in Noumea. Reminds me of some of the streets in San Francisco. We opted to wait for the bus, than walk uphill on this street.
Interesting fact: they do have a sole McDonald's in Noumea. The price for a Big Mac though is $15. We ate back on the ship. Everything was very expensive.
The main beach area here is called Lemon Bay. No facilities of any kind and the beach is rocky. On the other side of the island is much windier and all the locals do their wind surfing there.
I wanted to show this picture, so you could see the roots growing outside of the tree. This is very typical all over the island of the trees.
My sister, Donna and I on the tour bus on our way back to the ship. Happy and hot.
Forgot to tell you how my ukulele lessons are going: I know now 3 chords, unforunately, I can't play them altogether. I may be better as a strummer in the group. At one point, they made me sing the song "Over The Rainbow", because I'm a better singer than ukulele player.
We had happy hour in the Vista Gaming Lounge (not a casino), with the other Elite & Platinum Princess Cruisers. Almost to the Elite status, where I get free laundry done.
For dinner, we dined in the fabulous Crown Grill, where I had it all: Prawns, Ribeye Steak, French Onion Soup & a platter of desserts. It doesn't get much better than this.
Determined to beat the casino (ha ha), I went and tried my luck again and did much better this time. I won $675 AUD (about $600 USD). It's all going towards my growing Princess tab on board.
I hope I have inspired you to travel on a Princess Cruise or just to travel.
Tomorrow, we visit Lifou, another of the islands in New Caledonia.
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