A national audience got glimpses of Kiama on Monday morning when a P&O cruise ship carrying the cast of morning TV show Sunrise anchored off Bombo Beach.
The ship, Pacific Jewel, was ferrying passengers on a three-night ‘‘short break’’ Australia Day cruise that began from Sydney Harbour on January 25.
The Pacific Jewel stopped off the Kiama coast for several hours on Monday morning as Sunrise presenters David Koch and Samantha Armytage broadcast the public holiday edition of the show, which featured a performance by former Australia’s Got Talent winners Justice Crew, from the boat.
David Jones, spokesman for Carnival Australia, which operates P&O Cruises, said it was the first time an Australian television program had broadcast live from out at sea.
There were rumours floating around the boat was in trouble when onlookers noticed the ship remained stationary after the show ended, but Mr Jones said everything had gone to plan and that stopping close to shore was intentional.
Aerial photographer Colin Douch was up in the air bright and early to snap a few pictures of the ship, which he estimated to be about 800 metres off the coast at the closest point.
‘‘We could see the people on the deck, there were heaps of people on the top deck waving and enjoying the view,’’ he said.
An Illawarra passenger picked up a $10,000 cheque from the show, with Oak Flats’ Marilyn Treanor winning the Sunrise Cash Cow money – an extra-special surprise, as she was also celebrating her 40th birthday aboard the ship.
Mr Jones said the South Coast was a budding cruise destination because of the coastline’s spectacular natural beauty.
He expected more would travel this way in future due to improvements being made to the port at Eden.
The Pacific Jewel returned to Sydney yesterday afternoon.