This might be a little long, but it's in segments so you can skip a lot if you want. This was our 3rd time on NCL and my mothers 1st. We are 48, 51 and she is 75. We left on Thursday and stayed at Days Hotel for the free shuttle. Friday did the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Jersey side has smaller groups than the NY side. Saturday took a shuttle to Newark Airport to NY on Newark Liberty shuttle $15 round trip (seniors/disable) $25 reg. Did the Empire State building, then did Gray Line Bus Hop On/Off tour. Saw everything we wanted (&didn't want) to see and ready for the laid back cruise! Way to many people in NY!
EMBARKATION: Got to port @ 11:30am and on the boat by 12:10pm very easy. Went right to our room to drop off our carry ons and off to check out the ship & EAT! Ate at Raffles and by 1:15pm the rest of our luggage were at the room. Drill was @ 3:30pm and left at 4pm. Sailed pass the Statue of Liberty on the starboard side. Ate to late for 1st show "Home Free" but saw the last song and they sounded GREAT!
CABIN: Balcony BA, standard room, no fridge, coffee maker, hair dryer, 2 electrical outlets, safe, sofa pulled out to a double bed-absolutely no room when pulled out!- soap and shampoo dispenser in the shower, soap dispenser on the sink, shoe mit and bottle of lotion. There were towels for only 2 people, but let the cabin stewards know and boom we had more-They were GREAT! Lots of storage room, lots of hangers, and 2 robes. TV Channels: FOX News, CNN, ESPN, Cartoon Network, TNT, TCM= No local channels, nbc,cbs, or abc!
SHIP: Very nice. Asian motif. Grand Centrum is very roomy and large. Stardust Theater is at the back and you do feel the engines (not a big deal) Maharajah's Casino I like the fact that it's in the front and I don't have to walk thru it to get somewhere-very smokey, nice looking casino. Fitness room is small but has everything, you do have to go through the spa room to get to it, that's a little strange. Windows diningroom is very elegant, Garden diningroom is very nice, but not much views. For breakfast, Garden's only allows guest with balconies. Blue Lagoon Cafe' was very small. Specialty restaurants looked nice, but never went in. Pool area very nice, and the kids pool area was very cool! Internet Cafe's printer wasn't working from day one and was never fixed. When asked about it, this was the 1st and only person that came across rude. IMPORTANT: Don't buy your pictures until Wed/Thurs you get 20% off!!! 5x7 $10 8x10 $25
FOOD/ENTERTAINMENT: I thought the food was very good, and the entertainment was good. Singers "Home Free" and illusionist Richard Burr were GREAT! Comedy of Peter Sasso was very good, but "second city" should have stayed in the city. The music around different areas were very good.
PORTS OF CALL: MARTHA'S VINEYARD: You tender at Oak Bluff. Left ship on tender about 9am and walked to info booth to find out where to pick up public transportation $3 all day rides for seniors/disable $6 all others. Went to Edgartown and walked to lighthouse-3/4 mile. Once there you can get a good picture of the ship far off. Went back to Oak Bluff to shop and see the "gingerbread houses" very nice area. Shopping prices were really good. Came back to ship by 1:30pm Raffles very busy but easy to find seats out side. Latitudes Party @ 5pm FREE drinks for 1 hour-any drinks. Got to Windows @ 6:15 and didn't get out till 8:20! Food is good, but service is slower than reg style dining. Saw the 9:30 show...ok BOSTON: Got there about 8am NCL offered shuttle for $17pp round trip to downtown. We took a taxi $15 for the 3 of us to the aquarium area-many tour booths. We did City View Hop On/Off tour w/harbor cruise for $32pp Good tour, we got off about 1 mile away from port-you can pick up public transportation (silverline) for about $2 and it will take you right in front of the ship or walk. To short of time here! Would have liked 5 hours in Martha's Vineyard & 8 hours in Boston. HALIFAX: Walked to town, very easy. Get whale watch tours early, even online before you get there, they fill up quickly. We walked the town then got the "Hopper Tour" kinda like "Ducky Tours" $24pp good tour. Walked a little more then hired a college aged kid in a rickshaw to get the 3 of us back to the ship. Poor Kid! $20 and it was worth it (for us!) After dinner 2 shows that night were the illusionist Richard Burr-GREAT!!! ST. JOHN: Rainy & foggy. 45 minutes to get off the ship, 1 ramp and many wheelchairs and handicaps. There is a large tent set up for tours and a separate tent for locals that sell crafts and souvenirs. There was a shuttle to town $5 round trip and taxi's for hire @ $50 per hour. We got Ray Flowers as a taxi driver (firstname.lastname@example.org) & was a great salesman for St. John. He took us inside the county courthouse (built in 1829), Trinity Church, Fort Howe which over looks the harbor (great picture of ship), to the reversing falls, and on to the Bay of Fundy to see boats on the bottom of sea floor at low tide. There is a little gift shop that sells art pictures that are really good and great prices! My husband walked out to see the caves while my mom & I ate seafood chowder w/biscuit $6.99 Rain quit by about 1:30pm and the fog finally lifted enough to get some great pictures. Didn't make it to the show and it was Chocoholic Buffet night and we missed that too! Done it before so I didn't miss it. It is great to see at least once though. Sea day: Lots to do or not! When we went to dinner we got there about 5:40 and missed the 7pm illusionist show Richard Burr! Went to Galaxy of the Stars for the comedy of Peter Sasso and it was standing room only.
DISEMBARKATION: You sail right passed the Statue of Liberty again (this time on port side) and she is amazing at sunrise! Got into port @ 7:15/7:30 We do express disembarkation and left about 9:30/9:45 VERY EASY!!
All in all this was a wonderful cruise. Staff, food, and ship were great. Dinner service a little slow at times and again I think it's the free style dining, there's no time limit. My mom's pull out sofa bed broke @ 3:30am one morning but my husband is so handy he fixed it good enough that she could go back to bed. I think he thought she might have to sleep with us. He was going to do anything!!!! We told our cabin steward and they had it totally fixed the next day. We even had someone call us that night to check on every thing. The only thing I still can't get use to is baseball caps, tennies, jeans ratty or nice in the diningroom, but hey I'm on old 48! I wanted to ask one guy if he was the one that was going to fix my mom's bed, but then I realized that the maintenance guys dress better! Bada Boom....I'm here all night folks!! Great cruise, and happy cruising.