“Family Spring Break”
Cruise review of Norwegian Spirit

bgrygl8 Norwegian Spirit 4 Family Spring Break
Member Since 2010
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We arrived in New Orleans the day before sailing to take in some sights. Just an FYI for those who don't know (like we didn't), restaurants will happily give your table away to the highest bidder, even after you have waited for an hour. This happened at Pat O'Brien. If you are hungry, don't go there.

Our overall experience on the Spirit was very positive. We have sailed with NCL numerous times and yes, have never been too impressed with their "free" dining options, but we do continue to sail on NCL because we LOVE the Freestyle concept. I have to say, the food has improved and the breakfast buffets were fantastic. Service in the main dining areas is very hit or miss. We were pleased with our cabin steward, but the rooms are TINY. We had an inside cabin on Deck 11. It looks like the room was made to accommodate 3, but they added a trundle under one of the beds so that it can sleep 4. If you planned on sleeping in the same bed as your spouse, that is not going to happen. Everyone had a single bed and there was no room to move anything. A family of 4 should definitely book a balcony cabin.

We decided to drive to New Orleans and instead of parking at the ship's lot, we chose to park at Machu Picchu. The lot is about 5 min. from the terminal, they provide a round trip shuttle and pick you up within a few minutes of calling them. The advantage is not having to wait for your car once you disembark, although I don't know if that's an issue. We were very happy with Machu Picchu Parking. Embarkation - I would not arrive between 12:00 and 1:00. Very long lines.

Norwegian Spirit Cruises to the Western Caribbean
Overall Ratings
  • Cabin
  • Dining
  • Embarkation
  • Enrichment Activities
  • Entertainment
  • Family & Children
  • Fitness & Recreation
  • Onboard Experience
  • Public Rooms
  • Rates
  • Service
  • Shore Excursions
  • Value for Money

Port and Shore Excursions

We booked a zip-lining/cave tubing excursion with Jaguar Paw. This was fantastic! There are 5 platforms in the jungle and you rappel down the last one. Very fun. Cave tubing was interesting, but very slow and you have to be connected to everyone in your group (by your feet and underarms). Just a warning - NCL lets passengers booked on their excursions off the ship first. So, even though the ship's arrival time states 8:00am, if you have an excursion booked with someone else, the earliest you can get off the ship is 9:30am. You also need to take a tender which takes approx. 20-30 min. We almost missed our excursion because of this. NCL was quites unorganized with the people trying to get off early for non-NCL excursions.

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We booked a para-sailing excursion with Costa Maya Tours. Our experience was very positive, but their meeting location is a little hard to find if you don't speak Spanish. I would recommend taking a cab and having the driver drop you off at the location. We took the bus, which drops you off in the middle of town and had to search for the office. Other than that, the para-sailing experience was great. We spent the rest of the day lounging at the beach. You don't have to book a beach party to do this. Just pick any spot at the beach and you're free to use the lounge chairs and tables as long as you buy something from the establishment behind you. We ended up at a place called "Oxtanrah". Beer was $10 for a bucket of 6 Coronas. The fajitas were fantastic and so was the service. Great day!

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Pre-booked a dolphin swim with dolphindiscovery.com and got a great deal. They often run promotions and we paid $83 for an excursion than normally costs $103. This was a great experience. You are in the water for over an hour and can shake hands, hug, kiss, swim and be pushed by the dolphin. They also let the group get in the water by the manatees and pet them. Once you're done there are plenty of places to lounge, snorkel, eat... Another great day.

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Published 04/12/10
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Norwegian Spirit Cruises to the Western Caribbean
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