Norwegian Dawn Cruise Review by lsu2fan: Great To Get Away
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Great To Get Away
Embarkation: Well over two hours from getting to the pier to getting on board. This long wait was due to a Coast Guard inspection as the Dawn had just repositioned from NYC to Miami. No point fussing so we just dealt with it.
Ship: Showing its age but clean. Enjoyed the atmosphere.
Cabin: 11598, Cat. AF, Mini-Suite. Pretty much a glorified balcony on any other ship. My DW "has to have a bathtub". I didn't think the extra dineros were worth it but.... if it made her happy then!
Dining: As we did not eat at any of the speciality restaurants, the menu, although good, became sometime repetitive. We much preferred the Venetian.
Spa Package: Well worth the money for us as we aren't heavy drinkers. Never very crowded, quiet and relaxing.
Shore Excursions: The process of getting off the ship at each one of the ports was long, chaotic and cumbersome. On every other NCL sailing that we've been on they did a much better job. All ports, (Samana, More Tortola, Antigua, Barbados and St. Kitts) were beautiful although there are other ports in the Dominican Republic other than Samana that we enjoy better. We did not participate in NCL sponsored shore excursions but hired are own tour operators or drivers at each island.
Service: The service that we were given was outstanding. Every staff member that we came in contact with was extremely polite and friendly. We participated in NCL's S.T.Y.L.E. project and recognized well over a dozen staffers that "went above and beyond". There was one negative interaction with a member of their management but this did not change our outlook on the rest of the staff. Our cabin stewards, restaurant hostesses and wait staff, and even Antonio, the omelet chef, were great.
Entertainment: Pretty much typical cruise stuff. Band on the Run and Bollywood were entertaining. We did see the magic show and it was OK.
Trip highlights: Meeting some very wonderful folks from all parts of the world, especially making new friends with folks from Canada and Virginia Beach. Spending quiet time, especially in the early mornings, on the balcony watching the ship as it nears port.
We consider ourselves experienced cruisers and truly have never been on a "bad" cruise. We believe that just some are better than others. Would we recommend the ship, probably. Less
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Cabin review: Norwegian Dawn 11598
11598 Cat. AF Mid-ship Balcony small but nice. Quite close to elevators which made it very convenient but yet not noisy at all. Bed comfortable. TV miniscule. Sitting area small. Bathroom nice and included a tub and separate WC. Closet space not ample at all. Pretty much a glorified balcony cabin with a great central location.
Port and Shore Excursions
There were less than 20 people on the whole beach. We were able to buy drinks and food and use the changing and bathrooms there.
We found quite a bit of coral right off the shore line that made it hard to get back onto the beach but all in all it was a beautiful experience.
Next trip we'll go back to Crane Bay.
Getting to South Friars Bay is worth the price of admission. The drive from the dock takes one up a mountain and from the top you get a panoramic view of both the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. The beach itself doesn't have white sand but it seems to jut out right from the mountainside. From the beach you get a beautiful view of sister island, Nevis.
We were able to spend time with friends, Barry and Leigh from Virginia while relaxing. Beers at the shack/restaurant were $2. Needless to say we had a few.
However, we did not let this ruin our day so we took a taxi to Cane Garden Bay. Along with our newly found friends, Cathy and Scott, we became fast friends with the local "Painkillers". Just what the doctor ordered.
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