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We were so excited to be sailing on the newest and biggest ship in the NCL line. When we entered the port area in Miami there was no trouble telling which was our ship. It stood out like the Statue Of Liberty. The embarkation went smoothly and we were on board in about 20 minutes after entering the terminal. The first impression was that I would never be able to find my way around but soon learned to use the kiosks that are available by all the elevators to give me directions as to where I wanted to go. I had read the reviews about the new lay out of the rooms and the way the sink was so small and the bathroom area not so private. Well we loved the new lay out and didn't have any trouble. I am an early riser and my husband sleeps late so it was nice to be able to pull the privacy curtain so the light wouldn't bother him and I could see to get dressed. On all other cruises I have had to lay out my clothes the night before and I dress in the dark in the morning and sneek out. More
We enjoyed our meals. We bought two specialty restraunts, the Tempenyaki, and the CircDeSol. We enjoyed both and the show at the Circ was very good. We did not like the Blue Man Group. That was just not our taste but most people we talked to enjoyed it. We especiall liked the HT'0 bar and hot tub area. It being an adult only area it was relaxing and quite. The service on the ship was execellant. Our room was always made up and restocked each day. The waiters in the restraunts were always cheerful and polite. The deembarkation went very smooth. We were out of the terminal as fast as we had entered. In 15 minutes. Less
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Port and Shore Excursions
There is a shopping type mall directly as you enter Costa Maya. They have natives of the area putting on a show of their local music and dance in costume. Well worth watching. There is also a large area where you can sit around a shallow pool and enjoy the sun and can buy food and drinks. There were lots of people there. We did not wear or bring our swim suits off the ship but would have joined the crowd if we had. Also there is an area under thatch roofs and in the sand that you can get a massage. It looked wonderful but again we weren't dressed for that. What we signed up for was a tour of the Mayan ruins. It was about an hours drive away and the tour was about two hours. It is one of the newest excavations and has not been completed yet. It was very interesting and we had a very informative guide. I can't do a lot of walking and this tour was quite suitable for me. The terrain was not steep and there were places to sit down at every stop we made along the tour. Nothing fancy but you could get off your feet.
On Cruise Critic I had read one persons review of this port who said he had gone to Sanchez Beach and taken a cooking class and had give the web site for Sanchez Beach so you could look for yourself to see what was available to do there. We were traveling with another couple and I had read that you could get body massage at Sanchez Beach. We got a taxi in the morning and it was $14.00 to take us out there. We got to see a bit of the town and country side so it was worth it. Thank goodness we went early. There were 4 tables for massage and all were available for us. We each had an hours massage for $60.00 each and they did a very good job. Afterward we talked to some people that had taken the cooking class and they were eating what they had cooked. They said it was fun and worth the money. We found out that if you want you can pay $50.00 each and can eat and drink anything on the menu all day long at no extra cost. They have cabanas you can rent and all kinds of beach toys. Their margaritas are totally different and absolutely delicious. They use a spice that has a bit of chilli pepper in it to rim the glass and the mix is called Tamarindo Margarita Mix. It is rather on the sweet side but with the chili pepper mixture on the rim of the glass it was really good. The bartender wrote down what I needed to make the margarita and I bought the ingredients to take home at a grocery store on the way back to the ship.
Did not intend to take any tours on this stop. Just wanted to walk around in the shopping area. I ended up signing up for a "zip line" tour. It was called the Extreme Zip Line Experience. Being 72 yrs. young I just wanted to try it. I had more fun than I ever expected. The group I was with were all young or at least 30yrs. younger than me. They called me grandma and cheered every time I went out on the zip line. It was nice to be accepted. After the Zip Line Tour we went to a Monkey Farm. That was quite an experience. You go right in the cages with the monkeys and they are very mischievous. One bit me on the finger and drew blood then stole my lip gloss. After that he kept jumping in my arms and wanted to lay there like a baby. I think he was sorry he bit me. There were other animal cages with birds and other animals. One bird cage held big colorful Macaws and you could go in with them too and they gave you seed to feed them. I can say from experience that you do not one of those big birds landing on your bare head. They hang on with their talons. "ouch". We were not happy with the people who run the service for taking passengers from the town out to the ship. They had a very small train like device that could hold quite a few people and they would take you out to the ship for tips. We were just about late getting back to the ship and were rushing when we saw the transportation was sitting there ready to go out to the ship. We and others ran to get the ride and were yelling at them but they took off without us and they only had 2 passengers. That was their last run for the day. It would only have taken them a minutes wait for us all to get there. We then had to hurry to get out to the ship which was quite a walk and as I said earlier I can't do a lot of walking.