Hours of operation from 9AM to 10:30PM. Port days cost an extra $6 per hour per kid during docking time. We did not take advantage of the port babysitting service because our kids came with us on excursions. Kids club does not feed the kids so you must pick up your kids for meals so my husband and I could only leave them for a couple of hours at a time. They also do not take the kids to the pool. I am assuming this is because of liability. Therefore my kids were not fans of the club and we used it in moderation. Age groups are very strict. Do not expect the club to permit siblings/friends in the same age group unless they both qualify. Activities for 6-9 year olds are very structured. There is not a lot of screen time, which I liked but my kids didn't.
My kids loved the pools and water slides. There are some height restrictions for the slides but my boys are relatively short for their age and they passed. Sometimes the lines were long but most of the time they had plenty of slide time. The pools were small and loaded with people but they were all fresh water pools. They ranged from shallow splash areas to approximately 5 feet in depth. Our kids are competent swimmers so we relaxed and they managed themselves for the most part once we went over the rules. NCL is not strict about enforcing the age limit at the hot tubs so they were constantly populated with all ages.
When I booked aquatic encounters I expected we would be taken to some kind of beach park where we would interact with the wildlife and then enjoy the natural surroundings. Not so. The Costa Maya dolphin encounter was in a tank located right off the pier with no beach and the stingray encounter in Cozumel was a fenced off area on a rocky beach. Make sure you inquire about the facilities if you arrange for nature encounters so you know what to anticipate. The Gumbiliana Park and Tabanya beach excursion in Roatan was excellent. My kids loved interacting with the monkeys and the beach though crowded was beautiful with plenty of snorkeling opportunities.
Ug. We have been on many cruise ships on three different lines and have sailed NCL before. This ship by far has the worst lay-out (lots of broken up corridors) and the smallest cabins known to man. The Lilliputians would have trouble navigating such tiny staterooms. We had a family mini-suite with a balcony on deck 14. The cabin was long and narrow. With the hideaway bed down we could not move around at all. My husband had to take the kids out so I could shower and dress for dinner. Our cabin had one drawer, one small closet with no shelves and a few cubbies. There was tons of wasted space in the name of design. I am 5'5" and my feet hung off the edge of the bed. I have no idea what NCL was thinking. Other passengers that I spoke with had the same complaints. If you don't mind having a teeny tiny cabin, then this ship is for you. I recommend getting two cabins if you don't want to feel clausterphobic.
Typical cruise ship food. Good.
Bring your swimsuits in your carry on because luggage does not typcially get delivered to your stateroom until the evening. This way you can go to the pool while everyone else is waiting for their bags.
You can bring your own wine on-board. Make sure you bring a corkscrew too.
Very nice. Wonderful people who have families to support in their native contries and strive for excellence.
Premium. We liked the Blue Man Group and heard great stuff about the other shows.