Pride of Aloha - Hawaii: Norwegian Sky Cruise Review by Felicia

Norwegian Sky 5
Member Since 2002

Overall Member Rating

Pride of Aloha - Hawaii

Sail Date: April 2006
Destination: Hawaii
Embarkation: Honolulu
I recently cruised on the Pride of Aloha with my boyfriend. I am 29 years old and he is 31 years old. We flew from Boston to L.A. and then on to Honolulu on United Airlines. I booked the air with the NCL and I think it is better to do it this way because it is then NCLs responsibility to get you to the port in time etc. So, if there are any delays etc., you dont need to worry and they are responsible.

As soon as we arrived at the Honolulu airport, we saw a representative from NCL waiting for us. We got our bags and there was a bus waiting to take us to the pier. The airport is very close to the pier, so it only took a few minutes. There was a slightly long line to board the boat, but it moved fairly quickly. There, we finally got a lei to wear!

Even though we booked the cheapest cabin, we were upgraded a few notches and ended up on deck 10, inside cabin. For people who have cruised before, you will find the rooms very small. The bathroom are also small, but More always hot hot water and great water pressure (which is important). Our steward was very friendly and we always had clean towels. The room was clean in my opinion, although I have to agree that they should have more Hawaiian themed artwork hanging. In the hallways, its all Hawaiian pictures, but in our cabin we had a one picture of Hawaii and the other of the Louisiana Herring birda tad bizarre. The small cabin didnt bother us, as we were hardly in the cabin.

The ship is small, but clean and easy to navigate. We ate once in the specialty restaurant (the Italian one). The service was wonderfullike that of a high-end restaurant. The food was good as well. One night during the cruise, they offer the specialty restaurants for $5 a person instead of $10, which is worth it. We also ate at the main dining restaurants (Crossings and The Palace). The longest we ever had to wait for a table was 20 minutes. The service was quick in my opinionI heard of people complaining that service was slow, but that never happened to us. We only had one waitress who seemed a tad unfriendly, but that was itthe rest were lovely. The food was good and they try to have a lot of Hawaiian fruits/desserts/appetizers etc. If you want to eat at the specialty restaurants, you have to make reservations. You can actually make reservations the first day of the cruise for the entire week. The main restaurants only do reservations for parties of 6 or more. The breakfast buffet was very good and each night, the buffet also has themed dinner (Hawaiian, Asian, Mexican etc.) We never had too much trouble finding tables inside or out. I never felt like the boat was crowded with people. Free ice cream as well at Sprinkles. Anyway, we were pleased with the food in general.

The entertainment was good for a cruise ship. We missed the comedian because we were jet lagged, but I heard people saying it was very good. The magician is great and the theatre type performances pretty decent. They also often had live music on the pool deck and I thought the music was good as well. Every night there was something going on for sure. I think that they do a good job of having an array of activities. On this cruise, you are never at sea (you are only at sea during the night) so, I was never bored.

We rented cars for the days we were docked in Kauai and Maui. I recommend Budget, as they were lovely to deal with and even gave us a ride back to the boat one night when we dropped the car off late, even though they didnt have to because they were closed. I think renting a car in these ports is a good idea because the boat is docked overnight, so you dont have to rush back. You can have the car and go where you want, when you want and without a busload of people from the ship. We tried to do as little shore excursions as possible because they are overpriced. However, my boyfriend golfed twice through the ship and he really enjoyed that. We also did the Captain Zodiac snorkeling in Kona. The reef there is beautiful and the snorkeling is great. I would highly recommend this tour. The reef is located where Captain Cook was killed (there is a statue there for him). It was a lot of fun for sure. I did the Catch a wave surf lessons in Maui. I would recommend this to anyone (even if you have never surfed like myself). The beach is beautiful and the instructors great fun. We all managed to stand on the board and ride some waves! There were all age groups present as wellso, anyone can do it. They take photos of you while you are surfing and you can buy a disc of your photos afterward.

For the luauDO NOT BOOK THE CRUISE SHIP LUAU. I knew this before I went. I went online and booked The Old Lahaina Luau in Lahaina Maui and I would highly recommend it. I also heard that the Luau at the Hyatt in Maui is very good as well. The ships luau isnt a real luauthe ship runs it. This means the ship hires the dancers, does the food and all the guests are people from the ship. One woman told me that there were over 900 people there and they had to wait in a very long line to get food. When the show started, they couldnt see a thing because there were so many people standing in their way. They also said the show was only 45 minutes long. Naturally, the cruise ship offers no other luau but there own. But, as soon as you know you are going on this trip, go online and book The Old Lahaina or another real luau.

We did a Pearl Harbor and city tour the day we left the ship. The city tour of Honolulu was a disappointment because we were never allowed to get off the bus. Id say that if you can find a place to store your luggage, do that. Then, head off to Pearl Harbor early in the a.m. and go yourself there. You have to get to Pearl Harbor early, otherwise you might have to wait over an hour or more for your turn to take the ferry over to the memorial.

All and all, we had a great time on this trip. I dont know why people complain about this ship, because I found it clean and the staff was usually all super friendly. Yes, the cabins are small, but I dont know why one would go to Hawaii and stay in a cabin all day! I would recommend this cruise for sure. Less

Published 04/30/06

Cabin review: ID336 Inside

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