Norwegian Spirit Cruise Review by alinicus
- Sail Date: May 2009
- Destination: Bermuda
- Cabin Type: Mid-Ship Inside
We booked this trip fairly last minute (myself and wife) because we are not sure when we a chance to travel again anytime soon. So, as a result we booked this trip due to 2 things - reasonable price and location of embarkation port (90 minute train ride, 20 minute walk to ship).Embarkation was easily the longest (7 cruises) that we had ever encountered. We arrived at the terminal around 11:30 and were on board at 1:00 - no big deal. We met several nice people in line and it was very organized and kept moving the whole time.The first full day at sea was a little rough - not real bad - we've encountered worse, so it was pretty uneventful. Weather was not good, either. I played in a Texas Hold 'em Tournament in the casino. It was very well-run. This is the second such tournament I've done on an NCL ship (the Dawn in January) and they were both really well run - good dealers, great flow. Dinner in Windows Dining Room, which was excellent (this was definitely the better of the 2 main dining rooms). We caught the Not So Newlywed Show in the Galaxy on The Stars Lounge - it was ok - we always emjoy this show on every cruise. Always the same questions, always the same answers, but still always funny.The next day we awoke to spectacular weather, which continued for the next few days. Breakfast in Windows - very good. We finished breakfast around 9 and headed out to the pool deck as we neared Bermuda. We approached the island from the north and came in around St. George and had some great views of the island and Fort St. Catherine. Got some great pictures. We docked at 11:00 on the nose. We waited to go ashore for a little bit and grabbed lunch in Raffles. After lunch we headed ashore and walked around the Dockyard area for a little while. We finally decided on purchasing a 3 day transportation pass. Without question, this is what I would highly recommend to anyone looking to see the entire island at a value. We took the bus to Gibb's Hill Lighthouse and walked to the top (185 steps - worth every one of them) for the spectacular views (for only 2.50, btw). We got some great pictures and grabbed the next bus to Horshoe Beach. After spending a little time there, we caught the next bus to Hamilton. Being as it was Sunday, the city was pretty quiet - most shops were closed and there was very little traffic. We hung around Front St. for a while then caught the ferry back to the Dockyard. Admittedly, we were a little skeptical that we had not (purposely) booked any excursions initially. But after our first day and the success we had with the transportation passes, we knew we would see and do more than we could have hoped.That evening we had dinner at Shogun for sushi. It was exceptional - well worth the $15 pp charge. Godzilla Rolls- now our favorite!!Our next day in Bermuda we boarded a bus early and headed out to the beach. One thing we really enjoyed about the island was the people we encountered. Every local that boarded the bus said good morning and asked how everyone was. It was easily the most pleasant place we have ever visited. Also, the island itself is outrageously clean and there were ZERO people harassing you that you might find in some other islands (ie Nassau, Cozumel, St. Thomas) - it was a pleasure!We arrived at Elbow Beach (one of the more popular beaches on the island) around 10. There was no one around when we arrived - literally no one. It was nice to just walk up and down the beach for a bit by ourselves...very nice. We then headed back up the hill and caught the next bus back to Horshoe Beach where we would spend a few hours relaxing. We rented beach chairs (albeit for $10 each - ouch!) and enjoyed one of the most beautiful beaches we have ever visited. We also took the time to walk further up the beach where we found several beautiful spots along the coast - well worth the walk.Once we had enough of the beach, we hopped on the bus and headed to The Swizzle Inn South Side for lunch - very good! Great burger and great Monte Cristo sandwich! Then it was on to Hamilton on the bus. We wanted to get out of the hot sun for a while so we decided to go to the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute. They had some really impressive exhibits, including a very cool room filled with seashells from all over the world (better than it sounds) and a good exhibit about the Titanic. We then headed back on the ferry - once again enjoying our return trip to the Dockyard. That night's dinner was low-key (we were pretty fried from all the sun!) at Raffles and we called it an early night.The next day again brought beautiful weather and we boarded an early ferry to St. George. We really enjoyed this quaint, historic village. Unfortunately, the historical reenactments that they typically do in King's Square daily, for whatever reason, were not done. We did go to St. Peter's church, walked the charming streets and visited the remains of the Unfinished Church (really cool). We caught the 3:00 ferry back to the Dockyard. (One note - the RC Grandeur of the Seas was docked next to us and was scheduled to leave at 4:00. The ferry left a little late and it was a 40 minute ride back and there was a party on the ferry that were on the grandeur. As we were approaching the dock - probably a half mile away - we saw the Grandeur leaving at 4:00 as scheduled...without the party on our ferry. Lesson being: don't leave it to chance - they don't wait for you.)We had dinner in The Garden Dining Room - which was just ok. After dinner we headed back ashore to a pub called the Frog & Onion. This is a very unique pub, as it was built inside one of the many forts on the island. We really enjoyed the atmosphere and they had some great local microbrews (the only place in Bermuda to have on-site brewing). Our next 2 days were at sea - the first day was great weather and was an enjoyable day all-around. We attended a "History of Magic" seminar with the magician on board, which was pretty interesting. Dinner in Windows and we caught the "Perfect Couple" contest in Galaxy of the stars - very funny!Our final day was enjoyable enough - nice weather early and got progressively worse as the day went on. By the evening it was downright cold on deck. We caught the Second City Comedy show, which was relatively funny - the energy in the crowd was not great. Disembarkation in Boston was late, but we were off the ship by 9:00. (Waited in line for about an hour - using walk-off option with our own luggage.) One odd thing about disembarkation, which we have never encountered, was that we were not directed to Customs after disembarking the ship. We came down the gangway, with customs form in hand, and...found ourselves curbside after stepping off the escalator. We looked around, saw several others with the same reaction, found a cab and headed to South Station to our train and home by 11:00 am.Overall, an OUTSTANDING trip to an amazing island! It caught us off guard how much we loved the island - the landscape, the welcome feeling, the cleanliness, the people, the food, the weather, everything. We would definitely take this cruise again - no question about it!
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