CYBER MONDAY DEALS! Get discounts on top-rated cruises. View Deals
  • Newsletter
  • Write a Review
  • Boards
  • Deals
  • Find a Cruise
  • Reviews
  • News
  • Cruise Tips

Norwegian Dawn Review

4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating
2901 reviews

A pleasant experience on my first cruise

Review for Norwegian Dawn to the Western Caribbean
User Avatar
First Time Cruiser • Age 50s

Rating by category

Value for Money
Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation

Additional details

Sail Date: Apr 2017
Cabin: Mid-Ship Inside

This was my first ever cruise. My wife and I choose a the seven day cruise on the Norwegian Dawn leaving from New Orleans. We choose this cruise because of the destinations, overall price, and the port of New Orleans is only 35 miles from our home. I was very excited when the day finally arrived for us to leave on our seven day vacation. Having never cruised before I wasn't entirely sure what to expect. I had read many reviews and even watched other peoples youtube videos of their cruise experience to prepare for what was in store. I must say that overall we had a great time.

Embarkation was smooth and quick. The only problem was the lady who issued our key cards got my wife and I mixed up. I would slide my card and my wife's picture and info would show up and visa versa. This would plaque us for the entire cruise. The staff on the Dawn tried to fix it but were only partly successful. I went through five key cards on a seven day cruise because of this problem. I don't know why this was such a problem for them but in the long run it didn't cause any major problems.

I really enjoyed the ship itself. My wife who has been on other cruises said she thought the ship was not as elegant as others she had been on but I thought everything was nice. The ship was very clean and sanitary. After a day or so I could find my way around very nicely without having to look at the map provided on each deck.

Cabin Review

Mid-Ship Inside

Cabin IB

Small but functional. Also very quiet room, we were never disturbed at any time by outside noise. The hum of the engines at night were subtle and really helped put me to sleep. Bathroom and shower area very pleasantly larger than I expected. Bed was comfortable and firm. Very dark at night with no lights, great for sleeping, but you may want to bring a night lite or leave bathroom light on during the night to move around the cabin if you must. Not the most luxurious room available but we chose this because of the price and the fact that we didn't plan on spending much time there anyway.

Port Reviews

Harvest Caye

Norwegians private island, This was my favorite day because it was so relaxing and beautiful. There is little to do on the island itself except for a few shops and the lighthouse zip line which we didn't do. We spent the day on the beach, and in the pool relaxing having a few drinks and visiting with other cruisers. Plenty of free beach chairs and umbrellas and the weather couldn't have been nicer. Overall a totally relaxing day. Only downside I applied sunscreen 4 times during the day and still got a little burned. That Caribbean sun doesn't play around.

Costa Maya

Costa Maya is a small fishing village with a port so cruise ships will dock. There is not much to do there but shop, which is fine if that is what you want to do. My wife and I took the trolley into Malahaul which is about 4 miles away. The trolley ride there is only 3 dollars each. There you will find much more shopping with cheaper prices, and many small restaurants and bars with there on private beach access. Beware the locals are can be quiet annoying to tourist trying to sell you everything from a massage or a cigar. However some were polite and quite helpful. Go to the Tropicana bar and beach area and ask for Rueben. He was quiet helpful and spoke great English. Food and drinks there are good and very inexpensive. When you are ready to come back you must hire a cab since the trolley is only one way. Cab ride back to port is only 3 dollars each.

7 Helpful Votes
previous reviewnext review

Find a Norwegian Dawn Cruise from $389

Want to cruise smarter?
Get expert advice, insider tips and more.
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy and Cookies Statement and Terms of Use.
About UsCruise DestinationsFirst Time CruisersFind A Cruise

Share your feedback

International Sites

© 1995—2022, The Independent Traveler, Inc.

  • Privacy and Cookies Statement

  • Terms of Use

  • Site Map

  • Cookie Consent