Wanted to do a Baltic cruise and overall had a very good experience on the Breakaway, were in a Mini-Suite with large balcony, cabin was great, balcony (or the behavior of other passengers was a disappointment, see cabin comments), kids also thoroughly enjoyed their activities and kids staff on the cruise.
Food - Prepaid for 3 Specialty Meals, had these at Brazilian, Teppanyaki and Cirque Dreams;
Brazilian probably a slightly underwhelming experience, if we were to do the same package again would probably try Cagney's instead, meat itself was good, however pace seemed to vary with no servers then every server then none again, and for the $30pp I think it was I'd say the food wasn't that much better than other options.
Teppanyaki was a fun night with the kids, it's all about the show and our server was pretty entertaining, plenty of food and overall an Excellent meal.
Cirque Dreams again a great night out, the show was best on the cruise, not sure why it doesn't fill up? Food was good but the entertainment was outstanding, definitely wouldn't hesitate to go again if we were on another cruise with Cirque.
Dining Rooms, this was our first Freestyle experience on a cruise, have to say we missed getting to know the restaurant staff and the benefits you get when they understand your families habits/choices etc. I guess we could have gone to same table same restaurant each night to get some of this feel, however with first trying Manhattan, which we found too noisy, one night off the ship and 3 specialty meals half the cruise is gone already before you find a preferred dining spot, so didn't get this typical cruise interaction which we missed. The other disappointment with dining rooms was the food portions which were pretty small, we typically left and went past the buffet to grab something else to snack on, having said that on one night I did ask for a second entree and was given it without question.
French restaurant - One night the kids wanted to go with friends/counselors for dinner so we tried to go to the French restaurant for a special meal, downside was without reservation they only had outside seating, while this would have been fine the smoke smell from casino up one floor wasn't conducive to us enjoying that so somewhat off-putting for meals.
Buffet - Good selection however gets a bit crowded on mornings in port, so timing is critical otherwise you can find yourself walking around for 10 mins trying to find a table.
Bars - Great service at all bars from staff, wait at the Martini bar was usually long, maybe because of complexity of drinks however also always seemed to be short on staff. Ice bar a novelty but not really a $100 odd worth for two adults and two kids...
Ship overall was great, plenty of activities, elevators get a bit crowded at times but that's to be expected, we arrived before 12 for embarkation and were onboard in less than an hour, no delays on debarkation either.
Ports were great, we self toured Warnemunde (didn't like the thought of the 6+ hours travel involved with Berlin), Tallin taxis were easy to get around, toured with SPG in St Petersburg who were great, taxi into Helsinki for $20 and caught train into Stockholm (follow the blue line from ship), and thoroughly enjoyed all the ports. As we'd read Immigration/debarkation for tours etc. is somewhat of a nightmare in Russia, so allow an 1-1/2+ hours for that process on the first day, however that was a minor inconvenience as we were prepared.
Entertainment - Went to a few shows, enjoyed Cirque probably the most, especially with the kids. Burn the floor was well Choreographed and enjoyable, left the magic show after an hour, the talking in several languages, whilst I admire the talent, we felt distracted from and seemed to be padding for the show, I think after an hour we'd only seen 3 tricks! And we'd rate Rock of Ages as OK.
Overall enjoyed the ship and activities, ports were great, kids were well catered for, felt Freestyle dining had it's positives and negatives, ship and cabins well appointed and staff overall great, will cruise with NCL again.
Mini-Suite with Large Balcony, one of our biggest negatives for the cruise was the balcony (hence my 'AVG' rating, otherwise good), or more particularly the behavior of higher balconies, particularly Haven Suite guests. EVERY time we left port we were unable to sit/stand on our balcony (which had 1/3 cover), without having food rain down on us, once I even had empty drink dregs/ice tipped on me! We and other balcony cabins could look up and see Haven guest throwing food to the gulls, as these cabins and the deck extend out further we ended up getting 1/2 this food on us, many guests were calling out to them to stop above however we were all ignored day after day, gave up after a few days and missed what's normally an enjoyable way to sit have a drink and depart a port.
Nice relaxing day and town to walk around if not doing the Trek to Berlin.
Enjoyed walking around Tallin old town, caught taxi from there to the Seaplane/Submarine museum which made for an interesting afternoon.
Taxi into port, nice town, not a huge amount of time, big tent back at ship seemed to have better souvenir prices than we saw in town.
Excellent two day private tour of St Petersburg with Daniel as our guide, tour moved at the pace we wanted and we were able to do specific things that we wanted to do in St Petersburg which we couldn't have done in a group situation. Highly Recommended.View All 204 Private Tour Reviews
Wife and daughters had a memorable evening at the Russian Ballet.View All 99 Russian Ballet Show Reviews
Stayed a few days in Copenhagen, enjoyed town, bike riding and the sights though Copenhagen is an expensive destination.
Walked to train, 15-20 minutes walk, just follow the blue line on the road, train was fast and clean, easy to get around, enjoyed the Vasa museum and Abba museum, trams and ferries in town were free with the train ticket, so the $10 each spent got us around all day in Stockholm which was a fascinating city.