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We did not really care for the Breakaway ship itself. Almost every single activity was held in the atrium, making it extremely loud and crowded and nearly impossible to find seating. Speaking of which, lots of uncomfortable seating in the public areas. We really hated that shows needed to be reserved on this ship, yet you still had to show up early to get good seating. It was an unnecessary, frustrating extra step. We've seen better shows on the smaller ships. Burn the Floor was really good, but Rock of Ages was just awkwardly inappropriate and unnecessarily distasteful. The Cirque show was great, but cost extra. As did a lot of things; we felt nickeled and dimed worse than any other cruise. Dining was good, but service was really hit or miss. Thankfully we found Edy early in the week who did a fantastic job taking care of us. The kid's program was seriously lacking on this trip. There was some serious miscommunication about our kids checking themselves in and out, which led to them getting kicked out once and forced to stay in another. The manager was rude and unhelpful, so we ended up talking to the cruise director about things. Thankfully, JC was much better at customer service and took care of us. But the fact that it got to that point was such a turnoff for both us and our kids. The ports of call were all good except for Harvest Caye. NCL's private island is nothing more than a commercialized, overpriced beach that doesn't even feel like you're in Belize. We much preferred when we used to go to Belize City. Overall, we still enjoyed our trip. The cruise director's staff did a great job as always and the games/shows were a lot of fun. But we weren't impressed with the Breakaway like we thought we'd be, and with the other issues we'd still probably try a different cruise line next time to see how they compared.

Underwhelming ship, mostly good ports

Norwegian Breakaway Cruise Review by sidebones

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: January 2019
  • Destination: Western Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Inside Stateroom
We did not really care for the Breakaway ship itself. Almost every single activity was held in the atrium, making it extremely loud and crowded and nearly impossible to find seating. Speaking of which, lots of uncomfortable seating in the public areas. We really hated that shows needed to be reserved on this ship, yet you still had to show up early to get good seating. It was an unnecessary, frustrating extra step. We've seen better shows on the smaller ships. Burn the Floor was really good, but Rock of Ages was just awkwardly inappropriate and unnecessarily distasteful. The Cirque show was great, but cost extra. As did a lot of things; we felt nickeled and dimed worse than any other cruise. Dining was good, but service was really hit or miss. Thankfully we found Edy early in the week who did a fantastic job taking care of us. The kid's program was seriously lacking on this trip. There was some serious miscommunication about our kids checking themselves in and out, which led to them getting kicked out once and forced to stay in another. The manager was rude and unhelpful, so we ended up talking to the cruise director about things. Thankfully, JC was much better at customer service and took care of us. But the fact that it got to that point was such a turnoff for both us and our kids. The ports of call were all good except for Harvest Caye. NCL's private island is nothing more than a commercialized, overpriced beach that doesn't even feel like you're in Belize. We much preferred when we used to go to Belize City. Overall, we still enjoyed our trip. The cruise director's staff did a great job as always and the games/shows were a lot of fun. But we weren't impressed with the Breakaway like we thought we'd be, and with the other issues we'd still probably try a different cruise line next time to see how they compared.
sidebones’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Ages 10 to 12
Service
Onboard Experience
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Cabin Review

Inside Stateroom
Cabin ID 8106
Cabin was a little awkward compared to other Norwegian ships. There was wasted shelf space that could've been added to the closet. The bathroom was also in serious need of a trash can. There was only one in the cabin. We asked our steward to please leave it in the bathroom, but we still had to move it every day.
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Costa Maya
    The water park was completely uncrowded, so time was not an issue. The zips into the water were a lot of fun; otherwise they all were the same. The slides weren't bad, but there weren't that many; definitely not like an American park. The buffet was extremely overpriced and not many were choosing to eat at the park. Overall, it was still enjoyable but we'd choose differently next time.
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  • Dolphin Swim & Encounter
    Dolphin experience was a lot of fun. The facility was nice and the included food/drinks were good. However, the snorkeling was not any good. The worst part were the pictures. While they did capture some good ones, the pricing was outrageous. Literally hundreds at the cheapest. We still decided to buy some since this was a once in a lifetime experience, then we found out they don't take Discover. Unfortunately, that's all we had with us. We were given the option to buy them once back home, but now that we're not in the moment we're debating whether it's really worth the $300??
    View All 415 Dolphin Swim & Encounter Reviews
  • Turtle Farm
    The turtle farm was a lot of fun. You get to hold the babies and swim with some of the larger ones. The tour group was extremely too large, though, and it was difficult to have time for everything. We'd love to go back and just explore on our own, as we had no time to explore the gift shop or eat.
    View All 306 Turtle Farm Reviews
  • Harvest Caye
    This port was incredibly commercialized and expensive. My son wanted a stone chess set that they were asking $120 for; we found it in Mexico later for $30. It may be Belizeans working the shops there, but nothing said "local" about the place. The beach was crowded and the water didn't look great. There was absolutely nothing to do here without going to the mainland. NCL used to tender to Belize City before they built their private little island. We miss going there. Harvest Caye was not even worth stepping foot off the ship.
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  • New Orleans
    This rating is for the embarkation experience. The port was extremely difficult to find, as New Orleans signage all led you in the wrong direction. We had to hunt down a baggage handler. The terminal felt extremely closed in, and the lines were ridiculously long. We've never waited so long to board. As a result, NCL did not even take our embarkation photo. Everything was very crowded and disorganized.
    View All 635 New Orleans Cruise Port Reviews
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  • Beach
    Bamboo Beach was just ok. The tapas they served weren't good and we didn't particularly care for the drinks either. The kids had a lot of fun in the ocean, but the beach really wasn't that good for swimming. The staff was pretty attentive and the dancers were nice, but it was super crowded by the time we got there--not one lounge chair to be found.
    View All 83 Beach Reviews
  • Dunn's River Falls
    The falls were super fun, but extremely crowded. Prepare to wait awhile and have others in your pictures. Our guides were great, but it looked like not all of the others were. It looked like there were other things to do at the park. We'd love to come back and just spend the day there. It's also A LOT CHEAPER to go there on your own, versus a booked excursion.
    View All 258 Dunn's River Falls Reviews
  • Gumbalina Park
    Park was nice, even though it rained. The cost of pictures was rather deceiving. They had a beach there, but we instead drove to a different one on this excursion. That beach was fine, but the food was no good. I would enjoy going back and just spending the day at Gumbalimba.
    View All 167 Gumbalina Park Reviews