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Norwegian Dawn Review

4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating
2,925 reviews
1 Award

Four stars

Review for Norwegian Dawn to the Western Caribbean
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First Time Cruiser • Age 20s

Rating by category

Value for Money
Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation

Additional details

Sail Date: Feb 2020
Cabin: Mid-Ship Inside

I didn't know much about cruises before booking this as my first (my plus one's second), and I started to get nervous once I saw poor reviews for the ship after paying in full. The food was better than I expected and always hot (we did no specialty dining - ate mostly in the Venetian) but my +1 had eaten lobster and filet frequently on his Carnival cruise so was a bit underwhelmed by the options. We weren't impressed by 95% of our servers. The room was decent for inside, our steward was excellent and made our bed twice each day. We didn't do many activities on board aside from every one of the shows, but we were only strongly interested in a handful of the other options per day. We would have liked to do some of the fitness classes or gameshows or tastings but weren't interested in paying extra. The pool area seemed too small for the ship. Our tender to Harvest Caye wasn't fun and the Tampa port staff for embarkation/disembark got the job done but the staff seemed rude. We didn't find the Sugarcane mojito bar until the last night, which was a bummer... head there first! This trip got the job done for the money.

Cabin Review

Mid-Ship Inside

The room was actually larger than expected (but still small of course). We picked a mid/aft inside and didn't feel near as much motion as higher and more forward areas of the ship.

Port Reviews


Puerto Langosta was just a ton of shops (not our style) so we went via taxi to Paradise Beach. The taxi driver was rude and irritated that he couldn't talk us into going further. Taxi prices were a bit higher here but we would definitely return to Paradise Beach again - the beachfront included water inflatables to play on, the water allowed for some snorkeling with decent visibility, and the pool was heated and large. The property never got too crowded. They encouraged us to spend $10 each on food/drink to go with our $3 per person admission (and since it was private I felt comfortable eating here) - our food was great.

Harvest Caye

The pool area was great, but the beach was murky (too murky for our own snorkeling) and the sand was full of shells and kind of painful. The tender trip on the Dawn's lifeboat tender boats was a bad experience. The coconut water was awesome!

Costa Maya

We took taxi over to Tipsy Turtle after being haggled by drivers there, which was fine. The number of locals walking past trying to sell items every couple minutes was tiresome, but the taxi was relatively cheap and the beach was pretty.


We ended up at a festival by accident in Ybor and it was a cool city to see. Go to Columbia restaurant and get the sangria!

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