The NCL SUN is a ship of a size we prefer. It is easy to find ones way around, and deck 6 offers a fine walking deck with views of whatever is out there. We like the buffet dining areas for the variety they offer and we no longer even bring dress up clothes. Saves on luggage space that way! Besides I never have enough time to do all the things I want without having to "get ready "for dinner. On NCL we can do our own thing the way we like.
Our final port was Ponta del Gado in the Azores. This newly built cruise ship section makes it easy to walk from the ship to the city. A long walkway follows the water where one can watch fishing boats or sail boats or water polo players. Cobblestone walkways in the main city mean wear good shoes. Many interesting shops here with a cash only policy. The black and white stone work will fascinate you.
The Arts and Crafts classes offered started with paper flowers and this led us into pre packaged amazing kits. These when made up make great gifts for crew members one really felt were special friends.
Deck 6A id very quiet but at first hard to locate! The shower felt larger than on some ships. Always clean and well supplied. We had an inside cabin and rarely heard fellow passengers. Even had a small couch in the cabin and a desk. The color TV was not working well but we spent little time in the room.
A very easy walk to the city center. Flat, well signed and downstairs in the cruise terminal is free internet! We chose to take a canal ride and bought tickets from the info desk in the terminal then found the correct boat in town. Most people speak English so just ask. One needs to be wary when crossing a street for bikes speed by and buses and trolleys too. The boat ride provided an over view of the city with historical info, stories of who lived where, and was delightful. It lasted about 70 minutes and there were many photo ops.
We actually stayed in the town of Blankenberge which is the port near Brugge. here we walked to the main street from the free shuttle bus stop. Cobblestones make it rough walking so wear good shoes. The shopping street offered many cafes and chocolate shops. If you like licorice, this is the country that has so many kinds you will be overwhelmed! And it is good.
We walked the boardwalk near the ocean on a beautiful sunny day with a perfect breeze. Children played in the water, flew kites and kicked soccer balls. This time of year the beach houses were mostly closed, I did find the outdoor market where one could buy clothing, food stuffs, jewels, cheese, shoes and pretty much whatever you wanted. Cash only so have Euros.
Many cafes were open in town with folks enjoying them. There is a lunch hour when shops close so plan accordingly.
I planned to walk to town and it is possible in about 15 minutes but getting there can be confusing. it felt like I was in the bad area of town but it was just the industrial section!
Main street Lisbon is enchanting with an archway to welcome you from the water. Modern shops line the pedestrian only street. Photo ops everywhere! Many outdoor cafes so find one on a side street for it will be less expensive.
I chose to walk a few miles that day and again the cobblestones tired my feet even with good shoes. A tree lined walkway runs up the center of the main street leading to a lovely park at its end. Check out the pigeons bathing in the stream in the park!
This time I did not take the cable car up the steep streets. From atop the hills one has good views of the city and the port.