First review, so please bear with me.
We were in Orlando, Florida in November 2009 visiting a family member and were wanting to go on a cruise while we were there. While choosing our cruise back home in Canada, it was clear we wanted to do NCL, as my parents and grandmother were on the older NCL Pride of Aloha back in 2009, and since we were new to cruising we weren't really aware of how good other cruise lines would be. It was down to between NCL Jewel, or NCL Sky. The Sky was doing 3 night Bahamas cruise to I think if i can remember: Nassau and Great Stirrup Cay (NCL's Private island in the Bahamas). Then there was the Jewel and that was doing 2 night cruise to just Great Stirrup Cay. We thought that 2 nights was good enough as we originally was coming down here to visit family.
Me, my father, my mother, and my grandmother drove from Orlando to Miami for 4 hours. We reached the Port of Miami with high anticipation and glided through security and check-in smoothly. At first, we just wanted to go to the stateroom and settle things down. We had chosen a mini suite as it was worth the few extra dollars to get that extra square footage. It was spacious and had a nice view of the sea. Easily, and comfortably could fit 4 people without feeling squished or packed in as staterooms do in newer ships with maximum capacity in the stateroom. Then, it was decided to go explore the ship. The atrium was beautiful and colourful. This ship was very modern even though it was already 4 years old; I felt as if it was brand new. As the ship was filling up, a lot of people came on that were in their 20's. They caused a riot on the ship and i wasn't happy with it. Because the families that came on this cruise did certainly did not pay for this. It was planned to leave at 5 pm like all the other ships were, but we had to wait, for some un-explained reason and did not leave until 7 pm. First night at sea, we were in the casual buffet dining area and i must say the selection is fantastic! They even had a special area just put out for kids with comfort foods that kids would like (e.g. chicken fingers, macaroni & cheese, hot dogs, hamburgers, fries etc.) As i was heading back to my table with 2 full plates, the food was sliding off of my plates and i thought what the heck is happening? And it was the ship rocking back and forth. I got sea sick and headed straight to the stateroom. I laid down for a while, as i was not going to let it ruin my night. I met up with the family and we went to the shops and did the casino for a while, but didn't want to stay up too late as we were supposed to be in port the next day. The next day we were supposed to wake up and be in Great Stirrup Cay but an announcement was made that the sea was too rough for us to proceed to the island and we were forced to head to Freeport, Bahamas instead. We all thought that is kind of stupid as Great Stirrup Cay was very close to Freeport and if we could make it here, then we couldn't of made it to Great Stirrup Cay? But first, we went to eat in the elegant dining room for some breakfast and through this big glass window you could see the beautiful clear crystal blue waters. We decided to get out and explore as it was our only port for this cruise. There was some shops, a Radisson hotel and beach and also a tiny casino. And half the shops were closed! When we reached port to get to the taxi area, we heard and talked to some passengers and they said that at Great Stirrup Cay there was supposed to be a big BBQ for all the passengers. We stayed on the island of Freeport all day, mostly on the beach, but did look through the open stores. When we got back to the ship, it was the last night before getting into Miami the next day. We enjoyed it by looking through the shops, and just exploring the rest of the ship. Overall, i would give this ship a 4/5. And the itinerary, 2.5/5. Thanks for taking the time to read this long review. The next cruises will be on NCL Epic that was in March of 2011, and Royal Caribbean Allure of the seas that was recently on September 2011. You can also see those reviews of the ships too. And now as of December 2011, I will be on Celebrity X Equinox on March 2012 and on the Disney Fantasy in March 2013 and will continue to take cruises in the near future. You can see those reviews as those dates pass. :)
There is nothing really to do here. Our ship only came here as we were cruising in hurricane season and the seas were too rough. All there is, is some shops, a Radisson hotel, and a beach. Very horrible experience and will never return.