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600 Miami to Bahamas Cruise Reviews

The Norwegian sky was a nice cruise line but not what it was talked up to being. The rooms are a little outdated. We had a balcony and it could of used some updating. The buffet was ok, the restaurants were better. Crew members were nice ... Read More
The Norwegian sky was a nice cruise line but not what it was talked up to being. The rooms are a little outdated. We had a balcony and it could of used some updating. The buffet was ok, the restaurants were better. Crew members were nice but would not go over and beyond. Overall it was a good cruise, nothing special. It’s good for a quick getaway but nothing crazy, or out of this world. Also, the sheets in the rooms are changed during your whole stay. The sheets should be changed if not everyday, every other day. The sky needs to put more shows on board, and the club needs to be upgraded. The cruise needs more activities for people, it was kind of boring. The lines to get a drink were too long at times (most of the times). When on vacation I don’t want to wait for a drink. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We chose this cruise for a bachelorette party, we were glad to not have to worry about logistics. Overall it was a good experience for the price we paid. Pros: -The chefs table dining experience was incredible and I highly recommend ... Read More
We chose this cruise for a bachelorette party, we were glad to not have to worry about logistics. Overall it was a good experience for the price we paid. Pros: -The chefs table dining experience was incredible and I highly recommend it. - the staff was friendly and accommodating - The cabanas at coco cay are 100% worth it - The piano bar is incredible. - The on site activities director was extremely fun and engaging Cons: -The ship was built in the 90s and is in desperate need of a reno. -The ship smelled strongly of sewage on the 2nd and 3rd decks. -there was a lot of waiting in line, kids running around, and crowds. -drinks are expensive and watered down and service is slow. - we were at coco cay during low tide and it turned the beach into a marsh which is not conducive to swimming. - Almost missed my return flight that i booked with the air to sea package. I was ready and got in line to to get off the boat at 7 to make my 1030 flight. We didn't get off the boat until 745, and I waited for my shuttle until 9:00!! I hadn't grabbed a water or coffee or breakfast because I didn't want to miss my shuttle or flight, when I asked about when it would arrive they would respond with "it's on its way, you should be fine." Had I known it was so late I would have gotten breakfast on the ship and gotten a cab to the airport instead. I was extremely annoyed. I arrived at my gate 15 minutes before my flight which was extremely stressful. Overall, if you're not picky about your accommodations and are looking for a getaway where you don't need to plan anything this is a good value for the money. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
The trip was a weekend getaway that coincided well with the long weekend for Easter. Getting in and out of the ship was easy. However I was rather disappointed with the size of the cabins- really small including the bathroom which are ... Read More
The trip was a weekend getaway that coincided well with the long weekend for Easter. Getting in and out of the ship was easy. However I was rather disappointed with the size of the cabins- really small including the bathroom which are usually small on ships but this was really tiny. Also the bathroom had a wet rag kind of smell that never really went away. The food was fine but nothing exceptional. We did use the French Bistro and were surprised the meal was not better considering we had to pay an extra fee as it was a la carte. I would have preferred a flat rate for the restaurant as this was really nickel and diming .Most cruise ships we book the restaurants and the meals are really fine dining. This was not. The main dining room we found the portions unusually small which was a surprise. For example I ordered the Coquille st. Jaques and it was 4 really tiny scallops on a teaspoon of sauce. Not even served in a clamshell. They could have used the medium sized scallops. the breakfast was good however the setup is not conducive to large crowds. The people ordering omelettes held up the whole line for those wanting just a simple continental choice. I would suggest separating the stations. I.e. Breads/pastries, Fruits/yogurt cereal, Hot station and a separate space for those omelette lovers. Use either round stations or separate them out better in the restaurant if it must be a line. This was a very loud bunch in terms of passengers. Maybe it was the price but there were a lot of large groups who needed lessons in personal space so as not to intrude on others wanting a relaxing space for some downtime. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
A "cold front" made it rocky and windy so CocoCay was cancelled. The tenders could not safely handle the roll or the tide. I've sailed on 4 different lines, multiple times and this was the only time that some sort of ... Read More
A "cold front" made it rocky and windy so CocoCay was cancelled. The tenders could not safely handle the roll or the tide. I've sailed on 4 different lines, multiple times and this was the only time that some sort of concession was made under these circumstances. There was a short apology citing "our safety" and that was it. My point is, if CocoCay is not accessible this time of year or any time 95%+ of the times, then it should not be listed as a port. Essentially false advertisement. The staff was friendly, and there have been areas updated when they stretched the ship. Other places ( cabin ) is showing wear and tear. I was in Suite 8672, aft. Food on buffet was real basic, and late night grill was also limited. Dinner in My Fair Lady was decent, but portions may be small after a full day in the water. Sound system on deck by the pool was like standing 3rd row at a bad rock concert. They were entirely too loud, and quality was poor. Announcement were almost inaudible due to volume/speaker placement/ accent of captain. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
A few friends and I decided to leave the men at home and take a girl’s trip to the Caribbean. Overall, our experience was very good. Octavian and Dante were our dining room attendants, and they could not have been any better. We decided ... Read More
A few friends and I decided to leave the men at home and take a girl’s trip to the Caribbean. Overall, our experience was very good. Octavian and Dante were our dining room attendants, and they could not have been any better. We decided to book two shore excursions in Nassau. The first was the Glass Bottom Boat tour. Our tour guide was Chevron (Chevy). He was absolutely fabulous!! Our second excursion (sunset cruise) was canceled due to high winds. We were disappointed that we missed it, but glad that safety comes first. We decided to take a taxi to Atlantis. This is my second time to Nassau. I will always suggest taking a taxi somewhere. The taxi drivers are always full of information and very entertaining. Our day at Coco Cay was canceled due to high winds. The next day we were in Key West. The Hop on and Off Conch Train was the excursion that we signed up for here. If it could have been done over, we would have saved our money. The name is deceptive. If you want an informative tour, this is great. We were wanting to hear some information about each stop, hop off, explore, and hop back on. This is not how it is. So, we stopped at the first hop off and got an Uber to be able to see and explore what we wanted. We loved Key West. The main thing that we did not like was the disorganization of the disembarkation. We had an early afternoon flight, so, we chose to do the self assist disembarkation. We were in line to get off the ship by 7:00am. It took a while for the ship to be cleared, and I understand that it was not Royal Caribbean’s fault. The main objection I have is that we had been standing in line for almost two hours, and they let people with shore excursions off before the people that had been waiting in line for so long. Also, there was no clear instructions on how to get off the ship. The lines were intermingled. It was very hard to distinguish which line to follow. I have been on other cruise lines that were MUCH more organized. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
As always, the staff was wonderful. However, the spring breakers were overly loud and obnoxious. If you are looking for a relaxing time don't go during spring break. The only comparison I have to this cruise is a nine day ... Read More
As always, the staff was wonderful. However, the spring breakers were overly loud and obnoxious. If you are looking for a relaxing time don't go during spring break. The only comparison I have to this cruise is a nine day Norwegian Dawn cruise from two years ago. The Buffet was average, the Dawn cruise had more variety and better selection. This time the buffet only had about eight selections to choose from and most just were not to my taste. The buffet in the back of the boat seemed to always have Hamburgers, HotDogs, and Fries. The complementary dinning rooms were nice. Part of the menu changed each night and the selections were good enough. The food we had there was better than the buffet. However, the rambunctious spring breakers made dinning a nightmare. There was actually a guy passing out at the table and the waiter kept pouring wine regardless. The dinning area was so loud that the four of us at the table couldn't hear one another. The buffet area seemed quieter, I assumed since no adult beverages were served there, but the food was better in the dinning rooms. The last stop was canceled, they said due to high wind and seas. We had planned on that as our beach day. The entertainment was OK. I have seen similar productions at high school drama team events. The comic was very racist, all of the jokes poked fun at white people. It just wasn't funny. Overall, the entertainment on this cruise was not very entertaining. It was so disappointing since we talked the people with us into going and told them how great the entertainment was on the Dawn. My guess is this is the only way they can do an "open bar" is to offset the expense by lowering the money spent on entertainment. The Dazzles night club may have been entertaining, if it were not full of drunk guys walking around with their elbows out purposely knocking drinks out of people's hands. One guy did it to the wrong person and was punched in the face for the offense. Again, typical spring break stuff. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Our great friends are experienced cruisers and recommended we try it out. Loved going someplace warm and tropical in March-just our college daughter and myself. The overall experience was good but i could have been done a day sooner.(3 ... Read More
Our great friends are experienced cruisers and recommended we try it out. Loved going someplace warm and tropical in March-just our college daughter and myself. The overall experience was good but i could have been done a day sooner.(3 night-4 day Bahamas Cruise) We did not get in at our last port due to weather and spent about 30 hours at sea (not too terribly rough) just windy and boring. If you like eating, drinking and laying in the sun you will love this cruise. The bartenders and staff were AMAZING. Definitely got my $$ worth on the all you can drink. They made $$ on me in the food and casino departments :{ We tried to stay w/the buffet options and they were better than average but not so much inspired Quality and safety seemed great though. The comedy show was good and the Casino was OK. There was a decent variety of games but the training level for the dealers left a lot to be desired. Dance club was fun for our college daughter and I even went for a bit our last night (i'm 50 yr. if that's helpful LOL) Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
We chose this cruise because we were limited on the number of days we had available and because we knew we wanted the Bahamas to be one of our ports, so this one fit the bill. The ship was 3 hours late on arrival, so after we arrived we ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we were limited on the number of days we had available and because we knew we wanted the Bahamas to be one of our ports, so this one fit the bill. The ship was 3 hours late on arrival, so after we arrived we were bused to the Bayside Marketplace. It was a fun place to hang out with plenty of shops and restaurants, but we would have much rather the cruise been on time. This caused us to miss a meal on board and have to purchase our own meal instead. RCCL provided each guest with a $25 on board credit to make up for the inconvenience, but we didn't feel this was quite adequate. Given the small amount of time we were going to have on the ship anyway, missing what ended up being 4 daytime hours was pretty significant. We dined in the Starlight Dining Room every night for dinner. We found the menu to be adequate, but not extraordinary. We enjoyed the shrimp cocktail, crab cakes, beef short rib, and pork loin. We did not pay extra for the lobster or surf and turf options, and we were saddened that this wasn't a part of the regular menu at least one night... those HAVE been options on other cruises we have taken for the same value. Although the wait staff was good (meaning they never messed up our order or took too long), we were disappointed in their overall friendliness. They didn't appear very happy at any point of any evening. We ate breakfast every morning in Windjammer because it was faster (buffet style). We enjoyed the large variety of fresh fruit options, but were not impressed with the pastries (although there were many pastries, they all seemed very dry and hard). The scrambled eggs were never fully cooked, the regular "omelets" had very little cheese and meat, and they only provided one plate of bacon (which of course is everyone's favorite and made the line very long). By the 3rd morning they opened up a create-your-own-omelet station, which was delicious, but also had a pretty long line. They had plenty of beverage options (coffee, multiple milk options, apple/orange juice) in the morning, but the coffee was always pretty strong. Our room was probably our favorite part of the trip. We were in 9664 which was a great choice for our family of 4. It has a little extra space compared to most rooms and provides a corner area for the bunk beds for our teenage kids. The bathroom was small, but that's expected. There was enough closet space, but no mini-fridge to keep our beverages cold. We had to ask for an ice bucket, which never lasted very long and only kept a couple of drinks cold. We were also given a bucket with a large crack that leaked all over our counter and got lots of papers wet. The beds, even the bunk beds, were very comfy, and for the most part we slept very well. We enjoyed our day in the Bahamas. We went outside of the cruise terminal area and rented two scooters for our family of four. We don't typically book excursions with our vacations because we know we can find a better deal on our own. We rode our scooters up and down the island, visiting Love Beach, the Caves, Paradise Island, and Cabbage Beach. We stopped at a place called Nirvana for lunch, and while the food wasn't great, we loved the beach. The water was so beautiful, and there were conch shells everywhere. But although it's fun to find them, they won't let you take them back on the ship. We enjoyed Cabbage Beach, and found a place just past the Atlantis area to hang out. We rented a jet ski, 2 chairs, and an umbrella on the beach, and bought an all-you-can-drink coconut drink. We took turns riding on the jet ski and lounging in the sun. The water was still a little too cold to fully enjoy being in the water. We had to return our scooters by 5, and the ship didn't leave until 11:30 that night, so we were disappointed that everything closed around the cruise terminal at 4:30 or so. We heard that Atlantis became a "free-for-all" of sorts after 5:30 or so, so we took a taxi and enjoyed some time walking around the resort and seeing all of the aquarium. The aquarium tunnels and viewing areas are pretty neat, and worth checking out, but there's no way I would pay full price. At that time of evening, everything is free and you can just walk around at your own leisure, but the water park is closed. Our day at sea was pretty boring and uneventful. We had breakfast, brunch, and dinner on board, played in the casino while our kids played in the arcade, spent some time in the hot tub, played some ping pong, and enjoyed a nap. We tried to enjoy some music in the lounge, but it seemed like every time we walked in, they were just finishing their last song. Key West was a little cool while were there, so the beaches weren't very appealing. They appeared small and not too great anyway. I think the cool thing about Key West must be the shopping and bar atmosphere and the boat excursions. There are plenty of options for boating trips for snorkeling, scuba, dolphin watching, fishing, and sailing, and the next time we go back we will definitely do one of these. By the time we found them, we didn't really have enough time to do anything before we had to be back on board. We rented a golf cart for 4 (which was a much better deal than taking the trolley because we could go where we wanted, it was on our own time, AND it was cheaper!), and really enjoyed driving around. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Choose Royal Caribbean based on feedback that it's a better cruise line then Carnival. The crew onboard were very friendly and supportive throughout the whole trip. We stayed in balcony stateroom 7038. Nice location with no noise ... Read More
Choose Royal Caribbean based on feedback that it's a better cruise line then Carnival. The crew onboard were very friendly and supportive throughout the whole trip. We stayed in balcony stateroom 7038. Nice location with no noise issues. Dining: We are vegetarian lactose-intolerant and had little food options. Main dining had everything covered in butter. The cruise line needs to accommodate for all types of people. If we were vegan, this cruise would be horrible. No options at all. FYI, if you are a couple make sure you request a 2-seater table. The cruise line put us and 2 other couples together at 1 table. Very uncomfortable and awkward. Poor judgement for the cruise line. Finally got moved after I complained. Lines: Everywhere we went there was always a long line. Between checking in for the cruise, to dining, and exiting the cruise ship. Things took forever. Ship was packed. Excursions: Private Beach Deluxe Island with Lunch - Terrible. Food was horrible and the Island was packed. Stay away from this excursion. Cococay - Bungalows were amazing. Worth every penny. Staff were great and tons to do on the island. Best day of the entire trip. Key West - Paddle boarding was great. Great tour guide from Lazy Dog. Would book this tour again as well. Miami - Hop on and Off Bus was excellent and transfer to Miami Airport was great. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
We chose this cruise because we were with a group. This ship is a bit small and lacks things to do unless your agenda is to find a place to sit down and drink... with little else to do. They would benefit from some things to do while you ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we were with a group. This ship is a bit small and lacks things to do unless your agenda is to find a place to sit down and drink... with little else to do. They would benefit from some things to do while you drink. The food was pretty decent overall. In particular, the evening dining meal was excellent. The wait staff was SUPERB! They were very attentive and went the "extra mile" to make sure that things went well for us. As far as the ports of call, they were as good as Royal Cariibean could be expected to make them. The ports were clean and the signage was clear. Roy Car. was able to dock and leave on schedule (As far as I know). The only problem that we experienced was related to the "Spring Break" crowd. We're no prudes, but the spring break crowd made it difficult at times - particularly as it related to the swim suits (or lack of them) that were worn. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Myself and my boyfriend, both in our early 20's booked this cruise months prior to sailing. We wanted a short getaway and were attracted to the all inclusive package and variety of ports throughout the stay. The ship was beautiful ... Read More
Myself and my boyfriend, both in our early 20's booked this cruise months prior to sailing. We wanted a short getaway and were attracted to the all inclusive package and variety of ports throughout the stay. The ship was beautiful and better than expected. We had an inside stateroom and it was perfectly sized for the two of us. We thought that we wanted a balcony, but after seeing another couples room, we decided we actually liked ours better. It was nice being able to sleep at any time of the day/night and not hear any noise or have any light. If it were more than 4 days, I would have wanted a balcony for sure, but we were barely using the room except for sleep, so it was perfect. Dining was fantastic. So many options and the restaurants food was like going out to a restaurant. Something that I would say is that we experienced AGE DISCRIMINATION the entire trip. This cruise took place during spring break, in which, myself and my boyfriend were not a part of. The bar tenders and staff were supposedly advised to "prioritize the older guests". This meant that everyone under the age of 30 was thrown into 30+ minute lines to wait for drinks on and off the ship at the private island. Meanwhile, adults could go up and sit at the bar and skip the line whenever they wanted a drink. I understand that we are young adults, but it is unacceptable for Norwegian to favor certain members of the cruise. I was not sloppy drunk. I was not there to party. I wanted to sit at the bar and have a drink while talking casually to other people. Instead, I was shuttled onto lines of 20 or more sloppy drunk college students. After 2/4 days of dealing with that nonsense, we finally complained to Raymond the bar manager, who (after multiple times of us complaining), finally told the bartenders that we were not part of spring break and could skip the lines. We still encountered opposition from other bartenders throughout the trip (they would be downright rude and tell us that since we were "spring breakers", which we weren't, we had to stand in line)... To me, this should not have been an issue to begin with. I saved up my hard earned money to go on this cruise just like every other adult sailing with us. I was treated like a second class citizen and will be complaining to Norwegian personally. Another issue was that the cruise was also hosting a "College Party", which was an outside agency that booked private parties throughout the cruise. This was un-announced until we left port at the cruise. I would not have cared, but the college party group rented out different spaces on the cruise ship, in which, only people who booked the cruise through this outside agency could attend. This meant that many of the scheduled programs for the cruise were suddenly cancelled because the college party had rented out the space and was hosting its own private party. Cruise ports were ok. The private island was amazing (besides for the 45 minute lines at every single bar, and the rude staff working at the bars). Nassau and Freeport were overwhelming. We did not know what to do if we didn't go on an excursion, so I would recommend excursions. We ended up listening to the Bahemians on each island and got thrown into taxis and went to random beaches. The beaches were ok. I would go with more of a plan if I go next time. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
For what its worth, I have only been on one other cruise, 25 years ago, so I might not be the target audience here. The staff were all wonderful. Charming, and kind, willing to help. Spa services were great, fairly priced, a good ... Read More
For what its worth, I have only been on one other cruise, 25 years ago, so I might not be the target audience here. The staff were all wonderful. Charming, and kind, willing to help. Spa services were great, fairly priced, a good value. Food was pedestrian at best. Chops was good and a great value, the chef table also good and a great value. Not anything I cant get any night of the week where I live and a sort of mid range experience vs the high end food available for anyone in a major market. The entertainment was ok, music was dated, being a little drunk helps a lot. The piano bar was the best. Casino was solid, though I was on a cold streak. Their private beach, is whatever, im not a beach guy, i dont want to get up early, so cruising may not be for me. Taking down the food in a rush, closing some dining options in a rush, just not the "do whatever, whenever" that im looking for in an experience like this. So overall, it was ok, and ok was what i expected so I cant complain. I'd love to have something that knocked my socks off, but this wasnt it. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
I have cruised Royal many times and always had a wonderful time. But this cruise had it's ups and downs. From bad communication and lack of knowledge by the cruise members to the overall condition of the ship. Food that was served ... Read More
I have cruised Royal many times and always had a wonderful time. But this cruise had it's ups and downs. From bad communication and lack of knowledge by the cruise members to the overall condition of the ship. Food that was served with a piece of plastic on it and never getting the temperature of the steaks right. Breakfast that included 400 fifteen year old girls trying to get to the buffet at the same time and then not leaving the tables when they were done. While getting driven to our beach bed on CoCo Cay the driver went into the brush, snapped off a branch that hit our friend scrapping his leg and never stopping or offering an apology. The cruise did have good moments also. The servers, bar staff and entertainment was very good. The ports of call went OK. I have cruised on Royal many times, but I'm not sure I will cruise with them again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
Pros Good itinerary with Nassau, Coco Cay, and Key West. I really enjoyed Coco Cay for the huge availability of lounge chairs (many shaded under palms), nearby bathrooms and bars. Lunch had a lot of options (the ribs were definitely ... Read More
Pros Good itinerary with Nassau, Coco Cay, and Key West. I really enjoyed Coco Cay for the huge availability of lounge chairs (many shaded under palms), nearby bathrooms and bars. Lunch had a lot of options (the ribs were definitely the best option). The straw market had good prices. The evening meal in the dining room was definitely the best food and our wait staff (Keisha and Malvino) were outstanding and attended to our every request, going above and beyond so that we enjoyed our meals. Our room steward, Steven also was outstanding and kept our room in tip-top shape. Cons I was frustrated with their deluxe drink package requirements. My friend, who I shared the room with, can definitely outdrink me. She wanted to get the deluxe drink package since it allowed her to drink all she wanted for one price. But for me, it was not a good value. Royal Caribbean REQUIRES all adults in the room to purchase the package if one person purchases. I know they are worried about one person paying for the package and then supplying their companion with free drinks, but this rule is not fair to non-drinkers or those who only have a couple drinks a day. Then, to add insult to injury, we found that they were charging one of us for drinks even though we had the package, so we had to go stand in the long guest services line EVERY day to have the charges removed! We kept asking why this was happening and why they couldn't fix the problem so we didn't have to keep dealing with it every day. Their response was “It’s no problem, just come by each day and we will remove the charges”. Well, to us it WAS a problem because we did not enjoy standing in line every day to deal with this. NOTE: the deluxe package is advertised as including all alcoholic drinks up to $12, fresh squeezed orange juice, and specialty coffee, but what they don't tell you, is that you are limited to 1 specialty coffee per day. I like to keep an eye on my billing each day to be sure of what I am spending. The only way to check the billing is to get in line at guest services to have an invoice printed. My last cruise on Carnival, I was able to see my charges on the TV or at kiosks around the ship. The night before our excursion, we had not received any information on where to be or what time or anything. When we asked about it, we were told the tickets should have been in our room and if they weren't, then we would have to go to Guest Services to pick them up! Yup, another opportunity to stand in line at Guest Services again! Also, towels had to be picked up for the excursion at the pool. I liked the way my previous Carnival cruise provided everything we needed (towels, etc.) for an excursion the night before, in our room. Ship is a little worse for the wear with dirty looking, frayed carpet, scuffed up furniture, etc. This really wasn't any big deal to me, but some folks might not like that. With exception of evenings in the dining room, food was underwhelming. I wonder if cruise lines are lowering their standards on food to encourage you to pay more for the specialty restaurants? Conclusion I spent way too much of my vacation in line at Guest Services! Therefore, I'm not sure I would cruise with Royal Caribbean again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
OK. Coming out with anything but A++++ reviews of anything Disney can subject you to a backlash that makes coming out as a Trump supporter pale in comparison. We have many friends who are Disney addicts and have been on numerous DCL ... Read More
OK. Coming out with anything but A++++ reviews of anything Disney can subject you to a backlash that makes coming out as a Trump supporter pale in comparison. We have many friends who are Disney addicts and have been on numerous DCL cruises as well as numerous annual trips to the parks. Yeah, we aren't "those" people. Don't get me wrong, we LOVE Disney, but it isn't like air and water is to life with us. Taking a DCL cruise was a bucket list item for us and with the kids getting older, now was the time. Found a good rate (for a Disney cruise "good rate" is kinda subjective) over 2 school holidays and we went ahead and booked it. Arrived the night before and stayed at the Hampton Inn Brickell in downtown Miami and it was awesome. Perfect pre or post cruise hotel. 15 min drive to the port and 35 minutes later we were on the boat. Now is Disney can just figure out a way to get the park lines to move that fast! Once on the boat, we immediately went to the pool decks to let the kids start swimming and once we saw the pools, our hearts sunk. We knew the kids swim areas were small on the ship, but we didn't realize they were THIS small. Kiddie pool was maybe 15 ft across and at any given time there would be 20-30 kids running around screaming, splashing, fall on eachother, elbowing each other, etc. It was like a kiddie Thunderdome and watching my 7 year old autistic son try to survive that environment was more stressful than Id have liked. The main pool wasn't much better. VERY small and at any given time packed with tons of kids to the point where you could hardly see the water for all the kids and life jackets. This is what I don't understand. Disney has more money than most small countries and can afford to build whatever they want. They build a boat to hold 2700 people, of which an easy 1500 will be kids, and make the pools smaller than what you'd find in a run down apartment complex. On the "at sea" day, it was truly a nightmare with every child on the boat in and around the small pools. Im sure Disney has some sort of reasoning behind this, and Id love to know what it was. The 2 water slides were ok but always packed too. Ultimately, we were VERY disappointed in that. As far as the room and the rest of the ship, it was very nice. The room was by the aft elevators and was in the perfect spot. Easy walk up or down a cpl floors to get to all the restaurants and the pool decks since they were all in the aft part of the ship. The room was very nice and clean. Beds were amazing. Split bathrooms was a genius idea and having the balcony was a welcome escape of the madness every now and then. Food was BY FAR the best Ive ever eaten. ANYWHERE. Heard DCL does their food up well, but never expected this. They could take the lunch buffet to any casino in Vegas and serve it for dinner and charge $100 per person all night long. And that was lunch!! Dinner was even better. Cabanas was just amazing. Every type of food you could possibly want. Dishes from all over the world made it an adventure every time we went to eat. I got to try alot of dishes Id never had before. Asian, Indian, Mediterranean, you name it. Plus piles of fresh shrimp and stone crab claws and snow crab legs at each meal. Absolutely beyond compare. The sit down restaurants were great too. Lumiere's and Animator's Palate were as promised. Especially AP. We knew it would be fun, but seeing it in person made it even better. Having the wait staff rotate with you nightly to different restaurants was a great idea. They knew what the kids wanted and didn't want and treated us like old friends. This was a smart move by Disney. Ice cream and pizza was the one area where we came out ahead. Kids easily ate 40 ice cream cones over 4 days and we kept the pizza place in business. Not the best pizza, but it filled a void when you were hungry. Room service was good. the BLT was a big hit with us. The steak panini was great too. Would have liked to have a few more choices, but what we had was good. As for drinks in the room, bring your own soft drinks or be prepared to pay for them with room service. Knowing the kids would inevitably want a soft drink while in the room and knowing I wouldn't want to walk up to the pool desk to the soda fountain, we brought a pack of 8 oz pepsi bottles with us. Was definitely a smart move. As for the ship, incredibly clean and well kept. Never saw garbage or anything dirty. Public areas were as clean as your stateroom. After a cpl of days, the Disney themed music kinda begins to wear on you. For the first day or 2 its fun, but after hearing songs from Mary Poppins 500 times while walking around the ship, jumping off becomes a viable option. I didn't go on a Disney cruise expecting to hear hard rock or even most pop music around the pool because most of it isn't really what Id call kid friendly, and Im ok with that. Instead Disney has a playlist of about 25 songs that are palatable to families and plays it on a loop. Over and over and over again. I am a huge U2 fan, but you can only hear "Beautiful Day" so many times before you wished Bono never wrote that song. Again, small things, but when you can't get in the pools and are relegated to sitting on a chair watching the kids, pool music was all we had. The entertainment. Disney really stresses and PR's their kids clubs. They looked very fun and there were always kids in there, but my 12 year old daughter had no desire to go in one by herself and they aren't really set up to take special needs kids, so as a result we didn't use them. As a result, we felt like there wasn't much else to do activity wise. At night after dinner we literally wandered around the ship to pass the time while we waited for our stateroom to be turned down for the night. We did go to 2 of the live shows in the theater and the kids really enjoyed them. Very much Disney on Ice type shows...without the ice. We did get treated to many showings of Black Panther since it opened while we were on the cruise, but since Im really not amped about the movie to begin with, we didn't go. They had movies playing frequently in 2 theaters and for some, that's a great option but if you didn't really care for Marvel and Star Wars movies (my wife and daughter could care less) your options were thin movie wise. Character appearances seemed pretty regular, but we skipped out on them. We have plenty of character photos from our times in the parks. Alcohol. This is a big thing for me. Not because I want to get drunk, but I like to have a few drinks, especially when Im on vacation. Drink prices were pretty good and they had several packages for beer or wine. We bought a beer pkg the first day which came with 24 16oz beers of my choice, and a DCL cooler for $130. Yeah, thats alot of money, but if you stop and do the math and consider the convenience of not having to flag down a waiter or go to the bar for every drink (and pay another service charge each trip), it was worth it. Plus all the beers fit in the room fridge and our steward regularly brought us ice for the cooler. it was a very nice fabric soft sided cooler too, so having that by the pool and on Castaway Cay was great. DCL lets you bring on beer or wine and I brought a cpl of bottles of wine and my wife and I enjoyed them in the evenings on the balcony. We'd order a cheese plate from room service and it made a nice pre dinner snack with the wine. Castaway Cay. Very well laid out island with alot of potential. Packing 2700 people on the beaches they have makes for some very congested areas. We were able to find a place a little away from the crowds, which made it better. Water was pretty cold (didn't stop the kids though) and the amount of rocks in the sand and water wasn't what we'd have liked to have seen, but it is what it is. Guess when they dredged up all that sand for the beaches they couldn't sift the rocks out. Id like to see them expand the area and give that many people a little more elbow room. The lunch on the island was just so so . Like I said, the island has a ton of potential and Id like to see them expand a little bit more. Nassau is Nassau. Nothing special there. My daughter got to experience her first foreign city and that was fun, but after a cpl of hours t shirt shopping with her, we got back on the ship. The other BIG thumbs down on DCl was the internet. It is sold in packages and unlike other cruise lines, its sold in MB packages, not GB packages. I don't go on a cruise to spend my time on social media, but having an almost teenage daughter, wifi connectivity is a matter of life and death to her. Logging on the first day, DCL offers you a free 50MB pkg to try to the system. Not really knowing how many MB it would take to use any of the apps on my phone, I logged on to the DCL Navigator app literally to see what the prices were for the other packages. I clicked to 2 pages on the app and poof, nothing. I had already gone through the 50 MB in 2 pages. After hours of begging from my daughter, I allowed her to access her Snapchat for 5 minutes the next day using the wifi, knowing we could find free wi fi in Nassau the following day. 5 minutes on Snapchat cost me $19.99. Unreal. This was incredibly chintzy and disappointing. Im guessing DCL wants families to spend time together on the ship and not on their phones, which I 100% agree with, but for those of us who have to stay connected for work, on top of the teenagers wifi addictions, it made for a bit of a headache. For me it was a welcome escape when I sent my boss a screenshot of the internet prices and told him unless he wanted to pay for them, Id read all work emails when we got back to Miami! As for wifi in Nassau, we found a weak signal in a Burger King and it was just enough for my daughter to reconnect to her friends for a bit. Lots of other places around town offer free wi fi, so just pick one and save your $ on the ship. My wife, who is by far the big Disney person in our family, summed up the whole trip on the sea day as we were watching 30 kids fight to the death in the kiddie pool. "Im waiting for that aha moment. That moment where it hits us and we say Disney was worth the extra cost and effort. I never got it". For her to say that, it said something. We completely get the Disney thing and would never discourage people from taking a DCL cruise. On the other hand, we won't be taking another one ourselves. There is no doubt that our kids will have a better time on another cruise line with more activities (bigger pools, water activities, etc) and we will pay alot less for it and we will leave our Disney experiences to the parks. If you aren't a true Disney fanatic, I can't help but think you will probably be a little disappointed in your overall experience. The food and staff in my opinion really saved the trip for us. Disney got those things down pat and were the highlight of our cruise. Just know what you are getting for your $$ and you will be ok. Understand there is no escaping the Mouse when you are on a ship with him like you can when you are at the parks!!! Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
This was our sixth cruise and first with the Norwegian line. The Open Bar was fantastic and there were so many bars we really never waited for drinks. The staff walked around and served drinks poolside and in the evenings during the ... Read More
This was our sixth cruise and first with the Norwegian line. The Open Bar was fantastic and there were so many bars we really never waited for drinks. The staff walked around and served drinks poolside and in the evenings during the shows. With that said, the food was not the quality I have had on other lines. We felt the food was below average in the buffet and main dining rooms. We did not eat at the specialty restaurants and I would highly recommend trying those. They have to be better than what we were served. If you are looking for a cruise with fantastic food and quiet relaxation you need to keep looking, this one isn't for you. On the other hand, if you are looking for a fun filled weekend with plenty to drink and lots of partying this is the cruise for you. The DJ's were great and the poolside band was excellent. The passengers were lively, younger, and always ready for a good time. This is not a boat for children because there was not much for kids to do. The ship was very clean and in good shape for its age. It lacks the bells and whistles of the bigger ships but I feel it was fine for a weekend trip. The staff wasn't as friendly as on other lines. We didn't even meet our room steward until the second evening! With that said, it was a weekend trip. A good value if you enjoy drinking, listening to music, and hanging out on the pool deck. The Great Stirrup Cay stop was excellent and had enough chairs for everyone including food and drinks. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
Went for a birthday celebration with 25 family & friends so a brief relatively inexpensive cruise was the goal. Ship was tired & in need of refurbishing. Felt crowded. Cabin (7086) was smaller than I would have wished. But, plenty ... Read More
Went for a birthday celebration with 25 family & friends so a brief relatively inexpensive cruise was the goal. Ship was tired & in need of refurbishing. Felt crowded. Cabin (7086) was smaller than I would have wished. But, plenty of storage space. Beds were just OK. A/C was excellent. Soundproofing was good. Food was plentiful but low mediocre. Surprisingly, best meal of the day was lunch. Service at dinner, despite friendliness, was very SLOW. It was abundantly clear that there was a significant shortage of staff! Planned to save stfafing costs? Entertainment was typical but a bit above average quality. Ports were low level as expected but aquaria & gardens on Atlantis were worth the visit even though the $42 per person charge seemed exorbitant. Despite our precautions, 25% of our party of 25 was sick the day after we returned requiring doctor visits for a few. Another example of the old bromide--you get what you pay for. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
We were on a recent charter cruise. The food was meh although on Captain's night the prime rib and lobster were excellent. The menu options were not that great. okay but not the best. More pasta than anything. They only offered flat ... Read More
We were on a recent charter cruise. The food was meh although on Captain's night the prime rib and lobster were excellent. The menu options were not that great. okay but not the best. More pasta than anything. They only offered flat iron steak which was not very good. We bought a wine package of 3 bottles each. My husband drinks Merlot and I prefer Pinot Grigio which we were able to get. Our cruise was 10 days. After that was gone on the last few days you couldn't even buy one glass of Pinot Grigio. It was completely gone. And most of the other white wines were gone also. All except Sauvignon Blanc. I'd rather gnaw on an oak tree than drink that. Had to settle for something i really didn't care much for. We very rarely drink alcohol at home. When on a cruise we like to have wine with dinner and maybe during a show. This to me was very disappointing. Our cabin was nice. We had a balcony. Our cabin steward was good. The entertainment was good. The shore excursions were excellent. The best food on a daily basis is Guy's Burger Joint. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
First of all, embarkation and disembarkation was the fastest I have ever done..We're talking seconds. Kudos for the new system. We did a Back to Back cruise for a total of 14 days. (1/29/18 to 2/12/18). I believe this was the 3rd ... Read More
First of all, embarkation and disembarkation was the fastest I have ever done..We're talking seconds. Kudos for the new system. We did a Back to Back cruise for a total of 14 days. (1/29/18 to 2/12/18). I believe this was the 3rd and 4th cruise after coming out of dry dock. It's still a work in progress. We were in cabin 7261. On Superbowl Sunday the ship had a ship wide plumbing issue, which meant one couldn't use the toilets for a couple of hours during the game. It was a guess on a day to day basis if our shower would provide hot water. The refrigerator in the room never worked. The tv was hit or miss. Chemical odors throughout the ship at times. The lido buffet was problematic, with only one serving line, hence a very good breakfast was had in the main dinning room. Every crew member I dealt with were great. I recall three or fours shows were cancelled. On the second cruise the casino was a smoke free zone, which was great compare to the first cruise. On the second cruise the ship sailed to the A-B-C islands, which were just great.. The cruise was fine, the ship's issues didn't reflect on the service by the outstanding staff of the Victory. I'm sure in a few months the Victory will be up to the standards that it was when we last sailed on in back in Oct 2005 during Hurricane Wilma. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We chose the Victory in order to take 2 B2B cruises prior to a 10 day charter cruise--thus maximizing our flight down to Miami. The ship, just out of dry dock, had a bunch of problems. At least 30 to 40 contractors joined us on our B2B ... Read More
We chose the Victory in order to take 2 B2B cruises prior to a 10 day charter cruise--thus maximizing our flight down to Miami. The ship, just out of dry dock, had a bunch of problems. At least 30 to 40 contractors joined us on our B2B walk off the ship to see Customs on both of our sailings--don't know if they stayed on after we left. Hot water was turned off several times a day during the first 2 cruises and turned off completely for an hour or so during the charter. The food was better than our last Carnival cruise, but the service at main dinning room Breakfast and Brunch was poor. We found that there were some VERY GOOD waiters and some VERY POOR waiters. Our regular early seating dinning staff was Excellent! The food manager was POOR as we ran out of bananas on out 4 day cruise and our 10 day cruise where we also ran out of butter--all they had was whipped something to spread on rolls, etc. The entertainment was delightful! My only complaint was that the female lead singer seemed to scream some of her songs. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
The embarkation process was negative. We were not able to get on the ship until after 1:00. In the meantime, they had us crowded in a port room where there were not enough seats for everyone. There was no food or drink available in the ... Read More
The embarkation process was negative. We were not able to get on the ship until after 1:00. In the meantime, they had us crowded in a port room where there were not enough seats for everyone. There was no food or drink available in the port facilities. Disembarkation was again slow due to only two customs people interviewing all the passengers as they got off. The ship has been beautifully remodeled and felt nice to walk through. On the other hand, the cabins are very tired. There was cracks in the ceiling and bathroom walls. The walls also had dents and seem to be made of cheap materials. But the cabin attendant did an excellent job making the room comfortable. The dining experience was wonderful. Being on a low-carb diet, it was easy to stay on the diet in both the dining room and buffet. The dining room service was excellent! The nightly shows were fun and of high quality. Most of the cruise staff was friendly and efficient The Shore Excursion desk was bad. They delivered the wrong tickets to our room so we had to go to the desk to get the right tickets. The experience in Nassau was awful! The Shore Excursion people got us all off the boat for the Pearl Island beach day. They sent away the better shore excursions such as Atlantis and then offered us a measly 10% discount on the inferior shore excursions remaining. They could have told us on the boat before they left. They lied to us and negatively impacted our vacation. The shore experience in Key West was great. We took the trolley tour and got a nice feel for the place. We did a little shopping and the people there were hospitable. In conclusion, the cruise is probably best for those who want a quick getaway (3 days), like partying and don't care much about the cabins and shore excursions. It is mainly a young adult and family crowd. I would not probably do this cruise again and would look for a higher quality boat or cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
Choosing a short 5 day/4 night cruise to break winter blues got us booked on the NCL SKY with their "all inclusive " party boat concept to the Bahamas. WE did not seek a booze cruise but all routine glasses of wine, beers and ... Read More
Choosing a short 5 day/4 night cruise to break winter blues got us booked on the NCL SKY with their "all inclusive " party boat concept to the Bahamas. WE did not seek a booze cruise but all routine glasses of wine, beers and mixed drinks were included as well fountain drinks. Even Proseco with dinner is included. But there are drawbacks. The passengers varied from children to persons in their 90's celebrating their 65th wedding anniversary. Some newlyweds settled for this cruise. Embarkation was quite smooth with the Port of Maima porters out there welcoming us and not pushing for tips for gracious help with our checked luggage. They smiled helping some figure out how to put a luggage tag on their luggage. . WE had our documents but got diverted to do the health quesitonaire. Our handicapped friend got a wheelchair and was treated graciously through the embarkaiton process which proceeded quickly. There was no welcome onto the ship or anyone giving help. Finally we were told that the rooms would be ready at1:30Pm and we should seek lunch while waiting WE were shuffled off to the cafeteria/buffet and missed a served lunch for lack of informaiton. The NCL is an older ship with small cabins, tired public rooms, frequently broken public restrooms and older décor. The layout is similar to the NCL SUN with cabins on the 6A level isolated and no direct path on deck 5 from the forward activities to the aft Crossing's dining room. Many confused passengers new to sailing had to be redirected often, This "freestyle" cruise announced everything was freestyle including dining times and what one wears to a formal dining room. Imagine shorts, t-shirts and cover-ups over swimsuits for dinner in a formal dining venue! Many passengers chose to never get beyond shorts flips and random t-shirts. Some exposed their multicolor tattoos for lack of adequate fabric in shorts and T-shirts. WE had easy access to the dining rooms when open for breakfast , lunch and dinner with no delays for tables. Our biggest complaint was the tap water in the dining rooms and our cabin. Bad water.with an off taste. But we resisted buying extra price bottled branded water, It altered coffee and ice tea flavor. . This cruise of four nights leaving Port of Miami has three days in ports of Freeport on Grand Bahama, The NCL private island at Stirrup Cay and Nassau. .At no time did anyone give information or history of the islands visited, only shopping. NO info was given about weather each day. No news was easily accessible. On the first day just after the mandatory safety drill as passengers wandered off in many directions, the captain made an inadequate anouncement over the PA system that he had changed the sequence of the islands to be visited. Some guests with private tours out of Nassau were stunned they did not give any notice as we boarded or earlier that the itinerary had been changed. The reason given was cold weather approaching the Bahamas to keep the day on the NCL island for better weather ( to sell more tours and cabanas?) and let Nassau and its beaches and tours suffer any bad weather. Many complained for the rest of the trip about the inadequate use of PA when most people were between floors and going to the sailaway. Never to be repeated to the public! The captain did not talk with the passengers during this cruise except that one statement about alterations in the cruise. He smiled at photo sessions but did not do any meet and greet of any kind. Officers were silent and mostly invisible. If you wanted to dine with the officers you could book that (?for a fee?) Our cabin was forward behind some suites. WE had a nice sized porthole. and small cabin with two narrow closets. The new twin beds were too wide to let the old night tables to face forward with shelves for our belongings. Mis matched furniture. Very large Van Gogh prints ( 3X5 feet?) were hung so low on the wall we bumped them in rolling over in bed as they hang on the wall as our twin beds were shoved against. the walls. Nice touch having a refrigerator in the cabin. But the bathroom is quite small with a circular shower with a "cheap" white plastic shower curtain. The single sink is about 10 inches diameter. Communal hand soap, body wash and shampoo are in pump bottles avoiding passengers taking home amenities. Qualith of these produscts is okay but reminds one of dorms with communal shower soap products. Our cabin steward Joseph was clear about his plans to help us. He was there when he said he would be and kept us stocked with ice. Our beach towels reappeared each day clean except our 4th day in Nassau. Apparenly after the day at the beach there was a shortage of clean towels to restock our room. Our experince with security on this ship was quite annoying and we were not alone. One checked bag was held back in customer service because Xrays had shown an extension cord in the luggage. If we had not locked our luggage the staff would have invaded our luggage and seized it. However, I lock luggage when out of my sight on planes and ships. TSA locks which TSA can open Not NCL. So they held the luggage hostage until we came down to the passenger services where many bags were held and unlocked the bag. so they seized this extension cord that has been used on many trips in foreign hotels and ships.My extension cord is heavy duty UL tested with surge protection and grounged three prong plug. No, not good enough The NCL engineers had to inspect it for safety and I was to leave it with security. . The luggage would be returned after dinner. We got the cord t back late on our first night as approved. WE bring an extension cord for the cabins with one electric plate for two persons to charge their cameras and phones! NCL annoyed me. Before we sailed there was a mandatory emergency drill. WE went and due to disabilities were routed to go to the Dazzles night club so we could sit during the demonstrattion and loudspeaker instruction. WE were surprised that the only way attendance of the appropximetely 100 guests in the Dazzles was by a single woman officer walking around asking each gathering for a room number. No names She did not ask our names or how many were in the cabin. Our last two NCL cruises they scanned our ship photo cards into a portable scanner. But this ship had a pad of paper and a pencil to register our attendance. Imagine my annoyance when I got a condescending letter from NCL security stating i had not been at the mandatory emergency drill and should show up for a make up drill . I called the front desk as there was no direct conneciton to security and got that taken care of. Then when we were entering and leaving the NCL SKY the security staff demanded that all hats and sunglasses be removed. One of us has photo sun prescription lenes glasses that change up and down with bright light. "Take those sunglasses off". I had a base ball cap to cover the injury on my head with many sutures. I wanted to protect it from the sun and also to keep my private problem private." Take that hat all the way off". Not good enough to tip it up away from my face in their photo ID. What do they do with Muslim women? "Take that hat all the way off your face"? I was embarrased by their insensitivity. Our introduction to the cruise director came at the first nights' entertainment. Ferdie Imperial fancies himself a singing dancing "Jackie Chan". What an insult to that actor. Ferdie Imperial is a loud crude self centerd Filipino-Chinese man who makes himself the center of attention with such loud shouting and singing I covered my ears. After his first 35 minutes of non entertainment we left him behind at 10:05 PM Yes the one show per night "show time" was at 9:30 PM . Ferdie dominated it. WE walked out three times from four of the shows for the loudness and undesired content of show. The dancers were better than the singers who shouted rather than sang. Entertainment in general on this cruise was the worse of our more than 20 cruises. Other entertainment choices came poolside during the day, at the Dazzles nightclub, Atrium bar and late night in Outrigger lounge on DEck 11. The small groups doing the Atrium Bar were very good and filled up nightly. The guitarest shifted to the Captain Cook seemed dull there while exciting in the Atrium bar in aSantana style show .Some entertainers dpended on keyboards and electronic backup. There were many game show formats that did not get our attention. There is a new fee for playing game of Deal or No deal competing with the Bingo events. Neither were our thing. WE tried our hand at the casino and opted out when ahead. Many Millennials liked the fast moving table games and older persons used the slot machines. The casino had steady flows when out of port. Some found it disappointing that there were no casinos in the ports. Food- not all cruises are about food. But a Bahamas cruise has lame ports which makes the food more important. WE ate lunch three times in the Complimentary Garden Cafe, Breakfast four days came in the complimentary Palace dining room and we split our dinners betwee the Palace (3) and Crossing(1) dining room. Menus are the same in both dining rooms for dinner . Palace was easy to access off the passenger service atrium on deck 5. The Crossing Dining Room was hard to navigate as you had to go across the 6th deck or other deck to the aft elevators and go down to the 5th deck or be frustrated as 5 th deck did not go directly to the Crossings. as the kitchen blocks transit. Our breakfast had limited but reasonable choices of eggs, meat, yougart, danish and croissants,pancakes, waffles and my favorite smoke salmon with cream cheese. I got the surprise that the smoked salmon with bagel had a half of a bagel with a liberal serving of smoke salmon. I found it easier to seek croissants in the bread basket to enjoy the salmon. WE tried egg white omelets, bacon , sausage, "corned beef hash" etc. This was the worst corned beef hash ever served with small squares of potato and corned beef. No grilled or mixed up "hash, just dry cubettes.Never wanted to see it again. we enjoyed daily yogart that had one flavor choice-strawberry. Juice were not fresh but of good qulaity. Lunch in the dining room were three course selections. Salads were fair while the burgers and Philly cheese steak was quite disappointing. we found it wiser to find fresh fish selection or entree. Soups were good. Desert was decadent for mid day with Key lime pie and such Lunch in the Garden Cafe was a hit or miss assortment of salad fixings and hot dishes with no ethnic focus . Dal sat next to Hungarian Goulash, Chicken schnitzel, etc. WE found it strange the chciken parmesan had not cheese! WE tried many tastes of the lunch offereings but had no satifying selections. Dinner in the dining room was made special by the staff's efforts in both dining rooms. We realized that many of the dining room staff were quite inexpereinced and were tightly supervised by dining room management. I think a note to us as passengers that NCL had trainees under supervision serving us would have made us more comfortable as we had many delays and problems that resulted from inexperieinced staff. The dining room was over staffed as we counted all the staff standing about eager to serve us but frequetly getting the sequence of dining course messed up. WE applaud the Maitre D Glenda who sorted out problems of these servers. One server panicked when she heard food allergies and could not figure out if we should order certain food. WE understand training needs time and real action. But it would be better oif the passengers were included in the process. Give a gold star to Glenda for pulling our experience up to four star dining in the Palace restaurant. Most of the cruise special food nights are missing. No lobster, rack of lamb or crab legs on this menu. NO lamb entrees! Simple foods like lasagna, roasted chicken, spaghetti and meatballs was offered every night Nothing extraordinary. WE loved some of the complinmetnary starters- smoked salmon tartar, chicken noodle soup, caesar salad with chicken, swordfish carpaccio,lamb sausage, -while other starters were sad- "French onion soup gratinee " with no cheese over the cup, bouillbaise with a runny base with occasional bay scallops, and minimal flavor, Tuscan salad which was a chopped no flavor assortment of cubed vegetables. . WE tried entrees and rated well the corvina,baramundi, prime rib, NY strip steak, WE wished the chef gave ingredients like jalpenos and pepper in the decription as were scraped spicey coating off some foods. Our prime rib was the best night with great side vegetables. Deserts generally were disappointing. Too sweet or just not delivering a good expereince. The stratacielli gelati was poor. Hot lava cake was warm barely and the bread pudding was cool , perhaps coming out of refrigeration. "All inclusive" for NCL Sky means alcohol and drinks are included. That allowed wine with lunch or dinner out of the per glass selection we liked Proseco with dinner Wonderful. WE alos enjoyed the fun of trying the many colorful included cocktails. Frozen margaritas, frozen pina colada, frozen mud slide, CBC , Mai Tai, Rebellious Fish and other tall long drinks. Fountain sodas and juices ( not squeezed) also were complimentary. The cost was covered by a raised gratuitiy chrage of $18.99 per day. The staff got paid for our drinks. Bar tenders made sure each drink was full potency. Extra fees came for vintage wines and bottles. But most passengers found their favorite beer on the complinentary list. Staff wer not shy to offer refills of any drink It made an aggressive party atmospehre from embarkation. The three ports were Freeport, Grand Stirrup key and Nassau. No one explained why the port fees and taxes were much more than the cruise fare. These three ports had more port fees/taxes than our up coming 15 port 2018 European cruise. Freeport was a dismal port to pull into Quickly we learned that Huricane Matthew in October 2016 decimated this community. we saw a 1000 room hotel abandoned and empty awaiting retstoration next to a 200 room hotel also closed next to the former Port Lucayo casino. Many on the ship had no idea that the casinos of Freeport were closed by the hurricane. Another part of Freeport was irreparably damaged in 2004 and we drove past the ruined International Bazaar ( on the tourist map) and apartment buildings not occupied since 2004. The beaches on our taxi ride were badly damaged also in 2016 The charge $4 to 21 for access although we walked to a free beach beyond the police station in Port Lucaya WE recognized the survivors of devastation in the small shops in the port and at port Lucayo in the "marketplace. They repainted and opened up for the tourists to keep their livelihood. WEtook the common taxi holding 10-12 persons shoved into barely running vans and paid $10 RT to the Lucayo Market place but got the extra run to Tieno beach ( $14 RT) where many chose to spend their sun time I would not choose to return to this port. It is sad and not recovring from hurricanes. The NCL island was our "beach day". LargeTenders holding up to 400 people came to take us to the NCL operated beaches, water sports and cabanas Everything is designed to make money. Except the all inclusive carried over into a free buffet lunch and free flowing cocktains including machines for frozen cocktalis. The facilities are clean . The chairs were included and were clean and spaced all over the beach But this is not a large venue for 4000 people The lines of chairs facing the beach had a very regimented and impersonal feel. WE escaped to a small cluster of lounge chairs on the far left of the harbor to get quiet and less sun. The NCL staff encouraged the passengers to cluster together near the life guard beach. The best spots were far away from the mobs of loud people in the cold water. Our last port moved to the end, Nassau was effected by a c old front and wind sending us scurrying us along the shopping street Bay street. There are nice free beaches on the far end of the harbor ( right from the pier past the hotel) .We chose to visit historic sites and enjoyed again seeing the St Francis Xavier cathedral which replaced the burned down cathedral. WE got our free wifi at Mc Donalds and caught up on our email. Our bags went out on time for removal by NCL Disembarkation went as planned with minmial stress excpet lines to get through security For some reason a four person family got stopped by NCL from leaving as their ID cards failed and that delayed our exit. The moving sidewalks were turned on in the worng direction for disembarkation and we walked the length of this large terminal to our luggage which was ready as promised. Easy exit from a good cruise. WE talked often if we would return to NCL SKY and one of these "inclusive cruises" . WE would not if Ferdie Imperial was in any way involved with the ship and its activities. WE would look closer at the ports planned and if there was anything to do on each port. Many persons stayed on board drinking at the "party" rather than go off ship to these ports. WE would push to do as many meals in the Palace dining room as possible as this staff worked hard to make our cruise special. The Garden Cafe was the weakest buffet on a ship we have experience in over 20 years cruising including other NCL ships. WE would set our expectations low for entertainment. This cruise met our needs for a winter break but it is not a "cruise of a lifetime" as the cruise director shouted out to us. No one would see this simple ship, itinerary and foods as "cruise of a lifetime". Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
Empress of the Seas is the smallest in the RC fleet and maybe the oldest. Great for first time cruisers who have no expectations. Our cabin was standard. Good activities for those aboard but strange to have so many of them in the atrium ... Read More
Empress of the Seas is the smallest in the RC fleet and maybe the oldest. Great for first time cruisers who have no expectations. Our cabin was standard. Good activities for those aboard but strange to have so many of them in the atrium area. Shows were good but not great. I did not appreciate the Las Vegas show. Half of it was very inappropriate for under 16. Other cruise lines usually make sure those attend know the rating of the show. Dining was wonderful. We bought the soda beverage package and it was difficult to get a good soda. They cater towards alcohol so most bartenders seem blah towards our request to add mix in's of flavor to our soda. Royal Caribbean is my second choice for cruising. Good times but not a stand out. The majority of the crew was not as friendly as I have had in the past. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
Wanted a quick getaway and it turned into 4 days of rain and 4 hours of sun. Glad we got the aft balcony and spent 4 minutes on it in 4 days. Rain. Food was good not great but not a deal breaker. The cabin steward was great, very clean ... Read More
Wanted a quick getaway and it turned into 4 days of rain and 4 hours of sun. Glad we got the aft balcony and spent 4 minutes on it in 4 days. Rain. Food was good not great but not a deal breaker. The cabin steward was great, very clean ship. We wanted to go snorkeling on an excursion but it was raining hard and the seas were 3-4 ft at times so we skipped it and they still went so we had to pay, annoying. Should have a weather out so we didn't go and vomit over the rail the whole time. Our first cruise and we spent two hours the last full day on the pool deck the only two hours of the entire trip it didn't rain and we were on the boat. I know they can't control the weather, but being cooped up my wife came down with pneumonia two days after we returned home and had to take 8 days off work. I will rethink cruising in the future. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
This was my first cruise so I didn't have any expectations. Upon arriving the staff was very inviting and accommodating. Luggage was brought to our room at a decent time, room was clean and neat. We immediately went to the Windjammer, ... Read More
This was my first cruise so I didn't have any expectations. Upon arriving the staff was very inviting and accommodating. Luggage was brought to our room at a decent time, room was clean and neat. We immediately went to the Windjammer, and the food was very bland, not good at all! I have seen reviews where people spoke of the food not being good, I thought they were just being extra. But no, the food is not good. We were forcing ourselves to eat the food just so we can avoid the seasickness, because they didn't have any other food options other than chops grille. So if you are looking for good food, this will not be it. We actually had to get off the boat just to get some good seasoned food! however, the last night we ate at the dining hall and the food THAT night was amazing! Everything was cooked to perfection. I guess they put effort in it because it was the last night of the cruise. We were suppose to go to cococay, but that was cancelled due to rough waters. We were able to get off the boat that night and venture on to the island, and we had the time of our lives!! The boat had activities but none too exciting. It was plenty of times we just stood around bored because there was nothing to do. I feel like this cruise ship is geared towards middle age + people. This is a smaller boat so there wasn't as many shops or activities anyway. Again, the staff was amazing though!!! Wifi was expensive and didn't work continuously. Kept losing connection throughout the trip.The inside style of the ship was very old fashion. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018

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