12 Norwegian Sky Cruise Reviews for Holiday Cruises to Bahamas

Where do I begin. Our first experiance with the Sky was truely one to remember. We normaly sail in a Balcony (BA class mid ship) but on this cruise the cruising gods were smilling down on us and three days before we sailed we were bumped ... Read More
Where do I begin. Our first experiance with the Sky was truely one to remember. We normaly sail in a Balcony (BA class mid ship) but on this cruise the cruising gods were smilling down on us and three days before we sailed we were bumped up to the Owners Suite! Thats right we went from the balcony cabin of 202 sqft. to 835 sqft. cabin, private balcony w/hot tub, free alcohol, treats from the staff every evening a butler & concierge service. SPOILED!! You could tell the ship was a little old and needed a little mait. here and there but the staff was friendly and attentive the entertainment was very good for a smaller ship and of course the food was as always with Norwiegian fantastic. We have taken four cruise's with Norwiegian in the past five years these guys know how its done! They have certainly won my buisness as a matter of fact we are already booked on the madian voyage of the new Norwegian Escape in November.....Cant wait!! Read Less
Sail Date December 2014
Just returned today from a 4 day xmas cruise to the Bahamas on the Sky. We're a family of four, and this was our 4th NCL cruise, first time on the Sky. On this cruise, we were accompanied by our parents who have sailed several times ... Read More
Just returned today from a 4 day xmas cruise to the Bahamas on the Sky. We're a family of four, and this was our 4th NCL cruise, first time on the Sky. On this cruise, we were accompanied by our parents who have sailed several times previously. Overall, the Sky cabins could use some work, but we enjoyed our cruise... how can you not!? 4 days was the perfect amount of time on the Sky. As always embarkation and debarkation went smoothly. We were on the ship within 15 minutes of arrival and headed straight for the dining room for lunch. Why more people don't eat in the dining rooms more often mystifies me... we were one of about a half dozen tables for lunch on the first day. We immediately relaxed to the smiles and superb service of the wait staff. Food was very good to excellent. We brought a bottle of wine on board for each night of the cruise to go with dinner. Everyone enjoyed the entrees in the main dining rooms... lowerlights were the Thai shrimp and gnochi... but the salmon with tarragon butter sauce was a highlight. We ate one night at Le Bistro, and it was sensational! Beef tenderloin was cooked to perfection and the creme brulee was to die for! The ship itself was nice but is showing its age in spots. We enjoy this size ship though. Every cabin was full on the ship, yet it didn't feel overly crowded. Entertainment was... entertaining. The Vegas show had energy, and the comedian projected his good time onto the crowd. The main show venue doesn't have the best seating or sightlines: stick to the lower level if you want the best view. By far, the most disappointing aspect of the cruise was our deck 9 oceanview cabin. The window was covered in stains (I know it's hard to keep these clean), the shower had no water pressure (squirted maybe two inches from the handheld nozzle), the shower water temperature could not be regulated well (no help from a call to the service desk), and the bathroom stank of urine during embarkation (cleaning our the hold?). Cabins on the Jewel-class ships are much nicer and better designed. We stopped in Freeport, Nassau, and Great Stirrup Cay. I see no reason to go back to either Freeport or Nassau, but GSC was super. Very relaxing time on that Island. We headed past the first (overcrowded) clump of loungers and landed on some loungers sprinkled upon a grassy area. Absolutely one of the best days we've head on any of our cruises! A little food, some pina coladas and the ocean at our feet. Would I travel on the Sky to the Bahamas again? I don't think so, but the cruise was enjoyable nonetheless. Food was great, and we'll definitely do Le Bistro and GSC again. NCL staff was uniformly friendly and accommodating. Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
Although a friend of mine had many good things to say about Norwegian, negative reviews and word-of-mouth had me a bit worried as I approached my cruise on the Sky. I booked it anyhow because the location and timing were perfect for a ... Read More
Although a friend of mine had many good things to say about Norwegian, negative reviews and word-of-mouth had me a bit worried as I approached my cruise on the Sky. I booked it anyhow because the location and timing were perfect for a short cruise with 20 and 24 year old sons, the price was also excellent, and I thought they would appreciate the livelier vibe (compared to our usual Princess or Celebrity cruises.) We had a great time. I would not hesitate to recommend Norwegian, and the Sky, to anyone--unless they are looking for a luxury cruise, in which case they should take a luxury line! The ship was very well-maintained. The embarkation process was incredibly quick and simple. Getting off and on the ship at the ports was just as easy. Disembarkation was also the least painful process of any cruise I have taken. (I'm sure it helped that I have moved to Florida so was able to drive to/from the port, which made disembarkation timing much more flexible.) We booked a dinner in each of the for-fee restaurants onboard after reading complaints about the MDR. However, we had our first night's dinner in one of the MDRs and ate lunch in the other, and we found them to be perfectly fine. The food in the MDR and buffet is unpretentious and mainly American fare but it was quite tasty and service and cleanliness were great. The for-fee restaurants were enjoyable as well. We never waited more than a minute or two to be seated in any venue. We had an unexpected sea day as wind made it impossible for the tenders to operate at GSC, which I understand is a frequent problem this time of year. We enjoyed the sea day though, even though it meant I had no beach time since I'd stayed on the ship at Nassuau (my sons walked to Junkanoo Beach and reported it was clean though rocky.) At Freeport we just walked around the shops and spent some time at one of the bars on the pier. My 20 year old son was determined to have some bar time since he was legal to drink there! (I also signed the waiver onboard to allow him to order beer and wine on the ship, and it worked very well--servers were very careful to adhere to the rules.) Our oceanview porthole room was quite small and my poor 6'3" son was much longer than his pullout bed, but we made do just fine. The entertainment was quite varied given the smaller size of this ship, and while it seemed to me to be even a tad cheesier than most cruise-ship entertainment, it was enjoyable. We went to most of the theater shows and enjoyed the musicians in the various bars. We also went to Dancing with the Sky Stars. We didn't do any of the for-fee options (Deal or No Deal, bingo, etc.) so cannot comment on them. If I have any complaint it is about the loud announcements for bingo etc. But honestly, it was not a big deal to me. Maybe I'm just a lot less picky than many people, but I give the Sky and the 4-night Bahamas itinerary a big thumbs-up! Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
I like to start out with the Pro's of this cruise: Expensive ticket price but caught a good sale so I liked the price I paid. They also gave us VIP check in because my husband is Active Duty Military. Overall great food but the dining ... Read More
I like to start out with the Pro's of this cruise: Expensive ticket price but caught a good sale so I liked the price I paid. They also gave us VIP check in because my husband is Active Duty Military. Overall great food but the dining room had better dining than buffet style. The entire dining staff, stateroom attendants and bartenders were amazing! Fairly smooth sailing. They also had a great holiday show. Cons: FIRST when I called to inquire if the online ship map was to scale the person from NCL lied. Deck 10 room 0106 is in fact the smallest style room (2.5' x10' less). So for the same price I was guided in to picking the smaller of the two room choices. I verified with my neighbors during the cruise of the sizes vs my initial options. SECOND the entire cruise experience seemed confused and not so organized. I called guest services 6 times during the 3 day cruise, of that 4 times during the day it FLAT OUT was never answered (ohh and I waited while it rang)! I had to go down to the guest services desk which was NOT at all busy. The entire upper level staff was curt and would constantly cut you off to answer the question they think you were asking. Several times I received contradictory information when asking questions because the initial answers did not pan out. THIRD our stateroom smelt like mildew BIG time. It was mainly the bathroom but the smell hit us when we walked in. When we got home MOST of our clothes WREAKED! Every single thing in my luggage (unpacked on the ship or not) wreaked when we got off the ship. Because the closet was right across from the bathroom we all smelt pretty bad on the drive home. Ironically my swim top smelt like chlorine inside the zip lock bag...lol I didn't notice my clothes smelled in the room but when we left the ship on the third day WOW my shirt was eeewww mildew smelly! FOURTH, I realized quickly that some things were discouraged on NCL Sky that is advertised as available. For example I did not receive a menu for room service (not the only one), nor did I receive one after telling guest services that I did not have one and wanted to see the menu. They said I have to call, they will tell me, when I did they said call back (NEVER ordered room service). Our parents had a menu in their room. Another example is carrying your own luggage off the ship. We did not fly so we could easily carry our three bags off, but were constantly told we HAD to check luggage off ship yet in the newsletter it stated it was optional but vaguely worded. Finally second attempt trying to reach guest services at 7pm they said it was optional and that we may actually carry our bags off. It sure didn't seem that way with the constant barrage of people reminding us we HAD to. FIFTH, we booked a shore excursion to tour forts and a museum. It was severely rushed to say the least but liked the tour. We also booked the hippo water slide (FUN!) but they shut it down nearly 2 hours early! So total waste of money. SIXTH con, we found a big roach in our stateroom. Sadly we had never brought food in the room and this last night I had just brought back a fruit plate, needless to say no so hungry after hunting down a cockroach. Perhaps this is why they discourage room service. I have been on another cruise and ordered constant food, never seeing a roach, big time EEEEwwww NCL! NEVER AGAIN, If I were a first time cruiser I would honestly never cruise again period. Since I am not, it will cruise again... just not be with NCL. Overall not worth what they charge. Thank goodness for Royal Caribbean! Read Less
Sail Date December 2011
OK first let me say we where very worried after reading so many negative reviews. This was our first cruise that had freestyle dining and the tips "forced" upon you. Most reviews we read stated that the employees where lazy and ... Read More
OK first let me say we where very worried after reading so many negative reviews. This was our first cruise that had freestyle dining and the tips "forced" upon you. Most reviews we read stated that the employees where lazy and don't expect anything extra. I must say as a experienced cruiser we where pleasantly surprised. The Sky isn't the best ship we have been on but it was a blast. The Positive things: The food was nothing like we expected according to prior cruisers and their reviews. We ate everywhere except the pay places like Cagneys and the Italian place. Everything was always fresh and hot. There was a large variety from vegetarian,Indian,Asian and others. We ate at the buffets inside and pool side. Excellent burger and that type fare. Our room was small but was kept clean and neat (9345) They have 24 hour room service that is included unless you order pizza (5$ for large) Drinks are like most high price and easy on the liquor. (We carried on our own vodka and rum) Btw way in to types of ways to test their checking. They caught neither. They constantly are cleaning and picking up you plates and replacing silver/napkins. Their organization for exiting the ship was some of the best we have seen.Their private island Stirrup Cay blows away other private islands we have visited by a long shot. All newly built buildings, bathrooms, kitchen/buffet etc. Food on island was ribs,chicken,burgers, hotdogs and all the other fruit and side dishes. I could go on and on but I'm sure you get the point. We was pleased with our experience and will be back. Negatives: The ship is layed out really weird and cut up. Not sure why this is. But we are not that difficult. To wrap this up let me add unless you are a pain in the ass type traveler or one of those people that can never be pleased or maybe your a billionaire and used to 200$ a plate meals every day I would ignore the majority of the previous negative reviews. After using this site for the last several years to review ships prior to travel Ive found most negative comments to be 90% B.S. Check them out and have a great time. We will be going again soon. Read Less
Sail Date December 2011
It's taken me this long to get home, settled in, and down off the clouds after my back to back cruises on the Norwegian Sky. What an incredible cruise, and what an even more incredible crew!! My trip starts out with the usual ... Read More
It's taken me this long to get home, settled in, and down off the clouds after my back to back cruises on the Norwegian Sky. What an incredible cruise, and what an even more incredible crew!! My trip starts out with the usual arrival at the port of Miami. If you've not sailed out of Miami yet, have no fear, it's completely painless. You'll be dropped off right in front of where you need to be. If you were smart and put your luggage tags on back at the hotel, you'll simply drop them with the luggage handlers and go directly to the port house. At that point, you'll receive a little form to fill out to make sure you don't have the flu or other assorted bugs, and go thru an airport-security type screening checkpoint. As long as you don't have any opened bottles of anything, like at the airport, you will be fine. If you have an unfinished soda, you'll have to leave it behind. If you are staying in the suites or have a VIP designation, then head right over to the VIP Registration office and they will take great care of you while you snack on treats. If not, then proceed to the general registration counter with your flu form, your eRegistration docs (you did print them off, right?), and passport in hand. Hand the agent the paperwork, smile for the camera, present a credit card, and receive you stateroom key card. From there you will go to the waiting area (if you are early) to pause for full clearance of the ship, if it's after twelve, you will saunter right on board. I can tell you that it took longer to type this paragraph than it took me to board. It was smooth, seamless, painless and actually quite fun! As I made the final zig-zag turns and arrived on board, I was met by Richard Matic and Gio, the Cruise Director and Assistant Cruise Director respectively. They were grinning from ear to ear, waving, and joyously welcoming the guests on board. Now when you consider that this crew does 3 and 4 day cruises back to back, it's no small feat to be so upbeat, charming and energized time after time. Not to mention they are adorable! I'm already excited and I'm not even inside yet! In all fairness, I had met Richard before on the Pearl for my Alaska cruise, but none the less it had been nearly three months and a few thousand passengers for him. Yet he recognized me right away, we shared a big hug and promises to catch up later. He kept that promise and made this cruise one of my favorites. Upon entering Deck 6, you will marvel at the atrium lobby. Unlike the new ships with just 2 or 3 decks of atrium, the Sky's atrium ascends all the way to the top of the ship. The lobby is flanked by glass elevators that offer a fantastic view as you ascend! The lobby is bright and cheerful as are the assorted crew members all awaiting to take your wine order, sell you a soda package, hold your carryon's while you wander and wait for your stateroom, take your dinner reservations, and direct you to where you might find lunch or anything else your little heart desires. As the days passed, I experienced nearly everything possible on the Sky. And I do mean everything! From food, to fitness, to entertainment, to relaxation, to exploration, to more fun that I though imaginable sailing alone. That's right, this was a solo cruise for me, and I must say that I was attended to with as much care and interest as the larger parties and full families staying in the Suites. The cuisine was fantastic! I did eat in the Palace Main Dining room once and the food was delicious and the service perfect. I also ate in my favorite haunt, Le Bistro and the meal was nothing short of exquisite. Don't leave without trying the French Onion Soup and the Escargot. There is an up-charge for this restaurant but it will be the best $20 you spend on board. Another up-charge restaurant I sampled was La Cucina, and it didn't disappoint. Try your best to avoid the traditional pasta favorites and delight in some non-traditional but scrumptious Italian delights! Not because they aren't good, but because you shouldn't miss out eating something truly out of the ordinary. My breakfasts in Cagney's were way too yummy with my favorite being what I would call "pound cake turned into French toast"...need I say more? Then there is a buffet of fresh fruits and pastries that should be enough to fill you for the entire day. The Garden Cafe Buffet was adequate with plenty of selections that you would expect at a buffet, with some surprises such as some Indian and Asian food selections. I do miss the fresh chocolate chip cookies that are usually there, but can I really complain with a dozen other desserts to choose from? I do enjoy comedy and magic, but typically these shows on a cruise ship are more of an option for your evening's entertainment, rather than a "must see". My mind was changed when I attended Rich Purpura's comedy and magic show. I was hooked, and attended each and every one of his shows and events. I laughed so hard, and I can't begin to tell you why. There isn't a joke I could retell, because it wasn't really so much an "act" as a conversation with a man musing about things on the ship and in life. It was total hilarity on a level I've not experienced in a long time. The Norwegian Sky Production company was yet again another surprise. I've sailed several NCL ships, and I'll be the first to say that I miss the Jean Ann Ryan Company (JAC) performances. Most ship's productions companies I've seen were good and entertaining, but not the caliber of the JAC's. This theory was dispelled on the Sky. The Sky Production Company not only met and matched but exceeded what I'd seen with JAC. The connection between the performers was authentic and electrifying. You could see the chemistry and feel the energy among them and it was contagious! In addition to the regular stage entertainment, the Cruise Director Staff kept anyone and everyone that wanted to be involved very busy with an assortment of onboard activities that not only pleased but genuinely entertained. There was something for everyone among the assorted classes, tastings, clinics, game shows, bingo events, and exciting nightclub entertainment. Just to name a few of my favorites: Dancing with the Stars; The Fountains Show; Adult Quest (if you are over 18, you MUST do this); 70's and 80's Disco; White Hot Party; the Ship-N-Males Revue; and the assorted crazy pool deck antics such as the Mr. Sexy Legs Competition; Ice Sculpting demo; the Pub Hub crawl; and more. All that was just on the ship! They continued to carry on with more activities on the beach on NCL's private island "Great Stirrup Caye". Now admittedly, I spent my time holding a beach lounger down and not participating, but there were ongoing events on the beach such as a Hula Hoop Competition; a Limbo Contest; Parasailing; Snorkeling; Jet Ski use; and Kayaking, along with great live Caribbean music and a beach BBQ that left nothing behind. I would like to pause here and take a moment to mention the Cruise Director by name, Richard Matic. He has to be one of the most dedicated and under-rated Cruise Directors in NCL's fleet. You will not only have the time of your life on a ship with him, but you will leave the cruise with a new friend and having a better experience for knowing him. Richard went out of his way to make his guests feel personally welcome. If you sail the Sky, and Richard is still the CD be sure to tell him that "Tonette says hello" and if you are so inclined give him a great big hug. Richard heads a fantastic Cruise Directors staff including Assistant Cruise Director Gio, who also is an amazing personality that will leave a great big smile on your face every time you chat with him. I'm sure we will see Gio on a ship of his own as CD very soon! Please tell him hello for me also, and don't forget the hug! Another person that single handedly made my cruise everything it was, is Concierge Omar O'Besso. You simply cannot find a more dedicated concierge in all of NCL's fleet. Omar loves his job, but more than that he takes a very sincere interest in his guests in a way that I've not encountered before. By the time your cruise is over, you will want to take him home with you! Here is another chance for you to hug another NCL crew member for me! Give Omar two!! The Hotel Director -â€" Steven Knot, F&B Director - Mike Van Bokhoven, and Beverage Director - Raj Rodrigues, were also outstanding examples of Officers who take great pleasure in what they do, and that being making sure you are having the best experience possible. I don't think these men ever slept, as I saw them first thing when I got up and they were still going late into the night. I just have to add a couple of points of interest, and insist that you verify these facts. The Hotel Director and the Guest Services Manager can dance a very steamy, albeit rough tango! The Beverage Director is from India and quite possibly a reincarnation of Michael Jackson. These details may seem silly (and they are), but they attest to what lengths the Officers of this crew go to in order to not only entertain guests, but have a good time with each other! I've just been mentioning Officers, but let me assure you the remaining crew is equally as dedicated. I can attest that my room steward Gusti on the Norway deck, never sleeps and spent the entire cruise posted outside my stateroom door awaiting my every request. The charming young lady, Uneza Shaikin selling the "chain by the inch" in the gift shop never failed to stop me for a hug and a hello. The Cruise Consultant Martin took it upon himself to personally resolve an issue I was having with my Latitudes number without my even asking. Christian in the Crossings Dining Room met me on embarkation day, and she never failed to remember my first name. I could go on and on. Even the photographer staff is friendly and fun. The photos are still FAR too expensive, but I have to admit their charm even seduced me into purchasing a couple of the prints. You just can't help yourself when the photo was so great (me in my Queen of Hearts Halloween costume on the grand staircase), and the gang is just so friendly. Always a stop for me was the fitness center and the spa. The fitness center is more than adequate with state of the art equipment, and plenty of it. There is a free weight section as well as the rows of treadmills and ellipticals all facing the large picture windows with a great view. I have to wonder though, why do they attach televisions to the tops of those things when there is such an amazing view?? LOL I never had a problem finding a free machine. I did take a couple of classes but have to say I was a bit frustrated a couple of times, so didn't attend the usual amount that I normally would. Once the instructor decided to do "abs" instead of what was on the schedule which was "stretch and relax"; and once during a stretch class a cartoon was on the television at a pretty hefty volume. I was thinking more like Enya for a stretch class, and not Sponge Bob. I'm sure I could have said something, so the onus is on me for not doing so, but just some observations. The spa was nice, crisp, refreshing, and rejuvenating looking with a full salon and barber services, along with assorted spa treatments. There is a small one-person hydro therapy tub but it's an extra charge unless you purchase a Poultice Massage. I was a bit disappointed that I wasn't able to use it for a bit before my Bamboo Massage, but those are the rules. There is also a steam room and sauna in the locker room, which you can use if you purchase a spa treatment. I took the spa tour on the first day, which is always fun, and you can sign up for the drawing which were several really great prizes. I signed up for a Bamboo Massage and a Therapie' Facial. Both were very enjoyable albeit it still pretty pricey. Make sure you take advantage of port day specials to make it affordable. I must say that I prefer the NCL Mandara Spa's with the Relaxation Spa section, but considering this is a small ship, they did quite well with their space. The spa staff is friendly and helpful and knowledgeable. Since I was on a back-to-back, I'd like to share some about that experience. I was lucky and was assigned the same stateroom, so that meant that I didn't have to pack up at the end of my first leg. I was able to get up, go for my run, work out in the gym, shower and get dressed, have a lovely breakfast in Cagney's, and leisurely make my way to Captain Cook's Bar at 10am. I was met there by a crew member from Guest Services that walked me off the ship, and handed me to a Port Crew Member who literally walked me off the ship, and down to Immigration and Customs. This was a simple process of handing them my Customs Document, my passport, smiling and answering "yes" to the question of "So you had so much fun you are staying on board?" I was then again escorted to the waiting area, and in very short order, as soon as the ship cleared, I was the first to be escorted back on board. I slipped back up to my stateroom, grabbed my iPad, and found a spot in the sun on Deck 11 to relax and await the rest of the new batch of passengers. Then I had a bright idea and went up to the spa and took advantage of it being completely empty and got a massage and facial. Ahhhhhh! When I emerged from my bliss, the ship was full of new guests and my adventure continued! The ports of call we visited were Freeport, Nassau and Great Stirrup Caye (GSC), all islands in the Bahamas. The four day portion of my cruise stopped at all three ports. The three day portion stopped at Nassau and GSC only. I must admit I didn't spend much time on shore in either Freeport or Nassau. My plan, to be honest, was to simply stay on board and exquisitely take part in every aspect of my floating 5 star resort at sea, but I did venture on land twice and want to share those highlights with you. Freeport is your typical port pier shopping experience with the "straw market" hawkers and a live Caribbean band that breaks into action whenever a passenger appears on the gangway coming off the ship. I can't tell you anything about any of the ship's excursions or any excursions for that matter, nor the famous or infamous "Our Lucaya" as I didn't make it anywhere near it. I can share with you one of the highlights of my cruise, and that was a visit to the Perfume Factory in the old International Bazaar in Freeport. I had read about it online, and decided that was my one stop. I disembarked and tried to get a taxi. "How much to the International Bazaar?" I asked. "It's closed lady, go to Our Lucaya, its better!" Now I knew this was coming. From having read on CruiseCritic, the taxi drivers make $5 to take you to Our Lucaya and only $4 to the International Bazaar, so they tend to stretch the truth. It's true that about 50% of the shops in the International Bazaar are closed. Due to the hurricanes and the main hotel there closing, many shops just never reopened. There is endless gossip about how may be buying the hotel and resurrecting the area, but those rumors have been going on for a few years now. Who really knows? One historical icon that still stands at the International Bazaar is the Perfume Factory. Its history goes back being founding in 1969 by Albert Whisnant, later sold to Peter and Patricia Aston in 1976, and since Mr. Aston's death in 1993, is now ran by Mrs. Aston and daughter Chrisanne, but you can read all about that on their website. In brief, it's a free standing building that appears to be a replica of an old Bahamian Mansion. Inside, your nose will be delighted with an exotic dance of refreshing delightful fragrances coming from tropical perfumes, lotions, oils and soaps. The friendly staff will be grateful you came and more than happy to escort you throughout the premises for a tour. If you are so inclined, you can sit down before a myriad of essential oils and create your very own fragrance, which you will hand mix and create yourself. For a very reasonable fee, you will leave with 1.5oz of your signature scent and a certificate of registry for your formula. It may sound very kitschy, but I spent my afternoon taking the tour, creating my fragrance and speaking with Chrisanne (daughter of the Astons). No doubt this lovely woman has given this tour hundreds, no thousands of times, but by her demeanor with me, I would have sworn it was one of her first. Her excitement and joy in helping someone understand fragrances was contagious. So I simply had to create my own. Make the time to visit the Perfume Factory. If Chrisanne is there, please tell her that I said hello. Great Stirrup Caye is NCL's private island that is still under construction. That said, there are many things ready and waiting for you. There is a functional dock now that the tenders use, and getting off and on the Caye is very easy. Unless of course there are high winds and rough seas. It is said that 2 out of 3 stops at GSC are cancelled due to this condition, so keep that in mind. My back-to-back had two stops planned at GSC, and one was cancelled. The day we made it to the Caye was lovely! There is a nice stretch of beach along a protected cove that makes for softly rolling waves onto a white sand beach. They still need to do some work grooming the beach regularly, as the coral embankment surrounding the cove is in an ever constant state of depositing broken pieces of coral and shells. This isn't a big deal, but be sure to bring aqua socks or beach shoes if you have tender tootsies. NCL's Cruise Director's Staff has a long long list of assorted beach activities going throughout the day, along with a variety of aquatic excursions. You won't be bored. There is live music, a simple straw market, three full bars, and a beach BBQ buffet that won't leave you wanting for anything. I chose to make it my mission to make sure that my beach lounger didn't try to escape and kept myself firmly planted on it most of the day. There are lots of beach loungers and beach chairs available at no charge, but I would still suggest you get off the boat early if you wish to make sure you have one closer to the water's edge. There are no beach umbrellas, but you can rent a clam shell style shelter. The cabanas are not yet completed, but there are a few assorted buildings that you can seek some refuge from the sun. There are also palm trees a plenty if you can score one early. Another blissful day on a white sand beach in a tropical island setting. Here are some random assorted tips: *Grab your breakfast and slip into the Long Boards Bar to eat it. It's quieter than in the buffet, and offers a unique venue for breakfast. *There is a fantastic bar outside Cagney's called the Plantation. They rarely advertise on ship, but most nights from 6p-8p they offer two-for-one martinis! The best alcohol deal on the ship! *There is a "quiet zone" just above the pool deck around the front of the ship; it has a nice quiet private hot tub and splash pool. *Take in the Art Auction preview for the free champagne and you might learn something about art. *Take in the Gift Shop Presentation for free liquor tastings. *Take advantage of the laundry special half way thru the cruise. Get all those delicates done before you go home. It's a great deal AND they fold. *At least ONCE, get up and go have coffee on the far aft of the ship on Deck 11 and watch the sun rise. *Do NOT miss the Fountains Show or anything with Rich Purpura. *Give Richard, Omar and Gio big hugs for me...did I say that already? Bon voyage! Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
We booked this cruise because the itinerary included both Nassau and Grand Bahama and we wanted to scuba dive at both of these locations. We were not sure about cruising as we are used to sailing in a small boat as a family. However, we ... Read More
We booked this cruise because the itinerary included both Nassau and Grand Bahama and we wanted to scuba dive at both of these locations. We were not sure about cruising as we are used to sailing in a small boat as a family. However, we were very pleasantly surprised. Both the food and service were excellent. The entertainment was also good, especially the comedian Rich Purpura.The French restaurant cost a bit more but was totally out of this world. The daily special cocktails were also great. The freestyle aspect of dining was good for us as we did not want to be tied down to timings.We were also very impressed with the photographers on board and had some lovely photos.We also enjoyed the towel folding demonstration and bought the DVD!!!If you scuba dive, you must do the famous shark dive at Stuart cove's. This was a magical and unique experience.The main problem with the cruise was that it was only for 4 nights. We think a week or more would have been better if doing a lot of shore activities. Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
My wife, 4 year old son, and I took a Thanksgiving cruise in November, 2008 on the Sky and had a wonderful experience. So we decided to repeat the experience in November 2010. It was good, but not as good. Allow me to itemize. Checkin: ... Read More
My wife, 4 year old son, and I took a Thanksgiving cruise in November, 2008 on the Sky and had a wonderful experience. So we decided to repeat the experience in November 2010. It was good, but not as good. Allow me to itemize. Checkin: Very smooth. Attendant was very helpful funneling us into the quickest line. No longer than 30 minutes from parking garage to onboard. Food: No complaints. Service: Dining Room: The first night, Lobster night, we had Thomas. He was excellent, so much so that we bragged about him to the asst. maitre'd. Big mistake. After that, his service went from 10 to 1. The assistant waiter brought a bowl of lobster tails to the table next to us for seconds, and did not even acknowledge us. After what seemed like an eternity, we were finally able to get her attention to request another lobster, and she acted like how dare you disrupt my system. Poor service. They brought me a dry lobster tail with no butter. The next night we dined in the forward dining room and had Pasek. Totally different experience. If we had had Pasek the first night, I would have no complaints regarding restaurant service. Other dining venues: Overall, very good. However, I found that if you asked a bar runner for a soft drink and showed him my drink card, he became very uninterested in serving. As a matter of fact, I ordered one Pepsi from a bar runner in Il Adagio at lunch and still have not received it. I guess they figure no tip, so why bother, but they got their tip when I bought the drink card. Bartenders were sure to explain that they made the drinks "extra strong, just for you". Not really. Cabin Steward: very good. After the first night, he did not make up the sofa bed for my son. We got him to do it again on the fourth night. Also, had a hard time getting him to return to the cabin to bring a change of sheets (toddler accident). But overall, he was very good. Kids program: OK, two years ago, when my son was 4, he could not wait to get to the boys and girls programs. I mean like he would sprint down the hall and be the first in line when they opened. I mean like 10 minutes early so he wouldn't miss any of it. This is the main reason we chose to take this cruise again. But now he is 6, and in the older group. I watched as an older kid prodded him as they were sitting around in a circle, and the leader said nothing, even did not appear to notice. There were more than 30 kids in that 6-9 yr old kids' area room and only one leader was apparent. Poor supervision. They simply did not have enough staff to accommodate 700 kids on this cruise. And I think they should have had some idea of how many kids were to be on this cruise. On a positive note, with the staff being composed of primarily Canadian workers, there were no accent issues to deal with, like we had on the Carnival Inspiration (heavily European). Entertainment: Trivia, game shows, entertainment, and quest were excellent and well run. Matt and Felix did an excellent job. Pools: COLD Casino: Only had 1 $5 blackjack table open the night I was there. $25 tables sat unused with attendants smiling at guests. Specialty restaurants: We did not try any of the specialty restaurants, but we did sign up for the murder mystery dinner ($20 each) at Il Adagio. However, the meal was held in the rear dining room at 5:30 to 7:00. This was Ok, except when the dining room opened up to everyone, the noise made it difficult to hear at our table. This could have been held at the specialty restaurant. However, that is really my only complaint. The food was good and the murder mystery was fun (I didit). Shore excursions: Nassau: we took a buggy ride tour. Interesting. Ate at a Bahamian restaurant. Not bad. I bought a "Cuban" cigar. Horrible. I would not recommend anyone buy a "Cuban" cigar from the Bahamas. The one I bought last year in Grand Caymans was great. This one, and the one I bought two years ago in Nassau, were HORRIBLE. Did Atlantis two years ago, not worth it again. However, Avoid Johnny Rockets on Paradise Island. Very expensive. Freeport: Pat and Dianne's snorkeling cruise. Boat was the Fantasia. Two snorkel ladders on the back, waterslide into the ocean on the front. Great, with very attentive and friendly crew. Would love to do them again. Great Stirrup Cay: A lot of fun. Snorkeling was awesome, food was great. Note to NCL, do your pizza that way ON the ship too. Overview: Enjoyable but not superior. Read Less
Sail Date November 2010
My husband and I knew that we wanted to go somewhere to start our Christmas holidays, we just did`t know where. We are on a limited budget, so wanted to get as much for our buck as we could. I signed up for many web sites with all ... Read More
My husband and I knew that we wanted to go somewhere to start our Christmas holidays, we just did`t know where. We are on a limited budget, so wanted to get as much for our buck as we could. I signed up for many web sites with all inclusives and cruise lines for emails with vacation specials. I practically lived on the computer for the months of October and November reading all the specials on the emails I was receiving. I have always wanted to go on a cruise, but hubby wasn`t too excited about spending a week on a boat. Boy, was he mistaken! When the last day came, I think he was more depressed than I was and I was pretty bad. He now wishes I would have talked him into a longer vacation. The balcony we had was sooo much bigger than I thought it would be. It was clean and set up very professionally by the stateroom stewards. The service was impeccable starting with the people at the call centre when I called to book, the bar stewards, the cooks and servers in all the restaurants (and there was lots to pick from), the captain, the great and funny entertainment. I know I am rambling, but their was so many things that were just perfect! Our first port excursion was the Grand Bahama Island and we went on the Caves and Beaches tour. What a let down! The caves were just holes with water in them and the fish we were suppose to be able to feed were little minnows and we could not feed them. The beach was ok - a little raw - no buildings, no bathrooms, not very nice. Although the water was beautiful. Then we get back on the bus and go to lunch which you had to buy and spend one and a half hours at lunch and another beach. Well we just came from an hour at another beach. The lunch was not cheap, the food on the boat is free.........It was a waste of time. I wished we would of just walked around town and looked at the local shops. Will know better next time. Great Stirrup Clay was sooo nice. We decided to try the snorkeling, which we had never done before. The only complaint I have is that there is no one to give you a lesson on what the heck you are doing. My husband got the hang of it pretty quick, but I had the can`t breath problem. But the water was perfect temperature and beautiful. The boats were taking passengers back and forth all day, so you could go as early as you want and stay as long as you want. It was a great time. Only next time I think I would save the money and pass on the snorkeling and just go for the beach and swimming. Read Less
Sail Date December 2009
Having not been on an NCL cruise in almost 8 years I was a little unsure what to expect. But we were eager to get away from the cold of NE Pennsylvania and a have a nice break after the Thanksgiving holiday. Overall, I was extremelly ... Read More
Having not been on an NCL cruise in almost 8 years I was a little unsure what to expect. But we were eager to get away from the cold of NE Pennsylvania and a have a nice break after the Thanksgiving holiday. Overall, I was extremelly pleased with our experince on the SKY. She may be an older ship, but having recently refurbished, she showed no signs of wear. Sure, she isn't the biggest and she is missing a lot of the bells and whistles....but one thing she does have is a really great price tag!! For just over $200 we spent 4-days and nights floating around the carribbean and loving it!! Try and find a place in South Florida (or anywhere) that will do that and include all meals and entertainment!! YOU CAN'T! I have read a lot of the negative reviews and do what I did...try it out yourself. You won't be disappointed! My partner and I travelled with several other couples. Most of us agreed that the ship was nice...but some prefer the Atlantis cruise where couples of our type are catered to. I found the staff, crew & ammentities just fine. I found the food, for the most part, to be quite good. Sure...it wasn't 5-star...but it was by no means diner fair. Definitely try the prime rib, the rack of lamb, the 8oz sirloin (add bleu cheese crumbles!) & the seafood and more seafood pasta (w/ Lobster tail). And remember...you're on vacation...order seconds...or mix and match entrees. I don't think there was one meal where we didn't order almost one of everything amongst our group. Sure...you could pay extra and go to one of the 'specialty' restaurants...but I don't know why you'd want to! The food was definitely better than I expected. My only major complaint was the slow service in the main dining rooms. Becuase it is freestyle, you run the risk of hitting the restaurant at it's peak time. Dinner took over two hours on two occasions...but we were a group of 10 and we had no where to go! It was worth the wait. Another minor complaint...Freeport.....BORING...Either book an excursion or stay on board and pretend it is a day at sea! All things considered, I would do the same cruise tomorrow! Worth every penny! And hell, it beats the 6" of snow we got over the weekend! Read Less
Sail Date November 2009
Well let me start out by saying I have noticed there is a large difference between short cruises and long cruises. The two short cruises we have taken one with Carnival and this one have been a much poorer quality than the long one we ... Read More
Well let me start out by saying I have noticed there is a large difference between short cruises and long cruises. The two short cruises we have taken one with Carnival and this one have been a much poorer quality than the long one we took. That said in comparison to our Carnival cruise this one was much better but still lacking in many ways. Overall you cannot beat cruising for the value. You get hotel, food, entertainment, childcare, and transportation at an unbelievable price. However I think NCL is cutting a few to many corners and dropping the ball in the customer service department. Now specifically the SKY experience. I loved the port of Miami. It was very easy to find and we stayed at the Holiday Inn Port side and were able to see our ship come in. What fun that was. Boarding was a breeze. The crew who checked us in were awesome I wish I could have taken them on the ship with us and gotten that kind of service the entire trip. We were greeted with Champaign but no map of the ship and I had to hunt down a Freestyle Daily. The cabins were not ready till precisely 2pm. We were able to drop off our stuff much earlier in the Dawn. Cabin: Cabin was sufficient for a short cruise but much too small for a long one. Bathroom was tiny. Storage was very limited we kept most of our stuff in suitcase under bed. The beds were very comfortable and room was clean. We did meet the cabin steward and gave him a stocking on Christmas. Entertainment: We found the ship-produced entertainment to be not nearly a good as on the Dawn. The stage was very small because of the size of the ship and the dancers and singers were not as good. The hired entertainment was very good, as we have found on all of our cruises. Rich Purpura the comedian was very funny and Dave Morgan guitar player singer was excellent. The Christmas Eve party was poorly planed and not overly festive but better than the St. Patrick's day party on the Dawn. The poolside band was ok but not nearly as good as others we have heard. The evening parties were not poolside they were inside which made them less fun I think. Kids Crew: Staff very friendly. Daughter complained that children were poorly behaved and this interrupted activities. We did not have a lot of time to participate because it was a holiday cruise. Food: Food ranged from excellent to poor. Appetizers were often better than meal. We did not eat at any specialty restaurants. Service in main dinning areas was very very slow and unorganized. They had plenty of staff but could not get anything done. We had a very hard time eating a complete meal without missing most of the evening activities. We often ate our meals in parts and often missed dessert entirely. We only ate at the buffet for breakfast and lunch. Meals were acceptable but not great. What you would expect form a buffet. It was very hard to get an early lunch nothing was available until noon. All restaurants and the buffet closed by 10 or 10:30. The Longboard bar was the only place to get food after that. Their menu was the same as the Blue Lagoon on the Dawn but the food was terrible in comparison. Overall ship: In very good shape for its age. As with all NCL ships it takes a while to figure out. Pool area was sufficient for size. Hot tubs were fairly hot and open late. Coffee bar is in a poor location. Much of the ship is under used and NCL should look at rearranging things. Clean and bright I did not mind the Hawaiian feel. Port: We were not impressed with Nassau and would most likely not go back there. Our Sailing excursion was canceled the first day because of high winds. We did not leave Nassau to go to the private island because the next day was to be windy as well. The captain secured us a slot to stay in Nassau an extra day. There were 3 NCL ships there. They did not announce this very well and we were all settled into the hot tub before we knew. We may have went back out had we know sooner. Excursions: Because our self-booked excursion was cancelled we booked the Atoll Island snorkel through NCL. This was very poorly run and the age and swimming requirements were not adhered to. Many of the people on this trip were not able to swim well enough. That aside we did enjoy the reef and were impressed with what we saw. The weather was poor but at least we were able to snorkel. We have taken 2 NCL excursions and booked our own and have found booking our own or exploring on our own to be a much more rewarding experience and a better use of our time. Christmas: We were on the ship for Christmas and Hanukkah and found it to be lacking in festivities. There were about 8 Christmas trees and at least that many Ginger bread houses but we did not see a Menorah anywhere. There was very soft Christmas music being played in only one of the restaurants. They did have quite a few activities happening on Christmas Eve however due to the very slow dinning service it was hard to attend more than one. They had caroling which we missed due to dinner then a Christmas party which was more big band dancing than Christmas and a Midnight service, which we did not attend. On Christmas Day they had Santa and Gifts for all the children in the Kids Crew including the teens. This was nice. There was very little else happening Christmas day different from any other day. Medical office: My daughter did become ill on Christmas night. We took her to the medical office after 11:00, which was nice they were open. They gave her an injection to stop nausea, which must have worked because she was fine till the next morning. They were not overly informative or personable but it was a free service, which I did not expect. I did have a hard time reaching them using the automated phone. Leaving the ship was uneventful. We had gray tags because we drove and wanted to take our time leaving. We waited till there was little to no line and got off. The process was a little slow but ok. We were happy to discover Customs did not care that we purchased much more alcohol than allowed. For Christmas gifts of course. We expected to be charged and were not. Things I missed from previous cruises: Coffee mugs at coffee bar, Dinning dress code, can do attitude by staff, food after midnight, large dessert selection in buffet, music on pool deck, spa pool, more days, Blue Lagoon food (longboard was awful), Mexican food, good theater with big stage and good shows. Things I enjoyed: meeting CC friends, Teen smoothie pass (best value NCL offers), longer hot tub hours and more hot tubs, Dave Morgan, comedian, no snow, Tortuga Rum!! I try to be optimistic and find the best in things. Had this not been a Christmas cruise I would have felt we got what we paid for and had a good time. Being a holiday cruise I feel NCL was lacking. I also feel their overall customer service was lacking. The layout of the ship, poor dinner service and all the activities being offered in a 4-hour block make it very hard to enjoy the total experience. We love the Freestyle aspect of NCL but we found on this cruise Freestyle was very limited and you had to choose between dessert and evening activities. We will be exploring other Cruise lines for future Cruises. Read Less
Sail Date December 2008
Had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday on the NCL Sky. Husband, son(16) and I flew into Ft Lauderdale on Friday - rented a car for the 3 days before left on the Sky on Monday 11/24. Did the tourist thing around Miami for three days. ... Read More
Had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday on the NCL Sky. Husband, son(16) and I flew into Ft Lauderdale on Friday - rented a car for the 3 days before left on the Sky on Monday 11/24. Did the tourist thing around Miami for three days. We stayed at the Best Western in North Miami in the Bayside Marina. Location was great - just north of South Beach and 15-20 minute drive to Port of Miami. There were several other people we met in the hotel that were booked on a cruise. Picked this hotel from recommendation of other cruise critic reviews. Older hotel recently renovated. Continental breakfast was okay. Hotel restaurant was great - on the marina. Would definitely stay again. Dropped rental car off at the Miami Int'l airport. Cab fair from MIA was set a flat rate of $24. Lot's of road construction around the drop off area for the rental car companies. Got turned around - was late checking in and Avis charged us another hour at $39. Did call Avis and complain because of the road construction, etc. Got a credit back for the $39. Embarkation was easy. We arrived at 11:15 - paper work processed quickly. After passport check, etc. was put into a holding area with many other people. They didn't start boarding until 12:00. That went pretty quick. Rooms were not ready until 2:00 - so had plenty of time to have lunch and find our way around the ship. You could tell the ship was an older ship - but was very clean. This was our second cruise. First was with Carnival. Was sort of dissappointed in the room size. Had a balcony. Size of balcony was just fine. Room was somewhat smaller than that we had on the Carnival ship, especially the bathroom. Shower was really small - but we were okay. We were across from the crew service area but never heard any noise. Short walk to elevators. Cabin 9233 - mid ship - great location. Staff was great. Cruise director - Matt - was funny. Shows were good - the comedian was kinda lame. No complaints at all about room stewards. They kept our room changed and cleaned in am and pm. We didn't pay the extra to dine in Cagney's or the Italian restaurant. They wanted $20 pp extra. Previous reviews indicated $10 pp - maybe they charged more because of the Thanksgiving week. Food was okay in the buffet lines, seemed to have almost the same everyday. Dinning room was different - great food and great service. Never waited more than 10 minutes. Love the freestyle dining though. Husband and son went to breafast bar every morning - I had room service. They were prompt with time requested. Ports of call were good. Didn't book excursions until we got on the ship on Monday 11/24. Waited in the lobby for the excursion desk to open - was first in line. Great Stirrip Cay, NCL's private island, was wonderful; but you better get out there early. Lounge chairs and umbrellas go really fast. Walked right off the ship onto the tender boat. Waited just a bit for the boat to fill up before leaving for the island. The beach was a bit crowded - but had a great day. Debarkation was quick too. We put our luggage out the night before so we didn't have to drag our bags through the hallways with many others. Just kept a bag with morning essentials and change of clothes. We didn't get off until 9:00 or so. Took cab back to MIA and then rented a car to drive to Ft Lauderdale. It costs us about $15-20 more for the rental car and the cab to MIA than had we taken the NCL shuttle to Ft Lauderdale - our flight didn't leave until 4:15 from FLL to Atl so we didn't want to hang out at the airport all day. Overall cruise was great - will definitely travel with NCL again. P Fountain - Atl, GA Read Less
Sail Date November 2008
Norwegian Sky Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.6
Dining 4.0 3.5
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.7
Family 3.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 4.5 3.9
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 3.9

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