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Christopher

Age: 23

Occupation:Student

Number of Cruises: 7

Cruise Line: Norwegian

Ship: Norwegian Dawn

Sailing Date: 2010-06-1

Itinerary: Bermuda

Hey. Just to warn you this is going to be a long review, but i promise it to be informative. First let me tell a little about myself. Ive been on 7 cruises in the last 7 years. 2 on Disney, 3 on Carnival and 1 prior NCL. Ive been to almost every Eastern Caribbean port of Call. I read every post on this website prior to going on my vacation, which i will comment on later and I do research about the ports on my own before I depart.


Disembarkation: I live on Long Island, so this cruise was very convenient for me. A simple train ride to Penn Station then a taxi. Less than an hour and a half of travel time. As soon as i reached the pier, my luggage was taken by the porter and within 20 or 30 minutes I was on the ship. Very smooth, I must compliment them for this. A secret, I must tell you about is that the Venetian restaurant is open as soon as your on the ship and has no crowds. Unlike the Garden Cafe, which was very crowded so avoid this.


Food/Restaurants: I must say that after being on several cruises, I was revealed to be away from the schedule and having to be at dinner at a specific time. The Dawn has 9 restaurants, so there is plenty to choose from. The Garden Cafe or Buffet, was what you would expect. People complain about buffets, but they're meant to serve hundreds of people at a time. I hardly ever went to the Garden Cafe except for drinks. There are two free restaurants on board the Dawn. The larger of the two in the aft of the ship is the Venetian and the other near mid-ship is the Aqua. I perfered the Venetian because the Aqua had tables much closer together, but they both have the same menu. The left sides of these free restaurants stay the same throughout the whole cruise and the right changes each night. I didn't mind this at all. Other restaurants on board are Le Bistro(French), Impressions(Italian), Cagneys Steak House, Tapenyaki(Japanese Cooked at your Table), Salsa(Mexican), Bamboo(Asian) and a Sushi Bar. All of these require a surcharge, but its definitely worth it. Me and my girlfriend went to Cagneys, Le Bistros and Impressions. Impressions was ok, while Cagneys and Le Bistros was amazing.


Stateroom/Steward: Our room was an inside cabin on deck 9 forward. The cabin was the same size as any other inside cabin on other cruises. The beds were comfortable and we found the storage space fine. The bathroom was much larger than on other cruise. There even is a shower door rather than a curtain like other cruises which is very annoying during rough seas. I did my research before i went and knew they're was only one outlet in the stateroom, so i brought a outlet splitter, which worked perfectly. Our room stewardest were extremely nice and memorized our names surprisingly fast. My girlfriend even couldnt believe how she memorized our names so fast. The only complaint i can make is on two occasions they took our NCL towels and didnt replace them. I called reception and this was fixed extremely quick.


Bermuda: Like i said I did my research before, including books and maps. Bermuda is very different from the bahamas and Caribean. People are much nicer and on several cases the locals went out of theyre ways to help us. Unlike Bahamas and Caribean where you will be bothered to buy stuff and at times feel unsafe. Bermuda is exactly the opposite. Many people will tell you not to use the scooters including NCL. I feel that the scooters are the best way to have have the freedom to do what you want. Me and my girlfriend rented a scooter for all three days and i must say it was the best decision. Yes, they do drive on the left side of the road in Bermuda, but the speed limit is only 35 kph.(21.7mph) We drove the scooter all three days and filled it before we returned it and it was only $10. We used Ocleanders rentals which is right in the dockyard. Made a reservation online before for a cheaper rate, very convient.


Day 1: The ship arrived at 8am. Im going to warn you that Bermuda is a very expensive island, so don't expect great deals. We knew this before so we brought a lunch box. We ordered room service the night before, bagged it up, put it in the refrigerator. The next day we simply put the cooler on the scooter and head on our way. We got our scooters on the first day and head out. We went to Church Bay, then Horsebay. We relaxed here for a while and ate our lunch on the beach. We then headed to Somerset Bridge Watersports, where we rented a 15' Boston Whaler for 2hrs for $75. We also reserved this online before we went. Here we were able to cruise around and explore in our own boat checking out a ship wreck and little prvate islands. Afterwards we drove over to Hamilton to do a little shopping. Afterwards we headed back to the ship for dinner.


Day 2: We packed our lunch again and headed out to check out other beaches i have read about. Our first stop was Gibbs Lighthouse. Only $2.50pp to go to the top. It was a clear day so it was an amazing view. After we went to Warwick and Jobson Cove. Bring a camera because you'll want to take pictures. Next we went to a local beach that the buses don't stop at called West Whale Bay. Beautiful beach and very private, perfect for couples because we were the only ones their both times i went there. On our way there, we made a wrong turn and asked a local for directions. He was surprisingly helpful. He had us follow him on our scooter to the beach which was extremely nice, then gave us pointers about safety for the scooters. After a relaxing lunch on the beach we had reservations for scuba diving through Jessie James Cruises. A company not through the cruise that we planned before we went. They picked us up right at the cruise terminal and took us scuba diving to 3 different places for $65pp.


Day3: Once again we packed our lunch and headed out on our scooters. This day we had reservations for horseback riding at a place called Spicelands. Also not through the cruise ship. It was $80pp. Ive been horseback riding before and always wanted to go on a beach. We rode over to horseshoe bay on the horses. We were in a group of 4 other locals and 2 people that worked there. It was a lot of fun and an amazing experience. After we hoped on our scooters again and headed to the other side of the island to visit Crystal Caves. The caves were a must see sight and the tour guide gave a very interesting historic story about the caves. We ate our packed lunch here before heading back to return the scooters and hop on the ship.


Entertainment: NCL does a good job at spreading out events. On Tuesday we attended a thing called Bar Crawl: 5 bars and 5 drinks with games at each bar. Was really fun and i suggest this for anyone that is interested. The shows were really good. The comedy was hilarious. I wasnt a big fan of the second city improve shows but my girlfriend thought they were good. One show i recommend not missing is the Bollywood show. I wont give away any surprises but sit close. That's all im going to say. THe White Hot Party was also a blast. The cruise director really gets involved, which makes it even more enjoyable.


Norwegian Dawn: The ship itself is kept in really good shape. They are constantly cleaning and replacing rugs. The pool areas on sea days become crowded, but a secret is the Quiet zone at the front of the ship deck 13. There was always free lounge chairs and even a hidden hot tub. NCL almost always has deals going on. Throughout the whole cruise they have buckets of beer where you pay for 5 and get 6. perfect for sun bathing. If you are a latitudes member you get discounts in the shops and photos on board. The layout of the ship, i feel is thought out very well. There are a lot of public bathrooms and navigation around the ship is very simple.


Overall: I absolutely loved the freestyle dinning. It didn't matter what time i came back on the ship from Bermuda, i never had to worry about rushing to make it to dinner. Cruising is by far the cheapest way of travel. Think of it this way: it includes a hotel, airfare, entertainment and food. How can you go wrong. My main suggestions are avoid the buffet, people are always complaining about the buffets. The restaurants are always open so go to them. My last suggestion is use the scooters. Even though many people say don't, its definitely worth it. Just be safe. Well i hope that you have a great time, To many people get wrapped up in complaining, just try to remember your on vacation. Enjoy it.









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