Number of Cruises: 1
Cruise Line: Norwegian
Ship: Norwegian Sea
Sailing Date: March 12th, 2005
Itinerary: Western Caribbean
This was our first cruise and we had a wonderful time. I planned the cruise several months ago for our daughters' and her best friends' graduation gift. They both turned 18 in November and had a great time. Living so close to Dallas we drove to Houston on Saturday morning and got to the ship around 1:00 p.m. We stood in line for a while but was on the ship quite quickly. The ship was larger than anything we have ever seen. We took a lot of pictures!
I just wouldn't be able to say enough good things about our experience but let me try. We ate most of our meals in the Big Apple Cafe' because of the variety, we could all choose whatever and how much we wanted. No one ever went hungry. The food was very good. We also ate a couple nights in the Seven Seas and Four Seasons restaurant and enjoyed them also. There was just so much food to choose from, we really enjoyed the BBQ's daily on the pool deck and the breakfast bar on the pool deck. Chocolate buffet on Thursday night was wonderful! We ate a lot of chocolate and took a lot of pictures. The staff was friendly and helpful but not pushy. We took our own drinks because we didn't want to purchase the soda package since we don't drink alot of soda's with the exception of my husband and he drinks Dr. Pepper which they did not have on the ship. We found that since we could get tea, coffee, milk and all kinds of juices in the Big Apple.....there really wasn't a need to bring much to drink.
The ship was clean and someone was cleaning all day long. Our room was cleaned a couple times everyday which was nice. We could get extra towels or anything we needed anytime we ask. We did find out the cabins are very small but since we were busy doing other things and didn't sit around in the cabin that was no problem for the 4 of us. I would suggest you not take a whole lot of clothes, we took entirely too many clothes which we had to find room to store. Most of the time we wore a swimsuit with a pair of shorts and flip flops. The only other clothes we needed were a couple outfits for dinner. We all had many clothes we never even wore.
Cozumel was our first stop, we docked at the pier and walked off the ship and it was a warm and beautiful. There are plenty of restaurants, shops and excursions to choose from. We walked around for a while and decided to take the Glass Bottom Boat/Snorkel excursion. We were picked up by boat at the dock and taken out in the ocean. We had taken our own snorkel and mask but they have that on the boat if you want to use theirs. The water was a little cool but we got use to it pretty quickly, we saw some pretty fish and the water was so clear of course you could see the bottom of the ocean. It was beautiful and we took alot of pictures. Don't forget to take an underwater camera and someone will be there to take pictures of you under water. We wrapped up our day at Cozumel by shopping along the streets, the girls got their hair braided and we ate at Senior' Frogs. The food was good, the music loud and a very "active" group!
Tuesday was our favorite stop. We had heard so many depressing things about Roatan that we were a little worried. I had taken some advice from one of the other travelers earlier in the year and scheduled a tour with "Victor". That is the best advice I can give you. Victor was great, he met us at the dock and took us for the day in his air conditioned van all over the Island. We went to the Iguana farm where they have a couple monkeys, some fish and birds and lots of iguana's. Victor will stay with you the whole day, take you to the sights he thinks you will be interested in or wherever you want to go. We drove around and stopped and took some of the most beautiful pictures of our who trip combined. He gave us a lot of history, took us shopping and to a beautiful beach. He charges $25 per person for the day and his email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. There are also many taxis at the dock when you get to Roatan and some school buses and other buses but we really enjoyed the "special attention" of our personal tour guide. Victor took us to his house and we met his wife and daughter and we enjoyed the laid back atmosphere of his country. Cancun & Cozumel are more "modernized" and all the excursions are very expensive. We chose to buy from the children & woman selling their goods on the sides of the road because this is their means of income. We would love to go spend more time in this "depressed" country.
Wednesday we stopped in Belize and we were tendered over to the island by motorboat. I get motion sick and was really worried about how long it would take to get there. The weather was good and the boat ride only took us about 10 minutes. There wasn't very much to do in Belize and we didn't have anything planned so we just walked and shopped. There are alot of people trying to sell you a lot of different things. We walked through the shops and out the back to the main street and had lunch upstairs in a nice "quaint" little ocean view restaurant. We watched the boats come in and out and then went back to the ship.
Thursday was our last stop and we couldn't wait to see Cancun. We were a little disappointed because it was coming up a cloud and we didn't know how long we would be able to stay. The water was choppy and the tender to the island was at least 45 minutes! It was a bit scary. Cancun is pretty, the water is pretty, a bit crowded but we enjoyed it. We didn't get to stay long because we didn't get there until after 12:00 noon and had to tender back to the ship by 3:00 pm. We took a lot of pictures, walked the beach, ate lunch at Fat Tuesday and shopped.
All in all we had a wonderful vacation with a lot of memories and alot of pictures and NCL definitely meet all our vacation needs. My husband and I will take another cruise in the future probably on a bigger ship.