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Joanie Howard

Age: 40

Occupation:Business Owner

Number of Cruises: 5

Cruise Line: Norwegian

Ship: Norwegian Wind

Sailing Date: February 28th, 2004

Itinerary: Western Caribbean

We had a wonderful experience on the Wind. This was our first experience with NCL. We have cruised in the past with Princess and Carnival. Princess is by far the nicest of the Cruise Lines we've expereince, but it also is much more expensive.

This cruise was very reasonable. In fact, so much so we were a little skeptical and concerned that the ship might not be top notch.

Embarkation was by far the quickest we have ever experienced. Totally hassle-free.

We really enjoyed the "Freestyle Dining" The normal designated seating times on other cruises has always been a bother. This was so much more relaxing and condusive to our life style.

One reason we chose this cruise was the ports of calls. We started out at Grand Cayman. We had planned to swim and snorkel with the stingrays, but the high seas washed out that idea. Instead, we rented a jeep $79.50 for the day and drove around the island on our own. This was a very economical way to see the island and at our own pace. The second stop was Roatan Hondurus. At this stop, we took a tour. "Ocean kayak and snorkeling" on the other side of the island. This was a lot fun. Diving is supposed to be great here, but we were waiting to dive in Cozumel.

At Belize, we did the "Cave Tubing" tour. It was a lot of fun. Although lots of the passengers booked this excursion, it didn't have the "cattle effect" we were worried about. We were on a bus with about 20 others. I sure wished we had our kids with us for this excursion. They would have really enjoyed it. (Kids were home with Grandma & Grandpa. -- Maybe next time.) The last stop was Cozumel. We booked our own dive trip by going into a local dive shop. We were on a smaller boat, but there were only 7 divers plus the boat captain and dive master. Absolutely the best day of the trip. The cost was $75 a diver including gear.

Although the Wind does not have the "Grand Lobby" that many of the bigger ships have, it is still a fun vacation. The ship is a little hard to manuveur. The lay out is not the best.

The couple we traveled with had never cruised before. They had a great time as well.

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