There is a good 20 to 30 feet of ship between your balcony and the edge of the ship. It is mostly open, but there are obstructions. You can still see out, but there are some limitations. These balconies have the benefit of being larger and quieter, with no wind to speak of usually. I feel quite cozy in the them. But if it bothers you enough to ask about it you probably should switch. The absolute best balconies on the ship are the aft ones on the outboard sides - they are huge and also have views that are not obstructed.