Posted February 5th, 2013, 03:40 PM
For those who've not cruised much at all, itinerary is probably the most important. For those of us who've been on a lot of cruises, the ship is usually the destination and the ports are secondary.
Is there any reason why you seem tied to NCL? There are a lot of other lines out there that might be more conducive to your needs. NCL is an OK line, but you'll find lots of kids on board, like you would on Royal Caribbean and Carnival. Have you looked at Princess or Celebrity? They are a bit more upscale and are known for a more refined cruise experience with what many feel is better food and service.
If you take the time to read a lot of threads, you'll see one of the least popular ports is Jamaica. Most consider it a dangerous place for many reasons and a lot of people tend to stay on the ship if it's part of an itinerary.
Can you manage a cruise longer than 7 days? The reason I ask is, we just returned from an 11 day cruise on Celebrity Equinox that might be of interest to you. On that itinerary they had things like cave tubing, arial trams through the rainforest, a trip through the Panama Canal, ziplining, kayaking and a lot of other active tours.
I would suggest finding a good local travel agent and just talking to them about what you need/want from a cruise. Pick up some brochures----it doesn't cost a thing and a good TA might provide some perks for your cruise like on board credit or wine or whatever.