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COSCruisers

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About COSCruisers

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Colorado Springs
  • Interests
    History culture photography
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Norwegian
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Caribbean

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  1. Saturday was a sea day for us. The seas were rough; it was windy; the promenade deck was closed due to wind and waves. It was a relaxed day for us. We had reserved the behind the scenes tour of the ship and thoroughly enjoyed it. There are so many people working hard that we can enjoy our vacation! Crew mess: Main galley: In the afternoon I attended the crew talent show in the theater. It was very good--some very talented singers as well as the bartender juggler! Our favorite MDR server did a Thai dance with a friend. That evening we attended the Jackson Rayne magic show in the theater. It was great!!! We ended the evening with a drink before going to our stateroom for final packing. The directions for disembarkation were very clear in the daily. Disembarkation was really pretty efficient. There did seem to be a bit of a kink that the fuel tender arrived when we were all on deck; that seemed to put a halt to all movement on our side of the ship. Once inside the terminal everything went well. All our bags were right together. Customs was friendly and efficient. Our bus to the airport was right outside waiting. I certainly hope it's clear after reading this far that we REALLY enjoyed our first cruise. We are already planning another!
  2. Day 6--Cozumel or Not After a rough night sailing we almost arrived at Cozumel. This was the day that the two Carnival ships collided in port. Our captain announced that it was too windy and too dangerous to dock that day; this was about an hour before the two Carnivals had their incident. A revised daily was rushed out with augmented activities. We enjoyed a relaxed day aboard. For me there's almost nothing better than enjoying coffee on the balcony while we are sailing. In the we enjoyed "The Secret Life of Pets 2" in the Stardust Theater. Our daughter went to see "Crazy Rich Asians" later in the afternoon while we napped. After another great dinner in the Aqua MDR, we went to the theater to enjoy "Elements." It was booked as the best show onboard, although, honestly, I enjoyed the two musical productions more--a personal preference. We capped the evening with a drink up at the Topsiders Bar. Even though we missed Cozumel, it was a very enjoyable day.
  3. Have a good cruise, Kirk. We really enjoyed the ship and crew.
  4. Day 6--Cozumel or Not After a rough night sailing we almost arrived at Cozumel. This was the day that the two Carnival ships collided in port. Our captain announced that it was too windy and too dangerous to dock that day; this was about an hour before the two Carnivals had their incident. A revised daily was rushed out with augmented activities. We enjoyed a relaxed day aboard. For me there's almost nothing better than enjoying coffee on the balcony while we are sailing. In the we enjoyed "The Secret Life of Pets 2" in the Stardust Theater. Our daughter went to see "Crazy Rich Asians" later in the afternoon while we napped. After another great dinner in the Aqua MDR, we went to the theater to enjoy "Elements." It was booked as the best show onboard, although, honestly, I enjoyed the two musical productions more--a personal preference. We capped the evening with a drink up at the Topsiders Bar. Even though we missed Cozumel, it was a very enjoyable day.
  5. Day 5 of our cruise was Roatan. I wondered before and early in the cruise about changing time zones. NCL follows local time zones. There is plenty of notice given in both the daily and in announcements to set clocks back or move ahead and we moved to new time zones. We hit rainy conditions in Roatan. The shopping is right at the foot of the pier. We had booked the Gumbalimba Park monkey excursion. It began to rain hard right after we left the enclosed areas of the park. We had umbrellas and ponchos, but we were still soaked. We really enjoyed the time with the birds and the monkeys. Because the weather was inclement, on of our guide's planned excursion had been cancelled. She had joined our scheduled guide so they both were with our group. Each contributed information for us as well as shared their camaraderie. We enjoyed seeing sloths and iguanas. In fact, one of our guides had quite a palate for iguana. There was also a small history museum in addition to the insectarium. There was lots of beautiful scenery in the park. The pouring rain was unfortunate; I think on a nice day there would be tons to do and see there. A bus (or several) run shuttle back to the pier so you can stay after the tour officially ends.
  6. Day 4 was our day in Belize. We had booked the excursion to the Mayan Cultural Center. After a brief ferry ride to the mainland and an hour bus ride we arrived at the center. The Mayan lady there explained and showed typical life in a Mayan home. We ground our own corn and made our own tortilla. A change of building and we learned about the musical instruments and other facets of Mayan life. A delicious lunch followed. There a lady was selling coconut rum. She actually cut the coconut and filled it with the rum. Sadly, our time there was drawing to an end before daughter and I had a chance to fully enjoy the wine. We then went to a nearby cacao farm. The owners' son took us up the hill past the cacao trees and showed us the beans allowing us to taste them too. His sister demonstrated how the dust from the husks is wind winnowed out. Bus and ferry ride from Independence Village followed. That evening was another great theater show "Showdown." The music and singing were great. We ended the evening with dessert and drinks at O'Sheehan's while enjoying a tribute night in honor of The Beatles and Queen.
  7. In the evening we enjoyed a fantastic show by the aerialists in theater followed by our O'Sheehan's drink. One of my favorite people on the cruise was the bartender at the wine and mixed drinks bar at the buffet. I wish I would have gotten his name. He was from India. He mixed an incredible Jack and Coke and had a very friendly, outgoing personality. I looked for him nightly.
  8. Day 3 we were at Costa Maya. Our excursion was to the Kohunlich ruins--a very fascinating site. The ride was rather lengthy, but the guide did a great job with local information on the way. The ruins are about 1500 years old and are only partly unearthed in the jungle after being discovered in 1969. It was hot and humid here even in December. Daughter and I enjoyed the excursion and found all the information very interesting. I am afraid of heights, but I was able to climb this pyramid with the rope railings provided. The site has one of the best preserved Mayan ball courts anywhere. Back at the ship we enjoyed dinner at the buffet in deference to wife's seasickness of the night before.
  9. My wife got seriously seasick at the end of Day 2 evening. Thankfully, she had gotten a prescription of Scopolomine before sailing. Although she was out of commission for Day 3's shore excursion, the Scopolomine had calmed her stomach by the following evening. She had not expected to get seasick. I would highly recommend getting a prescription from your physician before sailing.
  10. Day 2 was a sea day. While my ladies were being pampered in the spa with facials, I went to the Port and Tour Talk. This was a good presentation about upcoming excursions. I had already pre-booked our excursions so for me this was probably not a good use of time. However, if you have not booked your excursions in advance, this would be very beneficial. I attended the Digital Camera Class immediately following. This was presented by the photo shop manager. It had some very good techniques for point-and-shoot and full-fledged DSLR's. I met the girls in the buffet for a delicious lunch. In the afternoon we went to the Jackson Rayne Magic presentation in the Bliss Lounge. He explained at the start that this was more workshop that show. It was very interesting and entertaining. The buffet on Dawn is FANTASTIC!!! I am a big hamburger fan, and the hamburgers here are to die for! After dinner we went to Soul Rockin' Nights--a great musical. There were no reservations; you just showed up and walked into the theater. It was a very enjoyable evening topped off with drinks at O'Sheehan's. We are not late night folk so we retired to our stateroom where the daughter watched a movie, I hung out on the balcony, and the wife relaxed reading.
  11. One of the things that I found most helpful from the previous poster was seeing the dailys--the newspapers that show the day's activities. I suddenly felt confident that there were indeed activities I would enjoy.
  12. The galley crew went all out decorating for Christmas.
  13. Our travel agent recommended one of the smaller ships so we would not be overwhelmed by crowds and lines on our first cruise. That was a very wise choice! Dawn was just the right size. Plenty of amenities and restaurants but very manageable size. Honestly, I had buyer's remorse after booking. I do not swim or hang on the beach, and we were going to the Western Caribbean. I was never disappointed on the ship or lacking of something enjoyable to do. Our adult daughter traveled with us so we booked a mini-suite with a balcony. It was plenty spacious for the 3 of us. The only drawback was her pull out bed from the sofa was right in front of the balcony door; the walking space at the foot of her bed was not wide enough for my big feet. The steward put up her bed the first day of the cruise, but thereafter it was left out all day. Another minor disappointment was there were no towel animals. I was really looking forward to these for the daughter, but, alas, perhaps that has been deleted from NCL. It's not a big loss considering all the other amenities on the ship. We sailed from Tampa what seemed like a bit late--30 minutes or so following the Carnival ship that was hit in Cozumel out of Tampa. The actual boarding seems a bit chaotic, but it just takes a while and patience in the lines. We were able to drop off our carry-on bags in the stateroom. The checked bags were delivered in a very timely manner. We got a light lunch in the buffet. It was great going up on deck to watch the departure with a drink. The wife and daughter were not so much into that; they enjoyed their drinks in loungers in the shade. I had made reservations in advance for the Aqua MDR that night since I thought we really wouldn't know what we were doing. At no time on the cruise did I feel inadequately dressed wearing a casual collared shirt and casual pants; having to dress up had kept me off cruises for decades. If that is a concern for you, you have no worries. Like most first timers, we way over packed. A couple of collared button-down shirts, casual pants, plus whatever more casual clothes--shorts, tank top or two, etc.--you need for excursions or water sports is all that is needed. I did take a light jacket that I never needed even on the deck at night, but we were returning to Chicago in December. I would recommend umbrellas and rain poncho to be safe along with a broad-brim hat for the sun. After a bit of exploring the ship and making spa appointments for wife and daughter for facials the next day, we retired to our stateroom. For me there is no better place that relaxing on the balcony enjoying a cup of coffee, and that's where I was as we sailed out to sea from Tampa.
  14. We were brand new cruisers on the Dawn on December 15 to the Western Caribbean from Tampa. We had a great time. I will try to add some information that would have helped me as a new cruiser. It is the only way to travel!
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