Which cruise?

Mar 29th, 2005, 10:31 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 27
Which cruise?

We went on our first cruise in September on the Carnival Legend to the Caribbean and had the time of our lives. My husband will be 40 next February and we have decided to cruise again. We have narrowed the possibilites down to the following:
Dawn Princess: San Francisco,Catalina Island,Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan,Cabo San Lucas,San Diego.
Norwegian Dawn:NY,Ochios Rios,Grand Cayman,Roatan,Belize City,Cozumel,Great Stirrup Cay.
Norwegian Spirit:NY,St Thomas,Antigua,Barbados,St Maarten,Tortola.
I would be grateful for any input anyone has both on the ships and destinations.
alih is offline  
Mar 29th, 2005, 11:19 AM
  #2  
JJ5
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 16,253
I like the big Princess ships. If you like big ships, you will like Dawn.

Don't know about the others, but do know that I just went on a West.Carib. to G. Caymon/ Ocho Rios and I think those two ports are not great. G. Cayman has way too much damage from Huricane Ivan still to be fixed and the reef got stripped. I loved Cozumel though. What do you want to do? Snorkel?

If it was I, I would go for the Dawn Princess itinerary. If you get a balcony on that ship, get it on the Caribe level. They are bigger and they are 1/2 covered.
JJ5 is offline  
Apr 13th, 2005, 02:16 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 7
I have been on the Dawn Princess twice, (Caribbean 1998 and Alaska 2003). I feel that the food and entertainment quality had slipped over the years. Other than that, the service and condition of the ship were great. She is a lovely ship.
Solinda is offline  
Apr 14th, 2005, 07:25 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 651
The Dawn is a nice ship, a bit older but in good repair as of December of '03.

Comparing Princess to Carnival, I would say that the food & service are a big step up. However, if you like live music/nightlife, you may find Princess to be a bit sleepy.

NCL seems to have more detractors than other lines--not sure if I would sail them.

Note this if you cruise out of San Fran in February, you're not going to have bathing suit weather for the first/last days of the cruise. Not sure if that's important to you.

You might open your options to some other ships going to the Caribbean. Southern Carib. in particular is nice (though you go have to get to Puerto Rico...)

Cheers!
triathlete is offline  
Apr 14th, 2005, 10:41 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 1,276
If I read your post correctly you are looking at NCL cruises not Princess. My husband and I sailed on the Norwegian Dawn a few years ago doing Ocho Rios, Cayman, Costa Maya and Cozumel. Had a great trip, but didn't get to do much in Cayman - the weather was too rough. We are seriously looking at doing a Norwegian Sun itinerary out of (I think) Houston that goes to Cayman, Belize, Roatan, and Cozumel. As for the third one, We have cruised to some of the places and spent an entire week on St. Martin. Antigua and Barbados are wonderful (as is St. Maarten, although I prefer the French side) and although I'm not a shoper I still liked St. Thomas when we stopped there. Can't speak to the Mexican itinerary. NCL does a great job with their freestyle dining and the entertainment we got was wonderful. You'll have a great time!
jcasale is offline  
Apr 14th, 2005, 04:20 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 686
I spent 2 weeks on the Dawn Princess last summer and had a marvelous time. Service and food were excellent.

There was an engine issue last fall where the ship couldn't make some ports on time but it was resolved in November. People were compensated properly for the inconvenience. I think it was an issue of timing and trying to find the best time to take the ship out of service and get it fixed.

All of the recent reports on the Dawn have been excellent.
Theresa is offline  
Apr 14th, 2005, 05:20 PM
  #7  
JJ5
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 16,253
Actually without even considering the ship, which I think is fine- IMHO and you may not agree- but I have been to the other ports- the Princess Dawn has the most intriguing ports. Plus you have SF and San Diego both. Wow!
JJ5 is offline  
Apr 14th, 2005, 06:29 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 61
Hello,

Princess is a higher quality level, generally speaking, from Norwegian, but Princess' prices are quite similar, so it should be more a case of matching personal preferences than to price considerations. As far as itineraries, the Norwegian Dawn to Roatan and Belize City, is less "touristy" than the other itineraries. Most of the Mexican ports are quite "touristy" because of the frequent visits of the cruise ships. Definitely get out of the main tourism areas in Mexico and you will see more authentic culture. There are excellent companies that can do individualized shore excursions in all of these ports that allow you to get away from the main tourist areas.

Best Regards,
Julia
j_elzie is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 05:22 AM.