NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from Winter2011Bride. Show Winter2011Bride's posts

    NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    Have you or anyone you know taken the NCL Pride of America?  It leaves from Honolulu and goes to Maui, Hilo, Kona, Kauai and comes back to Honolulu.  We are thinking of arriving a couple of days before the cruise and spending some time in Honolulu looking at Pearl Harbor, etc.  Also leaving a couple of days before because we are getting married in February and can't completely trust the weather.   
       
        
        

     
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from trex509. Show trex509's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    Hi Winter2011Bride!  We haven't taken the Pride of America but Fi and I did a NCL cruise in the Caribbean (NCL Dawn).  The ship was beautiful and I really liked the "freestyle" cruising, meaning you don't have an assigned dinner time and you aren't seated with strangers.  The food was good, the room was decent (although I wish we had paid extra to have a window) and all in all, it was a good vacation.

    Just to ask though: have you guys done a cruise before?  I hadn't, and I didn't really like it.  We spent much more time on the ship than on the destinations, and I just found it boring.  We did use the spa on one of our sea days (did the couples massage for a crazy $350, but it was AWESOME).

    I did go to Hawaii with my mom a few years ago.  We spent a week on Maui, rented a car, and we had such an amazing time!  I think you get to see more of the islands if you are on your own.  But if you like cruising, I'm sure you'll love it!

    PS.  my friends parents recently did a Hawaii cruise, I'm pretty sure it was NCL, and they loved it!  But they are cruisers.

    Not sure if this helped at all... sorry!  :)
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from Winter2011Bride. Show Winter2011Bride's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    Hi Trex
    I have taken Carnival (which I didn't like) and Royal Caribbean and he has taken Royal Caribbean twice.  It's a good budget friendly option for getting to Hawaii.  We are also thinking of staying a few days before to check out some of the sites of Honolulu.  Glad that you liked the "freestyle" plan.  We were a little concerned about that, not having had that option before.    
     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from trex509. Show trex509's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    Oh good!  As long as you guys know you will like cruising, I'm sure you'll love it!  My FI has cruised before and he liked NCL as a cruise line.  The service was really good and he said the food was better than a lot of cruise lines, not the best, but great value.  I think his parents have done a Hawaii cruise (long time ago, his parents cruise like twice a year!) and they said the coolest thing was seeing the volcanoes at night from the cruise ship.  They could see the glowing of fresh lava, which sounds really neat!

    Spending a few days in Hawaii before hand also sounds like a great idea.  We were worried about the flight making us miss the departure, so we flew into Miami a day early and that was nice to not be worried about it.
     
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    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    Yes the fact that you can see the volcanoes at night sounds awesome to us as well.  Thanks for the info that your FI likes NCL, there was such a difference between Carnival and RC that I wasn't sure what to accept.  I'm afraid if we don't leave a few days earlier that it will snow and we won't get out.  That would be a real downer. 
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from trex509. Show trex509's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    This is what FI says about the other cruise lines:

    Carnival:  basically, a circus.  He said they cater to a younger crowd so it tends to be a more spring break atmosphere, which I woudl have hated.  I don't drink much and I hate being around drunk people.

    Royal Caribbean:  we considered RC because FI says the food is a bit better than NCL (according to his parents, who cruise a TON).  However, I really wanted the freestyle cruising on NCL, same reason Cici pointed out.  I also hate sitting with strangers.

    FI also said that RC and NCL tend to have an older crowd, but I didn't care about that.  We actually did meet some really nice couples around our age.  And people call us an old couple anyway, so we had fun with some of the more mature guests on our excursions.  :)

    One nice tip in case you don't drink a lot like us:  we ordered a bottle of champagne at dinner one night, but we can't drink a whole bottle at once.  On the cruise, they will recork it and give you a claim ticket for your bottle.  Then you can drink the rest another time at any restaurant, you just give them your ticket and they go find it in the cooler.  Isn't that awesome???  :)

    Cici: where are you guys doing your honeymoon?
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from allreadymarried. Show allreadymarried's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    NCL has a history of buying ships from other lines and refurbishing them then advertising to make them look as though they are new.  I would try to look at their website to see when the ship you are interested on was actually built.  I personally would not want to be on an older boat that had a section added to it which NCL has done.  I personally like Princess and Holland America the best.  November is the end of the hurricane season so it could be hit or miss.  I have been on cruises during that time and have great weather and other times a few days where it rained off and on but did not ruin our vacation.

     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from trex509. Show trex509's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    Hi ELM,

    I've only been on one cruise so I'm far from an expert!  We did the NCL Dawn to Eastern Caribbean (I think) in March 2008.  It was a great trip (if you like cruising, which for me was fun to do once, but I will probably not do again).  We had 4 scheduled stops:

    Dominican Republic, Samana:  we took an excursion to the Salto El Limon waterfall.  *AWESOME*!!!  We rode horses through the rainforest and saw the most amazing waterfall I've ever seen.  This was the highlight of the entire trip!

    British Virgin Islands, Tortola:  we took an excursion to Virgin Gorda.  This one was also really cool and fun!

    US Virgin Islands, St. Thomas:  we took the water island bike ride excursion. This one I wish we hadn't done.  It was really hard and we just felt busy the whole trip.  And since you walk right off the boat into town in St Thomas, I wish we had just explored this on our own.

    We were suppsoed to have a 4th stop at a private island where we were planning to just hang on the beach all day, but it go canceled because of the weather (total bummer!!!!).  So out of 7 days, we got 3 days in ports, the rest at sea, which is what I found boring.  However, the days we were in port I LOVED, I just wish there was more exploring and less being at sea.

    Anyway, that's my 2 cents! 

    Oh, and Nov is a tricky time for the Caribbean.  My friend and I went to Cancun in Oct and we had great weather, but they had a hurricane the week before and the week after.  Sounds like you'd be at the end of hurricane season, but I'd maybe talk to a travel agent just to be sure.  Oh, and I *loved* Cancun in Oct (I'd never go during spring break) but it was off season, we got a great deal and it was really quiet and fun.  And so many cool places to go like the Mayan ruins, snorkeling, etc, etc. 

    ETA:  We left out of Miami, which was fun!  We had an extra day to expore South Beach, etc which I did enjoy!  Also, the NCL Pearl is the sister ship to the NCL Dawn (our ship) I think.  It was a great ship, FI really liked it!  It was relatively new when we took our trip.

    Oh: Just called FI and he said the NCL Epic is their new ship, that is supposed to be huge and really nice!!! He said it is their new flagship.  He was all excited that I mentioned it, thinking I wanted to do another cruise!  haha!
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from trex509. Show trex509's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    Hi Cici:  yeah, we were bummed!  But I actually want to do Hawaii like you are for our honeymoon anyway, so it is okay!  Did you use a travel agent to book your trip?  If so, would you recommend them?  We want to go maybe Feb 2011, but I'm not sure how soon I should start thinking about planning it!
     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from easydoesit2. Show easydoesit2's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    I don't know how you feel about gambling, but there is little if any casino action on the Hawaiian Island cruises because they are rarely in international waters.
    I have been on many cruises over the years, and my very favorite was out of Long Beach (San Pedro, actually, I think) on the Norwegian Star to the Mexican Riviera, i.e. Mexico's West Coast.  Something you may want to look into.
     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from Winter2011Bride. Show Winter2011Bride's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    Hi Trex
    We are going in February 2011.  We hope on the NCL Cruise. 
     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from cosmogirl. Show cosmogirl's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    One huge drawback for doing the cruise would be the lack of time to spend IN Hawaii.  You can go on a cruise anywhere.....Hawaii is so special, I can't imagine having to leave the gorgeous places to get back to the ship. 

    When the itinerary includes so many ports, you spend an awful lot of your time on the ship, with not even a full day in some places, and you're locked into what you can do in port because you have to be back to the ship by a certain time.

    Hawaii is so extraordinary, I'd consider staying on land instead. 

    (I've never been there, but that's what I've heard anyway.)

     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from Winter2011Bride. Show Winter2011Bride's posts

    Re: NCL - Hawaiian Cruise??

    We like the idea of cruising and it does dock overnight in some of the ports.  We hope to stay in Honolulu a few days beforehand to see more of the sights there (Pearl Harbor, Punch Bowl, etc.)  To us it's a very economical way to see the islands as it's pretty much an all-inclusive vacation.   
     
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