6 Things You Can Only Do on Norwegian Cruise Line
Norwegian Cruise Line is one of the biggest cruise lines in the world, and just like other lines, they have unique experiences and features on their ships that set them apart. We set out to find some of what makes Norwegian unique that you won’t find anywhere else at sea.
1. Eat (and Drink!) in Margaritaville at Sea
Which Ships: Norwegian Escape, Norwegian Bliss, Norwegian Getaway, and Norwegian Breakaway
Why It’s Unique: Most everyone has heard of Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville, if not for the popular landside restaurant/bars, but for the song that started them all. The incredibly popular venue, complete with a full-service bar, food menu, and gift shop on land headed to sea for the first time in a partnership with Norwegian Cruise Line.
Why You Should Do It: Who doesn’t love a good margarita or tropics-inspired cocktail? These locations are the only place where you’ll be able to enjoy a Cheeseburger in Paradise (I like mine with lettuce and tomato, Heinz 57, and French fried potatoes) or Volcano Nachos while sailing in the Caribbean waters that inspired the song.
Tip: You can find a smaller, bar-only version of Margaritaville on Norwegian Star and Norwegian Escape, called the 5 O’Clock Somewhere Bar.
2. Race Go-Karts
Which Ships: Norwegian Bliss and Norwegian Joy
Why It’s Unique: We would have never thought we’d live to see a go-kart track on a cruise ship, but that’s exactly what Norwegian has done on their two newest cruise ships.
Why You Should Do It: If you already love go-karting, this is a great time to experience a new track in a very unique setting. If you’ve never tried it, there’s no time like the present! Plus you’ll get to say you’ve raced little cars around on top of the ocean.
3. Try a Cocktail in an Ice Bar
Which Ships: Norwegian Epic, Norwegian Breakaway, and Norwegian Getaway
Why It’s Unique: The ice bar on these three Norwegian ships is likely the coldest place in the Caribbean, and a great way to cool down after a day in the sun. The chairs, walls, bar, and even drinking glasses are all made of ice.
Why You Should Do It: This is a unique experience no matter where you are, whether on land or sea. If you’re on one of the ships that includes this watering hole, don’t miss out. You pay a flat price for a pass to get in (cheaper for those with a beverage package), and that provides you with a big warm parka, gloves, and two cocktails at the bar. The bar is kept at a cool 17 degrees Fahrenheit and the pass allows for 45 minutes inside (you really wouldn’t want to stay any longer than that), so bundling up is essential.
4. Enjoy Free Drinks (Without Sailing on a Luxury Line)
Which Ships: Norwegian Sky and Norwegian Sun
Why It’s Unique: In the last several years, Norwegian has transitioned two of their ships to an all-inclusive model, unlike anything their major competitors have done. Once onboard these two vessels, you don’t have to worry about paying for nearly all beverages.
Why You Should Do It: Both Norwegian Sun and Sky operate shorter voyages from Florida, so if this is the type of cruise you’re looking for and you enjoy lots of drinks during vacation, these ships are worth looking into. You won’t find another program like this on other major cruise lines. An added bonus: the offer extends to Norwegian’s private Bahamian island, Great Stirrup Cay when you sail one of these ships there.
5. Escape into a Waterfall Grotto
Which Ship: Norwegian Escape
Why It’s Unique: Most large ships include an adults-only deck, but Norwegian Escape takes it a step further with a waterfall grotto in the 18-and-older aft Spice H2O area.
Why You Should Do It: The water is only about ankle deep so it’s not for swimming, but the grotto is the perfect place to cool off with water falling from the ceiling and a break from the sun in the rocky formation-designed feature. There’s nothing to do in the grotto per se, but it makes for a refreshing spot with soothing waterfall sounds.
6. See Broadway's 'Rock of Ages'
Which Ship: Norwegian Breakaway
Why It’s Unique: Multiple cruise lines feature Broadway shows aboard their ships, but only Norwegian offers the smash-hit production 'Rock of Ages.'
Why You Should Do It: How often can you see a five-time Tony Award-nominated musical for free, and without dealing with the crowds in New York’s Theater District? This story of a small-town boy and girl in the 80s trying to make it big in Los Angeles gets the crowd tapping their toes and dancing in their seats. You shouldn't miss the opportunity to see a show like this on Norwegian Breakaway.