November 2016 - Norwegian Getaway to Caribbean - Western
This was our second trip on the Getaway. While it has some flaws its a beautiful ship and makes for a great cruising experience.
First the flaws. The pool area is too small. Dont even try unless its a port day because you wont get anywhere near a lounge chair. (That could be helped if the staff would keep people from putting a towel on the chair at 8:00 AM and then leaving and assuming it was their chair for the day.). Some of the public areas seem too small for the size of the ship but overall that was not a big problem. Food is OK but not outstanding. Everybody raves about Cagney's steakhouse but I live in the midwest and what people on the coasts think is good steak is what I can get an an average restaurant at home. Just like I dont think Im going to get good seafood unless Im on the coast dont think you are going to get great steak when your at sea. Disembarkation was absolute Hell. We carried off our own luggage and were in a line that ran the length of the ship almost 3 times before ever getting to the customs hall. They had no crew directing traffic or explaining why it was taking so long (over an hour) and without knowing what was going on people stared getting angry. It was not like this on the previous cruise and I have no idea changed.
Now the good. The ship is really pretty. Its all understand elegance. The main dining rooms are lovely. The Tropicana Room looks like a Miami supper club from the 30s or 40s. The Sunset Bar was my favorite place to go sit and get a drink. I like the outdoor promenade feature where you can walk half way around deck 8 and most of the bars and restaurants on this deck have outdoor seating. The stateroom was nice and well designed. It certainly wasnt huge. This time we had a regular balcony cabin. Last time we had a mini-suite which did have a nicer bathroom with a tub but other than that was not all that different. The balcony was small but large enough for two people to sit comfortably. Storage is good and closet space adequate. I really like the freestyle dining concept. I dont want ot go on a vacation and have to wear my suit. This trip is very casual and you can wear jeans to any venue. Dont miss Burn the Floor for evening entertainment.
The itinerary was very nice. Harvest Caye, Norwegian's brand new private island is fantastic. It was only 2 weeks old when we were there and they are still putting some finishing touches on things but its a wonderful stop. The fresh water pool is gigantic and the beach is 7 acres in size. The water seemed a little cold the day we were there so we used the pool which was just steps away. There are excursions on the mainland which leave from there and there is a lagoon for kayaking etc. There are several places where you can get food and drink and a lighthouse where you can try a zipline over the water. Two negatives - the pier where the ship docks is quite far from land although there is a shuttle if you don't want to walk and the ship's food and beverage packages DO NOT apply on Harvest Caye.
This was a great cruise and I would recommend it. I likely will try a different ship and maybe cruise line next time, not because I didn't enjoy this one but because I think it would be a good idea to have some variety.