The Norwegian Breakaway: a nice new ship on Norwegian with all the amenities and activities that most people would want. We had a nice time on our trip.
We took a week long cruise on the Breakaway from New York City to Bermuda. The cruise consisted of approximately 4 days at sea, and 3 days in Bermuda. This meant that we spent a fair amount of time on the ship itself. Fortunately, the ship was big, new, and had a lot to do.
First, let’s start with the embarkation process. We showed up at around 12 pm which is when embarkation began, and it wasn’t too long, but it wasn’t fast either. It was faster than going through check-in, security and boarding at the airport at least!
The ship itself was quite new and one of the biggest in Norwegian’s fleet. There were some minor issues on the ship we saw that were probably part of breaking in a newer ship (eg some weird smells on part of a deck). The ship was also quite massive. It fits about 4,000 guests and 1,600 crew members.
The room was nice–on part with most other rooms we’d stayed in on other ships. We had a small window in the room so we could peak out when we wanted to feel less confined. The television (which we made use of during our down time) did not have a good selection of shows or channels to watch unfortunately. We also got an internet package (due to a necessity) which was quite expensive, and slow.
The activities were fun. There is an ice bar that we checked out. It costs 20$ per person to go in, and they only allow a handful of people in there at a given time–likely so that the ice doesn’t start melting due to excessive body heat! It’s very cold in there, but they provide coats to wear. If you’ve not been to an ice bar before, this is an easy way to experience it.
The gym was decent–not small, but also not huge. The focus was definitely on the cardio equipment. We made use of the miniature golf course, the game room, and also spent some time in and around their pools.
There’s a huge ropes course at the top of the ship that is fun. It felt quite safe despite its height, and there is a Plank that let’s you dangle over the seas. The Plank is quite scary when you are up there. Unfortunately the automatic action camera wasn’t working when we conquered our fears.
They have several water slides, including a free-fall one which is quite fun. The drop is a little scary for that first fraction of a second. Here’s some video I took during one of my slides:
We caught a few shows on board, but they weren’t really my thing.
The restaurants were nice, with the customary attentive service that we are used to on cruises. All the free restaurants had the same menu, so changing restaurants was only to get a different view. Depending on the time, the wait times weren’t too long to get a table. The food was decent–sometimes overly salted unfortunately.
There were lots of families on the cruise, which meant a lot of children everywhere, and lots of people at the buffet during lunch. The lunch buffets was nice. The main downside was that there were a lot of people in the buffet lines at most times. Sometimes we’d also pop in to the buffet during dinner time to see if there was anything interesting before making our way to the main restaurants.
The shore days
Since this post is mostly about the ship itself, let me give you a short overview of what we did on the shore days (you can read more details in the linked posts). On the first day, our snorkeling excursion to a shipwreck site was “cancelled” due to weather, so we were routed to an alternative site. We had the choice to get a refund if we wanted, but decided to continue to the alternate site. It was decent. You can read more about that here, and see some of what we saw in the video below:
On the second day, we took a short ferry, followed by a bus and walk to go see the Crystal and Fantasy caves. This was our favorite activity in Bermuda during the cruise. You can read more about that here, and see some of what we saw in the our video below:
After the caves, we made our way to Hamilton and did some shopping and enjoyed the day in the capital. Remember that Bermuda can be quite expensive.
On the last day, we had another snorkeling excursion cancelled due to weather, so instead we went to Horseshoe Bay Beach for the early afternoon. It’s probably the most famous beach on the island and has beautiful pink sand. The waves You can take a look at my video to see some of what we saw:
In summary, this was a decent short cruise vacation that didn’t require a lot of planning. The convenience of the port being in NYC meant that it was easy to get to the cruise. The ship itself had a decent amount of amenities, good food, and enough activities to keep us busy.
In terms of the port, I would say that we’ve been on cruises with ports that have more to do, but we’ve also been to ports that have less to do; the port in Bermuda fits somewhere right in the middle for us. Bermuda did feel very safe to us and we had no trouble getting around the island. The foliage on the island is quite lush and tropical. Just keep in mind that the weather does seem to be a potential issue if you want to do water activities.