What is it Like on a Cruise Ship?

I am back from my big adventure, a cruise around Hawaii. This was not our usual frugal-style vacation. My mom, who is so parsimonious she would walk downtown to pay a bill in order to avoid using a stamp, spent her life savings to take our entire extended family on this trip with Norwegian Cruise Lines.

So, perhaps you’re like me and have never been on a cruise before. What’s it like?

ncl pride of america hawaiiGetting on the ship involves a lot of red tape … showing ID various places, walking through warehouse-type buildings (and occasionally encountering stereotypical Hawaiian sorts like these, who are only too happy to pose for pictures).

ncl pride of america hawaiiFinally! We walked up another ramp and voila — the ship appeared!

ncl norwegian pride of america hawaii cruise ship(Actually, the photo above shows the ship at sea. When we got on, it was docked). It was huge, holding about 900 employees and around 2000 cruisers.

ncl pride of america lobby ceilingHere’s the ceiling in the boat’s lobby. Very fancy!

ncl pride of america lobby stairs cruise shipStaircase in the lobby — this was Norwegian Cruise Line’s Hawaiian ship, Pride of America.

Our rooms were the “cheap” ones, in the bottom of the ship. I don’t know what I was expecting, but it wasn’t a lot. Maybe opening my cabin door to a piece of machinery belching fumes? Anyway, I liked the room and thought it was fun.

ncl pride of america cabin cruise shipThe top two “bunks” folded down from the wall.

Even the hallway was cute, with lillypad carpeting.

ncl pride of america cruise ship hallSo, although I liked the room, it was a little small to spend too much time in. That’s okay though, because the ship had plenty of places to go. My favorite was the conservatory. I went there several times to read. It was sunny but covered, and quiet. I don’t think anyone was ever there when I went.

ncl cruise ship pride of america hawaii conservatoryEach night, there were shows to go to. I saw a magician, a few comedians, and some musical acts. Most of them were here:

hollywood ncl cruise ship pride of americaWhen the ship was moving, you could feel it rocking. It was pretty odd to go to a show and feel the room swaying around you!

ncl norwegian hawaii cruise ship pride of america poolAnd yes, it’s true that there is even a pool on the ship. The kids enjoyed it on a few occasions.

Whew, this is a lot of photos from our NCL Hawaii cruise. Is that enough about the cruise ship? Have I answered everything you ever wanted to know about cruise ships? If not, leave a question. You know you’ll be hearing from me for awhile :).

3 thoughts on “What is it Like on a Cruise Ship?

  1. Well I am amazed you did not address the food. Food is top drawer stuff in my world!

  2. It looks like a wonderful experience. I can only dream of doing this, which I do often–dream that is! I’d love to do a cruise in Alaska and Hawaii. Probably neither will ever happen. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

  3. Neat cruise ship, huh? When I did the same trip 5 years ago aboard Pride of America, I never even found The Conservatory! Seems like we took so many day trips that we never had time to just relax and enjoy even one whole day on the ship. When Joe and I are cruising over to the Grand Bahamas from FL in February 2012, I do intend to really enjoy the ship part! Yep, we are all signed up for our condo at Orange Lake in Kississimee from Jan. 28 – Feb. 4, then on down to Ft. Lauderdale for the Caribbean cruise deal from Feb. 5 – 11th. I don’t expect it to be as wonderful as Hawaii, but it should be pretty good in mid-winter. Glad your trip was outstanding!

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