Sunday, March 27, 2011

NCL Spirit, Part 3

I'm a big fan of NCL entertainment with fond memories of the musical, "Grease," that was performed on the old Sea in 1995, and the Jean Ann Ryan singers and dancers. Two major production shows this week lived up to those standards, particularly the new show called "Elements." A Russian acrobatic couple presented their own show another night, adding an appearance by their precious little son Ivan dressed as a lion.

A personal favorite of ours was the nightly music of Arvin and Emily in Champagne Charlie's. What a talented man and wife!

The NCL Spirit called on Costa Maya, Belize, Roatan, and Cozumel. Belize was the only new port for us, and we decided to try cave tubing. The ride to get to the cave takes almost an hour, and frankly, if you‘ve gone tubing anywhere else (like on the Guadaloupe in central Texas), this one is pretty lame except for the beauty of floating in the dark cave. You go with a group and must be led by a qualified guide through the cave. Everyone wears little headlamps like miners.

In Roatan, we hit Tabyana Beach, a favorite for snorkeling, but many on the ship just went to Mahogany Bay Beach right at the Mahogany Bay pier where the Spirit docked. You can buy a roundtrip chairlift pass for all day at $12 person, or just walk there and back, and enjoy a day at the beach. Some ships dock downtown instead, however, and that's a 10-15 minute taxi ride away.

Final assessment: it was a wonderful, convenient, 65th birthday cruise for Ben...and one that dispelled my long-held opinion of the Spirit. Now, would we ever sail during spring break again? Not unless our yet unborn grandchildren were driving the date!

The Spirit is a well maintained vessel, but she is due for renovation. That will take place in September when she enters dry dock before repositioning to Barcelona. Good sailing to you, Spirit!

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