NCL Dawn Cruising Review

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San Juan, St. Thomas, Tortola, Great Stirrup Cay

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San Juan, Puerto Rico

San Juan 1/5 Monday, April 21, 2003
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Miami
Embarkation Port of Miami
At Sea
San Juan
St. Thomas
Tortola
At Sea
Great Stirrup Cay
Disembarkation

Enroute to San Juan

Just of San Juan, 18 deg. 46 min. N, 66 deg. 28 min. W. 79 deg. F at 8:45 a.m. and barometer is steady. Sea temperature is 80 deg. F. It's partly cloudy with a light northwest wind at 6 knots. Sunrise 6:11, sunset at 6:42 p.m. The seas have calmed quite a bit, but the room creaks... alot ! I was in some other deck 8 cabins and heard the same thing. However, I was in a deck 9 cabin and there was not creaking. If the ship moves at all, there are creaks from behind the wall forward, then alot of sounds towards the ceiling near the door. These cabin units are prefab-- they make them in advance then just roll them into place while the ship is being built. A very efficient process, but in this case, I think they must have forgot to secure them well. Oddly enough, in such a well-planned ship, this is the only flaw I have found so far. The Star and Dawn were designed for Orient itineraries, and the staff told me that the casino alone (in Far East locales) can make more than $10 million a week just from the casino. However, in the Miami departure location, she makes significantly less.

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Port Arrival

Spa

After a wonderful Seven Sea's massage at the Mandarin Spa, the ship arrived at the port in San Juan around 11:30 a.m. We actually arrived an hour earlier than planned, which was good because it would only be sunny for the first part of the day.

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Touring Old Town San Juan

Old Town San Juan

Cell phones work in San Juan, at least my Verizon one did, but was on digital roaming. While I did not try to call out, I did leave the phone on in case any business colleagues were trying to get through.

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Map of San Juan

Map

Old Town San Juan is easy to get around, and there are plenty of taxi's. Sample some local food, it's spicy and quite tasty.

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Afternoon

Afternoon on the Ship

By mid afternoon, the rains started. Good time to relax in one of the many hot tubs aboard ship.

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Ben and Jerry's

Ice Cream

I departed the ship and took a $10 taxi to the Old Town part of San Juan. I finally found a internet terminal at Ben and Jerry's (along with some great ice cream) for $5.00 for 15 minutes. This is a great alternative to sample the local culture and get access to the internet. I always seek out internet cafes, the most unique was a 100 year old bar converted to a internet cafe in Cartegena, Colombia.

Ice Cream and Internet
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San Juan

Map

Downtown San Juan was very very hot, but the clouds slowly moved in, and by the afternoon provided some relief, but with a fairly chilly rain.

A taxi is only $10.00 to downtown from our pier. The other cruise ship pier is located at the downtown area.
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San Juan

Flowers

Then went in search of a flower shop and ended up at a quaint designer shop which had a large array of glass art and flowers. I wanted to get a few arrangements for Amanda (the Concierge) and the Reception Staff, which is always very helpful, and very under appreciated. While waiting for the flowers, I ate a nice local lunch at Papa Maria's just down the street.

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Dinner at Aqua

Aqua

Aqua is one of the "free" main restaurants situated on deck 6 in the forward part of the ship. The decor is beautiful, with a blue hue and star-field ceiling. The food was good, but not like at the "cover-charge" restaurants. Service was equally good as the other restaurants. I had the swordfish which was excellently prepared.

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Aqua

Aqua Restaurant

This restaurant is another example of the incredible interior design which has been thoughtfully done throughout the ship.

All Restaurants Aboard Ship are Visually Stunning
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Newsletter

Newsletter

Newsletter for the day.

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Newsletter

Newsletter Back

Newsletter inside for the day.

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Spa Services

Spa

The spa has many wonderful services.

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Spa Services

Spa

Check out the weekly specials in the spa. On the departure day, there are special discounts in the spa. On the second day-at-sea, an afternoon special discount was offered for the first 20 passengers to respond to an announcement over the ships public address system.

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Additional Photographs: San Juan 1/5

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Photo Highlights from this Day ... for all photos, please click on the < or > as indicated above. There are as many as five sets of photos for each day of the cruise.

Related Information

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San Juan, St. Thomas, Tortola, Great Stirrup Cay
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