Our Bahamas Cruise on the Norwegian Sky: Freeport, Grand Bahama Island

On the morning we were to enjoy Freeport, Grand Bahama Island, we woke up bright and early and were happy to find that while it was a bit breezy, the weather was warm and sunny. We quickly got dressed and headed down to the buffet to get breakfast, as we wanted something quick. Quick Tip: The main buffet on the Norwegian Sky is the Garden Café, but if you keep walking to the back of it (aft) you’ll come to an outdoor buffet called The Great Outdoors which has much of the same food but is a lot less crowded and you get to enjoy the beautiful outside views while you eat!

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

While I’m not a huge buffet person, I found the breakfast options to be great in the buffets on the Norwegian Sky. There was an omelet station and all sorts of eggs, bacon sausage, french toast, the usual suspects. They also had plenty of fresh fruit, pastries, bagels and lox (with all the fixings) and a nice granola station. Quick tip: bring some zip lock bags of varying sizes. Not only are the big ones helpful for transporting wet clothes while at port, I used sandwich bags to pack snacks to bring into port with me each day from the buffet. Specifically, banana chips and apples but I bet the pastries would be good to bring too! Before we left, we called and requested that someone repair our refrigerator, as we had awoken to discover that it was not cold.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

J’s plate at the Great Outdoors buffet.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

My plate at the Great Outdoors buffet.

I had read mixed reviews about Grand Bahama Island (as well as Nassau) but I’m a firm believer that if you’re looking for issues you’ll find them. We don’t go on vacation to look for issues, we go to have fun and as such we often end of having fun no matter where we are. We had a great time on all the islands, and found many of those poor reviews to be unfounded.

Our Bahamas Cruise on the Norwegian Sky: Freeport, Grand Bahama Island

Not a bad view to take in while enjoying your breakfast!

Since we only needed our ship cards to disembark and we got off pretty early, it was super easy to get into port and took a grand total of five minutes. With the exception of a few stores and restaurants, the port at Freeport is pretty industrial and not an area that we had any interest spending our time. Random fact: there’s actually an oil refinery right there once you get out of the port that is owned by George W. Bush.

But they seem to have transportation for tourists down to a science because right as you get off the ship there’s a taxi stand and van cabs come every few minutes to take you where you’re looking to go. My research indicated that the main place to check out was Port Lucaya which has a beautiful beach as well as a marketplace with many restaurants options. The cab to transport you back and forth is $5 each way, per person (they load the vans up with people). Quick Tip: Make sure you have cash on you when at port as the cabs and some of the establishemnts don’t accept cards (and ATM’s aren’t always readily available). At the time of this post, Bahamas money and the US dollar are worth the same amount and every place that we went to accept our US dollars with no problems.

The cab dropped us off at a casino that is right next to the beach and across the street from the Port Lucaya Marketplace. A couple doors down from the casino is the Grand Lucayan Resort. Quick Tip: for $15 per person you can purchase a day pass that allows you to use their chairs, umbrellas, polls, restrooms etc. Pretty much everything except their towels (we brought the beach towels the the ship provided). If you want to access the beach without the day pass (or the use of the Grand Lucayan’s amenities) you can do so by entering the beach near the police station which is on the other direction leaving the casino- so if your back is facing the casino the police station is to your left and the Grand Lucayan is to your right.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

Port Lucaya Marketplace

We found it a bit confusing getting our day passes to the Grand Lucayan. Quick Tip: you don’t purchase the day passes to the grand Lucayan at their main entrance. You get there from the Casino, you’ll take a right out of the drop off area (if your back is facing the casino) and walk a couple doors down until you see Paradise Jewels to your right. You’ll turn into that area an a bit further in you’ll see a little white hut and that’s where you purchase your day passes and enter the property.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

Paradise Jewels.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

The hut where you can purchase your day passes for the Grand Lucayan Resort.

We purchased the day pass because I really wanted a beach day and being that I’m pregnant, I made full use of those restrooms. Their beach was gorgeous and clean with plenty of chairs available (we were under an umbrella and had our pick of seats since we arrived early- it does fill up). I regret that the ocean was a bit too rough for swimming that day, presumably due to the wind but the sand was the absolute softest, most powdery sand ever. They had a nice pool area with a swim-up bar that J loved. In my opinion it was definitely worth the $15 per person.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

The Grand Lucayan Resort- wouldn’t this be a lovely place to have a wedding?

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

The Grand Lucayan Resort pool area

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

The Grand Lucayan Resort bar area (below the back of it is a swim up bar).

We spend much other morning relaxing on lounge chairs and enjoying the beautiful beach. Once midday rolled around we headed over to the Port Lucaya Marketplace in search of food and to check out some of the shops. Quick Tip: Bring a change of clothes with you , it was so nice to have dry clothes to wear out to lunch. J tied my bikini bottoms to his backpack so they dried while we explored.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

The view from my chair when I first arrived.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

I had to stick my feet in!

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

The gorgeous beach at the Grand Lucayan Resort.

We ultimately settled on Agave Restaurant entirely because they had $1 Margaritas (J was thrilled!). While we were pleasantly surprised by the size of the Margarita, the food left something to be desired. It wasn’t terrible but it wasn’t great either. We shared some salsa and guacamole for me, they had $1 mini tacos that were not too great and I ordered some conch fritters which were also just ok (too much breading, I should have gone with the cracked conch). The service was also pretty slow.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

$1 Margarita at Agave Restaurant.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

Chips and Guac at Agave Restaurant.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

$1 Mini Taco at Agave Restaurant.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

Conch Fritters at Agave Restaurant.

After lunch we checked out a few of the shops and the small straw market. I ended up finding some sweet rompers for my girls and negotiated them down quite a bit. I love negotiating in situations like this and had a good time doing this here and in Nassau. Quick Tips: Never accept a first offer. Talk to them about the product (be friendly and gracious) and ask questions. Make sure you take your time “trying to decide” because every person that the seller sees walk by represents a dollar sign to them and a missed potential sale, which will make them much more eager to close the deal with you. The longer you stay, the more and more they’ll offer you lower prices. After a while tell them (in a nice way at a lower price than all that they’ve offered and what you want to pay) “I’ll take it for x” and then stay quiet. Staying quiet is the key because after you deliver this close, the first person to talk usually loses. It’ll be awkward for a second but you want it to be so that they will talk first. Most of the time at this point they will accept your offer or counter it at which point you’ll go back in forth. Don’t hesitate to walk away because they’ll generally chase you and agree to your price (and if not, you can likely get the same item at the next stand for the price you want). This works like a charm and I found even better deals if you’re purchasing multiple items.

After a little shopping we made our way back to the Grand Lucayan where I took advantage of the free wifi and we enjoyed the gorgeous beach a bit more. Eventually 3:30pm rolled around and we decided to head back catch a cab to the port. I’m glad we left ourselves plenty of time to get back to the port because we had to wait a little while to get a cab (there were plenty of people from various ships there that day and three different groups trying to get cabs, differentiated by the color ticket we were given for our return ride). Quick tip: Give yourself plenty of time to get back to the port and when they say there’s a cab there for your group, you’ve got to be quick or everyone else will jump into it before you.

Upon returning to the ship we were greeted with cool water and cold wash cloths, which were a nice touch! Many of the crew were there to greet us and there was music playing, very celebratory. We found it quick and easy to get back onto the ship using our ship cards (they put your bag through a security check and I’m told they confiscate items like alcohol and other things to return to you upon your final disembarkation).

Once we were back on board we stopped back at our room to drop off our bags and called about the refrigerator once again because it still wasn’t fixed (we weren’t upset and didn’t make a huge deal about it but they had it fixed within the hour after this call). We hung out by the pool for a little while and enjoyed some of the delicious soft serve that’s always available. Quick Tip: they have a soft serve machine next to the bar to the right of the entrance to the Garden Café on the Pool Deck. After relaxing for a bit we headed back to our room to shower and get dressed for our reservation at Cagney’s Steak House.

We had such an excellent meal at Cagney’s! I started out with the Shrimp Cocktail which was awesome and J enjoyed the Chicken Drumette’s. We also split a Wedge Salad which was very good, although we both weren’t fans of Norwegian’s ranch dressing, it had a really garlicky flavor (something I haven’t been loving during this pregnancy). I opted of the 8 oz. Filet Mignon with a baked potato and steamed broccoli while J got a 32oz Porterhouse with mashed potatoes and onion rings. That’s right, 2 lbs. of meat (maybe a little less with the bones but still!).

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

The menu at Cagney’s.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

Shrimp Cocktail at Cagney’s.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

Chicken Drumsticks at Cagney’s.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

The Wedge Salad at Cagney’s.

Our steaks were perfectly cooked (medium rare, though mine might have been a bit under that. I didn’t mind at all!). Everything was delicious, though J didn’t love the onion rings. While the food we ate in the main dining room was good, I found the overall quality of the higher-end restaurants to be much better and just really delicious.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

J’s 32 oz. Porterhouse at Cagney’s.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

My 8 oz. Filet Mignon at Cagney’s.

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

My sides at Cagney’s.

For dessert I ordered the Raspberry Crème Brulee, J went with the Oreo Cheese Cake and they also surprised us with an Apple Crisp. These were all delicious. I am a Crème Brulee fiend and while the flavor was amazing, I would have loved the bruleed layer to be thicker and have more caramelization. But I’ll never complain about Crème Brulee!

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

The servers were all incredibly friendly and gracious, we had a really great dinner date! After dinner, we headed over to the Deal or No Deal game show. Even though I was exhausted, I really wanted to try and get to some of the shows as I had heard they were very good. The game cards are $20 each so we got one and headed in. It was a lot of fun, but we didn’t win anything. After this, we walked around for a bit and ultimately headed back to our room because we were pretty tired from a long and wonderful day (and so very full from an excellent dinner!).

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

Had to get a bump photo (looking all sorts of wonky and wind-blown!

Here's some info and tips about our Bahamas cruise on the Norwegian Sky and Freeport, Grand Bahama Island. We had an amazing time!

We had this little guy waiting for us when we returned to our room- J was a big fan!

You can find the other links from this trip here:

Travel day and our first day in Miami

Embarkation Day

Nassau, New Providence Island

Sea Day and Disembarkation

Newsletter

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16 Comments

  • Reply
    Scott
    November 6, 2015 at 10:26 am Looks like you had a wonderful time! We're shopping for a cruise, will check this line out! Scott recently posted...Not a Game for ONLY One NightMy Profile
    • Reply
      Jessy
      November 6, 2015 at 11:33 am We definitely did and had an excellent experience with Norwegian! I hope you have as great of a time as we did!
  • Reply
    Huub Ricardo
    November 6, 2015 at 11:25 am Cruises are always fun. It's like an all-in resort but on the sea. I've been twice on Carnival. Lots of fun. You should take a cruise that will visit Curacao :) Huub Ricardo recently posted...Friday LookoutsMy Profile
    • Reply
      Jessy
      November 6, 2015 at 11:30 am I agree- we'll definitely be cruising again. I've also heard good things about Carnival! Curacao is definitely on our list :)
      • Reply
        Huub Ricardo
        November 6, 2015 at 11:41 am When the times comes, send me a mail so I can give you the tips and places to go in a short period of time :) Huub Ricardo recently posted...Friday LookoutsMy Profile
        • Reply
          Jessy
          November 6, 2015 at 12:05 pm I definitely will- thank you :)
  • Reply
    Julie Syl Kalungi
    November 6, 2015 at 12:13 pm Sounds like you had a great time on your Bahamas Cruise. You have given me the courage to try a Cruise. I genuinely have been avoiding them coz I once went on a ferry and was terribly sick. I guess tainting cruises with the same brush is silly of me. So Our next Family Vacation will be a cruise. We get so many via our Travel Club at crazy prices like $399 to Antilles for 11 days. And its still available. Thank for the inspiration.
    • Reply
      Jessy
      November 7, 2015 at 5:03 pm We really, really did! I don't generally get motion sickness. I will say the first night was rough seas (all of the crew said while it wasn't as bad as a storm it was pretty bad) and a lot of people were getting sick. J and I did not get sick but I definitely felt a little off from the rocking so I totally understand where you're coming from. I think the Sea Bands helped me and I also had Dramamine just in case (I never needed to take it though). I'm sure your Doctor could recommend more remedies though. I've heard the larger boats have even less rocking and cabins near the center of the ship can help too. I hope you have a great time!
  • Reply
    Alyssa
    November 6, 2015 at 8:07 pm Love the bump photo! You look wonderful! That beach day sounds like heaven. Nothing better than relaxing with a beautiful view! Alyssa recently posted...Pregnancy #2: all the details you never wantedMy Profile
    • Reply
      Jessy
      November 7, 2015 at 5:00 pm Thank you! It was such a wonderful day!
  • Reply
    Jessica
    November 11, 2015 at 9:07 am This looks unbelievably fun and now I want to go on a cruise! Jessica recently posted...Weekend Recap with Gray MonroeMy Profile
    • Reply
      Jessy
      November 11, 2015 at 10:55 am It really was an awesome trip- give it a try some time!
  • Reply
    Aspen Jay
    November 16, 2015 at 12:35 pm Hi Jessy, That water!!!! So pretty! The two times we have been to tropical places there has always been a storm or it is unusually cold-obviously we have bad luck! Thanks for sharing all these tips with everyone at Talented Tuesday. Glad you had a great time! Congrats on the baby bump. :) Cheers, AJ
    • Reply
      Jessy
      November 17, 2015 at 11:43 am Thank you! Yes, the water was spectacular! I'm sorry to hear about the bad weather you dealt with- maybe the 3rd time will be the charm?
  • Reply
    Neil Smith
    January 22, 2017 at 6:33 pm Many thanks, enjoyed the read. We went to these same places a few years ago and I was doing a bit of research to remind myself of the location names before we go back there in Sept. Your blog has described exactly what we did (although I expect we spent much longer at the Marketplace bar)... We cruise several times each year and always like to have a plan, even if we don't always stick to it. We're also taking the Norwegian Sky. Haven't sailed her before but have sailed other Norwegian ships often and are on the Jade, Escape & Getaway also this year. The speciality dining is invariably good and well worth the modest supplement, especially if you buy a package pre-cruise.
    • Reply
      Jessy
      January 22, 2017 at 10:53 pm Thanks for stopping by, Neil! I couldn't agree with you more on the specialty dining- I fear I am now spoiled for all future cruises :) I look forward to sailing Norwegian again- though I've read that the Sky is a bit older and smaller than many of the other ships, we found her to be lovely and had an excellent trip. I hope you have a great time as well!

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