First time cruisers - on our honeymoon - focus of review is on board as no excursions were purchased. (Advice and info for couples of a low to mid value spending - our budget was $1000 total excluding the holiday cost)
Varied quality ENTERTAINMENT and ACTIVITIES daily on board for all ages
Scheduled shows and excursions can be booked via the TV in your room - in my opinion this was the quickest and most effective method of planning as you could browse at your leisure and see everything that you had purchased and planned in comfort.
Adults Entertainment that we experienced:
* Blue man group: Highly recommend the blue man group which is amazingly free of charge onboard! combines rhythmical sketches with comedy and pure entertainment.
* Cirque Dreams: ($20 dollars pp - turn up early to get good seats) Circus style acts and entertainment whilst dining (optional seating preference for possible involvement of show and view)
* Grafitti Classics: (was going to book these for our wedding as entertainment for Â£2000 but instead got them for free on the Epic!) comedy and music combined in a string quartet - very comical and entertaining
* Lost Locos Ole (free): Trio of Spanish Slapstick humour (you either love or hate it judging from the audience!) This is 90% in Spanish, despite us not understanding this we still were in fits of giggles throughout the show (book to get a decent seat)
* Luis the classical guitarist (free): A definite favourite for mellowing out with a beverage at the bar (7th floor most nights)- very friendly and truly an amazing guitarist
* The legends (free): Tribute bands/artists entertain in the epic theatre - Madonna (strong vocals that resemble on most tracks performed/does not resemble in looks so much but good entertainment value. Rod Stewart - looks like and sounds pretty close to the real thing. Elvis - the least like the real thing as we know it but still a fair night of entertainment
* Adult Karaoke and Karaoke Battle - fun and no pressure to sing amazingly well
* Bingo - not recommended - over priced and low in prize money and odds IMO ($40 for two people one game for $300)
* So you think you can dance (audience participation) - you can sign up to be involved - you don't have to be able to dance to win the competition - in our case it was the most humourous guy that won! (Well done Ping!)
* Free Tango Lesson - ideal to go with a partner but not essential - no pressure approach to learning tango
* Medina Spa - some decent treatments and facilities but very overpriced. A 50 minute massage was $145 and head massage for ten minutes added on $20 (approx Â£120 in total) this was with a discount!!! $30 a day to use the spa facilities (steamroom/whirlpool/chill out room/swim pool) or half price if booked with a treatment. My advice, if you want a treatment know how much in total you wish to spend or ask for a price list and take it to your room remembering to add on tax to everything.
* Jacuzzi (on deck 15) great late on the evening when there are less children and you can relax - sometimes live music is played whilst you bathe
* The pool was disappointing as it was so small and often full of children/teens
* Ice Bar ($20) - excellent for novelty value but make sure you wear close toes footwear. I could have stayed much longer if i'd been more prepared!
* Photos are taken regularly on the ship and are stored on deck 5 in the library. Some great photos but at a cost. Each photo is $20 (before tax) or for a disc (with 6?) $150 (from memory - there were a couple of other packages available also) - my advice - take your camera most places, take lots of your own pics, have lots of shots professionally too then take one or two professional ones home from the variety taken with any remaining cash at the end of your cruise
* Quality and variety of meals available
* 24 hours pizza delivery for small fee of $5
* Restaurant Staff were efficient, well trained and friendly
* Meals in restaurants were fresh, varied and of a high standard in all restaurants we visited. If you're a meat lover then definitely take a visit to the Moderno (brazillian style restaurant)
* whilst dining, live music was played/sung or performed in some way
* Cannes is by far the most beautiful (if not taking an excursion) Livorno the cheapest to shop as it often has markets and sales in the centre
We would definitely consider cruising again, and also with Norwegian Epic. We would next time however research the ports more and save a little extra cash in order to purchase one or two excursions.