We had an amazing 12 day cruise to the Med. with NCL Spirit!!
We embarked from Barcelona after a great 4 days in Spain. We stayed at the "Hotel Concordia" which is centrally located in the center of Barcelona. It is only 10-15 minute walk from most of the attractions/sites. It's across the street from the metro station. Staff were friendly and very helpful at the hotel. I certainly recommend staying at the "Hotel Concordia". We did hot air balloon ride while in Barcelona- awesome, chance of a lifetime experience!! We also did tour which included Montserrat and sightseeing with "Barcelona Day Tours" and an evening at "Tableau de Carmen". We really enjoyed Barcelona!!
Embarkation was a breeze. We waited @15-20 minutes and walked about the ship. The ship is smaller than most we've cruised on which was nice. There was never a lineup or crowds anywhere. We love Freestyle crusing with NCL!!
The food is ok, nothing extra and not a great variety in the dining rooms, but we refuse to spend extra money to go to the specialty restaurants. This is money we could spend on tours and the food really isn't that bad. The waiters and all the staff are very pleasant and helpful. They appear to enjoy their job and really make the cruise an enjoyable experience. Our cabin was mid-aft on deck 10 and was a great location as it wasn't noisy and very near the elevators. Our room steward Joefre was great!! Always had our room cleaned and he was very pleasant and friendly.
The entertainment was good. We really enjoyed the acrobats, the juggler, the magician and the "Elements" show at the end of the cruise. The entertainment staff work very hard and interact with the passengers. We went to the late show most nights and then we were exhausted after busy days in port!!
We chose this cruise for the amazing port itinerary - France, Florence/Pisa, Rome, and Naples in Italy, Istanbul & Kusadasi in Turkey, Athens and Mykonos in Greece and Venice, Italy. We did private tours which I booked thru cruise critic and had great tours in each port. There were 2 sea days which were greatly needed to get a rest with this intensive port schedule!!
Disembarkation in Venice was smooth. We stayed 3 days in Venice before returning to Canada. We stayed at the Best Western Airvenice Hotel which is 25 minute train ride from Venice. I would suggest staying in Venice area for hotel, possibly close to the port. Venice is a very nice port. You will get lost, several times, and notice that most people are going around lost and looking at a map just as you are!!
NCL is my favorite cruiseline. It's very relaxed, friendly and reasonably priced. Staff are amazingly helpful. I'd certainly recommend NCL and will definitely cruise with them in the future!!