Norwegian Jade Cruise Review by Brett in MN: A Great Mediterranean Sampler!
Overall Member Rating
A Great Mediterranean Sampler!
Destination: Europe - Eastern Mediterranean
After a challenging time getting out of the US due to snow in Atlanta we made it to Barcelona with a few hours to spare. We met a group of 62 in Atlanta that ended up flying to Rome and boarding the ship there. Check in (while crowded) was efficient. They worked with Delta to get one lost bag to meet us in Rome, which it did. Our room (a last minute upgrade from a mini-suite) was wonderful. Deck 10 looking off the aft of the ship on the aft/port corner. The fact that we got to eat breakfast and lunch at Cagney's restaurant was worth the price of the upgrade (which was not that much). Our steward, Ronald, and butler, Totaram, were both very nice and very attentive.
The ratings we have given on the ports are for what we thought of that stop. They are not ratings of the specific tours we took.
We found all of the Jade crew to be very friendly. Our favorite restaurants were Cagney's (breakfast, lunch and dinner), La Bistro (dinner) and the Blue Lagoon (lunch and More dinner). We found the Grand Pacific to be pretty average and the buffet to be fair. We did not do much else on board other than chat with lots of nice people.
As to the virus that previous cruises reported, there was no sign of it that we heard on this cruise. After Athens, restrictions on serving yourself were lifted, though great attention to cleaning was continued. Less
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Cabin review: SF10664 Penthouse with Large Balcony
We were in a Romance Suite (Category AD). It had plenty of room for two. We did not feel cramped at all. We had a queen bed, couch, chair, dining table with four chairs, desk (very small), great (but noisy) coffee maker, small fridge, lots of clothes storage, vanity (small but usable), wireless internet (for a fee), shower/tub combo in the bathroom. Balcony had two loungers, two chair a side table and lots of sun! We looked straight off the back of the ship and were on the end so no unit was to our right as we stood on our balcony. The people above could look down on our deck if that bothers you, but we could not see the balcony below.Read All Penthouse with Large Balcony (SF) Reviews >>
Port and Shore Excursions
We did lose a lot of time in traffic and yet the guide insisted on driving back into Athens to stop for a few minutes near the Hard Rock Cafe and some other shops. Too late and not enough time anyway.
Here are our the cons as we found them. Day one we visited a mosque and the Antiquities museum. One of these should be dropped if not both. There are some very interesting items at the museum and more time there might have been nice, but why put that before going to what people have really signed up to see? After lunch and checking in at the hotel, we headed to the sound and light show. The problem was it was not dark enough when it started to see any of the projections, so for the first half hour it was just a sound show. The good thing was, you got to see the sphinx and the pyramids in the background. But after that (now 7PM after a 6:30AM departure from the ship) we still had a stop at a Papyrus making demo and shop and a dinner cruise. While we thought the Papyrus making stop was interesting and nice shopping, but at the end of a long day was not the best time. The final stop was a dinner cruise on the Nile. Everyone was very tired, the food was very average, the entertainment was the same and there were no views to speak of from the boat. Our group was slowed by low mobility travelers which we likely be someday, but we hope they will group us only with similar passengers so we do not slow down others.
Important Note: Beware the vendors at all of the sites in Cairo. They are very in your face and do not relent easily. They have many tricks that your guide should explain to you how to deal with.
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