This review hopefully will give information for those that are about to sail on the NCL Sun. This was the 7 day eastern cruise on Nov 6, 2010.
This was our first cruise on NCL, but our 22nd overall. We had been warned on other cruises that NCL did not have the best record, but seeing that the Sun was sailing out of Port Canaveral and the recent reviews were not so bad and that the price was attractive, we decided to give it a try.
We arrived at the port at about noon; waited several minutes outside to go through security screening; waited about 10-15 minutes in the line for registration and finally we boarded about 12:35. The photo for your identification is taken at the registration desk and not as you enter the ship.
This is the first ship that we have been on where you can have a sit down lunch in the main dining room and do not have go to the 11th deck for free-for-all buffet. Earlier reviews complained about the garden cafe being jammed. So we ate in the 7 seas (aft deck 5), had a peaceful lunch and about 2 PM we went to our room that was ready.
The boat drill is at 3:30 - don't go until the alarm sounds at 3:30. You will have to wait as it is for about 15 minutes. Do not take you life jacket.
Cabin - We we were on deck 8 mid ship in an inside cabin meant for up to 5 people. It was as wide as it was deep. We had double the storage that we needed. The cabin stewards work as a pair and they never introduced themselves but did an excellent job. The room was very quiet and you could not even hear the toilets of the other rooms flushing. There is only one 110 volt and two 220 volt outlets at the desk. Bathroom - there is a hair dryer over the toilet, but it is weak and probably will take twice as long to dry your hair. The bathroom is not equipped with much. There is liquid soap at the sink; liquid shampoo and shower gel in the shower - no bar soap!!!
Entertainment - the main theater is aft - not forward and is right over the 7 seas restaurant. The shows are not the best. The production shows were 5 girls singing on Tuesday and the 12 member cast for "encore" which was on Thursday night, which was good. Other nights were single performers. No problem getting a seat - we came at the starting time. Shows are at 7:30 and 9:30.
Dining - It is freestyle. We did not go to the speciality dining areas as the two main dining rooms were fine. There were 6 in our group and we had no waiting when we went at 5:45 and 6:30. The 7 seas and 4 seasons serve the same menu. We ate aft in the 7 seas about 6:30 for the first two nights, but we were right over the propellers and we had more vibration and noise, so for the remaining nights we ate in the 4 seasons (mid ship)at 5:45 so we could go to the shows. The food was quite good we thought. Lobster tails, prime rib, etc. The staff was very pleasant. 4 seasons opens at 5:30; 7 seas opens at 6 PM. I brought a sport coat and slacks, but I never used the coat. I did not see anyone with a tux and about 15% of the guys wore a coat of some type.
Getting around - like many ships, the galley is between the two dining rooms, so you cannot cross deck 5. On deck 6 you have to walk through the night club. The rear has 4 elevators that serve the garden cafe, the theater, and the 7 seas restaurant - so it can be a little crowded around show time. Forward are 8 elevators. There are two on each side of the atrium and those two that are aft of the atrium get the most use. I used the larger ones that are forward as there is usually no wait. At the ports of call the 4 elevators forward are the ones used as you exit on deck 3.
Ports of call - Nassau 5 ships in town - very crowded. St Thomas - very crowded and we did not arrive until 12:30, there a delay, so no one left until 1 PM which was 2 PM local time. So the stairwells were jammed for everyone trying to get off. There was only about 3 hours of day light left. It was drizzling, so we did only a little shopping at the Havensight pier. St Martin - we docked at the new pier right next to the Oasis of the Seas which made us look like a raft. There were many people in port with 4 ships. We did not take it, but the $20 3 hour tour of the whole island is still available at the taxi stand. Remember when you book a ship's tour, it goes rain or shine and is cancelled only due to safety.
Booze purchase - St Thomas was 10% less that the ship's prices and St Marteen downtown was 20% less. You are allowed 5 liters per person as long as 1 bottle was a product of St Thomas. Going through customs, the agent asked me how many bottles I had, I said 5, he said have a good day. You have to retrieve your bottles on Friday as they do not deliver them.
Saturday - You can stay in your room until 9 AM. On Thursday you go to the lobby to get the tags for your suitcases - you choose what time that you want to get off. We chose the earliest for suitcases to be picked up at the terminal which was lime - green. It really wound up being about the last to get off the ship as there was a jam at the meeting point in the terminal. It was very poorly organized.
Overall, if you are in to a relaxed cruise, this may be it it. I was somewhat bored as we had been to the stops and also due to very few activities. The rough seas and so so weather did not help.