Let me preface by saying that we choose our cruises based on the itinerary offered as well as the price. This was our 6th European cruise. I read all of the reviews of the NCL Sun particularly those from last year's Baltic cruises. So I was well aware of the reviews both good and bad for this ship and cruise line.
The itinerary was outstanding as was the price. Although many mornings when the alarm went off at 6:30am we wondered if this was truly a vacation- the ports merit getting up and getting going.
Boarding in Copenhagen was easy. We arrived the day before and spent the night at the Best Western Hotel City. Upon arrival at the airport we purchased a cOPENhagen card which is well worth the $49.00 price. We took the Metro into the city then used the card for 24 hours to ride the bus, go to the Design Museum and Tivoli Gardens. The following morning we used it to take a canal tour and go to the Round Tower. Then, after gathering up our luggage at the hotel, we walked two blocks to catch the bus to the port. There is both a bus stop and a train station located within walking distance of the port.
Check in was easy as we were there at about 2:45pm.
We booked an inside cabin and were very pleasantly surprised at the size of it. It was "L" shaped with a sofa area and had a full closet, a chest of drawers and shelves, an additional closet full of just shelves as well as another closet with drawers and hanging space.
The ship is a nice size for the type of itinerary. It is clean but dated as stated in previous reviews. The public bathrooms were the smallest I have ever seen on a ship.
The food was nothing special. The sit down lunch and breakfast in the Seven Seas dining room were worth the time but unfortunately were only doable on the sea days. We did eat at Moderno for dinner and did not feel that it was worth the $20 pp up-charge. Again, I had read the previous reviews and was prepared for that.
The bar drinks were typically between $6-$7 BUT actually well worth it. They were very generous with the liquor almost to the point that each drink was a double. Luckily someone in our group had a soda card so it was easy to turn one drink into two!
What I was very disappointed in was the service and the entertainment. Other than in the Sports Bar (our group hangout) and our cabin steward most of the service was perfunctory. This was particularly true in the restaurants. The first night we waited for 20 minutes before they took our order; there was never any dedicated drink service personnel or wine stewards. On a sea day, the server seemed to not want to be bothered with us even though we arrived at 1:30pm-30 minutes before the restaurant closed. It was as if they were going through the motions but there was never any genuine desire to do anything except take your order. We have cruised in a dine anytime environment before (not having a specific server and table) and still had excellent service.
Usually, we make a point of going to the show almost every night. However, we were so disappointed with the on-board troupe's shows that we opted out or even walked out of some of the shows. The exception was the Beatles tribute-performed by an outside group. One of the lounge bands, The Lookouts was basically a karaoke band. The pianists in the piano bars were good and seemed to have a dedicated crowd listening to them. The Dazzles band (I believe they were called the "Flyers" was quite good and really appealed to the age of the crowd on board playing lots of classic rock and dance music.
Again, we are experienced cruisers and we went into this cruise with eyes open based on previous reviews. It was the itinerary and timing that motivated us. But that being said, when you are an experienced cruiser you do have some expectations and I was hoping to be pleasantly surprised. Take the itinerary out of the equation and the NCL Sun was just average.