We flew Easy Jet to Barcelona and stayed overnight in the city before embarkation. Easy Jet were great and their shuttle service to the city. The next morning we got a taxi to the docks which on the meter had 16 euros on it when we got to the ship, then a button was pressed and it went to 28 euros. Beware! Talk to the hotel before getting in the cab, these rip offs do happen.
Quick and hassle free, we were onboard in less than 30 mins after getting to the docks.
Things to do at first
Your bags are delivered to your room for you and rooms on the day we embarked were not available until 2, we embarked at 12, but there is plenty to see and do. The Garden Cafe is worth a visit for your first onboard meal and as its on deck 15 the views are incredible. Dont worry about the hand sanitiser, you get used to it and end up thinking what a good idea it is!
Outstanding, amazing, brilliant. We had balcony cabin which had everything we needed and then some, there is more than enough storage space that we only partly filled, there is a TV in (with limited English channels)coffee machine (always well stocked and free) mini bar (sadly not free) small sink, massive shower and ample toilet. The glass door on the toilet isnt a problem, the glass is opaque and unless you're a perv and put you're nose to the glass you cant be seen! The bed is huge and sooooooo comfortable, the bed linen was really good quality and its one thing we wanted to bring home! The balcony was plenty big enough and we wouldnt cruise again without one, top tip, dont run out onto the balcony naked in port.......
I would love to speak to the people who have given the ship negative reviews for dining, we couldnt fault it and ate different things every day from the huge variety of resturants. All the food was first class, well presented and if served was done in a professional and polite manner. We failed to get around all the resturants in a week and regretted having to re learn how to cook when we got back.
The staff were all helpful and poliet, there was none of the hard sell we have read about, nothing was too much trouble. I needed a sharps box and one was delivered to the room in minutes and a broken light was fixed as soon as we mentioned it. Our cabin steward was omni-present and clean the cabin to a high standard. When you go out in the evening make sure you put 'turn down the room' on the door, you come back to a great towel animal on the bed and a different one every night.
Brilliant! Circus De-Soleil, this was well worth the extra for the meal, how they managed to do so much in such a small area is incredible, ladies look out for the man in the bath! Blue Man Group, this was incredible, if you do one thing onboard in the evening go and see this! Legends in Concert, this was good, the Whitney Houston was the best. Fat Cats Jazz and Blues Club, we went here several times, Slam Allen is fantastic and there is a great atmosphere. Bliss lounge is worth a visit in the evenings and pool playing when its a bit rough is recommended as it adds a new elemment to the game!
We did three;
Florence on your own. You need a full day here, it is the most beautiful city and some of the buildings are just too pretty to describe. Well worth the coach trip and it is small enough to wander around on your own.
Rome and the Colosseum. This was a guided trip that went to the Trevi Fountain, the Roman Forum, the Coloessum and the Vatican and was really busy, too much for the day, it was a whistle stop tour really. Toilet stops are limited in some 'interesting' toilets, one gripe, shopping. At the end of the tour your are taken to a gift shop that is over priced and there is only 20 mins to buy stuff before the coach leaves and the shop was packed.
Leisurely Sorrento. Not worth the trip, we have 1 hour and 35 mins in the town which is the most beautiful place but with such limited time you hardly have chance to get out of the main square.
Palma. we just went shopping in Palma, it is nice city but was raining so much better to shelter in C&A!
The gripes were have are not many and are small however; when we were out and around the ship there were no rubbish bins and you have to carry your rubbish with you. No music in the cabin and no radio, this would have been nice, the price of bottle water on the ship is really high $5 a bottle (1L) buy this ashore. The casino, neither myself or my fiancee wanted to gamble big but did fancy a quick flutter, we were told we could only gamble if we had dollars or spent $100 on or room card, this was too steep. Shopping was geared to the americans onbard and NCL are missing a trick here, the prices in the shops were expensive by European standards and there were a lot of Europeans onboard.
We did self disembarkation and this was a breeze, you just walk off and in our case got a bus into town for 3 euros each.
We can honestly say we were sad to leave, the ship, the cabin, the food, the entertainment and the staff were all top notch.