52 Norwegian Epic Cruise Reviews for Singles Cruises to Europe - Western Mediterranean from Barcelona

NORWEGIAN EPIC REVIEW Some background on me to begin. I’m a 32 year old male bachelor. Norwegian Epic was my 17th cruise overall, and the 2nd that I’ve taken with NCL. Others include 9 with Celebrity, 5 with MSC, and 1 with ... Read More
NORWEGIAN EPIC REVIEW Some background on me to begin. I’m a 32 year old male bachelor. Norwegian Epic was my 17th cruise overall, and the 2nd that I’ve taken with NCL. Others include 9 with Celebrity, 5 with MSC, and 1 with Carnival. Like many of my cruises, I sailed with my 76 yr old father who has some health issues. —And although, it’s a cruise to spend some father/son time together as we live in different states, he usually goes to bed quite early, and I enjoy the night life well into the wee hours of the morning… So, inevitably It ends up becoming a “singles” cruise for me. Before I describe the ship and everything else about this amazing cruise, I think it’s important to point out a Difference with Norwegian as I see them.... First off, this is not going to be a doom and gloom review... As I do view this cruise, and ship very favorably.... But I’ll start out with a fundamental disagreement that I have overall with NCL. As Compared to the other lines that I’ve sailed with....(Twice now with NCL), they are the Kings and Queens of overly casual. Very few people dress up. I guess that I’m a rare traditionalist millennial when it comes to this opinion....I wear a sport coat often to work, and that’s in south Louisiana where it’s needless to say, quite warm for most of the year. I also, as a bachelor enjoy when women take the time dress up. Cruising is the last romantic way to vacation. There’s something about going to sleep at 2AM with a bottle in your hand in the middle of a beautiful ocean and awaking in an exotic location somewhere in the Caribbean or Mediterranean. Buuuuttt, in a nutshell, I guess that I’m not the world’s biggest fan of “Freestyle Cruising”. —It’s not so much the dress attire that turns me off, it’s the fact that very little if anything is structured at all. For instance, virtually every other cruise line particularly my 2 favorites (Celebrity and MSC) have two main entrainment shows per night. —You organize your dinners(whether it’s a specialty restaurant, or one of the main dinning rooms around whichever show that you choose to attend.) —It’s a real simplistic way to cruise. There’s no overthinking it...It comes a little more natural. Freestyle cruising is more like trying to decide most of your shows, dinners, and evening hour activities on the first day of the cruise or even pre-cruise. Nothing is actually “freestyle” about it... You’re forced to decide your show times, or speciality restaurant times or even dinning room times in some cases by the end of the first evening unless you want your dinner at 11pm. I get what Norwegian is trying to do with freestyle cruising. —I understand that they want to give passengers options...And I truly see why they’ve had so much success doing this... **But I also see why other lines have been reluctant to head in their direction. And I get it now. ON TO THE POSITIVES: The EPIC might be the perfect cruise ship for the Mediterranean. It’s not quite Norwegian’s best or biggest ship. As I thought that the ESCAPE(which I sailed in 2017 was nicer and much more updated and had better social gathering points and creature comforts and cabins). But it has all of the things that modern cruisers want(including me). Plus your itinerary, and getting to see some of the cradles’ of civilization(especially those in Europe) is something to greatly credit. Although the ship holds over 4000 passengers, you rarely ever feel crowded. That’s a small advantage to a ship that was built 10 years ago, as opposed to some of the newer ships that are only a few years old that I’ve taken recently. The ship was also refitted 5 years ago... So you hardly notice any wear and tear at all. The ship also flows very well. Unlike some of the newest ships, there’s very few instances to where you can’t walk from one end of a deck to the other. —It really helps with getting around. EMBARKATION: A+ If you’re reading this about to take a Mediterranean cruise out of Barcelona or Civitavecchia, do yourself a favor and opt-in on the transfer from the airport to the cruise port. —You can do this directly on the NCL website. Well worth the $50(round trip) per person. So $100 total for two people. We were sailing out of Barcelona and took the transfer charter bus from the Barcelona Airport to the cruise port(which took around 20-25 mins or so with traffic). —It’s only about 10 miles apart. It really is the easiest route to go. The cruise port check-in was a breeze. Maybe 20-25 mins from entering the port to stepping on the ship. Barcelona only has 3 cruise ships on a Sunday, so it doesn’t seem to back up with people quite as much as Miami, or Lauderdale. Also, we arrived pretty early at the port as our flight was a red-eye into Barcelona. (We were on one of the first transfer buses from the airport to cruise port)....And credit to Norwegian for allowing you into your stateroom by noon. It was great to set down cary-on bags and get a view of the stateroom before exploring the ship. THE SHIP ITSELF OVERALL: A- I found the ship pretty easily navigable. My advice would be to take the time to really explore the ship on the first day, and you should be pretty good to go by day two. I tend to explore any ship that I sail as much as I can on the first day and make it a point to have a drink at every bar. —That usually gets you around pretty well ;) My advice, if you’re sailing the Mediterranean, and flying in that day from the U.S., make sure to do a little exploring around the ship before you pass out for your cat nap before the vacation begins. STARTING FROM THE TOP The Pool Deck(s): A+ The Pool Deck is spacious, and really has A TON of deck chairs that they’ve found every nook and cranny to put in. Like most cruises, deck chairs fill up quickly with towel clips, bags, and magazines holding chairs for sometimes hours before they’re actually occupied. But, I legitimately found very little overcrowding on any of the pool decks(including the actual pool deck 15). There was always available lounge chairs at any time of day(including sea days). Like the majority of newer NCL ships, slides and kiddo pool areas take up a large portion of the deck, but they really weren’t a nuisance(even if you’re looking for less kids and more relaxation).... If somehow the slides or kid areas near the main pool do bother you, EPIC smartly made “Spice H20” which is a smaller pool deck towards the back of the ship also on deck 15. —It’s an adult only pool. But I seriously found plenty of relaxing areas in the main pool area. Spice H2O also has several nighttime parties throughout the cruise. There’s also a Pool deck up high(even if you’re not a Haven passenger) on Deck 18. You access this via the main pool deck right near the outdoor part of the Buffett. Not much on 18 except deck chairs. The Bars/Lounges/Clubs: A- EPIC really does have a solid variety of bars to satisfy most tastes. I really enjoyed “Shakers Martini Bar” as the best overall bar itself. VERY VERY good drinks. It’s also near several of the speciality restaurants on Deck 7, and is right above the casino and near the theater. “Shakers” also has several pianists who play sing along music in a subtle non-annoying way. My other favorite drinking spot on the ship was “Bliss Ultra Lounge”. It typically starts off in the evening as a karaoke bar, and transcends later in the night to a full night club. Trust me, if you’re young and single, this is most likely where you’ll find your cruise romance lol. There were other honorable mention bars as well. The main pool deck bar(name escapes me as I write) is one of the largest pool deck bars at sea. Although it’s probably one of the most crowded on the ship, again you rarely have to wait more than a min or two before your drink order is taken. Also, if you’re a big craft beer person, O’Sheeans Irish Pub is very popular. O’Sheeans also has bar food like wings, cheese sticks ETC... Casino, Shops, and General Areas B+  As it’s well published, NCL EPIC has one of, if not THE largest casinos at sea. It seems to go on over half of the entire Deck 6. Stretching from Manhattan Main Dinning Restaurant(rear of the ship) all the way to O’Sheeans Irish Pub(which is mid-to-forward of the ship) If you like the tables, slots, or simply watching the action like me, It’s truly a massive entertainment center of the ship. If you’re a player, this is YOUR SHIP. SHOPS: Some of you might not care much about the shopping of the ship considering the destinations within your itinerary. I found the shops decent. (Not great/not bad)… The best store in terms of variety on the ship is the cosmetics and fragrance store(don’t remember the name). The watch store also has a pretty good variety. Other than that, nothing really comes to mind. Seems to have fewer shops and duty free alcohol stores or much smaller than ships equal of Epic’s size. —Not a big deal as like me, I’m sure very few of you choose a ship for the shopping. GENERAL AREAS: The general areas on Epic are pretty good minus one glaring exception…The vast majority of newer ships have main promenades(which serve as the central gathering points of the interior of the ship). —You’ll typically have bars, a dance floor, restaurants nearby, and a view of either 3 or 4 decks at one time. --Those of you who like Celebrity know that that area of the boat is near the martini bar on Solstice Class ships, and the Edge. Those who like MSC know that that area is around the Swarovski Staircases. NCL EPIC doesn’t seem to know where to send people in the interior, and it almost spreads people out too thin, limiting the action and interaction between passengers. Again, seeming to cater to the “Freestyle” cruising idea. In other words, “you choose wherever you wanna go”....Even Norwegian’s newer ships like the ESCAPE do a better job having a true main promenade. Again, some of you might roll your eyes at that, or think that I’m knit-picking on that one. But, if you cruise often like me, and aren’t necessarily entirely loyal to one line, you might get what I’m trying to say. The interior of the ship is very very nice though with lot’s of variety. No complaints at all about the condition of the ship, or the décor. All very nice! –I’m sure that this was improved during the refitting in 2014-2015. THE FAMED AND CONTROVERSIAL EPIC STATEROOM LAYOUT DEBATE: B+ Like pretty much all cruise ship cabins, it was small and served it’s purpose. Like I said earlier, I am a 32 year old bachelor... and although I always get a balcony room on any ship that I sail on, I can’t tell you that I ever spend much time in my state room other than to sleep and get dressed. But, for what it’s worth, the state room was very nice, and modern. You are on a cruise ship to have a good time, and be around other people, and get some sun. —You can’t do any of those things by staying in your room. One huge plus is the closet/drawer space. —Amazing for your sized stateroom. On to the big debate about the bathroom lol... I’m sure that most of you have read the controversy over the bathroom set up. There is no doubt that many others have nailed the fact that it is definitely unconventional....The toilet is on one side of the entrance of the stateroom with a sliding fogged glass door for privacy. And the shower is virtually a twin copy of that on the other side. Then, the sink is just outside of the shower openly in the stateroom. —I really think people overly pan this situation unfairly. —It’s really not that bad. One big argument to play the devils advocate for those hatters of this situation is that if you’re a married couple, one spouse can shower while the other is using the sink to get ready without being on top of each other like you’d be in a regular cruise bathroom. Also throw a kid into the room with that couple, and it’s logical and realistic that a wife can be doing her makeup at the sink, the husband is showering, and the kid can still use the bathroom all at the same time without stepping on each other. What other conventional stateroom can you do that in??? It’s really NOT THAT BAD. Buuuuutttt, strange layout nonetheless. THE PASSENGERS AND CREW: A+ This cruise had a very fun crowd! I was absolutely shocked at how many millennials and Gen-“X”ers were on this cruise considering the expense for American’s to take a Mediterranean cruise, and the added costs associated with traveling to get to Europe in the first place. But, there were many young professionals on the ship. Norwegian seems to do a great job at attracting younger passengers without stooping to the spring break Carnival college kid crowd. Although there were lots of younger people on the ship, NOT ONE AGE GROUP seemed to dominate the masses. One of the most balanced cruise crowds that I’ve ever seen. I was shocked at how balanced the crowd was. Also, tons of single millennials on the ship to hang out/flirt with. I’m not saying that I was necessarily looking for a “target rich” environment… But It certainly makes things more interesting if you catch my drift haha. ***Although, I have no data to back up my numbers…. I would guess that the age of passengers on the ship was: 30% Gen X, 25 % Millennials, 20% Baby Boomers, 15% Seniors, 10% Gen Z/Children Nationalities on board were: 45% of passengers were American, 40% European, 10% Latin-American, 5% from other parts of the world. Crew: I cannot say enough great things about the EPIC staff! These people, no matter whether they’re a stateroom attendant, buffet bus person, or an officer were simply perfect. They’ve mastered the art of service. I would give you specific examples, but we’d be here all day. One thing that I’ll point out was the bartenders were great! All were friendly, fast, and after a few days would remember your drink. —Truly remarkable for thousands of people circulating in and out week after week. SPECIALITY RESTAURANTS, MAIN DINING ROOMS, AND BUFFET My father and I ate at 5 of the 7 speciality restaurants on board. This isn’t super typical of everyone who adds speciality dinning to their cruise, as most people will eat at between 2 or 3 restaurants. In no particular order, opinions/grades on the 5 that we ate at: * Le Bistro (French) B+ The food at Le Bistro was pretty good. Not great. I heard several others sitting around us that they were really enjoying the cuisine but there’s a huge caveat for me with the fact that I’m from Louisiana and live in New Orleans. Please understand that I have access to some of the best French food available in the US on a daily basis. * La Cucina (Italian) A+ The food at La Cucina was excellent! Great starter salads, beautiful charcuterie board/antipasto and ton’s of Italian favorites. I had the veal and it was excellent! * Shanghai's Chinese Restaurant B- The meal was decent. But Not nearly the best Chinese food that I’ve had at sea. Much better Chinese on Celebrity Equinox....Called “Silk Harvest”. Their biggest problem is that they are missing some of the American favorites of Chinese. No General Tso Chicken and many other thing’s that Americans would expect from a Chinese restaurant. * Cagney’s Steakhouse D+ Unfortunately one of the worst meals that I’ve ever had at sea. I ordered my ribeye “medium”, and it came out still mooing. Also, the ribeye was 50% fat. I love ribeyes and cook steak often at home, and understand that that cut of meat will have extra marbling, but this was absurd. My father ordered his steak medium-well, and it came like a piece of leather. We both ended up just eating our salads and sides(which were fair at best), and cast aside the steaks. —The staff tried to make it right though. (Plain and simple, Cagney’s just sucks. Tried it on the NCL Escape as well, and thought the exact same thing). —You’d think a steakhouse would be one of the easiest to operate. * Teppanyaki (Japanese hibachi) A+ This was the second best meal that we had behind La Cucina. The food was excellent, as was the enjoyment of the hibachi experience. And the hibachi chef’s were entertaining and hilarious. The food was excellent. Great variety of Steak, chicken, shrimp, muscles, veggies, and rice. ***As you can see from above, 4 of the 5 were good, with 2 being great. Very disappointed in Cagneys on both the Escape and the Epic. MAIN DINNING ROOMS: A+ There are two main dinning rooms on EPIC. “Manhattan” and “Taste”. Manhattan is a little dressier with a little bit more formal setting. Whereas Taste is a little more laid back with more of a traditional menu. We only ate at Manhattan once, and both really liked it. —Very similar menus and atmosphere to other comparable ships. BUFFET: A+ Good choices for breakfast and lots of variety. Pretty typical for a mega ship buffet, but added variety. They seem to a little better job on breakfast than other lines (particularly with omelette stations)... They have omelette stations and other quick to order stations all over to try and get it to you fast. Although we only ate lunch once at the buffet, again there was a good variety of American favorites and various salad bars, and other ethnic cuisine. One thing that we loved was the burger/grilled items outside near the pool deck. Easy to grab lunch and to get back to your deck chair. ENTERTAINMENT: B+ If you remember my opening, you know that I don’t particularly care for “freestyle cruising” because of having to schedule everything so early... Nothing is more prevalent of that than the main theater shows on EPIC. THE SHOWS: “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert" and "Burn the Floor," are the Two main headliner shows in the theater. Both were entertaining and high energy. Really liked “Burn The Floor”. Drag isn’t necessarily my thing, but still thought Priscilla was hilarious. Unlike most cruise lines, I do give NCL a lot of credit for their (what I call) “sub-shows”. —Which are smaller venues with comedians, or other shows within smaller venues around the ship. The best show on the ship hands down was called “Cirque Dreams Epicurean” Held in the “Spiegel Tent”. —Which a smaller dinner theater near the main theater. Given the small theater and the rapid changing of the various stages, you feel like the actors and acrobats are right on top of you! It’s interactive as well! There is a charge for this show as they serve dinner as well. It was about the price of a specialty restaurant. Book early! The shows fill up rapidly and were sold out for most of the cruise. Another “sub-show” was “Howl At The Moon” located in Headliners Comedy Club —Free and open to anyone, three musicians play various instruments and take requests from the audience for hours... They were AWESOME! Plus, you can come and go as you please. They typically play for about 4 hours. 8-11PM is clean in case kids are there. After 11PM is uncensored(which is more enjoyable) Speaking of Comedy....One MASSIVE negative which robbed my ENTERTAINMENT GRADE OF BEING AN “A” was no comedy show at all! —Not Even in the comedy club! —I’m not sure if this was just for this cruise, or whether NCL plans on ceasing comedy shows or what the deal was??? MISCELLANEOUS POSITIVES: -I found a lot less nickel & diming on EPIC. -One of the biggest varieties of speciality dinning, along with free speciality dinning options. -The ship really does well with excursions which is important when you’re in Europe given the language differences. -NCL Might have the best premium drink package on earth! Way less expensive than Celebrity and MSC, and you can order virtually anything. They also don’t “drink count” as I call it. In other words, if I ordered two drinks at a time, I didn’t need two cruise cards. They just did it(Believe me my friends, that is rare) MISCELLANEOUS NEGATIVES: -The WiFi was the worst I’ve ever had at sea. Mind you that both my father and I bought the premium unlimited packages on that. Had to constantly re-boot and try for sometimes 7 to 8 times to just to sign on. I get it, I was on vacation and some of you will say that I should’ve unplugged. But, I’m in management with a media company and have to check my email once a day during weekdays for emergencies even when on vacation. -No free bottled water. —Seriously. With a premium drink package, you can order all the Patron, Grey Goose, or Johnny Walker Blue Label you want, BUT NOT bottled water unless you want to pay out of pocket. Otherwise, you get a glass of tap water. Never seen that on 17 cruises except this. IN CLOSING: This cruise was amazing because of the three main factors. 1.) The itinerary, 2.) the people on the ship 3.) the crew. Yes, the ship is nice. But you’d be dazzled by some of the newer ships that other lines have come out with recently. I give the overall grade of B+ to the entire cruise. Inconsistencies in the food, the WiFi, freestyle cruising and a few lesser things narrowly cost EPIC an “A”. —Still a great cruise. Cheers to you on your next voyage! -Matthew from New Orleans, Louisiana Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Have been sailing on the EPIC twice a year for a number of years, its a comfortable ship and suits me. I travel as a solo, love the studios and enjoy the get together in the solo bar at 5.00. It is as they say you can do what you want ... Read More
Have been sailing on the EPIC twice a year for a number of years, its a comfortable ship and suits me. I travel as a solo, love the studios and enjoy the get together in the solo bar at 5.00. It is as they say you can do what you want including nothing! I don't think I will be doing this anymore as I have now covered every excursion over the years. In my last review around the Caribbean from Orlando I complained about the disembarking, a mess and frankly quite dangerous but this time leaving at Barcelona was a dream and how it used to be. I wonder what causes the difference between disembarking in the USA and Europe? The ship is beginning to look tired but is probably due for a " remodel" . I would recommend this ship for its choices and freedom. I have enjoyed all my cruises except one on this ship, March this year as it was filled with Spring breakers so was noisy and crowded and I personally just couldn't get anywhere near the bars. I would therefore, recommend avoiding that time. Loved the shows and the food. Can't believe I was charged nearly $5 for a little bottle of water, about a $ off the ship, I was heading straight for HOHO bus in Palma and didn't want to miss the bus. One thing I did notice however, was that people were filling up their bottles at all the water machines on the ship, despite the notice, nobody was saying anything or stopping them. Plus nobody was following the dress code in the restaurants any more and nothing was said to them, which has changed since I first sailed on the ship. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
I choosen this Norwegian Epic becuse od western Med.Regions, Its provides the most terrible foods in the crusie ship history. I stronnglrg not recommended to anyone , single ,family and senoirs . JUST NO . By the way no good drinkings ... Read More
I choosen this Norwegian Epic becuse od western Med.Regions, Its provides the most terrible foods in the crusie ship history. I stronnglrg not recommended to anyone , single ,family and senoirs . JUST NO . By the way no good drinkings waters supply. Totaly terrible services the dinnig room foods were not foods just junkies . Terrible and horrible services . THe ship were gay desert queen just not foe family . Lousy shows its needs to be up graded or changes . the vendors macines were not working for the whole trips no one care about that .Foods services on the ship were just not not enough to eat . JUst terrible and horrible . I would not recommended anyoe to go on board for just a horrible ship. . By the wat in board the ship announced FREE bout it was not everythings needs to pay .The entrtainments just horrible noy na good shows to terrible shows for everyonre. Noe I found a good way to expressed myslf to everyone who like Western Med regions , Please don't go to Norweegian Epic that all.. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Overall this was a fantastic trip. All of the ports were awesome with embarkation and disembarkation really smooth with the exception of Naples. Getting back onboard was a chore. The ship itself was awesome. I’ve cruised in the past ... Read More
Overall this was a fantastic trip. All of the ports were awesome with embarkation and disembarkation really smooth with the exception of Naples. Getting back onboard was a chore. The ship itself was awesome. I’ve cruised in the past and I often found myself with nothing to do, or entertainment that wasn’t entirely entertaining. Not the case with the Epic. The shows were fantastic and the dining options were endless. I traveled with a large group and there were plenty of options for us to get together as a group for dinner or a show. The only thing that wasn’t 100% was the quality of the rooms. The ship is a little bit older and the wear and tear was pretty apparent in some places. There were a few spots throughout where it looked like a quick fix was in place, but it was nothing that would have turned me away from sailing on the Epic, or any Norwegian ship in the future. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise because of the great itinerary, going to places we have never been and wanted to visit. This cruise offered two locations for embarkation, and we chose Rome. There were several places that we wanted to visit in Rome ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the great itinerary, going to places we have never been and wanted to visit. This cruise offered two locations for embarkation, and we chose Rome. There were several places that we wanted to visit in Rome and this gave us the opportunity to arrive in Rome a few days early and spend some additional time there. The City of Rome is actually quite a drive from the cruise port so using this as one of our ports would not have allowed enough time to see everything that we wanted to. The cruise port here in Civitavecchia had just opened so everything was brand new and the process went very smoothly. There also were not as many people embarking here as in Barcelona. so we were able to avoid the crowds. The ship was a bit different than others that we have been on. but there were no major issues. The toilet was in it's own little closet, as was the shower which was on the other side of the door of the cabin. The sink was in the room. The bed was comfortable for my husband and myself, but could be a problem for a tall person. There was plenty of storage in the cabin but very little walking room. One thing that we missed was a walking deck that went around the outside of the ship.There was a small "track" that went up and down one side of the ship on one deck. The upper deck and a few small pools, hot tubs, waterslide and climbing wall. The Garden Cafe Buffet was our choice for breakfast each morning and the food was excellent. We had a promotion for 3 nights of dining in the specialty restaurants and the food options offered were excellent. The regular dining room did not seem to offer very interesting options. The entertainment on the ship was very good, though several required reservations. This was a very enjoyable trip and I would highly recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I took the 7 day Western Mediterranean from Barcelona, and after spending 2 days in Barcelona I didn’t want to leave! However as soon as I got on the ship I was in total awe! Yes it’s massive but give that 2 days and you’ll navigate ... Read More
I took the 7 day Western Mediterranean from Barcelona, and after spending 2 days in Barcelona I didn’t want to leave! However as soon as I got on the ship I was in total awe! Yes it’s massive but give that 2 days and you’ll navigate just fine! As a solo traveller I was in the studio cabins and I was super happy with my room and the solo lounge. Our coordinator Ruby did a great job of bringing us together and although I didn’t see the entire group every night I had a base of friends I could spend my time with each night. My only recommendation is that dinner was too early at 6pm after a long day of excursion where I would literally arrive at 5:30. The excursions were amazing and well worth the price, I had some great tour guides which made the experience for me. The ship was beautiful and my favourite locations were Maltings Bar, older crowd and great drinks by Joseph! Shakers had amazing martinis and O’Sheehans was good for a late night snack or breakfast on the way to my excursion. In terms of food, I would say it was good not great and my favourite dinner location was The Manhattan Room and Cagney’s was great for a steak if you have the specialty restaurant package or just want to splurge was well worth it! Overall I had an amazing experience, met some great people and will definitely cruise again! Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I chose this cruise due to being able to board in Barcelona ( half an hour flight) and the fact that the ship has studio cabins. Embarkation was extremely well organised and I was on board by midday, everyone was welcoming and ... Read More
I chose this cruise due to being able to board in Barcelona ( half an hour flight) and the fact that the ship has studio cabins. Embarkation was extremely well organised and I was on board by midday, everyone was welcoming and friendly. I was astonished by the size of the ship! I headed straight for some lunch at O'Sheehans the off to the pool deck for a Mojito. By about 1.30 it was announced that the staterooms were ready, so went off in search of my studio on deck 11. I found it quite easily and found it to be perfect for my needs, it was well presented apart from the carpet not having been vacuumed and previous occupants shoes under the bed! No big deal, I was just so excited to be on board! The studio area is key card accessed and there is a private lounge which I didn't really use but ideal for single travellers to meet up. This was a week to find out whether or not I would enjoy a cruise so didn't take any shore excursions other than Naples and Cannes which I did on my own. I just loved being on the ship! I found the food to be excellent, I ate mainly in the Garden Cafe, there was loads of choice and themed nights at dinner, I always enjoyed breakfast at the Great Outdoors area, lovely friendly staff and fab omelettes cooked to order. I enjoyed a meal at Shanghai's, didn't try Taste or Manhattan, next time! I really enjoyed the bars, I met lots of lovely people from all over the world, I didn't feel the need to do any of the activities organised for solo travellers as I am happy meeting people on my own. Entertainment was great, always something going on and some thing for everyone, again I always met new friends and had a great time! Priscilla and Burn the Floor were fantastic! As a solo traveller I had an amazing time and met some wonderful people, often dining with new found friends, a fantastic week .. in fact I loved it so much that I have already booked the same ship, same cabin for the Transatlantic cruise to Florida in November 2018! Only tiny niggles were the service at Waves pool bar. . a long wait.. and my cabin nevery did get vacuumed. But I had an amazing week! Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
Hi - this was my first ever cruise and I did not know what to expect - if the chaotic boarding at Barcelona was anything to go by I was concerned. However the cruise was absolutely excellent yes it was busy / full however the H2O area ... Read More
Hi - this was my first ever cruise and I did not know what to expect - if the chaotic boarding at Barcelona was anything to go by I was concerned. However the cruise was absolutely excellent yes it was busy / full however the H2O area at the back of the ship was mostly child free, the food and the service was excellent along with the entertainment - the solo team especially enjoyed the Howl at the Moon Piano bar. Contrary to the previous review I never realized that there was up and down elevators - we tended to use the stairs for a bit of exercise and when we did use the elevators never seemed to have a problem with people going up one floor in order to come back down! During the port days the vessel became very empty and you could eat anywhere, likewise in the evening with a group of 13 people we has no problems in finding a restaurant to accommodate us. My only comment was that the music in the H20 and Bliss was nearly all Spanish. I booked the use of the thermal suite which allowed me to get away from the main ship and relax in the afternoon - this was well worth the £90 I payed. The Studio lounge was excellent and the Studio bedroom was also good however I mad the mistake of having an inter-connecting door - which meant I could here the person next door having a shower at 3am!! The main pool area was busy however it is a child friendly ship - if you wanted to move out of the hustle and bustle of the main pool area there was loads of available space and only once did I think "boy this is busy". The drinks in the deck bars were pre-made and this was mainly the cocktails of the day and a few other std drinks apart from that everything I drank was fresh (and I drank a lot). Bar service could be a bit slow however the staff were very good at spotting "Que" jumpers and were very chatty. The disembarkation in Barcelona was a disappointment - we were kicked off at 6am having been told on the Friday - this could have waited until the Saturday - our holiday was not over!!!! - I was in the airport at 7 for a flight at 12:30!! I was also disappointed at the way some people treated the staff - any excuse to moan then they did but the crew worked very hard - I am thinking of going on this boat again when she goes to the Caribbean. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
This was my first cruise with Norwegian.I chose NCL cause this time i was travelling solo and NCL seemed to be the best choice.Also i like the freestyle concept of NCL,so i wanted to try them out. Embarkation wasn`t good.It took one ... Read More
This was my first cruise with Norwegian.I chose NCL cause this time i was travelling solo and NCL seemed to be the best choice.Also i like the freestyle concept of NCL,so i wanted to try them out. Embarkation wasn`t good.It took one hour to get on board ! At the beginning approx. 15 agents were available for checking in and getting my ship card.But suddenly several agents just went away and never came back.SO only 5 Agents were now serving the people and it took very long. The ship itself was also in very good condition.For me personally the design is a little bit confusing.It is not that easy to get along right away.Fortunately there are enough signs to show the way. The food overall was good.The buffet is a little bit more than average,nothing special.Quantity wasn`t that good, quality was Ok.The food in both the main dining restaurants was always very good.CHoice was good and qualtity always very good. The food in O`sheehans was Ok.Burger was average,fries ware bad,but the desert was very good. I was totally surpised about the number of available deck chairs even on sea day.In the sun there were always dozens of available chairs and even in the shade there were some available,although the ship was fully booked. The drinks in the bars were - for me - all a bit weak and quite small for the money. The entertainment was the best i`ve ever seen on any cruise ship ! Burn the floor is simply amazing ! But also the cavern club and Howl at the moon are really good.There is so much choice of excellent live music on board.... The only excoursion i booked via NCL was in Cannes.(Nizza and Eze)It was quite good,but too expensive.I generally think that the charges for NCL-excoursions are too high. The service was almost always good.Never had to wait too long to be asked for a drink in any bar or club or other venue.Especially the solo travellers host on my cruise(Crystle) was amazing ! I really enjoyed my cruise and i will definitely book with Norwegian again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Went with a single's group and had a great time on the Epic. I've been on the sister ship, the Getaway, and liked the Epic much better. The staff/waiters/bartenders were much friendlier, the bars were cooler and the atmosphere ... Read More
Went with a single's group and had a great time on the Epic. I've been on the sister ship, the Getaway, and liked the Epic much better. The staff/waiters/bartenders were much friendlier, the bars were cooler and the atmosphere was more laid back. Had a studio and we all loved the studio lounge and our bartender, Neli, was super nice, knew our names and the drinks we drank. The Med is a not your typical cruise as you are at port 6/7 days, so you aren't on the ship as much as you regularly are, but when you are the food is good, bars are hopping and there's something for everyone. We especially had a good time at the dueling piano bar as well as listening to Brenda Cochrane belt out Bette Midler tunes. Don't miss Le Bistro as it's a fab French restaurant, but you can skip Cagney's as you can get prime rib in the main dining room for free. The Manhatten Room (main dining) takes about 2 1/2 hours to eat dinner, so if you want, go to Taste (free and same food) for 1/2 the time. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Another great trip with the Epic, first time as a solo guest in the studios. Studios are great, small but everything you need for a single guest. Staff was friendly and going the extra mile, as always nothing to complain about the staff on ... Read More
Another great trip with the Epic, first time as a solo guest in the studios. Studios are great, small but everything you need for a single guest. Staff was friendly and going the extra mile, as always nothing to complain about the staff on Norwegian. Food very good, seems to have even improved since my last cruise with more options in the main dining rooms and new specialty options. Buffet very good, but can get crowded on busy (sea) days. Entertainment is top of the notch on the Epic. Great team, wonderful Cruise Director Scott, magnificent shows and performances. You won't get bored on this ship. Yes, the ship has its flaws, but if you can look over them and realize thatt you are on vacation and should relax, the Epic is a really good ship. Would definately go on the Epic again. Overall, I do prefer the freestyle cruising over the classic cruising so Norwegian remains the way to go for me. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
I just loved my cruise, always so many people that are negative, but I had a great time onboard. And the ports on this is just so interesting.. We had booked excursions in almost every port, and they wore great.. the only thing that was a ... Read More
I just loved my cruise, always so many people that are negative, but I had a great time onboard. And the ports on this is just so interesting.. We had booked excursions in almost every port, and they wore great.. the only thing that was a little down, was the queueing to get the sticker, but as soon as you got that, it took no time to get out of the ship and to the waiting bus. The food was good, and I did like the Manhattan room best for dinner, I dont like the atmosphere at Taste. The noodle bare is also very good for a quick bite, and I love the Italian.. the view from there is so nice. I did found th staff to be very nice, just talk to them and be like a normal person, and they will smile and give you super service, ( I always see so many demanding and rude persons, and if you are one you dont deserve good service) Entertainmetn onboard was sooo good, I love Pricilla, and I saw that 3 times, it is way better onboard that on Westend. Burn the floor is amazing as well, the dancers wore fantastic. waites I always got bar service quick and waiters was around always to serve you drinks. This was my second time on the Epic, I like this ship, and I cant wait to go bat on the TA in November. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Chose this cruise for the second time as I was traveling solo and really liked the itinerary. Enjoyed the trip the last time I did it and for the most part enjoyed this cruise too. Met some lovely people in the lounge and there is always ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the second time as I was traveling solo and really liked the itinerary. Enjoyed the trip the last time I did it and for the most part enjoyed this cruise too. Met some lovely people in the lounge and there is always someone looking to have you join a group for dinner. So make sure to go to the lounge prior to 6 pm if you want to join the groups and meet people. My only huge issue was the cabin location. I was in 12350 and my mistake was not verifying what was next to it. There was a large mechanical room (A/C) and it was loud in the cabin. I was very disappointed and almost walked off the ship but guest services did help out after about 3 attempts to discuss it with them. They did move me to 11500 which was a little quieter but there was a housekeeping cabin next to it and you could hear things moving around when the seas were rough. Then the last night I had to move back to the cabin as someone was coming on board for that room. It was a little bit of a hassle, packing and unpacking. I kind of think the solo cabins overall seem to be a little louder in the hallways, etc. Other floors didn't appear to be as loud in the hallways either. I did have the beverage package for all types of beverages. Honestly, I thought the cost which was just the tax and tips was a pretty good deal. Also, bought some WIFI which was a little pricey for how slow the connection speed can be but I needed to be able to check in at home. Had the speciality package for three meals. Cagneys was yummy and highly recommend it. Also did the Teppanayki (SP) with a few people and that was fun too. Did do the Cirque show which the show was good but the food was just okay. I thought the food was good. Believe the dining room Manhattan is nicer than Taste for the free meals. We did have dinner in the Asian restaurant which was okay. I heard the noodles were better than the "chinese food". It was nice to have something made to order. O'Sheehans isn't bad either for a quick bit. Like the location and atmosphere. If you are expecting Celebrity type service this isn't the cruise for you. Overall most employees were pleasant and felt the ship was maintained fine. My cabin steward for 12350 was non existent. The cabin steward for 11500, she was good and no complaints. Just a side note for people who don't know how to go through a buffet. Use a clean plate every time. And if you touch a plate and don't want it then find a server to take it away. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
My wife spotted this deal on one of the major cruise TV shows and the price was good considering it included flights and transfers, but what really swung it was the inclusion of NCL's extremely expensive Ultimate Beverage Package as a ... Read More
My wife spotted this deal on one of the major cruise TV shows and the price was good considering it included flights and transfers, but what really swung it was the inclusion of NCL's extremely expensive Ultimate Beverage Package as a freebie. We ended up as a party of seven, My wife, daughter, daughter - in - law and myself had all cruised with NCL previously. My mother - in - law and her husband had cruised before but not with NCL and my mother was a first time cruiser. Between us we had a range of staterooms from an inside through a solo cabin and up to a couple of balcony cabins. The layout of the cabins took some getting used to with the toilet, the shower and the sink not being closed off in a separate bathroom. It quickly became obvious why NCL had done this as it gave the staterooms a feeling of having more space. As usual the staterooms were kept clean and supplied constantly with coffee etc. My daughter is still mystified as to why NCL do not supply a coffee maker in the Inside staterooms. My wife and I were equally mystified as to why there were no dressing gowns in the balcony staterooms, as they had been supplied last year in our balcony stateroom on The Gem. The solo cabin and facilities that come with it are excellent, and my mother didn't have to far for her morning fix of coffee. Overall everyone was very pleased with the staterooms. The Epic is huge, although in Barcelona it was dwarfed by RCL's Harmony of the Seas which was moored next to us at the pier. Having previously cruised on the Gem (twice) and Fred Olsens Braemar, which has less than 1000 passengers, we were all a bit worried that the Epic might be too big. This was not the case, in the end you could've been on any of NCL's ships just with a few extras, like the Ice Bar and Spice H2O thrown in. Dining as usual on NCL was very good. We only dined once in the Manhattan Restaurant but considering we were a table of seven the whole thing was handled and timed really well and the food was good. My wife and others also dined in Taste which they said was also very good. The main dining option for the rest was the Garden Buffet which has some really great food and so many options. For all the excellence of the dining, it was this that also led to a couple of disappointments, the first was a late night meal at O'Sheehans which was poor and the other was the new practice of charging for certain items in the main complimentary restaurants. I was looking forward to the Surf and Turf until one of our party noted that this would actually cost me around $25, this was the same for another couple of dishes, mostly involving Lobster from Maine. My advice to NCL is to either source your lobster from Europe (on this particular cruise) or don't have the dish on the menu in the complimentary dining options. We were entertained very well. The main show on the cruise was a very professional and very good Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. My mother also took in the Cirque Dreams show which she said was amazing but again let down by poor food, which considering the whole thing came to around $30 is a bit much. The quizzes and general entertainment such as parties was great and well done. The bars on board were as usual very well staffed and run. The itinerary was good, the trouble is if you wanted a full day anywhere it meant getting up extremely early, something I try to avoid when on holiday. As slightly more experienced cruisers we decided to DIY most of the ports as yet again NCL's excursions were extremely pricey. In Naples we went to Pompeii we hired a taxi at the port, this took us to Pompeii, waited 3 hours, visited a very nice Limoncello emporium then gave us a tour around the back streets of Naples for about 30 Euros and we paid 12 Euros entry to Pompeii. For Rome we jumped o the free shuttle to the port gates, the 2 Euros for a bus to Civitavecchia rail station. There we bought a return ticket and a ticket for a Hop on Hop off tourist bus in Rome. We saw everything we wanted for 47 euros each. In Livorno we hired a minibus at the dockside to take us to Pisa and wait a couple of hours. We didn't feel we had time to do Florence although there were drivers prepared to do both Pisa and Florence and wait in both places for 400 euros, which for the seven of us would have been about 58 euros each. Cannes and Marseille were just a couple of hours ashore, although in Marseille we had to catch the NCL shuttle at $15 each return. Embarkation was quick and easy with no distinction made between latitudes members and non members. Disembarkation was different as somebody accidentally took one of our bags and left there own. NCL were brilliant, they tracked down the person and bag at the airport and by the time we arrived on our shuttle our bag was waiting for us. Overall impressions. Well the cruise would have got 5 stars if it wasn't for NCL trying to squeeze more and more money from people. Charging for food in the complimentary restaurants, charging for most room service, the Ultimate Beverage Package does not cover all beverages only those to a value of $15 and there were quite a few drinks that were over that value, OK I got it free but if I'd paid £440 for it I'd have been pretty narked and lastly the cost of the excursions was almost prohibitive. On the plus side the service, stateroom, entertainment and most of the food was excellent, the itinerary is also good but personally I'd maybe cut one stop out and add an extra sea day. Would I go on this cruise again. Yes. Would I sail with NCL again Yes they're my favourite cruise line, but they can stop trying to squeeze money from me. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
I chose this cruise because I left my teenagers at home and wanted a single cabin. This was my 14th cruise but my first solo cruise. The studio cabin was very functional and I met other single travellers in the lounge for dinner every ... Read More
I chose this cruise because I left my teenagers at home and wanted a single cabin. This was my 14th cruise but my first solo cruise. The studio cabin was very functional and I met other single travellers in the lounge for dinner every evening. I helped organize a pub crawl, that was a hoot, and partied at the H2O dance party every evening with people that I met in the lounge. The shows were great. The ports despite the heat were wonderful and since I had cruised this area before I was able to have a great mix of port and ship days to fully enjoy the experience. I would do this again in a heartbeat. The food was excellent and there were so many activities to access on board. Special thanks to Matt from Norway and Claire from England for making my cruise so memorable. I travelled with someone else in the singles cabin who was 70. It was her first cruise and she is already planning her next one. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
Traveled for the first time in the solo cabin area. It was a safe haven from 2,000 children on board. Wonderful bartender at end of the day in solo area. Our Belgian leader tried to organize dinners but the reservations were early. Very ... Read More
Traveled for the first time in the solo cabin area. It was a safe haven from 2,000 children on board. Wonderful bartender at end of the day in solo area. Our Belgian leader tried to organize dinners but the reservations were early. Very rude passenger who organized her own things & made it difficult for all. Nights we did eat together were very enjoyable. Food was very good, and staff was wonderful. Loved my omelettes, burgers, steaks, Chinese food etc. Lots of choices and very hard working group of cooks, waiters and bartenders. Love to swim but it was disgusting in the pools. Whatever happened to having one pool for those of us who like to swim laps. Solo passengers in regular part of the ship said they felt humiliated when seated alone in restaurant. Underage children sat at the adult bar with their parents and tried to get drinks. I spent a lot of time but not a lot of money on researching shore excursions. I was so happy to get off the ship in Naples, Florence etc. I enjoyed all of my excursions except for Rome. I would not go on this ship again. I can go to a theme park and have the same experience with screaming children. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
All in all for the price the cruise was really good! I didn't pay too much at all so the things that might have bothered me otherwise didn't. I was in the Solo Cabin so I also believe my experience was different from the non ... Read More
All in all for the price the cruise was really good! I didn't pay too much at all so the things that might have bothered me otherwise didn't. I was in the Solo Cabin so I also believe my experience was different from the non solo. The biggest issue I have is with the men in the solo cabins (not all!) but a lot of them seem to be on the cruise for one reason and many of the ladies in the solo cabins felt it and when I polled them they said they would not do the solo cruise again because of this reason. Norwegian can't really control that. The food in the specialty dining was amazing! But the service was quite slow. The food in the buffet was great but I didn't like the pizza at all. Horrible. I loved the smoked salmon and capers for breakfast. Yummy!!! All the staff were really friendly and helpful except for just one or two. Embarkment is a mess. I didn't like that process what so ever. They also don't warn you that you will have to do a safety drill in the afternoon after boarding in Barcelona. Flying from the USA I had not been to sleep and wanted to nap. It was not a great experience. The drinks are amazing!! The espresso martini in the martini bar is DY-NO-MITE!! I had about 10 lol. The bushwacker is also amazing!!! All drinks were really good and not watered down at ALL so beware lol The ship is noisier than I expected. Most mornings around 7am have announcements. I didn't sleep in once. The pools are small and filled with kids. Even the pool on the H2o adult spice area is tiny and people stated it was hot like bath water. I WILL DO THIS AGAIN!!!! Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Being our first cruise as a family I was very reluctant to go on the Norwegian Epic due to the low rating I noticed on different sites but that was too late as I had already paid the full trip amount and wasn't ready to bare the ... Read More
Being our first cruise as a family I was very reluctant to go on the Norwegian Epic due to the low rating I noticed on different sites but that was too late as I had already paid the full trip amount and wasn't ready to bare the cancellation fees. To my amazing surprise that was my best vacation ever and the Epic was so great that I'll never cruise in a different ship. We were 3 adults (my wife, my 21 years old son and myself) in a triple cabin with balcony. The cabin was spotless clean, very good size for a ship cabin as I was expected a much smaller size, the balcony with 2 big size beds was a very big plus. The room design in all aspects including the bathroom was so creative with great space for storage . Dinning at different a la carte restaurant (still complementary) and the big open buffet restaurant was a great part of the trip with endless excellent choices of food and great quality. Non stop Entertainment and different shows were a big problem as we were torn between going down to different port and to stay to enjoy the entertainment. Service, staff, food, entertainment, .... just name it, every thing was perfect. The only draw back was: 1- They don't allow you for even a small bottle of water to bring with you and to buy it there is too pricey. A daily complementary water bottle at the cabin will be a nice gesture to Epic guests. 2- Organized shores excursions are soooooo expensive, so better plan your excursions by yourself in advance and it will cost just a fraction of what they are offering. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Cruised B2B on June / July in Studio cabin. Have cruised before on MSC, Celebrity and Royal Caribbean. This was my first cruise on NCL. Overall ship is very nice. From outside it is not so nice looking due to shape but all venues are ... Read More
Cruised B2B on June / July in Studio cabin. Have cruised before on MSC, Celebrity and Royal Caribbean. This was my first cruise on NCL. Overall ship is very nice. From outside it is not so nice looking due to shape but all venues are clean and modern. Studio cabin was better than I expected. Thanks to clever design there is plenty of storage space in the cabin. Worked perfectly for me. Used mainly buffet for lunch and was happy with wide selection and food quality. On dinners I used always specialty dining and was mainly happy with the food. There were service hick ups with certain waiters but overall experience was really positive. I think entertainment on the ship was the best I have seen so far on cruise ships. There is plenty of options for having good time. Despite few hick ups in restaurants service was really good and friendly. The biggest issue for me was the internet connection. It was way too slow and there were plenty of connection issues. Concerning the really expensive price compared to other cruise lines - connection quality was unacceptable. Wouldn't cruise again until they have fixed the connection speed and changed their pricing. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
The criteria was pretty good: price, room for singles, exact days for my vacation. That's all I can say that's positive. During embarkation my luggage wasn't on my room. They torn away the paper you had to put around the ... Read More
The criteria was pretty good: price, room for singles, exact days for my vacation. That's all I can say that's positive. During embarkation my luggage wasn't on my room. They torn away the paper you had to put around the handle. I even put it around the handle you normally do not use when carrying a luggage but they still manage to rip it. Had to call around 20:00 of the first day to recover it. On the first day I found you can't turn off the A/A of the room. You just can regulate the temperature -cool, colder or very cool-. Tried the bathroom and had a leak on the shower head. Asked for a fix and they ignored me. During the night I couldn't speel at all because there was a maintenance room at the other side of the aisle, where they installed the air machine for all the room on that aisle. Too much noise and vibration is a bad combination in order to sleep well. On the second day I went to customer support to explain my case. They said that noise was pretty normal and they couldn't do anything. They still didn't fix the shower either. On that night my neighbors -yes, in plural, even in a "single room"- thought it was a good idea to party up to 3 AM. I called for security to do something and ignored my complain. That was the second night I couldn't sleep at all. On the morning of the third day I asked for the claim form. They said they only have a paper mail thing, so they aren't carrying official claim forms. After that and explaining all the stuff happens last two days they didn't seem to care at all, didn't even offer something for the headache (in their website it says that you have free medicine on customer service) and didn't offer a room change either. They said they were on full capacity. After that I had to leave the ship in order to ensure my health. And what about entertainment? Well, I hope those were odd jobs because everyone I found were so-so. For example, during a broadcasting about Bingo he was dull while explaning about it. I still can remember his last phrase: "it's bingo time, baaby". They also did some trivial about movie titles and couldn't even motivate to take part on it. Those around the trivial were more preocupied in counting floor tiles. By the way, you will find that if you are not a morning person you will never touch a hammock on the pool. Maybe on the first day or during shore excursions but not when you have free time during voyage. Dining was decent, so I don't have any complain about it. Do yourself a favor and never ever choose this company. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
I have just come back off the Norwegian Epic after taking my elderly father on his first holiday in over 10 years. Disappointed isn't a word I can use strongly enough after the horrendous holiday we have just endured. We were met ... Read More
I have just come back off the Norwegian Epic after taking my elderly father on his first holiday in over 10 years. Disappointed isn't a word I can use strongly enough after the horrendous holiday we have just endured. We were met by over 3,000 Japanese/Chinese passengers who were totally rude, pushing, shoving, fighting to get into the lifts and nearly knocking my father over. These people had no regard to any of the remaining passengers on board and overtook all of the restaurants and seating areas the whole time. We were informed by the staff that we could not dine in the free dining areas as they were full and we waited one evening for over an hour just to get a seat. When we were eventually seated we couldn't have a conversation due the noise levels and we were also pushed at our table so these passengers could take selfies of each other by the window behind us. We were eventually forced to book the fine dining restaurants just so we could have dinner without all the chaos. After queuing at Customer services on the ship for over half an hour, I did tried to complain but they were not interested and advised I should write to NCL after our holiday! The ship was dull with very few nice places to sit and enjoy the view. There was no indoor pool so when the weather was poor we had no place to go. The entertainment was average with only two shows on which rotated every other night. Every other cruise ship I have been on had wonderful entertainment and a different show each night of the week. We spent all evening each night in the champagne bar which was always quiet and peaceful and probably the best area on the ship. The trips and places we visited were wonderful but we booked our excursions with Cruise Excursions and thank goodness we did! After paying over £1300 each for our holiday, we feel totally robbed. I have travelled with other cruise liners and had a wonderful holiday but this experience has left my father traumatised and not wanting to go on another cruise ever again. Norwegian should have informed us that these passengers would have been joining us and we could have decided ourselves if we wanted to continue with our trip. I will never travel with this company ever again! Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
With all the negative posts in the forum, i was a bit scared on how my experience would be....so i have just one word to describe my experience on the NCL EPIC -- "FANTABULOUS" the ship is fantastic - the crew is fantastic - ... Read More
With all the negative posts in the forum, i was a bit scared on how my experience would be....so i have just one word to describe my experience on the NCL EPIC -- "FANTABULOUS" the ship is fantastic - the crew is fantastic - the service is fantastic only suggestion for people who wish to take this cruise - please ensure that you have a beverage pack -- as alcohol is prohibitively expensive on the ship in terms of room - i thought it was as good as any decent hotel room with more than enough storage space and comfortable beds (i am 180cms in height - and i didnt have any issues) We - a couple and our teenage daughter were booked in the mini suite - on deck 10 - no 10257 and all of us had a super time the teenage club (entourage) kept by daughter busy as she met a lot of other teenagers from across the globe --- the bar on the 15th deck - kept me busy as i too met a whole lot of new people there and we hit off very well only complaint about the cruise - was the weather -- it was pretty windy and cold in terms of food - we tried all the complementary restaurants (no speciality ones) and the food was pretty pretty good - the garden cafe had a super buffet / shanghai food was great / o sheeshans was very good too -- taste and manhattan - we didnt really enjoy - but it was not our taste-- the food and presentation was super Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
I have to say it has been a great experience for me as it was my first cruise, Embarking looked daunting as there was such large crowd But they went through them quite quickly, it took me awhile getting my bearings ,And once I got a ... Read More
I have to say it has been a great experience for me as it was my first cruise, Embarking looked daunting as there was such large crowd But they went through them quite quickly, it took me awhile getting my bearings ,And once I got a marker for my room I was too , I then explored the ship which is very large ,The solo lounge is a good ploy as you meet lots of people same as you, And you can get friends for dinner and plan excursions , All the staff are very pleasant and call you by your first name which is nice , All the food was nice except for one which I had two bad meals in its called Taste. First time I had scallops and pasta when it arrived there was no scallops only cockles and as ex fisherman I would no the difference , And pasta was very salty you could not eat it,The second meal I went for duck it was that tuff you could break a tooth I complainers they took my room number but that was all I heard , Nothing else, And on the last day went to desk to make a complaint no one new any thing about it , So the head waiter came to talk to me he said they were larger ducks than they usually get , but I think they were sitting on a hot plate for awhile myself, Apart from that everything else was great ,Entertainment and bars were good so I would recommend this ship to anyone I will be booking another cruise in future. one tip I would say if you like a drink like me go for the UDP as the booze is quite pricey . Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
This was my first solo cruise (having done several cruises before with friends and family members). If you are thinking of taking a solo cruise this is the one for you, my advice is - do not hesitate. You will not be alone. i met and ... Read More
This was my first solo cruise (having done several cruises before with friends and family members). If you are thinking of taking a solo cruise this is the one for you, my advice is - do not hesitate. You will not be alone. i met and spent great time so many wonderful people from all over the world, some of them members here on Cruise Critic. Epic has 131 solo cabins, so there are plenty other people traveling alone. The solo lounge is a great place to make new friends and a dedicated crew member co-ordinates events and dining (without pressure) for you all to meet up. I met with lots of people who were just like me, independent but sociable. Solo cruising provides a safe environment to travel and socialize. Norwegian Cruise Lines have really caught on to this concept and have got it right. The standards on board were excellent. A luxurious ship that is well fitted. The food was the best I have experienced on any cruise ship and the staff were 'happy, happy' and very pleased to be involved in making the experience on Epic the best one, making every effort wherever they could. They were there with welcome drinks to greet you back on board and even danced us back onto the ship on our final sailing. The ship was scrupulously clean and the pools, water slides and entertainment were fabulous. The facilities overall were brilliant and the ship was well fitted. The only negative point was there were hardly ever any spare sets in the public areas as the ship was so busy, but it didn't really bother me much, there's always room for one somewhere. Everyone loved their solo cabins. A good description would be 'an igloo'. I absolutely loved mine. The mood lighting, touch screen TV and phone were just some of the luxury comforts the cabin had to offer. Perfectly sized for one, do not be put off. Check them out on www.youtube.com. I have booked this ship again but for the Caribbean for next year (who cares where it is going - the solo cruise experience is great!). I have tried various forms of solo holidays before but this was unbeatable. I simply cannot wait to go again ! Top marks to NCL staff. They were excellent !! Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
I traveled the on the Norwegian Epic for Thanksgiving 2015 which was touring the Mediterranean Barcelona to Barcelona. I picked the Norwegian Epic because after hours of reading reviews I saw Norwegian and Celebrity to be the best ... Read More
I traveled the on the Norwegian Epic for Thanksgiving 2015 which was touring the Mediterranean Barcelona to Barcelona. I picked the Norwegian Epic because after hours of reading reviews I saw Norwegian and Celebrity to be the best overall rated ships as well as with less kids during that time of year, and I picked a time it would not be so hot there. I was correct to do both. I am a bestselling author and have traveled the world-so I am doing a serious great review that ship [the Norwegian Epic] deserves. I was timid at first because I could not understand why the same ship and sail dates just returning-would have a huge disparity of reviews, ranging from one star to five star? How is that possible to be on the same ship and port of call and one traveler be thrilled and another miserable-or just "not happy?" or even just three star it. Well, after being on this ship I discovered one huge reason is happy people do not tend to find the time to do a review but unhappy people sure do make the time. After reading a multiple of reviews most unhappiness was related to their actual room choice. Such as they may not have understood "partial view" meant view of a lifeboat. Buffet food seemed to come in second and I noticed those leaving multi star reviews were not using the buffet everyday--and most reviews I was reading was the early days of this new ship where even the staff was trying to adapt. So I picked a port intensive cruise JUST in case I was not happy with the ship. But the most important thing I did was book a room that in and of itself had great reviews. Example, not near the children's center or not right under a bar. You really can check out reviews for the actual rooms these days. I picked cabin 13210 Norwegian Epic that was toward the back of the ship, had great reviews each time from former occupants and was just under the wonderful spa. I also made sure to just buy the $120 Spa pass which allowed me access during normal hours. So I would just leave the spa in my robe and go down one elevator flight to my room. I never had to change there. So the Mandara Spa pass was another great decision because their spa is very clean and lovely. They have waterfalls so powerful they alone can massage your neck and I assume the power comes from the sheer power of the Epic engine system. ***They only issue 120 passes so order yours on line BEFORE YOU GO. I hit the spa every day and they provided hair caps as not to ruin the "hair." And no, I did not book a cruise with the primary goal of pigging out at some buffet. I just lost a lover to cancer and wanted to get OUT of the house and not suffer my first holiday alone. This trip SURE did that and I learned so much! Now with the room issue, buffet sentiments and Spa pass out of the way-let me tell you about this trip and this boat. CABIN 13210 ROOM REVIEW My bed was SO comfortable it was unreal. Former reviews had me thinking I better take a blow up pool float as to avoid some hard bed. NONE of that was true. At least now. And there was ZERO scent coming from bathroom - so I found none of that to be true but brought essential oils just in case. Essential oils will float to surface and block any undesirable scents. Save that trick for Carnival. I picked Norwegian Epic Cabin 13210 because it had a bath tub. I am not a shower person and it was amazing that few knew which cabins had a bath tub-including my travel agent. I had a mini suite and I was able to get 30% off the double occupancy as a single. So, no singles are not quarantined to the lower cabins unless they want to be. And EVERY single I ran into liked their rooms below! And these were lawyers, doctors and so on. My Cabin was impeccably clean and my steward just so wonderful. His name was "Roady" and he created penguins, bunnies and so on-with towels to surprise me each day. I tipped him 50 Euros on day one because I recognized THAT would be my closest most important ally and relationship on the ship. And I was correct. The first day is wild so ask your fridge but UN-stocked the next day of your cruise. Meaning items you do not want to be charged for taking up space in your fridge. I think room service does that-any department answers their phone right away. And they know your name. I had ordered several cases of bottled water to be delivered before I even boarded the ship-four in fact, ($70) I could have gotten by with just two. But water is the second most important thing to your health. Thank heavens I do not drink alcohol because the beverage package can upset some. This served me well. I think with the beverage package people think they can drink until they drop. I also ordered an orchid flower arrangement that lasted the entire trip and was lovely to gaze upon. They last so long I gave them to my steward as I left-as well as the extra bottled water. The water, Spa pass, and flowers were nothing compared to the overall price of my trip. The other thing I heard a lot about is the bathrooms are so thin you can hear your partners every move, Well, you can run sink or bath water for "white noise." Otherwise I found it very well laid out and no, I would not be sharing a room with someone I was not in love with-so maybe the great surprise comes when two people go who are NOT into "seeing" each other. I saw enough curtains to deal with that issue-so this may have been an old issue. So the room was nice in every way and I cannot find any fault with the ship in general. There was so much to do, I could not possibly do everything. The balcony was lovely and I spent a lot of time out there. DINING I only did the Garden Cafe for breakfast and that is to the front of the ship-and they offer a very nice array of poached eggs, eggs Benedict, museili, croissants, honey and my favorite-a corned beef hash that was "diced" with rosemary and not smooshy. So breakfast is a large array at that garden cafe, From the Garden cafe you can see the ocean-or, in this case, the Mediterranean Sea. You do have to work your way around to get all the goods, it is a huge Cafe. Teppanyaki was my favorite and the healthiest meal I had on the entire trip. That $20 meal would cost $40++ per person on land. And I met some great people. Even in the "Spa" I met some great people. I also ate at Cagney's and "Taste" and they were wonderful. For a basic great hamburger I went to O'Sheehans pub. I also ordered a beautiful prime rib from the pub the night before we disembarked and it was no charge. There is a cool bowling alley right along side of O'Sheehans pub. ACTIVITIES There were so many activities on the ship there is no way you can do them all in a seven day trip and there is also no way you can claim to be bored. ENTERTAINMENT Was great, I went to all the shows but I loved the 70's live band whose bar is located near the Casino and any band they had there was very good. I had to drag myself away each time I was there-because they were all so good and I needed to get to bed for morning shore excursions. INTERNET PACKAGE I picked 250 minutes but next time I will just pick the dining package if I get to pick a free feature. This is because I really wanted unlimited and that was $29 a day-BUT for my work--it is a must. Reception was not that bad and my cell phone allowed free texting and WIFI so I was more than covered there. BOARDING AND DE BOARDING Was no big deal and the staff made it fun each time. I think it depends on how full the ship is and I am guessing my ship was half full. CASINO This is where I had the most fun and could secure the least information on the Internet before I went on the Norwegian Epic. The slots are a LOT of fun and I actually left ahead by $242 even using the penny machines. There are many, many different type of slot machines. Black Jack I left ahead $602 because I know HOW to play Black Jack. The Norwegian Epic Casino is large and NO it is not full of smokers. The Epic limits smokers to a certain room-so just do not try to be in that room. I made some good friends in the Casino because we seemed to be creaming the dealer. SANITATION Automatic hand sanitizers were everywhere and I never saw one person sick on the ship except myself and saw the ships Doctor. Yes, the ship has a Doctor and they run about $149 USD plus any meds they may have that you need. I had forgot medication at home so they were able to provide it. OVERALL Norwegian Epic is a beautiful ship and I will aim to only cruise Norwegian from now on. Pricing and check out was MORE than fair. I did not have a lot of fees except fees I knew about like $10 every time I wanted cookies and milk brought to my room at midnight-which seemed to be every night. We did go through a few stormy nights at first and the cookies and milk did the trick. So they do not charge for the food - just the delivery of it. And they are FAST! One night I had pizza delivered. The Norwegian Epic has many departments and each and every department was working at optimal performance. Never once was anyone mean or failing to TRY to accommodate me. They bent over backwards to make people happy and I recognize they probably miss their own families also, so that your family can make great memories. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Norwegian Epic Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 3.7
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 5.0 4.0
Public Rooms 4.0 3.8
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 5.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 4.0 3.8
Value For Money 4.0 3.5
Rates 4.0 3.7

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