3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise because we were visiting Oahu anyway and wanted to see more of the islands. The Pride is the only one that tours the islands of Hawaii without a major ocean crossing. Our cabin was very comfortable with a king size ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we were visiting Oahu anyway and wanted to see more of the islands. The Pride is the only one that tours the islands of Hawaii without a major ocean crossing. Our cabin was very comfortable with a king size bed and enough storage. The balcony was on the small side but had a railing with steel bars that made it easy to see thru when seated. Other ships sometimes have solid steel plates that prevent you from seeing the water when seated. Overall the dining experience was good. The selection at the buffet was good albeit very unusual at times (I've never seen carved duck at a buffet before). The main dining room food and service was excellent. We ate at two of the specialty restaurants, Cagney's is a traditional steakhouse and Moderno is a Brazilian style steakhouse. At Cagney's both my wife and I had steaks that were very tough. A complaint to the manager got us some chocolate covered strawberries delivered to our stateroom. Moderno is an experience worth having in itself. The food was also excellent. Of the two, Moderno is the best choice. We do not travel with children but it didn't appear that there were many activities for kids. The pools were basic and there were no slides or other kid friendly attractions that I could find. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
My husband and I wanted to do Hawaii for our 20th wedding anniversary. This trip (NCL part of it) was recommended by my husband's parents. We flew into Honolulu on 5/1 and stayed until 5/4, where we boarded the Pride of America for ... Read More
My husband and I wanted to do Hawaii for our 20th wedding anniversary. This trip (NCL part of it) was recommended by my husband's parents. We flew into Honolulu on 5/1 and stayed until 5/4, where we boarded the Pride of America for a 7 night/8 day cruise. We selected several excursions through the ship. I also purchased a Happy Anniversary room decorating package and a Romance Package, which were both very nice and a really good deal. Before we embarked, we were offered the chance to improve our stateroom by bidding on two larger (upscale) rooms, as we were in the basic cheapest room. We won the bid, and wound up with a large room with balcony! Only cost me $100 more total! The excursions we picked (four of them) were amazing and we had so much fun. We had dinner in La Cucina one night, and the food and service was phenom! We tried the sushi bar one night as an appetizer to our main dining room, and we enjoyed that as well. All in all, we had a great time, the staff was very nice, the ship was clean and easy to navigate inside and out. The entertainment was really good too. Those kids dance their hearts out and they are very talented! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
First time cruiser, so much of the information below was gleaned from that perspective. I'm a planner, and want to have information before a trip begins... We chose this cruise because my mother (Deaf, senior citizen, mobility ... Read More
First time cruiser, so much of the information below was gleaned from that perspective. I'm a planner, and want to have information before a trip begins... We chose this cruise because my mother (Deaf, senior citizen, mobility impaired) wanted to see "all" of the islands, for the last state on her list of visiting all of the United States. Of course, seeing ALL of the islands isn't possible, and inter-island transfers are prohibitively expensive, so we chose to do the NCL cruise. My parents have been on an NCL Alaskan cruise, and were happy to go again. My husband and I have never wanted to do a cruise, and this experience cemented that opinion. Yes, it was handy to unpack once, have food available when wanted, and to be moved from island to island. However, there were well over 2,000 guests onboard, and there are ALWAYS people EVERYWHERE. Getting on and off the ship was quite time consuming, and the tendering in Kona caused my mobility impaired mother to have to stay on the ship (and this tendering was NOT advertised in the materials, nor was it included in the 'before you sail' documents). We had a few other suggestions for improvements, but the cruise did the job of getting us to 4 separate islands. On the flip side, the times when I interpreted (sign language) for my parents, the staff were very accommodating and welcoming. This included the mandatory drill, shopping, disembarkation, embarkation, and dining. The cabin they were in was for disability, but not for Deaf/Hard of Hearing. The ship provided a mobile door unit (lights up when the door is knocked upon), and our steward changed the batteries on the second day. It worked well after that. Because the excursions through NCL were crazy marked up, especially for a group of 4, we rented a car in each port, except for Honolulu. That process also took upwards of two hours for waiting for/riding the shuttle, rental, gassing up, and the return shuttle. Even so, getting a car was the best choice. We got to do what we wanted, when we wanted, without being with a crowd of co-passengers. Even with the car rental fee, we saved money over paying NCL prices for tour tickets. Parking overnight was explained by shuttle drivers...obviously much more up to date than comments online. No problems with that in the 2 locations that were overnight in port. (Maui was overnight parking at/by the airport, use the shuttle to get to/from the ship; Kauai was at the ABC store just down the street ($20) or on that street (free)--a walk of 2-3 blocks. Easy. We booked a Maui Gold Pineapple tour (excellent), and were able to bring our complimentary pineapples onboard. Hawaii has a contract with airlines so that they can be carried on a flight with no extra charge. Our steward "G," was AMAZING, and helped to redeem the onboard experience. I'd hire him in a heartbeat for ANY job. We were aware that cruise lines are all about entertainment, including programs for kids, programs/shows for adults, and shopping. There are a variety of shops onboard, and similar shops at ports. I know that in Juneau, the cruise line owns many/most of the shops at the port...so am suspecting that may be true on Hawaii, as well. Go away from the port to shop, or to get a true Hawaiian experience. We met many amazing locals by exploring. The shows were really geared toward people who enjoy the Vegas-type experience...or summer camp on steroids. We went to one, and that was enough. With a full day and a good dinner, we just had quiet evenings in our cabins. My parents got a balcony cabin, so we all enjoyed the views. We chose a Luau at Lahaina, and it was wonderful! I looked at the pictures from the cruise-sanctioned event on Kauai, and it didn't come close to the excellence level of the Old Lahaina Luau. Again, a car is necessary to do most activities not provided by NCL. The end of the cruise included a swing by the Napali coast. Fortunately, my parents' balcony room was on the port side, as that's the side that saw the coast (luck of the draw, as that information is not provided ahead of time). The coast is beautiful...we left port at about 2:00, arrived there at about 5:15. We wish we'd had that time frame, as we had dinner reservations at 5:30. It was nice that the windows at La Cucina are on the port side, as well, so we could continue to view the spectacular scenery. If you are at all sensitive to wave motion, do NOT book a cruise. It wasn't stormy, but MANY guests were seasick the first couple of nights (staff, too). The seas weren't flat, just had swells. The movement of such a big boat was amazing! Passengers were laughing down the hallways, because we all looked like drunkards. This made it difficult for my mother, who uses a cane for stability. She had to hold on to the railings, or to us. Hand rails are missing across doorways, so when the ship is really rolling she held onto us. The 2 nights sleeping in port were lovely, no movement. Food: There is a staff member standing at the doorway of the buffet to squirt sanitizer into everyone's hands. There are stations as well, but many passengers go right on by. And then you see the people who sneeze all over their hands and touch things. Sigh. The buffet food was ample and had many choices. The burger buns were amazing, and the rest of the food was chain hotel average to above average. Breakfast pastries and soft serve ice cream only offered on one side. LOTS of people, and many don't seem to understand that there are LOTS of people, and so should be not standing stock still in the middle of everything, looking at what to eat next (or shouldn't just push in to the front of a line). Or standing in a group, having a conversation. Watch out for people who allow their children to run. Be prepared. Don't expect to be able to get through quickly. We ate Friday night at La Cucina ($$ on top of the "complimentary" dining), and it was worth it. Not excellent, but very good, and the windows provide great views. The setting was much more intimate than the buffet area, and the service was stellar. Beverages: Only water, coffee, tea, orange/cranberry/apple juice, milk and lemonade were available with the cost of the cruise. All alcohol is extra, as is pop/soda/coke. I can understand the alcohol, but soda? That's cheaper than juice and milk! It's $7.95 per person, per day for soda! The alcohol is priced at hotel bar levels. The drink of the day is $8.95, about a dollar less than the regular price, and each day's offering is listed in the newsletter. They aren't stiff drinks, but not watery, either. There was a whiskey tasting "class," which turned out to be all Jack Daniels products. The lecturer passed along misinformation, but overall a nice hour. $19, and totaled about 2 shots. If you desire to drink, do it onshore. Or, buy wine at the market and pay the $15 corking fee, it will save you big bucks. Wine: A bottle that I know is under $10 at the grocery store was on offer for almost $50. Glasses start at about $8. 2 days after the cruise was underway, a "Vino" package was mentioned in the newsletter (not online prior to cruising), which turned out to be a choice of 4, 6, or 8 bottles for a flat price (tiered for expensiveness of the wines). I don't know if it was available from the beginning; talk to a bartender or server for information. All of the above said, we're glad we chose to do the cruise, because it enabled us to see 4 of the Hawaiian islands. It was very much like being in a huge, all-inclusive resort. Not our cup of tea, but it served its purpose, and I know that there are (obviously) people who desire that type of vacation. We loved seeing Hawaii, and had a great time with my parents. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
My wife bought this cruise to Hawaii for my 60th birthday. The one thing we loved was there was never anyone in your face at dinner,lunch,ect taking pictures of you. We love the freestyle dinning. I cant complain,because there was no ... Read More
My wife bought this cruise to Hawaii for my 60th birthday. The one thing we loved was there was never anyone in your face at dinner,lunch,ect taking pictures of you. We love the freestyle dinning. I cant complain,because there was no gambling on this cruise,so I saved money ! I miss the fact that on carnival I could buy any bottle of liquer and have it brought to the room. Not this one. The bartenders especially( Alonso ?) from texas. He was very informative, friendly and fun to talk to. He would be at the pool bar in the morning. As for excursions , we booked all through ncl.Patrick at the excursion desk was very friendly and helped us with any changes we wanted to make. The helicopter and pinnaple tour with pig roast was well worth it. I even managed to get the saints vs dallas game on the boat. I am seriously considering taking another ncl cruise soon. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We enjoyed our trip to the various islands. Disappointed that we did not get to see the Na Pali Coast; they did give us each $100 for on ship credit. The food was good, I was hoping for a variety of horderves to try. The coffee in the ... Read More
We enjoyed our trip to the various islands. Disappointed that we did not get to see the Na Pali Coast; they did give us each $100 for on ship credit. The food was good, I was hoping for a variety of horderves to try. The coffee in the Gold Rush lounge was always barely warm. The staff was very nice and helpful. Laundry service was more expensive than other cruise lines but they did do a good job. We played checkers and shuffle board on deck, that was fun. The pools were nice, one hot tub never worked and several of them worked to well, pushed water into your face. They had nice shows for entertainment, the show on the last night was amazing. Having more options for when your on the ship at night would have been nice, like cooking classes, etc. I liked the ability to store luggage under the bed and there were a few drawers which limited how much we had to access the suitcase. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
I have never done a cruise before. I don't know that I ever will again. I went on this cruise to accompany my 86 year old father and spend some times with friends from Australia. We had a mid-ship cabin with a full view balcony that ... Read More
I have never done a cruise before. I don't know that I ever will again. I went on this cruise to accompany my 86 year old father and spend some times with friends from Australia. We had a mid-ship cabin with a full view balcony that had a bit of rust. There was plenty of closet space and ample room under the bed. I don't know if this is normal, but the shower was extremely small, making it impossible to wash your legs. The service on the ship was excellent, which surprised me given some reviews I had read. The buffet was edible, and the specialty restaurants have some pretty good food, but don't go on this cruise for the cuisine. The steak at Cagney's was very good, and the Teppanyaki was good and fun. The service in the bars, especially Pink's was excellent. The singers and dancers in the cabaret type shows were extremely good. We did not take any tours offered by the ship, opting for renting a car in Maui and Kauai and taking some smaller private tours in Kona and Hilo. Have a car in Maui was nice, but the logistics are pretty much a nightmare. It is a long walk through the terminal, and security at the port is very officious. Despite my begging and throwing out the Americans with Disabilities Act, they would not let me pick up my dad and other elderly people at the entrance to the terminal, making them walk about another 100 yards passed the security gate. Finally we had to spend 20 bucks to take a taxi the 100 yards to get them to the rental car. I had a Budget car, and the only overnight parking offered was to park at the airport, paying $15, taking the shuttle to Budget, and then taking another shuttle to the ship. Needless to say, we just sent the elderly back to the ship on another taxi. We did not take the road to Hana in the Suburban I rented. I download the Gypsy app, which cost about $10 bucks for Maui and another $8 for Kauai. The data is downloaded on your phone and narration is triggered by GPS location. We got a big kick out of the app, so it is worth using, although it was useful having a passenger using Google maps to get us going in the right direction. We explored the far western coast up to Kaanapali one day and the southern western coast down to Wailea the second day, stopping to snorkel on a nice beach at the southern end of Kihei. We stopped in Kihei at the Paia Fish Market, a place with walk up service and some of the best fresh fish I have ever had along with some local brew. Rental in Kauai was much better. The terminal is smaller and security lets you pull up your car pretty close. You can buy a parking pass at JJ's Broiler in Anchor Cove Shopping center to park your car, and the shopping center runs a continuous shuttle back and forth to the ship. We again used our Gypsy app and drove in the morning to Waimea Canyon, exploring the beaches at Poipu and the blow hole at Spouting Horn Park and the way. This was only about a three hour jaunt and very nice. We drop our friend back on the ship for a Luau her family had booked, and my dad and I drove through Kapaa and up the east coast to Kilauea lighthouse. It was closed when we got there, but the view was worth the trip. The next day we back to Kapaa and got some Hawaiian shave ice the gypsy app talked about every time we passed. OMG, this stuff is to die for. I had locally made soursop combined with an organic ginger syrup with mochi balls added. My friend got ginger, mochi balls and some coconut ice cream. We both made moaning noises. My dad didn't, but he ate the whole huge thing. We then went back to Poipu beach park, parked dad in a picnic area, and had some great snorkeling. This beach is very nice, but it is pretty much solid rock in the water, so bring some aqua shoes if you go there. We managed without them, but we were the only ones there without them. For tours on the big Island, we took a local company right off the ship. I'm not sure they were supposed to be soliciting there, but it was excellent. For Kona, we had booked MaryLou's, which was excellent. I would recommend them for the two days on the big island. In Hilo, terminal was not too big, and security was not officious, so it was pretty easy to get off the ship. For Kona, we had tenders, which are little boats that take you to the harbor. The process went pretty much as smoothly as it could, and I give commendations to the ship's crew for executing such a difficult task. I'm not sure it wouldn't be better to say in Hilo for two days and just drive or take tours to Kona. We did the standard tour stuff. We saw some beautiful Japanese gardens, farms, bees, etc., but I would have liked to have spent a few hours in the water at some of those beaches. Even though they were black rock, the water was blue, calm and inviting. Rainbow falls is a must see. It is worth going to Pu'uhonau O Nonaunau, which is a national park and sacred Hawaiian spot. If I were doing it over again, I would book a private tour with Marylou's and have them combine some sightseeing with a snorkel tour. We stayed on Waikiki after we got off the boat, but had been to the island a couple of times before. You have to get off the boat so early in the morning that there is no reason to stay there the night after unless you want to explore Oahu. I would recommend going there long enough before the ship embarks to make it worthwhile renting a car and skip the stay afterward. Anyway, I scoped out lots of places I would like to go back to. I am probably not a cruise person, and my wife definitely is not, so she stayed home, but I had a great time beside myself and can recommend this cruise even if you think it is not your sort of thing. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We heard good stories about the cleanliness & service on this ship and they were true for our Cruise in Hawaii in Oct 2018. The positives 1 The staff were all friendly and a very clean ship. 2. Speciality dining areas (the 3 ... Read More
We heard good stories about the cleanliness & service on this ship and they were true for our Cruise in Hawaii in Oct 2018. The positives 1 The staff were all friendly and a very clean ship. 2. Speciality dining areas (the 3 we visited Steak house, French & Brazilian) were first class, but very little attendances maybe because of their speciality prices. 3. Liberty & Skyline dining (no extra charges) were much more supported and the décor was both pleasant and nice & quite so you can talk to friends/passengers. 4. The loading and unloading of passengers at Honolulu was good after our 12 other cruises. 5. The night time floor shows were (I feel) above average but their volume was very loud 6. No real need to book/pay of on-shore excursions as lots of good private tour operators near or on the docks. 7. The biggest volume of passengers were 50+ age 8. Wifi is better to find on-shore if you search for them but on board ship too costly. The negatives or Thumbs Down A. You were not allowed to take on board one (1) bottle of wine per person like other cruises, so this gets the thumbs down for me. B. The price of drinks were all too high and being Australians we are not used to tipping, especially 20% as standard plus they ask for more. C. The prices offered to on-shore excursions were "way too expensive" and I put this down to GREET by this Shipping Company Pride of America. D. The sail away we were really looking forward to, but the music volume was just so high that it drove us and many other seniors away to other locations away from the noise. E. This ships Internet packages were way too expensive so we avoided them F. The buffet dining area was (I feel just average) with most food just warm Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose this cruise because we wanted a cruise that stopped at several HWaiian islands in a week instead of island hopping and spending days in airports. It was very relaxing to be able to have one room for the whole week to unpack in and ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted a cruise that stopped at several HWaiian islands in a week instead of island hopping and spending days in airports. It was very relaxing to be able to have one room for the whole week to unpack in and then have all your meals and a variety of entertainment choices available all day as well. The stafff truly pampers you. The ship is spacious and clean. There are plenty of free activities and food available to keep you busy and well fed. Embarkation and debarkation are organized and well executed. We rented cars at several ports and only had a bad experience in Kauai with Thrifty never sending a shuttle to the pier to pick up several passengers waiting to pick up their reserved vehicles. After an hour of standing in the hot sun and watching several other rental companies stop by 2-3 times most of us rebooked with Budget online and were picked up and transported there quickly. We wasted an hour of our day standing at the port waiting in vain for Thrifty. None of the port workers had phones or walkie talkies to contact these companies to see what the problem was. So I would discourage using Thrifty in Kauai port. We took the Body Glove. snorkeling excursion that included breakfast and lunch and several hours is swimming and snorkeling. People of all ages were able to partipate. The crew as very helpful and explained rules and tips to keep you safe. There were many older folks attempting to snorkel using life jackets and pool noodles to help float. Would give this excursion a 5/5 rating. Laid back and lots of fun. The ship food was average. The food service staff was exceptional. Every wait person was extremely gracious, kind, and polite. The Liberty Dining room serves the same menu as the Skyline dining room each evening. The only difference is you must dress up more for the Librrty Room. The Aloha buffet had a great salad bar and was much better option for those interested in a decent salad than getting one in the dining rooms. We started walking through the Aloha each evening to check out their selections each evening and then deciding which restaurant to actually eat at based on the nights selections. You can alwYs get a strip steak in the Skyline if nothing else appeals to you. We did find that taking sandwich plastic baggies to breakfast in the Aloha buffet allowed us to make sandwiches to pack for lunch later in the day. It was quite handy to have lunch ready to eat along the road or beach instead of trying to find a spot to eat out while exploring. We rented our own car each 3 ports and drove to tourist attractions on our own each day. Definitely need GPS to find things as streets and locations being marked clearly is hit or miss. We ran into many locals totally willing to bend over backwards to be helpful. We never were treated rude or nasty. They treat you better than family. On and off the ship. The entertainment varied. The comedian and the magician were very enjoyable. The dance group had great costumes and choreography but their execution was a little high school or amusement park level, lacking in arm extensions and precision. A few performers appeared to have had private dance lessons but most seemed to have learned on the job. Disembarkation was efficient and the lines moved quick enough. As we exited the terminal, there was a steady stream of taxis pulling in to pick up passengers. We were able to get a taxi to the airport right away and saw many people waiting in line for group shuttles. The set up to catch a cab was easy and painless. Cab cost the two of us around $30 plus tip to the airport. All in all it is definitely the way to see several Hawaiian islands in one week and get the most out of your visits to the islands. Next cruise for us is Alaska! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Only cruise to visit all the Hawaiian Islands. We did the extended cruise with three days at The Marriott Waikiki with excursions every day. We went to the North Shore and to the Polynesian Cultural Centre that was excellent. All day at ... Read More
Only cruise to visit all the Hawaiian Islands. We did the extended cruise with three days at The Marriott Waikiki with excursions every day. We went to the North Shore and to the Polynesian Cultural Centre that was excellent. All day at Pearl Harbour and the the next day with lunch provided at the Kaolua Ranch. Our tour guide Keou kept us all on our toes and nothing was too much for him. We especially enjoyed his singing! We really miss him. We really enjoyed our stay on board and the staff went out of their way to keep everyone happy. I cannot understand why everyone complains about this ship. It was spotless, our balcony cabin was more than adequate for my husband and myself. There was plenty of storage for all our clothes and the suitcases went under the bed. The bed was extremely comfortable. The bathroom was big enough for us, but Incan understand some larger people would find the shower a little tight. We only encountered staff who went out of their way to please us. Always cheerful and more than obliging. Of course we were disappointed when some of our shore excursions were cancelled due to Hurricane Lane. I missed the helicopter flight over Kawaii on my birthday. We mentioned this in passing to reception and when we went back to the cabin that night I found a lovely birthday card, bottle of wine, flowers and chocolate covered strawberries. We hadn't intended going to any shows but we ended up going to three, and they were fabulous! What great dancers and musicians! The last night was an absolute scream, a quickly put together dance off on the extra night of the cruise. We ate at four speciality restaurants. The food was very good at all of them but unfortunately for me a bit salty. The food was fine in the Buffet, a lot of choices and they catered for all tastes. Breakfast was especially good, though I heard people complaining it was a bit dry. Drinks were expensive but we bought the buckets of beer and the wine package. We just handed over the slips to get our wine and we were able to rake it to our cabin, unopened. I enjoyed the cocktails of the day but they definitely weren't full strength. The staff made this cruise for us. I am sorry for the people on the next cruise who will only have four days. I hope they will be refunded accordingly. I would go on this cruise again. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We really enjoyed our trip on the POA. We've done other NCL ships before but not this one. This ship is meant to stop/port multiple times but unfortunately because of hurricane Lane our port days were cut short. The Captain, ... Read More
We really enjoyed our trip on the POA. We've done other NCL ships before but not this one. This ship is meant to stop/port multiple times but unfortunately because of hurricane Lane our port days were cut short. The Captain, staff, and crew really made us feel safe and the ride wasn't too bad. Overall our room wasn't too bad, the bed was nice and we had a good view. Because there's not a lot of ports that a ship can port at in Hawaii some of them are more industrial so the views from out window weren't as nice but it doesn't matter much as you're off the ship exploring anyway. the food was pretty good at the restaurants. We had food in all the free options and we tried the Japanese restaurant which was a lot of fun and tasty. The entertainment on the ship was easily the best part of the cruise and really helped make the extra sea days go by. The cruise director Jami and assistant cruise director were awesome. The production shows were ok and the comedian was very funny but the best was the magician Kyle Marlett. He was hilarious and spent a lot of time with the guest, really made us feel special. Overall, the cruise was fun and we really enjoyed it. We are hoping to come back again just not during hurricane season haha! Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We had the hotel stay the night before at the Marriott Waikiki. Everything was well organized. The bus picked us up at 10:45 and we were on the boat by noon. We had lunch in the Aloha Café. It wasn’t crazy crowded and we had no problem ... Read More
We had the hotel stay the night before at the Marriott Waikiki. Everything was well organized. The bus picked us up at 10:45 and we were on the boat by noon. We had lunch in the Aloha Café. It wasn’t crazy crowded and we had no problem finding a seat for 5 of us. We did have to wait until about 3:30 for our room to be ready. They announced as each floor was ready. Ours was almost last; the first floor announced was ready around 2:00. The boat was fine. The stateroom (10046) was small but as expected for a cruise ship. There was about 18 inches between the bed and the wall, so only one person could pass thru at a time. The bathroom had no place to store supplies; no shelves, etc. We did bring a shower organizer that we got on Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00XPRV306/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 ). It hung on the 2 hooks that were already on the bathroom door. I would highly recommend this. The shower is really small; not much room to move around in there. They supply shampoo (no conditioner), liquid bath wash, liquid hand soap, a bar of soap and body lotion. There is a hairdryer and a mini bar fridge. There was room in the fridge to store our water bottles. There is plenty of storage space. We were able to store our luggage under the bed. We did bring a few folding clothes hangers. There are plenty of hangers available, but we had a lot of extra shirts and dresses, so they came in handy. We also brought some magnetic clips and magnetic hooks. I had never used these before on prior cruises but they did come in handy. The walls on this ship are metal so they worked everywhere. I bought a travel (cruise ready) power strip (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07BHVKPC3/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o02_s02?ie=UTF8&psc=1 ) but didn’t need to use it. There are 3 available electrical outlets; 2 in front of the mirror and a third behind the TV. The balcony is small, but was fine for the 2 of us. There are 2 chairs with 2 footrests, and a small table. The balcony has a metal railing not the plexiglass in front. Be aware if you have small children. The food was fine. We ate dinner in the Skyline restaurant (made reservations for 7 of us at 6:30 each evening). You can make the reservations online before the cruise. That will save having to do it while on the boat. We chose that restaurant because it is less formal than the Liberty restaurant. We did not use any of the specialty restaurants. The food was fine; no complaints. We ate breakfast most days in the Aloha Café. We were up early so we were there at 6 AM before it got crowded. We were on tours most afternoons so did not each much lunch on the ship. We only attended a few of the shows after dinner. The ones we saw were good; no complaints. Mostly we were tired after touring all day and getting up early. We did not frequent any of the bars. Nor did we attend any of the onboard activities. I would recommend allowing some downtime in your schedule. The tours we took were long and the weather is hot, so we were exhausted much of the time. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We picked this cruise because we have never been to Hawaii and we wanted to see as many islands as we could. My husband doesn't like to fly and the thought of flying and changing hotels every couple days didn't sound appealing. ... Read More
We picked this cruise because we have never been to Hawaii and we wanted to see as many islands as we could. My husband doesn't like to fly and the thought of flying and changing hotels every couple days didn't sound appealing. So this cruise fit perfectly. Once to unpack and the same bed for a week. I am not sure why there are so many bad reviews. The ship seemed fine to me. Yes, some of the areas could use some refurbishment. The food wasn't anything spectacular - but I always found something to eat. Yes, the ice makers in the buffet were having some trouble working - one in particular. Yes, the cabin balcony is sort of small. Yes, the cruise is expensive. The staff on the ship was great...we didn't have any problems with staff. They were always nice and helpful. The only real problem I had on the ship is that they charged us for the mini bar drinks (which we had moved to a drawer below the fridge). We put our own drinks in the fridge. I told them at the desk and they were supposed to credit us $32...but it has not happened yet. I'll call them today. Also, we had a fire on the ship the first night - I slept through the alarm. Must not have been a huge deal because we didn't hear anything else about it. They yelled Bravo, bravo, bravo over intercom. I didn't hear it although my sister did in the next room. The power to the ship went out for an hour or so when we were leaving one of the ports. No frozen drinks, no food available, no lights, no pool, etc. We were happy when the blender could blend again. This was a fantastic way to see the 4 major islands. We rented cars and did our own thing on all of the islands. We had no problems with this. We did not do any NCL excursions. We saw so much and loved Hawaii. We stayed in Oahu for 3 nights after the cruise at the Hampton Inn in Kapolei. We had no problems with embarkation or disembarkation. 2 of our party did try to get off the ship early on our last day and the ship was a little late letting them off. (maybe 45 minutes). We were in cabins 10048, 10050 and 10055. Adults had the balcony cabins and the 4 kids shared the inside cabin. This worked really well. Loved having the starboard side cabin to watch the lava. We saw lava in the early morning (5am) on the way into Hilo and then the ship drove by the lava fissure when we left Hilo. We watched the napali coast from the port side deck as it was closest then went down to our cabin to watch as the ship turned around. We were a little further from the coast that way. I loved the balcony cabin. They are all small, and the balcony is small - but it was a treat to be able to sit out and watch things from there. Our balcony cabins were above the lifeboats and unobstructed. All the cabins were forward/starboard. The kids inside cabin was small but they fit fine in it. We ate in the buffet mostly just because it was quick. We ate once in the diner - it was good. We ate twice in the sit down place - not the Liberty (that is for people that dress up) but the other one. It was good also. None of the food was fabulous. Well, maybe the crepes...in the buffet. And the Lava cake in the sit down place - delicious. There was an ice cream station in the buffet also - we ate a lot of ice cream cones. We packed our lunches each day to take with us. This saved us a lot of money in port. Sometimes we would get the sandwiches at the nightly buffet and put them in baggies (we brought them) and store in our fridge. We packed a soft sided cooler for the trip. The buffet gladly filled our cooler with ice each day. Sometimes if we missed the late night buffet we would get bread, ham, cheese at the breakfast buffet and sit at a table and make our sandwiches. We would buy drinks in port for the day. Where ever we were we would have a picnic lunch. We learned that we could take one drink per person back on board the ship - so we always saved at least one to take back on. I have a coke zero problem and the ship has pepsi. We were also able to get beer back on the ship in Hilo and Kona. They do not x-ray there. We just stuffed them down in bags. One or two were taken. One day we got like 6 back on board (we had 8 people). They were not so concerned about cokes and waters... although I don't think you could take a bunch. They just don't want you taking beer/wine, etc on board. We bought 2 buckets of beer while on the ship (6 beers) for about $44 per bucket. We also had a favorite mango strawberry frozen drink on the ship that ended up being about $14. I think the daily special drink was about $10. We did not attend any shows as we stayed on the islands as long as possible - and then were exhausted by the time we ate and got cleaned up each night. The kids did go to a couple lei making parties and loved them. Everyone on the ship was very nice and helpful. My favorite things on the trip: swimming with the turtle at Hilo (Carlsmith beach), sunrise at Haleakala National Park, watching the lava from the ship. Also enjoyed Hanauma Bay (Oahu) and the tubing trip in Kauai. Fabulous vacation. I would love to do the cruise again someday. The sail by NaPali coast was so beautiful too. We were lucky and had a rainbow following - and saw a double rainbow. All 4 kids loved it too (ages 11, 13, 16, 18). We cliff jumped at Waimea Bay (Oahu) and we did a rope swing at Ho'opi' Falls in Kauai. The kids loved the snorkeling also. The teens were not as excited about getting up for the sunrise. The kids (and adults) loved the tubing trip in Kauai also. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
About us: We are two semi retired educators in our mid-60's who love to travel. We've logged 70,000+ miles on Amtrak and ViaRail Canada and have traveled the entire length of the Mississippi River on steamboats but had never ... Read More
About us: We are two semi retired educators in our mid-60's who love to travel. We've logged 70,000+ miles on Amtrak and ViaRail Canada and have traveled the entire length of the Mississippi River on steamboats but had never taken a cruise. This one had been on our bucket list for years, so we decided it was time to go for it! Overall we had a wonderful time! Given some of the reviews we read our expectations were not all that high, so I will say our experience exceeded our expectations (it's Hawaii for pete sake!). Like any experience there are pros and cons, and these are ours based on no prior experience or anything else to compare it to: Pre-Cruise-We stayed at the Waikiki Marriott the night before and it was fantastic! We had an ocean view room with a balcony that faced Diamond Head. There was a great poolside grill where we ate dinner (good food, reasonable drinks). It is literally steps from the beach (simply cross the street and you are there). There is a Norwegian check in desk in the lobby. The hotel staff was super and we got our information from the cruise desk regarding the time our shuttle to the ship would leave. You tag your luggage and leave it in the room and they pick it up for you. I only kept a tote with our travel docs and had them take everythng else. This went great! Had breakfast at the Starbucks in the lobby then hung out until our shuttle left. This process was easy and lots to enjoy. Recommend spending the night before you embark...otherwise you'll be grumpy. That good nights sleep did wonders for our disposition! EMBARKATION: Very smooth! A LOT of people needing to check in but the check in point was well staffed and all went smoothly. We went onto the ship and (against advice from other reviews) went to the Aloha for the buffet. Because we only had the small tote getting around was easy. We did not find the buffet overly chaotic. It was crowded but there was an ample variety of fresh food and choices to suit any taste. (more on food later). We ate our lunch then went to explore the ship. We found a deck outside of the Aloha and hung out until they called that our cabin was ready. We only had to kill about 2 hours and the cabin was ready sooner than we had expected! This process went very smoothly. Our luggage arrived quite soon after we got to our cabin and we unpacked and settled in. More about our cabin (with pictures) later. FOOD: Aloha (the buffet) was great the first day but lost some quality as the week went on. They had good breakfasts and a nice selection for lunch, but the two times we went for dinner it was less than stellar (the "country and western" night the food was awful). Main Dining Room (Skyline & Liberty). Food was fresh and well prepared. Husband thought the entrees were too skimpy (he wasn't entirely wrong). They had 6 or so entrees that stay the same and about 6-8 entrees that rotate. Overall I'd say it was O.K. but not remarkable. We had expected more based on our dining experiece on the steamboats. However, they do offer an afternoon snack and a late night snack which was nice...and there is soft serve vanilla and chocolate ice cream and it is GOOD! Cadallac Diner (open 24/7). Great place for breakfast, or late night snack. Because I'm an early riser I would go there about 5 a.m. with my travel coffee cup and fill it up then head for my balcony. This place is like a typical hamburger stand and it's good for what it is. We liked the atmosphere, but I would say some of the staff were not overly friendly here. Our overall impression of the food was "OK". We did not try any of the "pay extra" restaurants (we didn't feel we should have to pay extra considering the cost of this cruise) and I will say the food was the "lowpoint" on our experience scale. ONBOARD ENTERTAINMENT: We thought it was outstanding! We were super-pleased with the quality and variety. We went to all of the evening shows except the night we were at the Luau. One evening was a presentation with dance depicting Polynesian culture. Very well done and interesting! There was a professional magician and it was on par with what we've seen in Las Vegas. There were two evenings featuring production numbers; one called Lighs, Camera, Music that highlighted musicals and one that featured Las Vegas entertainment that was outstanding! The highlight for us, however, was the comedian Jeff Harms. OMG! This guy is the funniest man on the planet! We loved his show and we saw him again when he performed in the Marti Gras lounge. We also went to the Marti Gras for two "game show" nights and these were very entertaining and so much fun! There were other musical acts performing in various places that we heard as we walked about the ship. There were other activities throughout the day such Lei making (with nuts and with ribbons) and trivia. I did the trivia twice while husband did other things. One nice thing is there was almost always something to do if you didn't have a shore excursion, or you were finished with your shore excursion or if you and the hubby wanted to do different things. I'd give the activities an "A". SHORE EXCURSIONS: The opportunity to experience Hawaii is why a person would want to take this particular cruise so it is "port intensive" as it should be and I'd suggest doing something at every port. We booked all of our shore excursions through the cruise line and though they were slightly more expensive than we perhaps could have done on our own it was worth it to us to know that all would be taken care of. ***NOTE: Our cruise date was one of the ones that didn't dock at the Big Island at all because of the Volcano. This was hugely disappointing to us but certainly not in any way the fault of the cruise line...after all no one could have predicted a volcanic eruption! So, I am going to comment on how Norwegian handled this. I was on the Facebook feed with the Roll Call group for this sailing or I would not have known about the change of itinerary until I got on board. We had to cancel a car we had planned to rent in Kona and had I not known by then it would have been difficult to do. I do feel the cruise line should have sent out an email/text to everyone THE MINUTE the decision was made not to dock. To account for this we stayed in port at Honolulu and extra day, then after two days at the first port on Maui we went to the other side and did a tender port at Lahaina. This cause a lot of people to scramble to re-book their Sun./Mon. Maui excursions. I feel they should have left Honolulu (many folks had been there several days already or were planning to stay there post-cruise), kept the schedule for the Sun/Mon on Maui, then made Tuesday an "at sea" day then went to Lahaina on Wed. As it stood, we set in port and got cheated out of one day of our cruise. With no compensation. This did not sit well with us. However, even so, we made the best of it and did things on the ship. SHORE EXCURSION-PACIFIC WHALE WATCH MOLOKINI TURTLE SNORKEL. I did this one (hubby didn't). It was my favorite! The water was too choppy to go to Turtle Arches so we snorkeled the Molokini Crater for 2 hours. Oh my gosh! It was like swimming in an aquarium! Beautiful blue waters, huge variety of fish and so many! You can clearly see the coral. This is absolutely breathtaking! You get a light breakfast on the boat out, they have wet suit tops (you'll want this) for $10, free reef-safe sunscreen, flotation devices, and optic masks for the nearsighted (like me). That mask made all the difference in my experience. They are super helpful And it is a group dedicated to the conservation and preservation of ocean mammals and turtles. I would HIGHLY recommend this to anyone. BEST OF MAUI TOUR-We had been to Maui before but this tour gave us a little something different. We went to Iao Needle and our bus driver gave us tons of good information along the way. We then went to a plantation and took a trolly through it. This was OUTSTANDING. They had an unbelievable variety of crops for viewing and we learned about shucking and opening a cocount. Very informative and interesting! We then went to the Ocen Center. We had lunch (included) and then toured the exhibits. Super interesting and well worth the time to view it. I would recommend this tour. PLANTATION TRAIN AND LUAU KALAMAKU: We'd been to a luau before but found this one to have a very well done program. It told an historical story and the actors/performers were super! Really enjoyed the performance. The train ride around the grounds was OK as we saw the wild chickens and boars. The luau food was typical but well prepared and you get two drinks. This was more of a "performance" venue than an authentic venue but for us we really enjoyed it. THE DIRECTOR'S CUT TOUR: My husband's favorite! Get on Sam's bus, he is a wonderful host. You see clips of movies, then visit the location. This is so well done (at leaslt on Sam's bus) and interesting. A wonderful way to see Kauaii and experience a bit of movie history at the same time. I would recommend this. PEARL HARBOR:AND USS MISSOUR: Not what we expected. The tour was adequate but needed more time. We couldn't go onto the memorial and when the boat took us out the park ranger was gone and some young girl filled in, but she didn't know much. A bit disappointed in this one but did get to pay our respects. OVERALL: A wonderful way to explore Hawaii. Enjoyed the ship and all it had to offer. A great way for two people with varied interest to travel as we got to do some things together and also had the option to "do our own thing". A good variety of shore/ship activities and all well organized. The ship never seemed crowded, even at the pool/hot tub/decks. This cruise had an older crowd (it was before school let out) which was what we wanted. We were pleased, and would recommend this to everyone! LOVED IT! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
We chose this cruise because it would be our first time to Hawaii and we would visit 4 islands. Embarkment was very easy, it only took us approx. 15 minutes to board from the time we dropped our luggage to the time we boarded ship. They ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it would be our first time to Hawaii and we would visit 4 islands. Embarkment was very easy, it only took us approx. 15 minutes to board from the time we dropped our luggage to the time we boarded ship. They had the buffet ready so we could have lunch and hang out until our room was ready. I researched before taking our cruise so I was aware of the additional charges for drinks, service charges etc. All services had a 20% gratuity so no tip was added except in case of exceptional service. We did leave a tip in the two dinning rooms, Liberty and Skyline since there was no extra charges so no gratuity was added. Buffet was okay, Barbeque by pool was good but Skyline food was excellent. The difference in Liberty and Skyline was the dress code. The food was the same. Staff was friendly and courteous, each asking where we were from and are we enjoying our cruise. Our cabin was small but that was expected. Bathroom was quite small but we had good water pressure and plenty of hot water. There was entertainment every night, some which was good and some was very good. Loved the not so newlywed game. We did several excursions. One of our favorites was the Smith family luau. I booked this unit separate from NCL. The food was excellent, the ceremony of uncovering the pig and the actual show after dinner was very entertaining. Our only disappointment due to the volcano we did not get to dock at the big island so instead of visiting 4 islands we visited 3. Even though I was disappointed I applaud NCL of thinking of our safety Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
Hawaii Celebrity Solstice review April 29 - May 11, 2018 We had a enjoyable cruise despite some bumps along the road. We embarked in Honolulu. The lines were short but the woman we had checking us in just couldn't get it ... Read More
Hawaii Celebrity Solstice review April 29 - May 11, 2018 We had a enjoyable cruise despite some bumps along the road. We embarked in Honolulu. The lines were short but the woman we had checking us in just couldn't get it together. We stood waiting for her to check us in. It took 30 minutes. We were not happy with that but couldn't do anything about it. Finally, we got on board. They were giving out Champagne and mimosas as we boarded. The ship looked great. It shined and sparkled. The rooms were not ready yet. So we found some lunch and then found a comfortable place to wait. We had the Classic beverage package and enjoyed some drinks while waiting. We booked a handicapped accessible cabin on deck 11 Aqua class. I use a scooter to get around as I have muscular dystrophy. The cabin was barren as usual for handicapped cabins but did not have enough storage. We had only one closet and only 4 small drawers. The balcony had a lovely built in ramp to get out to the balcony. We had two chairs and loved having matching foot stools for each. We spent may hours out on that balcony. The door to our room was automatic which was wonderful for me. It is so hard to drive my scooter and open the door at the same time. I found the whole ship to be wonderfully accessible. All the doors were automatic all around the ship. I was able to get everywhere. Waiting on elevators after shows were awful. I would wait for my turn however able bodied people wouldn't let me get in the elevator. By the time I was able to get to elevator door it was full of able bodied people. I would have to wait and wait. Most of the time I would have to travel to the back of the ship just to find an elevator. Then had to travel back to the front of the ship where our cabin was. I would have loved to travel the stairs but my disability makes it impossible. We booked no excursions thru the ship. We booked them on shore. Much cheaper and just as good as ship excursions. Since we were in Aqua class we were able to eat in the Blu restaurant. It was open for breakfast and dinner each day. We went to breakfast there a few times, however, I like waffles and Blu didn't serve waffles at breakfast. The buffet did serve waffles so we preferred to eat there. The buffet was quicker too. The buffet food was delicious. Two lunches in the buffet they had fish and chips which were wonderful. We ate all our dinners in Blu. The food was good. The waiters were very nice and knowledgable about the menu and food. I liked having a cosmopolitan at dinner. After 3 days the wine waitress in Blu would recognize me and would always bring me my cosmopolitan with out me even having to ask. This made me feel so special. I went to all the shows. I was always entertained. My favorite shows are usually production shows but I found these productions shows to be lacking. I enjoyed all the game shows. The newly wed game and liar liar were hilarious. All the comedians were funny and clean. We experienced an earthquake in Hilo. We were on the ship at the time. The whole ship shook while we were at the pier. It was quite the adventure. Not for one man. I went down to guest relations to find a man yelling at the poor guest relations attendant. Earlier in the day he went on a ship excursion to the Volcano. He wanted a full refund. He couldn't understand how Celebrity would take passengers to a place that had earthquakes and that Celebrity should have known a earthquake was going to happen. I had to laugh. I don't even think all those specialists with all their expensive equipment knew that an earthquake was going to happen. I don't know if he got a refund or not. Getting a bar drink during the day was next to impossible. We would go to the pool bar to find one bartender trying to get drinks for 10 people in line. This was a daily thing. However, at the show room at night it was super easy to get a drink. The bar waiters were abundant. We had the classic drink package and liked it. The only drinks I couldn't get were at the martini bar. It worked for wine, beer and drinks of the day. I spent most of my money at the spa. I do not get the popularity of the Persian Garden. It was included in our Aqua class cabin. Lovely view but those tile chairs are hard and uncomfortable. I got two massages which were wonderful but expensive. I also got a facial. I was not told to buy this cream and that cream. No hard sell. Actually no sell at all. I really liked that. I also got my teeth whitened. It worked really well. I went 7 shades lighter. I was happy at the time but it sure doesn't last very long. I am now home and my teeth look the same as they did before the whitening. Next is the horrible problem we had in our cabin. Bugs. We found 7 in total. 3 we found in our bed. They were not bed bugs. I was told they got in thru our balcony. We did not leave our balcony doors open. Only when we went in and out. This really was a problem. I have been on over 27 cruises and I have never had bugs in my cabin before. Despite the bugs, and the earthquake we really enjoyed our Celebrity cruise and still believe that there is no such thing as a bad cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2017
I've only been on one other cruise before and it was Royal Caribbean or Princess (honestly can't remember) back in 2004 for my senior trip. We visited Cozumel, the Cayman Islands and Key West. It was a nice, 3-4 day trip but ... Read More
I've only been on one other cruise before and it was Royal Caribbean or Princess (honestly can't remember) back in 2004 for my senior trip. We visited Cozumel, the Cayman Islands and Key West. It was a nice, 3-4 day trip but nothing like our most recent cruise. NCL's Pride of America was a solid vacation, mainly because we finally met people our own age a few days in. PoA only has one area on the ship to smoke (the Waikiki Bar, deck 13, aft) and honestly it's the most laid back, chill area of the ship complete with great views. You end up talking to the "regulars" and we made a few legit friends that we kept in touch with after we got back home. The bartenders (Gabby and David) turned a good vacation into a great vacation and kept my husband and I sane on a boat (erm ship) where our age group made up maybe 20% of the population. They recommended some local bars to hit when we were in port overnight and they did not disappoint. The cruise director, Jasper, was also extremely nice and just an overall fantastic person. NCL's staff was the best part of this trip, hands down. It is extremely regimented like a well oiled machine and they were some of the nicest, most down-to-earth people we met. The ports were well planned out and although we only had one full day of sun, we made the best of every day we had. We went hiking, visited the Keck Observatory, hit some botanical gardens and enjoyed a few local breweries. The ship itself was small compared to other ones I've seen/been on but you wouldn't be able to tell unless you're the person who spends most of their money on the ship doing ship things. My only real complaint is that NCL's Pride of America doesn't allow you to purchase any photos their photographers take on board after your cruise has ended. So basically...unless you remember to hit Guest Services on your way out, you're kinda screwed. I did not find this out until after we got home. Bummer. All things considered I'd give it an 7.5/8 outta 10. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
We chose this cruise because although we have cruised here three times previously it is an area which we find very picturesque and we like the Hawaiian dancing. The ship appeared to have had a refit since our last sailing on her. The ... Read More
We chose this cruise because although we have cruised here three times previously it is an area which we find very picturesque and we like the Hawaiian dancing. The ship appeared to have had a refit since our last sailing on her. The cabin was very nice and we could not fault the cleanliness of all areas of the vessel. We were impressed with the very large dining room, we were on freedom dining and whatever time we seemed to go for dinner we were always able to get a table. In fact we were able to choose to have the same table each evening so of course kept the same waiters which was very nice. We chose to eat in the large cafeteria for breakfast and lunch. We had read reviews from people before going and they were complaining about the food being cold before they found a table but we always seemed to find a table and could not complain about the temperature or quality of the food. The staff were extremely pleasant, always had a smile and a chat. The food was very good both in the self service and the dining room. There was a very big choice for each dinner and also lunch. Well presented, hot and nicely cooked. We have no complaints concerning the good. There were lots of activities on board and they were well attended. Unfortunately the weather was abysmal so deck activities were really out of the question on most days. The entertainment staff worked hard to keep passengers entertained. The shows in the evening were very good. We particularly enjoyed a party of local people who came on board and entertained us with beautiful dances and activities. The ships dancers and singers were really good too. Although the weather was bad, we enjoyed our cruise. We had good service throughout our time on the ship and would certainly recommend it to anyone wanting to explore this area. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2017
We chose this cruise because we like to cruise and this is the only 7 day cruise available in Hawaii. First time in almost 15 cruises that we had to carry our own luggage through the terminal to the conveyor belt for loading on the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we like to cruise and this is the only 7 day cruise available in Hawaii. First time in almost 15 cruises that we had to carry our own luggage through the terminal to the conveyor belt for loading on the ship. The policy of not allowing you to carry a bottle of water on the ship is ridiculous, I understand the no liquor, but water I do not understand. Overall the ship is in good condition. Our balcony cabin was what we expected and there was adequate storage in the cabin. We finally meet our cabin steward on Thursday, but there was not a time that we needed him so we were fine. We ate our breakfast in the Aloha Cafe, buffet each morning and we always found the selection had something we wanted. Probably the best item was the made to order omelet station. They definitely need more than one person preparing omelettes. The wait some times was at least 15 minutes or more. I carried ziploc bags and a soft sided cooler so that I could prepare sandwiches from the buffet that we carried with us on three of the days. I asked for mayonnaise from one of the attendants and only one time did one told me they did not have any. Our evening meals were in the two main dining rooms except for one night we ate at the buffet. We are not gourmet diners but we both felt the food was just average or a little below. Only one night were we ever offered any wine or asked if we wanted to see a wine list. This is a very port intense cruise so most evenings after dinner we were tired and went to our cabin to relax. We did see both of the shows of the comedian, he was very good, but trying to get seating in the Mardi Gras theater is awful...not set up for maximum seating...we also saw the tribute to the Eagles...we enjoyed the music...We rented cars at every port but Kona where we booked the snorkel trip because of the need of a tender time. It was a good trip with a friendly fun crew. We enjoyed our cruise and this is a good way to get a taste of several of the Hawaiian Islands. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2017
We chose this cruise to celebrate our 50th Wedding Anniversary in the Hawaiian Islands. It was a very busy cruise but an excellent way to see the different Islands. We really enjoyed all the excursions, but the majority I booked before ... Read More
We chose this cruise to celebrate our 50th Wedding Anniversary in the Hawaiian Islands. It was a very busy cruise but an excellent way to see the different Islands. We really enjoyed all the excursions, but the majority I booked before hand with local tour companies and was very pleased with the results. The crew members for the most part were always cheerful, polite and very helpful. Two things stand out that I was disappointed with. One was the size of the alcoholic drinks. The drinks are very expensive to begin with and cut down at lease half in size compared to the last cruise we were on. I admit it was a few years ago....maybe 10, but still it was very noticeable. To make things worse, the plastic glasses were filled with ice each time, making the volume even less. The second incident that disappointed me was at that after the final entertainment show in the Hollywood theatre (which was excellent) the cruise director gave a lovely presentation and called many of the staff up on the stage for us to show our appreciation and for them to give theirs as well. It was a wonderful event, but what tainted it for me, being a non American citizen was the flag waving...2 at the beginning and 2 at the end during the procession of the crew members. It seemed to me that many of the hard working staff were of other nationalities and this big display of American nationalism didn't take that into account. I'm sure the American cruisers found it very patriotic though. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2017
This was the 48th state we have visited. and we figured that this was the best way to experience. Hawaii. We have sailed three times before with NCL and our experiences have been excellent. The stateroom with balcony was very good. The ... Read More
This was the 48th state we have visited. and we figured that this was the best way to experience. Hawaii. We have sailed three times before with NCL and our experiences have been excellent. The stateroom with balcony was very good. The cabin staff fair. The food in the specialty restaurants is very good and the price is right. The service staff well trained and experienced, but not as good as the staff on other non-US based ships.The breakfast buffet was very good in the Aloha cafe. We did not have any other meals buffet style, but a walk trough gave the impression of "nothing special. The shore excursions are a good way to experience the sights of the islands. With a few exceptions the excursion guides were very good. Don't miss the excursion the lava fields. You need to be able to walk at least 5 miles in hot and humid weather, and walk on very uneven surface for about 1 mile. You need to bring lots of water. Which goes for all excursions. Overall this was a very good cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2017
Our very first cruise was 30 years ago for our 20th anniversary on the Norway out of Miami so this is another NCL ship for our 50th. We thought this would be the best way to see Hawaii. No packing and unpacking and no small planes to ... Read More
Our very first cruise was 30 years ago for our 20th anniversary on the Norway out of Miami so this is another NCL ship for our 50th. We thought this would be the best way to see Hawaii. No packing and unpacking and no small planes to island hop. Booked all our excursions thru NCL before we left. Traveled with another couple so we printed out the details on the excursions in each port and discusses and decided which we wanted to do. Our favorite was the Deluxe Road to Hana, was a 9 passenger van so it was personal, was expensive but would recommend and do it again. It was a 7 plus hours tour. Wonderful driver stopped as offen as he could for pictures. Pearl Harbor isn't to be missed, makes you proud to be an American. This is our 5th cruise and was a little disappointed overall. Food and service was OK but not exceptional. Most of the food in the "free" venues was warm, never had anything really hot. Everyone in our party commented on this. Specially restaurants were good and service was very good. Didn't like the fact that there wasn't a beverage package, heard others commenting on this at the bars and around the pool deck. Overall we had a good time and glad we went this way but wouldn't do it again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
Had cruised with them before. Also only company doing the islands . Very impressed with ships facilities, cabins ( we had a large balcony 7th level fwd Portside) and staff - all very personable and obliging - nothing too much trouble. ... Read More
Had cruised with them before. Also only company doing the islands . Very impressed with ships facilities, cabins ( we had a large balcony 7th level fwd Portside) and staff - all very personable and obliging - nothing too much trouble. Dined in the Skyline restaurant for breakfast and dinner - excellent service and food. Did not try the speciality restaurants as were heavily booked out unless you wanted to dine very early. Entertainment was excellent - varied and very professional. Overall would highly recommend this cruise for all ages. Shore excursions were varied and catered for all needs. The ship caters for 2600 passengers and I believe it was full this voyage. Despite the numbers it did not fill crowded. Found the boarding and disembarkation process very easy - just ensure you have all your documents/tags printed off before hand. Security is very tight and they are very strict with the no liquid policy of any sort. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
It was the one available to cruise the Islands. The entertainment was very good and enjoyable. The cabin was excellent and the cabin steward was terrific. the service in the restaurant was good as was the food. Sometimes we wait a bit ... Read More
It was the one available to cruise the Islands. The entertainment was very good and enjoyable. The cabin was excellent and the cabin steward was terrific. the service in the restaurant was good as was the food. Sometimes we wait a bit longer than we should have for service, but most of the time it was very good. The ship itself was very nice and food choices were great. Did not do any shore excursions, we mostly did our own thing. We found the overall experience very relaxing and the time spent at each port was sufficient. Since we traveled by ourselves we had the pleasure of meeting and interacting with other families. I loved the 'open dining' concept. It allowed us to eat when and wherever we wanted to. Our favorite places were the Aloha room, Cadillac room and the Key West Bar. I did think the pools were a bit small for that size of ship, but overall it was fine. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
My husband and I have just returned from cruising the Hawaiian Islands. We did this cruise 17 years ago and were eager to repeat it. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. The ship is well appointed though our balcony cabin ... Read More
My husband and I have just returned from cruising the Hawaiian Islands. We did this cruise 17 years ago and were eager to repeat it. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. The ship is well appointed though our balcony cabin was small though there was adequate storage space. There was a cross section of ages on board. Quite a lot of children and youngsters as it was during the summer break. The Liberty dining room has a wonderful 'colonial' feel to it. There are plenty of tables for two and we never waited too long to be seated. The menu offers enough choice but there was no 'gala' dinner or lobster night. We had lunch at the Skyline restaurant when we boarded and breakfast the, next morning. It has the same menu as the Liberty, no evening dress code and a 3 star feel to it. The Cadillac diner is a good choice for breakfast which we discovered halfway through the week - quiet, relaxed without the bustle of the Aloha cafe. We used the Aloha for lunch each day. It was busy but you could always find a table. The service in the dining rooms and the diner was good. The staff throughout the ship were helpful and happy. They pride themselves on providing a 'family' atmosphere and do succeed. The captain is approachable and visual - around the ship. The entertainment was excellent - good production shows, entertainers and choice of music venues each evening. We did not participate in any of the activities. It is a busy cruise as the ship is in port every day. We did not use the ship's excursions which are very expensive as usual. I would recommend car hire if there are more than two people travelling together. The islands are so beautiful and the people so welcoming. Aloha! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We were a pretty unusual demographic on this cruise-parents traveling with two "adult"(20 &23) children. The dominant demographic was by far was retired folks from 70-90 years of age (about 70%) from ALL over the world. Very ... Read More
We were a pretty unusual demographic on this cruise-parents traveling with two "adult"(20 &23) children. The dominant demographic was by far was retired folks from 70-90 years of age (about 70%) from ALL over the world. Very few children/teens in evidence but this might change somewhat in June-August. We were on board in middle May when school is still in session at many locations. A handful of young couples rounded out the passenger list. The ship is clean and nice-appears to be recently remodeled. As it never really leaves US waters, there is no Casino. The extra space has been used to populate the ship with "added charge" restaurants of all types. They were pretty pricey so we stuck with the regular dining rooms and the excellent buffet area. The food/service in the Dining Rooms seemed to be downgraded a bit due to the proliferation of other, more expensive, restaurant choices and the free choice system on NCL boats. I am ambivalent about this system overall. I really like the ability to eat at any time and sit with my family, but I feel the experience has lost something since there is little in the way of dress code (I'm no dandy to be sure but shorts and flip flops are apparently OK-and one tank top clad fellow even carried in his "Bucket o' Beer" from the pool area) you never meet anyone and you rarely have the same waiter twice. The menu was certainly less impressive than many other cruises I have been on but it was still quite good. The service was OK but not super. The buffet area was very good. A bit of a fishy smell was noticeable at first in the halls but quickly dissipated as we left port. We had an Inside Cabin with the Murphy Bunks and it worked well for us even with our big kids. Big luggage easily fit under the lower beds and the closet was plenty big for our hanging stuff. Lots of drawers,shelves and hooks allowed us to stay somewhat organized. Shows were pretty good. we caught two and liked them both. This is certainly NOT a "party boat",not that the crew didn't try,but the demographics of the passenger list (elderly and often non-english speaking) pretty much killed any even moderately rowdy celebrating that was attempted. Don't miss the Lei making classes if you are the least bit crafty as it is awesome to be able to sport your own, handmade ribbon/orchid Lei around the ship. They have an accomplished professional photographer on board that did some excellent family photos for us on the beach at Kona. They certainly were not cheap (professional outdoor shoots never are) but they came out very nice. If you haven't done any family photos in a while this is a great opportunity to get some done in a great exotic setting. Any cruise is a good time to be "on the wagon" and avoid adult beverages as they are very expensive, but this is pretty much standard on every cruise so no foul here. Where this cruise really shines is the Ports of Call. Generous time allowed at all four major Islands allowed us to do lots of cool things all day and retreat to our floating Hotel every night for a nice meal and a clean,comfortable bed. The two day stops at Maui and Kauai allowed us time to rent a car and really see some sights. Renting a car is easy and cheap in Hawaii (while Cabs are notoriously expensive here) and they pick you up, and bring you back, right at the ship. The only downside is that the Cruise Line has made no provision at all for parking at the pier. Had to hunt up a spot on the street in the somewhat industrial port area at both islands which was worrisome to say the least-but no problems/tickets/vandalism were experienced. Great expanses of empty paved lots all around the ship made it even harder to understand. NCL and the rental car people really need to work something out here. Having the car made using less crowded excursion choices very easy, so we did not book any tours from NCL. Overall we had a great trip. The service was more than adequate, the food was good to very good without having to resort to the added cost restaurants, Our pretty basic cabin was nice and the crew seemed quite happy to be working there. And it is Hawaii so you cant go wrong! Read Less

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