Sail Date: August 2019
Before boarding, we spent several days in Alaska on our own. The day we boarded, we traveled from Anchorage to Seward via the Coastal Classic route on the Alaska Railroad. Although we booked independently from NCL, they still checked our ... Read More
Before boarding, we spent several days in Alaska on our own. The day we boarded, we traveled from Anchorage to Seward via the Coastal Classic route on the Alaska Railroad. Although we booked independently from NCL, they still checked our bags straight through from Anchorage, and they were waiting for us in our cabin when we boarded! The Coastal Classic train 100% surpassed expectations, it was absolutely breathtaking! Once in Seward, we boarded an independently booked excursion through Major Marine Tours, the 6 hour Kenai Fjords tour. Again, absolutely exceeded our expectations, it was fantastic! So many marine creatures that we saw: otters, sea lions, seals, whales, eagles, puffins... And Aialik Glacier was awe-inspiring. The blue ice was so vivid, and in the smaller boat we were able to get much closer than the cruise ship could get, so we could easily hear the sonic boom when it calved! Embarkation went very smoothly, we were through the line and on the ship in probably 10-15 minutes. We missed the main muster drill because we were still on our excursion, so we attended the make-up drill just before sailaway. The dining was typical, no complaints, but the only really memorable meals were at the specialty restaurants (we ate at Cagneys, La Cucina, and Moderno this cruise). We had the social media internet package, and it worked well for Facebook, texts, Instagram, Twitter, etc, but I was surprised that it wouldn't let me update my Wordpress blog. No complaints on speed, it worked reasonably well. The entertainment was generally excellent, especially the shows. Velvet was interesting, although I wouldn't have paid an upcharge for it like I think is happening on other ships. Vlad and Anna, the acrobats, were absolutely fantastic, both in their own show and in the Cirque Bijou show the last night. We found the comedian on this cruise, Larry Omaha, highly entertaining as well. My only criticism for the cruise director's staff would be the scheduling of activities - inexplicably, while we were in port, there were a bunch of activities scheduled (including our personal favorite, trivia), but on the sea days, there seemed to actually be fewer activities scheduled, which seems odd. Not the end of the world as I'm perfectly capable of entertaining myself on sea days, even in Alaska, but it was a bit weird. Service was fantastic, absolutely no complaints. Every crew member we encountered was friendly and helpful. The ports were a bit more hit or miss in my opinion. Seward was great, as previously stated. The next port was Icy Strait Point, which was not a favorite. With the Joy in port at the same time, it was very crowded, and everything seemed even more overpriced than the rest of Alaska. We attended the In Alaska's Wildest Kitchen excursion through NCL, and it was interesting, but not nearly worth what it cost in my opinion. We then walked the Memorial Trail into Hoonah, where we had been told we could catch the shuttle back one-way. First of all, there's basically nothing of interest in Hoonah, or if there was, it certainly wasn't obvious. Secondly, the shuttle system was a big cluster. TWICE, we had a shuttle appear only to be informed moments later that she couldn't take us after all, as she had to pick up customers at the airport. We waited a good 20+ minutes for a shuttle, in a long line, and then two more showed up immediately after. We heard of others waiting 45 minutes or more. In addition, the shuttle pickup was not marked. At all. We just saw a bunch of people heading that way (I assume from where they'd been dropped off), and followed. Next stop was Juneau, where we rented a car at the nearby Avis rental and drove to Mendenhall Glacier. You can't get very close to the glacier without an excursion directly to it, we found, but we were able to see it, and to hike the area, including Nugget Falls, and the salmon ladder, where black bears were evident. The Visitor Center was interesting, but couldn't occupy one for more than 30 minutes. We drove back to Juneau and stopped at the Juneau city museum, which was interesting - probably a 30-45 minute stop. We then headed back for a 1pm all-aboard so we could go to Dawes Glacier on the ship that afternoon. Both Hubbard and Dawes were nice, but not comparable to the experience we had getting close up to Aialik. Next port was Skagway, where we booked the White Pass and Yukon train through Chilkoot Charters. Very professional and well done, the train ride is very scenic as well as interesting to hear the narration of the history of the area. We then boarded a bus that headed further into the Yukon territory, including lunch near Carcross and several photo stops. Our driver, Jennie, was great, very informative as well as entertaining. I had managed to injure my leg that morning running back to the ship to get our passports, so we weren't able to do any real exploring in Skagway, unfortunately. In Ketchikan, we had booked a Black Bear tour through Kiwanti Adventures, and definitely saw the bears. Of course, so did a lot of people who paid a lot less for a rainforest tour, as well as some that may have just happened to be in the parking lot at the right time. That said, we were much closer to the bear and probably got much better photos. If seeing a black bear is important, it's a good tour to book! We disembarked in Vancouver, and did the Vancouver City Highlights tour through LandSea Adventures. In retrospect, we should have booked their Vancouver Delights tour instead, as it has very high ratings, but it's a longer tour and would have started to make me nervous about getting to the airport in time. In any case, the City Highlights tour was good, we got to see a lot of the City, including Granville Island, Stanley Park, and the English Bay area. Our driver, Ira, was very informative and entertaining as well. Overall, we will definitely be back, although may try to mix things up with some different ports if possible! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
How often can you say that you had a vacation with almost no complaints? This was my first cruise, as well as my first time in Alaska. I couldn't have imagined a better experience! My friend and I arrived in Vancouver a few days ... Read More
How often can you say that you had a vacation with almost no complaints? This was my first cruise, as well as my first time in Alaska. I couldn't have imagined a better experience! My friend and I arrived in Vancouver a few days early to check out the city, and I'm glad we did. Beautiful city with something for everyone. The cruise itself? The embarkation was the only not-so-great experience (standing in line for 1+ hours in any situation is not fun, let alone to check in for your cruise). We made the mistake of not eating lunch, figuring we would eat on the ship, only to arrive on the ship just as food venues were closing for the emergency drill, so we were more than a bit hangry. Lesson learned, and moving forward. The staff on the ship was so, so amazing at each and every turn. Everyone from the general manager to the stewards to the dining staff was pleasant and efficient. The ship was very clean and constantly being improved with touch-up paint here or oiling a hinge there. The food was good, especially in the main dining rooms (Azura was amazing!), with a good selection all-around. I can't speak to the specialty restaurants, but we tried out all of the complimentary venues and had good experiences with all. We enjoyed walking laps around the promenade deck or jogging track up top to catch the beautiful views and enjoy that amazing, fresh air. Cruising Glacier Bay National Park while listening to the ranger's commentary was certainly a highlight. We chose some really wonderful shore excursions (whale watching, rainforest island adventure, musher/sled dog camp) and honestly felt like each shuttle driver and tour guide was the best one they had. Entertainment and activities on the ship were high-quality and varied; again, with something for everyone. If you were bored--which we weren't--it was your own fault. We loved listening to the musicians at the lounges and atrium, and the main theatre shows were great (Anna and Vlad were wonderful and Cirque Bijou on the last night was AMAZING!). I think I'm at the point of gushing now so I'll stop, but I really can't say enough good about this experience. I HIGHLY recommend this cruise and will definitely cruise with Norwegian again. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
Always wanted to travel to Alaska and thought a cruise would be a great way to go. Our travel agent recommended NCL and we had heard good things about the cruise line. All in all we had a great time but it was a rocky start to the cruise. ... Read More
Always wanted to travel to Alaska and thought a cruise would be a great way to go. Our travel agent recommended NCL and we had heard good things about the cruise line. All in all we had a great time but it was a rocky start to the cruise. On the 1st day after we boarded the ship we went to OSheans for lunch. We waited 45 minutes for our food to arrive and it was all served to us at the same.. the drinks, appetizers, entree and dessert. You can imagine how frustrated we were after waiting 45 minutes. All of our hot dishes were cold and by the time we were served we needed to leave as the ship was about to sail. Not a great start. Then the same night in the main dining room (Tzars Palace) we had an extremely inexperienced waiter who was neither competent or friendly. Very disappointed that the dining room supervisor or manager didn’t come by to see how we were doing. The next 2 nights we dined at the specialty restaurants and they were delicious and the staff was amazing. We ate at Cagney's and Le Bistro. The wait staff was more than wonderful and went out of their way to please us. It was our anniversary when we ate at Le Bistro and they brought out a cake to our table for our whole party of 5. We did try the Main dining room the next night and it was much better. For breakfasts and lunches we split between the main dining room and the buffet. The cabin was very nice and spacious. We were in a mini suite with a balcony. Had a few maintenance issues but they were quickly resolved. The entertainment on board was very good. The first night could have been more than just a taste of what entertainers were going to do during the cruise but the shows were excellent (except for the comedian). The ship captain was wonderful when we arrived the 2 Glacier sites. He was able to get us up close to the glaciers and turned the ship 360 degrees so that all on board could get a great view. Had a good experience with the internet on the ship although there is an additional charge. The ports and excursions were fine. We enjoyed the 3 ports that we visited. We also extended our stay in Alaska with a land tour to Denali. The tour guide was just ok and the itinerary could have been tightened up a bit as there was a lot of on your own time. Also all meals were on your own. The hotels we stayed at were also top notch. Also too many consecutive days on the bus for long periods of time. But the places we visited were beautiful and Denali is not to be missed! Wish we could have had more time in certain spots and omitted other stops that were useless. That being said it was a wonderful experience and I recommend it to anyone who loves nature and the great outdoors. By the way our weather could not have been more beautiful. We were very fortunate to have only 1 day of rain during our 12 day cruise tour. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
Norwegian cruise was a smooth sail for us all. The checkin/checkout process was very well organized compared to any other cruise we have done so far. The range of restaurants and variety of food this ship offered was amazing. Housekeeping ... Read More
Norwegian cruise was a smooth sail for us all. The checkin/checkout process was very well organized compared to any other cruise we have done so far. The range of restaurants and variety of food this ship offered was amazing. Housekeeping was great. At the sea entertainment had things for all ages. Dance party was great!! Service was exceptional. We really enjoyed our cruising experience. The ports were perfect and so was the weather for us!! Beverage package is worth it only if you have 2 or more drinks per day, otherwise you could just purchase drinks on the go. Speciality dining was good, we enjoyed the food and ambience in La Cucina. We were a little disappointed with the Teppanyaki restaurant, the portion sizes were huge and lot of food was wasted. The photo package could definitely be improved, the current package has no savings per se, as the individual photos are cheaper than the package. Overall, we had a great cruising experience. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
The Jewel crew originated mostly from southeast Asia. That means the pizza on board tasted terrible but the Malaysian and Indian food was the best I ever had. I gained 10 pounds. My wife gained 7 pounds. Our 1 year old daughter gained 2 ... Read More
The Jewel crew originated mostly from southeast Asia. That means the pizza on board tasted terrible but the Malaysian and Indian food was the best I ever had. I gained 10 pounds. My wife gained 7 pounds. Our 1 year old daughter gained 2 pounds. We got off the ship fat and happy. I really appreciated the Guppies playroom. My daughter and I were there at least 4 hours a day on Sea days. They have interactive programs and tons of toys to keep my daughter entertained. A few tips regarding the Jewel: -Teppanyaki is the most popular option on board. You must book a reservation 3 months before your sailing date. -Grab a seat for shows 30 minutes before showtime. Evening entertainment is very popular. -Book a shore excursion with less people. I went dog sledding in the afternoon instead of the morning, which was the less popular time slot. Everybody in my group got lots of cuddle time with their own puppy! -Juice is only served in the mornings. The rest of the day, their beverage stations serve flavored water. Fill a container in the morning and store in your mini fridge Vancouver cruise terminal is horribly inefficient. Long lines and grumpy workers ruined our embarkation day. Our cabin filled with cigarette smoke on the 5th day. The staff did their best to remove the smell but I wish they could have thrown all the smokers overboard instead. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We just finished a northbound Alaska cruise from Vancouver to Seward. This is our second NCL cruise in less than 12 months and we continue to be impressed with the level of service. We always buy the specialty dining packages and they are ... Read More
We just finished a northbound Alaska cruise from Vancouver to Seward. This is our second NCL cruise in less than 12 months and we continue to be impressed with the level of service. We always buy the specialty dining packages and they are very reasonable for the quality of the food. The promotion packages are also part of the reason we book early as they are a good deal... just beware you pay tax on them even though they are “ free” ( the cost of tax of the premium beverage package can be a bit spendy) as Latitude members we got to board in the priority line this time and it really made a difference. The suites get you access to breakfast and lunch in Moderno restaurant (exclusive to suites and Haven guests) which was nice as I really dislike the chaos of the buffet! The crew was amazing as always, and one of the reasons we have chosen to sail exclusively with NCL. We already have our next cruise ( Panama Canal) boooked on NCL! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
We wanted a one way Alaskan cruise and this cruise was most suitable for our dates and timing. Cabin was clean and nice. Our cabin attendant was good and did a great job throughout our journey. This cruise had a good entertainment and ... Read More
We wanted a one way Alaskan cruise and this cruise was most suitable for our dates and timing. Cabin was clean and nice. Our cabin attendant was good and did a great job throughout our journey. This cruise had a good entertainment and activities too. We enjoyed all the shows. Hats off to the hard working Housekeeping and restaurant staff. We booked few excursions through ship and it went well. We could not do much at Juneau port due to not so good weather. This cruise had excellent itinerary. We covered nice ports, beautiful glaciers and some great food at shores/ports too. We are not so pleased with the quality and taste of the food at complimentary restaurants. It’s really very disappointing to see Indian food tastes below average when the cruise had Head Chef and F&B manager from India. This is a shame! Overall we had a good time. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruise as a family cruise. My self, wife , son, 2 grandkids and my 92 tear old mother. Cabin: Our cabin was 9545 and is the worst cabin by far that I have had on any cruise. Your could here the toilet flush in the ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a family cruise. My self, wife , son, 2 grandkids and my 92 tear old mother. Cabin: Our cabin was 9545 and is the worst cabin by far that I have had on any cruise. Your could here the toilet flush in the rooms around us. I don't know if there was a crew walk way, the other side of the wall at the back of the stateroom, Often through out the night we would get a loud rumbling sound that sounded like a loud clap of thunder. The hose to our shower was leaking where it was connected to the shower head. Cabin steward was notified the second day of the cruise. It was still leaking at the end of the cruise. Room was clean and made up good everyday. Dinning: Main dinning Hall: We had 2 dinner and a breakfast in the main dinning hall. The breakfast was wonderful. Eggs, waffles hash browns and corn beef hash. First dinner nothing memorable. I can't even remember what I had. The second meal I had seafood pasta. I didn't finish the dish. Chin Chin was nothing=g more than the middle of the road Chinese. I had the Orange Beef. Buffet: We had most meals their. The menu pretty much didn't change. I know the mixed berries were not fresh but frozen. I had chunks that hadn't thawed yet in my dish. I suspect that the pastries were frozen also. Over all just buffet food. I have been on 3 Royal Caribbean cruises, 2 Carnival cruises and 2 American Steamship cruises and the food by far would rank at the bottom. Crew: The crew was very friendly and extremely helpful to us. Especially my 92 year old mother. Entertainment and Activities: We did not attend the Stardust shows but the entertainment in the bars was real good. As far as activities go, I felt they were lacking on sea days compared to past cruises. Shore excursions: We went on 2 and they were both great. Juneau we went on one of the mushing trips. It was very interesting and the scenery was beautiful. Skagway we booked the railroad and gold panning excursion. It was well worth the price. Cruise was northbound July 15 Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Avoid cabin 8560, which is right above the Bliss nightclub. The music is so loud you could feel the bass throb through the cabin floor. If the ship is full, they cannot move you. The Bliss is a main entertainment venue and they will stop ... Read More
Avoid cabin 8560, which is right above the Bliss nightclub. The music is so loud you could feel the bass throb through the cabin floor. If the ship is full, they cannot move you. The Bliss is a main entertainment venue and they will stop playing until midnight. The food choices except for the Garden Cafe and the poolside buffet cost more money. The food in Teppanyaki and Le Bistro is very salty. The spa has competent staff. There is a cardroom and Library for quieter pursuits, but if someone is smoking on the deck above them, there is a trace of smoke that comes thru the ventilation systems. There was some confusion of how the beds should be placed in our cabin. We preferred the beds to be separated to create a center aisle. It made it easier to maneuver in the very tiny cabin. We requested the change which they obliged, then four hours later returned the beds to the original configuration. All very confusing! When we advised the Guest services we would be disembarking in Ketchikan, they were gracious and returned our fees for the spa and shore excursions. When they say partially obstructed view, they mean mostly obstructed. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
This trip... our second to Alaska, we decided to expand our horizons & visit Denali National Park! All I can say is the entire experience was amazing... we learned more than we expected & Alex, the tour guide was awesome! The ... Read More
This trip... our second to Alaska, we decided to expand our horizons & visit Denali National Park! All I can say is the entire experience was amazing... we learned more than we expected & Alex, the tour guide was awesome! The train was comfy ... the bus was great & each and every step along the way - we were given expectations - what the rooms would be like (some had no ac), when to have luggage ready, where to be when & every little detail! The entire land portion was fun, exciting, a learning experience, fun and extremely well organized! We opted for the Denali portion first so we could unpack & stay put once we got on the Jewel --- worked perfectly! Now the Jewel ... the renovations are beautiful & very stately ... all of the somewhat gaudy decor has been replace and the entire ship is BEAUTIFUL! We love the new look and NCL has lots to be proud of... that for sure! We always book a suite & love the extra attention to our needs and this was no difference ... our concierge, Butler & steward were amazing ... we loved them all! They took care of our every single need ... even a blanket for sitting out on the deck when the glacier viewing was chilly! Weather was warm for many of the days and I'm delighted we had been watching the weather... who would think we would go to Alaska & get tan sitting on our forward deck? Amazing! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this ship because my husband and my daughters did the same trip six years ago. They were very happy about the trip. There was nothing similar. I want to start with airport to cruise ship transfer. We booked it previously and ... Read More
We chose this ship because my husband and my daughters did the same trip six years ago. They were very happy about the trip. There was nothing similar. I want to start with airport to cruise ship transfer. We booked it previously and it looked very convenient. At the airport they took all our luggages and we were told they would have delivered luggages directly to our room. We embarked at 1pm. Around 6 pm when there was no luggage called the guest service. They told us very rudely luggage would be delivered until 9 pm. We didn't have any appropriate clothes for dining rooms. We were told we can eat at other open buffet. Luggages came at 8.30pm. Food was horrible. Same type of food every day. Chef had a strange taste. Everything including deserts had sweet and spicy together. In restaurants there was not a special theme any day. We never ate this kind of tasteless food in anywhere. I only give you an example to make everyone understand food quality. We ordered brownie with ice cream in our last night at the restaurant. There came regular cake with raisins with ice cream!!! It wasn't even brown!! For tea, coffee and water you have to go certain areas. In only deck 12. Not a single convenient place when you use the sun deck or other quiet places. Is there any housekeeping? They came only once a day. They brought enough towels sometimes, they forgot to pick up used glasses or dishes. They left lotion only once during seven day trip. I sailed Norwegian and other cruise lines before. Housekeeping was always incredible. Whenever we left the room they were in the room to clean. It was always spotless. In this trip it was just disappointment. Guest service was so rude. They were ordering us what to do not to try help. The best thing in the ship was shows. The team were amazing.We had good memories with them to remember. I will never sail again with Norwegian. I will never advice this ship to anyone as well. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We have sailed with NCL in the past and we picked this cruise because we liked the itinerary of the land and cruise. The land part was very fast paced with early days and a lot of time on buses. We liked that we got to see so much of ... Read More
We have sailed with NCL in the past and we picked this cruise because we liked the itinerary of the land and cruise. The land part was very fast paced with early days and a lot of time on buses. We liked that we got to see so much of Alaska and our tour guide Madonna and bus driver Steve were very knowledgeable and enthusiastic. We spent the first day in Fairbanks and the first morning at Susan Butcher's Trail Break Kennels. She won the 1986, 1987, 1988 and 1990 Iditarod. Even though she passed away a few years ago, her husband and daughters continue on the tradition. We learned a lot about the history of dog mushing and got to see the dogs first hand. They are all so happy. The highlight was getting to hold the puppies. We then went on to see the Alaskan Pipeline and panned for gold. We chose the optional River Boat Cruise in the afternoon which was also fun and informative. We saw a replica of a Native Alaskan village and it was great to see all of the culture of Alaska. We also saw another presentation for the Trail Break Kennels. We got in to Fairbanks a day early and we stayed at the Rivers Edge Resort.They have a bunch of nice cabins on the river. The restaurant attached is the best in Fairbanks and it was really good! Day 2 was a train ride to Denali National Park. The train was very nice and we had an optional breakfast on board. We then took a bus tour in to the Park. We were on the bus for about 8 hours total but we saw lots of wildlife and tour guide was very informative. He stopped anytime we saw wildlife. We had multiple rest stops and we were able to see Denali (Mt McKinley) which was so beautiful. We stayed at the Grand Denali Resrt. Beautiful views overlooking the river. The restaurant was really good as well. Try the salmon cakes! Day 3 was another train ride to Talkeetna, a cute town where we had lunch. Think Northern Exposure. Then on to Anchorage. We spent the night and then got up to see Anchorage. We stayed at the Sheraton. It took 2 hours to get our luggage. Trying to get coffee in the morning took forever. They were completely under staffed even though they knew 3 tour buses were coming in and leaving at the same time. No apologies and complete indifference. Unfortunately being on a land part of the cruise apparently gives you last priority to board the ship. While everyone else was able to board at noon we were not able to board til about 5:30. We were stalled in Anchorage and then we stopped briefly at the Wildlife Conservation Center. Then stalled again in Seward. By then most of us were done with buses. It should be that you leave by 9am, drive to the Conservation Center and board the ship at noon for lunch. We had a suite as we were traveling with our two adult daughters and it made better sense than to have 2 cabins. Just an FYI. If you have a 2 bedroom suite you only get 1 hotel room on the land part of the cruise which we thought was ridiculous! Luckily we figured this out before and paid more money to get 2 hotel rooms but our tour guide says that a lot of times people figure this out for the first time when they check in. We had the Ruby Penthouse suite which was amazing! Getting a suite gets you priority check in and a concierge who helps you throughout the cruise. Dinner reservations, priority disembarkation at ports etc. Our suite also came with butler service. It was so nice to have breakfast brought to our room or have hot chocolate in the afternoon. Also you had special deck privileges for viewing glaciers. Our suite had a bedroom and bath right when you got in. Think inside cabin. It had a full bed and a twin bed bunk bed. The bathroom was a decent size. Then there was a living room with a table with four chairs and a couch and coffee table and a balcony. It had a refrigerator and Nespresso coffee maker. The second bedroom was right off the living room with a King size bed and a huge bathroom with double sinks, a big closet a tub with floor to ceiling windows and a walk in shower with floor to ceiling windows as well, and multiple jets. We loved the suite!!! Also with a suite you get your own private dining room for breakfast and lunch. The food in there was really good!!! Also you get priority disembarkation and we got through customs very quickly. The ship was recently remodeled and felt new and nice. The only problem is this is a very small ship. So there are not a lot of extra amenities. There is a spa and a casino and a theater but no other things to do. The scenery is breathtaking but unless you are into Bingo or playing cards there is not a lot to do on the ship. The game room (board games, cards, etc.) was packed. They should have made it twice as big with the lack of other activities. Luckily we had our suite. We often brought cards to a bar area and played there. The food was ok. In the upgraded restaurants the food was really good but in the main dining rooms it was just ok. I was disappointed that on an Alaska cruise there was not more salmon or King Crab. We actually ate off the ship in very port and had the most amazing meals. With all of that seafood available it should have been offered more on board. The shows were good with a mix of musical, comedy and a Cirque show. We always got seats no problem and they have people bringing you drinks right up to showtime. The casino was fun but the table had a $10 minimum and went from there. Most sat empty. We would have used the table more if maybe there was a $5 table. The ports of Icy Strait, Juneau, Skagway and Ketchikan were small and could be seen in about an hour or two. Most people took excursions at each port. Since we had done the land part we just walked around, ate and enjoyed the quietness of the ship. The excursions were really expensive. Most were around $200 per person and with four of us that would mean spending another $800. The highlights were the Hubbard Glacier and Dawes Glacier. We were amazed at the beautiful blue iceberg and seeing seals float by on them was so serene. We did have a photo session at the Hubbard Glacier. It is not cost for the session and you pay for the pics only if you like them. For one pic it was $250 and it went from there. If they would reduce their cost we would have bought many more! Beware the drink packages on this cruise are outrageous. Luckily ours were included but it was $900 per person for 7 days. The bar service was great though and you never had to wait for a drink. Ali at the mojito bar was awesome!! He had our drink order down by Day 2 and we only went a couple times. Overall this was an amazing trip. Next time we would pick a bigger ship but that being said I do believe being on a a smaller ship let us go into see some of the glaciers we might not have seen. The service was fantastic. Everyone was very nice and most went out of their way to make sure you had what you wanted. There were 2000 passengers and 1000 crew so you definitely felt like people were there to help you. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose the Jewel to Alaska for several reasons. Entertainment, good food, Alaskan ports to visit, and the NCL family. Entertainment on the ship is always available. Our favorite venue is the Stardust evening shows. The cruise ... Read More
We chose the Jewel to Alaska for several reasons. Entertainment, good food, Alaskan ports to visit, and the NCL family. Entertainment on the ship is always available. Our favorite venue is the Stardust evening shows. The cruise performers put on three outstanding shows. The first was Velvet, a music and dance production with many costume changes and a fantastic light show set to the music. The second was a collection of songs and dances. It also had the wonderful voices, lights, dancing, along with the stage band. The last performance showcased the acrobatic abilities of the cast. Amazing!!! Other nightly shows included a very funny comedian with a late night bonus. He could really work the crowd. There was a Russian couple that performed feats of strength and balance, as well as aerials. Good food was found everywhere. Our favorite was the Garden Cafe. Rowen Luna, an assistant chef, was at a carving station. His salmon was the best on the ship, and I tried a couple different salmon dishes. He always greeted us and wished us an enjoyable cruise. He also took the time to explain how the meats were prepared in the big ovens. His roast suckling pig was a work of art and flavor. Of course, NCL strives to make everyone feel welcome and part of their family. That is the main reason we prefer NCL over the other cruise lines. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
This cruise was on my bucket list, with Panama canal, & a friend was interested enough to come with me. We arrived in Vancouver the evening before embarkation & overnighted in an airport hotel, as it was Canada Day we started ... Read More
This cruise was on my bucket list, with Panama canal, & a friend was interested enough to come with me. We arrived in Vancouver the evening before embarkation & overnighted in an airport hotel, as it was Canada Day we started off for the port quite early, utilising the train service to get there. The streets around the port were crowded, but there were lots of people giving directions & we quickly found where to drop off our luggage. We were pretty early for our check in slot, so we made the most of the carnival atmosphere, sporting flags & temporary (we hoped) maple leaf tattoos. Once it was time to check in we proceeded to the hall, which is where it all went a little awry. As UK passport holders we were directed to a separate queue, this was smaller than the main queue, but it appeared there was only 1 (or possible 2) counters serving us compared to a dozen or so for the main, it moved incredible slowly. Then suddenly they started sending people to all different desks & things sped up, when we got to a desk the woman asked us how long we'd been there & seemed shocked at our response, considering we were processed in less than 5 minutes, I really don't know why it all took so long & can't really understand the logic in the separation to begin with. Anyway, after that we were quite soon aboard. We decided to check if the luggage had been delivered, it had, put in the cabin, take a quick look around, then go for our 1st cocktail of the cruise & a bite to eat. Our steward was often about when we were in the corridor & was always polite & friendly, tho I'm not sure he always understood what my friend was going on about, the room was always tidy & supplies stocked up. I found nearly all the officers & crew very polite & friendly, (there was 1 guy in one of the bars who always looked a bit fed up, but maybe that was just his face), the staff in the MDRs often had a quick chat, as Europeans I think we tended to eat later than a lot of the Americans, so it wasn't as busy as earlier in the evening, & the staff in the bar we mostly frequented realised quite quickly we didn't want 1/2 an iceberg in our drinks. We only used the included restaurants, mostly Azura & Tsar, we tried O'Sheenehan for lunch one day & one evening Chin Chin, the only one to disappoint. We didn't feel the need to go to the specialist places, also my friend is a mostly vegetarian (adding fish for this holiday). We did 2 excursions via NCL & 2 with another company, plus some independently. The NCL were in Ketchican, we went to the Rainforest Sanctuary & Alaska Raptor centre, we didn't see any wildlife, a matter of luck as the group 5-10 mins behind us saw 3 bears, but it was a very informative walk thro the Tongass forest with a naturalist & at the Raptor centre we had a flight demonstration and got pretty close to a large female bald eagle, the centre cares for & rehabilitates injured, but keep some which would be unable to survive in the wild. We also did a duck tour, something I've always planned to do on the Thames, which was fun. In Juneau we did a whale watching tour on a small boat with marine biologist & another naturalist, we saw several whales including a mother & calf, plus a sealion fighting off several gulls who were trying to steal it's salmon. We also went out to Mendenhall glacier & walked the path to Nugget Falls. Our last excursion was in Skagway where we did a coach trip up thro the Canadian border to Yukon, stopping at various interesting spots, a quite relaxing trip. The only shows we didn't attend were the comedian, I find them in general very polarising, but thought all the others very good. The best was undoubtedly Le Circe Bijou, although I also really enjoyed the couple who did the dancing/acrobatic show, but I overheard a woman who thought it was rubbish, horses for courses I suppose. All in all we had a very enjoyable week on board NCL Jewel, I hadn't known what to expect, all my previous cruises having been on European lines, but I would certainly travel with them again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruse for the dates and itinerary. We celebrated a thirtieth anniversary onboard the ship. Our previous NCL experience was the Escape in the Haven suites. On this cruise we had two rooms, one inside and one balcony mini ... Read More
We chose this cruse for the dates and itinerary. We celebrated a thirtieth anniversary onboard the ship. Our previous NCL experience was the Escape in the Haven suites. On this cruise we had two rooms, one inside and one balcony mini suite. The rooms were adequate in size with ample closet/storage space. The finishes did not appear to have been renovated with recent dry dock. There were chips in the bathroom counter, stains on the counter and the wood on cabinets was pretty scuffed. I expected the angled toilet in the inside room per other reviews. No ice bucket in inside room. No coffee pot in inside room. Both items in mini suite. Shower was adequate with good water pressure and easy controls. The quality of the shampoo and shower gel was lower, but serviceable. We left from Vancouver on Canada Day. This made for a bit of confusion at the port, and a bit of difficulty for taxi to get in with luggage and passengers. We arrived at 10:25 at luggage drop for a 10:30-11:00 NCL slot. Once in the terminal there were 4 stations to complete. Sign in with NCL and present cruise documents, then walked to a different area for customs, then the third area for security, the final step was to wait in a chair area for admission to the boat. Boarding happened at about 12:15. It seemed to be pretty organized despite moving all over the terminal building. We were able to eat at Tzars for lunch while waiting on rooms. The room announcement happened in stages our rooms on the 11 th floor were announced ready at about 1:30. However, only one was ready. The other was still being prepared. It was the beginning of several times where it appeared the staff was working for the first day ever. The main dining room Tzars was our favorite. Good variety of food, with consistently good service. We ate at three specialty restaurants. The level of service in Cagney’s and La Bistro was terrible. The check in for Cagney’s was an extremely inefficient method, with long lines forming in front of the elevators in a small space. The congestion at Cagney’s made it difficult for Moderno patrons to check in. Once again felt like this was the first day on the job for many of these staff members. The buffet was good, despite the high volume, seemed to be replenished well. Disappointed that the washy washy song was never sung, just the repeated washy washy said and sprayed. The staff in the buffet were attentive and tables were quickly serviced. The two largest sources of discontent with our group was temp control in public areas, everywhere was hot. The Stardust theater was unbearable for all the shows. The inside cabin was extremely hot. I brought a usb 4 inch fan to use in the inside cabin, but it was confiscated from my bag prior to cruise. The balcony room was better, because you could open the door for air. The second complaint was a general feeling of discontent by the staff. There were public complaints of the numbers of children on the cruise, 500 was mentioned several times, one of the room stewards complained about long hours with a guest. There were not a lot of smiles around the ship. The number of children certainly seemed to be a problem. There were children’s activities in spinnakers bar and lounge. This would have been fine if it was not also being used as a bar at the same time. The three ports were great. We arranged our own excursions. The only excursion we used NCL for was the train ride from sewerd to anchorage. The young man making announcements was offensive, he was not aware of breakfast options, and seemed very discontent with his job. If there needed to be a controlled exit, it could have been handled better than having people sit in the hot stardust with an employee constantly repeating don’t sit in that aisle, go to bathroom now, you can not when I call your group to leave, and complaining about the 500 children. The entertainment was some of the best I have seen on a cruise. Cirque Bijou was by far the best show I have ever seen on a cruise. Glad and Anna were fantastic. The musicians were all very talented I will consider NCL for future cruises, but I am not loyal to the line after this cruise. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
First trip to Alaska. 31st cruise overall. Arrived in Anchorage: June 21 @ 1:15 AM (a day early) and stayed at Inlet Hotel that included 24 hr shuttle and breakfast in the morning. Good hotel for a brief stayover. Great breakfast in ... Read More
First trip to Alaska. 31st cruise overall. Arrived in Anchorage: June 21 @ 1:15 AM (a day early) and stayed at Inlet Hotel that included 24 hr shuttle and breakfast in the morning. Good hotel for a brief stayover. Great breakfast in restaurant instead of doing included con't breakfast. They offered us $10 p/person off for sit-down leisurely paced meal. Do it. After some rest checked out of Inlet to go to NCL assigned hotel Hilton Anchorage via Uber (which was only 1 mile away but we had lot's of luggage). We were on the Anchorage Denali Express Pre Cruise Tour and then to embark on the Jewel Monday June 24. Our luggage was held by their Hotel Porter while we explored Anchorage. Did some trails nearby and enjoyed the hotel area. After dinner we were exhausted but decided to check at front desk (7:30 pm ish) if they knew anything about NCL land tour we were starting tomorrow. On our PDF in cruise doc's it said to "Meet your Tour Director" in lobby Saturday morning. This information is INCORRECT. The NCL Tour Directors were at the hotel from 3-8 pm in the lobby on Friday. If I didn't be nosy and check out happenings at Front Desk - we would have been in trouble with the scheduling the following morning -as luggage with special tags (2 kinds of tags) and Luggage Pull was at 6 AM on Saturday. I had 19 people in my group so it was hectic for me locating everyone with correct information- luggage tags & new schedule. A side note: We saw a banner and table in lobby for RCCL but nothing for NCL NCL was located in a side room off the lobby that nobody could see with NO SIGNAGE. Happy to report that this was our only big hiccup with tour and cruise. One minor issue is that one of our bags going to Denali was left behind but Tour Director tried hard to make it up. She was very nice and gave us excellent information. NCL Accommodations were all nice locations and properties. If I were to do over: one more day in Denali. The hotel was great Grizzly Bear Resort. Too much to see in short time. Embarkation was a breeze at 4-4:30 pm in Seward. I had a Balcony Stateroom 9044 - and with this itinerary- I don't feel that starboard side of ship made a difference. We had 4 Specialty Dinners included: we did Cagney's 2X, La Cucina, and Moderno. I have a shellfish allergy so some restaurants I had to eliminate and some items on menu's I cannot have because of contaminated oil in fryers or on cutting surfaces. They always asked before taking orders if there are allergies. All my meals onboard were very good to excellent. All our servers were also great. We had no complaints. The shows at night that we saw were excellent. NCL does SHINE on entertainment. Ports: Seward from the bus. Next time we would spend a day here. Impressive driving to the Port from Anchorage At Sea with Hubbard Glacier: magnificent viewing from several area's on the ship. Icy Strait Point: walked to Hoonah and saw totem pole carvers, brew house, and then walked back around ISP shops and restaurants. Juneau: We did Whale watching with Juneau Tours Skagway: White Pass Scenic Railway, Red Dog Saloon, walking thru town. Ketchikan: Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show It was too early for the Salmon to be running so I wish we could have seen that. I am sure we might have seen more bears also with the fish. Did alot of walking around in Ketchikan -Married Man's Trail, Totem Heritage Center, Hatchery & Eagle Center, Creek Street, Funicular Tram to the Lodge. Vancouver: Got off the ship at 9 AM. Plan A -Was going to find CDS in Canada Place to hold and deliver our luggage to airport so that we could tour -however they are no longer there according to Gray Line tours. I checked online a week prior and it did not tell me otherwise so we did Plan B. Gray Line had a luggage holding area until 5 pm but no airport delivery. Since it was Canada Day, a national Holiday, it was CRAZY around port and around all tourist area's. We settled for Hop on Hop off bus to tour Vancouver which was fine. Just the crowds were huge. Picked up luggage at 3:40 pm and walked 1.5 blocks with luggage and crowds to train station- destination going to airport. It was easy once we got there. Ate dinner in airport and waited 3 hours before airline check in. Didn't want to chance getting to airport with luggage hold and crowds. Many of my group stayed 1-2 extra nights which they were able to enjoy Vancouver more.....but it was pricey because of the Holiday. Great trip but need a vacation to rest. LOL Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
My husband picked this trip for our 25th Wedding Anniversary, so this was suppose to be a trip of a lifetime. Before I tell the negative let me give you the positive. This was a two week trip the first week on land was done thru NCL with ... Read More
My husband picked this trip for our 25th Wedding Anniversary, so this was suppose to be a trip of a lifetime. Before I tell the negative let me give you the positive. This was a two week trip the first week on land was done thru NCL with premiere travel we had a awesome guide and wonderful motor coach driver. The cruise on the other hand was still good but a let down after the first week. The Norwegian Jewel Staff was very rude but what do you expect when you pay your tips up front. The food was the same thing everyday and very bland. It was like eating in a hospital. I talked to several people that ate at the specialty restaurants and said it was horrible so we never wasted our money. Day 4 they started running out of beer. The ship was just okay nothing spectacular very hard to find things on board. the cabins where very worn. The activities on board for the most part where good. The comedian was awesome. Getting on and off the ship was very easy, but again the employees very rude. We chose a wifi package... don't because you'll never be able to get on, unless you would like to up grade for more money. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
At the urging of our son-in-law and daughter and wanting to go to Alaska, we decided to take our first cruise. We went to Alaska first and then took the cruise from Seward down to Vancouver. It was a wonderful trip including the beautiful ... Read More
At the urging of our son-in-law and daughter and wanting to go to Alaska, we decided to take our first cruise. We went to Alaska first and then took the cruise from Seward down to Vancouver. It was a wonderful trip including the beautiful scenery along the way. My wife and I were surprised with all the very nice restaurants, the variety of food and the wonderful service we had all the week. The food was wonderful everywhere we ate with a great variety of items. At the four ports we took advantage of four excursions which made the trip more memorable. My wife was impressed with the towel animals that were left on our bed. The cabin was very nice and kept clean twice a day. I enjoyed sitting on the balcony and taking photos of the snow capped mountains as we cruised the straits. We were impressed with the Norwegian Jewel and would recommend this trip to everyone. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Most beautiful state in America. Norwegian does a fantastic job of showing the beautiful scenery and explaining what you are seeing. The glaciers are beautiful, although the caving is sad to see. The ride is smooth. We had 80-85 degree ... Read More
Most beautiful state in America. Norwegian does a fantastic job of showing the beautiful scenery and explaining what you are seeing. The glaciers are beautiful, although the caving is sad to see. The ride is smooth. We had 80-85 degree weather which made it an unreal expats we were able to enjoy the pool and music when on board. Excursions were unbelievable. We went snorkeling-we were kept warm, safe and showed amazing sea life by amazing guides. Bike and brewery great exercise, sites, with a trip to a glacier and beer. And of course nothing better than the puppies and sled dogs. We did the land and sea so we played with puppies 3 different times, along with a ride (4x4) pulled by dogs-their summer workout. The food was excellent. Staff amazing-helps wherever needed. Entertainment was great. The shows were professionally done. The comic was amazing, they even let him do an extra show. If you haven’t been GO BEFORE IT MELTS! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
Good variety of food & places to eat. Loved the Japanese restaurant. For the most part, the service was excellent. Shore excursions booked through NCL were great. Loved the entertainment, only missed one night. Jake was a good ... Read More
Good variety of food & places to eat. Loved the Japanese restaurant. For the most part, the service was excellent. Shore excursions booked through NCL were great. Loved the entertainment, only missed one night. Jake was a good emcee . Bartenders were great. Drink variety was good. Loved the overall experience. Would have no problem recommending NCL to my friends and family. Liked the fact that they had things for you to do on the days we were at sea. Played bingo on those days. Did trivia one day. Visited the casino a couple of times. Enjoyed Deal or No Deal. That was very entertaining. Some day I hope to take another cruise with NCL. It was a very good experience. Weather was absolutely perfect. Couldn't have asked for better. Would have liked to spend time by the pool, but we were on the go too much! Good job NCL!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
All staff were very cordial and engaging., eager to assist with any of our needs. Loved visiting the ports and especially the glaciers. The ship was very clean and committed to the prevention of infection I especially loved the washy washy ... Read More
All staff were very cordial and engaging., eager to assist with any of our needs. Loved visiting the ports and especially the glaciers. The ship was very clean and committed to the prevention of infection I especially loved the washy washy station and the bathrooms were always clean The cruise line can improve on the selection of entrees offering more exquisite dining without charging an additional fee. I would have liked to see more involvement by the activity staff at the poolside it always makes for a better day when there is a band playing and games to entertain you. We loved our precruise land tour as well. This offered us a close encounter with Alaska’s greatest offerings, we were able to observe moose, brown bears, caribou, dall sheep and countless America’s national bird the bald eagle. Although we were very awe struck with Alaska, we feel the cruise line can upgrade to offer more exquisite dining especially by offering lobster tails as part of the ever changing daily menu. In conclusion we would recommend visiting our 49th state on the Jewel. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise because of the smaller ship and the associated land tour. We were not disappointed. The service on the ship was exemplary. Everyone we came in contact with was friendly and helpful. When our shower overflowed a ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the smaller ship and the associated land tour. We were not disappointed. The service on the ship was exemplary. Everyone we came in contact with was friendly and helpful. When our shower overflowed a little due to a slow drain, Guest Services sent maintenance to our cabin within 30 minutes. The variety of food was good in the buffet and the complimentary restaurants. We also enjoyed the shows. The narration during the glacier viewing was informative and interesting. The captain turned the ship so passengers could enjoy the views from wherever they were on the ship. Our favorite port excursions were “Alaska Whales and Rainforest Trails” and the sea fishermen’s tour in Ketchikan on the Aleutian Ballard from The Deadliest Catch. Guides for both of these excursions were extremely knowledgeable and personable while behaving in a professional way. The captain on the whale watching excursion was in touch with other boats and knew exactly where the whales were that day. The captain and crew on the Aleutian Ballard were beyond description in the way they presented their tour in an entertaining way. An added delight was when they surprised us by feeding eagles from the boat. They must have attracted 3 dozen eagles right up to the boat. What a delight! Yep! We’d happily do this again. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
I wanted to go to Alaska, experience wonderful and beautiful scenery, experience of a lifetime. Food was good, room with a balcony was perfect. Me and my husband do not do the nightlife, bars or lounges, but we enjoyed the trip, stayed on ... Read More
I wanted to go to Alaska, experience wonderful and beautiful scenery, experience of a lifetime. Food was good, room with a balcony was perfect. Me and my husband do not do the nightlife, bars or lounges, but we enjoyed the trip, stayed on our balcony and eat whenever we wanted. Dressed up two different nights and went to the restaurants. The bike excursion was one of the best, loved it! Train excursion was amazing, and the kayaking was an awesome experience. We went along with my sister and her husband, no children. The choice of excursions were good, and we had a really enjoyable time. Loved the balcony, that made our trip the best it could be. You need an ice cream bar, not just the dispensers with ice cream. The food was good would have liked more fish salmon etc. Boat needs to be updated, but all in all it was amazing. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
We had done an Alaska cruise 3 years ago and wanted to go back and see the interior parts of Alaska. Both the land portion and cruise were fantastic! Our embarkation was easy since we arrived in Seward around 3:00 in the afternoon. We ... Read More
We had done an Alaska cruise 3 years ago and wanted to go back and see the interior parts of Alaska. Both the land portion and cruise were fantastic! Our embarkation was easy since we arrived in Seward around 3:00 in the afternoon. We were immediately shown to our forward suite. The Jewel was renovated and was beautiful. Our suite was very roomy and we certainly enjoyed it but I have to say that I don't care for the wind you get on the balcony. When we were in port or seeing glaciers, it was great! We saw Hubbard and Sawyer Glaciers and they were both beautiful. We had dinner in Cagney's, LeBistro and Teppanyaki and it is hard to choose which would be the best. All three are excellent! I did notice that the "show" that Teppanyaki usually does while preparing the meal was non existent. Not sure why they cut that out but the food was great! We also visited the buffet once and O'Shehan's once. No complaints at either. Dinner in the main dining room was also very nice. All the food was good as always. Entertainment was good but not great. I thought Rock You Tonight was the best show we saw. The 45 minutes just flew by and we wanted more! Velvet was okay but didn't seem to have a good flow to it. The comedian, Carl Strong, was very funny and we enjoyed him. Le Cirque Bijou was incredible. My only problem was trying to keep up with all the acts, there were several going on at the same time. Icy Strait Point was a great port that we had not visited on our previous cruise. Our excursion, Whales & Wildlife, was great and I highly recommend it. We saw bears, eagles, whales and sea lions. In Skagway, we visited a Musher's Camp and actually had a ride in a sled. We got to hold puppies too. Bottom line, this was a great cruise! If you have the time, I encourage you to do the land tour before the cruise. We did the Authentic Alaska and it was incredible! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We took the Alaskan cruise out of Vancouver on the Jewel. Sales was great, but customer service after we paid for the trip was difficult to reach. Air arrangements were made by NCL, and we had to contact NCL to find arrangements as they ... Read More
We took the Alaskan cruise out of Vancouver on the Jewel. Sales was great, but customer service after we paid for the trip was difficult to reach. Air arrangements were made by NCL, and we had to contact NCL to find arrangements as they did not contact us once arrangements had been made. HINT: Air arrangements are NOT on the website under the Air Arrangements link, but in the Print Documents link. We had hoped to explore a little of Vancouver, but spent too much time in and out of customs. Would recommend to US passengers, go out of Seattle or another US port. We were not greeted or given direction when boarding the ship. Found out where we should be going when we tried to go up stairs to our cabin and asked, “where are you going?” by a crew member who then directed us. Our luggage was placed in front of wrong cabin (several cabins back and around a corner). On first day of cruise, they had already run out of two beers on the menu. Overall, food was mediocre to bad. There were two dishes that I couldn’t finish. Breakfast food was OK, but service slow. A bartender did not have daily specials in the menu book, but insisted that it was in there three times before my husband showed him; yet we received no apology for, basically, calling my husband a liar. We had purchased the drink package. We were told that if there was a star next to a bottle of wine, that bottle was included in our drink package. Also, at the bottom of the wine list is posted, “ * Choice of bottle include in premium plus package.” We ordered a bottle for dinner and were surprised to have a bill, with a 15% discount, but a 20% gratuity added. The cabin was clean, wish that the gratuities that we were consistently paying would have gone exclusively to the woman cleaning our cabin. Land excursions were very good and seeing the glaciers was amazing. We just wish we hadn’t used NCL to get there. Read Less
Norwegian Jewel Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 4.1
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 1.0 3.4
Service 3.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 3.0 4.1

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