A Great Time... but a few complaints.... : Norwegian Jade Cruise Review by dthomas5787

Norwegian Jade 4
Member Since 2012

Overall Member Rating

A Great Time... but a few complaints....

Sail Date: September 2012
Destination: Europe - Eastern Mediterranean
Embarkation: Venice
We left on the Norwegian Jade on September 22nd from Venice, Italy.

We got in to Venice a day early and had a wonderful time seeing the city. We stayed in a hotel called Ca' Doge, or Canton del Doge. We found the room to be quite small, but that is the norm for the area. The nicest thing about it is that it is directly across the street from the Piazzale Roma, and the People Mover(Tram station to the Cruise Pier) Venice truly is a place unlike any other. I will warn you to wear comfortable walking shoes as it is a great city for going around on foot. The sights are the sights, so expect long lines and big crowds in spots like the Rialto Bridge and St. Marks Square. With that being said, people are generally courteous and move relatively quickly to allow everyone a chance to see the sights. The Vaporetto's are the waterbuses and generally the cheapest way to get around if you don't want to walk in the city, but to actually get to the city from Mestre I suggest taking to ACTV More buses (1 euro 30 cents/rider). If you are flying in to Marco Polo, you can get a Bus ride to Piazzale Roma (The Bus Station in Venice Proper)for 6 euros per rider. If you have the time, make it a point to get around Venice as it is definitely a city worth seeing.

The boarding process for the Jade was ok. I've had better, but I've definitely had worse. The check-in attendants were very friendly and the people who took your big luggage were very helpful.

The food on the buffet deck was good. Not great, but definitely not the worst I've had. The selection was quite diverse. They had everything from the basic hamburgers and chicken sandwiches to more ethnic dishes such as stir fry and indian roti bread. The main complaint we had was in regards to the freestyle dining. While I understand and appreciate that many guests like that style of eating arrangement, I would prefer the option to have a set time for dining. Every night we went to either the Grand Pacific or Alizar dining rooms, there was a pretty extensive wait. They ease the frustration by having champagne and hors d'eouvres for you to sip and munch on, but it would be nice to just go in and sit down. Also I enjoy the experience of getting to know my server and get their opinions on ports and what to do when there. Just a personal opinion though, and I know not everyone shares it.

The second problem I had was on the pool deck during days at sea. I understand that everyone wants a good chair in a nice area, but I feel that if you leave said chair unattended for an extended amount of time, maybe 20 minutes, you should lose the right of the chair. There's no real way to police this, so I'm just being a bit nit picky, but it is extremely frustrating to walk around a deck for 30 minutes and not find a single chair that doesn't have a towel on it and is reserved for someone who has been down at the casino for the past hour. Just a rant and I'm off my soap box...

The last complaint is the cost of some of their entertainment. They have a deal or no deal game that seemed like it could be neat and a good time, but I was disappointed when I checked my account statement and saw that the cards were $20 a pop. Probably our fault considering we got there a bit late, but it just seemed a bit high to me. Also their bingo cards were a bit expensive. Once again, I'm being a bit nit picky here, but that was a valid concern we had.

Overall the cruise was a wonderful time and we made memories that we will cherish forever. I would highly suggest this itenerary for anyone who is considering it. Less

Published 10/07/12

Cabin review: BA9098 Mid-Ship Balcony

Getting on the ship, I was very surprised at how beautifully appointed it was. I don't really know what I was expecting, but my expectations were blown out of the water. Our room was either bigger or arranged in such a way that it seemed bigger than we have had on other ships. We were in a balcony stateroom. What surprised me (and elated my wife) the most was the size of the shower. Norwegian has figured out a way to fit an almost normal sized shower into a stateroom bathroom. I was impressed. The room was nice other than that. Storage was good, nice use of mirrors to help increase the illusion of more space. TV was a bit older, but that is generally to be expected. They had a pretty good movie selection, but only one channel in english for the movies. Not that big of a deal though, considering the limited amount of time that you watch movies in your room during a cruise.

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Port and Shore Excursions

Corfu was beautiful. I was very pleasantly surprised with how varied the island's topography was. They had lovely beaches (we went to Dassia beach, about 30 euros for a taxi and 6 euros for 2 lounge chairs and an umbrella) and then went to the old town area (another 30 euros for cab fare). The old town area is really neat and you can see the influences from the different groups that had claim to the island over its history.
Read 508 Corfu Reviews

We had a great time in Katakolon. KATAKOLON EXPRESS. Use them. They have very reasonable rates, and are great tour guides for Olympia. Don't bother booking through the ship for them. Their rates are roughly a third of the cost of the same exact tour on the ship. They give a great history of the area and do a very good job of explaining the cross overs with today's society. Mercouri Estates Winery. They have excellent wine and some of the best olive oil in all of the world. The winery has been in the same family's operation for over 150 years and Christos, who now runs the winery with his brother, is a delightful person to get to meet and talk to a bit. I would highly suggest checking them out if you have the opportunity.

Paradise beach. Be careful as the right side of the beach when looking at the ocean is the more liberal and european side of the beach. Not a bad thing, we just didn't expect it and were a bit surprised when we got there. The area is beautiful though and I would suggest just taking the bus to get out there as it is only 1 euro 50 cents to get there.
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Volcano Hiking

Our guide was excellent and extremely informative. Wear good comfortable shoes that you don't mind getting dirty for this excursion. Also make sure to take a water that they offer for the hike. It is quite a bit of exercise getting to the top. The swim in the hot springs was really neat, but kind of a let down as the water was not all that hot and the seas were very cold at that time. Our guide did give us some great advice about Fira though and we found the Sphinx restaurant as a result. Excellent food, decent price, and an absolutely breathtaking sunset view over the caldera.

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