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Below is my honest review and my top tips - I consider myself to be a well seasoned traveller and have done everything from budget to uber luxurious. My big take away / message for anyone is to make sure this type of cruise is for you. I've noticed that a lot of reviews slam certain things that are not a result of the cruise itself, but because of the type of cruise and clientele it attracts. We chose this cruise for the solo cruiser option as my husband and I were travelling with my mom for her 70th birthday. The EPIC does a great job in accommodating single travellers with no single supplement. We embarked and disembarked in Rome. Note, a majority of travellers will start/end in Barcelona so embarking/disembarking was quick and easy. Ship: Very modern, clean and everything was spotless. I was extremely impressed with the attention to detail from staff. The public bathrooms, eating and public areas were never messy and staff were continually cleaning around you. Very impressed. The ship is big - loads of places to see/do onboard With 5000 passengers, this could pose challenges for some but is a good thing for others. Cabin: We had a mid balcony room. Clean and comfortable. I understand why they designed the bathrooms the way they did (to provide better flexibility and more room for passengers). Functionally, it worked. However, if you have issues with your cabin-mate listening to you 'do your business', the small screen around the toilet doesn't do much to hide any sounds. Plus, you don't have access to a sink or shower to run to hide any noises so be prepared to either banish your partner to the balcony if this is an issue for you! Loads of storage in the room - it was awesome. Lots of hangers, nice size balcony, etc. Very good room (we were in room 12116) Food/Drinks: The food in the specialty dining restaurants was excellent as were the buffet options in the main market cafe. The food in the main dining rooms was OK, but we ate the last night here and compared to the food in Specialty Dining rooms which was hard to beat. The meal provided at Cirque wasn't the best (set meal of surf and turf) which didn't provide much flexibility for options. Totally recommended specialty meal package if you can get it! Drinks and Wine options exceptional. Entertainment: Loved Cirque - Awesome! Get premium seats if you can as you are right in the action. Burn the Floor and Pricilla both really good. On board Service: Exceptional! Quick, friendly and very accommodating. I was super happy with the level of service - some of the best I've experienced in a very long time. Ports: Not overly impressed with the ports. I've been to all the cities before. Getting into Florence and Rome took quite a bit of time (due to location away from ocean). Cities right on the ports Marseille and Naples were very dirty. The best port was Barcelona (easy access and beautiful city), however, important to know that the ship docks on Sunday so if you embark from another city other than Barcelona, you will miss out on a lot of really cool things in this city. On Sunday, the main market is closed, as are many of the shops. Still, lots to see and do but if you are into food and want to experience the Gothic Area to full potential, the shops need to be open. It's a lovely city with a great vibe- the best of all the ports of call in my opinion.It was a shame that a lot of it was shut on Sunday, the same/only day the ship docks here. As a result, I'd recommend starting and ending in Barcelona so you can spend some time here. Pre Travel/Booking: - TOP TIP I booked the trip in the UK and paid Stirling. My mom (who lives in Canada) saw the same cruise advertised for the same price in Canadian dollars. Essentially, due to the currency conversion, we paid almost double for the same cruise if we would have booked it through the north american NCL branch. We still would have saved hundreds if we lost our 100 pound deposit and rebooked! NCL would not do anything for us, except provide a $100 on board credit. This is the biggest disappointment of the cruise. If you are thinking of booking a trip, check the US or Canada travel agents or website as you could save hundreds of pounds. NCL offer different deals overseas than here to attract Canadian/North American customers. Overall: The EPIC is a lovely ship, the people and the food were top notch. Exceeded my expectations. My biggest frustration was not the fault of the ship or any of the staff. My advice to anyone thinking of booking - know what kind of cruise you are signing up for. This is not the fault of the cruises ship or hard working staff on the ship. You are on a massive ship with 5000 people catering to families, singles and younger people. There will be screaming children, obnoxious guests and a lack of lounge chairs on sea days (people will put towels on chairs in AM and bugger off all day) - this resulted in more than half the chairs sitting empty all day while hundreds of people wondering around trying to find a spot. Not cool! We had our own balcony so had our own private space which was a god send. You will have to walk - you will have to do stairs, you will need to send your husband on the balcony if you need to poo! It's a big ship! If you have kids, don't mind being around a lot of people, enjoy a drink and good food then this ship is for you! If you are wanting a romantic, quiet get away with easy access to ports without paying for excursions, then maybe this isn't the right cruise for you. It boils down to what you want and your attitude. The NCL Epic was a lovely ship, the staff were awesome and we totally enjoyed the food/wine. When it got a bit overwhelming with people on the sailing day, we had our own little space on our balcony which was great. Overall, we had a great time and recommend if this is the type of cruise for you.

Cruise great, but be clear of what YOU want out of the holiday.

Norwegian Epic Cruise Review by lhorne

59 people found this helpful
Trip Details
Below is my honest review and my top tips - I consider myself to be a well seasoned traveller and have done everything from budget to uber luxurious. My big take away / message for anyone is to make sure this type of cruise is for you. I've noticed that a lot of reviews slam certain things that are not a result of the cruise itself, but because of the type of cruise and clientele it attracts.

We chose this cruise for the solo cruiser option as my husband and I were travelling with my mom for her 70th birthday. The EPIC does a great job in accommodating single travellers with no single supplement. We embarked and disembarked in Rome. Note, a majority of travellers will start/end in Barcelona so embarking/disembarking was quick and easy.

Ship: Very modern, clean and everything was spotless. I was extremely impressed with the attention to detail from staff. The public bathrooms, eating and public areas were never messy and staff were continually cleaning around you. Very impressed. The ship is big - loads of places to see/do onboard With 5000 passengers, this could pose challenges for some but is a good thing for others.

Cabin: We had a mid balcony room. Clean and comfortable. I understand why they designed the bathrooms the way they did (to provide better flexibility and more room for passengers). Functionally, it worked. However, if you have issues with your cabin-mate listening to you 'do your business', the small screen around the toilet doesn't do much to hide any sounds. Plus, you don't have access to a sink or shower to run to hide any noises so be prepared to either banish your partner to the balcony if this is an issue for you! Loads of storage in the room - it was awesome. Lots of hangers, nice size balcony, etc. Very good room (we were in room 12116)

Food/Drinks: The food in the specialty dining restaurants was excellent as were the buffet options in the main market cafe. The food in the main dining rooms was OK, but we ate the last night here and compared to the food in Specialty Dining rooms which was hard to beat. The meal provided at Cirque wasn't the best (set meal of surf and turf) which didn't provide much flexibility for options. Totally recommended specialty meal package if you can get it! Drinks and Wine options exceptional.

Entertainment: Loved Cirque - Awesome! Get premium seats if you can as you are right in the action. Burn the Floor and Pricilla both really good.

On board Service: Exceptional! Quick, friendly and very accommodating. I was super happy with the level of service - some of the best I've experienced in a very long time.

Ports: Not overly impressed with the ports. I've been to all the cities before. Getting into Florence and Rome took quite a bit of time (due to location away from ocean). Cities right on the ports Marseille and Naples were very dirty. The best port was Barcelona (easy access and beautiful city), however, important to know that the ship docks on Sunday so if you embark from another city other than Barcelona, you will miss out on a lot of really cool things in this city. On Sunday, the main market is closed, as are many of the shops. Still, lots to see and do but if you are into food and want to experience the Gothic Area to full potential, the shops need to be open. It's a lovely city with a great vibe- the best of all the ports of call in my opinion.It was a shame that a lot of it was shut on Sunday, the same/only day the ship docks here. As a result, I'd recommend starting and ending in Barcelona so you can spend some time here.

Pre Travel/Booking: - TOP TIP

I booked the trip in the UK and paid Stirling. My mom (who lives in Canada) saw the same cruise advertised for the same price in Canadian dollars. Essentially, due to the currency conversion, we paid almost double for the same cruise if we would have booked it through the north american NCL branch. We still would have saved hundreds if we lost our 100 pound deposit and rebooked! NCL would not do anything for us, except provide a $100 on board credit. This is the biggest disappointment of the cruise. If you are thinking of booking a trip, check the US or Canada travel agents or website as you could save hundreds of pounds. NCL offer different deals overseas than here to attract Canadian/North American customers.

Overall: The EPIC is a lovely ship, the people and the food were top notch. Exceeded my expectations. My biggest frustration was not the fault of the ship or any of the staff.

My advice to anyone thinking of booking - know what kind of cruise you are signing up for. This is not the fault of the cruises ship or hard working staff on the ship.

You are on a massive ship with 5000 people catering to families, singles and younger people. There will be screaming children, obnoxious guests and a lack of lounge chairs on sea days (people will put towels on chairs in AM and bugger off all day) - this resulted in more than half the chairs sitting empty all day while hundreds of people wondering around trying to find a spot. Not cool! We had our own balcony so had our own private space which was a god send.

You will have to walk - you will have to do stairs, you will need to send your husband on the balcony if you need to poo! It's a big ship! If you have kids, don't mind being around a lot of people, enjoy a drink and good food then this ship is for you!

If you are wanting a romantic, quiet get away with easy access to ports without paying for excursions, then maybe this isn't the right cruise for you.

It boils down to what you want and your attitude. The NCL Epic was a lovely ship, the staff were awesome and we totally enjoyed the food/wine. When it got a bit overwhelming with people on the sailing day, we had our own little space on our balcony which was great. Overall, we had a great time and recommend if this is the type of cruise for you.
lhorne’s Full Rating Summary
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