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Norwegian Jewel Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
2,389 Reviews

Full Transit Panama Canal Cruise

Norwegian Jewel Cruise Review by Gmfranklin

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Jan 2017
  • Destination: the Panama Canal & Central America
  • Cabin Type: Balcony

This was our eighth cruise and second on the Norwegian Cruise line. We chose this cruise because of the extensive port calls, 9 in 16 days including the full transit of the Panama Canal.

First the Pros of this cruise.

We had phenomenal weather, each day, sunny, warm, highs in 80's

Each port visited was well planned, easy on/off only Cabo had tenders

We took a varied number of excursions through Viator, Dream Vacations, and Norwegian and enjoyed them all.

The Panama Canal documentary and subject matter expert was excellent

The entertainment the first week, (comic/fiddler), singer and hypnotist were very good

The ultimate drink package was great, we drank all,of our allowed daily caloric intake!

We found O'Sheehans Pub, Cagneys and Churascaria restaurants to be very good

Most disappointing

Food and food portions very small and many meals to have little taste, I.e. Clams casino has four small clams, a friend and I had to look for the duck, on the duck dishes, eggplant was served in two small quarter sized portions.

To be served a bone-in ribeye steak, lobster tail, or surf and turf, a supplemental charge of $19.99 - $24.99 for each meal charged to your cabin. Our other cruises had these meals free on first and last nigh cruises

Pastries and deserts, very bland, dry, not much taste.

Beds combined to make queen very uncomfortable and seam very visible

Usual other comments about the Jewel being an older boat, carpets stained, events during sea days, very repetitive, casino was void of any excitement etc.

Embarkation took 1.5 hours, at least most of it was shaded in Miami, the disembarkation took almost three hours, only had 4 US Immigration people checking in almost 2000 US citizens. Not as Funny, in that there were an equal number of 4 Customs people checking non-US citizens as well. Never did understand why there are not more Custom Agenta for US Citizens returning back to the US.

Summary - Value for our money, was below average on this fairly expensive cruise, compared to our other cruises on Celebrity and Azamara.

Gmfranklin's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
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Cabin Review

Cabin BB 10636

Cabin was okay, bathroom very small, balcony chairs very uncomfortable

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Culinary Tour

Used viator to help us find this city food tour. Visited road side stands as well as established restaurants. Each food stop provided a different view and style of Mexican cooking.

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Dream Vacations provided a very up close encounter with many whales and a newly born calf. Outstanding cruise for the $$$

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