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I chose this cruise on the Norweigen Gem the week of 10/21 for 10 days because of the ports in Canada that the ship was stopping at -Halifax, Quebec, Cornerbrook and Sydney. Ship met up with whales so we lost a day in Quebec and then hurricane Phillipe caused us to miss the port of Sydney, Nova Scotia. The captain was very nice and took us around the storm. We did have 20 ft waves but all was fine on board. I called Norwegian directly and spoke to an agent who assured me that my dietary needs were going to be met. Only then did I book the cruise with that Norwegian agent. I had a hard time finding out what food items are on the ship that were either gluten and or dairy free. There is no where a published list that lets you know there is soy and almond milk available, or that there is gluten free hamburger, hot dog rolls, or that there is white bread, English muffin and bagels available. Also, there are gluten free blueberry muffins and a flourless cake if you ask the right person. It took me to the last day to find these things out and it was all just by asking and getting the right person who knew what was available. Best bet is to talk to the Sous Chef in charge at the buffet each day. They can make your food without sauce and gravy which is on many of the hot items on the buffet. And each night, you will have to pre order your dinner if you eat in the dining rooms so the chef can prepare your food to your dietary needs. Desserts are an issue though. Keep that in mind so you are not disappointed as I was. The pastry chef needs to learn to make some better desserts for dietary needs. My friend I traveled with had no food restrictions and had no problem. He especially enjoyed the pool side barbecues and the buffets for both breakfast and lunch. But, each evening we did eat in the Main Dining rooms. Due to my dietary restrictions, we did not eat in any of the al a carte specialty restaurants. Friends who did thouougly enjoyed that experience. Everything else was good from the embankment to the disembarkment. It was organized and quick. Make sure you pick your times in both cases so your getting on and getting off is easy. The entertainment was fine each evening. Just like the opening shows in Las Vegas. There are some games and demonstrations daily plus the casino but the casino has poor ventilation and it is so smoky smelling even if you just have to walk through it. I really enjoyed Park West art gallery giving informative talks and auctions. That was so much fun. Everyone should go to an auction just for the experience. The staff on this cruise were an outstanding 3 some from South Africa. It is fun to have your picture taken but when you go to purchase them, you should take the 10 photo package deal if you want pictures from professionals. Otherwise, $25 for an 8 by 10 and $15 for a 5 by 7 photo will really add up. This was my first time cruising on Norweigen and I had not cruised in 20 years. We were celebrating my friends birthday and it was his first cruise, so this was a special occasion cruise. They sent chocolate covered strawberries to the cabin and a birthday card. At dinner he was presented with a birthday cake and the wait staff sang Happy Birthday making the experience very enjoyable. Before cruising with Norweigen again, I would have to so more research to see what other cruises offer for my dietary needs and would try another cruise line before taking another cruise on Norweigen. They offer a really good deal to travel with them again on future cruises. I could not take advantage of the special deal because I did not have an enjoyable dining experience on this cruise ship and would not want to be disappointed on another Norweigen cruise ship.

Gluten free and dairy free dining is an issue until you find out what is on board

Norwegian Gem Cruise Review by Tolenodeb

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: October 2017
  • Destination: Canada & New England
  • Cabin Type: Mid-Ship Oceanview Porthole Window
I chose this cruise on the Norweigen Gem the week of 10/21 for 10 days because of the ports in Canada that the ship was stopping at -Halifax, Quebec, Cornerbrook and Sydney.

Ship met up with whales so we lost a day in Quebec and then hurricane Phillipe caused us to miss the port of Sydney, Nova Scotia. The captain was very nice and took us around the storm. We did have 20 ft waves but all was fine on board.

I called Norwegian directly and spoke to an agent who assured me that my dietary needs were going to be met. Only then did I book the cruise with that Norwegian agent.

I had a hard time finding out what food items are on the ship that were either gluten and or dairy free. There is no where a published list that lets you know there is soy and almond milk available, or that there is gluten free hamburger, hot dog rolls, or that there is white bread, English muffin and bagels available. Also, there are gluten free blueberry muffins and a flourless cake if you ask the right person. It took me to the last day to find these things out and it was all just by asking and getting the right person who knew what was available.

Best bet is to talk to the Sous Chef in charge at the buffet each day. They can make your food without sauce and gravy which is on many of the hot items on the buffet. And each night, you will have to pre order your dinner if you eat in the dining rooms so the chef can prepare your food to your dietary needs. Desserts are an issue though. Keep that in mind so you are not disappointed as I was. The pastry chef needs to learn to make some better desserts for dietary needs.

My friend I traveled with had no food restrictions and had no problem. He especially enjoyed the pool side barbecues and the buffets for both breakfast and lunch. But, each evening we did eat in the Main Dining rooms. Due to my dietary restrictions, we did not eat in any of the al a carte specialty restaurants. Friends who did thouougly enjoyed that experience.

Everything else was good from the embankment to the disembarkment. It was organized and quick. Make sure you pick your times in both cases so your getting on and getting off is easy. The entertainment was fine each evening. Just like the opening shows in Las Vegas. There are some games and demonstrations daily plus the casino but the casino has poor ventilation and it is so smoky smelling even if you just have to walk through it.

I really enjoyed Park West art gallery giving informative talks and auctions. That was so much fun. Everyone should go to an auction just for the experience. The staff on this cruise were an outstanding 3 some from South Africa.

It is fun to have your picture taken but when you go to purchase them, you should take the 10 photo package deal if you want pictures from professionals. Otherwise, $25 for an 8 by 10 and $15 for a 5 by 7 photo will really add up.

This was my first time cruising on Norweigen and I had not cruised in 20 years. We were celebrating my friends birthday and it was his first cruise, so this was a special occasion cruise. They sent chocolate covered strawberries to the cabin and a birthday card. At dinner he was presented with a birthday cake and the wait staff sang Happy Birthday making the experience very enjoyable.

Before cruising with Norweigen again, I would have to so more research to see what other cruises offer for my dietary needs and would try another cruise line before taking another cruise on Norweigen.

They offer a really good deal to travel with them again on future cruises. I could not take advantage of the special deal because I did not have an enjoyable dining experience on this cruise ship and would not want to be disappointed on another Norweigen cruise ship.
Tolenodeb’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Mid-Ship Oceanview Porthole Window
Cabin OF 5072
Cabin was fine. It was clean and adequate for 2 adults. Have the twin beds put together to make a queen/king when you book so your room is ready when you arrive as ours was. We did not use anything in the refrigerator which is stocked with soda and liquor so we had the cabin steward remove it so we could put our water in the mini refrigerator.

Cabin Stewart was friendly and kept our cabin replenished with clean towels and also brought us extra pillows.
Deck 5 Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews