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I boarded the Norwegian Epic at Barcelona on August 5th, 2018. The ship was suggested to my father by a family friend. Upon further research and an appointment with a travel agent, we had our cruise booked. I'm quite an introverted, 18 year old girl. I suffer from anxiety so I was worried that being on such a big ship with over 4000 passengers would only make me panic, but the friendly staff and welcoming atmosphere always put me at ease. I got on the Norwegian Epic with my father, mother and 16 year old brother. On previous family holidays, my brother and I would be very bored because all my parents wanted to do was sunbathe. Whereas, my brother and I don't like the sun or hot weather very much. We would much rather prefer activity-filled holidays with more than just a pool for entertainment. This is why the cruise was the perfect holiday choice for our family. The ship offers a variety of different activities for all ages at different times during the day The best way to discover what is happening is to check the "Epic Today" channel on the television or read the itinerary your steward will leave in your stateroom every day. This will give you a list of activities on board, the times at which the activities occur, where the activity is taking place and what time certain parts of the ship are open to. The Splash Academy offers 4 different age groups to accommodate for families with children 6 months old all the way up to 12 years old. It is a educational youth group with offers different activities for the appropriate age group. For family with young children, there is a nursery for children under 3 years old called Guppies. This is perfect for parents who need a small break during their vacation. Trained staff will arrange drop off and pick up times for your child. There is also a late night service so that you can dance the night away before collected your little darling and going to bed. If you have a troublesome teen who you want in bed at a reasonable time, but don't want to look after all night, there is a teens club for ages 13 - 17 called Entourage which is located on the 16th floor. In order to sign up for this, all you have to do is go to a member of staff at the door of the club and fill in a general information form for your child. The staff are all trained professionals and will care for your teen appropriately, whilst offering them a safe space to socialise with other young people their age and providing a range of fun activities which can be checked on the timetable outside the door on in the itinerary. The club is open until 11pm for general entry but by paying an extra fee, your child will be looked after until 12:45am, allowing them to make their way back to their stateroom by 1am, which is the deadline for children to be in their staterooms at night. For people my age, there was 18-21 year old meeting every night around 8pm or 9pm in Bliss Lounge on deck 7. This was great for me because I struggle to initiate conversation with strangers so sitting with a group of people who were all in the same position as me made me feel so much better. Bliss Lounge also offered occasional late night dance parties for people 18+. This also helped me find people around my age and was great entertainment. Obviously the legal drinking age for America is 21 years old. However, if you have parental consent, you will be allowed to drink as long as you are 18+. Everyone under 18 has a small cut in the corner of their card to restrict them from purchasing alcohol and there are cameras all over the ship to ensure no one is providing alcohol to minors. I was on the all inclusive food and drink package so I could get my drinks for free. I quite enjoyed making my way down the several cocktail menus at the bars around the ship. My personal favourites were Long Island Iced Tea, BBC, Bushwhacker, Mudslide, Mango Meltdown and Bahama Mama. (I preferred the sweeter/fruitier ones rather than the bitter ones) I stayed in stateroom number 9222 on deck 9 during our Western Med cruise. We had an amazing steward called Arnold who always said hello in the corridors and kept the room immaculately clean. If you have young children, or are a big kid yourself (like me), you'll probably enjoy the little towel animals which are left on the beds every night. We had an elephant, a frog, a rabbit, a dog, a penguin and more! Before the cruise, I read a review from a cruiser who mentioned that your steward will remember you by name. I thought that was pretty crazy but it was so true! Arnold always addressed me by my name whenever he saw me in the hallway, and was so polite. His contract is 9 consecutive months on the ship, and he has a wife and 10 year old son back at home in the Philippines. It is amazing how dedicated the staff are to their jobs as they are willing to leave their family for many months just to earn money to send back home. We made sure to leave him a big tip for working so hard. The stateroom we stayed in was on the starboard side of the ship. It was a mid-ship balcony room. The balcony was a good size and always provided a lovely view of the Mediterranean Sea. The room also has loads of storage space, it also has a safe for keeping valuable items in such as passports, documents etc. The room also a phone and a television. The television not only allows you to watch tv but also allows you to book shows/restaurants, contact your steward, organise shore excursions and much more. The phone was also useful. If you needed to contact another room you simply just called the room number they were staying in. We used this a lot for phoning the stateroom my father and brother were staying in which was on the port side of the ship. The dining rooms on the ship were quite nice. We tried The Manhattan Room, Taste and O'Sheehan's. The Manhattan Room and Taste both has very similar menus, whereas O'Sheehan's offered more pub grub style food which is what my family enjoy more than fine dining. I also tried Shanghai's one night with my mother. I had some delicious spring rolls and kung pao chicken. If you like oriental food, I definitely recommend it. Service within the ship was always excellent. Sometimes you will have to wait at the bar for a while, depending on the time of the day and which bar you go to. Waves Bar and Spice H2O tend to be quite busy as they are on deck 15 where most people spend the day. All of the waiters and waitresses are very friendly and speedy with their service. The route the cruise takes means that the first day you get on at Barcelona is a sailing day. If you're looking to sunbathe, you may get to deck 15/16 quick because the loungers get taken up very fast. However, the 2nd day is a port day so you will notice more loungers are available as people will be going on shore excursions. The shore excursions are all very well organised. You can book tickets at the service desk on the 5th deck beside the Atrium. Here you will receive your tickets and information on meeting times and location. If you are going on a guided tour, you will be provided with a sticker which has a number on it corresponding to your bus number. It is very simple and well planned. Make sure you always bring your Norwegian Epic pass anytime you go off ship and some form of ID. If you do go on any of the excursions or decide to get off at a port to look around by yourself, I guarantee you will provided with some beautiful scenery, architecture and views. Rome and Monaco are two beautiful cities I had the pleasure to visit but it is entirely up to you what excursions you choose to go on. All of them are 100% worth the money and are very well organised. As a first time cruiser I have to say this has been a pretty unforgettable holiday. The Norwegian Epic truly does live up to its name and I hope anyone who decides to take the West Med cruise has as much fun as I did. I really hope I get to cruise on the Epic again in the future or another NCL ship! Thank you NCL for this amazing experience.

What makes the Norwegian Epic so epic?

Norwegian Epic Cruise Review by emkeenan

12 people found this helpful
Trip Details
I boarded the Norwegian Epic at Barcelona on August 5th, 2018. The ship was suggested to my father by a family friend. Upon further research and an appointment with a travel agent, we had our cruise booked. I'm quite an introverted, 18 year old girl. I suffer from anxiety so I was worried that being on such a big ship with over 4000 passengers would only make me panic, but the friendly staff and welcoming atmosphere always put me at ease.

I got on the Norwegian Epic with my father, mother and 16 year old brother. On previous family holidays, my brother and I would be very bored because all my parents wanted to do was sunbathe. Whereas, my brother and I don't like the sun or hot weather very much. We would much rather prefer activity-filled holidays with more than just a pool for entertainment. This is why the cruise was the perfect holiday choice for our family.

The ship offers a variety of different activities for all ages at different times during the day The best way to discover what is happening is to check the "Epic Today" channel on the television or read the itinerary your steward will leave in your stateroom every day. This will give you a list of activities on board, the times at which the activities occur, where the activity is taking place and what time certain parts of the ship are open to.

The Splash Academy offers 4 different age groups to accommodate for families with children 6 months old all the way up to 12 years old. It is a educational youth group with offers different activities for the appropriate age group. For family with young children, there is a nursery for children under 3 years old called Guppies. This is perfect for parents who need a small break during their vacation. Trained staff will arrange drop off and pick up times for your child. There is also a late night service so that you can dance the night away before collected your little darling and going to bed.

If you have a troublesome teen who you want in bed at a reasonable time, but don't want to look after all night, there is a teens club for ages 13 - 17 called Entourage which is located on the 16th floor. In order to sign up for this, all you have to do is go to a member of staff at the door of the club and fill in a general information form for your child. The staff are all trained professionals and will care for your teen appropriately, whilst offering them a safe space to socialise with other young people their age and providing a range of fun activities which can be checked on the timetable outside the door on in the itinerary. The club is open until 11pm for general entry but by paying an extra fee, your child will be looked after until 12:45am, allowing them to make their way back to their stateroom by 1am, which is the deadline for children to be in their staterooms at night.

For people my age, there was 18-21 year old meeting every night around 8pm or 9pm in Bliss Lounge on deck 7. This was great for me because I struggle to initiate conversation with strangers so sitting with a group of people who were all in the same position as me made me feel so much better. Bliss Lounge also offered occasional late night dance parties for people 18+. This also helped me find people around my age and was great entertainment.

Obviously the legal drinking age for America is 21 years old. However, if you have parental consent, you will be allowed to drink as long as you are 18+. Everyone under 18 has a small cut in the corner of their card to restrict them from purchasing alcohol and there are cameras all over the ship to ensure no one is providing alcohol to minors. I was on the all inclusive food and drink package so I could get my drinks for free. I quite enjoyed making my way down the several cocktail menus at the bars around the ship. My personal favourites were Long Island Iced Tea, BBC, Bushwhacker, Mudslide, Mango Meltdown and Bahama Mama. (I preferred the sweeter/fruitier ones rather than the bitter ones)

I stayed in stateroom number 9222 on deck 9 during our Western Med cruise. We had an amazing steward called Arnold who always said hello in the corridors and kept the room immaculately clean. If you have young children, or are a big kid yourself (like me), you'll probably enjoy the little towel animals which are left on the beds every night. We had an elephant, a frog, a rabbit, a dog, a penguin and more!

Before the cruise, I read a review from a cruiser who mentioned that your steward will remember you by name. I thought that was pretty crazy but it was so true! Arnold always addressed me by my name whenever he saw me in the hallway, and was so polite. His contract is 9 consecutive months on the ship, and he has a wife and 10 year old son back at home in the Philippines. It is amazing how dedicated the staff are to their jobs as they are willing to leave their family for many months just to earn money to send back home. We made sure to leave him a big tip for working so hard.

The stateroom we stayed in was on the starboard side of the ship. It was a mid-ship balcony room. The balcony was a good size and always provided a lovely view of the Mediterranean Sea. The room also has loads of storage space, it also has a safe for keeping valuable items in such as passports, documents etc. The room also a phone and a television. The television not only allows you to watch tv but also allows you to book shows/restaurants, contact your steward, organise shore excursions and much more. The phone was also useful. If you needed to contact another room you simply just called the room number they were staying in. We used this a lot for phoning the stateroom my father and brother were staying in which was on the port side of the ship.

The dining rooms on the ship were quite nice. We tried The Manhattan Room, Taste and O'Sheehan's. The Manhattan Room and Taste both has very similar menus, whereas O'Sheehan's offered more pub grub style food which is what my family enjoy more than fine dining. I also tried Shanghai's one night with my mother. I had some delicious spring rolls and kung pao chicken. If you like oriental food, I definitely recommend it.

Service within the ship was always excellent. Sometimes you will have to wait at the bar for a while, depending on the time of the day and which bar you go to. Waves Bar and Spice H2O tend to be quite busy as they are on deck 15 where most people spend the day. All of the waiters and waitresses are very friendly and speedy with their service.

The route the cruise takes means that the first day you get on at Barcelona is a sailing day. If you're looking to sunbathe, you may get to deck 15/16 quick because the loungers get taken up very fast. However, the 2nd day is a port day so you will notice more loungers are available as people will be going on shore excursions.

The shore excursions are all very well organised. You can book tickets at the service desk on the 5th deck beside the Atrium. Here you will receive your tickets and information on meeting times and location. If you are going on a guided tour, you will be provided with a sticker which has a number on it corresponding to your bus number. It is very simple and well planned. Make sure you always bring your Norwegian Epic pass anytime you go off ship and some form of ID.

If you do go on any of the excursions or decide to get off at a port to look around by yourself, I guarantee you will provided with some beautiful scenery, architecture and views. Rome and Monaco are two beautiful cities I had the pleasure to visit but it is entirely up to you what excursions you choose to go on. All of them are 100% worth the money and are very well organised.

As a first time cruiser I have to say this has been a pretty unforgettable holiday. The Norwegian Epic truly does live up to its name and I hope anyone who decides to take the West Med cruise has as much fun as I did. I really hope I get to cruise on the Epic again in the future or another NCL ship!

Thank you NCL for this amazing experience.
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