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I chose this cruise with the help of my travel agent, mostly because I wanted to go to Alaska and because the ship is very new. I arrived to Seattle in the early evening the night before the cruise since I have been to Seattle previously. I stayed at an airport hotel and had their shuttle return me to the terminal in the morning to get my pre-purchased cruise transfer. I found the embarkation process very overwhelming. I had to check in about 3 times just to get to the waiting area at the airport terminal. Seating option is to sit on a freezing cold cement bench until your shuttle boarding number is called. Signage is poor. The entire process is poor. The ship is beautiful. There are many activities; however, only about half of them are included. Talk about nickel and diming. Since this was my first cruise, I couldn't help but compare it to the all-inclusive resorts in the Caribbean which are a one-stop shop. Yes, it is possible to not partake of any additional activities at a cost, but sometimes there is just not anything else going on and you are on vacation, so you cave in. My cabin was a balcony room towards the front of the ship. I had heard that mid-ship is better for stability; however, most of the cruise was smooth water. It was very clean, and staff are very responsive, but they do not anticipate your needs the way that they do at the all-inclusives in the Caribbean. I asked for a mattress topper for my mattress upon arrival and it was provided which was a nice benefit. I give high marks to entertainment and activities. I thought they did a great job with those. I also found that most of the staff seemed very robotic and not particularly happy looking. There were, of course, exceptions such as cabin stewards and waitstaff; however, any employees working at any type of desk never smiled or were personable. They made me feel like a number. Ports and shore excursions were the highlight of the trip. Would I go again? Not sure. If so, I would want to try a different cruise line for a comparison.

First Time Cruiser and First Time to Alaska

Norwegian Bliss Cruise Review by qz2z

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: September 2018
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Balcony Stateroom
I chose this cruise with the help of my travel agent, mostly because I wanted to go to Alaska and because the ship is very new.

I arrived to Seattle in the early evening the night before the cruise since I have been to Seattle previously. I stayed at an airport hotel and had their shuttle return me to the terminal in the morning to get my pre-purchased cruise transfer. I found the embarkation process very overwhelming. I had to check in about 3 times just to get to the waiting area at the airport terminal. Seating option is to sit on a freezing cold cement bench until your shuttle boarding number is called. Signage is poor. The entire process is poor.

The ship is beautiful. There are many activities; however, only about half of them are included. Talk about nickel and diming. Since this was my first cruise, I couldn't help but compare it to the all-inclusive resorts in the Caribbean which are a one-stop shop. Yes, it is possible to not partake of any additional activities at a cost, but sometimes there is just not anything else going on and you are on vacation, so you cave in.

My cabin was a balcony room towards the front of the ship. I had heard that mid-ship is better for stability; however, most of the cruise was smooth water. It was very clean, and staff are very responsive, but they do not anticipate your needs the way that they do at the all-inclusives in the Caribbean. I asked for a mattress topper for my mattress upon arrival and it was provided which was a nice benefit.

I give high marks to entertainment and activities. I thought they did a great job with those.

I also found that most of the staff seemed very robotic and not particularly happy looking. There were, of course, exceptions such as cabin stewards and waitstaff; however, any employees working at any type of desk never smiled or were personable. They made me feel like a number.

Ports and shore excursions were the highlight of the trip.

Would I go again? Not sure. If so, I would want to try a different cruise line for a comparison.
qz2z’s Full Rating Summary
Value For Money
Embarkation
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Cabin Review

Balcony Stateroom
Cabin BF
Cabin was very clean. Balcony was priceless and also a highlight of the trip. The weather was very pleasant and the scenery was gorgeous. It was exciting to watch the ship arrive and depart from the ports. Unfortunately I did not see any whales or the Northern Lights but it was nice to know that the possibility was there.
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Mendenhall Glacier
    It was a beautiful day. It is about a mile and a half optional walk to the waterfall but well worth the effort. The tour was very informative, and our driver was great. We did see more bald eagles along the way, but they were perched on top of light posts as opposed to in trees.
    View All 889 Mendenhall Glacier Reviews
  • Mount Roberts Tramway
    The Glacier and Tramway combo tour was sold out; however, we had time on the Glacier-only tour to do the Tram on our own. It is right in the heart of town. We paid $30 US each with our AAA card for an all-day pass; however, we only used it once. It is about a 5-7 minute right up. There is a gift shop, restaurant, and restrooms in addition to the great view. Well worth it in my opinion.
    View All 235 Mount Roberts Tramway Reviews
  • Trolley Tour
    Nice way to see and hear about the town and the totem pole park. There isn't much to it, but it was a good way to see the totem poles and hear some history. We stopped to see salmon swimming upstream. We also got great photos of a bald eagle in a tree.
    View All 30 Trolley Tour Reviews
  • Street Car Tour
    Tour in a vintage souped-up school bus. Driver/guide dressed in vintage clothing. Very entertaining. Stops at scenic overlook and boot hill graveyard. Funny and interesting.
    View All 44 Street Car Tour Reviews
  • Yukon Van Tour
    Such beautiful scenery! The weather was absolutely perfect. Our driver was awesome. He even made a U-turn so that we could go back to take photos from the bus of a mama bear and her 2 cubs who were munching on berries on the side of the road. However, the included lunch was not good at all. It consisted of flavorless potato salad, 3 types of sandwiches, and dried up banana bread. By the time we got there, they had run out of most of the food. It was sparsely replenished. Ugh.
    View All 126 Yukon Van Tour Reviews
  • Victoria
    Buses were plentiful and readily available. Made 2 stops: 1 at harbor, the other in the shopping district. Drivers were very courteous.
    View All 12,979 Victoria Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Victoria Cruise Port Review