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NCL was having a special - (cabin prices dropping and extra perks) - so why not book? I was apprehensive about booking 10 - nights ... kept thinking to myself - I would get board and could not stand being on the ship a second longer! HOWEVER, to my surprise the 10-nights flew by and soon I had to get back to reality aka - work. EMBARKMENT: absolutely sucked! Apparently there was an undisclosed issue at the port that delayed arriving port passengers from to go through security and board the ship. Funny thing is - while standing in line over three hours outside of the pier just to pass through security - everyone was in good spirits. THE CABIN: I booked a Haven Spa Suite (early Christmas present for myself). My cabin, the service (Mohammed - butler and Johnitto - cabin steward) lived up the Haven name - BUT, as the only person in the cabin I even found it a bit tight for me. Nice comfy round mattress and spa tub in the room (AWESOME) - BUT, they just took up way too much space. If you wanted to relax in your cabin, you had to sit on the bed. For the money spent on a suite, a Haven Suite - there really should be a separate seating area. DINING: LaCuccina -- I had a 5:30 PM reservation - perfect time to get a table overlooking the front of the ship. OMG - what a breathtaking view! If I had known what an amazing view could have been had - I would have dined there ALL 10 nights. I also dined at Cagney's, Haven Restaurant and O'Sheehan's. I enjoyed the quality of the food and service provided by each venue, BUT - everything was overshadowed by the view from LaCuccina. If I ever sail the EPIC again, I definitely would definitely dine in whatever restaurant is occupying that space! ON BOARD ENTERTAINMENT: Can't comment - did not attend any shows or events. I am that obscure passenger who does not need a "broadway show, comedy or musical or dance" program to enjoy a cruise. SHORE EXCURSIONS/PORTS: Yes, I am one of those cruisers who book overpriced excursions provided by the cruise lines. Call it peace of mind, having a translator or just too scared to book with local vendors - its what I do. I supposed that since I studied History, Anthropology and Archeology in college - I booked four of the following excursions: Ocho Rios -- Bob Marley Experience: I have taken this excursion three times - for me, it is about the views as we drive through the mountains to reach Nine Miles - Marley's final resting place. BTW - I am that less than 1% of visitors on this tour who is not interested in the "smoke" or feeling the necessity of making a Marley pilgrimage. I found that this excursion gave me a peak into the lives of local communities and their way of life. Harvest Kaye -- Monkey River Eco Tour: I was a bit unprepared for this excursion. I guess I missed the part of the description where it said to wear long pants and sleeves and good walking shoes. I wore two out of three - glad I wore sneakers (I'll tell you why in a minute). The high-speed 30 minute boat ride through mangrove trees from the pier to Monkey River - was great. Then we got to the mouth of the Monkey River and slowly made our way several miles (not sure of the distance) upriver. Our tour guide and his boat operator - pointed out wild life, vegetation while sharing personal and historical insights of Monkey River. Then we stopped (this is part of the excursion I missed/didn't read - and why one really needed to wear long pants, shirt and very good walking shoes). Apparently, part of this excursion involved trekking through the jungle/rain forest. On this day - we were very very lucky as temperatures were in the 70s and no mosquitoes (when we started). We met up with two other tours - everyone heading about 1/2 mile into the jungle searching for howler monkeys. BTW, I forgot to mention as we made our way towards the howler monkeys - the ground was muddy, and we were advised against from reaching out/grabbing any hanging vegetation as it could have spikes (hence the need to for the long sleeves and pants). Slowly we made our way into a clearing where we were able to see the howler monkeys on tree tops. Once we got there - guides were assisting all tourists - not just the ones in their tour group - but everyone who looked like they needed assistance (MUCH APPRECIATED). We weren't at the clearing very long when we noticed that temperatures started to rise and the mosquitoes and other flying biting critters started to return (glad I used bug spray - some did not and paid the price!) As we headed back to our river boat - it seemed like the ground got muddier? Maybe - maybe not? In any event - glad I wore sneakers and not flip flops as I saw on other tourists. As we made our way back through the jungle, you could feel the temperature rising (good thing we were at the end of this part of the tour). We boarded the boat and quickly made our way towards the pier. We stopped in a small village where folks could buy trinkets, drinks, food and use the restroom. I spent my time cleaning my sneakers as the caked with mud. George Town -- Trolley Tour: I booked this excursion as a starting point of where I wanted to go back and visit once the tour ended. Unfortunately, since we were in port on a Sunday - 95% of port buildings/businesses were closed. Costa Maya -- Chaccoben Mayan Ruins: For me, this excursion never disappoints. Where else can you still visit a ruin - climb steps that are centuries old? Cozumel -- Jose Cuervo Tequila Tasting Experience: I do not like tequila - not sure why I booked this excursion, but I did. I found the tour guide and the experience learning how to taste tequila fun! OVERALL: I was pleasantly surprised with EPIC's crew and ship - despite it no longer ranking as one of NCL's newer ships in the fleet. I was pampered and so relaxed that I never got board or felt that the cruise dragged on longer than it needed to be. I can't wait to book another NCL cruise (Haven if I can manage) - it just won't be Haven Spa suite.

10-Nights - didn't get stir crazy!

Norwegian Epic Cruise Review by 5unshine365

Trip Details
NCL was having a special - (cabin prices dropping and extra perks) - so why not book? I was apprehensive about booking 10 - nights ... kept thinking to myself - I would get board and could not stand being on the ship a second longer! HOWEVER, to my surprise the 10-nights flew by and soon I had to get back to reality aka - work.

EMBARKMENT: absolutely sucked! Apparently there was an undisclosed issue at the port that delayed arriving port passengers from to go through security and board the ship. Funny thing is - while standing in line over three hours outside of the pier just to pass through security - everyone was in good spirits.

THE CABIN: I booked a Haven Spa Suite (early Christmas present for myself). My cabin, the service (Mohammed - butler and Johnitto - cabin steward) lived up the Haven name - BUT, as the only person in the cabin I even found it a bit tight for me. Nice comfy round mattress and spa tub in the room (AWESOME) - BUT, they just took up way too much space. If you wanted to relax in your cabin, you had to sit on the bed. For the money spent on a suite, a Haven Suite - there really should be a separate seating area.

DINING:

LaCuccina -- I had a 5:30 PM reservation - perfect time to get a table overlooking the front of the ship. OMG - what a breathtaking view! If I had known what an amazing view could have been had - I would have dined there ALL 10 nights.

I also dined at Cagney's, Haven Restaurant and O'Sheehan's. I enjoyed the quality of the food and service provided by each venue, BUT - everything was overshadowed by the view from LaCuccina. If I ever sail the EPIC again, I definitely would definitely dine in whatever restaurant is occupying that space!

ON BOARD ENTERTAINMENT: Can't comment - did not attend any shows or events. I am that obscure passenger who does not need a "broadway show, comedy or musical or dance" program to enjoy a cruise.

SHORE EXCURSIONS/PORTS: Yes, I am one of those cruisers who book overpriced excursions provided by the cruise lines. Call it peace of mind, having a translator or just too scared to book with local vendors - its what I do. I supposed that since I studied History, Anthropology and Archeology in college - I booked four of the following excursions:

Ocho Rios -- Bob Marley Experience: I have taken this excursion three times - for me, it is about the views as we drive through the mountains to reach Nine Miles - Marley's final resting place. BTW - I am that less than 1% of visitors on this tour who is not interested in the "smoke" or feeling the necessity of making a Marley pilgrimage. I found that this excursion gave me a peak into the lives of local communities and their way of life.

Harvest Kaye -- Monkey River Eco Tour: I was a bit unprepared for this excursion. I guess I missed the part of the description where it said to wear long pants and sleeves and good walking shoes. I wore two out of three - glad I wore sneakers (I'll tell you why in a minute).

The high-speed 30 minute boat ride through mangrove trees from the pier to Monkey River - was great. Then we got to the mouth of the Monkey River and slowly made our way several miles (not sure of the distance) upriver. Our tour guide and his boat operator - pointed out wild life, vegetation while sharing personal and historical insights of Monkey River.

Then we stopped (this is part of the excursion I missed/didn't read - and why one really needed to wear long pants, shirt and very good walking shoes). Apparently, part of this excursion involved trekking through the jungle/rain forest. On this day - we were very very lucky as temperatures were in the 70s and no mosquitoes (when we started). We met up with two other tours - everyone heading about 1/2 mile into the jungle searching for howler monkeys. BTW, I forgot to mention as we made our way towards the howler monkeys - the ground was muddy, and we were advised against from reaching out/grabbing any hanging vegetation as it could have spikes (hence the need to for the long sleeves and pants).

Slowly we made our way into a clearing where we were able to see the howler monkeys on tree tops. Once we got there - guides were assisting all tourists - not just the ones in their tour group - but everyone who looked like they needed assistance (MUCH APPRECIATED). We weren't at the clearing very long when we noticed that temperatures started to rise and the mosquitoes and other flying biting critters started to return (glad I used bug spray - some did not and paid the price!) As we headed back to our river boat - it seemed like the ground got muddier? Maybe - maybe not? In any event - glad I wore sneakers and not flip flops as I saw on other tourists.

As we made our way back through the jungle, you could feel the temperature rising (good thing we were at the end of this part of the tour). We boarded the boat and quickly made our way towards the pier. We stopped in a small village where folks could buy trinkets, drinks, food and use the restroom. I spent my time cleaning my sneakers as the caked with mud.

George Town -- Trolley Tour: I booked this excursion as a starting point of where I wanted to go back and visit once the tour ended. Unfortunately, since we were in port on a Sunday - 95% of port buildings/businesses were closed.

Costa Maya -- Chaccoben Mayan Ruins: For me, this excursion never disappoints. Where else can you still visit a ruin - climb steps that are centuries old?

Cozumel -- Jose Cuervo Tequila Tasting Experience: I do not like tequila - not sure why I booked this excursion, but I did. I found the tour guide and the experience learning how to taste tequila fun!

OVERALL: I was pleasantly surprised with EPIC's crew and ship - despite it no longer ranking as one of NCL's newer ships in the fleet. I was pampered and so relaxed that I never got board or felt that the cruise dragged on longer than it needed to be. I can't wait to book another NCL cruise (Haven if I can manage) - it just won't be Haven Spa suite.
5unshine365’s Full Rating Summary
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Dining
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Cabin Review

Spa Suite
Cabin H9 14137
I booked a Haven Spa Suite (early Christmas present for myself). My cabin, the service (Mohammed - butler and Johnitto - cabin steward) lived up the Haven name - BUT, as the only person in the cabin I even found it a bit tight for me. Nice comfy round mattress and spa tub in the room (AWESOME) - BUT, they just took up way too much space. If you wanted to relax in your cabin, you had to sit on the bed - just did not seem right?!? For the money spent on a Haven Suite - there really should be a separate seating area.
Deck 14 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Chacchoben Mayan Ruins
    For me, this excursion never disappoints. Where else can you still visit a ruin - climb steps that are centuries old?
    View All 353 Chacchoben Mayan Ruins Reviews
  • Tequila Tasting
    I do not like tequila - not sure why I booked this excursion, but I did. I found the tour guide and the experience of learning how to taste tequila fun!
    View All 119 Tequila Tasting Reviews
  • Trolley Roger
    I took this excursion as a starting point of where I wanted to go back and visit once the tour ended. Unfortunately, since we were in port on a Sunday - 95% of port buildings/businesses were closed.

    I enjoyed the "tour" - just disappointed that so many businesses/shops were closed.
    View All 29 Trolley Roger Reviews
  • Harvest Caye
    I was a bit unprepared for this excursion. I guess I missed the part of the description where it said to wear long pants and sleeves and good walking shoes. I wore two out of three - glad I wore sneakers (I'll tell you why in a minute).

    The high-speed 30 minute boat ride through mangrove trees from the pier to Monkey River - was great. Then we got to the mouth of the Monkey River and slowly made our way several miles (not sure of the distance) upriver. Our tour guide and his boat operator - pointed out wild life, vegetation while sharing personal and historical insights of Monkey River.

    Then we stopped (this is part of the excursion I missed/didn't read - and why one really needed to wear long pants, shirt and very good walking shoes). Apparently, part of this excursion involved trekking through the jungle/rain forest. On this day - we were very very lucky as temperatures were in the 70s and no mosquitoes (when we started). We met up with two other tours - everyone heading about 1/2 mile into the jungle searching for howler monkeys. BTW, I forgot to mention as we made our way towards the howler monkeys - the ground was muddy, and we were advised against from reaching out/grabbing any hanging vegetation as it could have spikes (hence the need to for the long sleeves and pants).

    Slowly we made our way into a clearing where we were able to see the howler monkeys in the tree tops. Once we got there - guides were assisting all tourists - not just the ones in their tour group - but everyone who looked like they needed assistance (MUCH APPRECIATED). We weren't at the clearing very long when we noticed that temperatures started to rise and the mosquitoes and other flying biting critters started to return (glad I used bug spray - some did not and paid the price!) As we headed back to our river boat - it seemed like the ground got muddier? Maybe - maybe not? In any event - glad I wore sneakers and not flip flops as I saw on other tourists.

    As we made our way back through the jungle, you could feel the temperature rising (good thing we were at the end of this part of the tour). We boarded the boat and quickly made our way towards the pier. We stopped in a small village where folks could buy trinkets, drinks, food and use the restroom. I spent my time cleaning my sneakers as the caked with mud.
    View All 1,145 Harvest Caye Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Harvest Caye Cruise Port Review
  • Ocho Rios
    I have taken this excursion three times - for me, it is about the views as we drive through the mountains to reach Nine Miles - Marley's final resting place. BTW - I am that less than 1% of visitors on this tour who is not interested in the "smoke" or feeling the necessity of making a Marley pilgrimage. I found that this excursion gave me a peak into the lives of local communities and their way of life.
    View All 13,216 Ocho Rios Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Ocho Rios Cruise Port Review