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Norwegian Epic Cruise Review
4.5 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
4,228 Reviews

Amazing cruise for first time cruisers

Norwegian Epic Cruise Review by moppenheim85

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2018
  • Destination: the Western Mediterranean
  • Cabin Type: Mini-Suite with Balcony

My husband and I went on the Mediterranean cruise in May but I'm only getting around to writing a review now. This was our first ever cruise. We didn't really know what to expect, but we loved the itinerary and decided to book it.

Embarkation was quick and easy, much better than boarding a flight.

We loved the ship. We couldn't believe how big it was and it felt like you were on a moving town rather than on a boat. We thought it looked very new, and loved the decorations.

I didn't really like the buffet restaurant but my husband did. I found it too crowded and a bit overwhelming. Taste and Manhattan were both great. We didn't book tables and never had much of a wait. If we did have to wait we were given a buzzer, so we would go off somewhere else on the ship, have a drink, check out some of the entertainment, and head back to the restaurant when the buzzer went off. We loved the food. We also ate in the Chinese both the main Chinese restaurant and the noodle bar. Staff there were amazing and so accommodating. Although in the same venue they were quite different and it was worth going to both. We did have some on board credit which we hadn't used, so we went to Cagney's on the last night. Cagney's was absolutely amazing. We didn't want to leave, the food and the atmosphere were just incredible.

We had a beverage package which made the cruise stress free. Knowing there would be no big bill at the end. I thought the bar staff were great. And we seemed to get table service at loads of the different bars which we weren't expecting, but was a great surprise.

The entertainment was fantastic. We loved Priscilla. A lot of people walked out which surprised us. It was so well executed. I loved Burn the Floor, but my husband wasn't a big fan of it. We spent a lot of time at duelling pianos, and they were really talented, there was no request they couldn't sing. We spent one night at cirque, and this was well worth the extra money. I didn't really like having to rush our food down, but once the show started I could see why.

The gym was very spacious with amazing views. I tried a spin class but thought it wasn't great, and is quite expensive. The spin instructor seemed quite disappointed with the tip I gave. To be honest, it was probably the worst spin class I've ever done, and no one ever tips spin instructors in any gym I've been to, so I guessed what I thought was reasonable, but she looked so upset, and I left wishing I hadn't bothered with the class at all.

I thought the service everywhere was just fantastic. Obviously it's a huge ship and get busy, but there was never much of a wait.

At the ports we didn't do any of the NCL trips as they were exponentially more expensive than locally ran trips, which seemed very similar.

I would absolutely LOVE to travel with Norwegian cruise line again!

moppenheim85's Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Mini-Suite with Balcony
Cabin MD 11081

Great cabin. It's in a great location. The room was a good size. The bathroom situation was a bit weird but we got used to it. We found the room so comfortable, and it was great having a balcony. We LOVED our towel animals every night!

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Firenze Walking Tour

A lot of people were trying to squeeze in both Pisa and Florence on this stop. We just decided to head to Florence. We booked the NCL bus to the train station (small charge, but I can't recall now), and it was easy get the train into Florence. We met our walking tour guide (organised independently), and had a fantastic walking tour around Florence. The guided walk only cost 14 pounds each and was just brilliant. I would highly recommend this. It was easy then walk to the train station and then get the train back to Livorno where the NCL buses were waiting to take us back to the ship.

View All 18 Firenze Walking Tour Reviews

We didn't book a tour here. We had a great time wondering around and going into the different patisseries. We did jump on the touristy train and it brought you up to the old town with great views over the bay. There was a great atmosphere in Cannes as they were getting ready for the film festival. Brilliant stop.

Wine Tasting

Fantastic tour. In the whole group there were only 6 of us. We were collected from the port and driven through to the centre of the island. We arrived at a gorgeous old winery, and had a great tour and learnt loads about Mallorca wines. The tasting was in a great atmosphere and matched with canape style food. The bottles of wine you could buy at the winery were so reasonably priced. I was expecting a big price tag, but not at all. We were dropped back either to the ship or town centre when the wine tasting was over. The tour cost 45 pounds per person which I thought was a good price.

View All 21 Wine Tasting Reviews

Barcelona was amazing, but it was VERY tough to get out of the port! Make sure to get the port bus, and don't try to get a taxi - it was crazy! Also don't try to walk - it was so hard to walk through the massive crowds! One of the issues with this cruise, was that although we got on in Rome, must customers get on and off in Barcelona so it was a bit crazy!

We booked the hop on, hop off tour and saw loads of Barcelona. Our tickets (not booked through the ship), also gave us free entrance to la familia sagrada. La Familia Sagrada was absolutely astounding. The most amazing thing I saw during the whole cruise - don't miss it!

Amalfi Coast

We booked a private tour with Worldtours. It combined the Amalfi coast with Pompei. The Amalfi coast was beautiful. I wish we had more time in Pompei, and it was so packed that it was hard to enjoy. If I was going back I would seriously think about going to Herculaneum instead. Amazing day though.

View All 284 Amalfi Coast Reviews
Pompeii Walking Tour

As above

View All 505 Pompeii Walking Tour Reviews

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