1. Home
  2. Cruise Reviews
  3. Norwegian Bliss
Overall the Bliss was a nice ship but like many things there were pros and cons. Pros: * My family enjoyed the two shows we attended, Havana and Jersey Boys. Be sure to make your reservations as soon as you board of ahead of boarding where possible * We enjoyed the laser tag battle as well as the racetrack. If I recall the laser tag battle had 2 rounds of 5 minutes each. My team won both rounds so I don't know if there is a third if the score is tied. Regardless, it was long enough and a fun time. Racetrack is around 10 minutes long, we typically got in 8 to 9 laps each race. Cart seating (for a single cart) worked even for a big guy like me (6'2", 300 lbs) which is something I get anxious about at times. Buy any packages before you board the ship, they may "run out" before you get to the counter once you board. Again make your reservations once you get on board so you get your preferred time * Specialty dining food was especially good at Los Lobos and Teppenyaki. Cagney's was good but not great. We had bought the specialty dining package for 3 restaurants and felt it was worth it. * Unlimited drink package and beverage package worked well and we didn't feel like we were being constantly questioned about every drink. Cons: * Schedule, schedule, schedule. Everything is regimented. Reservations for specialty dining, reservations for laser tag, racetrack, shows, on top of any shore excursions made this the most time bound cruise I've ever taken. I'm a planner by nature so usually I like knowing what is what but I just felt like I never had time to just do whatever whenever. If you don't like all the reservations then plan to do less and miss a few things. * Excursion disembarkation - on our last port (Nassau) the ship docked at 12 noon, and our excursion was 12:30p. They closed off decks 4 (gangway deck) and the deck above it, deck 5 for some reason - forcing massive lines to form and snake through deck 6, which is normally fairly populated anyways due to the atrium. We made it to our excursion in time, but had to really powerwalk down one of the longest piers in the Caribbean. * Food in dining rooms was fair. Not great, not bad. Fairly bland, and not a huge variety of cuisines. No steak and lobster nights that we saw, although to be fair it may have happened on a night when we were specialty dining. * Buffet food was, well buffet food. Didn't seem like there were any active cooking stations like where you could get Chinese food made to order and so forth. * Time changes not well publicized. I so happens noticed that at one point before reaching Tortola a note in the newsletter stating time was changing one hour forward. Many guests did not get the memo and missed shows and other reservations. Time changed back again after St. Thomas, seemed a little more well known second time * Staff seemed to be henpecked by supervisors. general atmosphere didn't seem as lighthearted as I've seen on other cruises * Stateroom was nice in general, but closest is at end of couch/bed, and in our case since we had 4 in our room, we use the flip down bunk making it difficult to access the closet. * King bed but was pretty much hard as a board and not comfortable. * Bathroom was decent, while the plexiglass type shower enclosure looks nice and was functional, it made the space between the toilet, the counter on the right and the shower plexi on the left fairly small and uncomfortable for a large person. Would have preferred a shower curtain personally for more flexibility in the space. * Balcony was of average size, but the two deck chairs were not comfortable and neither reclined at all. * Noise from deck parties was pretty obnoxious until about midnight. If you go to bed early or don't want to hear it, recommend booking lower deck cabin. We were deck 14 mid-ship. * Lastly, and I hate to say it, we personally witnessed violence on board and I heard of another incident afterwards. My wife and I witnessed a man destroy a electronic paper towel dispenser with a large water bottle after the door to the bathroom he was in was opened. Shocked both me and my wife, thankfully the water bottle that became a projectile missed hitting my wife. Reported it to security, who knows what happened next. Other incident that I heard from a witness was that a man punched one of the crew when they sprayed his hands with hand cleaning solution that they used whenever anyone was entering the buffet areas. I guess it can happen on any ship and one of this size probably happens more than I would normally be aware of, but seemed like there was over reliance on cameras and less on human security personnel. Definitely would say there were more supervisors in the dining rooms nagging servers than security personnel.

Good but could have been better

Norwegian Bliss Cruise Review by glovesave39

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: January 2019
  • Destination: Eastern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Balcony Stateroom
Overall the Bliss was a nice ship but like many things there were pros and cons.

Pros:

* My family enjoyed the two shows we attended, Havana and Jersey Boys. Be sure to make your reservations as soon as you board of ahead of boarding where possible

* We enjoyed the laser tag battle as well as the racetrack. If I recall the laser tag battle had 2 rounds of 5 minutes each. My team won both rounds so I don't know if there is a third if the score is tied. Regardless, it was long enough and a fun time. Racetrack is around 10 minutes long, we typically got in 8 to 9 laps each race. Cart seating (for a single cart) worked even for a big guy like me (6'2", 300 lbs) which is something I get anxious about at times. Buy any packages before you board the ship, they may "run out" before you get to the counter once you board. Again make your reservations once you get on board so you get your preferred time

* Specialty dining food was especially good at Los Lobos and Teppenyaki. Cagney's was good but not great. We had bought the specialty dining package for 3 restaurants and felt it was worth it.

* Unlimited drink package and beverage package worked well and we didn't feel like we were being constantly questioned about every drink.



Cons:

* Schedule, schedule, schedule. Everything is regimented. Reservations for specialty dining, reservations for laser tag, racetrack, shows, on top of any shore excursions made this the most time bound cruise I've ever taken. I'm a planner by nature so usually I like knowing what is what but I just felt like I never had time to just do whatever whenever. If you don't like all the reservations then plan to do less and miss a few things.

* Excursion disembarkation - on our last port (Nassau) the ship docked at 12 noon, and our excursion was 12:30p. They closed off decks 4 (gangway deck) and the deck above it, deck 5 for some reason - forcing massive lines to form and snake through deck 6, which is normally fairly populated anyways due to the atrium. We made it to our excursion in time, but had to really powerwalk down one of the longest piers in the Caribbean.

* Food in dining rooms was fair. Not great, not bad. Fairly bland, and not a huge variety of cuisines. No steak and lobster nights that we saw, although to be fair it may have happened on a night when we were specialty dining.

* Buffet food was, well buffet food. Didn't seem like there were any active cooking stations like where you could get Chinese food made to order and so forth.

* Time changes not well publicized. I so happens noticed that at one point before reaching Tortola a note in the newsletter stating time was changing one hour forward. Many guests did not get the memo and missed shows and other reservations. Time changed back again after St. Thomas, seemed a little more well known second time

* Staff seemed to be henpecked by supervisors. general atmosphere didn't seem as lighthearted as I've seen on other cruises

* Stateroom was nice in general, but closest is at end of couch/bed, and in our case since we had 4 in our room, we use the flip down bunk making it difficult to access the closet.

* King bed but was pretty much hard as a board and not comfortable.

* Bathroom was decent, while the plexiglass type shower enclosure looks nice and was functional, it made the space between the toilet, the counter on the right and the shower plexi on the left fairly small and uncomfortable for a large person. Would have preferred a shower curtain personally for more flexibility in the space.

* Balcony was of average size, but the two deck chairs were not comfortable and neither reclined at all.

* Noise from deck parties was pretty obnoxious until about midnight. If you go to bed early or don't want to hear it, recommend booking lower deck cabin. We were deck 14 mid-ship.

* Lastly, and I hate to say it, we personally witnessed violence on board and I heard of another incident afterwards. My wife and I witnessed a man destroy a electronic paper towel dispenser with a large water bottle after the door to the bathroom he was in was opened. Shocked both me and my wife, thankfully the water bottle that became a projectile missed hitting my wife. Reported it to security, who knows what happened next. Other incident that I heard from a witness was that a man punched one of the crew when they sprayed his hands with hand cleaning solution that they used whenever anyone was entering the buffet areas. I guess it can happen on any ship and one of this size probably happens more than I would normally be aware of, but seemed like there was over reliance on cameras and less on human security personnel. Definitely would say there were more supervisors in the dining rooms nagging servers than security personnel.
glovesave39’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Service
Onboard Experience
Free Price Drop Alerts
Get Norwegian Bliss price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email

Cabin Review

Balcony Stateroom
Cabin BD 14190
* Stateroom was nice in general, but closest is at end of couch/bed, and in our case since we had 4 in our room, we use the flip down bunk making it difficult to access the closet.

* King bed but was pretty much hard as a board and not comfortable.

* Bathroom was decent, while the plexiglass type shower enclosure looks nice and was functional, it made the space between the toilet, the counter on the right and the shower plexi on the left fairly small and uncomfortable for a large person. Would have preferred a shower curtain personally for more flexibility in the space.

* Balcony was of average size, but the two deck chairs were not comfortable and neither reclined at all.
Deck 14 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Miami
    Easy embarkation. We were super early which meant waiting for our room to be ready, but also gave time to make reservations for onboard activities
    View All 2,405 Miami Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Miami Cruise Port Review
  • Snorkeling
    After a fairly long bus ride (maybe 30 to 40 min) we arrived at Stewart Cove's. Appeared to be a more diver centric place which was cool by us. Short boat ride out to first stop which was an underwater statue and where a plane from one of the Jaws movies was submerged. Not a ton to see at the stop. Second stop was a much more expansive reef area with plenty to look at. Not as cool as Tortola but still pretty nice. Third stop was a shipwreck where Caribbean reef sharks are located. Everyone gently got in water (don't splash) while the sharks were entertained by a bait box hanging 20 feet below us. They were not realy being fed, but more so distracted by it. We all had to cling to a buoy line which made it very crowded and too personal with some of our fellow snorkelers at times. Still very cool to see these majestic creatures glide almost effortlessly through the water. At the end of the snorkel they intentionally beat on the water and splashed to attract the sharks up to the surface so we could see them up close.
    View All 217 Snorkeling Reviews
  • Snuba
    Did the Snuba experience at Coral World with Tammy. She took her time educating and preparing us for the excursion, which was great. We had done snuba before but all of her training was welcomed. As for the experience itself, we entered the water from a crowded beach (Coki beach?) which was ok but had to avoid swimmers. Current underwater was strong and made it more difficult, but Tammy constantly checked on us which I appreciated. Not as much to see as in Tortola, I asked if the hurricanes had destroyed things but Tammy said that a noreaster like stork came through with a wave that destroyed a lot of corals.
    View All 19 Snuba Reviews
  • Tortola
    Took the Norman Island snorkeling excursion. Probably the best snorkeling experience I have ever had.
    View All 1,383 Tortola Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Tortola Cruise Port Review