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Norwegian Star Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
2,612 Reviews

Norwegian Star Shines and Fizzles

Norwegian Star Cruise Review by brianandlynn

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Apr 2019
  • Destination: Transatlantic
  • Cabin Type: Balcony

We chose this cruise because the itinerary was appealing and it had good value.

We did not have time to explore Miami before we left, but we had been there before and found it to be a nice city if you can handle high humidity. Embarkation went fairly smoothly. We were on the ship by 12 enjoying our first cocktail of the cruise. On the other hand, disembarkation was a complete nightmare. It was the worst experience we have EVER had leaving a ship. The original, final port was supposed to be Barcelona. However, at some point in time, the final destination was changed to Tarragona with Barcelona in parenthesis, which on other cruises indicates an alternate name for the same city or a city located close at hand. Ex. Thira (Santorini) The reason our ship was shunted to Tarragona, which as it turns out, was more than an hour away from Barcelona, was because Norwegian had also scheduled the Epic, a mega ship with our EXACT itinerary. GRRRR! Just hours away from Epic, the Jade was also scheduled & appeared in port at least once with us. That meant a mad scramble for cabs and overcrowding in historic sites and eateries. Also, the Epic was so monstrous, that Barcelona could not accommodate both ships. That meant, our ship was dumped at an industrial port with no clue how to process passengers through immigration. It was a mad house. We couldn't leave on foot because of security. We waited for our own charter bus they wouldn't let in, because all the ship's shuttle buses had priority. (Norwegian had offered to "help" people get to Barcelona for a mere $30 pp. via their shuttles.) While trying to exit the ship, crew members had been given conflicting information about how to direct people and there was an area where 2 different lines were snaking in opposite directions. In short, it was an awful experience and by the time we got our pre-reserved ride, we arrived in Barcelona 5 hours later. This disembarkation fiasco and the double booking of other Norwegian ships at the same ports, will be at the forefront of our minds when considering whether to sail with Norwegian again.


brianandlynn's Full Rating Summary
Cabin
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Service
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Cabin Review

Balcony
Cabin BX 10188

Bed was very hard, but the room steward had mercy on us and rustled up a foam topper.

Balcony was smallish, and chairs did not adjust for napping. Limited plug space and mirrors for dressing. Also, the same movies kept running, and there was no way to review your bill on the television.


Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

took a taxi to Vilia Franco do Campo. It was a lovely area and away from the crowds at Ponta Delgada. Took a Zodiac out to scope out whales and dolphins. The crew was highly professional and concerned about safety. After a briefing we went out and were fortunate enough to see a fin whale and at least 50 common dolphins and their little babies. Fantastic experience. I highly recommend it.

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Madeira (Funchal)

Gorgeous island. We hired a cab for the day. He was a native and showed us all over the place. Lots to see. I didn't want to leave.

Seville

We walked to the train station (about 30 minutes) and took a train to Seville. It took about an hour and a half to get there. I highly recommend the train system. It is cheap, and dependable. Seville was having some kind of festival and there were many women and girls dressed in traditional costume there.

Gorgeous scenery, and it we had a lovely time exploring. Make sure you allow enough time to get back to the train station and factor in the hour and a half travel time back to Cadiz, plus walking time back to the ship.

Malaga

We went to the seafood market and also had churros and hot chocolate nearby at the Casa Aranda

Cartagena (Spain)

We went to ARQUA (National Museum of Underwater Archeology) It was pretty cool, but mostly had some old coins and samples of ancient Phoenician writing on ivory tusks and stuff. Apparently, the Casa de la Fortuna, was a cool thing to go see with it's many murals and mosaics. We will check it out next time, if we are lucky enough to visit again.


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brianandlynn
1 Reviews Written
3 Helpful Votes
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