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Norwegian Joy Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
282 Reviews

Fabulous first time cruise to Alaska

Norwegian Joy Cruise Review by HikingAdventurer

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Aug 2019
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Mid-ship Balcony Stateroom

It was our first time on a cruise and decided to go to Alaska. My husband wasn't keen on taking a cruise and ended up pleasantly surprised that he wasn't bored or got cabin fever.

We couldn't go into Endicott Arm and see the glaciers because Mother Nature wouldn't cooperate. Too foggy to safely go in there and out. I respect the Captain's decision on that one. Our highlight was seeing the orca and humpback whales up close on our whale quest in Juneau. I heard others say the whale watching at Icy Straight Point was also fabulous.

There were a few cranky people on the observation deck scolding others for holding a chair for a family member getting food or coming back to their seat. Give me a break people! You are supposed to be on vacation and not be the chair police!

I thought our time in Juneau was short (4 hours). The plan was to go to the glacier after that, so I believe that was why it was short. Although Icy Straight Point was cool, 4 hours would have been enough time. There is not much to do unless you decide to go whale watching or kayaking. The kayakers stayed in a large group near shore. I found the staff to be friendly and very customer service oriented on the ship. Victoria is a beautiful city!

All in all, we had a great time. The food was amazing and the specialty dining was fantastic. I had the best surf and turf at Cagney’s Steak House. We met new friends too which was a nice bonus.

HikingAdventurer's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
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Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Mid-ship Balcony Stateroom
Cabin BA 11852

Great cabin on the 11th floor. Having a balcony room was a must.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews


It was fun to walk around this town. We ate at the Fish House and had delicious fish and chips. Highly recommend eating lunch here.

Mendenhall Glacier

Had a short hour here so we didn't take the hike to the waterfall. If you have time, take the hike. The excursion folks said it would take 45 minutes, but 30 would have done it if you walked quickly.

View All 971 Mendenhall Glacier Reviews
Whale Watching

We were lucky to see orcas and humpback whales. The orcas are not seen on a regular basis- every 2-3 weeks, so we were lucky that day.

View All 906 Whale Watching Reviews
Icy Strait

There is not much to see here other than a walk into town. We heard the whale watching was fabulous here too.


I have been to Victoria many times. We did walk to places I hadn't been before. 17,000 steps of walking. If you haven't been, the sights on the excursion list are good to see. There is a hop on/hop off sightseeing bus you can buy tickets for on Government St. so that is a good option too.

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