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We travelled in late Sep - Baltic sailing. Despite the fact that temperatures on this later season sailing were quite cool (10 C – 16C), I would say that this is an excellent time to do a Baltic cruise. Firstly, there are far less crowds and secondly, the cruise fare is more reasonable. We were also able to secure a Haven 2 bed cabin at an excellent fare. Embarkation We took a taxi from Copenhagen centre (Hotel Bethel) to the Oceankaj port where the Getaway was berthed. Embarkation was quick and easy and NCL are very efficient. We arrived just after 11am and were on the ship before 12pm. Haven guests could either have lunch in the Haven restaurant or at Margaritaville (complimentary). We decided to go Margaritaville and the service was excellent and the shrimps were delicious: large, firm, tasty. This was the standard throughout the ship – wherever we had shrimp it was the same excellent quality. We spent an hour exploring the ship and our bags were already at our suite by 2pm so we unpacked. The mandatory safety drill was at 4pm and this is the one area that NCL could drastically improve. The drill took at least an hour because all the information was repeated in three different languages. Many people are rude and talk over the languages that they don’t understand and the crew then has to request them to please be considerate of other guests. There was not enough space for seating in O’Sheehans for everyone and it was tough standing for all that time. In addition, the crew would not let us sit on the floor. So I suggest that you try to get to your meeting point before the required time so that you don’t end up like us standing all the time. Further, the crew member who demonstrated how to put on the life jacket literally got “stage fright” and was unable to do it correctly. He tried 3 times, before another crew member took over and correctly demonstrated how to do it. Many people just put their heads down on the tables in O’Sheehans and blotted the “noise” out. It just got too much. But hang in there, because after a bad start, it was all positive after that! Haven 2 bed family suite 15108 We absolutely loved our suite. With 2 adults and 2 children, there is ample space and it really is wonderful for the children to have their own room and bathroom. Our steward (Moncito), set up the Pullman bed for our 10 year old son (similar to a bunk) and made the sleeper couch below into a comfortable bed for our 12 year old daughter. There is ample storage space in the suite. The king bed in the main bedroom is the most comfortable bed I have had in over 10 cruises. We requested memory foam pillows and this was handled by our Butler, Stefan. Stefan also made sure we had coffee pods for the Nespresso machine and brought a lovely selection of snacks each afternoon (including choc chip cookies which were the best!) Stefan really was an excellent butler – always willing to go the extra mile and always offering helpful advice. The master bathroom in this suite is absolutely amazing with its bath and shower that look out to the ocean. The cost of the suite is worth that view alone! This Haven suite is so wonderful – you feel like you are experiencing the best of the best at sea in every way. The only negative is that there is some noise at night which sounds like a door slamming shut. It appears to be a door used by the night crew. After a couple of nights, it didn’t bother us as much anymore. Layout of the ship Although this is a massive ship (over 150,000 tons), it is so well layed out that you never feel it is so large. The flow of the ship is excellent. There are ample elevators so that they only time we really waited was when we returned from a port and a number of people were returning to the ship at once. Photography I honestly wonder when NCL is going to phase this out. No-one seemed interested in having their photos taken especially at the ports. Same in restaurants, no-one wanted their photos taken. Art The biggest waste is the Art Auction section – they must waste tons of paper with all the flyers for Art Auctions that get delivered to the rooms. I wonder if they even cover all the cost of paper and printing with the amount of art they sell?? Shows We attended three shows: Burn the Floor – absolutely fantastic dancers. We thoroughly enjoyed this show. Russian Folk Show – very talented performers. Make sure you get there early as it was extremely popular and the Theatre staff are clueless at trying to assist with checking who has been waiting for a seat and who is just walking in and pushing past. Million Dollar Quartet – vey long show. It became tedious and boring. The guy who portrayed Jerry Lee Lewis was excellent as well as the guy who portrayed Johnny Cash. Restaurants We had all our breakfasts at the Haven restaurant. A special word of thanks to Johnson who always ensured that my daughter had gluten free meals and who provided the most delicious gluten free bread. He also ensured that there were gluten free muffins and toast at breakfast as well as waffles and French toast. Breakfasts at the Haven restaurant are a real treat but I did feel that some of the waiters were not up to scratch. A little extra training is needed. For example, some waiters neglected to take juice/coffee orders and some just plain rushed us by bringing plates of cooked breakfast when we were still trying to finish fruit/yogurt. Tropicana We came here for dinner at 5.30pm when we had Burn the Floor show booked at 7.30pm. Edwin, our waiter was amazing. He ensured that we had ample time to enjoy our meal without feeling rushed and also ensured that my daughter’s gluten free requirements were met. He was extremely professional and the next time we ate there, we requested a table in his section. Savor The food and service were acceptable. Nothing spectacular but a pleasant enough evening. Teppanyaki Great evening, fun chef who made us laugh and have a great time and a great meal. Gluten free for my daughter was carefully taken care of and we thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience. Cagneys Loved the beef fillet and the service was excellent. Le Bistro Probably our least favourite of the specialty restaurants but still enjoyed it. Warnemunde We had planned to take the train to Rostock, but we so enjoyed the seaside town of Warnemunde that we stayed there and enjoyed strolling around all the lovely little shops. We enjoyed a lunch of fresh fish and chips and then we went on a cruise around the harbor. Very interesting to see the construction of ships at Neptun Werft. Tallinn We took a taxi into the town centre. Tallinn is a wonderful town to spend the day wandering around. We also walked to the Balti Jaam Market just outside the town centre (near the railway station). We enjoyed lunch there. There is a lovely confectionery shop at the ground floor of Balti Jaam which has a wide selection of chocolates suitable for souvenirs at very reasonable prices. The market is frequented by locals so it is an authentic example of Estonian produce. St Petersburg We took a 2 day tour with TJ Travel. Our guide was Daria and her knowledge is absolutely astounding. She never stopped giving us interesting facts and making the history come alive. We thoroughly enjoyed the trip to Catherine’s Palace and the walk in Peterhof with its utterly stunning gardens. September is a great time to visit as the trees are changing colour for autumn/fall so it is especially beautiful. We also found the metro trip very interesting and enjoyed the boat canal ride although it was the one time that it was raining. The weather was cool but there were minimal crowds so it was possible to really appreciate the sights especially at the Hermitage and Church on Spilled Blood. Daria took us to two modern Russian restaurants for our lunches on the two days and I must recommend Russian dumplings- they are light and delicious! St Petersburg is the place to really soak yourself in history and transport yourself back in time to another world. Would highly recommend Daria and TJ – they also give discounts to Cruise Critic members. Helsinki We met friends in Helsinki and thoroughly enjoyed spending time with them. We were there on a Sunday which is not ideal as the shops only open at 11am (and we had to be back at the ship at 3.30pm) and many of the stalls in the market are closed. There is far too little time spent in Helsinki. NCL should only leave at 6pm. Nynashamn (for Stockholm) We took the HOHO bus into Stockholm which is about a one hour bus trip. We had $50 credit for each port so it was well worthwhile to use this option. The HOHO buses were parked within easy walking distance from the ship and they recorded your ship cabin details so you did not pay at the pier – instead you were charged directly to the ship account. We spent most of our time in the Old Town and then walked to the modern side of Stockholm. We also watched the changing of the guard which I honestly would not recommend. This is nothing like the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace. There are 4 guards marching around (no band) and a bit of shouting. We really felt we wasted our time here. Stockholm is a beautiful city and we thoroughly enjoyed the day. The HOHOs return between 3.30pm and 4.30pm. This was a fantastic cruise – both the ports and the service on the Getaway and we wish we could do it all again. We would not hesitate to cruise with NCL next time.

Wish we could do it all again!

Norwegian Getaway Cruise Review by Mercury

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: September 2019
  • Destination: Baltic Sea
  • Cabin Type: The Haven 2-Bedroom Family Villa with Balcony
We travelled in late Sep - Baltic sailing.

Despite the fact that temperatures on this later season sailing were quite cool (10 C – 16C), I would say that this is an excellent time to do a Baltic cruise. Firstly, there are far less crowds and secondly, the cruise fare is more reasonable. We were also able to secure a Haven 2 bed cabin at an excellent fare.

Embarkation

We took a taxi from Copenhagen centre (Hotel Bethel) to the Oceankaj port where the Getaway was berthed. Embarkation was quick and easy and NCL are very efficient. We arrived just after 11am and were on the ship before 12pm.

Haven guests could either have lunch in the Haven restaurant or at Margaritaville (complimentary). We decided to go Margaritaville and the service was excellent and the shrimps were delicious: large, firm, tasty. This was the standard throughout the ship – wherever we had shrimp it was the same excellent quality.

We spent an hour exploring the ship and our bags were already at our suite by 2pm so we unpacked. The mandatory safety drill was at 4pm and this is the one area that NCL could drastically improve. The drill took at least an hour because all the information was repeated in three different languages. Many people are rude and talk over the languages that they don’t understand and the crew then has to request them to please be considerate of other guests. There was not enough space for seating in O’Sheehans for everyone and it was tough standing for all that time. In addition, the crew would not let us sit on the floor. So I suggest that you try to get to your meeting point before the required time so that you don’t end up like us standing all the time. Further, the crew member who demonstrated how to put on the life jacket literally got “stage fright” and was unable to do it correctly. He tried 3 times, before another crew member took over and correctly demonstrated how to do it. Many people just put their heads down on the tables in O’Sheehans and blotted the “noise” out. It just got too much. But hang in there, because after a bad start, it was all positive after that!

Haven 2 bed family suite 15108

We absolutely loved our suite. With 2 adults and 2 children, there is ample space and it really is wonderful for the children to have their own room and bathroom. Our steward (Moncito), set up the Pullman bed for our 10 year old son (similar to a bunk) and made the sleeper couch below into a comfortable bed for our 12 year old daughter.

There is ample storage space in the suite. The king bed in the main bedroom is the most comfortable bed I have had in over 10 cruises. We requested memory foam pillows and this was handled by our Butler, Stefan. Stefan also made sure we had coffee pods for the Nespresso machine and brought a lovely selection of snacks each afternoon (including choc chip cookies which were the best!) Stefan really was an excellent butler – always willing to go the extra mile and always offering helpful advice.

The master bathroom in this suite is absolutely amazing with its bath and shower that look out to the ocean. The cost of the suite is worth that view alone!

This Haven suite is so wonderful – you feel like you are experiencing the best of the best at sea in every way.

The only negative is that there is some noise at night which sounds like a door slamming shut. It appears to be a door used by the night crew. After a couple of nights, it didn’t bother us as much anymore.

Layout of the ship

Although this is a massive ship (over 150,000 tons), it is so well layed out that you never feel it is so large. The flow of the ship is excellent. There are ample elevators so that they only time we really waited was when we returned from a port and a number of people were returning to the ship at once.

Photography

I honestly wonder when NCL is going to phase this out. No-one seemed interested in having their photos taken especially at the ports. Same in restaurants, no-one wanted their photos taken.

Art

The biggest waste is the Art Auction section – they must waste tons of paper with all the flyers for Art Auctions that get delivered to the rooms. I wonder if they even cover all the cost of paper and printing with the amount of art they sell??

Shows

We attended three shows:

Burn the Floor – absolutely fantastic dancers. We thoroughly enjoyed this show.

Russian Folk Show – very talented performers. Make sure you get there early as it was extremely popular and the Theatre staff are clueless at trying to assist with checking who has been waiting for a seat and who is just walking in and pushing past.

Million Dollar Quartet – vey long show. It became tedious and boring. The guy who portrayed Jerry Lee Lewis was excellent as well as the guy who portrayed Johnny Cash.

Restaurants

We had all our breakfasts at the Haven restaurant. A special word of thanks to Johnson who always ensured that my daughter had gluten free meals and who provided the most delicious gluten free bread. He also ensured that there were gluten free muffins and toast at breakfast as well as waffles and French toast.

Breakfasts at the Haven restaurant are a real treat but I did feel that some of the waiters were not up to scratch. A little extra training is needed. For example, some waiters neglected to take juice/coffee orders and some just plain rushed us by bringing plates of cooked breakfast when we were still trying to finish fruit/yogurt.

Tropicana

We came here for dinner at 5.30pm when we had Burn the Floor show booked at 7.30pm. Edwin, our waiter was amazing. He ensured that we had ample time to enjoy our meal without feeling rushed and also ensured that my daughter’s gluten free requirements were met. He was extremely professional and the next time we ate there, we requested a table in his section.

Savor

The food and service were acceptable. Nothing spectacular but a pleasant enough evening.

Teppanyaki

Great evening, fun chef who made us laugh and have a great time and a great meal. Gluten free for my daughter was carefully taken care of and we thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience.

Cagneys

Loved the beef fillet and the service was excellent.

Le Bistro

Probably our least favourite of the specialty restaurants but still enjoyed it.

Warnemunde

We had planned to take the train to Rostock, but we so enjoyed the seaside town of Warnemunde that we stayed there and enjoyed strolling around all the lovely little shops. We enjoyed a lunch of fresh fish and chips and then we went on a cruise around the harbor. Very interesting to see the construction of ships at Neptun Werft.

Tallinn

We took a taxi into the town centre. Tallinn is a wonderful town to spend the day wandering around. We also walked to the Balti Jaam Market just outside the town centre (near the railway station). We enjoyed lunch there. There is a lovely confectionery shop at the ground floor of Balti Jaam which has a wide selection of chocolates suitable for souvenirs at very reasonable prices. The market is frequented by locals so it is an authentic example of Estonian produce.

St Petersburg

We took a 2 day tour with TJ Travel. Our guide was Daria and her knowledge is absolutely astounding. She never stopped giving us interesting facts and making the history come alive. We thoroughly enjoyed the trip to Catherine’s Palace and the walk in Peterhof with its utterly stunning gardens. September is a great time to visit as the trees are changing colour for autumn/fall so it is especially beautiful.

We also found the metro trip very interesting and enjoyed the boat canal ride although it was the one time that it was raining. The weather was cool but there were minimal crowds so it was possible to really appreciate the sights especially at the Hermitage and Church on Spilled Blood. Daria took us to two modern Russian restaurants for our lunches on the two days and I must recommend Russian dumplings- they are light and delicious! St Petersburg is the place to really soak yourself in history and transport yourself back in time to another world.

Would highly recommend Daria and TJ – they also give discounts to Cruise Critic members.

Helsinki

We met friends in Helsinki and thoroughly enjoyed spending time with them. We were there on a Sunday which is not ideal as the shops only open at 11am (and we had to be back at the ship at 3.30pm) and many of the stalls in the market are closed. There is far too little time spent in Helsinki. NCL should only leave at 6pm.

Nynashamn (for Stockholm)

We took the HOHO bus into Stockholm which is about a one hour bus trip. We had $50 credit for each port so it was well worthwhile to use this option. The HOHO buses were parked within easy walking distance from the ship and they recorded your ship cabin details so you did not pay at the pier – instead you were charged directly to the ship account.

We spent most of our time in the Old Town and then walked to the modern side of Stockholm. We also watched the changing of the guard which I honestly would not recommend. This is nothing like the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace. There are 4 guards marching around (no band) and a bit of shouting. We really felt we wasted our time here.

Stockholm is a beautiful city and we thoroughly enjoyed the day. The HOHOs return between 3.30pm and 4.30pm.

This was a fantastic cruise – both the ports and the service on the Getaway and we wish we could do it all again.

We would not hesitate to cruise with NCL next time.
Mercury’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

The Haven 2-Bedroom Family Villa with Balcony
Cabin H4
We absolutely loved our suite. With 2 adults and 2 children, there is ample space and it really is wonderful for the children to have their own room and bathroom. Our steward (Moncito), set up the Pullman bed for our 10 year old son (similar to a bunk) and made the sleeper couch below into a comfortable bed for our 12 year old daughter.

There is ample storage space in the suite. The king bed in the main bedroom is the most comfortable bed I have had in over 10 cruises. We requested memory foam pillows and this was handled by our Butler, Stefan. Stefan also made sure we had coffee pods for the Nespresso machine and brought a lovely selection of snacks each afternoon (including choc chip cookies which were the best!) Stefan really was an excellent butler – always willing to go the extra mile and always offering helpful advice.

The master bathroom in this suite is absolutely amazing with its bath and shower that look out to the ocean. The cost of the suite is worth that view alone!
This Haven suite is so wonderful – you feel like you are experiencing the best of the best at sea in every way.

The only negative is that there is some noise at night which sounds like a door slamming shut. It appears to be a door used by the night crew. After a couple of nights, it didn’t bother us as much anymore.
Deck 16 Suite Cabins