Norwegian Joy Review

4.0 / 5.0
505 reviews

So much potential, but little of it was realized.

Review for Canada & New England Cruise on Norwegian Joy
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Belgian cruiser1
10+ Cruises • Age 60s

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Additional details

Sail Date: Sep 2023
Cabin: Concierge Villa Suite with Balcony

As we had to find an alternative to another canceled cruise - and had our heart set on this region - we decided to give NCL a chance. This was our 21st cruise, but our first with NCL - which we thought we could compare with MSC or Celebrity (and not with other luxury companies that we have also cruised with before). We knew a lot about the history of the ship and felt we had some idea of what we could and could not expect to get from this experience, considering what sort of weather New England and Canada usually have and whether that requires a ship with more indoor or outdoor facilities. All thing considered, we were pleasantly surprises with the ship itself and with both food and drinks. The service and/or the qualifications of the staff ... those were however another matter altogether. The price we paid for the suite had been a factor that motivated our choosing of this ship for this voyage, and in that regard the cruise more than lived up to our expectations - although we are quite aware of the fact that we will probably never get the same cabin type for the same price again on another NCL sailing of this length. Our main issue was with the service and the staff, especially the waiters in restaurants such as Savour and Taste (even a tenth of the things we had to accept evening after evening, would have gotten any waiter sacked in a normal restaurant - but I guess the so-called "war for talent" is at play in the cruise business as much as it is elsewhere).

Cabin Review

Concierge Villa Suite with Balcony

According to the info I've got, a concierge type Penthouse suite. Larger than normal balcony cabins and with the benefit of a Nespresso coffee machine - which is a big plus on any ship that makes you pay for Starbucks unless you can live with the black goo they call coffee in the lounges and restaurants. Except for some minor issues with the hot water in the shower and some of the doors to the wardrobe, the suite was perfect - especially as it was situated on the port side and gave us great views sailing into Saguenay. Our cabin attendant Raju did well (and would have gotten a big tip at the end of the trip) until the moment where he decided to bill us for stuff from the minibar - which we had not even opened once during the whole voyage.

Port Reviews

Quebec City

Our ship had the best spot in port and Quebec is simply wonderful. We visited everything on foot, except for the falls (took public transport bus 800 for only 7.80$ per person for the whole trip) - and there's a lot to see in this city, especially if you venture past the boundaries of the vieux Quebec and go further. This is the sort of port that can make a cruise complete.

Boston

Beautiful city on a human scale, but - unless you are a big fan of brownstone architecture ) don't waste time on Beacon Hill. Enjoy Boston Commons if the weather is good and be sure to explore the art in the library buildings

Charlottetown (Prince Edward Island)

Good place to explore on your own and (as advertised) very walk-able. Avoid the crowded tourist traps near the cruise port and walk further to see the best houses or restaurants. We had lunch at Salt & Sol in the Yacht Club and that made our day. The pedestrian only street is a waste of time, but there's a good coffee shop across from the entry to St Dunstan's Basilica

Sydney (Nova Scotia)

Not all that much to see, but the inland is beautiful. We did an excursion with NCL to the Highland Village and that was worth it, both for the history lesson and the views. Around the port, only some small churches and a short boardwalk

Saguenay

Go hiking. When you sail through the fjord, you'll see the beauty of this area - but you have to get away from the port and into the National parks to really experience what the area has to offer.

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