Kinda average, not bad not great. Had some highlights: Norwegian Pearl Cruise Review by pixelwiz

Norwegian Pearl 3
Member Since 2011

Overall Member Rating

Kinda average, not bad not great. Had some highlights

Sail Date: December 2011
Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation: Miami
Came back from my 5th cruise. Second with Norwegian, this one was on the Pearl. I primarily chose this cruise because of the itinerary and it fit into my schedule well. In the future, I've decided I will first pick a good ship, then the itinerary, and everything else is secondary.

I can't say that there were many things on the Pearl that were great. Most were just about average, I've seen better and worse. So for the price, I suppose it was ok.

If you cruised with them before, you can supposedly board 1 hour earlier than most, I could not tell the difference...

First thing I should have done when boarded is checked my carry-ons. But even though it was my 5th cruise I didn't know you can do that. They'll be happy to keep your carry-ons until you're ready to get them or till your room is ready.

Also, keep an eye out for any notes by your door, they didn't deliver one of my bags because they thought there was liquor in it, well there wasn't, but I More did have a bunch of sodas and waters in there. And I didn't see the note till much after we got into the room and got the other bags.

First thing we did was go for lunch in the Summer Palace dining room. It is open, and lunch was very good. The NY Strip Steak was the best piece of meat I had on the cruise, I craved it again later in the week. Also the blueberry cheesecake was my favorite desert the whole cruise and came with some rare berries that aren't common in Florida. I loved it.

After lunch we went by the gallery and registered for the art auction (mainly for the free champagne and art pieces). After that we went to see if our room was ready, it was a little after 2PM and it was. Although I believe we were told that rooms won't be ready till about 4PM. So I suggest you venture to your room and see.

The safe was locked, had to get someone to come out and open it. Later found out why, it blocks the door if it's unlocked, so I left a note to the next person with a simple initial code...

Our room steward was amazing, but we didn't actually meet him till the second day, kinda unusual. He made great animals, noticed the friend I traveled with bought an elephant and made one that day. And the last one just made me go WOW, cause it was a monkey hanging from the ceiling, loved it.

I suggest you make friends with the photographers and people who work in the photo areas. They just might hook you up with a deal that's better than advertised ;) Though I wish the whole process was better. Why not scan the key cards and then let people review on an iPad or laptop to pick which ones they like. Offer just a digital package, would save a ton of paper and hopefully allow them to offer lower prices. Some of the pictures came out great, but so expensive...

If you participate in any of the game shows or other activities, most are not videotaped, so I suggest you have one of your travel companions videotape some of it for you. I wish I had.

The safety drills no longer have to go on decks, that was new to me, we were actually in the theater. Not a big deal really, but you do have to go there. The life vest is no longer necessary either.

I was disappointed with the actual theater, I recall Carnival and Princess seats being much more comfortable, and had either nearby tables for drinks or had tables that pulled out of the arm rests, I think. This one just had a cup holder by your feet, most were broken, chairs were uncomfortable, and Air Conditioning was blowing from every back of the chair. My friend was usually cold, and even I got cold sometimes.

The actual shows were average. I later found out that it was only about the second week on board for the dancers, so that would explain a few things. A couple of numbers in the shows were great, but overall I'd say barely average. I didn't like Oh What a Night at all, but most of the audience I think liked it a lot. I love improv comedy, but theirs was just so-so. The juggler on the first night was ok, but during the final show, WOW, his finale was unbelievable. Less

Published 03/20/12

Cabin review: OK Obstructed Oceanview

I can't remember the exact cabin number. It had a little port hole. One day I'll go on one with a balcony. The room was fine, enough space to unpack. Shower was actually significantly bigger than what I remember it being on my previous Carnival cruise. We were on the same deck where you leave the boat from in ports, so that was both convenient and annoying cause everyone walks by your room.

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Port and Shore Excursions

Jeep Tour

Ok, the idea of the Jeep tour was great. However, you share the Jeep with two other people, and we all wanted to drive, so everyone barely got any time behind the wheel. The actual Jeeps are pretty ran down, some were better than others, ours had different tires on each wheel. No real off-roading, but a few stops. The tour guide was ok, gave us a little history, probably as good as I could expect, though I wish they had a CD in each Jeep that was timed to where you are and would give you some more info, or do it over the radio or something. Also not really enough time to do the tour and shop. My friend loved the snorkeling stop, I don't do that, so I went for another massage there, a little pricier than Jamaica but still like half the ship price. What I really want to do next time is a personal submarine excursion. If I were you, I'd ask your guide to get you back with at least 1-2 hours before you have to leave so that you can go do some shopping if interested.

Stingray Swim

My least favorite stop overall. It's the second time I've been there. The island tour is pretty boring, our excursion included both the tour and stingray swim. The sailing guys were fun, but not very informative. They really tried to push some expensive photos onto us, I think that should just be a part of your price as a souvenir. The drinks they provide were crap, a gallon of water and some disgusting cheapest juice resembling liquid you can buy at a store. This is definitely not your average champagne cruise. I could do without the stingrays, but I guess it was fun to try it. The island tour, sigh, they didn't allow for lunch time again, we were starving. No planned bathroom stops either. If you've never been to Hell, it's worth going once, but second time, BORING. I guess the very last part was ok the Turtle Farm stop, I hadn't gone there before and it was pretty impressive. Bottom line, not the best cruise stop, not he best guide, not the best excursion. I'm gonna try to avoid that stop next time, but do buy some cheap alcohol when you're there, and do it early cause they have to get it to the cruise ship in time!

Bobsled Tour

Our tour guide was an interesting fellow, but he did get everywhere on time to drop us off and pick us up, but I would not really call him a guide, more just a driver. The bobsled tour I think is one of the best, ours also included the falls. Beware of time limits, we barely had any time left at the end to buy any souvenirs, and lunch was kinda skipped, so bring a snack or plan to eat somewhere. We actually did the bob sled twice, second time you can cut the line, but it wasn't really worth it. There is also a beautiful infinity pool there with a small slide, pretty fun. The falls are gorgeous, but climbing them was much harder than I thought. Even having come prepared with proper shoes, I broke my water proof watch, and scraped my ankle so bad there is still a spot 3 month later, that hurt. But I tried it on my own, with a group it's too boring. My advice, do a little portion and walk the stares the rest of the way to the top, but if you're good at this go for it. Also beware of scammers at the falls and all over really. Don't give them your name. Oh, there is also a lady doing massages where the bob sled is, and it's way cheaper than on the ship, and I'd say actually better! Plus you can do as much time as you want, 10, 20, 30 minutes, whatever.

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Member Since 2011
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