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1,937 Cuba Cruise Reviews

We chose this cruise because the itinerary included Cuba, which we wanted to visit. I most likely wouldn't have chosen this ship otherwise. That said, I don't get what all the complaints are about! I'm on my 20th Carnival ... Read More
We chose this cruise because the itinerary included Cuba, which we wanted to visit. I most likely wouldn't have chosen this ship otherwise. That said, I don't get what all the complaints are about! I'm on my 20th Carnival cruise so I've seen a lot of ships. It's true this one is smaller and doesn't have a few amenities like the Seaside Theatre but it still had plenty of other things you would find on other ships like Guy's Burgers, Sushi, Punchliner Comedy Club, mini-golf, Serenity deck, etc. It had a few very chill areas to relax on that you don't find on other ships too that I appreciated since the layout is different (in a good way). The smaller size meant fewer people which wasn't a bad thing either when it came to lines for food, port debarkation, etc. The food was decent too. Perhaps not quite as good as some of the other ships but other reviews had me expecting trash and it was far from that lol. Cabins were like any other ship for the most part imo (we had an Oceanview). The entertainment was good as far as music and comedians go. There was actually a live Salsa band in one of the lounges and dance lessons on one of the sea days which was fun. The cruise director Erin was just as good as other ships as well, so there was plenty to do. Room steward, waitstaff, etc also all gave the same high level of service I always have on Carnival so not sure why some people had a bad experience there. Bottom line, don't try to compare this ship to the Breeze or Vista. That would be like comparing Lake Michigan (which is indeed nice) to the Caribbean Sea (which is next level nice). The one thing I will caution is that final debarkation took a long time. There were only TWO customs agents that morning and there were probably about 2K people getting off. A few folks missed their flights so if you book a cruise to Cuba and have to fly to Miami be careful with how early your return flight leaves. Also, if you're looking for a tour in Havana go with Blexie. Much less expensive than Carnival's tours and far better. Rosio was the best! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Decided to try MSC because I liked the sail/stop schedule. Big mistake. HUGE. The ship belongs in the bone yard. Very tired. Balcony doors don’t open. Air conditioning doesn’t work. TV and Internet is a joke. Entertainment is ... Read More
Decided to try MSC because I liked the sail/stop schedule. Big mistake. HUGE. The ship belongs in the bone yard. Very tired. Balcony doors don’t open. Air conditioning doesn’t work. TV and Internet is a joke. Entertainment is horrendous. The food is terrible all the way around, only second to the deplorable, disingenuous leadership of the ship who have no interest in hearing about your issues let alone resolving them. Avoid this ship and cruise line at all cost. It was a complete and utter nightmare from making the booking to settling the bill. This company should stick to transporting what they are good at and it’s not people. Service is clearly not in their DNA. I would not sail with MSC again if it was free. Traveling with a group. We all share the aforementioned sentiments. It was so disappointing to meet up each evening as a group and to have nothing but horror stories to share. I don’t typically write bad reviews but felt compared to share. This should have been one of the most memorable trips for the books. Unfortunately, the memories will not be as I’d hoped. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Everyone talks about how awesome cruises are. On Norwegian I had just the opposite experience. To start I was pleasantly surprised by the quickness of boarding the ship that was awesome. In heading to my room on the 10th floor upon ... Read More
Everyone talks about how awesome cruises are. On Norwegian I had just the opposite experience. To start I was pleasantly surprised by the quickness of boarding the ship that was awesome. In heading to my room on the 10th floor upon opening the elevator I was startled by the smell of raw sewage. To be honest if I wanted to smell raw sewage I’ll go get a job at the local water treatment plant. This smell never went away the whole cruise. It then became everywhere I went even on the top pool deck. It’s a good thing this cruise is unlimited drinks because it made this some what bearable. After getting to Cuba I really enjoyed the quickness of boarding on and off the boat. I loved getting to hang out there away from the septic tank called “Norwegian Sky”. After getting back on the boat and enjoying some fair food at the buffet we headed for bed. Our room was located just next to a room labeled “pool maintenance”. I’m not sure if you have ever had the cops come kick your door down in the middle of the night but that is what that room sounded like at all hours of the night making sleeping properly a chore. I was left tired throughout most of the cruise. That was really a big disappointment. How can you relax on vacation without even being able to sleep. The adults pool was also closed for a day and a half during this time which seemed ridiculous. So after leaving Cuba I got some cool pics from the back of the boat of the harbor which was cool. It made me wonder though why on most of the decks there is limited views due to dirty windows that extend all the way up. I thought being on the water on a cruise I would get some better views. Headed off to the Bahamas turned the pool deck into a party which was cool if there was enough pool space to entertain the whole party. The pool that day went from clear to yellow by the afternoon which is why I stayed clear of taking a dip in. I also thought the entertainment by the pool was super cheesy most of the day. I was informed by the lifeguard that this was the only cruise ship you can’t have a drink near the pool which I thought was rediculous. I couldn’t even sit in the edge of the pool with a beer. I did like the reggae banned that played though they were great. I did like the bartenders at the pool deck too. In getting to the Bahamas I was looking forward to stretching my legs and getting away from the septic tank. We then found out that that we weren’t going to make that stop which is a total let down. I was informed it’s pretty common for this maybe 1/3 of the time. I think that’s a bit higher than it should be. So back to sea brought another busy day probably busiest day yet on the pool deck. Today I was just ready to be back home and away from the septic tank so I decided to not drink any alcohol and drink water that was located on the bar in a huge jug. I am not sure how they fill this but I think it made me sick. I was deathly ill by the time we made it to Miami. I am still recovering from being sick and missing already 2 days of work. So we made reservations the night before at the palace which a pretty limited menu. I thought my steak was over cooked and sub par. This night we decided to try the crossings which had the exact same menu. Why not call it the same restaurant if it’s literally the same menu. Again I was let down. After getting to Miami I was surprised again by u loading times and speed. Thank god because it was the worst vacation I have ever had and take 5-6 a year for last 25 years. Overall I have mostly nothing but bad things to say for the cruise ship. I don’t know if this was the worst renovation I have ever seen on a boat that just needs to be retired and put back in the dry dock to be brought to the scrap yard. This experience on the boat has left a sour taste in my mouth about cruises. I am tempted to try another cruise line due to all my friends raving about them but I honestly don’t know if I can take another step on a septic tank or know if they all are septic tanks on the ocean. This experience I rated as poor because the cons greatly out way the pros in this ship. I would beware to anyone booking a cruise on the “Norwegian Sky”. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We have been on several cruises from Carnival, Royal Carribean, and Disney Cruise Line. We have spent as little as $200 to as much as $1,000 per person on cruises. Before leaving we made sure we dotted all our “I’s” and crossed all ... Read More
We have been on several cruises from Carnival, Royal Carribean, and Disney Cruise Line. We have spent as little as $200 to as much as $1,000 per person on cruises. Before leaving we made sure we dotted all our “I’s” and crossed all of our “t’s” as far as passport and visas go. My husband has dual citizenship (Brazilian, and American) and his American passport was expired so we made sure that we could leave the country and come back with his Brazilian passport and naturalization certificate. We called a total of six times to the port and NCL to make sure we were good to cruise with those documents. Both the port of Canaveral and NCL customer services assured us that we were good to go with those documents. On May 20th we were ready to go (so we thought)…. We arrived at the port and the lady that was taking care of us seemed a little confused. Her name was Miranda. She was a very sweet lady however didn’t really know how to input our information etc… She asked a very nice lady (I’m assuming a manager) and the lady said our documents were fine etc…. Miranda continued to be confused as she had other questions so another manager by the name of David Johnson came to us and immediately urged us to go to the managers desk. We gladly went assuming that he would help us and expedite our check in. We reach the managers desk and another lady by the name of Kathleen Bianchi kept asking us if we could go home and get his “American passport”. We explained that it was expired and that we called six times to make sure we could travel with the Brazilian passport blah blah blah….. She insisted on us giving her names of people that we spoke to which we didn’t have. In the mean time Mr. David made copies of all of our paperwork and asked me bluntly, “Mam, I need to know if you will be boarding today without your husband?”. I was in shock!!!! I didn’t even know that it was a possibility that my husband couldn’t get on the boat. They NEVER apologized and acted in any way sorry for what was happening to us. There were NO lamentable feelings from them AT ALL…. We remained calm and very politely asked them to please check with immigration because we knew that we were ok to travel to Cuba with his Brazilian passport. Mr. David said it wasn’t “his job” to make sure of anything. It was “our” duty to ensure we had the appropriate paperwork. In the meantime, I advised my husband to call the duty officer at “custom and border patrol” (located downstairs from where we were). We called and spoke to officer Dusan who assured us that we were good to travel with the documents we had. He even advised us to ask Mr. David to look up the website page where it specifies the necessary documents. Again Mr. David refused. At this point Im done. Im thinking we’re not going to board and we should have just cancelled our cruise. My husband saw the young manager that initially helped us going to the bathroom. He ran to wait for her outside the ladies bathroom so that when she came out he explained our situation. She quickly spoke with Kathleen (whom at this point felt she could do something to help us) both ladies went downstairs and within FIVE minutes came back with the okay for us to board. O.K…… at this point, 3 hours later, I am exhausted, but relieved! Now it was time to enjoy our very much-needed vacation. We purchased our cruise for $1,546.18 (for two). We had done a Disney cruise a couple months prior for about the same price. I mention that because we expected this to be just as nice as the Disney Cruise. To our dismay…. It WASN’T!!!! We went to customer service every single day asking for the gift that our travel agent bought us and they denied the gift. Customer service kept saying the gift was never purchased and we needed proof. Unfortunately we didn’t snap a picture of the “proof” so we never received our gift. NO biggie….. Then, we purchased the water bottle package on our second day of the cruise. We only received it on the last day of our cruise. Everyday, I would walk to the bar and remind them that we didn’t get our water bottles and they kept saying it was on the way but we only got it the last day. When we looked up our cruise there was a deal going on that we had an option to receive one out of five perks for free. Since this was an open bar cruise, we decided to opt for free wifi. Again, customer service looked me in the eye and said we were not eligible for the free perk since we paid the cheapest rate for our cruise. Cheapest rate??? Really???? I didn’t think that almost $800 per person was the cheapest rate for a cruise. Oh…. Since this was an open bar cruise the service at the bar was horrible to say the least. I wont even get into those details. Food was “okay”… hit or miss. I was given a butter knife to cut through a steak that was super chewy and inedible. Server never checked back after food was served. Buffet food was disgusting. We ate at the buffet just once and couldn’t even go back because it was gross. I NEVER fill out surveys, I NEVER give bad reviews… I just don’t have the time to do it. However, the rollercoaster of feelings that occurred before we even boarded was so disheartening that I couldn’t let this go without saying something. It’s interesting that in the end, Kathleen (one of the managers) said this to us, “you know, in hindsight, I regret not taking 5 minutes of my time to go downstairs and gather the correct information for you guys”. That’s my whole point in writing this review! It would have all been a very different story if they had only taken 5 MINUTES of their “clock time” to make sure there was nothing that could have been done for us. We are hard working middle class people that was looking forward to a little getaway, and without any regards for us, NCL was quick to deny our cruise and never even offered any remuneration of any kind. For the reasons stated above, I would NEVER suggest anyone getting on the Norwegian cruise line…. EVER….. and I am writing this in hope that this never happens to anyone else. If we had “given up” we would have been out of luck. We would not have boarded and we would have lost our money. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Chose this cruise because it was our first time cruising and wanted to see if we liked it. The overall ship experience was better than I thought. Lineups to board/off board were well managed. Lineups for food or drinks were also very ... Read More
Chose this cruise because it was our first time cruising and wanted to see if we liked it. The overall ship experience was better than I thought. Lineups to board/off board were well managed. Lineups for food or drinks were also very limited. They had a good staff ratio. Our interior room was also very nice. Plenty of room. It was on 10th floor, good location to get to dining & pool area. Our biggest disappointment however was that the Bahama island stop was cancelled due to strong winds. It was actually only about 20 to 30 knots and slight swells but because of the tender system they were concerned for customer safety. THis is not the first time they cancelled this and for a trip with only 2 stops this was very disappointing. They need to find a way to offset this but offering a plan B itinerary if they know winds will be an issue... or find a way to build a dock. If you like sea days then no big deal. But we are active people and don't particularly like sitting around a pool. The food & liquor was good quality. Entertainment was good quality too... much better than all inclusive Mexican resorts! Very professional. Had a comedian for 2 nights. Havana stop went smoothy. We are Canadian and didnt bother with the scare tactic of having to buy a shore excursion from NCL. We spoke to an American who also did her own thing- and it was quite fine. Don't let the boat scare you into one of their pricey trips. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Cruised with a group of 7, ages from 50 to 95! My mother in law uses a cane and wheelchair to get around the ship. She never really has a problem getting around. Stayed in room 8207 with a large window looking out. Beds were together to ... Read More
Cruised with a group of 7, ages from 50 to 95! My mother in law uses a cane and wheelchair to get around the ship. She never really has a problem getting around. Stayed in room 8207 with a large window looking out. Beds were together to form one large bed, bigger than a queen, smaller than a king. Bed was under the window which left most of the room open, except for the bedsides. Plenty of shelves and closet space for my wife and my clothes. Room came equipped with a room safe, which we used to store our passports and cash during the day. Also had a small fridge which we used to store our water and a few beer bottles. Room was clean and so was bathroom area. Used the "under bed" storage for our suitcases and carry-on. Mark was our room steward and he kept the room spotless and refreshed the ice bucket, as requested. We arrived a little early at the port around 11:00am. We then only waited about 30 minutes after processing. I would say that the embarkation process was fairly smooth. The Sky is a little older ship, but wears it's age nicely. We chose the "free" liquor option, and most of the time the waits around the bar were ok. We tipped one of the pool waiters $5 early in the morning and another $5 later in the afternoon. His name was Anthony and he provided excellent service. Sure beat getting up and waiting by the bar for drinks. A note about smoking on the ship. It is only allowed in the casino and by the bar on deck 12. I don't think you can smoke cigars in the casino, but you may smoke them on deck 12, in the bar area. There are tables and chairs provided in this area. We only used the Garden Cafe for lunch while we were on the ship. We ate all our other meals in The Palace dining room. The food there is pretty good and there is a variety of choices. I would recommend asking for ANKITA in the Palace dining room for dinner. She is an excellent waitress and very friendly. Entertainment on the ship was pretty good. We saw the dancing and singing "We Will Rock You" show and we all enjoyed it. The comedian was hilarious. I forgot his name, but he was a former LA cop. The variety show was just ok. The city of Havana was beautiful and HOT. We used a Cuban tour company for our tour. The fee was $50 USD per person. It lasted from approx. 9:30am to 3:30 pm. The email for the company is All emails are signed Magdiel and Jessica who I assume are the owners. They are very reliable. We walked 3 blocks out of the building off the ship and met Guillermo, our tour guide in front of a hotel. Guillermo spoke great English and answered all our questions. We walked for awhile in Old Havana and took in 4 squares. We then rode to see the huge statue of Christ on a mountaintop overlooking Havana. We then drove to the Capitol building area and walked that area. We drove down Havana's 5th Avenue and admired the "rich people's" homes. We then drove to Freedom Square and admired the many buildings there. All in all we saw a lot of Havana and got to take in some history. We ended the tour at a cigar factory; where we purchased fresh cigars. All in all a GREAT tour and I would highly recommend this tour company. That night my sister-in-law and I walked out the cruise building and rented a 1948 Red Chevy convertible for a one hour drive around Havana. I would recommend going at night because the sun during the day is very hot. It cost $40 USD for an hour and we tipped our driver "Cookie" $5 for a great ride. We never got to the NCL island in the Bahamas...rough seas prevented going ashore; so we cruised around all day at sea. The weather was beautiful at sea. All in all I would recommend this 4 night cruise. The only real negative about the cruise is every time I dialed for a wake up call on our room phone there was a message "All our operators are busy right now, please hold on". This seems a little ridiculous in this day and age. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We booked the cruise because of the 2 days in Havana and we enjoyed the full cruise as well. We had sailed on the Poesia a couple of years ago and we liked the Armonia cruise more. The food was definitely better on the Armonia. The ... Read More
We booked the cruise because of the 2 days in Havana and we enjoyed the full cruise as well. We had sailed on the Poesia a couple of years ago and we liked the Armonia cruise more. The food was definitely better on the Armonia. The Hotel Director on the Armonia went above and beyond and most of the Senior Staff were very friendly and outgoing. Our cabin steward did a good job and we liked our cabin. A major problem I had was with the layout of the ship. I have a small mobility scooter and between different areas of the ship there are a lot of raised bars on the ground. Each time I drive over one it jolts my body and I ended up with a really painful back and really sore spasms. I had to take pain pills and muscle relaxants the whole time. I tried going on the outside deck to get from one end of the ship to the other but it was often blocked off for some reason. The doors are not automatic either and I often had to wait for someone to come along so I could go to the buffet or to get to an elevator. When I told the Hotel Director he was sympathetic and was aware of the problem. He did send me a nice souvenir to cheer me up. Can't beat the value of MSC. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Missed out on another sold out business related cruise stopping in Cuba as one of the ports so I decided to do this last minute booked trip solo (paid double for my interior cabin which was midship and near to guest services & all ... Read More
Missed out on another sold out business related cruise stopping in Cuba as one of the ports so I decided to do this last minute booked trip solo (paid double for my interior cabin which was midship and near to guest services & all activities) since I did all the research and was intrigued by the Vinales region of Cuba for a day trip. I also needed a mental getaway and break and this was perfect as we also stopped in Key West for a day which was fun! I spent alot of time watching Youtube videos about the Norwegian Sun and others who have done the Norwegian Cuba Cruise and Vinales. Kudos to Scott Singer Cruises on Youtube as he has entire playlists on this exact cruise ship and itinerary. Great for me so I knew what to expect the entire time, even though it was a joy just experiencing it all myself. Took the GoPort shuttle from Orlando airport to Port Canaveral which cost $30 roundtrip and was effortless. Reserved & paid online then called to confirm the meeting location was next to Thrifty Car Rental in MCO along with departure time. Staff was helpful and friendly getting everyone lined up to board the bus and loading luggage underneath. Relaxing ride to Port Canaveral. I had a carryon and napsack so I didn't need to check luggage. No water allowed on the ship so you'll have to discard before going through Port Canaveral security. Be sure to print out your itinerary and proof of all payments made for prepaid gratuities, travel insurance and shore excursions so that you have printed proof to show at checkin just in case their computers aren't up to date. It's $75 for a Cuba Visa if you're getting off the ship in Havana and it's paid through the cruise line. I chose to do the all day Vinales Excursion booked through Norwegian because I didn't want to think, worry or deal with anything once I got off the ship. Price was $175 for the tour which is worth it for the experience described below and the peace of mind to just relax and enjoy the day. I also liked knowing that if anything happened I could complain to Norwegian instead of advocating for myself in a foreign country. Once I got my keycard from the friendly check in staff and walked on the ship in less than 3 minutes, I headed straight to the dining room for lunch around 1:30pm. Washed my hands and proceeded to be pampered by the staff and served lunch. All the food was delicious & of course you can order & sample as much as you want from the menu! And so I did everyday! I loved that the ship was easy for me to navigate all levels and it didn't feel crowded. There were times when I was the only person walking on deck and it was just peaceful. Would do this exact cruise again in a heartbeat. Once we got to Havana, since Vinales is an all day trip with a 2.5 hour ride out to the countryside, I got up early and had breakfast then assembled in theatre to learn which bus I need to find once outside. Staff was there to direct us off the ship through immigration to get my passport stamped. It literally took less than 5 minutes to walk off the ship, through the terminal plus immigration and then out to the bus where my wonderful guide and driver were waiting. No Delays, No Lines, No Stress! You could stop in the terminal to change U.S. Dollars to CUC but I didn't because I'm not a shopper and just wanted to savor the experience. My extremely knowledgeable & professional tour guide was Manuel Alejandro Pozo Calvo with Havanatur.cu (Havana Tours). Manny is a Professor and Highly Educated. He could field any question and give you chapter and verse on every topic. I've traveled all over the world for decades and can honestly say he's one of the best tour guides I've ever had. His knowledge and intention to make sure we had an enjoyable day and learn as much as we can in addition to having a relaxing experience was on display all day. He took us to visit a cigar roller, we sampled coffee, visited the mural, had a delicious lunch and walked around the Vinales Valley with stops along the way. We were a small group so we had the opportunity to sample different fruits, rum and cigars. We had time to stop for photos and enjoy music along the way. We had several stops and walking tours throughout the day so we weren't just sitting on the bus the entire time. From the city to the countryside we got a crash course on this beautiful country and its people. Our Transfur driver was Johnny Toledo who was also helpful and friendly. He safely and masterfully navigated the roadways and the curves in the countryside with our big bus. The bus also had a bathroom in the back which was a lifesaver throughout the day. As a professional and licensed tour guide, Manny does tours for groups from all over the world so I offered to post his email here for anyone wanting to book a Cuba Tour with a PHENOMENAL tour guide. He can be reached at MannyPozoCalvo@gmail.com. All are advised to carry toilet paper off the ship and have on hand as you tour the city. Having a bathroom on the tour bus was an unadvertised bonus as we didn't have to go searching for a bathroom and then worrying about the facilities if we did a private tour. By the time we returned to Havana, everyone on the bus got to know each other so when Manny and Johnny dropped us off back at the terminal, we decided to explore Havana on foot on our own as a small group instead of going back on the ship. We literally crossed the street and just started walking. We walked all over for a couple hours until we ended up at the Malecon then circled back to the ship. The architecture in Havana is gorgeous and though many buildings have structural issues and need renovation, there is much to see and admire. The people were friendly and we felt safe walking around. Some will approach you to engage in conversation with music. Just need to be aware that you'll likely end up being lighter in the pocket as they're engaging and entertaining. Have some dollars you're ready to part with. By the time we walked back to the ship it was dark and we just headed to dinner. Many guests were headed off the ship to get a taste of Havana nightlife since we were leaving at 6am next day and they could have fun at the Tropicana or any of the clubs outside of the cruise terminal nearby in walking distance. It was a long and exciting day and we feel that we got our money's worth between the day trip to Vinales and then freely exploring the streets of Havana. You can always pay to get in the classic cars for a ride or just admire them all as you walk around. It's incredible how resourceful the Cuban people are in using what they have to survive and thrive as tourism is the #1 export for the country. Once back on the ship, I just relaxed and enjoyed the food, music and night entertainment. The Perfect Couple game show and Comedian were particularly fun and we had lots of laughs. Once back to Port Canaveral I had breakfast before getting off the ship. I'm thrilled that I did this last minute cruise and am looking at doing the same again soon as there is so much more to see in Havana. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this to anyone who is adventurous, curious about other cultures and loves to explore. The Cuba Cruise is perfect for that. The Food, the Culture, the Music, the Architecture, the Art and the People will not disappoint. You're only allowed a maximum of 100 cuban cigars if you buy any to bring back to the United States. What I loved about going on Norwegian is that the staff was great and everything was effortless. I didn't have to think or worry about anything the entire time. Got back home totally relaxed and already plotting future cruises with Norwegian's CruiseNext Program and my Personal Cruise Planner. Enjoy your Cuba Cruise! Don't delay. Just Do It. And yes, I'd go again on Norwegian! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We wanted to see Havanna so this was the best way. We loved the balcony room. Embark and disembark smooth. Only issue you weren't informed which floor to embark. We just happened to follow people to correct level in Key West. In ... Read More
We wanted to see Havanna so this was the best way. We loved the balcony room. Embark and disembark smooth. Only issue you weren't informed which floor to embark. We just happened to follow people to correct level in Key West. In Havanna we could see from our balcony where to go. Arriving back at port Canaveral info sheet said 7:30am to disembark. However, we left our room at 7am and were able to walk off. The info sheet did not include what floor. Found this strange. We had to upgrade to bottled water since my husband has organ transplant and cannot risk infection/germs. Had to pre pay tip for this which is fine except everytime we wanted bottled water or most drinks we had to go to the bar. Lack of bar servers for sure. Only place we had good service was in the 2 restaurants. Brochure online listed coffee bar however I could not use my drink upgrade in the Starbucks. No mention online about starbucks. Should change their infor. Also Champagne bar was supposed to have pate and foie gras. Food was not so so. Nothing wowed us. Couldn't open frig in room and steward wouldn't open so I went to customer service and got it opened so we could put bottled water. Strange to have a lock on frig when there were items in it to purchase. Loved the comedian which we saw 3 nights. Can't remember his name. We went to the casino each night as well. Loved the history in Havanna. So happy we were able to go since 2 weeks after our trip cruises were stopped. We prefer all inclusive over cruises. Must better waiter service and food. Do not like tipping to the cruise line prefer to tip when we get good service which we only got in the 2 dinner restaurants so we tipped them and a few bar tenders like we do at resorts even though resorts say tips are included. we always tip good service. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Overall, my family had the greatest time, on and off the ship! It was perfect for the eight adults - schools were in session so there were almost no children on board. The evening activities were lots of fun. Karaoke was great and it was ... Read More
Overall, my family had the greatest time, on and off the ship! It was perfect for the eight adults - schools were in session so there were almost no children on board. The evening activities were lots of fun. Karaoke was great and it was crowded each evening. Fun way to have late night entertainment. I lost my cool when we were on the one-hour trolley tour of Key West. The driver was somewhat distracted and never made it clear where to meet for the return trip to the Ship. He pointed out a bus stop near the Navy Station and said you could pick up a return trolley at a bus stop. We tried to flag down buses and trolleys for the return to the ship but no one would pick us up. Finally I met up with other family members who told us to walk back into town and take a different bus with them. I know we were not the only ones confused. We sat down on a brick stoop outside the Aquarium to make a phone call and two different groups of people approached us to ask if this is where we get the return ride. We told them we weren't sure but were going to follow the drivers instructions. BAD IDEA. On the three hour Old Havana tour had an amazing guide named "Andrew." I was a little taken back by the amount of people begging for cash. In one courtyard, a young man sold us some coconut ice cream in a half coconut shell. It was icy and delicious. Other than that, most of us brought our own water bottles. At the spa, the women giving the couples massage were NOT gentle. I could only imagine what a deep tissue massage would have been like. I took two yoga classes for $15.00 extra. The first class was only 35 minutes. The next day it was 40 minutes. Overall, I would take this same cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Good rates we felt, only bad thing was lack of food variety sometimes and I wish they would have more staff come up to you to talk about things you can do on the ship. Bahamas unfortunately we were unable to disembark on that day, so that ... Read More
Good rates we felt, only bad thing was lack of food variety sometimes and I wish they would have more staff come up to you to talk about things you can do on the ship. Bahamas unfortunately we were unable to disembark on that day, so that was the bad part. Wish there was more pools on board, but overall very nice boat. The rooms were very clean and though they were compact we thought it met all our needs. The people were friendly on board, some bartenders didn't make the best drinks but they were all nice. I think the only negative entertainment on board was the night club at the main hall, it was just one big like high school party as the music personally was too varied and didnt have a theme. The set up did not make sense with a staff and chairs all over not giving much room for dancing, so that should be fixed but the food overall was very yummy lots of different choices and the restaurants were delicious. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We choose this 4-day itinerary paired with a 3-day Pre-Cruise Tour marketed by NCL as the "7-day Rock and Racing in Daytona Beach". The 3-day Cruise Tour included a stay at the Hard Rock Hotel in Daytona Beach starting on a ... Read More
We choose this 4-day itinerary paired with a 3-day Pre-Cruise Tour marketed by NCL as the "7-day Rock and Racing in Daytona Beach". The 3-day Cruise Tour included a stay at the Hard Rock Hotel in Daytona Beach starting on a Friday, as well as a VIP Tour of Daytona International Speedway on the 2nd day of our stay. The 4-day cruise itself sailed from Port Canaveral on Monday. As my husband is a NASCAR fan, this was going to be a vacation which satisfied our bucket lists--his visiting the iconic speedway and my wanting to spend a full day in Havana, Cuba. Our itinerary also included a port stop in Key West, which we've enjoyed before and did again, although the current docking site at the Navy Pier is quite restrictive and certainly not the same experience we had on our previous calls there. Also, we were only in Key West for barely 6 hours, which didn't allow as much time here as we would have liked. Havana is an amazing city of contrasts with some beautiful areas, yet some parts of the city are unfortunately rundown and decaying. It is evident which buildings are maintained by the government and that the Cuban people are very much suppressed. The residents there were very friendly and we had a wonderful driver and tour guide who brought us around all day to see the sights in a classic car. The young man who was our guide spoke excellent English and provided many details of modern day life in Havana, as well as a history of the city and the country. After returning from our excursion to the ship, we showered and dressed and gathered in the theater for an NCL evening excursion to the Tropicana Cabaret. We felt that the entertainment was spectacular and thoroughly enjoyed the evening. We knew the NCL Sun had a recent refurb., did see signs of it and overall enjoyed the ship. Our cabin steward and dining staff were friendly and helpful, but unfortunately, we can't quite say the same for the guest services staff. Although most staff members were polite, they did not do much to help with our areas of concern. Some improvement is needed there. We miss the days on previous cruises when 2 shows were offered in the main theater, early and late. It's now difficult to make the 8 o'clock show if you don't want to eat either very early or very late. There are several other entertainment options throughout the ship, however, for different tastes. The food choices in the buffet were plentiful and our dining room meals were for the most part very good. Our one specialty dining experience was in Los Lobos on deck 12, which we enjoyed. Although the embarkation process started out on the positive side, we did encounter a hitch. As Platinum members, we entered the priority line and had a short wait before presenting our passports, ids and documents. We had paid for our visas through NCL for our Cuba visit, and although the NCL rep at the desk was quick to provide my visa, my husband's was not to be found. We had to wait for a good amount of time until they located his, which was mistakenly put in a folder belonging to VIP guests, sailing in a suite. Once this was resolved, we were then able to continue onto the ship. Now to the not-so-good aspect of our trip. NCL did not communicate with us either at the time of booking (directly with the cruiseline) or when we arrived in Florida regarding transportation options. We expected we would be transported from the hotel to the pier, and were of the understanding that NCL would also cover our hour-plus ride from Orlando Airport to Daytona Beach and the transportation from our hotel to the Daytona Speedway and back again, as we booked the entire 7-day package through NCL, which included airfare, hotel, VIP Speedway Tour and the cruise itself. This being our 10th cruise with NCL, we have previously booked pre-cruise stays with airfare and have not had to worry about any details regarding transportation. I ended up spending a good deal of time on the phone contacting NCL from the hotel and later at the guest services deck onboard the ship trying to get a resolution to the transportation issues, which has not yet been settled and which we are still disputing. The end result was that we ended up paying the transportation costs from the airport to the hotel and for taxi fares to Daytona Speedway from our hotel and back again, even though NCL advised us that an NCL representative would meet us at the hotel the day of our VIP Tour. Although we did have a very enjoyable vacation with lovely weather and met some very nice people, we're sorry to report our disappointment with NCL's lack of communication this time around. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Just got back from 4-night MOS sailing from FLL to Key West to Havana and back to FLL. Had read a lot of negative reviews about the MOS before going but because the Cuba stop was the reason for the cruise in the first place, they did not ... Read More
Just got back from 4-night MOS sailing from FLL to Key West to Havana and back to FLL. Had read a lot of negative reviews about the MOS before going but because the Cuba stop was the reason for the cruise in the first place, they did not dissuade us. Candidly the ship is older and doesn't have all of the bells and whistles of the new-mega ships, but truth be told the-mega ships probably couldn't make it into either Key West or Havana. We (three couples) were in separate "oceanview" cabins on Deck 5. The cabins were small, but were more than functional for our purposes. Our cabin attendant, Elizabeth, could not have been better, nicer or more pleasant. She accommodated every request with a smile and responded with a "hi" or a "are you having a good day?" every time we saw her. We chose "my time" dining for 800 p.m. in order to better accommodate our schedules. We linked up the others in our group and had a table for 6 set aside for each night in the Starlight Dining Room The food was pretty good and was presented nicely, We ate there 3 of the 4 nights and even with just that our waiter, Paolo, knew our names and preferences. All other meals we eaten in either the Windjammer or the Windjammer Marketplace, both of which are connected to each other on Deck 11 and serve the same food. The food was served buffet style, but was not lacking for choices and the service was good. We had read complaints about the bar service. We had no problems at all. We all signed up for the beverage package and at one time or another hit every bar on the ship. Some were definitely busy than others, but all moved quickly. Kudos to Angelito in the Schooner Bar which became our go-to bar throughout. By the first night he knew our names and drinks of choice and never seemed too busy to wait on or talk to us. We really weren't on the ship much, so can't say a lot about the entertainment. However, we did check out the comedian/ventriloquist who was very good. Embarkation and disembarkation in FLL was pretty flawless. Since we drive to FLL, we didn't have tight connections to make on either end, and so we arrived at around 200 on embarkation day and were on the ship within about 20 minutes. On disembarkation day, we left the ship around 845 (by which time all groups had been called) and were out of the terminal and headed toward our car by 900. No worries with security or customs on either end. Speaking of customs, there was a slight bottleneck in Havana which is but one reason why I can't imagine a mega-ship going there. But, the process went pretty quickly. In Cuba we did a private tour (which I would highly recommend) that took us to New Havana by classic car and then into Old Havana on foot, before returning us to the ship to clean up and to eat before taking us to the Tropicana show. Our tour guide took us straight to the front of the line after which were promptly escorted inside. Just so you know, the show started at 930 p.m. and ran until about 1130 p.m., though some of the dancers and performed stayed around to dance with the crowd until around midnight. That's about when we left and met up with the same 2 drivers (we had 2 cars) and our tour guide who returned us to the front door of the terminal. It was seamless and I would recommend the tour company, Cuba With Us, to anyone. The only negative that I can think of was the shopping. Key West, of course, had all of the shops that you could want, and some you wouldn't want to go in. Havana was definitely different than many of the ports we've stopped at before. Not much shopping near the ship and not even that much as we were walking and driving around. Perhaps that's just a result of the politics there as even the citizens have limited shopping options. Shipboard shopping was another matter altogether. There were the usual things, t-shirts, souvenirs and jewelry. I made the mistake of falling for the 75% off sale on Invicta watches and bought one on the sea day. The ticket price was $595 which I knew was inflated, but through some internet research after I got home appreciate was more than 5 times what it was selling for on the Invicta website and almost 6 times what it was selling for on Amazon. So, even with 75% off, I still ended up paying more than I could have paid for the same watch had I waited until I got home. Buyer beware! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
My wife and I went with our good buddies to Key West and then to Havana on a four day cruise out of FLL. The ship is old(er) yes, but lots of great character...it's clean...it never felt crowded and the service was outstanding. ... Read More
My wife and I went with our good buddies to Key West and then to Havana on a four day cruise out of FLL. The ship is old(er) yes, but lots of great character...it's clean...it never felt crowded and the service was outstanding. The pool was a little crowded most of the time and so was the main dining room...otherwise I felt like it was a pretty empty ship...even though it was sold out. The Viking Lounge on top was empty about the whole time...great area to read a book and relax after getting back from the journey. Trivia was super fun. The casino was hopping most times and the dealers were pretty nice. Main dining room food was better than expected...we've gone on three Oceania Cruises so we lowered our expectations. The only suggestion is to get dressing on the side. The appetizers and soups were terrific. Fish of the day was always a good choice as well as the warm cookie and ice cream. The wait-staff was very hard working and remembered our names when we ran into them around the ship. Definitely recommend this cruise, especially for the price and itinerary! Entertainment was okay...comedian very funny. Spa - beware...they will upsell you...wife spent $500 on about $200 worth of treatments because she got sold...has trouble saying no...but she said they were very well done. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Empress of the Seas is an older and smaller ship in the Royal Caribbean fleet. The ship was very well maintained. Rooms are very small by todays standards but they are functional. The food and service was up to Royal Caribbean ... Read More
Empress of the Seas is an older and smaller ship in the Royal Caribbean fleet. The ship was very well maintained. Rooms are very small by todays standards but they are functional. The food and service was up to Royal Caribbean standards. Very nice to have a ship that played Caribbean music by the pool when in the Caribbean. Making guests check out towels for pool and returning them worked real well. If some one left the pool they picked up the towels rather than leave them. That way you always knew if a lounge bed was available. Even on sea days this made lounges available by the pool all day. Life guards were great at keeping glass bottles from being taken into pool. No problem getting tables for 2 at anytime dining. Casino was small but adequate. Use of shuffling machines, 6 to 5 black jack payouts and no even money on black jack at black jack tables below $25 minimum is the main complaint. Missed diamond club area, which is not available on the ship. Biggest complaint was the lack of dress code enforcement at the main dining. People were admitted in shorts, tee shirts and tank tops, even on casual sheik night. Don't have a dress code if you're going to allow anything. A lot to see in Havana. Like stepping back in time 70 years. People were friendly. Felt very safe. Very clean. Easy to come and go through customs. Visa was easy with Royal Caribbean @ $75. Cigars were a great bargain. Make sure you buy in a national store or factory or you probably will get counterfeits. Price is the same in all stores. Know how to get to a store. They don't have easily noticed signs. You must use CUC Cuban money. Exchange rate for American money will cost you 13%. It will cost you 4% to change the money back to American. If you have Euro's or Canadian it is even. Exchange is fast and easy right at the cruise pier. Old Havana Heritage Walking Excursion booked with RC was good. It covered pretty much all of old Havana. We weren't happy that they added a bus portion to the tour. We were only told about this when our tickets arrived on board. We didn't want the bus tour but had to take it. It took up an hour of the tour. Cost $62 per person. Cafe Taberna Excursion booked with RC was good. Cost was $98 per person. 10 minute walk from cruise terminal. Nice show from 9:00 to 11:00 with band and dance couple that gets audience involved. 2 drinks and snack were included. Food is available at additional cost. Can get a little boring after 1 hour or so, especially if you don't know the language. You can leave and walk back to ship at any time if you want. Cuba's Classic Cars excursion booked through Vacations To Go, who we booked cruise through, cost $178 for 2 people and lasted about 3 hours. Very nice tour. Viewed most of the Havana Cuba highlights with stops at Revolution Square and Hotel Nacional. Half the cost of similar tour through cruise ship. All convertible cars were provided. Guide spoke English well. He was quite informative. Hotel Nacional was a great stop. Improvements to tour could be a little more time at hotel. Felt a little rushed at that stop. Tour included alcoholic drink at hotel. Meeting location was perfect. Easy to find and guides were there on time. A little disappointed with the fact that tour requires 4 per car. We were a couple and would have liked a car for 2. Maybe an option could be provided for this. If you just want to ride in the classic cars, there are plenty available outside of pier. You can rent them at $40 - $50 per hour for up to 4 people. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
This is my 4th RC cruise. I chose this one because I would get two days in Havana. I really enjoyed this cruise, despite the ship's flaws. The itinerary was excellent (Key West, Labadee, and two days in Havana). The customer ... Read More
This is my 4th RC cruise. I chose this one because I would get two days in Havana. I really enjoyed this cruise, despite the ship's flaws. The itinerary was excellent (Key West, Labadee, and two days in Havana). The customer service was outstanding, including my awesome stateroom attendant. The food was generally bad, limited, and repetitive. This probably prevented me from gaining weight, though. There was a foul septic tank odor that permeated decks 5 and 6 for half of the cruise. I had to change staterooms (from third deck to 7160), because of a loud banging noise coming from an engine pump. I was very happy with 7160. This was the smallest ship I've been on, and I actually preferred the small size. However, I wish they offered Friday night Jewish services (I don't know if they even offered Sunday morning church), and I wish the entertainment was better (I enjoyed the comedians and the Marriage Game, but I walked out on the impressionist and the finale show). I also wished they showed more adult movies on the pool deck. I wish the solo traveler's get together was held at the sail-away party, so we could meet up earlier in the trip. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Norwegian Sky needs more renovation. Cabin was in sad shape. Food had little taste. Buffet was mass quantity of the same food every day. Cuba needs to be seen on a misson not on a tour bus. Tour operator knew the party line, however, the ... Read More
Norwegian Sky needs more renovation. Cabin was in sad shape. Food had little taste. Buffet was mass quantity of the same food every day. Cuba needs to be seen on a misson not on a tour bus. Tour operator knew the party line, however, the 6 hr. tour is a waste to spend an hour at a cigar/rum store, 2.5+ hours at lunch (waiting for other buses to show up) with bland food and no talent dancers, and an extra stop at a flea market where prices are over rated. Liquor deal was not clear everyone had FREE liquor. They forgot to tell travelers who had the Premium package that traveler had to force the staff to give "Top Shelf" liquor. Talked to the front desk staff and they were willing to give $50 back due to the room issues and tour issues. At the end of the cruise, the transfer transportation only sent one bus, so we waited in the sun for over an hour. The only reason we took this cruise was to use or lose a substantial credit. Wish we had not used the credit. The only way we will go on Norwegian again is if they give a 100% covered trip. Norwegian needs to get their act together! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Freestyle everything. Open bar. Upgrade to Cagneys for one night. Didn’t have to sign for anything. Staff outstanding. Cleanliness of ship outstanding. Very organized. Never waited for anything. Disembarkation well organized and ... Read More
Freestyle everything. Open bar. Upgrade to Cagneys for one night. Didn’t have to sign for anything. Staff outstanding. Cleanliness of ship outstanding. Very organized. Never waited for anything. Disembarkation well organized and quick. Can’t say enough positive about this cruise. Will do again. Used our balcony quite frequently. Did not go to shows. Did not do excursions. Took a taxi to Atlantis. Did not do the aquarium at Atlantis as we thought it was too expensive. If you get upgraded liquor package go to Windjammer bar as they have nice sipping scotch. Buffet breakfast had everything you want. The only item they did not have anywhere on ship was cookies. The ship had a lot of younger clientele which was refreshing. Looking to do a Xmas cruise with Norwegian. After doing the freestyle I will never do traditional cruise again. We took a few one dollar bills for tips. Staff very appreciative. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
This is my third cruise ever and first with NCL. Had high hopes and expectations after only cruising with Carnival in the past. This cruise went to Key West, FL and Havana, Cuba. IMPORTANT to know…This is touted as one day in Key West ... Read More
This is my third cruise ever and first with NCL. Had high hopes and expectations after only cruising with Carnival in the past. This cruise went to Key West, FL and Havana, Cuba. IMPORTANT to know…This is touted as one day in Key West and two days in Havana, IT IS NOT. Having left port at 4 pm on Sunday, it arrived at Key West at 1pm on Monday and we were to be back on the boat by 6pm to set sail at 7. Arriving in Havana at 7 am we were to be back on the ship by 5 am the next day for a 7 am departure toward home. Plan accordingly. We thought we had two full days in Havana and were disappointed. Orlando to Port Canaveral: Shuttles are good, UBER is the way to go. If you have 4 people and luggage get an XL Uber. Stay at the Radison Resort at Port Canaveral if you are arriving a day early. Not in walking distance of too many food choices, but Uber is everywhere down there and cheap to eating destinations. Embarkation was super easy. We requested a 12:30 to 1:00 time and arrived about an hour early. The lines were already down so low that check in process took about 30 minutes and we were on board by 12:10. EVERYONE on board is with their luggage and trying to eat buffet at the only open restaurant. It is a madhouse, but only so bad due to the size of the ship. The Good: Updated in 2018 the rooms and décor throughout seemed really nice. The crew was attentive and super friendly. It is only 800 feet long so getting from one end to the other is pretty quick. Once you learn the decks, getting around is not so hard. All the action is on 5-7 and 11 and 12. Our rooms (on the 10th deck, port side balcony) were really comfortable. They were cleaned once a day and our bed was made up mid-morning and turned down in the evening. Shower had a lot of pressure and temperature easily adjusted. CAREFUL! Because you can easily go too far towards HOT and it is scalding. They have warning signs, but if you have children, don’t let them mess with the shower knob. The drinks were all inclusive and well made. The “painkiller” of British V.I. fame was particularly tasty and followed the original recipe with Pusser’s British Rum. We had paid for the premium package which allowed us the top shelf liquor. This was an over-site, however, because somewhere we missed that this was an all-inclusive cruise from the get-go. We really didn’t need it, but since we had it, we drank high quality stuff to get our money out of it. As an example Woodford Kentucky Bourbon (from the Derby) is a top-shelf bourbon. Bulleit Bourbon and the Pusser's Rum were not. The various bars and hangouts were comfortable, particularly the Windjammer which is a really cozy hangout. I found the bartenders here to be the best and when in International Waters, Cuban cigars can be bought here to smoke up on the smoking deck. The rear observation deck and bar was really nice too. Waiting to get off at the ports is the thing to do. We waited an hour or more before we even bothered to try and get off the ship and the result was minimal lines and quick processing. We cruised the second week of May and there were very few kids/children on the boat which was nice. The pleasant surprise was the Butterfly Conservatory at Key West. Really worth the stop and super cheap to attend. The Bad: The communication system is horrible on this boat. There are no speakers in the cabins and where there are speakers they are very hard to understand except in a few locations. Don’t be lazy. If you want to be informed read the daily guides and watch the TV channels that provide cruise information. The food was mehhhhh!!!! The cafeterias are small and provided little more than your really good Holiday Inn complimentary breakfast. Much of the fruit was artificially ripened and tasteless. The made to order omelet bar is your best bet, but it’s still just Holiday Inn free breakfast. Breakfast in the dining room was the same as at the buffet you just didn’t have to go get it yourself and the coffee was better; very disappointed. We only tried two of the several available restaurants where you pay extra. The Churrascaria service was slow and the meats overcooked. The salad bar there was delicious and had a very good smoked salmon on it. The Mexican restaurant was poorly attempted. Mexican food on a boat when you are from Texas is a bad idea although the table side guacamole was very well done and tasty. I have to say that the food experience on Carnival Conquest 10 years ago was 10 times better than this NCL ship in 2019. For a cruise that is going to Cuba and sells Cuban cigars on board, the smoking deck on this ship is in a poor location with some absurd rules. Outdoors, with room for 40, the smoking deck sits on a part of the upper deck of the ship where the winds whip around frantically from just the ship being in motion. Couple it with any kind of natural wind and one can even light their cigar. What appears to be the bar that serves the smoking deck cannot be smoked at and the bartenders shoo you away if you approach with anything lit. One would think, especially with this cruise, that there would be an indoor smoking lounge so you could actually enjoy your cigars. The cruise itinerary could be better. A full day at sea going and coming back, with two full days in Havana would be AMAZING! Key West is not worth the stop for the length of time you are there in my opinion and with no disrespect to Key Westerners. I’m sure it is much better when you drive down from Miami. Conclusion. The food was 3 stars at best and the itinerary should be massaged to get the most out of Cuba. The comfort of the ship, ease of getting around and staff were above average and having very few kids on the cruise was a nice extra that we weren’t necessarily expecting. I took this cruise to have two days in Cuba and got 22 hours of which 9 of it was after dark. There is only so much one can do in Cuba after dark and most of it can be done on the ship. I would honestly say that if you are taking this cruise to go to Cuba you might consider flying there. If you are going for the food, pick a different ship. If you like fewer people on your cruise this is a really nice ship. (1800 passengers, 900 crew) Updated in 2018 does not mean brand new, so there are some things that newer ships have that this one doesn’t. If you like to gamble, the casino is small, but whenever it was open there were available seats for card games and slot machines. Double check if your cruise is all-inclusive on drinks and if so, DO NOT purchase the premium package. The premium dinner package is probably not worth it either unless you eat at Cagney’s every dinner meal. Wait at ports before disembarking and you will have a faster and more stress free transition onto land. 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Sail Date May 2019
My wife chose this cruise as she wanted to visit Havana, Cuba. We arrived the morning of departure but didn't check in at the boat until 1pm. Lines were just getting busy. They moved quickly and we were on board after about 15-20 ... Read More
My wife chose this cruise as she wanted to visit Havana, Cuba. We arrived the morning of departure but didn't check in at the boat until 1pm. Lines were just getting busy. They moved quickly and we were on board after about 15-20 minutes inside the terminal getting our room keys/info. Make sure to have all your paperwork/reservation info and your passports ready to go when you get in line. Once on board our rooms weren't ready. The crew onboard had set up an area within the Bliss Lounge that you could check your luggage at so you wouldn't have to drag it around with you. The crew member gave us a "receipt" for our luggage and my wife and I then walked around the ship. It was raining lightly at the time so the pool deck was closed. We found one of the restaurants and had a nice lunch. While eating lunch an announcement was made that our rooms were ready. After lunch we claimed our luggage from Bliss lounge and found our room. We were on Deck #6 towards the front of the boat. Our hallway only had 7-8 rooms on that side of it so the noise level was very low and foot traffic - none. It was a great spot. Like most ships our room was small but had enough space/storage to handle a large suitcase and a carry on case. My wife also had a large carryon purse/bag that didn't take up much space. Room was very clean and bright with our large window. No balcony. Bathroom is the only downside to these rooms. Very small, but then again you are on a ship. We ate most of our dinners in one of the main dining rooms. We didn't do too much for lunch. Breakfast we did the buffets. The food at both the buffets and the dining rooms were great. The menus in the dining rooms had a nice variety and actually had flavor. If you are a foodie and enjoy nice dinners/lunches, you won't be disappointed. Our cruise did include the free beverage package. There are a few drinks on their menu that you will see a charge for. They usually included a special cup or some other type of special offer with the drink. If you just want a beer, wine, whiskey, mixed drink, or soda, then it was included. You would think that people would take advantage of the package and just cut loose a little too much. To my surprise it wasn't that bad. You had a few that took it a little too far, but for the most part people stayed within their limits and just enjoyed their trip. Our first port of call was Key West. For some reason our ship didn't dock until 1pm. We then had to be back on the boat by 6pm. Our excursion was to start at 1:30pm, but by the time we got off the boat and to our excursion starting point, it was around 2pm. Our excursion lasted approximately 3 hours. My wife and I had basically 1 hour to shop around Key West. We would have liked more time to experience the area. Our excursion was fun though. We did the Key Lime Bike tour. Got a little hot as the weather was in the upper 80's. Our tour guide, James, was fun and full of Key West history/knowledge. The Key Lime pie at the end of the ride was great. The one thing with the Sun is there isn't a lot of night activities scheduled other than the main show. My wife and I aren't big into dancing, and we don't gamble too much. The nightly schedule would include a few couples "game show" type shows. We did watch one called the "perfect couple". Three couples would have to perform certain tasks with their spouse/significant other. It was funny and a good time. The ship also had a comedian on board that week and we caught his "clean" show and the "adult" show. Both were funny and had us in tears at one point. The next morning we were in Havana. The ship sits in the City's harbor and when you exit the pier terminal you step right out into a very busy street of Havana. There are classic cars and horse drawn carriages just waiting to give tourists rides. Some other cruisers on our boat noted that they rented one of the classis cars for a tour of the city for around $40-$50 US dollars. They said the tour lasted about an hour. Havana is not the cleanest place in the world but the atmosphere and the people were great. Old Havana was fun to walk around in. The tight cobble-stoned streets with the tropical colors of the buildings were great. We did an excursion with a company outside of the cruise and had lunch at a local restaurant along with visits to local landmarks. It was a great time. Our itinerary included an overnight stay in Havana. I think it was so the people who wanted to shell out $250 per person for the Tropicana show excursion could do so. My wife and I didn't do that one. We stayed on the ship and enjoyed a nice dinner at Cagney's Steakhouse. Again the food was great. My steak was a little over cooked, but it wasn't terrible. The cut of meat was great and they included the house steak sauce which was very good. We had a nice desert to top off the meal. Because we were celebrating a special occasion, our waitress brought out a second desert for us. The next day we were heading back to Florida. Thursday was basically a day at sea. We didn't do much other than sit by the pool and watch some of the poolside games the activity staff had going on. Would have liked to have the morning hours to explore Havana a little more. My wife and I took advantage of the early disembarkation of the ship. We had an early flight out of Orlando. The ship docked at 7am. For the early disembarkation you have to be off the ship by 8:30am. You also have to carry your own luggage off. This was not a problem given our one large suitcase and carry on bag. The exit off the ship was easy with all walking ramps down into the terminal. No stairs or other issues that would have to worry about. Overall a great trip. Would go back to Havana and Key West again. Would prefer a little more time at each stop. The ship was great and the staff was amazing. Highly recommend the Norwegian Sun. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Apparently, being from the Northeast, I was unaware of a delightful thing known as a “swarm of love bugs”. They were positively everywhere. Inside, outside, in staterooms and dining rooms. Some even survived for several days. ... Read More
Apparently, being from the Northeast, I was unaware of a delightful thing known as a “swarm of love bugs”. They were positively everywhere. Inside, outside, in staterooms and dining rooms. Some even survived for several days. Needless to say, the first day was shockingly bad. I am not sure what could have been done differently, but this was outrageously bad. Key West is a lovely place. Many things to do and see. This ship has a bizarre policy requiring tender tickets for a walk off port?!? Luckily we had an excursion and did not have to deal with that. This port stop was far too short. Havana is the opposite of Key West. It was Dirty, smelly, and had wild dogs inside the port! Water in the harbor is very dark due to pollution. Cobblestone courtyard across the street had brown, fetid liquid in between each stone. We took a tour in an antique auto, the driver could not speak English, but he was polite. The ship was in port overnight, it was such a waste. Food in the buffet was “different”, the themes (Asian, Latin) were attempted but they did not succeed. The basics offered late night in the great outdoors were excellent. Sports bar did not show playoff games- very odd things were on instead. Comedian (Jeff Nease) was the highlight of the trip, both shows were extraordinary. Win a cruise bingo was in the Bliss lounge, (far too small) and at the same time as the Latitudes party. Room steward was excellent, he made towel animals every night! He worked very hard to clean up after the bug situation. The ship had a Cuba shop that allowed for purchase of souvenirs. Disembarkation was swift and efficient. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
My first cruise but my wife's seventh we chose this at fairly short notice because we wanted to visit Cuba. Getting on and off the ship were a breeze, we boarded early it took us a total of about 20-30 mins from when we entered the ... Read More
My first cruise but my wife's seventh we chose this at fairly short notice because we wanted to visit Cuba. Getting on and off the ship were a breeze, we boarded early it took us a total of about 20-30 mins from when we entered the terminal until we were on the ship. Just please remember it's a small ship not a mega ship, a great place to unwind and de-stress, having said that there are enough things for kids to do as well. It was a wonderful first cruise for me and my wife said the best she's been on by far, she been on them all. There were a lot of Europeans, South Americans and Aussies on board which made it more fun for us, learning about them and their Countries. MSC converts we are, can't wait for the next one, sooner rather than later i hope. Cabin was nicely laid out, bathroom was large with a bath and the balcony was a good size. Everything was spotlessly clean from day 1 until we left the ship. Our cabin steward, Anna, was amazing nothing too much trouble and always had a smile on her face. We dined almost exclusively in La Pergola which was very good, praise to the Manager and Host Brenda who were brilliant all the time. The food was excellent every meal, in fact after the 3rd Day we had trouble choosing, the Manager asked if we trusted him? We did and he chose our meals almost every day from the on and he didn't disappoint us once. We ate at the buffet on the day we got there and the roast beef was very good. All bars and other eating areas looked to be good as well. The shows were good and thankfully kept fairly short, which in my opinion was all the better for that. Now to the Service we had an extraordinary experience with all staff on board. They were so nice, helpful and happy even when people gave them a hard time for seemingly nothing. There are several people who deserve a special mention, Manooj one of the Officers, Anil Singh and JackyLou Natagoc from the Bar Service staff were all outstanding .They really made the cruise that bit more special with their attitudes, happy faces and outstanding personalities and service. Ports and excursions were all great from cooking Jerk Chicken in Ochos Rios and Mayan Tour in Cozumel. The best port by far for us was Havana, the people were wonderful and really made the place a joy to visit. We did a Hemmimgway Tour which was informative and a lot of fun we had a blast. The second day we did a Classic Car ride in a pink 50's Bel Air again this was great and our driver Jesil took us all over the city. The Architecture of the older buildings in truly wonderful, the Russian era buildings were not as beautiful, of course, however the gave a great insight into how people lived. The Flea Market is a must do it's a short walk from the ship, out of the Port turn left about 5 blocks. There are some wonderful souvenirs here paintings, leather goods, t-shirts and so much more. Don't forget some cigars and rum from a legitimate source. Also please take some candy for the kids there, you give one piece out and 20 more show up. We are also going to take some kids clothing on our next visit. Havana, Cuba and it's citizens have their problems but what a joy they were to meet. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Went on Key West-Cuba cruise as part of a group.. Very disappointed with customer service both on board and contact with company. First day they closed the pool all day due to love bug infestation as well as Great Outdoors Cafe but did ... Read More
Went on Key West-Cuba cruise as part of a group.. Very disappointed with customer service both on board and contact with company. First day they closed the pool all day due to love bug infestation as well as Great Outdoors Cafe but did have it ready by Day 2.. Had "handicap accessible" room which was fine-our room attendant was wonderful. Chose the 3 night specialty dining pkg. as one of our choices (also did shipboard credit).All 3 specialty restaurants were good-Le Bistro, Moderno Churrascaria and La Cucina( veal dish was very salty)-all had excellent wait service and food was very good.However, unless you know where they are and how to get to them it can be a challenge. Ate in Main dining room last night-was supposed to eat with our group but the the reservation time was changed by the staff and the person in charge of our group wasn't told, so we ate by ourselves. Food was good-nothing to rave about. Asked for a Coke and got a cappuccino instead. Did eat in the Garden Cafe and Great Outdoors Cafe for lunch a couple of times-food was okay-again nothing to rave about but wait staff were very good. Only one entertainment show nightly in the main theater, except last night had an extra "adult" show. Key West port-we had to be transported by trolley b/c ship pulled into military port and brought back the same way, but there were enough trolleys/trams running every 10-15 min back to ship. Ship was pretty quiet-not many kids on board. Cuba portion was good-ship pulled into main terminal-easy access into town. Did not like the fact that you have to pay for bottled water esp. if you need it for medical reasons-found out after 2 days I could get ice water delivered to room if requested but can't bring back any water/drinks from outside ship back on board-you can bring back empty bottles/travel containers. Also was told I had to pay for regular coffee in restaurant but not up in buffet/cafe (which I found out later on was incorrect-only specialty coffees are a fee). Drinks were okay-part of our pkg. but watered down. No real duty-free shopping to speak of-small place on deck 7 next to smoky casino-1 store divided into sections, and jewelry place across from it. Was a small place selling Cuba-theme items on Atrium level open after we got to Cuba and did have a few table on Atrium selling cheaper jewelry. Ship layout is poor-restaurants all on one side and had to go up/down 1 level to get to Main dining room from Level 5. Had to go through main buffet place to get to Garden Cafe. Too much Cuban/Spanish music-would have liked them to have a variety but the same type every day by the pool was a bit much. Did not partake in the shipboard activities-none really were very appealing or caught our interest. Some of the staff should be able to understand English and seem to not understand at times when I asked basic questions-if they were not sure then they should be told to ask another staff member to help (the coffee issue). I don't think I will travel on this ship again and not sure if I would travel again on Norwegian- wrote to customer service after trip and still haven't heard back from them (it is now July). Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We went on the 7 day RT cruise from Miami. Never cruised with MSC before and actually had pretty low expectations from the reviews, but thought we would go with an open mind because we really wanted to see Cuba and it was a good price plus ... Read More
We went on the 7 day RT cruise from Miami. Never cruised with MSC before and actually had pretty low expectations from the reviews, but thought we would go with an open mind because we really wanted to see Cuba and it was a good price plus we got the Easy drink package and WiFi for free. They will match your status with other lines, so be sure to do that before you go. We flew into Fort Lauderdale and used the ships transfer to Miami. FLL is a Southwest hub and the prices were better than Miami. We had to wait at the airport for a while before they had a full bus to take to Miami. Next time, I would probably just taken a taxi or Uber. One thing I want to note here is that the porters at the Port of Miami are extremely pushy regarding tips. Our bus driver told us the porters would pick up the luggage after it was unloaded and we didn't have to do anything. The porters made us bring it to them and put it on the cart for them and then held their hands out for a tip to "make sure it got to the cabin safely". This sounded like extortion to me and it does not make the cruise lines look very good (even though the porters are Port Authority employees). Our dinner mates were from London and they were appalled by how the porters acted. Embarkation in Miami was super smooth, walked right on the ship around 1:30 pm. This was the easiest embarkation we've ever experienced. I think it helped that they did not process your credit card at embarkation, which was different than I'd experienced before, there was a machine on board that you used to link your card with your room, again super easy, just different. This cruise was only 25% Americans so there were many languages spoken. All announcements were made in at least 5 languages. Also, a lot of people did not show up for the mandatory safety drill, which was frustrating waiting for the crew to round them up while we waiting for them outside in the heat. We had ocean view cabin 9271, it seemed similar to OV on Royal Caribbean's smaller ships. The bed was only a double, I would have liked to had a king, but it was fine, and we knew this before we boarded. The air conditioning in this room did not work very well, I had to contact customer service multiple times to get it fixed, but it did get fixed, and they sent us a bottle of wine and strawberries to apologize, which was a nice touch. Our room steward was very efficient and was friendly. A plus was that we were near the rear of the ship and there was a deck with seating close to our stateroom. We had first seating in the main dining room. Since this is an Italian cruise line, I was expecting good Italian food, but I was disappointed. My husband got the New York strip steak on the standard menu every night, he said it was very good. I got different things, but nothing stands out as my favorite. The service was ok, some nights were better than others, be prepared to order dessert with your meal. We had breakfast in the dining room and it was standard, same thing every day, nothing great. We found the buffet to be always crowded and the choices very limited. But don't miss the pizza out on the pool deck, while some of the toppings were a little crazy at times (like hot dogs, tuna, and many other oddities), the cheese pizza was great, best I've ever had on a cruise. As far as shows, we only went to one and walked out, they are kind of quirky because of so many languages spoken on board. In Cuba, the ship brought in dancers that were similar to the Tropicana, which was nice for people that didn't go on the excursion. We didn't participate in many activities or entertainment. It looked like they had a nice kids program, but we didn't have any kids with us. Overall, the staff was friendly and helpful, very much the small ship feel. They are a family owned cruise line and I got that vibe. They seem to really be trying to win the American market. They are employing experienced people from other popular US cruise lines, which seems to be helping. We only took one excursion from the ship and that was a tour of Grand Cayman, it was fine, no problems, small van with good air conditioning. We went to the sea turtle farm, Governor's beach, the town of Hell (which was disappointing, just a tourist trap), and Tortuga Rum Cake factory. We loved Cuba and were so happy we were able to experience it before the travel ban went into affect. Will definitely go back if it is lifted. Disembarkation was fine, well organized. Our luggage was neatly lined up and waiting for us to pick it up when our color was called. It is important to wait until your color is called, many people did not, so they had to stand there waiting for their luggage, which caused some congestion. We took the ship's shuttle back to FLL, which was very easy since they had crew directing people at the door going out. We went into this cruise with low expectations, but it ended up being a good cruise. We like MSC better than a couple other popular US lines. As long as they have good deals, we will be back. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Wife and I have been on 10 or 15 NCL cruises and we liked them all except this one. Food was not up to par. The shows were poor. The cruise director was poor but the assistant cruise director was excellent. The piano bars were very ... Read More
Wife and I have been on 10 or 15 NCL cruises and we liked them all except this one. Food was not up to par. The shows were poor. The cruise director was poor but the assistant cruise director was excellent. The piano bars were very good. Cabin was small but OK. Room Stewart was terrible. He never vacuumed the carpet for the entire four day cruise. The waiters were very good. NCL never again. Sorry. The good news is that it its a short ship so there is less walking and less crowds. Pools were alway crowded. we did manage to get into a hot tub once. Food in he cafe was not what we are accustomed to on cruise ships. Next time we will choose another line. Free drinks were a real plus however we do not drink. It was a pleasure not to be hassled to buy drinks. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019

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