287 Norwegian Epic Entertainment Cruise Reviews

This was our second Norwegian Cruise- the first was on Norwegian Sky which was a terrible experience as well but we blamed the weather for the most part. We have been on almost a dozen of other cruises between Carnival & the most ... Read More
This was our second Norwegian Cruise- the first was on Norwegian Sky which was a terrible experience as well but we blamed the weather for the most part. We have been on almost a dozen of other cruises between Carnival & the most recent on the Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas. We thought we would give Norwegian a second chance on the Epic- which looked like an amazing ship! 2 days into the cruise and my husband and I decided it would be our last Norwegian Cruise! Getting on the boat was just like every other cruise- we were on by 12-1pm. There was no entertainment by the pools- not a dj not a band. The Sail away party was a complete bust! There wasn't one!! There was a small space in between the 2 pool bars and the deck to walk through into the buffet area which was always a hassle to get through- especially with 2 children under the age of 10. Moving onto the inside of the boat- which was very nice! Always clean- however the staterooms were the size of a walk-in closet- and that may be exaggerating a touch. You walked into the room and to your left was the shower with a frosted glass door and to your right was the toilet with a frosted glass door as well- the sink which was no bigger than 12" wide was at the end of your bed! Super weird!! You had to take turns walking through the room because two people could not fit through the end of the bed and the cupboard/dresser area at the same time. These were by far the smallest rooms we have ever seen! There was definitely not enough storage for 4 people! Our stateroom was a balcony and we have never stayed in a interior room but I have to believe there are interior rooms bigger than this balcony room! The entertainment on this boat was good- I was very impressed with the amount of different music blends. However there was hardly any entertainment by the poolside! No activities by the pool and very rarely was there a dj or band. The bar service on this boat was AWFUL! If you tried to get a drink by one of the two pool side bars you would wait for atleast a half an hour! There was hardly any waiters throughout the pool deck offering drink service. This was our last Norwegian cruise- never again!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
My husband and I booked this cruise not realizing it fell on Spring Break for some colleges in Florida. The cruise ended up being filled with Spring Breakers. We didn't mind - but we also didn't plan to hang out at the main pool ... Read More
My husband and I booked this cruise not realizing it fell on Spring Break for some colleges in Florida. The cruise ended up being filled with Spring Breakers. We didn't mind - but we also didn't plan to hang out at the main pool much. College students dominated the main pool area. Also our itinerary was affected by a nor-easter so the Great Stirrup Caye port was cancelled. The Nassau Port was pushed back a day. We basically cruised in circles. Since we had a balcony we still enjoyed the cruise. We may have gotten a little stir crazy if we had booked an interior room. Ship - the ship overall was how we expected from reading other reviews. The layout is odd, the Epic doesn't flow like other cruise ships we've experienced. For example, the deck above the main pool doesn't connect with the deck on the front of the ship.You have to climb interior stairs or use the elevator by the outdoor buffet to get to the front area. Bring your own drink because once you do get there a bar is not easy to get to. That area does have nice loungers and is quiet. Cabin - we had a balcony on the 11th floor. As stated in other reviews, the bathroom situation is odd. We didn't mind the toilet and shower being separate but could understand how others would not prefer that set up. The room had a ton of storage areas which was nice. Dining - We ate at the Garden Café Buffet for breakfast and lunch. We were satisfied with the options. If you want a quiet place to eat at the buffet and are willing to walk down stairs - go to the front of the ship and walk down to La Cucina. The restaurant is open seating for the buffet during breakfast/lunch. We ate at Taste once, the food was above average and the service average. We ate at Cagney's 2x and Wasabi once with our dining package. The crab cakes were our favorite at Cagney's. All of the sushi at Wasabi was delicious, there was a small upcharge. We thought it was worth it. We tried to eat at the Manhattan Room the last evening. We thought there would be something prime rib for the final night (or something comparable) and were disappointed. We ended up checking out the Garden Café Buffet instead and found pretty good prime rib on the buffet. We were impressed with the options on the evening buffet. Bars - The bar service was greatly affected by the Spring Breaker crowds. There were long lines at the bars on the main deck. There were several people from the main deck that were riding the elevators up and down to the lower floors to get drinks at the other bars (Maltings/martini bar/etc) because it was quicker to get a drink that way! We also found that the Martini Bar wasn't using martini glasses and would put "martinis" in plastic cups. Again we didn't mind but we heard others complaining about it. Overall we were not impressed with the bar service. We've experienced various ships and cruise lines and thought the bar service was below average, even when the bars were not busy. We usually find a bar or two that we really enjoyed on each ship but none stood out on the Epic. Entertainment and Activities - We spent a lot of time in the Cavern Club in the evenings. We loved listening to the band Siglo. They were the best cruise band we have experienced. There were a few other bands that played in the Cavern as well. We enjoyed the rock climbing wall. It was open for a few hours every full day. There were never too many people waiting to climb. The provide shoes and chalk. We were pleasantly surprised that some of the route options were quite challenging. Even though the cruise didn't end up being what we expected, we had a great time. We will cruise Norwegian again and would consider trying the Epic again, but probably not around Spring Break. If you are considering the Epic feel free to watch our vacation videos from this trip on youtube channel Explorcation: Epic Cruise: https://youtu.be/iBxOtS8EEi0 Rock Climbing on the Epic: https://youtu.be/C52ZJvXtt3M We always enjoy watching others' vacation videos when preparing for our cruises. We also have videos of the Norwegian Escape. Happy Cruising!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
The Ship was in great shape the rooms were awesome. The entertainment was just ok. We went to the Julia Barr comedy show(Just ok), Burn the Floor(Was the best show), Priscilla Queen of the Desert the Musical (Pretty good), and the Cirque ... Read More
The Ship was in great shape the rooms were awesome. The entertainment was just ok. We went to the Julia Barr comedy show(Just ok), Burn the Floor(Was the best show), Priscilla Queen of the Desert the Musical (Pretty good), and the Cirque Dreams Epicurean (By far the worst show and not worth the money at all. The Bars were pretty slow and would take at times 20 minutes to get drinks. The Bartender G.K. at O'Sheehan's was really good and made sure your drinks were to your liking but they were just overwhelmed with the crowds. I feel Celebrity and Carnival were in my past experience a lot better equipped for bars and servers. Do not expect to board the ship and have drinks waiting for you. The Food was on par with the other cruises I have been on, Nothing over all special. I will say the Le Bistro was the best dining I had on the ship. I would probably not go on another Norwegian cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Went with a group. The ship was very nice and so was the staff. It just felt crowded all the time. Too many people on a ship that size. We have been on bigger ships and never felt crowded. No service at all in the buffet area. Bar service ... Read More
Went with a group. The ship was very nice and so was the staff. It just felt crowded all the time. Too many people on a ship that size. We have been on bigger ships and never felt crowded. No service at all in the buffet area. Bar service was very slow. Cabin service was great. Entertainment was fair. Best enterteainment was the Circus dinner and it cost extra. The Priscilla show was offensive to say the least. We are long time cruisers on othe lines. This was our first on Norwegian. The disembarkation was terrible and everyone was complaining. Never had this problem on 40+ cruises. We may try Norwegian again but on a different ship out of a different port and we live 45 minutes from Port Canaveral. I know cruise lines are cutting staff to reduce costs but it's becoming more apparent with each cruise. The bar service and dining room service was good but just not enough servers for that crowd. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
Didn't like the food on the buffet. Everything had the same taste. Had to wait longer to get on boat, Shows where good though. Casino shut down alot, Elevators are unreal. You have to wait a long time to get on one. Most time passed ... Read More
Didn't like the food on the buffet. Everything had the same taste. Had to wait longer to get on boat, Shows where good though. Casino shut down alot, Elevators are unreal. You have to wait a long time to get on one. Most time passed our floor after we pushed botton .so we had to use stairs alot. We are senior so wasnt to happy about that. Like Carnival cruise way better. Food was better for sure. We only waited 1/2 to load. Got our suitcases sooner. Never waited more that a min. ofr a elevator. To many drunks on board. Shoulnt open bars till at least lunch time. Lot people dont drink and we get tried of all the drunks that early. My paper for my tip wasnt delivered till MIDDLE night or by 7 am morning we left. Then i got it up on tv. You already took it out. I would of never tipped.. At least on carnival you go to a computer and do it the night before yourself . Didn't hear the first day about fire alarm drill. seen everybody going somewhere when we ask where they said all boat was to meet. We never heard it then when we got there it was just over. Then next day we where given a time on our paper to be there at 11:00 am. We went to the island at 10:00 We where on vacation was ;not taking time from vacation to do a drill. Should of had that while we where all waiting to get our suitcases. and it should been on our beds and announced so we would of heard it. When in our rooms we couldn't hear any announcements. We didn't need reservation to see a show on our carnival cruise. It was first come first show. Not enough seat in th aluim place. We had to stand for all the shows. Even got there 1/2 early. Need more seating. Defiantly would go with Carnival next time. only second cruise we took but Carnival was way better. Other people thought same as us on many items above. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
we could never get a dining time at a reasonable hour...what's wrong with the way all the other cruise lines do it.. 2 seatings and you know your time and your table!! love it!! also the smoke is horrid on NCL..even the no smoking ... Read More
we could never get a dining time at a reasonable hour...what's wrong with the way all the other cruise lines do it.. 2 seatings and you know your time and your table!! love it!! also the smoke is horrid on NCL..even the no smoking areas of the casino smelled of smoke! a disgusting smell! i could even smell the smoke in the eating areas.. the food in o sheehan's was not very good and we never ate there again... we did enjoy your bartender allen in Maltings..although they served martinins in regular glasses!!! What?? there needs to be a railing in the theatre...the steps are too hard to walk up and down without a railing in the middle.. the entertainment was very good we enjoyed Burn the Floor and Pricilla, Queen of the Desert! also the circus show was delightful and the meal wonderful! i want to thank the staff for helping me as i was in a boot with a broken foot and they went above and beyond to help me!! Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
We flew in the day before and enjoyed a lovely day in Cocoa Beach prior to the cruise. Our hotel overlooked the ocean and we could relax and enjoy a beach day before heading to the ship. On the recommendation of TripAdvisor, we went to ... Read More
We flew in the day before and enjoyed a lovely day in Cocoa Beach prior to the cruise. Our hotel overlooked the ocean and we could relax and enjoy a beach day before heading to the ship. On the recommendation of TripAdvisor, we went to Florida's Fresh Grill for dinner and it was by far the best dining experience of our vacation. Highly recommend! We have always liked sailing on the bigger ships and booked this cruise for it's Eastern itinerary and to try NCL for the first time. Unfortunately, due to the hurricanes last season, our trip got switched to Western. Obviously, this was done due to damage at ports, and we did get an extra port because of the change, but it is disappointing to pay for Eastern and get the less expensive Western for the same price. The ship itself was disappointing from first sight. It is very boxy and has none of the styling of previous ships we've been on. It looked like a giant floating hotel, rather than a ship. The layout was awful, from the weird bathroom arrangements to the lack of outdoor space on all but the top decks. Due to the amount of balcony cabins, there was no space on lower levels to get out and explore the ship. Only went on deck 7 once on the outside and there was no view (obstructed by lifeboats) and full of smokers. The casino is in the middle of deck 6 and open to below in Taste, one of the MDRs. There was no way to avoid the smoke and it permeated several areas surrounding it. Even some closed off bars nearby (the Cavern, O'Shean's) were smelling strongly of smoke. I heard many others complaining of this throughout the week. Due to the layouts of decks 5,6,and 7, it was difficult to go from one end to the other without getting cutoff by a dining room or the casino. The shops were also not that exciting, with one (the one with the booze and sundries) being completely separate from the others, making it harder to locate. We also found the deck layout tough. With so many passengers onboard, all looking to get some sun, the loungers were taken up by 8am by chair hogs and with half the deck dedicated to smokers, there really wasn't too many options. The dining was ok. Not great by any means, but hubby and I love cooking and found the food quite boring. It seemed that all the attention was given to the specialty dining so if you wanted a great meal, you had to pay. We have never felt the need to book a specialty restaurant - the MDR food has always been very good to excellent on each of our previous cruises. Three times hubby ordered the steak from the "every night available" side of the menu because there were no appealing options. I ordered the linguine with clams one night and it was really good with the pasta cooked perfectly. Hubby ordered the spaghetti carbonara the next night and it was so salty he could barely eat a few bites. The chicken cordon bleu was inedible, prime rib was awful, there was no lobster night (which has been offered on all of our other cruises), and desserts were boring. Highlights were the braised lamb shanks, steak, and french onion soup. We also had the Cirque Dreams dinner experience and the meal was a caprese salad with prosciutto, filet and garlic shrimp and a trio of desserts. Aside from the steak being a little too overcooked for my liking, it was very well done. The show, costumes and staff were amazing! Entertainment was the absolute highlight of the cruise. Everything was top notch. We saw Burn the Floor, Cirque Dreams, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, two comedians and the Epic Beatles. Book ahead of time for everything ( we booked before the cruise for what we could). Every show was sold out during the cruise with some standby seating. The only thing I missed that I would have liked was the Escape the High Top, an escape room type of event. We also enjoyed the Ice Bar just for the experience of it. Drinks were WAY too strong but it was a fun time. Service was friendly for the most part. The washy-washy-happy-happy girl spraying your hands with disinfectant at the buffet was always smiling, our room steward was nice and we had a clean room every day and towel animals most days. The entertainment staff were fun and lively. Bar service was slow but to be expected with the large amount of passengers on board. Bartenders were always friendly but I didn't have a "favourite" that I would recommend. We had only booked one shore excursion (the stingrays in Grand Cayman) and that was cancelled due to the waves. We ended up taking a shuttle to 7 mile beach instead. For Nassau, I researched ahead and planned a self guided walking tour which let us explore on our own. We enjoyed our day there and ended with a light lunch before heading back to the ship. In Falmouth, we stayed only in the secure area and shopped in the port before heading back to the beach. We paid half the price for my husband's watch than was quoted on board. The perfume I wanted was also $20 less in Falmouth than on the ship. We really enjoyed our day in Great Stirrup Cay. It was relaxing and sunny and we headed to the third beach area which was substantially less crowded than the other two. They are building towers to allow for zip lining in the future so there will be lots to do there when it is completed. There were plenty of loungers, and all cabanas and clamshells were sold out prior to our arrival so if that's what you're looking for, book early. People were parasailing, lounging on floaters, snorkeling and generally having a great time. Disembarkation was easy and quick. The lineup after we got our luggage looked huge but only took us about 10 minutes to get through. I would try NCL again but would NEVER want to try the Epic again. Even crew members at the NextCruise desk were quick to let us know that other ships had different layouts. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
The entertainment onboard the Epic is the BEST at sea!! Production shows, musician, and variety of entertainment are all amazing!!! The staff is also wonderful... very attentive, helpful and friendly. The ship's layout is very ... Read More
The entertainment onboard the Epic is the BEST at sea!! Production shows, musician, and variety of entertainment are all amazing!!! The staff is also wonderful... very attentive, helpful and friendly. The ship's layout is very poor. There is no mid-ship elevator... and either end elevator is missing at least one floor, meaning you frequently have to walk from one end of the ship to the other to take the elevator to your destination. For anyone with any difficulty walking the 1000+ feet length of the ship (as is the case with my mom), this ship is VERY difficult to navigate. Embarkment: Port Canaveral doesn't have any wheelchairs available until you've already gone through security (read: long line standing and waiting), and walked the length of the entire terminal and gone through your registration process... THEN you can get a wheelchair to board. Food: The only specialty restaurant we dinned at was Shanghai's... the service was great, the food was marginal at best. The buffet was loud, crowded, and food was average to poor. BUT... we ate MANY means in The Manhattan Club and O'Sheenahan's. Service in both of these restaurants was great and the food in Manhattan Club was spectacular!!! Plus they have live music, a dance floor and avery quiet/upscale atmosphere. Taste serves the exact same menu as Manhattan club, but is less formal. Taste is also much louder and we didn't enjoy it as much. The outdoor dinning was impossible to enjoy because there was always so much wind up there. One morning we ate there, and the wind blew the coffee out of the cup!!! Breakfast ANYWHERE on the ship is marginal at best, and basically is over at 9 or 9:30am. There is a large 'gab' mid-day when the only place to dine is O'Sheenahan's (but their food is great). Entertainment: DON'T MISS Burn The Floor!!! It is amazing!! Also the dueling pianos in Howl at the Moon were great!! Priscilla Queen of the Desert was a hoot, with amazing costumes, wigs, music, etc... but it is NOT for those who are easily offended. Cirque Dreams was a wonderful show, but the food was poor. Buy the standard ticket & skip the meal. DO try to take part in the activities in the atrium... game shows, dance lessons, singing contests, etc. At first I thought this was silly and didn't want to go... but once I DID, I wished I'd gone sooner! The staff makes these shows amazing! Plan on attending the "GLOW PARTY"... it is REALLY FUN!!! No matter your age, you'll find it a real trip. Also, this is the first ship I've been on that specifically made accommodations to help single travelers meet fellow passengers. Stateroom: We were in a Family Balcony Mini-suite. The room was quite large and has TONS of storage!! We put everything away and still had several empty cupboards!!! The bathroom wasn't as bad as I thought it might be... BUT our 'shower' was in a tub and it had a VERY high side (much higher than yours at home would). VERY difficult to get in and out of. The balcony was large but the chairs were in poor shape, and one was broke, plus only table there was a tiny little side table... not room to eat there. The hallways are a bit confusing, but what ship isn't? Some other thoughts: Additional charges: THIS was one of the real bug-a-boos on this cruise... I felt like I was being nickle and dimed to death!!!! The beauty of cruising is it's all inclusive... not with Norwegian! Even the "complementary" restaurants have menu items that require an 'up charge'. And of course, there are about half the restaurants that are specialty and require an additional charge. PLUS... if you want a Pepsi (they don't have Coke) anywhere, be prepared to pay! I hate the way they bill the gratuity, daily/per person on the bill. It makes your bill VERY lengthy and it felt like every time I looked at it it was another page long!! Many of the onboard 'activities' required an additional charge, and even the Cirque Dreams show (without the meal) requires an additional charge. AND... although they sell this as 'free style cruising'... you must make a reservation to do anything!!! I understand that with 4000+ people on the ship, but it really removes any option for being spontaneous. Also... there is no central atrium... no mid-ship elevator... and the elevators that are there, are totally enclosed and dark!!! When I saw the first one open, I felt like I was stepping into an elevator in Las Vegas in 1980! Overall the ship's entertainment and staff were AMAZING and in many ways made up for the defects of the ship itself. However I doubt I would take Epic again... the ship was too big and had too many people on board. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
After 5 cruises with NCL, this was the worst one. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't what we expect with NCL. THE GOOD: - The entertainment was the best of any of the cruises I have done with NCL or Royal Caribbean. - The ... Read More
After 5 cruises with NCL, this was the worst one. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't what we expect with NCL. THE GOOD: - The entertainment was the best of any of the cruises I have done with NCL or Royal Caribbean. - The ship is huge but they did a great job making it feel like a normal ship. - Bartenders are all nice and can make good drinks. - Posh is amazing - Water slides are fun - Casino was big THE OK: - My wife has a food allergy. Normally NCL is amazing with pre-orders, this time it was a little more of a challenge but she got her food in the end. - Casino table games start more than many vegas casinos -- Pai Gow $25 THE BAD: - Food is not as good as every other ship we have been on, even the specialty restaurants weren't as good as the Jewel class ships. Food service wasn't great. - The curve design of the rooms is annoying. I knew this going in but it does render the couch totally useless. - Pools suck, small and too warm - DJ from the Glow (white Hot) party wasn't good and the party was kinda lame Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
We chose this ship because we wanted to go to Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. We flew into Orlando and took the Go Port Canaveral transfer package from airport/ to hotel/ to the ship/ to the airport. It was an easy process. It took ... Read More
We chose this ship because we wanted to go to Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. We flew into Orlando and took the Go Port Canaveral transfer package from airport/ to hotel/ to the ship/ to the airport. It was an easy process. It took about an hour to get from the hotel to the port. IMPORTANT TIP: To speed past much of the line, find the elevator. It drops you at the top of the stairs! At that point, it still took 45 minutes to get on the boat. So, any shortcut helps! We stayed in a mini suite on the 13 floor. This was a good location, as it was a short 2 floors up the stairs to the pool deck and buffet. The gym was up one deck. The room was very strange, as many reported. We adjusted without much problem. There was a lot of storage space and closet space. However, electric outlets were sparse. They were located under the cabinet opposite the bed. Not very convenient at all. Bring your own body wash and shampoo. They have some stinky herbal stuff that was short of disgusting. And lady's, there is no conditioner!!! Bring your own. Last year we were in a suite on the Dawn, and had some awesome Bvlgari products. This is our 3rd Norwegian cruise. This was our worst in terms of service. We had the drink package. It was hard to find a bartender that was attentive or not rude. No one smiled. They seemed annoyed to be there. We never experienced that on other ships. We were in Spice H20 most of the time during the day. Finding waiters was difficult, at best. We waived, yelled, etc.. to get their attention (when there was one to be seen). They would wave and then make their way after 5 minutes or so. Again, annoyed to be there and no smile or friendly words. The restaurants were OK. The menu never changed, so if you wanted variety, you needed to try another entre or go to a specialty restaurant. NOTE: We usually dress up for dinner and got great service in the Manhattan. However, we ate in Cagney's twice- both times the service was without a smile. The experience in Teppanyaki was good. It was entertaining. The food was just ok. I had steak. It was under seasoned. So was the rice. My wife had shrimp and scallops. The scallops were very fishy and seemed undercooked. The Garden Cafe was fine, however, many of the "American" dishes were far from tasting that way. I think they need to invest in an American cookbook, because American staples should look and taste accordingly. Pool Deck- get there early and reserve a spot, or you may find slim pickings on finding chairs- especially at Spice H20. We like being in the hot tubs. One day they were very hot, other days cool or luke warm. No consistency. Entertainment- I thought Norwegian was supposed to be "freestyle"? There were many venues that required reservations. Even tenders? We reserved the Burn the Floor show several months in advance. Upon boarding the ship, we had a letter in our cabin that said we were bumped, and rescheduled to another show (on the last night of the cruise). Not cool. Also, we paid for premium seats for the Cirque show and were seated upstairs. We didn't get what we paid for. The show was outstanding, but we got the bait and switch. The Epic Beatles were also very good, however, get there at least an hour early if you want a chance at getting to sit down. The bartender is not very friendly in there either. We got into the dueling piano bar, which was OK... I've seen better singers. We never were able to get tickets to Escape the Big Top. This ship is big and crowded. Tours- In Jamaica, we went to Dunn's River Falls plus the VIP Beach tour. This was a very good experience. In Cayman- we went shopping and went to a restaurant and had lobster tails for lunch. When we returned, we found many people who reserved tours had them canceled due to rough seas. We decided not to go to the private island. The tender reservation schedule just wasn't worth the hassle. We heard there wasn't much shade, the food wasn't very good and the beach was crowded. Glad we skipped it. Next time, we will be more selective to not book cruises with more than one tender. Gym- The gym had plenty of equipment and machines. However, there were no towels the first few days, which was annoying. Also, no attendants there. Maid- She was great, pleasant, smiling and very friendly! We tipped her extra! All together, we like Norwegian, but this trip just seemed like less service and less for our money. Maybe that's what you get with the bigger ships? We still had fun and made the best of it. It just wan't for us. So, we won't be cruising on the Epic again. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
Ship looked great from the outside a little unusual but we were excited to go, we had prioritie boarding and could not find any direction to use this perk, the lines were enormous we finally got on board and waited a while to get to our ... Read More
Ship looked great from the outside a little unusual but we were excited to go, we had prioritie boarding and could not find any direction to use this perk, the lines were enormous we finally got on board and waited a while to get to our cabin..here was a surprise a bathroom that wasn’t a bathroom! Neither my wife or I appreciated the European style of the room with the deconstructed bathroom and lame curtain dividing the bedroom from the toilet facilities. And for that reason alone we will be much more selective of the cabin layout, I certainly will not book on the Epic again, the Shows were fantastic. Entertaining,funny and worthy of Broadway... dining was its usual wonderful experience food taste and presentation were wonderful. The ports were also enjoyable I was surprised with Grand Cayman very nice! Been to Nassau enough not to get off the ship but my wife and her friend did go ashore. The private isle Great stirrup Cay was great. The weather was a little cool this time of year so if we cruise in the winter again it will be to ports a bit further south disembarkation was efficient and speedy it seems they were more anxious to get us off the ship than to allow us on Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We really enjoy NCL for its food service and shows, but this ship has squashed our positive feelings, let me explain. The ship holds 4000 plus passengers, mostly heavy drinkers and casino addicts on this cruise, but that was not the ... Read More
We really enjoy NCL for its food service and shows, but this ship has squashed our positive feelings, let me explain. The ship holds 4000 plus passengers, mostly heavy drinkers and casino addicts on this cruise, but that was not the problem. The design of the ship is not passenger friendly. Firstly the balcony cabins are small, with a huge uncomfortable to sit on sofa bed occupying much of the space in addition to the beds in this cramped space. The bathroom is another issue. On one side of the door to the cabin is a phone booth size shower stall, and the toilet is on the other side in a similar stall. The tiny sink is located about 6 feet away next to the closet in the cabin- and I mean tiny. More importantly there is not enough seating in the show room, or in the atrium area where many activity are held. These are simply nice chairs but there are not enough of them. Activities there attract a lot of guests, most of whom must stand. The cavern club where great music takes place holds less than 100 people- again very few chairs. The comedy club fails in the same way. We were also disgusted by their "dueling Pianos" that for one show featured two improvising drunks begging for drinks or tips, or in the second show a screetching girl player and the worse drunk.Crowded, but not for long. There was a lack of band music to dance to, and the large Bliss lounge was underused, mostly saved for drunken karaoke singers. If you do not buy the drink package be prepared to pay 9 dollars for a beer, and 12 for a mixed drink. They will not allow you to bring on board a bottle of wine, or bottled water- 3bucks to buy it there. This ship is a real negative for NCL, so avoid it. I have been on 30 plus cruises- I know a dog when I see it. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We are a group of 8 that have done 15 or more ocean cruises and 7 or 8 European riverboats. This was our 4th time on NCLand our last. It started even before we set sail trying to book speciality restaurants. We were all linked together and ... Read More
We are a group of 8 that have done 15 or more ocean cruises and 7 or 8 European riverboats. This was our 4th time on NCLand our last. It started even before we set sail trying to book speciality restaurants. We were all linked together and we all had the speciality restaurant package. I had everyone’s booking # and tried to make reservations for the 8 of us. The first time I called, I was told each couple would need to call. Getting nowhere quickly, I decided to try again in an hour and hopefully would get a better agents. No luck but the 3rd Time was a charm. I actually got a rep. that was able to book the 8 of us at 1 table in 3 different restaurants. When we got to our rooms, 1 of the couples opened their cabin door to find someone sleeping on their bed. Apparently the cabin attendant had left the door open after cleaning for all the new passenger and some new passenger decided to take a nap in the wrong room. The cabin attendant was very good about it and replaced everything on the bed and recleanedthe room. The 1st night the 8 of us went to Taste, one of the main dining rooms. It was about 6;30pm when we arrived and were rushed from the moment we sat down. We never went back to the Taste Restaurant, the remaining dinners were in The Manhattan Restaurant or the speciality restaurants. I must say that The Manhattan and the speciality restaurants were very good. The service and food was what you would expect. 6 of the 8 of us are Silver Lattitudes members on NCL and were told when we boarded the ship that all the discounts we were entitled to would automatically be deducted at time of purchase. Not so, when we booked shore excursions we were entitled to a 10% discount but after looking at our account, I went to customer service and they corrected it. One of our couples were told by customer service that they need to go to the shore excursion desk for the refund. It appeared as if you asked 3 different reps. NCL you would get 3 different answers. All 8 of us also had the so called Ultimate Beverage Package which covered drinks up to $15 each. We found out quickly that it wasn’t so Ultimate in that it didn’t cover speciality coffee such as Cappuccino, nor did it cover sodas or even a 16 oz bottle of water. $3;90 for a small bottle of water. Really good at nickel diming. The term ‘miny suite’ sound good but actually the rooms are the same as the regular rooms. These have to be one of the worst designs I have ever seen. The room is no wider than 8 feet and the vanity and sink are in the sleeping section right next to the bed. The toilet and shower are in 2 separate areas. There is a curtain to close off the toilet and shower area, but not the sink. Probably would be OK if both people in the room get up and go to sleep at the same time. I’m an early riser, and my wife likes to sleep in a bit. The design of the ship also was not up to expectations. Having been on numerous other cruise lines, we were always able to find a nice quiet bar for cocktails; such as a piano bar or lounge. Nothing like that is on the Epic. The bars are all in the middle of everything else and very noisy. Another issue with the bars is you could only get certain drinks at certain bars. Frozen drinks like pina colada’s were only available at certain bars. If you wanted a mojito, a pina colada and regular vodka and soda or similar, you actually had to go to 3 different bars. Stupid. On the day we were to arrive in Georgetown, Cayman Island the ship instead tendered in a different area. We were all told that the excursions would still start in Georgetown and buses were available for transportation back and forth. When we got off the tenders there were buses but at $5 pp each way. Refer again to the nickel diming mentioned above. The next day I went to customer service and advised that even Carnival Lines had free transports when we couldn’t get to where the ship was supposed to dock. On the positive side; for the most part, the service in the bars and restaurants was very good as well as the food. The shows were outstanding. We saw the dueling pianos, Circle of Dreams, Pricisilla -queen of the desert and Burn the floor. All were excellent. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
We are not new to cruising, having sailed on Disney 1 time, and Royal Caribbean 4 times. We have taken 2 other cruises on Norwegian, Getaway and Sky, in the past year and a half and really enjoyed them. This ship was totally different and ... Read More
We are not new to cruising, having sailed on Disney 1 time, and Royal Caribbean 4 times. We have taken 2 other cruises on Norwegian, Getaway and Sky, in the past year and a half and really enjoyed them. This ship was totally different and a disappointment. The ship is laid out poorly. IConcierge menu listed filet and lobster at Wasabi, however, when we got to the restaurant, we were told that the new ships chef had done away with lobster. The iConcierge is not up to date with what is on board, nor does it tell you what time various venues open. I was told that I had to wear long pants to dine in LeBistro, however a man was seated wearing flip flops. I was also told that I had to wear long pants in the Manhattan Room, however, my wife and 20 year old daughter were admitted with shorts and flip flops. There is no waterfront on this ship, which we liked on the other two Norwegian ships that we have been on. There were not as many outdoor bars as on their other ships. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
We chose this cruise for the price and the itinerary. We had not been to Great Stirrup Cay or Ochos Rios before. Due to weather, the Epic would not allow their tender boats to go ashore at Great Stirrup Cay and the weather sent us and a ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the price and the itinerary. We had not been to Great Stirrup Cay or Ochos Rios before. Due to weather, the Epic would not allow their tender boats to go ashore at Great Stirrup Cay and the weather sent us and a Carnival ship to the the opposite side of Cayman Islands. We spent the Cayman Island day playing on the slides while the kids on board were on shore and we LOVED Playa Mia Resort in Cozumel. This was our fourth NCL cruise (we’ve cruised 9 times) and this was not our favourite ship. The crew was amazing and we hear the shows were great. The food is always good! We just do not like the layout of the ship. We felt there weren’t enough windows to the outside in the main meeting areas like Maltings and the Atrium. There was also no observation lounge which is always a great place to sit in inclement weather (which we had 3 days of on this cruise). Also, I am (the wife) 5’ 9” and unless you put your head up against the headboard, your feet hang over the end of the bed in the cabin (very weird) and you may not like that the toilet and shower are across from each other and you have a curtain to pull across separating that area from the rest of the cabin (especially if you are travelling with family or friends that your not comfortable “sharing” that type of layout with! We are doing the NCL Bliss for the Panama Canal in May for 5 nights so are hoping we like this one; I am sure we will. We did the Gem out of San Juan, a 12 day Mediterranean cruise on the NCL Spirit and a 14 day South America cruise on the NCL Sun. Loved all of those ships! We bought 4 Cruise Next certificates on this cruise. Used the last 3 we bought in just a year and a half and they give you four years to use them. Overall, we had a good time, met lots of Cruise Critic and FB Group friends and are easy to please for the most part. By the way, this site would not allow me to post my review without choosing activities my children participated in and we did not bring any children. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
Entertainment, activities. It's called Freestyling cruising but you must make reservations for all entertainment and dinners. If you did not know this, then you probably could not be accommodated. We booked the Burn the Floor, Cirque ... Read More
Entertainment, activities. It's called Freestyling cruising but you must make reservations for all entertainment and dinners. If you did not know this, then you probably could not be accommodated. We booked the Burn the Floor, Cirque and Priscilla and all 3 were amazing. We could not get into dining rooms before 9pm most nights. Main dining rooms were "ok", buffet's were "ok" and typically you can use steam room and sauna in the exercise areas but on the Epic the only option was to pay for the spa pass to access these areas. The staff were tired and there were too few. We had to wait most of the time to get a drink. There weren't enough bars and the unlimited drink package at 89 per day, with each cabin member having to sign up was way to expensive. I am glad I went on Epic but will not go again. However the mini suite was amazing!! Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
Compared to other cruises we have been, the food in the restaurant was not that great. The food in the buffet was good. Pools were small and closed earlier at night than other cruises. At least this one had 3 water slides which were great. ... Read More
Compared to other cruises we have been, the food in the restaurant was not that great. The food in the buffet was good. Pools were small and closed earlier at night than other cruises. At least this one had 3 water slides which were great. The adult section pool was way to small and closed at 8 pm, too early. We were trying to find Latin music (salsa or merengue) around the cruise but there was none. So not that great around having a nice night of dancing after dinner, if that is something you want on a cruise getaway; specially on the Caribbean where there is a lot of Latin music. Shows were great, we liked the idea of reserving at first your seat, makes waiting on lines something about the past. On our room, about the towel animals, we only got 3 animals towels on a 7-day cruise. We expected to see 7 animal towels like other cruises experience provide. Overall, this cruise line is average. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
We booked the Epic because it was going to the Virgin Islands...but itinerary changed due to hurricane...new ports were fine, but this ship was not what I had hopped for!! First the good things.....It was very well kept, and every area was ... Read More
We booked the Epic because it was going to the Virgin Islands...but itinerary changed due to hurricane...new ports were fine, but this ship was not what I had hopped for!! First the good things.....It was very well kept, and every area was beautiful...drinks were great and fairly easy to get waited on even though it was a huge ship...entertainment was pretty good...our cabins were kept nice...buffet food was very good! Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. Now the bad...The rooms are terrible!! So narrow you cant fit two people between the bed and counter..I have never been in my husbands was so much...lol....The bathroom area is split into toilet/shower/sink...and no privacy....glass doors and a curtain!! What a pain in the rear!! We all had issues with the bed, very small and all of our feet hung off the end of the bed and the bed was hard as rock as the box spring was a metal frame. The bed also moved all around (mattresses). Room service was always an hour or so late and always cold!! Which brings us to the food in the main dinning rooms...food and service was the absolute worst I have ever had!!! 2 hours or more for a terrible salad and a deep fried YUCK!!! We brought 24 people on this ship, and our biggest joke was the food!!! Nothing special and never cooked how you would order it!! After our first meal on board one of our people ended up with food poisoning throwing up all night long! This ship is just to big for the crew to cater to you like they should...It was just terrible and after 25 cruises this it the first time I am complaining.....Glad to be home where we had the best dinner in over a week!! LOL. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
We felt the ship was not well organized and activities were average. The Cirque Dreams show was above average but the Burn the Floor and Priscilla Queen of the Desert were sub par and average respectively. The Ship State Room ... Read More
We felt the ship was not well organized and activities were average. The Cirque Dreams show was above average but the Burn the Floor and Priscilla Queen of the Desert were sub par and average respectively. The Ship State Room Steward as always are very good and try to treat you like royalty. I just wish he had informed us that of the storage spaces and their locations were in the room. My wife and I didn't realize that the back of the couch opens up until the 2nd day of the cruise and the that their were drawers that pull out from under the couch until the 6th day of the cruise On a scale of one to ten i would give it a 3 - 4 for the cruise. Simple instructions about this and the color coding of the rooms with the port and starboard side of the ship. Even numbered room numbers were color orange and represented the Port side of the ship. The hallways and elevator coloring was orange to match this. This is something I figured out day one and told many people for the first 3 days none of which new and said it would be so much nicer to have know this to start. Tom & Angela - NCL Cruise Fun. (but not so much this time) Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
I chose this cruise for the ports of call not realizing it was such an enormous ship. There was never any problem finding a lounge chair on deck. That was a problem on all the other large ships I have cruised on. The theater and comedy ... Read More
I chose this cruise for the ports of call not realizing it was such an enormous ship. There was never any problem finding a lounge chair on deck. That was a problem on all the other large ships I have cruised on. The theater and comedy club are too small to accommodate all the extra passengers so they replay the same shows day after day. There ends up being half the number of comedy/production shows of your average cruise. This was by far the most disappointing part of the Epic and would prevent me from ever cruising on this ship again.They also require reservations for the shows which is easy to do from the TV in your cabin. O'Sheehan's is a sports bar with a bowling ally on one side and the atrium on the other. It is hard to enjoy events in the atrium with screaming sports fans in the bar. Can we get a little coordination here? The water slides and rock wall were my favorite part of the ship. No slow crawl down this water slide, they actually made one for a cruise ship that works! Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Our first cruise with NCL and we went on the EPIC. Got off to a rocky start due to some immigration issues on the incoming cruise from Spain we were delayed 2 hours in the hot sun @ Port Canaveral. Lots of Seniors standing in hot sun with ... Read More
Our first cruise with NCL and we went on the EPIC. Got off to a rocky start due to some immigration issues on the incoming cruise from Spain we were delayed 2 hours in the hot sun @ Port Canaveral. Lots of Seniors standing in hot sun with out water or any place to sit. We went to the Taste dinning room on the first night and the staff was rude. I had dehydrated due to standing out side and was really thirsty. The waiter came over after about 10 minutes and didn't introduce himself. We were brought water which I drank down and asked for more didn't get any more every time I asked for water I was told OK but didn't get it. I finally got up and got some myself. Some waiter was wandering by he offered to get us some drinks from bar but told us to ask our waiter for water! He came by 3 times with the same answer. When they brought our dinner I prime rib which was good I asked for cream horseradish did get till we were ready for dessert. They were not that busy just poor service. we enjoyed the chinese food ate their 2 times. Their was no water by the pool either you had to get up and go to the Garden Cafe to get a drink. I brought my yeti mug so I went their and filled it up the Drink people will not get you water. I didn't like the Shower and bathroom being glassed in didn't have much privacy. Thought the Rooms were Small you couldn't pass someone standing with out one person sitting on bed. Balcony was nice big and bed was good but short my feet hung over. The rest of the food was good Buffet was not food was like hospital food. Shows were excellent all shows we saw including the comedy show @ 9 which was funny without being nasty. So all in all it just ok wouldn't go on NCL again all they are interested in selling drinks Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
The ship is just too large and the buffet dining room can not adequately manage the crowds for breakfast.food line ups were long and finding a table to,sit at was quite a process.often walked around for 10-15 min before finding seating. ... Read More
The ship is just too large and the buffet dining room can not adequately manage the crowds for breakfast.food line ups were long and finding a table to,sit at was quite a process.often walked around for 10-15 min before finding seating. Food fare was average.The 2 main dining rooms were well decoretade and menu selection was fair The staff t the Taste dining room seemed better informed of the menu than those in the manhattan room. Vessel obviously caters to passengers under 50 with families .A number of older guests I spoke to were disappointed in the overall experience. The outdoor jogging track was being redone and could not be used.the open spaces on deck have been reduced in order to accommodate the larger nu bed of passengers bars were often crowded dining room staff were run of the feet trying to clear tables so no service to speak off staff not very friendly CBin staff were very good and cleaned well and restocked amenities They had no formal dining nights and this surprised many older long time cruisers Also evening entertainment was geared towards younger folk and in some instances additional fees were charged. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
We were 2 families totaling 12 people in our group. The main thing NCL did well is Embarkation/Disembarkation. Quick and efficient and received luggage quicker than any other cruise line we've been on. Ship and amenities were ... Read More
We were 2 families totaling 12 people in our group. The main thing NCL did well is Embarkation/Disembarkation. Quick and efficient and received luggage quicker than any other cruise line we've been on. Ship and amenities were well laid out and never lost my sense of direction. WiFi/internet was flakey. If we didn't want to be disconnected we had to use in the late hours. The NCL app was for the most part useless since the messages didn't always it to the recipient. This was $10 USD per user. Food was just ok nothing over the top. Dinning rooms with open seating was not for us when you have large group. Usually they sat everyone together but it was like pulling teeth. My wife arranged all the shore excursions in advance with 3rd party, not NCL. We booked one shore excursion which was a bus to the heart of Marseille only to find out there was free service from the docks. Communication with the guests was minimal. Entertainment was not what we experienced on any other ship. Not enough shows/plays and some were at an extra cost. Guest services did not have authority to make changes when there was a problem, we were told we'd have to contact head office in Miami. The adult beverage package did not include specialty coffee's or Cappuccino. The main pool deck area had 6 hot tubs of which 3 were closed for maintenance. None of them were warm enough to call them hot tubs. The Cabins (Balcony) were tight and no privacy when using the Lav or shower. We would use NCL again but will review the ship and reviews a little closer and providing the price was right. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
We liked the itinerary, and ship looked very good. Arriving as we did midweek into Rome was a big mistake, Only about 450 people get on at this point with only a few hundred arriving into the Airport that day. Norwegian do not want to ... Read More
We liked the itinerary, and ship looked very good. Arriving as we did midweek into Rome was a big mistake, Only about 450 people get on at this point with only a few hundred arriving into the Airport that day. Norwegian do not want to arrange transport for every flight so they made us wait 3 hours until they had enough passengers to fill a coach. Once on board you really are a 2nd class passenger as everybody else got on 3 days earlier in Barcelona and had the welcome aboard parties etc and have booked up the weeks events already. Ok well when they all get off at least you will have the jump on all the new passengers so you can book all the entertainment then, Wrong ! they shut down the booking system until midday by then you are ashore and most of the new passengers have arrived and making their reservations. On the day of leaving for most "Barcelona" the ship reverberates to constant announcements for disembarkation times. However when its time for the Rome passengers to leave on the Wednesday their are no announements just a letter telling you to be off the Ship by 6.30 or you will have to find your own transport. We were then left at Rome Airport 5hrs prior to our flight leaving, some people had a longer wait. The entertainment on board was very good, We managed to book a Soul show one night in headliners which was sold out, but once the show started the doors were unlocked for safety reasons and at least 60 more people came in and just stood in front of those who had booked blocking our view. Food is average, although the restaurants with cover charge were much better, especially Cagneys which was excellent, made even better by our waiter Warner who it was a real pleasure to meet. Staff on board are generally very friendly (Govind in headliners, brilliant barman), however as a general rule the female bar staff could be very Rude and miserable which was a shame. The big down side for me on-board was the smoking the whole casino deck which also has the main entertainment areas around it was horrible to walk through as was the area on deck 15 as you walk to the garden restaurant you are forced to walk through smoke, this area could be moved up to the quarter deck next to it. Our cabin (13285) was nice with plenty of storage but the large balcony was wasted as the whole right side view was blocked by a large machine for cleaning the ship bolted down beside it, blocking entire view from that side. Massive shame when in port and you cant see or take pictures. All in all a nice cruise but nothing special, would go on Epic again if the Itinerary was what I wanted but otherwise probably not. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
My husband and I were celebrating our anniversary along with another couple celebrating their honeymoon. We have wanted to do a Mediterranean cruise for some time. We selected NCL because the itinerary closely matched where we wanted to ... Read More
My husband and I were celebrating our anniversary along with another couple celebrating their honeymoon. We have wanted to do a Mediterranean cruise for some time. We selected NCL because the itinerary closely matched where we wanted to go. They gave us a great deal with free onboard dining at specialty restaurants and free taxes and port charges plus a free all inclusive beverage package. The ship was big and well layed out. You may want to reserve a balcony on the 10th and higher floors because the lifeboats jut out and I was on deck 8 and it blocked most of my views of the ocean. The staff were adequate but not legendary. The bar tenders at the pool were some of the most rude employees on a cruise I have ever encountered. They acted like it was an imposition to serve us. The dining and cabin staff were nice but no one person stood out to make this cruise special for us. I am not sure I enjoyed the concept of Freestyle cruising because they seem to nickel and dime you for everything. You had to pay for bottled water, you had to pay for some shows. There was a host of things that had an extra charge attached to it that it almost made it aggravating. I think in future I will spend a little more money and go with a cruise line that offered a little more personal service touches. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Norwegian Epic Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 3.7
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 5.0 4.0
Public Rooms 4.0 3.8
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 5.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 4.0 3.8
Value For Money 4.0 3.5
Rates 4.0 3.7

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