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Sail Date: October 2018
This was our second Norwegian cruise and our first "cold-water" cruise. It was also our first experience cruising in a suite. To start, as others have pointed out, the ship was wonderfully refurbished although the layout ... Read More
This was our second Norwegian cruise and our first "cold-water" cruise. It was also our first experience cruising in a suite. To start, as others have pointed out, the ship was wonderfully refurbished although the layout remains quirky. That said, by day 2 it was easy to figure out where everything was and the best way to get their. Next the staff, start to finish, outstanding. El, Nathaniel, Layla at Gatsby's simply made our cruise with their tremendous service and warm greetings. Also, the guitar player, Rob Ondras as a consumate performer who had a wide range of songs. We ate at all of the specialty restaurants and had good to great food. We ate at two of the main dining rooms, Aqua and Venetian and enjoyed both meals. Venetian is very large so we preferred Aqua for a more intimate experience. Now for the "suite-life". This completely changes the dynamics of cruising. We were in cabin 12030 what included a balcony and floor to ceiling windows. We had a couch and two chairs so if we wanted to read, relax, and watch the water go by, we had a great view at all times. Next our concierge, Roel, was great. At check-in, he whisked us onto the ship and brought us to Cagney's for lunch. As the Dawn does not have a Haven, suite passengers have Cagney's or Moderno's for lunch and breakfast. These amenities and priority boarding and disembarking, plus the little treats left every night, makes for an elevated experience. Finally , we enjoyed each port and each port was unique. Quebec is a charming, old world city with plenty to see and do. Sydney was a quite little stop with a great Irish pub and a charming local tour. Halifax has Peggy's Cover which is not to be missed, and Bar Harbour included a great local lunch and then a gentle hike around Acadia National Park. In summary, bundle up, get in the spirit, and you will love this ship and ports. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
This was our 10th cruise overall, 6th on NCL. We had strayed from NCL recently just to make sure that it really was the best option for us, and we are convinced! We'll be staying with NCL from now on. It was like being back home! ... Read More
This was our 10th cruise overall, 6th on NCL. We had strayed from NCL recently just to make sure that it really was the best option for us, and we are convinced! We'll be staying with NCL from now on. It was like being back home! Embarkation: SUPER smooth and easy. We had a 12-12:30 check-in in Boston. We got there at 11:50 after returning a rental car at Enterprise in the Westin (walking distance to the port, though not for everyone). We were checked in and aboard the ship at 12:11. It would have been nice to have the gym open, but we had to wait until after the Muster Drill so we just toured the ship and ate. Our rooms were ready before 2, which is earlier than we're used to so that was a bonus. Bar Harbor: Beautiful port, but it poured the whole time we were on our Lulu Lobster excursion. Still highly recommend Lulu and they made it an enjoyable trip despite the crappy weather. Halifax: We had went to Peggy's Cove 4 years ago so opted for Mahone Bay and Lunenburg this time with Halifax Taxi Tours (which we've used before). Nothing wrong with the tour company, but we should have did something else as we weren't impressed with the locale. The colors were beautiful, though! The downtown port area is very nice and everything was open. Sydney: Amazing craft area right in front of where we docked. You really need to book something in this port and we did the Bras D'Or Lakes and Baddeck Tour with Blue Thistle and highly recommend it. Sean was awesome! Somewhat disappointing was that a lot of the Mom and Pop places were already closed for the season. Sean said that the town of Sydney isn't 100% committed to cruisers yet so they close early, but they'll get there. PEI: Unfortunately, PEI closed their port due to ROUGH weather. NCL made the most of it and revised the itinerary for the day, but there's only so much you can do at the last minute. The only bad thing was that the crew member handing out tender tickets had no idea that we weren't stopping and mass confusion was about to happen. They went the extra mile, IMO, and made sure that everyone was as comfortable as possible with 16' waves and 70mph winds. Our excursion with Target Tours was refunded immediately without me even having to contact them. Saguenay: AMAZING welcome getting off the boat! Homemade blueberry pie, huge welcoming committee, absolutely one of the best welcomes we ever experienced. We toured the area with Saguenay Guided Tours and recommend them. They supplied lots of tasty treats, too. Debarkation: Easy peasy EXCEPT getting a taxi to take us to the Hilton to get a car. No fault of NCL, just poor planning from the port. We had to wait for over an hour and we were one of the first 200 people off the ship. Overall, the food was much improved vs other NCL cruises. We had the 3-meal dining package - Moderno 2x and Los Lobos 1x. All were excellent. Daniel in Moderno is awesome and kept the pineapple coming! Our room was as we expected, small, but clean and comfortable. Our room steward was like a ghost....he did an awesome job and was in and out quickly so we hardly ever saw him (but could get ahold of him if we needed to). They gym was adequate, though 2 of the 3 recumbent bikes were Out of Order. Everyone on the ship was friendly and helpful. We bought 4 more CruiseNext deposits and opened up a credit card for even more OB credit. We also came out ahead in the casino by playing slots so that was a bonus. The Elements show was OUTSTANDING, best we've ever saw. Julie Barr, the comedian, was funny and personable. The magician was also very good. Fall colors were great, as long as you got away from the water. Don't expect beautiful colors from the ship, which is why you take excursions. NCL did not dissapoint us and we'll be sailing again in March! The line may not be what everyone wants, but it certainly dots every i and crosses every t for us. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
We have sailed with Norwegian seven times before this cruise to New England and Canada. We have done this cruise from New York but did not get to experience Prince Edward Island. Sadly we didn't get there this time either. Weather ... Read More
We have sailed with Norwegian seven times before this cruise to New England and Canada. We have done this cruise from New York but did not get to experience Prince Edward Island. Sadly we didn't get there this time either. Weather cancelled our successfully entry into this port. Thankfully, the crew was very skillful in navigating through the storm with its 85 mph winds and 20 foot seas. The colors we were able to see showed us God's palette of many hues and shades. It was simply marvelous. From the ship's captain, to his crew, to all those who served us, the experience couldn't have been better. Who knew when we sailed from Boston a storm was brewing in the St. Lawrence Seaway. All in all the three of us had a wonderful time. We even found out how ware tight the bathrooms are when you are trying to take a shower in 20-foot seas. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
We chose the cruise hoping to see fall foliage in New England and Quebec. While the foliage was nice, the highlights of the trip involved the fall weather and the "stern and rockbound coast". Two of the ports of call were Halifax ... Read More
We chose the cruise hoping to see fall foliage in New England and Quebec. While the foliage was nice, the highlights of the trip involved the fall weather and the "stern and rockbound coast". Two of the ports of call were Halifax and Sydney, NS, the starting points for the WWI and WWII convoys to Europe. Both waterfronts have memorials commemorating the Battle of the North Atlantic. The next two days were spent working northward to the Gulf of St. Lawrence in a full gale (61 mph sustained winds, 101 mph highest gust, 21 ft seas). The ship and crew handled the situation wonderfully, the view of the sea was spectacular, and we ended up with a much deeper appreciation for those mariners, both naval and merchant, who fought the Battle of the Atlantic. That wasn't in our plans, but the cruise was much more memorable because of the storm. The Saguenay fiord is also drop dead gorgeous! We arrived in a snowstorm which just emphasized the sheer scale of the water, cliffs, and mountains. This whole experience was unique and different from what it would have been in the summer time. Captain Borg and his crew are an amazing team. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
We had a tough year, so we were mainly there to rest, recharge (we all slept 12 hours the first night) and see the leaves change. it was so nice being greeted by roal who had been our concierge before on another ship. our butler had been ... Read More
We had a tough year, so we were mainly there to rest, recharge (we all slept 12 hours the first night) and see the leaves change. it was so nice being greeted by roal who had been our concierge before on another ship. our butler had been cabin-mates with our past butler. the cruise director always made a point to stop and chat with us. our cabin (we stayed in the emerald penthouse) was beautiful; the woodwork in it was gorgeous. i had my first pedicure ever, and a relaxing swedish massage and facial (never had one of those before either). everything could not have been nicer. i think the thing i liked the best was all of the little things; there were almost too many to list. my only regret was that i had overeaten a lot of comfort food one afternoon, so when we later went to cagney's there was no room for even the tiniest bit of food. i also wish that we had caught more shows, but the three that we did catch were awesome. the singers and dancers rocked! Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
We have previously been a little disappointed with NCL, but this cruise impressed us greatly. Service was outstanding, especially housekeeping and waiters, and everyone was always so happy and friendly! Relaxed atmosphere of New England ... Read More
We have previously been a little disappointed with NCL, but this cruise impressed us greatly. Service was outstanding, especially housekeeping and waiters, and everyone was always so happy and friendly! Relaxed atmosphere of New England and Canada helped to melt stress. The many activities seemed to keep the passengers busy and happy, we chose more to walk on the 8th floor boardwalk, and found many quiet places to sit and unwind. We booked our own excursions and were very happy. People who booked through the ship were somewhat disappointed. The food on board was the best we ever tasted (4 cruises experience, all very good!). We mostly ate in Taste, but I know the same chefs prepare the food for the entire ship. We heard a couple going on shore for an excursion discussing how excited they were to get a steak on shore, and we couldn't stop laughing, knowing that the food onboard could compete with anything Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
We have traveled to warmer weather on cruise and wanted to try something different--this was perfect. We arrived at the pier at 10:15am and on ship 11:45am. Had an inside cabin which we love for afternoon naps, this was ready at 1:30pm. ... Read More
We have traveled to warmer weather on cruise and wanted to try something different--this was perfect. We arrived at the pier at 10:15am and on ship 11:45am. Had an inside cabin which we love for afternoon naps, this was ready at 1:30pm. Ate at Moderno, Cagney's, Le Bistro and Teppyaniki--all were great. Love O'Sheehan's- always available and tasty. Saw After Midnight (OK), Brat Pack (great), Choir of Man (excellent) and game shows--lots of fun and laughter. Service was great-- everyone friendly and happy to help. In Portland we did a schooner tour which we booked privately and it was a beautiful day. Bar Harbor we did Oli's trolleys and were able to see beautiful sights on 2.5 hour tour. Canada was chilly and rain so we didn't do much. We participated in easy walk off and once the announcement was called we were out of terminal in less than 20 minutes and home by 11:10am. Love NCL Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
This was a great trip. Had a great time both onboard, and at the ports. There was always something to do, and the cruise ship staff was great. Ate at the buffet mostly, always quality food with enough options to always be able to try ... Read More
This was a great trip. Had a great time both onboard, and at the ports. There was always something to do, and the cruise ship staff was great. Ate at the buffet mostly, always quality food with enough options to always be able to try something different. The included restaurants were also very good. I've read lots of complaints about portion sizes being to small at the complimentary restaurants. PRO TIP: Instead of complaining about it online, all you had to do was ask for more. 1 minor comment: Karaoke song selection could have been better. Not to say it was bad, but the last Norwegian cruise I went on had a far wider song selection, so I figured it would have been the same. Still had a great time though! A lot of the complaints for this ship seem to center on it being crowded. Well, that could have been easily anticipated before hand, and honestly, except for the first day before the staterooms were ready, I didn't even notice. Also, THERE ARE NO "HIDDEN" CHARGES. If people would read all of the things they agree to beforehand, they would know this. Instead, people go on a trip having not read information that was provided to them, and then act like their ignorance is someone elses fault. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose this cruise because it was Canada-New England, which we have done previously, with a few different itineraries on 3 various cruise lines, HAL, NCL and about 10 years ago, Costa. So we have seen many of these ports many times, ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was Canada-New England, which we have done previously, with a few different itineraries on 3 various cruise lines, HAL, NCL and about 10 years ago, Costa. So we have seen many of these ports many times, but we feel comfortable with all of them, and many are either walkable, or have great public transit such as NYC, Boston, Halifax and Quebec City. It is really easy for us for the short flight from Toronto to NYC ( Newark ). As well, taking the train from Quebec City is so convenient with the train station being such a short distance from the secondary wharf # 30, where we were docked. NCL did charge $ 15 for a shuttle into Old Quebec, but a Quebec City bus could bring you there much cheaper, you see much more, and the Bus Day Pass can be bought at the train station. We went to view the Montmorency Falls, with our Bus Pass, but the water flow was quite reduced from previous years due to the semi-drought this past summer. The food on the GEM was ok, but not as varied as HAL. We were on the East Coast, but there was no lobster served on board. Disappointing. Bar Harbor was being drenched, so the tenders were cancelled, but just as well. Walking around Bar Harbor would have required superb rain gear. Raincoats and umbrellas would have been useless.. Everybody likes/hates whatever type of entertainment which is presented. We enjoyed the comedian-juggler, the solo comedian and the superb dance crew including throwback music, like Chicago, which I love. The Iriish pub, Sheehans, was a got-to place for us for quiet and quick breakfast, although we did also enjoy being served at a lower pace in the MDR, meeting really interesting folks at the share-tables which we were offered. WE did have fish n' chips in Sheehans at one lunchtime, but that item should be improved. It was batter with a miniscule amount of fish. It's always your choice if you prefer to eat without any othe tablemates. But such loneliness...you really miss out on great conversations with folks that you have never met, and never will again. Life is a series of opportunities...don't pass them up. As with all of our cruises over the years, the room was always clean, the bed comfortable and the temperature/climate control efficient. We were in an inside cabin, but the architect who put in the bathroom had the wall too close to the toilet,particularly for someone over 6 ft tall, so I had to sit in a weird way to " accomplish" that task. We self-disembarked in Quebec City, since our train was leaving at 8:15am, and the train station was just a 15 minute walk from the ship. We did enjoy visiting the new library in Halifax with its roof-top coffee patio and a great view of the harbor and our ship. Great weather is never guaranteed, so no point in crabbing about the endless rain in Bar Harbor or the very wind day which we had in Quebec City. Such is life. When we took the Dawn about 6 years ago, we missed NYC, but we did get 2 days in Boston instead because of Hurricane Sandy. So again, these things do happen, and folks do get disappointed, but you can't blame the crew or NCL for those things. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
I just finished sailing this past week. I have never been on a ship that big, but found it enjoyable. Things I took and did not need (took from other suggestions since been a while cruising) No need to bring: extra outlet, have plenty of ... Read More
I just finished sailing this past week. I have never been on a ship that big, but found it enjoyable. Things I took and did not need (took from other suggestions since been a while cruising) No need to bring: extra outlet, have plenty of outlets and usb plug on each side of your bed, bungee ties for balcony door-the door sets and locks at any spot you want to open, does not "free swing" so no need. I took two water bottles, but never used them, personal preference. The bed was a bit firm for me can ask your room steward for a crate foam top and will put on your bed. Bring the magnet hooks, it will stick to your walls, great for hats, jackets, sweaters. Cagney's was awesome! Teppanyaki's which was very good. LaCucina was good. Garden cafe buffet was ok, but ate every night at either Taste, Savor and Manhattan which is sit down and asked for "Non-Share" quiet dining instead of rat race in cafe. Go see The Brat Pack!! Awesome! From the Breakfast club movie, great singing and play was very good. Choir men is good too! After-midnight was ok for me. Read Less
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