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216 Norwegian (NCL) Canary Islands Cruise Reviews

We were attracted to this cruise because of the stop in Morocco. But we were also interested in the Canary Islands, even though we had spent some time on one of them. We chose Norwegian because we like their FreeStyle approach. In the end, ... Read More
We were attracted to this cruise because of the stop in Morocco. But we were also interested in the Canary Islands, even though we had spent some time on one of them. We chose Norwegian because we like their FreeStyle approach. In the end, the only disappointing port was Morroco. We chose the Norwegian excursion, which took us to Imperial Rabat and then back to Casablanca to see the Great Mosque and free time. Rabat has some interesting sites and the Great Mosque in Casablanca is impressive, but to really see Morocco, I think a real tour, not a cruise, is the way go. We toured the islands and Madeira with private guides (we traveled with a couple and we "met" another couple on the Spirit message boards) and this was well worth it. Each island is unique and well worth the visit. The bottom line is that we enjoyed the cruise as a whole. The embarkation and debarkation were easy and quick. The shows were good for a "destination" cruise. Plenty of areas to relax and listen to music, dance, etc. Great music to dance to in the Galaxy in the evenings. No problems dining in the main dining rooms without reservations. We were balcony midship, which was perfect. If you choose this cruise, don't be put off by the shore excursion in Alicante to "Amazing Guadalest." If you can walk on cobblestone and you can walk up stairs, you can do it. And if you don't want to walk to the "top" (not far at all) go anyway to experience the views. I was disappointed that there were no lectures about the ports of call. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Barcelona to The Canaries and back. "Truth in Advertising" confession. I'm a big fan of NCL and also a fan of smaller ships. The Spirit and The Canaries itinerary were wonderful. Tho the itinerary had some weather ... Read More
Barcelona to The Canaries and back. "Truth in Advertising" confession. I'm a big fan of NCL and also a fan of smaller ships. The Spirit and The Canaries itinerary were wonderful. Tho the itinerary had some weather glitches, I am about to say that the Spirit is my favourite NCL ship so far (and it is my fifth one. Others include the Sun, the Star, the Jade, and the Epic.) With the exception of missing an O'Sheghan's, the Spirit met or exceeded every expectation. I had most recently sailed Transatlantic on the Epic (too big, too noisy) and was looking forward to a smaller ship and better experience. I was very happy with everything on the ship itself. The cruise directors were energised without being so over-the-top as they often can be. Both main dining rooms were equally attractive. As so many other reviewers have commented here and elsewhere, the crew is exceptional. The spa is a bit lacking compared to the other ships. It doesn't have the Thermal Spa membership option but does have steam and dry saunas gratis. And the fitness centre was never too busy. The forward facing Galaxy of the Stars is a great venue and the atrium is a wonderful place to hangout, with or without the musical offerings. I had an oceanview, deck 8 forward, and was surprised and very happy with the cabin size. I also got a look in an inside cabin and, unlike other ships I've been on, the inside cabin was the same size as the oceanview. One of the positives (and one of the reasons i like the Sun so much): The Spirit has a very large outdoor eating and casual area off Raffles, the buffet. The outdoor area is three decks high, aft-facing. A big, big plus on a sunny cruise. And Raffles straddles the whole ship with windows both port and starboard. Humorously, when compared to the Epic, what would have been halfway from bow to stern on the Epic was the whole length of the ship on the Spirit - or so it felt. And three banks of stairs and lifts/elevators. It isn't an exaggeration to say that, half the time, I had a lift all to myself. While the weather on this cruise was less than ideal, I liked the itinerary and the ship so much I am considering taking the same cruise again both for the ship experience and to see the two ports we missed from the original itinerary. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
NORWEGIAN SPIRIT 10-DAY SPAIN AND MOROCCO JANUARY 4 TO 14, 2018 We have taken over 30 cruises on various cruise lines, the majority of them with Norwegian Cruise Line. We choose NCL because we like their freestyle approach since ... Read More
NORWEGIAN SPIRIT 10-DAY SPAIN AND MOROCCO JANUARY 4 TO 14, 2018 We have taken over 30 cruises on various cruise lines, the majority of them with Norwegian Cruise Line. We choose NCL because we like their freestyle approach since it means we don’t have to carry suits and ties for formal evenings. It also means that we are free to dine at the time of our choice and we can have a table for two or share with others if we choose to do so. The other cruise lines offer similar, but cannot deliver as easily as NCL because a freestyle approach is difficult for them to manage as they prefer two fixed services where guests always have the same table and the same wait-staff. The ship Norwegian Spirit is the smallest and oldest ship in the NCL fleet. The ship was originally part of Star Cruises and operated under the name Star Leo. It was a gift from the then CEO of Star Cruises to his wife and served its early years on itineraries in Asia. This explains the decor. On boarding the ship, we saw life-size terra cotta warriors and gold dragons as well as oriental panels in black or gold with flower motifs. Until we learned its history, we thought Norwegian Spirit had been decorated in Asian fashion because it was scheduled to go to Asia. Not so, and in my opinion the ship should be dry-docked to have its decor and carpetting updated to something more modern and much more neutral. The stateroom We had a balcony stateroom (11630) with one of the smallest balconies I have ever seen on a ship. It was impossible to sit comfortably to watch the sea sail by. The chairs had to be placed to face each other, which meant turning your head to look out at the sea. This was not very comfortable. The room was smaller than we expected. It was decorated well enough. The bed was comfortable and we had a sofa. There was a table with one chair opposite the sofa. The table was held a tray containing a small coffee maker, 2 cups and a supply of coffee and tea, sugar and powder creamers. The table was too crowded by the tray to be used for writing or any other function. Instead, it became extra storage space for wallets, watches and coins. I suppose the original function of this furnitre was a make-up table. There was also one night table on which the phone, which took up most of the table space, was placed. A drawer and a shelf in the night table housed my book, tablet, and mobile phone. There was a shelf unit containing a mini-bar and another with a flat screen TV in a wall-unit type furniture. Between the two is where the ice bucket was placed, and the heat from the mini-bar melted most of the ice. The unit also contained 4 small drawers that did not hold much. We used them to store small items of clothing like socks and underwear. The closet had an adequate supply of hangers and had 5 shelves which were rather awkward to access. It had sliding doors which often became stuck and would not open or close. It was a challenging job to move them. I gave up and asked our stateroom attendant to fix it. The doors were held closed by magents, but in rough seas, teh doors simply slid open and closed while we tried to get clothes out. Our neighbours, who must have been partying all night, surely did not know to close the doors correctly because their closet doors slid back and forth all night. Quite annoying. The bathroom was a self-contained unit with separate shower unit and toilet unit on each side of the sink. Our stateroom attendant maade sure it was well-stocked with shower gel, hand soap and conditioning shampoo. The floors were non-slip yellow tile and the walls were tiled. It was nice, but dated. It could have used a modern touch. We had fresh towels every day. Dining We had several dining options, but we had most of our meals in Windows, one of the complimentary restaurants. On ports days, Windows was closed for lunch so we went to Raffles, the buffet restaurant. The food in each of these venues was well-prepared and tasty. There were always sufficient choices, even for a choosy eater like me. We have reached the Platinum Plus Latitudes Rewards level. This awarded us two complimentary dinners for two at the specialty restaurants with a main meal that cost up to $20US; if the main you choose if more expensive the upcharge is charged to your onboard account. The first ticket allowed us to dine at Le Bistro or Cagney’s and to have a bottle of wine with the meal. The second ticket permitted us to dine at La Trattoria or Moderno Churrascaria (but Moderno does not exist on the Spirit). We chose Le Bistro and La Trattoria. Everything we ordered at Le Bistro was excellent, and the service was top-notch. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same of La Trattoria. I ordered the penne appetizer. The pasta was overcooked, to the point of falling apart. The sauce was too salt, even though I had requested no salt through my special diet order. While the appetizer was too hot, the main was too cold. But the bread and the coffee were perfect! Service was adequate. We were quite surprised at the limitations on the specialty restaurants awarded to Platinum Plus members. On previous sailings with Norwegian, we had a wider choice of specialty restaurants. We could go to any of the restaurants for our meal and order any main on the menu, and any item with an extra charge was posted to our stateroom account. With each retaurant we had a bottle of wine from the complimentary selection. We found the change from this practice to be rather restrictive. I do not care for Cagney’s; it is a steakhouse. Moderno serves meat dishes mainly, and as I do not eat any red meats both of these venues are out if the question for me. Besides, my partner and I both like Le Bistro for the food and the atmosphere. You do not have to have a Latitudes status to try the specialtyrestaurants. The are open to all guests and willincur a charge per person that is charged to your onboard account. You can also reserve them through your MyNCL account or wait till you are on board to do so. You may purchase the Ultimate Dining Package (UDP) when you book your cruise. The UDP allows you to dine at a specific number of restaurants during the length of your cruise, and the number is determined by the length of your cruise. If you enjoy alcoholic beverage or sodas, you can also purchase the Ultimate Beverage Package (UBP) or the Ultimate Soda Package (USP). These packages allow to enjoy the drinks of your choice, served one at a time per person, at any venue where alcohol or sodas are served. We have never purchased either of these packages because we do not drink enough of either one to say itis a benefit. Those people we know who enjoy imbibing during vacation have told us it a real benefit for them. Since you cannot purchase alcohol on shore to bring onto the ship for your personal consumption, and now you can no longer bring sodas back on board, these packages seem to be the best way to enjoy your favourite drinks. NCL has even cracked down on passengers bringing back bottles of water from shore purchases. Not knowing the regulation about water (we knew about alcohol and sodas), we purchase bottles on shore. They were taken from us, even though we had drunk from them, and thrown into the trash. Instead, NCL wants you to purchase 1-liter bottles of water on board at a cost of about $4US per bottle. I absolutely refuse to pay this outrageous amount when I can buy a 2-liter bottle for less than 1 euro in some places. This is a wholely ridiculous practice. I understand about alcohol and soda, but water? It’s insane. Latitude Rewards When we first qualified for any Latitudes Rewards, one of the things we enjoyed was the free laundry service added to our level. It is a small thing, but it is important. Originally, we were told we could send laundry as often as we liked and that meant we could bring fewer clothes which translated into carrying a smaller suitcase. Now, we are permitted one bag per Platinum Plus member and only once during the cruise. This means carrying a few more clothes in a larger suitcase, and timing the wash so that it is done near the end of the cruise so that we have clean clothes to take home or for our stay in the city after disembarkation. Things have changed at NCL. It seems like NCL has cut back on its rewards programmes to loyal guests, and that makes the company appear cheap to me. Gone are the days when a box of Godiva chocolates containing 8 pieces was part of the rewards. That was cut to a box half the size, and now it has disappeared altogether. These were nice gestures from the company to welcome loyal guests back onboard another cruise, and it is sad that they have been stopped. We will consider NCL as an option for a future cruise, but they may not be the final choice. The staff are the main reason we return. They are wonderful, friendly and hard-working people. Other considerations, such as itinerary and costs, will go into the mix. And if we cannot have freestyle on another line, there is always the buffet for our meals. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We just got back from a 10 day cruise to the Canary Islands leaving from Barcelona. Check in was fast and effecient. Cabin 11126 was a balcony on deck 11 not a great location as the main buffet restaurant was directly above and at ... Read More
We just got back from a 10 day cruise to the Canary Islands leaving from Barcelona. Check in was fast and effecient. Cabin 11126 was a balcony on deck 11 not a great location as the main buffet restaurant was directly above and at 2am and 4am and 6am you could here noise from getting the buffet ready. Beds were comfortable bathroom was small and not much cabinet drawer space for your clothes. T.V. programs very limited and some night the channel dropped out. Dining was great liked the "The Garden" restaurant was it was more intimate and went at 5:30pm when they opened and service was always great. Food was good lots of variety on menu. It was not upscale food but delicious. First night they had prime rib which was great. Ask for a window seat and you usually get one. Ate serval times at Windows slow check in for table service slow same menu as the Garden. We went to Showgun Asian restaurant twice always got right in at 5:30pm food was good had the lemon pepper shrimp. Didn't really care for the dessert selection. We had severval breakfast and lunches at the main buffet Raffles lots of selection. I had the poached eggs for breakfast no line up. We ate outside which was nice and quiet. Some days had great selection of desserts baked apple and apple strudel. Entertainment was outstanding especially the magician show, arobats show and the new dance production elements. Didn't care for the three singers on two different nights one night it was opera and another a variety of songs. We went up to the Galaxy for the game shows which were good. Bands playing were good. Enjoyed all the ports except Casablana Morocco as there was too much pollution smog and lots of aggressive taxi drivers and merchants. Don't take the ship shuttle for $15 U.S to the city center as nothing really there but take a taxi from the port but be sure to get the price before you get it 40 to 50 euros for 2 hour tour. Lots of walking in all the ports as the ships are docked a long ways out from town 2.5km to end of pier. We enjoyed the size of the smaller ship about 2000 people. Enjoyed the glassed in sun room on deck 12 for sitting. Since it is an older ship lots of vibration from the engine which I didn't really enjoy. Embarkation was coloured coded and very effecient. Norwegian seems to be charging for a lot of extra activities on board 10 different ones one morning. Didn't take any of the ships shore excursions as they were all too expensive. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We have been wanting to cruise on the Epic since we were on the Jade in 2011 and watched the video presentation of this latest ship in the NCL fleet. Since then, we've looked at many reviews of the ship, and finally we found an ... Read More
We have been wanting to cruise on the Epic since we were on the Jade in 2011 and watched the video presentation of this latest ship in the NCL fleet. Since then, we've looked at many reviews of the ship, and finally we found an itinerary that suited us. We had a balcony room just forward of mid-ship on the starboard side (10075). It was the second balcony where the side of the ship flares out, so it was wider at one end than the other, and I would say slightly bigger than the rectangular balconies. We had initially been assigned a 'handicapped' room--which we did not ask for nor need. It may have been somewhat roomier than regular rooms, but there has been so much controversy over the shape and configuration of the Epic staterooms that we wanted to experience it ourselves. As we suspected, there was absolutely no reason for complaint about the room at all. We were on back to back cruises and had to change rooms for the second cruise (Room 12125) but they were essentially identical (we chose the configuration where the bed is by the balcony.) We do not understand all the negative comments about the bathrooms or anything else about the rooms. There was lots of storage for the two of us. Having the toilet separate from the shower is a big plus. The shower was much better size than those in the smaller ships, and had glass doors rather than a curtain that clings to you while you are showering! The only 'lack' in the room was power outlets. We always bring a power bar along so that solved that particular issue. However, the head of the bed was on the opposite side of the cabin from the outlet, which meant there was no way to have your phone or tablet by your bedside, charging overnight. There really should be an electric outlet on that side of the room or at least USB ports by each side of the bed. Ordinarily I also bring an extension cord, but for some reason didn't this time. That may have been a solution to that particular problem, but then might also have caused a tripping hazard! And the extension cord would have needed to be extra long too. As usual the NCL staff was excellent. We've sailed 8 of our 9 cruises on NCL and I don't think we have ever had a bad experience with their staff. We had a piece of luggage that did not make it to Barcelona with us, and was supposed to eventually get to us on the ship. Very long story short, we never saw our luggage until we got back home, but NCL has staff that continually follow up with this type of thing and they were very helpful and accommodating. They also gave us free laundry service which helped immensely. On the first of our two (back-to-back) cruises we had unlimited specialty dining (a booking perk--we did not purchase it) so we took advantage of it and ate at Cagney's (twice), Modernos (twice), La Cucina, Le Bistro and Cirque Spiegel. Each meal was very good and service excellent. Food and service in the main dining rooms was very good as well and we had breakfast lunch and dinner at those venues. We ate lunches several times at O'Sheehans and we also enjoyed our food there. We were a bit surprised at that, as we had eaten at O'Sheehans on the Jewel (2015) and its predecessor (Ocean Blue? something like that) on the Jade in 2011, and were not impressed by the quality of food there at all. So it was a nice place to grab a bite instead of going to the buffet (I don't like buffets very much!) That being said, we did eat at the buffet for some breakfasts and maybe one dinner. The food was varied and excellent. We have never felt the buffets deserve the negative reviews they sometimes receive. I just don't like going all over the place to find what I want, then finding a table and balancing drink and plate and by the time I get to the table my food is no longer hot. I prefer to be served! We also had the unlimited (ultimate?) beverage package. That sure is the way to go--no worries about a bar bill at the end. All drinks at all bars are not created equal! I found it surprising that the liquor brands were not consistent at each bar, and the same drink ordered at different bars could be quite different. So you need to try them all out and figure out where to go to get what you particularly want. Some bartenders were more generous with measuring the alcohol than others. We also found inconsistencies as to how the bartenders would handle the ordering when you have the beverage package. Some would not let you order a double, others would. Some made you show 2 key cards if you were ordering 2 drinks, others didn't. Since we were just 2 couples travelling together and all of us had the package, we were not trying to get away with anything. It was just a convenience to sometimes order a double, and if you are heading to your room for the evening, you should be able to order a couple of drinks each to take with you. We found that for the most part the system operated as it should and was very convenient and accommodating. I understand that on the first day they want to see a key card per drink, but they relaxed after that. Sometimes the bars were really busy and you had to wait awhile to be served, but that was not an issue. One could wish that there were more choices for wines by the glass, esp for white wine drinkers. We do have one complaint about NCL's ultimate beverage package and that is that it does not include all drinks--and by that I mean you still have to pay for fresh squeezed juices, bottled water and specialty coffees (expresso, latte, etc.) That just doesn't make sense to me when you are paying USD $80 a day per person!! Since we are from Canada, it was more like $110 a day per person. I don't think any day did we ever actually drink the number of drinks it would take to spend that amount of money, so when you pay that amount just for beverages, it should include everything. This is an example of the one major flaw of NCL: they do nickel and dime you and it is sort of irritating. However, we love freestyle cruising so we take the good with the bad. If NCL wants to improve, we suggest that would be a big plus to most people. Beverage packages with some of the other cruise lines include everything, some for a lower price. I think the ship had been refurbished some time in 2016 so there was nothing to complain about in the ship itself. Everything was in good repair and clean. We didn't get to all of the entertainment. The Cavern Club's 'house band' Siglo was just excellent and we saw them most nights. We did not go to see the main theatre show. It was Priscilla Queen of the Desert--and was the only choice for a main show to see. Our group thought it in very poor taste to present that show on a family cruise. Everyone can make their own entertainment choices, but presenting that particular message front and center to 4500 passengers is just not politic in my mind. Obviously many agree as I have read other reviewers with the same comments. Neutral family entertainment, please. I don't want someone's agenda forced on me. Burn the Floor was very entertaining. The one Epic Beatles show we went to at the Cavern Club was nothing spectacular. I think they had an alternate show in the main theatre which we may have enjoyed more, but we didn't get to it. We enjoyed the two or three shows we saw at the Headliners venue. We never sat in on Howl at the Moon--went by it one night and peeked in for a minute or two, but was disappointed in the quality of the singing we heard so didn't bother making an effort to go back another time. As far as activities during the day, we felt them somewhat lacking from other NCL trips. We didn't like the use of the atrium cafe and big screen as a main venue for trivia and other games as it is an area where everyone walks through. We have always enjoyed the quietness of an unused bar area (for example) during the day for things like origami, towel and napkin folding, trivia, language lessons, and so on. And hands on activities are better than just demonstrations. Our cruises were a 9 day Canary Islands and 7 day western Mediterranean, April 14-30, back-to-back, both departing from Barcelona. This was spring break in Europe. The ship was over-full because of many families travelling. The Epic seemed like a good ship for children and teens. And I'm sure the staff that look after these age groups were grateful to have something to do. However, we will make sure we don't travel at that time of year again. Just way too many people, and the kids took over much of the outdoor activities. We deliberately returned early to the ship on a port day in the Canary Islands so that we could hope to have a lounge chair and be able to try out the water slides. That was the only day we could do that. Because of the crowded pool deck, Spice H2O , the adult outdoor venue at the back of the ship, was also always full. We anticipated spending outdoor time here on the Epic but so did everyone else. So we never spent more than a lunch here (same day we did the water slides) and one drink one evening. If we were travelling with children (and yes we do have children and grandchildren!), we would have had a different view of things. But since we weren't, we prefer our cruises to have less children running around, so we will plan future sailings with that in mind. Usually, we travel the first two weeks of May and that seems to be a better time from that point of view. We also didn't appreciate children, and babies, being in bar/entertainment venues (like the Cavern Club and Headliners) in the evenings. We did the Ice Bar! That is a pretty 'cool' offering and worth the price of admission. They don't tell you this, but if you want to put your drink down on the counter, place it on one of the napkins there! Otherwise, the cup just slides right off the ice onto the floor.... For the number of passengers (4500+), the Epic did not seem to have enough room for everyone. All the space seemed confined. Other than the pool deck, and the poor excuse for a jogging track on deck 6 or 7 (you can only run back and forth a short length on that deck!!) there is no way to actually get outside. And the way the decks are configured, you can't walk all the way around the ship on one level. There is no large space with windows where you can go during the day to just chill and read or whatever. On smaller NCL ships, we spend a lot of quiet time during the day at the Spinnaker Lounge or the Observation Lounge. There was no venue like that on the Epic. Also, we had bad seas a couple of days and we missed a port (Malaga) and the outside decks were not open. So everyone was stuck inside and there was just nowhere to sit. We found a quiet area in the lounge outside Cagneys/Modernos and we played some cards there and one of our group laid on a couch. We were the only people there and there were other empty chairs and couches. A large family came in and decided their choice was to sit in the area where our friend was lying and they asked him to move. Two issues here: presumably the family couldn't find a place to spend time together elsewhere and felt compelled to ask someone to give up their space--which is the fault of the Epic designers; but, secondly, who does that?? I can't imagine asking someone to move so I could have their spot. I thought that was very rude, but we came across several instances of this type of behaviour and were quite flabbergasted at people's nerve. I digress. Continuing on with the space issues: There was no multi-level atrium--there were a couple of places that had 2 floors connected, but no grand open space. The atrium level had a 2 storey tv screen, that you could look down onto from O'Sheehans above, but the rest of that area was just one level in height and it seemed the ceiling was really low. We would agree with past reviews we've read that it seems like the Epic was built just to pack in as many people as it could. In doing so, they sacrificed personal space for everyone. If the ship hadn't been over-capacity (over 4500 passengers, instead of 4100) we may not have felt the pinch quite so badly. But we most likely aren't going to sail the Epic again to find out. The fitness center was huge! We thought we would use it, but we did so much walking on shore excursions, we didn't feel the need for more exercise, and besides, we were on vacation! We did get treated to use of the spa for our second cruise of 7 days. After dinner, we would go there and sit in the steam room for awhile, then go into the hydrotherapy pool, then into the hot tub, then relax on the heated loungers, looking out the aft of the ship. It was a beautiful way to wind down before bed. I had my best sleeps of my vacation those nights. Speaking of sleeping, the beds were good. Having the rounded corners at the foot of the bed took away some sleeping area--my husband is 6'2" and I'm 5'5", so he had to sleep a little on the diagonal. So if 2 very tall people were sleeping together the length of the bed might be an issue. But it was fine for us. I won't comment much on the ports. We had been to some on past cruises, and some were new to us. We chose the itinerary because of the ports, and I expect everyone to have their own take on that. That being said, if you have never taken a Mediterranean cruise or seen Italy, then our second cruise would be great for you as it hits all the high points: Barcelona, Naples, Rome, Pisa/Florence, Cannes, Majorca. It was a 7 day cruise with 6 port days, so if you want to get off the ship and see all those ports, it will be quite tiring for you. There was only one sea day and that was the first day. We like to see new things, but we also need rest (we work full time), so a port every other day is actually ideal in our minds. The 9 day Canary Islands cruise was better from that point of view: Barcelona, Tangier, Las Palmas, Lanzarote, Malaga (which we had to skip due to weather). We did not do any NCL excursions this time. We arranged our own excursions at Tangier (Tours by Said), Lanzarote and Naples. The rest of the ports we just did our own thing. The Cruise Critic roll call is excellent for arranging excursions outside of the ship's. We bought internet time (as we usually do) USD$125 for 250 minutes, plus we had 120 free minutes because of our Platinum status (30 minutes for each Platinum member for each cruise--which you could put all on the same account). The internet access seemed worse on this ship than we have previously experienced on other ships. The only 'good' connection we experienced was in our rooms. Trying to use it at other venues was a big frustration, and waste of paid internet time. We also used the iConcierge application in our group for messaging. There was a charge of USD$9.99 per person for that. It was decent, but we did find messages were delayed, or you had to remember to often close and reopen the program to keep it working. I think that if you are paying for internet access, the iConcierge messaging should be included and not an additional separate charge. One nice thing was that we were not charged for each cruise, we just paid once. Weather for our trip was much better than we thought we might encounter for that time of year. I would say almost every day was sunny, except for the 1-2 days on the ship where seas were high and we had to miss Malaga. Temps. were warm, not hot, maybe 15-20 (C). So it was very pleasant. All in all, our 2 cruises were great. We were just a little disappointed in the Epic, and probably will not deliberately seek her out for another cruise, unless it is a 2 week long cruise, that is not during a school break (read: way less kids/people on board). There were just way too many passengers for the room on the ship. NCL--we still love this cruise line, and bought the future cruise credits again (as we do each cruise we go on). Just wish they would make a couple of adjustments in what they charge you for. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
this old lady the NCL Spirit was a wonderful surprise, she is well maintained and has a wonderful choice of restaurants as always too much food :) Staff was very friendly and helpful Food, so many choices and really from a very good ... Read More
this old lady the NCL Spirit was a wonderful surprise, she is well maintained and has a wonderful choice of restaurants as always too much food :) Staff was very friendly and helpful Food, so many choices and really from a very good quality, we ate mostly at the selfservice restaurant and tried the steakhouse ( wonderful ) sushi ( not that bad ) and the italian restaurant ( which we disliked but food is very personal ) We did not love the decoration of the ship ( Chinese style ) but that is also personal same for the entertainment, not our cup of tea but the dancers were great. Our outside cabin was perfect and very quiet with a lot of storage. We choose this cruise for the itinerary and we can recommend the Canary Islands and Morocco during winter time as weather at all ports was perfect, weather at sea was rough which was for many people not that good ( seasick ) we just love a rocking ship. Everything went smoothly and we would book this cruise again without hesitation. if you like to walk off the ship into town on your own and have a very inexpensive cruise due to the fact that excursions are not really necessary you should choice this cruise. even Morocco / Casablanca is easy to explore as there is a shuttle to town where you can visit the souks and a 15 minutes walk brings you to a wonderful mosque which you can visit on certain time. As we are from Belgium our 1.30 H flight made this cruise perfect to have a break from our rainy winter. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
This was our first time cruising with NCL. We saw this cruise advertised and though it would be nice to get away from the UK for some winter sun. The package we chose included ultimate drinks package and four dine around options. The ... Read More
This was our first time cruising with NCL. We saw this cruise advertised and though it would be nice to get away from the UK for some winter sun. The package we chose included ultimate drinks package and four dine around options. The drinks package was fantastic there were numerous cocktails, spirits and soft drinks to chose from. The only down side was you had to pay for bottled water and coffees. However an Irish coffee was included in the drinks package. As you could get a glass of water from any of the bars the charge for water didn't really bother us. The food was varied and there was always something on the buffet in Raffles to ensure you didn't go hungry. The complementary restaurants - Garden Room, Windows and the Asian restaurants also had a good variety of food including seafood and steaks. The speciality restaurants were excellent with a lots of choice. We had no problem booking them and there was a very knowledgeable man on the booking desk for advice on the menu for each restaurant. It is also worth mentioning that before service in the restaurants the staff sample the food that is going to be served that evening so they can advise guests about it. The trips offered by the cruise line were expensive but that seems to be the norm for all cruises. Unfortunately there wasn't a free shuttle bus to take you from the ship into the nearest town when you were in port you had to pay anything from $5 to $15. In many of the ports it was a long walk from the ship to the terminal entrance but there were always taxis waiting by the ship. The entertainment was average but not as bad as some people made it out to be. The bingo was very expensive and as a consequence of this not very well attended. We had a mid-ship balcony cabin on deck 10 which was lovely and quiet. The cabin was spacious and the balcony had room for two chairs and a table. It was a nice place to sit and read or watch the scenery go by. A special mention to our cabin steward who took a pride in his work and made a variety of towel animals for us to find each evening. The staff in all the bars and restaurants were extremely friendly and courteous. They all had name badges and details of whether they were Italian, Indian etc. This was very useful as we were able to have a conversation with them using their name and asking about their homeland. Unfortunately not all the guests on board treated the staff with respect. Some of them were down right rude not saying please and thank you. Just because you have paid for a cruise doesn't entitle you to leave your manners at home. Unfortunately some of the guests took freestyle to mean they didn't have to make any effort with how they looked when using the restaurants. On the other hand many guests made the effort to dress up smartly casual. A dinner jacket would have really looked out of place and only a handful of men wore a jacket in the evening. Taking all of the above into consideration we had a lovely cruise and if this is the way NCL operate their ships we will be booking another cruise with them. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Really enjoyed this cruise other than the weather but this is not the fault of Norwegian Cruise Lines Despite previous reviews, the longest we had to wait for a table to eat in any of the restaurants (having being supplied with a pager) ... Read More
Really enjoyed this cruise other than the weather but this is not the fault of Norwegian Cruise Lines Despite previous reviews, the longest we had to wait for a table to eat in any of the restaurants (having being supplied with a pager) was twenty minutes. We waited in a nearby bar until it went off. The food was good in all the restaurants, sometimes a little cold in the Garden Cafe and we never went into the speciality restaurants. The adult pool and bar H2O was a suntrap which was welcome as it was cool, but you had to fight for a bed. All the bars were good and the bar staff were very accommodating. The things I disliked about the ship were firstly O'Sheehans bar and grill. When we first boarded we thought great, a proper pub, but after being in it a while it was dreadfully noisy as you have all the casino noise nearby and the noise of the games machines in O'Sheehans bar itself. Also when there is a film on in the Atrium you can watch it from O'Sheehans as the screen is big enough to cover both floors. However if you didnt want to watch a film and just have a drink in the pub, it was extremely noisy with all the other activities going on around it. It would have been best to build O'Sheehans as a pub with a duke box/music perhaps and keep it separately away from the noisy areas. We stopped going in it in the end and enjoyed the martini bar and whisky bar. Bliss Lounge wasnt for us but it was always full so each to their own. By the end of the holiday the lifts were annoying but you should expect this on a large ship with 16 floors. All the staff were nice but again the noise from the atrium and O'Sheehans made it difficult to hear the customer services staff at guest services. I would definitely go on this ship again to other destinations as we tend to not go to the same places twice if we can avoid it. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Was a little unsure having read some negative reviews and seeing as we were travelling during Easter school break worried it may be over crowded and hectic what with 4000 people onboard,we were pleasantly surprised to find there was little ... Read More
Was a little unsure having read some negative reviews and seeing as we were travelling during Easter school break worried it may be over crowded and hectic what with 4000 people onboard,we were pleasantly surprised to find there was little to worry about. After a short flight to Barcelona we boarded fairly quickly,to find a sunny pool deck, and a nice cold beer waiting for us. Cabin was spacious, kids beds one was a sofa bed, and an upper bunk dropped down from the ceiling above,functional, and enough space for our four suitcases to be tucked away. Lovely comfy bed,massive albeit a little short for longer legged folk.nice balcony,handy for keeping a fresh breeze through the cabin. Seperate toilet and shower which suited us as a family of 4, and a curtain too to seperate from the main cabin, as its quite close to the bed, but fine all the same.Our Cabin steward kept our room immaculate with little surprises of towel animals, he was so cheerful and friendly.(Mardi) We had Prosecco and strawberries for my husbands birthday.such friendly staff in all places. We loved the shows, priscilla! Burn the floor,(make sure you book these before you go to guarantee seats) and our favourite of all, was the cavern club, Beatles tribute act were superb. Had a little boogie in the disco.(Bliss lounge) Real fun times on board,good atmosphere,good vibes.plenty to keep you occupied.kids loved the pools,and slides,no great queues, and they did rock climbing frequently.dining was so easy and loved the freedom of eating wherever took your fancy. manhatten was our favourite,steaks were huge! Had some lovely cocktails And coffees in the Atrium bar, and cavern club. Was impressed by the variety and quality of food in the buffet, even at busy times, you could trot downstairs into La cuchina for a nicer calmer place to sit and eat, at lunchtime. Seating wasnt a problem too much only a couple of times we had a bit of a struggle to find a table, due to 2/3people sitting on a big table mainly. We ate at the Manhattan on a few evenings, never had to wait for a table, brilliant organisation, although wasnt too impressed with the Shanghai Asian, it just lacked something that the others offered.Didnt feel the need to pay for speciality dining as all the free dining options offered fantastic food. Wasn't over impressed with the ports of call, however this wasn't a huge issue for us.we were happy to just soak it up, have a little wander and enjoy time back on board.excursions proved too expensive for four of us,so gave the tours a miss.we were lucky to have the free beverage package, we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, decks space was fine,although on sunny days you did have to be pretty quick to choose the optimal sun beds,but never went without.there was no main middle atrium centre peice, as such,which is different to other cruises we have taken, and no real promenade as such to walk around, but it's just a different design. KIds weren't too bothered in the clubs,so didn't use this facility as they were in separate aged clubs, they just stayed in the pools and sports etc, it could do with a general kids area that could accommodate 11-15yrs perhaps. all in all, we would definitely book onto this ship again, perhaps a more interesting itinerary in sunnier months next time. We have mainly cruised P&O, Carnival and RCI, and we found this was a good mixture between good dining of P&O and Fun atmosphere of RCI, so we were impressed and found it very easy to navigate too. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
This is only my 2nd cruise so not much to compare against after going away last year on P&O Azura - my sister found an excellent deal for the family on Norwegian Epic which included the free drinks package - too good to be true for a ... Read More
This is only my 2nd cruise so not much to compare against after going away last year on P&O Azura - my sister found an excellent deal for the family on Norwegian Epic which included the free drinks package - too good to be true for a party of 11. We found Norwegian Epic to be an amazing large ship and enjoyed the freestyle cruising life it had to offer. Embarkation was very smooth as we had stayed 3 days earlier in an apartment in Barcelona and took a 5 minute walk to get the Port Bus for only a few euros each. Then after dropping off luggage a short wait in line before checking in, then onto the ship to try and find your way around. Disembarkation was equally as smooth walking off the ship after breakfast with no queues or waiting other than a 20 minute wait for a taxi. Kids Club: We signed my daughter into the kids club - surfers for my 9 year old and she made many friends and had lots of activities whilst being entertained, she usually only went in the evenings as she spent her days with us but enjoyed it very much, on a few occasions I was told off for collecting her too early. Dining: We paid extra a few weeks earlier for the 5 speciality dining restaurants and dined in Cagneys Steakhouse (lovely steaks), went to La Cucina (lovely Italian restaurant) meal was spoilt as ship was a little rocky this evening and children not feeling well, loved the dining experience of Teppanyaki and fun time had, Moderno Brazilian Steak Restaurant was another dining experience with a difference. The last speciality meal was the Cirque of Dreams which we had an amazing view (food was OK) but it was dark so could not see what you were eating! The normal restaurants are very good but by having a different restaurant every night made it so much more fun and exciting going out to dine. We did eat in the Garden Buffet sometimes for convenience but often walked around looking for a table and felt it was too busy. We booked our speciality dining restaurants prior to leaving and despite being 11 in the party we could only book the meals for tables of 6 and 5 but it was not trouble asking the restaurants on the day to change it to a table of 11 - very accommodating in the restaurants. Bars: Drinks package included was exceptionally good with bottled beers, wines, cocktails, spirits, soft drinks, juices etc all included. At times you did have to be a bit forceful to get served at the bars but eventually if you were patient then you got served soon enough. Ice Bar; On the last evening we decided to try the Ice Bar out as the child/teen & elders all wanted to see what it was like, so for $20 per person you get 2 drinks, wear a big coat & gloves and see how long you can stay in the cold - not too long when you have sandals on! Another experience never done before. Entertainment: Amazing and booked a few shows, hard to book some of the shows saying fully booked, they must keep a number of seats back for the stand by and because of no shows as I always managed to get in by either asking as walking in or by using the option of Stand By. I saw some amazing shows; Burn the floor, Priscilla, Cirque of Dreams, Motown (4Ever), Magician and Classics show. We joined in the Bingo and had lots of fun with the family - even had 2 winnings within the family. Pool/Slides: Due to the weather not being great I never ventured into the pool but the children 9 & 16 went on the slides a few times and had great fun, I'm sure in the better weather they would have large queues. We always found a sun bed or 2 around the top of the pool area, if not, then we ventured to the front of the ship and managed to get sunbeds in the quiet area. We did not book any tours/excursions and ventured off ourselves and found most of the port of calls to be very good, if only the weather was better then more beach days would have been had. I must recommend the cable cars in Funchal followed by the Toboggan Wicker Basket ride down the hill - very funny. Norwegian Epic was a huge ship and not for everyone, myself and family really enjoyed the cruise and eventually found our way around, love the freestyle dining, loved the drinks package, entertainment, children’s club, pools etc - Didn't like the weather - but that’s NCL's fault! Norwegian iConcierge; Between the family we downloaded the NCL app that enabled you to communicate to each other whilst on the ship a cost of $7.95 but worth it to let members of your group know where you are. Please be aware that not all shows/entertainment details are up to date. Finally, lovely to hear the announcements each morning about the port we were in but it would have been nice to have a review of the weather as we were in an inside cabin we had no idea until we got dressed and went out. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We embarked from Barcelona and were on board within 40 minutes despite managing to time our arrival with what seemed to everyone else who was sailing. Our bags were brought into our cabin by Norman, our steward, within an hour of boarding. ... Read More
We embarked from Barcelona and were on board within 40 minutes despite managing to time our arrival with what seemed to everyone else who was sailing. Our bags were brought into our cabin by Norman, our steward, within an hour of boarding. This was just the start of Norman's great and friendly service. Within 2 hours we were unpacked and ready to meet up with our friends. That's nothing short of a miracle as we do not travel light ( 4 large cases and 4 small cases, the contents of which were stored away easily in the generous storage that our cabin offered). First impressions of the ship was that it is massive. However the layout is pretty much in line with every other ship I've sailed on and I soon got my bearings (although I still manage to get my port and starboard mixed up). We were a large group, 12 of us but this rarely caused any problems if you planned ahead a little. The freeform dining worked well and for such a large party the longest we waited for a table was 20 minutes. The staff in the restaurants were all very friendly and helpful. I do have one small gripe. The Garden Café buffet shut at 10 p.m. every day and the only source of food after this time was in O'Sheehans pub. This is the first ship I've travelled on that didn't have the buffet open 24/7. I have to single out the entertainment in the Cavern Club. I am a self confessed music buff and I have to praise NCL for booking the Starlight's band. They played every night for 4 hours and produced some of the best entertainment I have ever had on a ship. The band were so friendly and much to my complete surprise and gratitude played a cover of Pink Floyd' 'Another Brick in the Wall' specifically for me. I subsequently learned that they had discovered that I was Pink Floyd fanatic and they spent their own time rehearsing this song and played it on the last night of the cruise. What a great thing to do and what a fabulous way to end my vacation. My thanks go to Cornel, Chester, Rick and Sasha who are the Starlight's band. We went to the two big shows, Priscilla Queen of the Desert and Burn the Floor. I'm not a lover of this type of entertainment but both were very well performed and full of energy. If I had to pick a favourite it would be Burn the Floor (once the first 5 minutes is out of the way) My other minor gripe is that the area around O'Sheehans and the Atrium is to too open and noisy especially if the weather isn't too good and people are forced inside. On most sea days the entertainment staff held quiz's and games in this area and at times it was really difficult to hear the questions. We never take ship organised excursions, preferring to organise ourselves. These were my highlights; Tenerife. My son who is a fluent Spanish speaker negotiated a great deal with a local taxi driver to take us to the summit of Mt. Teide. The landscapes and views were spectacular. We had a great day and were able to stop wherever we wanted on the journey. We got the trip for 120 Euro's for four people. Madeira. We walked to the cable car and took a ride to the top and then got the toboggan ride back down This was great fun and totally exhilarating. I'd recommend this to everyone. Malaga. Got the train from Malaga to Benalmedena. We left really strong winds behind in Malaga and spent hours on the beach at Benalmedena. Really nice resort with a super harbour. Disembarkation was as easy as getting on board. We were off the ship with all of our luggage within 30 minutes and on the way to the airport. All in all a super holiday. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We went Platinum this trip on NCL and no wonder with the incredible assistance they provided to me with my leg in a boot cast. I broke my ankle a few weeks before the trip. So I called my personal Cruise Consultant, who immediately stepped ... Read More
We went Platinum this trip on NCL and no wonder with the incredible assistance they provided to me with my leg in a boot cast. I broke my ankle a few weeks before the trip. So I called my personal Cruise Consultant, who immediately stepped up with a change of aft balcony to a handicapped aft balcony with no additional fee for the change. Then, she got me in touch with Special Needs At Sea for a motorized scooter which was delivered and retrieved from my stateroom. NCL arranged curbside wheelchair on/off assistance. So I was in business. What I especially appreciated were all the handicapped facilities from bathrooms to specially reserved easily accessible seats in the restaurants and showrooms. The buffet staff always assisted me and were very kind. The staff in Moderno were the very best. The stateroom attendant was also kind, leaving me ice each evening and morning to ice my ankle. The stateroom was fabulous with easily accessible bathroom and fold down seat in the shower. I can not imagine better treatment. The entertainment on NCL is always great but on the Epic there is so much to choose and to do. We did the Cirque Dreams and several shows. The pre-scheduling is a great idea with such a large contingent of passengers. I could not do some of the shore excursions but they were limited by the vendor buses which either could or could not transport the scooter. The pier in Tangiers was too long and without a tram, so I did not attempt that port. Instead I went to the Salon and had a wonderful day getting the works for my hair. Natalie was a treasure. I passed the whole afternoon there. We really needed this vacation after a long and difficult year. Thanks to NCL we more than got a great vacay. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
SHIP ITSELF Very large with lots of small capacity areas No soaring atrium like the smaller ships but mainly 1 storey with a few areas with open ceiling to next level so more of a hotel feel than traditional cruise ship The ... Read More
SHIP ITSELF Very large with lots of small capacity areas No soaring atrium like the smaller ships but mainly 1 storey with a few areas with open ceiling to next level so more of a hotel feel than traditional cruise ship The weather wasn’t consistently good enough to use the outside areas but when sun was out pool deck very busy .The waterpark area takes away from pool space but if you wanted a quiet area to sunbathe deck 18 was a good place Novelty ideas such as the Ice Bar never seemed to be too busy-not present at all on the newest ship The Escape so perhaps the novelty value is just that It took me a while for the light to dawn that starboard corridors had blue and beige carpets and blue lighting on the stairs and lifts whereas portside had orange and beige! There are no patterns of fish swimming in direction of travel which is a great idea on other NCL ships to give clue whether you are going forward or aft and if you head the wrong way they are long corridors Our muster station was the Casino which is a terrible idea I’m used to muster drills being done in restaurants etc but the Casino with its machines blocking view of crew members trying to demonstrate safety procedures and everyone squashed into a narrow hall would be dreadful in case of a real emergency BARS There are plenty of bars to choose from! The Ultimate Beverage Package [UBP] has been offered as a free perk for a long time mainly for ocean view and above so seemed many people had this-it was still being offered for $79 per day plus 18% gratuity and less publicised the wine and beer package at $10 per day less. Also available wine packages and soda packages For the first time we found getting served at the bars or waiting for a circulating bar waiter to take our order to be hit or miss-certainly not up to usual NCL standards. They seemed to be overwhelmed at busy times and even at quieter times the waiters seemed more interested in collecting dirty glasses than checking who was looking to order a drink-usually they do both with a smile and some quick conversation. RESTAURANTS We ate mainly at O Sheehans or the garden cafe for convenience and to be able to eat when we felt hungry. We only ate once in Manhattan restaurant for lunch to meet up with cruise roll callers which was fine Lots of people had the dining package as a perk so speciality restaurants busy and difficult to get a reservation at peak times We only eat in speciality restaurants if have a voucher-in this case we each had a platinum latitudes meal for Le Bistro .In the past this could also be used in Moderno or La Cucina but the only alternative now is La Cucina We preferred Le Bistro to La Cucina both for speed of service and ambience ENTERTAINMENT There is plenty going on day and night to appeal to all tastes We found our favourite band the Starlights-a rockn roll band playing in the Cavern Club most nights Duo Luna a guitarist and female vocalist were appearing in the atrium or Shakers bar and Paulo a guitarist/vocalist playing in Maltings We went to Howl at the Moon a couple of times and found them entertaining but not as good as previous performers we have seen onboard the larger NCL Ships Priscilla queen of the Desert was the signature theatre performance and was hilarious However there are numerous written and spoken warnings that the show is not suitable for children or the easily offended but the audience still had a high percentage of young children! It was school Easter holidays in the UK so expected a lot of children on board I didn’t notice too many during the day as avoided pool deck and the kids clubs were popular However late at night there were a lot of children running wild around the bar areas whilst their parents were nowhere to be seen or oblivious to their little darlings getting underfoot STATEROOMS We were in 12185 a large balcony. Due to the external shape of the ship this meant a triangular shape added to the regular balcony which meant could accommodate at least 1 lounger as well as the standard 2 chairs and table. The set up of the room was with couch next to balcony which did give easy access to the balcony The controversial bathroom set up was a non issue for us-we have been married 30 years! However I spoke to someone who was on the inaugural Epic trip about 6 years ago and said the frosting on the doors was a lot more transparent then! THERMAL SPA I pre purchased a cruise length pass for $179 a $20 reduction than if bought on board Epics Mandara Spa and Salon is supposed to be the largest spa at sea A unique feature of Epics Thermal spa is the open area at the aft with 6 padded loungers and 2 couches which give wonderful views and great to enjoy in good weather Inside the communal area are several heated tile loungers although 3 of them had signs on saying cold bed-ie needing maintenance Plenty of padded loungers and chairs,sauna and steam room with windows to open sea The therapy pool with hot tubs and pressure jets was always popular Inside the single sex area is another steam room and sauna with windows to sea which was hardly ever used so a good quiet area As you hand your keycard over at spa reception they give you a wristband with an allocated locker. The staff then store your room card in a file folder corresponding to that number which means it is efficient to return your room card at the end of the session That works fine until someone uses a random locker and “yours” is in use. Unfortunately the staff are inconsistent with dealing with this, some will give you a different free locker, others will suggest you use any free locker but don’t note which further compounds the problem and still others will open that locker and move the stuff to another one and lock it without informing the original occupant! I treated myself to a series of hot stone massages under the 10,20,30 offer whereby you get progressive discounts Still very expensive but I had plenty of OBC! EXCURSIONS We did private tours in 3 ports and can highly recommend Bruno from tripgrancanaria John Reid from Tenerifeprivatetours And Jeff from Hit the Road Madeira Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
I have spent the last year quietly watching blogs and message boards and gathering information to help with our first cruise with Norwegian cruise line. I choose the ship because we were traveling with my two children. I have to say I did ... Read More
I have spent the last year quietly watching blogs and message boards and gathering information to help with our first cruise with Norwegian cruise line. I choose the ship because we were traveling with my two children. I have to say I did not believe the brochure when it said "your children will not want to leave the ship" but it is so true. My girls age 5 and age 8 both asked " Mummy when can we go back to our ship " at each and every port ! and we had tears when it was time to leave. Embarkation was as organised as it could be we arrived on a bank holiday so it was an unusual day with the port closed until 2pm. We got a bonus tour of Barcelona which was lovely but we were all so tired after being up all night to get there to enjoy it. It also meant that all these coaches touring in the morning all headed to the dock at the same time which meant for long queues to check in. We didn't use the specialty restaurants the choice in the garden cafe was really good and changed daily . We found a seat everytime in the garden cafe but after reading on here about food going cold we made sure we had a table before even looking or getting food. We loved to sit and over look the front of the ship two evenings we were treated with dolphins playing .We did book two of the other included more formal dinning venues that were included in the price so we had some special nights . We all had drinks passes which were free as we booked early. They were strict with measures but the choice was amazing you could pretty much have anything you wanted at any time of day . Yes you do pay for bottled water and posh coffee but there are plenty of water stations and regular tea and coffee stations on deck that you don't need too. The entertainers were really good very professional and worked hard . The circus show is awesome and well worth the extra charge,my 5 year old sat still for the whole two hours and was mesmerized ! I had no problems booking any shows at all! Although I did read up and take advise from fellow travelers and book the bigger ones Presilla and burn the floor at home before we set sail. The web site is very good but as I was booking for several rooms I also know there customer service phone line will book them for you too ,shows are available to book 3 months before you sail. I did use the TV in the cabin to book smaller shows like the comedian which saved the queues at the box office. I am not sure why the ice bar is not on any on the online booking systems in cabin or web site but it was easy to book in person with the desk outside the bar itself. Bowling is first come first served so no booking needed for that one ,we only had to wait 20 mins for a lane. We loved our daily family organised activity as well as time in the pools and flumes in the afternoon .The girls both enjoyed the club and asked to go in it so we were able to have free time as adults which was great and guilt free as we knew they were well looked after and happy.On the first day you are allowed in and are shown around ,there after you sign them in and out with keycards but dont see what they get up too .The space itself is huge. We had passes for the thermal suite which was well worth its money ,we spent colder mornings and some late evenings in there . One time I had the whole place to myself and at most there were about 20 people in there. It does get busy its all about picking your time. We went on organised shore excursions at all ports and enjoyed them all. I would say with kids the beach trip on Gran Canaria was a great place but not long enough most of the time was on the bus travelling. We had 2 hours in Morgan and the tour guide didn't even mention a beach only markets for shopping. By the time we found the beach the girls only had an hour before we had to walk back to coach. The dunes are awesome but we only got half an hour there. Some elderly people on the coach barely got down to see them before having to walk back to the coach. The best trip for the kids was Loro Park spectacular shows and well looked after animals. We booked all our shore excursions before our trip on the web page. I was surprised to find one cancelled in Morocco , the one place I did not want to go on my own. All the less expensive trips were fully booked so only the more expensive were available so book trips early. The ship is not formal at all .My husband did take a suit but he didn't feel the need to use it only a shirt and tie. Some nights you saw people in full sequin gowns and black tie .Its entirely down to the group you are with . We did take out the unlimited wifi .It doesn't allow for multiple devices so it was a pain logging one of and another on. It did allow for the kids to have quiet time and for us not to panic over them running up big bills. We also used iconcierge app with such a big ship it was a god send to be able to use our phones on the wifi network. It also meant that we could give the kids staff our phone numbers . With the best will in the world you can say where your going to be but plans change and the ship is huge. My mother in law had a single studio suite not far from our cabin . I was really impressed i think she had more space than we had and I had a sneaky peak in there coffee lounge, it was brilliant . I had to pay for my posh coffee upstairs and they could just go and get one .The only thing was with all the fancy lighting in her room we couldn't work out how to just get just a regular light as it scrolled threw colours but that could just be us. That said she spent a lot of time on our balcony or upstairs so that didn't matter. Disembarkation was very smooth we literally walked of ship at our set time only a handful of other people around ,found our bags and got on coach for airport. It took a little while for the coach to fill up but not long. I have seen lots of comments about extra charges on board ship . Yes they do add up but and this is a big but this cruise was a fraction of the quotes I had from other ships for similar cruise this year and even with the extras .Note to parents with smaller children the key cards given out to the kids allow them to spend money. The games in the bar are swipe cards! We allowed our girls to play table hockey but only with us $1.50 each game . There is a form you can ask for that will stop them spending money you need to sign and return to guest services. I can't comment on the gym we never found it in 10 days ,but I didn't look for it either. Would we travel on the Epic again Absolutely!!!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Easter break with family. Embarkation was smooth staff v good. We had wait until announcement that cabins where ready but acceptable. Happy with cabin layout and location. First night ate in cagneys was really good experience felt ... Read More
Easter break with family. Embarkation was smooth staff v good. We had wait until announcement that cabins where ready but acceptable. Happy with cabin layout and location. First night ate in cagneys was really good experience felt good start to holiday. Sadly other nights dining there not good, service poor, long waits. Far too long in dining room with 3 children. Bistro faired better apart from last night which was shame as was our last night. Buffet dining bit of pain trying to get table. It was Easter break and ship was full. Too many people for staff to cope. The bar service was worse part of holiday, although great to have UBP to get a waiter to get drink was nigh impossible. And one bar man on ship on two occasions was very rude. Went to burn the floor and loved it, and Priscilla was amazing, very entertaining. Other entertainment when we managed to get into venue was good, only problem again was too small venues and too many people wantin too few places. The epic is nice ship but with some bad planning. The casino area is way too big takes almost full deck, there are too few sitting places both inside and out. And to allow smoking in casino area really bad if you are asthmatic. Ö shenanigans was really good with excellent wait staff and decent food. We had few issues on cruise reported to guest services that were not dealt with well. Sadly our experience of guest relations poor service has continued on our return. I have waited over 5 weeks for a promised refund that I was told would be 15 days and trying to get email or any kind of response from NCL is harder than speaking to the queen! The weather on cruise was not as good as we would have liked but we made the most if it. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We probably took this cruise at the wrong time of year for us as we will explain further on, but certainly learned from the occasion. The trip was at Easter and took in Barcelona (embarkation), Tangier, Canary Islands, Madeira and ... Read More
We probably took this cruise at the wrong time of year for us as we will explain further on, but certainly learned from the occasion. The trip was at Easter and took in Barcelona (embarkation), Tangier, Canary Islands, Madeira and Malaga. Embarkation was very smooth and quick. We arrived a little early but were aboard within 45 minutes of check in opening, even though we had to go through the obligatory process of staged photographs before making our way aboard. Cabins weren't ready until around 1400 but we were allowed to leave our things (water etc) outside our cabin door before exploring the ship. The ship itself is huge but quite easy to find your way around. The casino area is very big and at times smelt stale as cigarette smoking was allowed in there. You sometimes have to walk through this area to reach levels where some of the lifts did not stop. We never had any problem with waiting for the lifts to arrive as has been reported in previous reviews even though the ship was full with over 3000 passengers. On boarding the ship and in every entrance to the food halls there are The crew were superb, probably the best we have sailed with. They were helpful, polite and cheerful, much better than I would have been with some of the things I saw them deal with. Our cabin steward (Bagus) was extremely friendly and helpful and left a different towel design on our bed every night....(the monkey was great!). Free style dining was wonderful. To be able to chose when to eat and not clock watch waiting for your allocated dining time was so relaxing. We ate at the Garden Cafe (buffet style) for the first four evenings, and although at times it was difficult to find a free table we never really had cause to complain. The food was varied and in the main very enjoyable, especially when you think of the number of passengers that have to be catered for. The best for me was the beef curry and the puddings!! Nearly every night there was a specialty meal of some sort.......apart from an English evening! We also had breakfast in the same place every day and what a joy to have a freshly fried egg or omelette if you so desired. The only downside was the last night of the trip when it seemed as though the chef was trying to use up all his left overs. Disappointing, so next time we would probably go to one of the restaurants. The other complimentary dining ares we tried were Taste (service a bit slow and disjointed), O'Sheehan's (superb and open almost 24/7) and Great Outdoors (the biggest minute steaks I have ever had!). We had a 3 meal dining package as well, so tried Cagney's, excellent service and good food, La Cucina, which we both found disappointing and Teppanyaki, which again we did not enjoy. We did hear good reviews about Le Bistro from other passengers, but never went. We could not fault the entertainment aboard, and would say that some of it was West End or Broadway quality, especially Priscilla and Burn the Floor while Cirque Dreams should not be missed. All the shows were quality and a small tip would be to book them up on line well beforehand, as they can quickly become fully booked. Now the problem.........finding somewhere to sit and chill out, both on sunny days and on chilly days. We encountered something that we have never done before, and to this day I don't know whether it is the size of the ships and passenger numbers or because it was holiday time. We could not find anywhere to sit and just read a book or whatever due to seats, deck chairs etc being reserved with towels and bags. Seating was being reserved early in the morning and left empty for 2-3 hours at times,while families went to breakfast or even ashore! One passenger told us that when he asked someone "if this was not really on" after 3 chairs were left "reserved" on deck for nearly 3 hours, he was told to "mind his own business!" I can understand this happening to a certain extent in the family pool areas, but hot tubs and adult only areas....no! It is mainly due to this that we are seriously considering not travelling with the Epic again, even though there are a lot of positives. The ports of call were varied, as was the weather. We did not take part in any organised trips, and found our way around quite easily. The only town that we ever bothered in was Tangier. We were expecting this as there is a preview on board in the Theatre about all ports of call. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
The ultimate drinks package at $79.95 per day is dreadful value. You can't get water coffee or juice. The rooms are a really bad design with a sink at the end of bed and glass doors on both toilet and shower. When our cabin ... Read More
The ultimate drinks package at $79.95 per day is dreadful value. You can't get water coffee or juice. The rooms are a really bad design with a sink at the end of bed and glass doors on both toilet and shower. When our cabin attendant knocked we couldn't answer the door or my husband would have been on show to anyone passing. Book everything before you travel or you won't be able to see any show unless you queue for a very long time and then have to stand through performances. There is a problem after dinner as there are not enough seats. There is an entire deck for the empty casino but nowhere to sit in the evenings. The service is dire unless you eat at the beginning of mealtime. Should you like to eat at the end of service the staff just want you out as quick as possible. The food is excellent, the facilities good ( except lack of seating) but I will never travel with n c l again! Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
OK ladies & gentlemen. Let's get one thing straight here. Everyone who complains about the Epic in these reviews does not know how to: Cruise like a Norwegian! Norwegians like the hustle & bustle of the crowds ... Read More
OK ladies & gentlemen. Let's get one thing straight here. Everyone who complains about the Epic in these reviews does not know how to: Cruise like a Norwegian! Norwegians like the hustle & bustle of the crowds gathering around venues. Norwegians like the excitement of trying to locate a table in the Garden Cafe to enjoy their meals. Norwegians are social, outspoken, & are generally not on board for a silent meditation ritual. Norwegians like to talk, dance, go on exciting shore excursions, use the pool deck (weather permitting), splash in the Mandara Spa, take lots of pictures, eat everything good & not so good. Norwegians like to get a massage, an acupuncture treatment, visit the salon. Norwegians like to try out a specialty restaurant such as Le Bistro while on board. Norwegians like to praise, complain, meet people of all backgrounds, nationalities, and races. Norwegians like to get there early to save seats for their cruise mates. Norwegians like to connect at all levels while on board. If you are not OK with the aforementioned, the Norwegian Epic may not be the ship for you. This was my fourth time on the Epic. I had cruised on her 3 times previously on the Western & Eastern Caribbean itineraries from Miami when she was stationed there. Warning: The following review is biased in great favor of the Epic. First of all, as anticipated, the ships's officers & crew were a fabulous bunch of the most gracious, kind, & generous human beings you will ever meet on a ship with this type of demographic. Don't forget that you have a large mix of singles, such as myself, couples, & varied nationalities on board. This bunch may be rather demanding to say the least. Our trip took us to the Canary Islands & Morocco! Having been on the cruise critic roll call for this sailing, I was always able to find others to mingle with when I wished. My experience with the roll call was positive in every respect. Honestly, I have never met a group of cruisers who were so into the adventure we were to share together. I already miss many of the roll call members & regret not having said goodbye to some:( Some of you might be reading this & reminiscing about the cruise!!! Hi all! The shore excursions booked through NCL were nothing short of fabulous. I was unable to go on excursions with the cruise critic organized excursions because all the tours were full when I joined the roll call. I did not opt to cancel my confirmed NCL excursions in favor of being wait listed on a possible excursion with the cruise critic group either. I must admit though, this decision was difficult to make. In lieu of the situation, I tried to spend as much on-board quality time with as many roll call members as I could. We enjoyed several group lunches & dinners, as well as our meet & greet, cabin crawl, and slot pull events. It was a total blast!!! The Epic was as beautiful as ever. Keep in mind that she's one of a kind with no sister ships. So you've either been on the Epic or not. The newly carpeted Deck 5 is super nice. Tranquil soft tones give this all important deck a sophisticated ambience. The selection of food was incredible as always. Some of the food was not to my taste, but you simply have to choose something different. It's not like you are going to be nutritionally deprived as some of the reviewers would have you believe. My cabin steward was a gem of a guy & he made the best towel animals I've seen on any cruise! Beautifully tucked in bed spread, cleanliness to the tee! I'm sure many of us Epic fans are truly excited that she will be returning to the States. We definitely want her back. So looking forward to be in the sun with her as she will be sailing the Caribbean from Port Canaveral in the near future. Can't wait to welcome you back to North American waters. C U soon my love. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
This review is for all the reviews I have read that are nitpicking the NCL Epic and it's enormous size. It's a big boat. True. It will require some walking to get around. True. You know it's a big boat when you book the ... Read More
This review is for all the reviews I have read that are nitpicking the NCL Epic and it's enormous size. It's a big boat. True. It will require some walking to get around. True. You know it's a big boat when you book the cruise, so you're not allowed to complain about how big it is in your review. Now, let's get to the review. This was a fantastic family cruise for us in every possible aspect. I'll break it down quickly by categories. Food - We did not use any of the specialty restaurants, as we have young kids, but I felt as though I ate very well with a good variety of well prepared dishes every night. A special thank you to the staff of Taste, as the service was especially good. Beverages - We had the drink package for this cruise, and while some people complain about what is doesn't include, we were very satisfied with all that it did. The only weird thing was that the mini-bar in the room wasn't included, even though the same drinks were included if you were in a bar/restaurant. Splash Academy - Fantastic, utterly fantastic. To all the staff, our sincere thanks for entertaining our kids everyday and allowing us to have some lovely adult time for dinners and drinks. Our kids didn't want to leave to go to meals, we practically had to drag them out they were having so much fun. Shore Excursions - We always book our own, but the ship has a good variety of trips for every port if you choose to use them. Service - Impeccable from everyone. I didn't see one staff member that wasn't smiling, saying hello or offering to help you with something. From the waiters clearing breakfast dishes to the bartenders to the guest services staff, everyone was extremely pleasant, professional and friendly. Entertainment - We did not go to the shows except for "The Beatles", which was enjoyable, because that's not part of why we vacation/cruise in general. From other people we met, the general feedback is that the shows were better than average, but don't expect a Las Vegas/Broadway quality show. Again, that is just feedback from other people. Summary - This is a lovely, clean, well appointed boat which can easily appeal to a broad range of tastes. The jogging track outside is a bit of a joke, but the fitness centre is state of the art. We would definitely recommend this boat to anyone looking for a getaway to any of its destinations. We are already looking into a Caribbean cruise for the two of us in Jan of 2017 as an anniversary getaway. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
In cruising, as in life, some things you like, some you don`t and the NCL Epic is no exception, but the good far outweigh the bad. So, let`s get rid of the negatives straight away. The design is odd; from the well documented ... Read More
In cruising, as in life, some things you like, some you don`t and the NCL Epic is no exception, but the good far outweigh the bad. So, let`s get rid of the negatives straight away. The design is odd; from the well documented toilet/bathroom arrangement in the staterooms to the fact that the lifts are at either end of the ship. Also the casino area, even if you`re a gambler, is far too big and a lot of the tables are empty a lot of the time, so the staff could be better employed. The size of the ship is not a major issue, however, it`s all relative. We`ve sailed on the Jade and the Spirit, both of which are half the size of the Epic, so initially it looks a bit of a beast, but you soon get used to it, and it never feels overcrowded. So, now, let`s look at the positive side. The entertainment is fantastic, from the glittering stage shows and dance routines of Priscilla and Burn the Floor through to an excellent Motown show, a superb group of singers called 4Ever, and a couple of very funny comedians. Most of the shows have to be prebooked(unless you want to queue up on standby) as the theatre is really too small for a ship this size, although the acts do appear at different times throughout the cruise. Some of them also appear in another venue on the ship so you should be able to catch them at some point. There is also the Cavern Club where you will find the Epic Beatles, among others. Their sound and mannerisms are brilliant but you`ll need to be in early as it gets pretty packed. The comedy club is another venue with terrific entertainment and great atmosphere from some first class musicians. The one slight downside was the Cirque Sol for which we paid extra. What they did was very good but I was expecting trapeze rather than mainly ground based acts. Not quite what it said on the tin! I cannot fault the food. We ate in both the main restaurants, Taste and Manhattan, and thoroughly enjoyed all the meals, although the menu, particularly the starters should have had a better choice. In the Garden Cafe and O`Sheehan`s the food was equally as appertising. The service, overall, was faultless, very efficient, friendly and professional. And the cleanliness, amazing! We spotted on one occassion in the Manhattan an inspection of the tables down to the minutest detail that you would not find in a lot of top class establishments. Our steward, Rhayan, was magnificent; always available and kept the stateroom immaculate. Everytime I saw him it looked as though he`d just finished a 10 mile run. So, all in all, a very enjoyable cruise. Everbody has an opinion but don`t be put off by negative reviews. Thanks to all the crew on the Epic. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
I sailed first time with NCL with my aunt, her husband and their adult daughter(my cousin). This was my third cruise. I found out i was going just a month ahead. I flew by myself to Barcelona and met my relatives there at the airport. We ... Read More
I sailed first time with NCL with my aunt, her husband and their adult daughter(my cousin). This was my third cruise. I found out i was going just a month ahead. I flew by myself to Barcelona and met my relatives there at the airport. We stayed at the Gaudi hotel one night and the next afternoon we boarded the Norwegian Epic. The employees at the desk were really nice and everything went smoothly. I didn't go to the teen zone until a couple days into the cruise since i thought it would be empty, turns out it wasn't that empty. The staff was so nice and funny and the activities turned out to be really fun. I liked that they were strict about no adults or under 13 years old and that they had 13-17 years in the same group. The food was really good too, but i do think RC have better food onboard but that might just be me. We tried all te resturants and i liked Taste the best, i thought the food was best there and the service as well. At the Manhattan room the service was pretty slow. The ports the boat visited was Tangier, Las Palmas, Tenerife, Funchal and Malaga. Most of the excursions were great but the tour guide could have been better on most of the tours. My personal favorite port would be Funchal or Tenerife. In Funchal we got to take the cable car up and the view was amazing. Then we walked a bit and got to ride a wicker sledge downhill. Later on we also visited a viewpoint "Eira Do Serrado" and it was truly beatiful. Whilst in Tenerife i got to see the vulcano Teide where there was snow and also a really beautiful view. All places were really beautiful in their own way though. The cabin, i lived in a midship inside with my cousin. It was pretty tiny but since we only slept and changed there it didn't really matter. One thing i didnt like was that there wasn't really a bathroom. There was a small shower cabin and on the oppesite side there was room where the door didnt really close(it was some kind of sliding door but at the top and bottom there were a few centimeters open) so if the other person was in the room, they could hear you. And outside that room was where the sink was. It was easy to use the wardrobe and safe. It was also very handy to be able to push the suitcase under the bed since in some places that is not possible for some reason. Overall i liked it though i do like RCCL better in some cases. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Have cruised with a number of other cruise lines but first time and last with NCL. THE Epic is just too big and too crowded especially when the weather keeps people in doors. There is just no where to just sit and chill. Very difficult to ... Read More
Have cruised with a number of other cruise lines but first time and last with NCL. THE Epic is just too big and too crowded especially when the weather keeps people in doors. There is just no where to just sit and chill. Very difficult to find any seating in the evenings unless you are a gambler. The casino which takes up over half a deck had hundreds of machines and tables free and an area you could not really avoid walking through the smell of stale tobacco. Seemed a total waste of space. Drinks were on the expensive side. Service at the complimentary Taste and Manhatten restaurants was on the whole good but on occasions was poor. eg. One Breakfast took 40 minutes from coffee and ordering to the first food turning up. Dinner at Taste on the first night took over 2 hours. The cabins are somewhat bizarre. Glass doors on toilet and shower with a curtain to draw across the room( you need to be very familiar with your room mate!!!) and a very SMALL wash basin set in the main cabin dressing table . Hated this. There are some positive aspects. The standard of food was good but often came luke warm to cold. Enjoyed the two meals at the Chinese which was complimentary but not a great deal of choice. The ship is clean and the cabin steward was excellent and kept the room spotless and well equipped. Embarkation and disembarkation was good. The queue on embarkation was daunting but surprisingly did not take that long. The various entertainment around the ship was good although only saw one show. Always difficult to find seats but admit that I was with a group of 8. I really liked the idea of being able to book the time of dining in the evening and did not find it difficult to find acceptable times. You can also pre book your shows. If NCL want to improve in my opinion they need to reduce the casino size and introduce quiet areas. Give some thought to the facilities in the cabins and look at a way to serve hot food on a regular basis. Most of all they need to reduce the number of guests as the big no no for me was the over crowding. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
First a positive , food very good . Cabin was clean , but , a toilet in a glass box ! Not for us , you entered cabin between toilet box and shower cabinet . No privacy , just a curtain to pull across , the wash basin was in vanity area of ... Read More
First a positive , food very good . Cabin was clean , but , a toilet in a glass box ! Not for us , you entered cabin between toilet box and shower cabinet . No privacy , just a curtain to pull across , the wash basin was in vanity area of bedroom , and consequently you were always in the way . The queues were a big issue , you had to pre book shows , then wait in line for 30 mins and if you were late your seats went to a standby person. My husband is disabled , and the standing about wasn't 't easy . We became experts at waiting in line S there were always queues for restaurants , and if you found somewhere to sit , you were reluctant to give it up , as you knew it would be almost impossible to find another . Which ever designer thought a big ,black, defacating dog way a good idea ,must be potty , not art , just disgusting . We paid 300 euros to come home early , and it was the best thing we could have done . We couldn't even get help from reception to change flights , we went to a travel agent in Tenerife, who was wonderful . We went to two shows burn the floor which was excellent , pricilla queen of the desert which has very good costumes but not a great story , music good though . We also saw a comedian , all had to be pre booked . Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Do'nt like the construction of the Epic. Viewing the exterior it needs some imagination to recognize the traditional ship shape. Seems as in the beginning there was a ship and afterwards strange constructions were built upon it. ... Read More
Do'nt like the construction of the Epic. Viewing the exterior it needs some imagination to recognize the traditional ship shape. Seems as in the beginning there was a ship and afterwards strange constructions were built upon it. Neither like the open decks, confusing, chaotic ... no style. The interior design seems as ten different designers made each there own thing; some were nice, some were not, so many styles mixed together makes this ship has no soul. Never saw a larger casino, a bigger shopping center ... less would be more space for lounges and perhaps a few more square meters for the smoking guests; i'm not a smoker but NCL is descriminating their smoking guests when putting them all together in a dark 3 x 10 meters cigar bar with noisy and bad working fans; is it not cynical to allow smoking in the casino only for ... gamblers ? money depasses health ? Cabins are OK, i like the "wave" construction, like the dark wooden wall with lots of space , i like the spacious shower; i like the separate toilet; the sink in the cabin is a little bit unusual but is not a real con.Balcony is nice, for breakfast on the balcony we missed the larger table we found previously on other cruiseships. Got strange and ennoying noises in the cabin when the balcony door was open, cabin steward nor technician could help so we fixed problem ourselves with some towels between ceiling and lightplate. No bad word about the food onboard NCL, you cannot have better on any similar class of cruiseship; the free dining is great, both the main restaurants and the complementary special ones are serving a large variety of excellent dishes. The buffet restaurant is spacious and has a fresh garden style design, here also food is excellent and although we prefer the food kiosk style we had on the Jade before, nicely presented; just be aware that this is a large ship with a few thousand guests filling up their plates for breakfast, lunch and dinner, too crowded for us so we had most of the meals (incl breakfast and lunch) served at the table in the nice Manhattan restaurant . We had the drink package that includes almost all alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks as well as a limited choice of good wines; unfortunately no cappucino nor special coffees included ! We found no need to try speciality restaurants; also fee to be paid was not so clear because understood that apart from the “entry-fee” (20 or 30 $ per person) there was an extra surcharge for some special dishes. Were a little bit disappointed that drink package was not valid on disembarkation day ! Although Epic is a big ship with many, many guests, the service in bars and restaurants is generally spoken client friendly and professional with few exeptions on both the + and the - side. As we previously visited all the cities on this route at least 2 or 3 times before, we did not book any excursion. Mostly ship was docked nearby city center there was no need for shuttle service. What NCL should not do : informing the guests that in Lanzarote there is a NCL shuttle service going to the center at 5 kms from the harbour at 15 $ per person without telling that there is also a nice walktrail of about 3,5 kms and that another option is the local taxi at 10 $ per cab one way. Also in Barcelona the NCL shuttle is twice the price of the special public shuttle from the harbour to the center. I think, and this is my suggestion for all cruise companies, there should be a free shuttle service in each harbour except when the ship docks near to the city center (Malaga, Tanger …). Epic was the first ship where we needed reservations for each evening show or special event; we find this not very “free styling” , so we did not attend any show or event during this cruise. Embarkation and disembarkation well organised. Booked the airport transfers with NCL, for early arrivers there was as free citytour added with the transfer, brilliant idea ! Final conclusion: NCL : YES, Epic : NO Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Since we already went on a cruise with Norwegian Epic before, I was convinced that the vacation would be great. Well I don't know what happened with this ship in a few years time, but I can honestly say that I will not be cruising ... Read More
Since we already went on a cruise with Norwegian Epic before, I was convinced that the vacation would be great. Well I don't know what happened with this ship in a few years time, but I can honestly say that I will not be cruising with NCL again. The buffet restaurant (Garden Cafe) was way too crowded. Everyday we had to walk around for at least 15/20 minutes to find a table with our son of eight months. Also to go on the elevator from one floor to another took a lot of time, due to the large amount of people. I saw some bugs on the salade more than once and when the tv was not working for 2 days, they did nothing to compensate this. In the shop on deck 7, I saw a dress that I liked and asked for anoter one same size as it had a stain lipstick. When the girl noticed that the one we had was the last one in that size, she asked her manager if they could clean the one with the stain..she replied to her and us:'' No we don't do that and we also do not give discount, take another one. That was the rudest thing ever!!! The shows on board were so so, also not like the the last time. When I asked the guy in the restaurant if he could clean our table, because there were still plates glasses from the people before us he screamed: I will when I have time! All in all horrible service and not worth the money that we paid for this trip. I am only positive about the guy who cleaned our room, he was very friendly. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
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