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2,377 Norwegian (NCL) Entertainment Cruise Reviews

This was my first cruise ever. Went with two of my friends and my girlfriend. We traveled to Bermuda from Boston. Didn't know what to expect. Ship: The Norwegian Dawn is a big and beautiful ship with lots of things to do on-board. ... Read More
This was my first cruise ever. Went with two of my friends and my girlfriend. We traveled to Bermuda from Boston. Didn't know what to expect. Ship: The Norwegian Dawn is a big and beautiful ship with lots of things to do on-board. Rooms: We stayed in an inside cabin and loved it. It is comfortable and very clean. Got a lot of good sleep. Room sturits are very friendly and nice. Our friends had a balcony room and it was awesome. Spent more time in their room because of the view. Nice to relax on the balcony. Food: Can be a hit or a miss. Some restaurant are unbelievable and others are not so much. Bought a 3 dinner package and was disappointed by couple places we went to. Bamboo is an Asian food restaurant, thought it would be good but boy were we disappointed. Not worth it at all. Went to Cagney's Statehouse and were very disappointed in the service. Our steak wasn't cooked the way we ordered. DO NOT EAT ANY OF THE SOUPS. Los Lobos is a Mexican restaurant and it is amazing. Get the Guac! Our server named "Faruk" is the guy you want. He will tell you how it is and will not disappoint. We put our trust in his hands and he kept bringing us delicious foods and drinks. Hands down the best servant we have ever had. Venetian is great for breakfast and lunch. We had a server named "Diaz", we was very good. Good assortment of food. Bimini Grill by the Oasis pool has awesome burgers and drinks. Aqua is a great place for dinner. Le Bistro is a French restaurant which we saved for last. We were blown away by the service and the food. Everything was so delicious. Service was outstanding. The Garden Cafe which is a buffet, has a great variety of food for everyone. Everything was clean and food was fresh. There are a lot of restaurants that you can go to. Trust me, you will gain some weight. Gained 10lbs myself. Crew: Crew is great. These guys make the whole experience that much better. They treat you as if you own the ship. They are there to help with anything you need. Definitely are understated. They go above and beyond to make sure you have what you need and that you are happy. Entertainment: There are always things going on all the time. Acrobatics, comedy, music, movies, games, and trivia. Cruise Director: Are very helpful and make it easy for everyday plan. Excursions: Something for everyone of any age and ability. Makes Great Memories. Enough time in port for excursions and shopping. Did the glass bottom ferry tour and it was awesome. Cool to see different fish, coral, ship wreck, and $3 Rum Swizzles. Beaches are beautiful and clear. Locals are very friendly and helpful. Lots of places to shop around. Did a jet ski tour out of Somerset Bridge Water Sports 441-236-7758. Had an awesome time. Harry Patchett was our tour guide. Was really nice and made the tour fun. Was lot of fun doing 45mph on the water. Bermuda: Lots of things to do and enjoy. If you are looking for a taxi then Shaun, P. Tucker is your guy. Was awesome and very informative. Took us to the beach we wanted to see, but there wasn't much there. Shaun told us he will take us to an awesome beach. We drove around half the island. he told us about the history. Dropped us of at clear water beach. We spent 3-4hrs there. He came back later and picked us up. Was a great guy. Tucker's Taxi Service Cell:441-336-9674 or email: shaunp@logic.bm Trip was very relaxing for sure. No worries at all. No cooking, no cleaning, no kids, drinks available everywhere..."get the booze package" you're welcome. Overall had an amazing experience especially for being a first timer. There are lots of things to do and explore. Lots of restaurants with lots of variety. Had a great company and made some new friends. Will book again for sure. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
One person in our party was offered a cruise from the casino we took the offer and upgraded. Spoiled ourselves on the 1st cruise experience with a Family Suite with balcony. The Boston to Bermuda cruise had lots to do, or you could do ... Read More
One person in our party was offered a cruise from the casino we took the offer and upgraded. Spoiled ourselves on the 1st cruise experience with a Family Suite with balcony. The Boston to Bermuda cruise had lots to do, or you could do nothing. Restaurant service was good and everyone was friendly. The food was good and plenty. The morning and lunch crew at Cagneys were super friendly and easy going. The ship floor plan was somewhat confusing, mostly aft, and took a bit to get acquainted. Enjoyed walks around deck 7. Utilized the free gym (some classes were for a fee) and thermal spa package. Somewhat disappointed that the hot tubs didn't have real jets to work on my back. I was the only one with a smartphone and utilized iconcierge on my phone (their free onboard app) which came in handy to see activities for the next few days, nothing from menus though so I took photos of those. Entertainment all round was great. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We've cruised a few times but so far this is our new favourite. The only reason I gave 4 stars was because of the location of the casino, it was right smack in the middle of Deck 7 where all guests including children passed by, so you ... Read More
We've cruised a few times but so far this is our new favourite. The only reason I gave 4 stars was because of the location of the casino, it was right smack in the middle of Deck 7 where all guests including children passed by, so you inhaled the smoke and all, but I guess it had a strategic location and purpose by NCL. The shows were good especially Cirque Dreams, vocalist Karl Loxkey and the female violinist. Food was tasty and had a variety of selection. There were themed nights at the Garden Cafe, and the Grilled Night was the best! The Prime Rib special of the day at O'Sheehans Is a must try, tender and mouth watering, cooked to perfection! The Indian themed lunch at Moderno's was very flavourful and tasted authentic! The cruise director, Dan Dan was my favourite of all. He was quick, witty, smart, hilarious and very generous and attentive! He even rendered a duet with Karl Loxley at the Matinee Farewell Show. He was such a great singer! His staff was amazing! The Matinee Farewell Show by the way is not to be missed! There was so much things to do and see for the family. Lots of free demonstrations and health seminars during the last sea day. Crew were attentive to guests' needs. There was also Lounge and cabins for single cruisers. Overall it was a cruise to remember! Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
First time on norwegian cruise lines, very impressed with food and entertainment! This was our 18th cruise and the food was better than any of our previous cruises, especially on the buffet, the variety was top notch. And if you’ve ever ... Read More
First time on norwegian cruise lines, very impressed with food and entertainment! This was our 18th cruise and the food was better than any of our previous cruises, especially on the buffet, the variety was top notch. And if you’ve ever heard someone joking about how cruise ship entertainment is bad, they were definately talking about another cruise line. It looks like norwegian spared no expense in providing excellent entertainment! Our favorite show was “the million dollar quartet”. And “burn the floor” was another favorite. Our stateroom was clean and well maintained, but our balcony was tiny, compared to any of our previous cruises. One other thing we noticed was how narrow the hallways to the staterooms were. When meeting someone going the other way, sometimes we-needed to stop and let them pass before going on. I’m not sure if all norwegian ships are laid out this way, but it took some getting used to. Otherwise a great cruise! Our favorite stop was harvest cay! It took norwegian 5 years to complete, and spend untold millions of dollars to develop. If you’re not impressed with harvest cay, nothing will impress you. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We had been on the Gem before and like it as it is a relatively small ship with a lot happening. This time however there were too many children for our liking. We have no objection to well behaved children but these seemed to have no ... Read More
We had been on the Gem before and like it as it is a relatively small ship with a lot happening. This time however there were too many children for our liking. We have no objection to well behaved children but these seemed to have no boundaries and the Garden Cafe looked more like a chimps tea party, there was food every where and parents just got up and left with their offspring still hanging on to more food than any adult could eat let alone a child, one incident saw a child exiting the Cafe with 5 boxes of cereal? The Washy washy lady could hardly keep her counsel. The Cafe was a place to stay away from unless very early, it was the proverbial bun fight. There seemed to be less staff on this cruise than the previous time I was on the Gem and the food slightly less scrumptious.The cleaning was very below par and I sat looking at a piece of melon and a squashed hash brown whilst several people stepped over them including staff and staff in white shirts. The toilets were often out of toilet paper and there was always toilet paper strewn over the floor. Round the bar I asked a crew member who was wearing beige uniform if he could remove some plates of left food that had been in situ for over 2 hours and 3 half full cups of cocktail and he told me it was not his job! When he strolled back pushing a trolley with coffee urns on I asked him to move them again. He did he put the whole lot plates and all in the bin!!! On the white party night myself and my new husband were out having a cigarette and under the stair well outside the Spinnaker and alongside the Bali Hai Bar where a huge number of black bin liners filled with rubbish spewing out a noxious liquid all over the deck. I have the photos if anyone from NCL is interested. Our cabin 5568 was bijou but perfectly adequate and very well looked after by Sulin. The entertainment was ok but the comedian needs to update his gig as he told the same jokes he told 18 months earlier when we were on this ship and it is not funny twice. The music through the decades was excellent as is the Theatre. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
It was an easy access for us out of Boston and the service was very good. The entertainment excellent. We were able to enjoy wonderful food in the Venetian, and Le Bistro. The staff were very attentive. It was like a Resort on the ... Read More
It was an easy access for us out of Boston and the service was very good. The entertainment excellent. We were able to enjoy wonderful food in the Venetian, and Le Bistro. The staff were very attentive. It was like a Resort on the water. This was a very reasonable trip. I would say cost of things such as bingo cards very excessive $39++. I would suggest that although there was sufficient signage I believe much of our time was spent finding our way around. Having more diagrams of the ship from “you are here” and a large diagram of the ship in our room would have been extremely helpful. I would like to see more formal dining experiences offered..a very dresss up night. The dance floor/area concisited of moving between tables on carpeted floor in the Atrium area. Seating in the Atrium very limited on the main floor. There was only about 20 little tables and seating limited. During several shows one had to sit in metal folding chairs. The pool area and available lounge chairs very generous. The pool was not heated and the weather fair so a heated pool would be a big advantage during the early summer sails. We were never offered drinks by the pool as on other ships. We saw very few wait staff offering beverages. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
My wife and I have always wanted to visit Ireland, Scotland and re-visit England. The Jade cruise stopped at several of the ports we wanted to see. While the overall experience was very, very enjoyable, the cruise was perhaps two-days ... Read More
My wife and I have always wanted to visit Ireland, Scotland and re-visit England. The Jade cruise stopped at several of the ports we wanted to see. While the overall experience was very, very enjoyable, the cruise was perhaps two-days too long. At the 12-day duration, perhaps spending two days in Dublin and Glasgow would have been more enjoyable than some of the smaller ports of call. The shore excursions were good; however, several of the options were too long in duration. I would have liked more guided tour options rather than just shuttle service from the ship to town. Also, the ramps on and off the ship were, at times, difficult for anyone with mobility issues. Additionally, the staging in the auditorim to begin the tours was, again at times, confusing and delayed. The entertainment was professional, but could have been a little more varied musical stylings. Again, the cruise was very enjoyable; the service was excellent; and, the premium restaurants were wonderful. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
This was our first time on NCL, previous cruises were of the shorter variety to Bahamas over a long weekend. End of April seemed to be a good time if you would like to see less kids aboard as it is pass spring break time but before school ... Read More
This was our first time on NCL, previous cruises were of the shorter variety to Bahamas over a long weekend. End of April seemed to be a good time if you would like to see less kids aboard as it is pass spring break time but before school lets out. This was one of our concerns as we saw a lot of kids on the shorter cruises (ie cheaper). The entertainment was excellent. We paid for 2 dinner/show combinations the Wine Lover's Musical and the Dream and Steam. Truly entertaining and well worth the extra $$. We attend the dualing pianos and the grand finale show, both were very good. The staff in the bars and restaurants are excellent. Spice H20 the adult deck was truly adults only, but it is too bad they rarely had music during the day or early evening, just scenes on the jumbo tron monitor. At Spice is where they had any late night parties but we did not go to any of these. Harvest Caye was disappointing to us, felt it was overpriced on the drinks, but it is a cheap beach day if that is what you are looking for. Excursions were booked independent of the cruise line and we thought they were a pretty good value. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
Ship: Big ship and beautiful. Inaugurated in 2016 so has all the new technology. They have tried to cramp too many people making some spaces smaller than other ships. Cabin Smaller than some of the other ships I have been on but ... Read More
Ship: Big ship and beautiful. Inaugurated in 2016 so has all the new technology. They have tried to cramp too many people making some spaces smaller than other ships. Cabin Smaller than some of the other ships I have been on but it was still good size. We were 4 in our cabin and we had no issue with space. The bathroom is good size. Dinning We just used the complimentary dining option and they all were great. Variety of options to choose from and it tasted great. Also do try O'Shehaan Bar & Grill, its open 24 hours but selection is little limited during odd hours. Entertainment and Activities Stage entertainment and some of the games shows done by cruise staff are not that great as compared to some other ships I have been on. They do have lot of other activities that you can enjoy. Zip line and Water slides are a hit. Service Our Room Steward and Dining staff was awesome but we did see on general they not as warm and miss that personal touch you get on some other ship. While in Manhattan Dinning room, the Maitree' D will stop by to ask if everything is okay but will not wait for us to hear our reply before moving on to next table. Ports Bermuda is a beautiful place to visit. Nice clean beaches and helpful locals. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
This was my seventh cruise with NCL since 2004 and my fifth as a solo cruiser. Having previously cruised on the Dream, Dawn, Gem, and Breakaway I was aware of NCL's freestyle cruising, culture, and had my own set of expectations. ... Read More
This was my seventh cruise with NCL since 2004 and my fifth as a solo cruiser. Having previously cruised on the Dream, Dawn, Gem, and Breakaway I was aware of NCL's freestyle cruising, culture, and had my own set of expectations. Getting to the port: For those of us who take public transportation arriving at the port is not difficult. Metro-North and LIRR deliver you to Grand Central or Penn Station from there you can either hoof it - which I did on the way home or you can catch a cab which I did on the way there. To keep your cab ride short and inexpensive have the driver drop you off at street level across the street and not have him or her drive up to Pier 88. If you choose to drive and to park at the pier expect to pay a premium for parking and allow extra time. Driving in NYC is not for the faint of heart. Embarkation: What a lovely experience compared to the Gem from NYC and the Breakaway from NYC. It was fast and organized, I was on the ship within 60 minutes of arriving at the port. The longshoremen will take your luggage, make sure you have printed out your luggage tags and affixed them before you hand over your bags. It's also customary to give them a cash tip. For me, it was $3 for one bag. Ship: to say that the Escape is a huge ship is not giving it credit. It is an immense ship. Over seven days I walked 39.6 miles - the vast majority of which were aboard the Escape. If you are not a cabin dweller the vast majority of your time will be spent on decks 6-8 which house the restaurants, shopping, theaters, casino, Skyline club, District Brewhouse, and bars. Decks 9-15 are all cabins with the exception of 11 which has the studio lounge and 13 which has the medical center. Decks 16-20 are the spa, fitness center, sun decks, pools, bars, buffet, the Haven, Margaritaville, slides, ropes course, Vibe beach club, arcade, and H2O. My suggestion to you is a month before you go spend an hour a day on the treadmill and stairclimber, your thighs will thank me. There are 16 passenger elevators on the Escape. The forward elevators are in two banks of four. If you want to go up you should press both sets of up buttons. The aft elevators are one bank of eight. You only need to press one up button. 16 elevators sound like a lot. When you consider there are 4266 passengers aboard the ship when full there is one elevator for 266 people. Bear in mind there are those who are disabled, on scooters, those who need to stop at every floor, people who take the elevators down, floods of people on day 1 embarking with their luggage, floods of people on day 7 disembarking with their luggage, crowds when the shows get out, crowds when the ship ports and departs. A recommendation would be to limit your elevator time and take the stairs, it will save you stress and will help you work off the calories. Cabin: your cabin is appointed with at least 3 - (in the studio's case 4) outlets. However, they will only work if your key card is in the slot that turns the lights on. It is best to charge your devices at night while you are in the room with them. NCL states that the cabin stewards will unplug devices when you are not in the room. I'm not sure what the point of that is, because if you are not in the room the devices will not charge. If you have never cruised before the cabins are very small. The beds are quite comfortable. Smoking: Not that any of us should be smoking. I imagine the Escape being difficult for smokers in the winter. While in port in NYC the only open smoking area was the interior cigar room. It was horrible. When out of port the smoking areas are only outside, uncovered, at Spice H20 on deck 17 aft and Waves at deck 17 midship. If the weather is nice, this is not a problem. On the Breakaway, there was a smoking section on deck 8 on the waterfront and on the Gem deck 7 which were both covered. You can only smoke in the casino when the casino is open and you are playing. Studio lounge: unlike the Breakway the Escape has three floors of studio cabins midship on decks 10-12. Thank you NCL! The Studio lounge is beautiful with digital screens, comfortable seating, modern design, the worlds best complimentary espresso cappuccino machine, water, juice, a pay per glass wine bar and amazing staff. Our solo coordinator Claudius organized dinners and meetups and made the solo cruising experience an unforgettable one. Spa: The spa has become one of my main reasons for sailing with NCL. If you like to relax in a hot tub or on a lounger and want to do so in peace, I highly recommend buying the thermal spa weekly pass. Before you cruise call your travel agent or NCL and have them add it. Imagine sharing loungers, pools and hot tubs with 4000 people then imagine sharing them with 100 people. The cost is at least 20% cheaper if you book before you go. The week pass was approximately $200 if booked before the cruise and $248 on the first day of the cruise. Let me tell you about my favorite place on this ship - eucalyptus steam room, sauna, sanarium, dry salt bath, snow room, hot tub, thermal pool, rain showers, mosaic tile loungers, bathrobes, infused water, fresh fruit... this is what relaxation is meant to be. I will never cruise without access to the spa. Granted you do have to avoid the spa salespeople who are trying to give you acupuncture, teeth whitening, hot towel shaves, massages, scrubs, manicures and pedicures... if you have mastered the NY leave me alone face you will be fine. Don't make eye contact, smile or ask questions, they will latch onto you like harpies. Internet: I purchased the no limit package without video streaming. It was approximately $200 for the seven days. For me this was worth it as my work and finances never sleep. Whatsapp allowed for perfect VOIP video calling and all my finance apps worked without a hitch just like I was at home. Cruise Next - yes, I did it. Within the next four years I expect to be cruising a few times with NCL. I purchased two $250 Cruise Next deposits for a total of $250.00. I almost did not purchase the certificates on this cruise because I was given incorrect information. NCL wooed me with the inexpensive deposits so I had booked two future cruises prior to setting foot on the Escape. My question was - could I use these cruise next deposits towards my already booked cruises? The lady at the desk said no. She stated I could cancel my booked cruises and rebook them. I asked her if I would lose my deposits, she stated that since I was within 180 days of my next cruise - and that was when final payment was due - that I would lose my deposit. I was not satisfied with those answers. So... while I was on the Escape I called NCL. I was told that yes I can use the cruise next credits towards the cruises I had already booked, that I could cancel the other cruises if I wanted to as I had booked them a long time ago and that my final payment was not due until 90 days before the embarkation date. I later learned that the new NCL rule is that you will lose your deposit if you cancel the cruise within 120 days of the embarkation date. This information was confirmed when I returned home and see in my NCL account that the cruise next deposits are there and they can be applied as partial payment to the cruises I have already booked. Short story - if you're getting an answer you don't like or sounds incorrect, check with someone else. Restaurants: Savor, Taste, and Manhattan room - the menu is the same, the service is excellent. Savor and Taste are open for breakfast and lunch most days, check the Freestyle Daily. Take the opportunity to try the bizarre things on the menu. For example, the spinach pancakes with smoked salmon were amazing. They have cappuccino, espresso, and real coffee. If you are a solo or a couple, want to be seated quickly, offer to share a table, they will happily place you with other cruisers. You may meet your next Facebook friend, I did! Garden Buffet - meh. I'm not a fan but there is always something you will find that is edible and it is almost always open. The coffee is horrible if you are from the tri-state area. Continental style begins at 6 am and hot food at 6:30 am. You may run into a few folks who have yet to find their cabins after a night of partying. O-Sheehan's - limited menu, but everything on it they do it well. Fantastic place for wings and beer, Irish coffee, sandwiches, salads, fries, and burgers. This is the 3-6am spot for those who can't sleep after a late night at Skyline. One of the complaints I heard from another solo cruiser was that the late-late night food and entertainment on NCL was not as good as Carnival. NCL doesn't cater to those who don't sleep. Margaritaville - If you like it or hate it on land your experience will be the same on board. The place is only open from 12pm to 5pm. The nachos are huge, enough for six people. The margaritas are awesome. The surcharge is $14.95. I had conch fritters and fish tacos, both were decent. Bayamo - Expensive but worth it. $39.99 for the seafood feast which includes king crab legs - which are amazing, lobster tail, clams, muscles. MMMMM District Brew House - not bad beer and hard cider, sports on TV. We didn't eat here. Food Republic - This was the sleeper surprise of the trip - excellent food, service, bizarre pairings like pastrami dumplings! Their drinks were fabulous. Clubs: Spice H2O is the outdoor venue which is lovely, it has movies and parties. Skyline which is next to the casino holds the after-hours parties with live music and DJs. Unlike the Breakway this is not an enclosed club, it is open to the casino which makes it seem less club like. Active: Yoga class was fabulous. Ropes course with "walk the plank" and the zip line is excellent, however, the cameras were not working and the upper deck was not open due to high winds. Slides were excellent. You cannot have anything in your pockets or on your person (except for your room key) when you are going on the slides or on the ropes course. Drinks: The black glass wine tasting event with the Sommelier from Columbia was amazing. He is by far the most candid, demonstrative, informative Somm I have ever met. While on this topic let's discuss the drink package - it is 'included' as a perk with your cruise, however, you have to pay the gratuities and taxes if you chose this perk. If you are not a drinker do not pick this perk. You will get far more value out of the restaurant package. Sugarcane Mojito Bar: amazing - make sure you stop here. Fantastic drinks and service. Tobacco Road bar: there was a bartender with the last name Venezula - it was like watching an artist make a drink. Bermuda: This was my fourth trip to Bermuda - I'd be willing to go every year for the remainder of my life if I could. It is difficult to believe that so much beauty exists in the world in one place. Do not be afraid of the public transportation, buses and ferries. Everyone speaks English, they are all friendly, the people of Bermuda want you there spending your money and having a great time. You do not need to book the ship's shore excursions, a two-minute internet search will guide you. Places to not be missed in Bermuda include Horseshoe Bay beach, St.George's Tobacco Bay, Crystal Caves, and 'discover scuba' at snorkel bay if you are not a certified diver. If you are a certified diver make sure to do a wreck dive. Hamilton is lovely for a walk and shopping. NCL offers a free ferry from Kings Wharf to St. George's... you get what you pay for. The public ferry takes approximately 30 minutes. The NCL ferry puts along and takes at least an hour - or more. Disembarkation: If you can walk off with your luggage this is your best bet. The day before disembarkation you will pick up your luggage tags from deck 6 service desk. If they do not have the color for the earliest group wait in line to get it. The earlier you get through the faster you will get through customs. The Escape requires that you wait on Deck 8 or 6 before you are called to go to deck 7 to exit. From there you will weave your way throughout deck seven in a creative maze of chairs through restaurants and public areas. Overall - the vacation was amazing. I'm not trilled with the mega ship experience but I will be on the Escape again in September and January. I'm looking forward to the Bliss in NYC. If I had to take a first time cruiser on a ship it would not be this one. I would take them on a smaller ship such as the Gem, Dawn or Jewel as the mega ships are overwhelming. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We chose this cruise because we wanted to do Hawaii and see all islands without flying to each island and losing time. Loved the entertainment and especially the shore excursions we experienced. We got to see which islands we’d like to ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to do Hawaii and see all islands without flying to each island and losing time. Loved the entertainment and especially the shore excursions we experienced. We got to see which islands we’d like to visit again! Food onboard average had better on other cruise lines but we were there to visit islands not for food. The only negative I would say is that they should communicate better with shore excursions in that you could do part of excursion ; for example my husband didn’t want to do helicopter tour but he could’ve done kuai sight seeing tour which was fantastic with Doeme from heaven and earth quest . Loved Oahu, Kona, and Maui! If you want to see Hawaii once in lifetime trip this is the best way to do it. We did land and cruise which was exceptional . A lot to see and reasonable for price with food mostly included. You had to pay for food on land portion. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
I choose this cruise for the itinerary. Next time I might choose based on the ship itself reviews. NCL Spirit provided everything as a cruise ship does but it lacks the bells and whistles. It is dated and you can see the age, the decor ... Read More
I choose this cruise for the itinerary. Next time I might choose based on the ship itself reviews. NCL Spirit provided everything as a cruise ship does but it lacks the bells and whistles. It is dated and you can see the age, the decor is lacking. Buckles in the carpet, general wear and tear through out the ship. Our cabin room was musty, I lost my voice due to the dampness. The shower needed recaulking. The staff and crew were friendly and great! Cruise director was great, Encore was great! All the shows were great! I'd consider it again if the itinerary was perfect once more! The dining food flavors seem to run all together eventually. The desserts were never anything special. Pound cake/brownies made into 10 different desserts. Unless dancing or shows, there didnt seem to be alot of crowd participation. All in all, it was a good and memorable cruise. I do not feel anything was wasted or have any regrets. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
My parents were doing the trans-atlantic cruise and continuing on with the Western Med 7 day cruise from Barcelona. I decided to meet them in Barcelona and join them on the last leg of their cruise. I did the cruise pretty much as they ... Read More
My parents were doing the trans-atlantic cruise and continuing on with the Western Med 7 day cruise from Barcelona. I decided to meet them in Barcelona and join them on the last leg of their cruise. I did the cruise pretty much as they like. We did crosswords and soduko each day, tours arranged through the cruise company and ate at the speciality restaurants almost every night. I did embarkation without them. I got a transfer to the port with a private company. It was easy. The driver asked me which dock - but it was pretty easy to see from the roadway where we had to go. There was a massive line snaking around the building outside. I got out and got in the line across the parking lot. It was not till I got to the front that I found out it was just the line for dropping your bags off... I was walking in with my bag since my parent's already had their cabin and I didn't need to wait until 'the cabins were ready'. It was not clear what line was for what. I then joined the massive line in the sun to get in to the building. :( It took quite a while but it was quicker than I expected. I went through security then over to the check in lines. I got my key card and signed in and left my credit card. I expected to have my picture taken and go to the big waiting room like in Miami but after checking in, you just walked right onto the ship. I had expected and dreaded the stupid 'bathroom' setup of the cabin. It was every bit as bad as expected. We managed. The little curtain between the 'bathroom' area and the 'bedroom' gave a tiny bit of privacy. I would usually go there to change. But sound carried. Enough said. I was on the couch which really wasn't that uncomfortable. It was a harder mattress but my back has been hurting lately and it actually did not hurt as much as it had been at home. The storage was very good. My parents had way over packed and there was still tons of room for me coming in. We toured around the ship. The only other ship I had been on was the Getaway (2 times) so I was comparing and contrasting. I liked the layout of the common areas / restaurants better than on the Getaway. It seemed more open and to work better somehow. I really liked the photo area - much easier to get around in it. The pool area was much nicer than the Getaway. It seemed bigger. I geuss its becuase they do not have the ropes course. Would have liked to have tried it again. The climbing wall was much bigger and I did enjoy doing that. There were two outdoor 'buffet' areas which was nice - although we didn't really use them. I think we only ate at the buffet once and that was for lunch. There are tons of options for foods. The gym was much bigger than the Getaway. I didn't use it though since I was with my parents but we did go and look around and look at the classes. Yoga generally runs $12 and spinning and TRX around 25. They did have an option for an all inclusive pass that looked a really good deal considering for 69. Will attach the photo of the flyer if I can. My parent's had a spa pass during the crossing. They found the spa on the Getaway much nicer. We didn't get a pass for our trip since there were so many port days and we would be doing tours. I did go one day in to the spa to get my nails done. It was nice but I was not wowed. Could have been the lady I had - she just rubbed me the wrong way. That night we ate at Cagney's. It was good as always but I am not as wowed as I would have liked. The next day was our only sea day. We did more exploring, got crosswords and soduko from the library and maybe napped a bit ;) We did the Cirque show that night. It was phenomenal. The food was good but the show was just jaw dropping. I thought it was well worth the money. You are put at tables with several others that face like spokes to the centre where the show happens. They mostly perform at a higher level so I think that any seat would be good. We had great conversation with our table mates even though we are all pretty shy. We had tours booked all the other days. I will review them under the individual ports. All were great. I am not as big of fan of tours as my parents but it was their cruise. First off, you have to go sit in a room where the guy up front calls tours. People don't listen and they go up to the front to ask him time and time again what to do. Very annoying. I think this could be managed better - perhaps maybe with better explanations right from when you get your tickets to the tour. That was actually one of my big frustrations - the tour overview on the website gives you very little information about what the tour will actually be like. How long will you be driving, in what sort of bus, how much time will you spend where... I did not go with them to Florence becuase I could not face the thought of spending 2 hours on a bus. I explored Livorno instead and I think that was the best decision I made the whole trip. Livorno was just lovely and I didn't have to sit on a bus for an hour and have some tour guide drone on about this and that. We cancelled our trip to Monaco and Monte Carlo. My Dad was not feeling well so my Mom and I explored on our own. So glad we did as I again enjoyed the freedom of exploring on our own. During the rest of week we ate at: Shanghai's (great service - food was good - but I am from a small town with Americanized Chinese food so anything other than chicken balls is great to me). The Manhattan Room - food was good. The Burn the Floor cast did a show in the middle but I swear the sight lines are terrible from everywhere with those great big pillars so it is more an exercise of frustration trying to watch them. Teppenyaki - our chef was fabulous and he entertained us all dinner. The food was very good too. Not healthy with the amount of butter he used - but very tasty La Cucina - This restaurant is in a very weird location. You go through the buffet to the back and then down the stairs. The views are great from almost every table I could see. I was very annoyed here however. This couple with their baby arrived just before us. They were taken to their table. They came stomping back and said 'there is no way this is happening, we will not sit there...' and on and on and on. The hostess came back for them and they headed back. They had a table right by the window. We were seated afterwards in what was to have been their table. Still a fab view but a bit away from the window. The manager came over and sucked up to them. It was sickening to see. They got our table becuase they were rude and demanding. It spoiled my dinner a bit but I suppose we could have kicked up the same fuss as they had. I ordered chicken here. Not my best choice as it was weird. I should have ordered pasta. Le Bistro - my parent's favourite restaurant. I am not as big of fan of french food. But it was very good. O'Sheehans - we ate breakfast here once and lunch a few times. Its not bad. The salad is meh but the burgers are good. The express breakfast is great and comes super quick. Taste - we ate lunch here once and breakfast a couple of times. Its pretty standard Room Service - we ordered the 'free' breakfast several mornings and it worked well for us to get up and out for our early tours. During the week we did not see a lot of shows since we were so tired from touring all day. We did see Priscilla which was very funny. Really enjoyed it. I did not see Burn the Floor becuase I had seen it twice on the Getaway. I wish we had time to see it as my Mom said that it was different (they had seen it on the crossing). So maybe next time. We mostly sat in a quieter area of one of the bars and chatted. One night we ended up in the Bliss lounge when there was ballroom dancing. That was fun to watch. Then there was Kareoke and that was surprisingly good. We also saw a high school group perform. They too were surprisingly good. Be will to do something like that on the spur of the moment and you might be surprised and enjoy yourself. I did the climbing wall 3 times. Its a good wall and I enjoyed that. I know there were many, many other options that we didn't even get to. Live music, Comedians, Howl at the Moon, etc. So much to do! So little time! Disembarkation - my parents had a fairly early flight so we were out bright and early. They set out their bags on the evening before and I walked mine off. It was pretty well organized except when we went over to the buses for the transport to the airport. Everyone panics and wants on the first bus. Holy cow, if everyone would just relax and wait and listen (my dad included), things would work much more smoothly. There were tons of buses there and no one was going to be left behind. One of the frustrating things was the stupid iConcierge app. The account review had things that were not right in it. Several times we didn't understand something, only to go up to the desk (wait in line) and get a printout which was correct. So why can the account review in the app not be correct? The other information in it is so superficial as to be pretty unhelpful. It would be nice to see your reservations and to have a bit more information. The ocean and weather were super cooperative. We had AMAZING sunny weather the whole trip with almost flat seas. I geuss I cannot thank NCL for that though ;) Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
This was our first time on the new "Norwegian Dawn" since the "refurb"-so have nothing to compare from before.We loved it very much.Found it to be very colorful,very friendly easy to manoeuver around once we found our ... Read More
This was our first time on the new "Norwegian Dawn" since the "refurb"-so have nothing to compare from before.We loved it very much.Found it to be very colorful,very friendly easy to manoeuver around once we found our bearings.We always take the first day to go around all the areas of our likes before settling down on any one area.The casino was great had a lot of more modern machines and the service was excellent for us.My husband is a good tipper so we are always treated well.It didn't hurt that we also had very good luck as well..The entertainment in the theatre both venues were first rate.There had been a standing ovation for both shows.Food and drink are always good on Norwegian since we have the "UBP"it is much easier now at the bars.We tried the "Sunset" boat excursions around the Hamilton Coastline,they too were first rate.Those rum cruises are not chinzy at all.Alot of fun and kept the mood going..Even though the weather was very cool,maybe 65-68 degrees at night,that didn't dampen our spirits at all.We loved Bermuda and maybe thinking of returning at an other time to go to the other side of the island to see St.Georges,we hear that's quite a nice place as well. The music and bartenders in the Atrium were also great and always in a good mood. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We wanted to experience what it felt like in post-Castro Cuba. Only a day and a half's visit was offered, but it was enough time for nice sampling. All in all, it was a tremendous experience. Our 6 day journey on The Sky was good, ... Read More
We wanted to experience what it felt like in post-Castro Cuba. Only a day and a half's visit was offered, but it was enough time for nice sampling. All in all, it was a tremendous experience. Our 6 day journey on The Sky was good, pretty much what we expected from a 19 year old ship; not luxurious, but certainly comfortable. However internet response is horrible; not available in room, barely serviceable in public areas. The Sky held a moderate sized passenger load, around 2000 people. Approximately 80% of them apparently tried disembark simultaneously, so there was a looong line to get off, and check through the security points. The agents were so flustered, that my wife and I accidentally swapped passports, and this wasn't noticed (or reacted to). Apparently visiting this country is still dicey, in terms of visa regulations. It was not simply a hop on/hop off affair; as American citizens, we had to declare which of around a dozen reasons described our intentions when visiting before a visa could be issued. (we chose inter culture education). Norwegian made it easy, for a price ($75 a piece), and we had ours in hand the first day. They were bundled with an excursion, so any proof of compliance will be supplied by Norwegian (otherwise, folk were warned to hold documentation and receipts for five years). Strangely enough on the second day, we longer needed any visa to hop off the ship and explore on our own. BTW you MUST exchange American dollars for the tourist currency, CUCs, since credit cards are NOT accepted. (we found several tour friends were able to use American dollars, contrary to warnings). I'll go into excursion details later, but we wanted a sampling of sights, so got the 3.5 hour bus tour of the high points, with commentary. Unfortunately it was inexplicably cut short by over 1.5 hours. (Norwegian reembursed us a token amount when we complained). After the tour, we found a great open air restaurant with amazing food, and live entertainment. A magnificent way to sample the culture. We walked around Old Havana, soaking up the culture and architecture, and ended up in a massive crafts market about .5 mile from the ship. Brought home some token souvenirs, some rum, and a few cigars. Perceptions- the people seemed to have a happy, resigned aura around them; despite food, supply and medical shortages, they were resolved to live a positive life. no begging per se, but more of a simple, polite asking- Candy for my children? Cookies? Toilet Paper (yes, TP ! severe shortage, we were told to BRING OUR OWN). At least we were able to make some family happy with a donated roll of TP. There was only a sparse police presence, and word was, there really is no street crime in Old Havana. They are just starting to become tourist-centric, so its not like visiting a Caribbean party island; there is simply a scarcity of everyday necessities, and not a lot of folk can afford to start up a business. (one enterprising guy posed as Fidel for pictures!). However the restaurants and bars we visited were very satisfying. And live music every where! I was surreptitiously approached several times with offers for cigars. It almost seemed likeit was not legal (I'll have to look it up). Even in the Crafts Market, the cigars were hidden out of sight, not like the rum/cigar stores we visited. There was some talk onboard that the 'black market' cigars may have had insect eggs in them, but after a few days in a plastic bag, I haven't found any. ??? Best part was the morning-before-departure self-guided tour we took to catch up on sights we missed the previous day. Any number of tour books can help you with the highlights. This is city you can best appreciate by walking and interacting. (Though some friends bought and enjoyed a one hour informal 'tour' in a 57 Chevy convertible provided by some locals for $40). Norwegian provided an 'excursion' in Miami when we returned- they stowed our luggage, gave us tickets to a HOHO bus tour, then a shuttle to the airport. A good, convenient way to end the cruise if you have a late flight. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
A relaxing and economical means of transportation to England and Ireland where we stayed for two weeks after the cruise. The food at the buffet was typical but we ate twice each at the French and Italian specialty dining and twice at ... Read More
A relaxing and economical means of transportation to England and Ireland where we stayed for two weeks after the cruise. The food at the buffet was typical but we ate twice each at the French and Italian specialty dining and twice at the Irish pub and all were excellent. Service was consistently good throughout all venues and the Burn the Floor dancers were absolutely superb. One huge negative came when we discovered that the late night entertainment two decks above our aft facing cabin made sleep impossible before midnight due the heavy thumping of the bass from the DJ that we not only heard but that actually vibrated our bed. After multiple requests to reduce the thumping bass we were eventually offered a different and much smaller cabin which we grudgingly accepted. To compensate for the inferior room we were give free access to the Thermal Spa which could only use one time due to a lack of seating. Our only other negatives were the cancellation of the Broadway musical and the absolutely horrible handling of the shore excursions -- long and even longer lines getting on or off for excursions and no attempt to fix the problems created by the poor procedures employed to manage the process on board and upon our return to the ship. In addition, on the tour of the "D Day Beaches," we were not able to view the museum, due to the large number of people all scheduled to be there at the same time. This may have been the tour company's issue, however staggered scheduling would have assisted with the issue. We were very disappointment. We spent a great share of the day asking other bus passengers what time and where we were supposed to be (they did not know either), as the tour guide was not good at specifics. One thing of great importance was the "release" of passengers to go to the buses when a shore excursion was ready to go. We found ourselves "trapped" in the emergency exit hallway. People in front of us could not go forward because of the congestion on the stairs and more and more people were released to go into the exit hallway. It was a dangerous situation. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We had a great time. You cannot beat the price for what you get. The specialty restaurants were great, the shows were great and the staff was great. Only a few negatives: Most excursions that we wanted were sold out so book early. There ... Read More
We had a great time. You cannot beat the price for what you get. The specialty restaurants were great, the shows were great and the staff was great. Only a few negatives: Most excursions that we wanted were sold out so book early. There was not a make up artist on the ship. I like to get dressed up and have nice professional pictures taken so that was disappointing to me. The main dining café was average but the specialty restaurants that we went to were excellent especially the Japanese one. The staff was very attentive. We went to the Tropicana Room which is complimentary for dining one evening but my boyfriend was a little sea sick and we had to leave. The waitress actually had the food sent to our room, which was very nice and my boyfriend felt better after he ate. Ocean Blue had yummy lobster rolls. The Cirque show was awesome. Our favorite spots were Costa Maya and Cozumel. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
My husband and I took our honeymoon on the Breakaway the week of April 8th. We are from the Boston area, and have gone on the Dawn prior to the Breakaway. We love NCL because of the Freestyle aspects of cruising. Getting on the ship ... Read More
My husband and I took our honeymoon on the Breakaway the week of April 8th. We are from the Boston area, and have gone on the Dawn prior to the Breakaway. We love NCL because of the Freestyle aspects of cruising. Getting on the ship was simple. We boarded very shortly after arriving to the terminal. Our room was even ready! Being on the balcony as we passed the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island was an amazing experience. The best thing that two Newlyweds could have done was purchase the Thermal Spa package. We used this 5/7 days on board! The Therapy pool was my favorite. The Salt Room was my husband's favorite. While at Sea, there was lots to do. We enjoyed the game shows, especially the Newlywed/Not So Newlywed game show. (We might have won... :-D) Karaoke was our jam! Fat Cats was a great spot, located outside of Maltings Whiskey Bar. The Highway Stars Band was a great 70's/ 80's cover band! They had sets before karaoke every night. We did wish that they had more people perform at the Karaoke Star show on the last day and that there was more selection from Bandaoke. Headliners had great comedians all week! Stay late for the adult show. It is well worth your time. Bars on board were wonderful. We had the drink package, which was well worth every penny. We loved Maltings the most. The Ice Bar was a $20 upcharge, which was a little disappointing at first, but well worth the extra cost. I hope they expand this and make this bigger eventually. Food was great in the Specialty restaurants. We had a 3 dinner Specialty dining package. I had the best steak in La Cucina. We were planning on going to Moderno, but ended up back at La Cucina. Teppanyaki was so much fun! For breakfast, I enjoyed the buffet. It tends to get VERY busy on days you are in ports. Lunch was...eh...okay. Not a lot of variety. O'Sheehans was great for a quick bite. Get the Spinach Artichoke Dip and the Jamaican Jerk Wings. While in Port Canaveral, we went to Kennedy Space Center. This was an AMAZING experience! We didn't even care that it was pouring! Nassau...we loved this excursion! We went to Blue Lagoon Island for the Dolphin Encounter. Our dolphin, Sal, was a delight! Go to Blue Lagoon! You will not regret this! The ferry to Blue Lagoon was more like a tour. We saw all the celebrity homes and the actual island used in the Gilligan's Island photographs. Okay...now for the not so great things... In general, we received better service on the Dawn. Many of the staff just walked away from us, or didn't respond to you. This was not what we were used to from NCL coming off of the Dawn. The private island...least favorite port. The tender boat was an experience. Hold on tight! The beach itself is pretty. Don't plan on swimming. There are HUGE jagged rocks throughout the beach, which made it impossible to swim. Food was eh. Drinks were great! We ate at all 3 of the main dining rooms- The Manhattan Room, Taste, and Savor. Having to make dinner reservations in the Main dining rooms got to be a bit much at times. The service was very slow, and the food was mediocre. Do not get the Linguine and Clams...watery and flavorless. The biggest dining fubar was Margaritaville. We got there when they finally opened. They only open on Sea days with good weather. The staff seemed scatterbrained and disorganized. Now, being at this establishment, you are more than likely to order...a Margarita! My husband and I each ordered one with an appetizer. The apps come. Still no drinks. We reminded our waitress twice and another waitstaff...no drinks. 25 minutes later, we receive our drinks. My Watermelon Margarita was inedible. Very poorly made. My husband's Top Shelf Margarita was decent. My turkey burger was borderline cold, with ingredients I asked to be removed. Do not waste your $15 cover charge. Disembarkation was a complete nightmare. We had Priority Disembarkation, which meant nothing. We stood in a line for 3 hours! No one was giving us any information. NCL was blaming US Customs, and US Customs was blaming NCL. The only reason we made our transportation back to Boston on time is because we used the Porter Service to get us through Customs. Well worth the $5. This process was enough for us to say we'd sail on a ship such as the Dawn, but never again on a ship such as the Breakaway. DanDan has an amazing voice! Listen to him sing! Overall, amazing honeymoon, but we were definitely spoiled on the Dawn. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
This was our 3rd ncl cruise. First on this ship. Overall the nicest ship we had been on and a good vacation, but there were some things we noticed them being more stringent on. 1. They used to offer lobster in the paid dining areas, this ... Read More
This was our 3rd ncl cruise. First on this ship. Overall the nicest ship we had been on and a good vacation, but there were some things we noticed them being more stringent on. 1. They used to offer lobster in the paid dining areas, this was no longer available. 2. Bingo has always been a scam, but they took it even further with higher costs and making it even harder to get a jackpot that I had already never seen anyone win. Used to be coverall in 49 numbers called, was now in 47 for some reason. 3. Casino minimum bets we're higher than other ships, not sure why but a lot of people that looked at the tables saw the minimums, complained, and then didn't play. Shows we're great, only 1 comedy show was a bummer tho. Getting onto the boat was a nightmare. Our arrival time was 930 until 10. We didn't get to board until after 1. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We are a couple on our late fifties that have cruised nine times previously. We have long looked forward to being able to choose cruises based on itinerary or price instead of choosing what is available during our time off. Since we are ... Read More
We are a couple on our late fifties that have cruised nine times previously. We have long looked forward to being able to choose cruises based on itinerary or price instead of choosing what is available during our time off. Since we are both now fully retired, this was our first time choosing a cruise without constraints. It was our first NCL cruise having cruised Royal Caribbean, Princess and Carnival on the past. We chose this itinerary due a very low teaser rate. Despite fees and taxes nearly doubling the quote, it was still a bargain. My mother and aunt decided to join us so we were a group of four all very pleased with our fare. We booked inside cabins on deck 12. Embarking in Port Canaveral was smooth. We had difficulty getting a commercial taxi from our pre-cruise hotel and ended up taking Lyft. No problems dropping us off right in front of the ship. We dropped our bags and headed in. Lines were moderate and moved quickly. In less than a half hour, we were through the process. We were very happy to find the sit down dining room, Taste, open for lunch. We read all the Epic reviews before we booked so we knew what to expect with the unusual cabin configuration. The cabin was fine for us and we probably wouldn't have even remarked on the arrangement of the commode, shower and sink. We found the sink small but had no issues with splashing into the room. The beds were comfortable and we had plenty of room for our luggage ( for the two week cruise, two weeks in Europe and two weeks cruising back). Most importantly, the air conditioning worked well. It was very comfortable and we enjoyed it for the entire cruise. Our cabin steward, Victorino, was fantastic. We found the food very good to excellent. The sit down breakfasts and lunches in the Taste dining room were very good and a nice pace of service on sea days. Dinners in Taste and The Manhattan dining room were usually excellent. We also had specialty dining in the Bistro, Moderno, Cucina and Cagney. I had steak at all of them and each was beautifully prepared. The skewered meats at Moderno were all very good, especially the beef tenderloin and lamb chops. Our only issue was with extremely slow service at Bistro. The manager on duty apologized several times and comped a bottle of wine. The meal was outstanding when it arrived. Normally, we are not buffet people and we have been on a number of cruises where we never set foot in one. One this transatlantic, we took a lot of breakfasts, lunches and even one dinner at the buffet. We found the offerings varied, hot, tasty and of good quality. Hand washing was enforced on entry ( albeit by a charming girl spraying and singing washy-washy). Once we figured out the booking procedure for shows, we were able to see what we wanted. The best show was Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. We also saw the Epic Beatles, a comic/magician, and Burn the Floor. Did not care for the last. The crew also put together a special show call Women who Rock which was excellent. We very much enjoyed the dueling piano bar as well as bar entertainers such as Zoe and Aldo. I played a lot of trivia and enjoyed it. Sometimes it was held in the Atrium where there is too much else going on and it is distracting and difficult to get a seat. Also attended a lecture series from the Brunel Museum in London. The professor's presentations were excellent but often oversubscribed and people had to stand. My wife purchased a fitness package with unlimited classes. She liked TRX, yoga and Pilates. We both did morning stretch before I went out to run on deck 7. The running track is usable but extremely inconvenient with just an up and back with a tight dog bone loop at each end. With so many sea days, there seemed to always be a crowd. Traffic bottlenecked frequently, especially when shows were letting in or out. Outdoor spaces were ice and well maintained but seemed lacking in comparison to the size of the ship. I tried all the water slides and loved them...lots of fun. The ship, despite its size, is quirky. Perhaps that is why she is in a class by herself. Externally, she is ugly. I've seen better looking container ships. The public areas are tight and outdoor areas limited. Still, the crew was ne of the best we have seen. The bartenders were great, especially Alan at Maltings,Kumasi at Shakers and Javier at the Atrium. All of the waitstaff at the food venues were also excellent. I also enjoyed speaking with the folks that were always sweeping, mopping, dusting or polishing everything. We loved the crossing and we're blessed with great weather and smooth seas. Except for rain in Bermuda and overcast in Malaga, we couldn't ask for better weather. We are already looking forward to our return transatlantic on Carnival Horizon in two weeks. Overall, we will sail NCL again ( we already put down two deposits). We would avoid the Epic unless it is once again a super value or a unique itinerary. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
My family of 4 (two kids 12 and 10) really enjoyed our Western Caribbean cruise on the Dawn. It was our first cruise. Pros: 1. The ship is in excellent condition, and service was excellent. Our mini-suite with balcony was perfect ... Read More
My family of 4 (two kids 12 and 10) really enjoyed our Western Caribbean cruise on the Dawn. It was our first cruise. Pros: 1. The ship is in excellent condition, and service was excellent. Our mini-suite with balcony was perfect for us. I particularly appreciated the design of the bathroom. Even though it's just one room, the toilet and shower can both be closed off from the sink area. 2. Food and drink. Speciality dining (Moderno, La Cucina and Cagney's) was excellent -- well above expectations. The buffet, especially once you learn what to avoid, was also excellent. We had the ultimate beverage package, and I was impressed with the quality of beer, wine and cocktails -- especially once I learned which bartenders really knew how to make a drink. 3. Entertainment. While the various lounge singers were pretty bad, the comedian (Tim Kaminski), the singing and dancing shows, the magician and the aerialists were all great. We really felt like we were getting something for our cruise dollars. 4. Roatan. While almost entirely propped up by tourism, Roatan is an authentic destination unlike Costa Maya and Harvest Caye. 5. Laid back, "freestyle" atmosphere. I simply would not take a cruise with assigned dining times and dress requirements beyond a collared shirt. Not my style. NCL fit our vibe perfectly. Cons: 1. Internet. We got the 250 minutes/1 gb package as a freebie, and it was mostly an exercise in frustration. Page loads take FOREVER. It's good only for quick email checks and texts. Forget anything with a photo or video. This wasn't such a big deal because I actually wanted to unplug; but when I did the handful of obligatory email and text checks, I wish it had been smooth. Even dial up model smooth would have been good enough. 2. The pool. It's small. And it was crowded and loud, but in fairness our cruise was an Easter/Spring Break cruise with almost 3000 guests, including more than 780 children. With crew, we were only 23 people short of the ship's max capacity of 4000. 3. NCL's own shore excursions are expensive. Like really expensive. We booked Chachchobben Mayan Ruins at Costa Maya through NCL and probably shouldn't have. In Roatan we went out on our own and saved a ton of money. 4. Onboard "active" activities are somewhat limited. The basketball court was almost always very busy. Other than than that, there are a couple ping pong tables, giant outdoor chess and some shuffle puck. Considering how crowded the pool is, all together there aren't enough active options for days at sea. I would choose NCL again, and I would probably choose the Dawn again too even though the onboard activities -- except for the entertainment -- were somewhat limited. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We had sailed on Royal Caribbean both times in the past and absolutely loved it- in particular the Oasis. We did upgrade to the Haven and that was fabulous. I'm not sure if we would have liked it as much, had we not upgraded. The ... Read More
We had sailed on Royal Caribbean both times in the past and absolutely loved it- in particular the Oasis. We did upgrade to the Haven and that was fabulous. I'm not sure if we would have liked it as much, had we not upgraded. The customer service in the Haven was excellent! I would do it again in a heartbeat. We ate breakfast in the Haven each morning- tried the general buffet once, but we were not impressed. The specialty restaurants were excellent - particularly the French Bistro. The Haven also had a private sun deck which we loved- it was only for adults so it was quiet and relaxing. We love the bigger boats with more options. We were not too fond of the smoke in the casino which was actually everywhere on that floor. Norwegian's private island was awesome- it was very clean and they put on a lovely lunch. Looking forward to trying out one of their other large boats sometime! Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Our cruise was great! Only downer was we went during spring break and there happened to be a senior trip on board too. Which is fine but, there were a lot of drunk 18 year olds that were not fun to dance near during the theme nights. I ... Read More
Our cruise was great! Only downer was we went during spring break and there happened to be a senior trip on board too. Which is fine but, there were a lot of drunk 18 year olds that were not fun to dance near during the theme nights. I wish there were more activities that target 30 year olds. There were a lot of activities but we never seemed to find anyone around our age range. Also, we went on the Dunn river falls with bamboo beach club excursion. It was a lot of fun except it just felt PACKED at the falls and very very rushed. We kept getting told to keep moving so we didn’t get an opportunity to really take any nice photos in front of the falls together. The service was outstanding and ship was always super clean and easy to navigate. At one point my Apple Watch fell out of my beach bag on the ship. It took the security team only a day and a half to track it down. They made me super happy and I was impressed how on top of it they were. I was happy to end the trip on a happy note! The shows were ALL super amazing. Our favorite being Brat Pack and Company Men. The pool was nice to have the ledge to sit on. Drinks were pricey- only regret was not getting the drink package. The library was one of our favorite spots! I had a allergic reaction to my sunscreen and couldn’t go in the sun so it was fun to be able to play card and board games and meet others. The books in there all looked brand new too! Everywhere we ate the food was exceptional! Our favorite was garden cafe of course and Food Republic. Ronin (washy washy guy) always made us smile and laugh as well as our room steward Chotbal was amazing! Working in the hospitality industry too I was quite impressed with all the environmentally friendly features they had onboard too. Like the electricity turns off in the room when you leave, the rooms don’t have trash bags, the stewards use paper bags to dispose trash, you need a key card to turn on the lights and outlets in the room, you have the option to reuse towels, and they don’t use plastic travel size bottles for shower things. They actually have soap dispensers in the shower which was really cool. Overall the cruise was fantastic. We hope to go again soon! Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
We cruise often. This is my first Norwegian cruise. My husband has taken many NCL cruises. I didn't know what to expect. I was pleased with the layed back style. We didn't feel rushed getting ready for supper. It was nice not ... Read More
We cruise often. This is my first Norwegian cruise. My husband has taken many NCL cruises. I didn't know what to expect. I was pleased with the layed back style. We didn't feel rushed getting ready for supper. It was nice not having a specific time to be anywhere. The Summer Palace dining room was very nice. The staff there was very friendly and called us by name. The food was good and they were very attentive. We ate at Cagneys. The food there was wonderful! Embarkation was not so good. We sat in a room for a long time, and it seemed like the workers were confused on what was going on sometimes. The cruise ship we were getting on did come in late, but it seemed really unorganized. The singing/dancing shows were like most others. The juggling/comedian was ok. His jokes were old. He was still talking about Bill Clinton and Monica. The engaged couple who did the acrobat acts were really good. The Legends show was great! Elton John, Tina Turner, and Elvis was like a Vegas show. We loved it! We didn't use the pool or hot tubs, but they were about the same as all ships. We got the drink package and only drank a few alcohol drinks, as we are not big drinkers. The man who served coke in the buffet was always smiling and very friendly. His name was Redentor Bungay and he was from the Phillipines. He remembered us and had our drinks ready when he seen us in line. The girl at the buffet entrance holding the hand gel saying "Washy Washy" and the man with her playing the guitar were always smiling and singing. It always made me smile too. Very nice and welcoming. Having the silverware on the tables was a great idea. It's hard trying to hold a roll of silverware, and try to fix a plate then hold a glass and find a table. Good Job NCL. The other cruise lines need to learn from you on that one. I remember looking at the life boats and thinking WOW, they are nice. I was surprised with they dropped when it was time for us to tender into of the ports. Vincent was our cruise director and he was very involved and seemed to love his job.We loved all of his crazy suits. He was standing at the ramp dancing and partying with the crew as we got back on the ship from one of the ports. and my favorite part about getting back on the ship was the last handing the guests a cold wash cloth to wipe your face. FANCY! All in all, this was a great cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Overall our trip was fantastic. The food was good or great, and n general the crew was fantastic. The ship was incredibly clean. There were activities for all to enjoy. The entertainment was incredible. The dueling pianos at Howl at the ... Read More
Overall our trip was fantastic. The food was good or great, and n general the crew was fantastic. The ship was incredibly clean. There were activities for all to enjoy. The entertainment was incredible. The dueling pianos at Howl at the Moon were definitely a highlight. Burn the floor and Rock it ages were amazing. The musicians were so friendly and approachable. We also enjoyed the band playing in the jazz club each night. Highway something or other. Friendly bar staff, great drinks. Awesome art Auction! We were there with extended family including my 14-year-old niece. It was a huge disappointment that she was not allowed in the main pool. It was also incredibly annoying for us being in the pool with the constant whistle blowing at the teenagers attempting to get in the pool. Very confusing as the main pool rules include "must be potty trained or in a swim diaper." Her option of pool was filled with tiny kids and nowhere to swim. We also were only able to get in a hot tub two times the whole 7 days because that's where all the teenagers were who couldn't go in the pool. We never really saw our room steward, and we filled up a laundry bag and it was never taken. We were hardly in our room, so it's alright that we didn't see him much, but the laundry thing was baffling. It sat there for two full days. He moved it to make our bed. We did not mention this while on the ship because we were very busy enjoying all the entertainment and just decided to forget it and save the money. We also had items missing in our mini fridge from the last occupants I'm guessing - we were not charged as we explained this to the service desk. While on the Epic we had such a different experience with our steward. He was our friend by the end! The only difference is we pre-paid the room charges this trip. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
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