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2,036 Norwegian (NCL) Port Canaveral (Orlando) Cruise Reviews

My family selected this cruise line because we were told it had been renovated and like new. Our travel agent assured us that the drink packaged (that we purchased) included premium/top shelf alcohol. Well, it did not. The staff was ... Read More
My family selected this cruise line because we were told it had been renovated and like new. Our travel agent assured us that the drink packaged (that we purchased) included premium/top shelf alcohol. Well, it did not. The staff was extremely rude and treated you as if they were doing you a favor. The food was very basic and not appetizing at all. The restaurants included in the package served the same menu daily and was bad. The restaurants that you pay for the meals were superb. This was my first cruise and was going to be my last. However, my family members had been on many cruises (Carnival Cruises) and assured me that this is not what they had ever experienced. One family member even had food poison. The ship and cabins were clean and good. The casino is extremely small. They also have very limited vendors on the ship. The gift shop was mediocre. Note...they will not provide you with a straw nor a stirrer to mix your cocktail. They stated that they did not want you to become intoxicated quickly, however, they will top off your pina colada with straight rum, sitting on top. And you had unlimited drinks. I will attempt another cruise, but will definitely not be on a Norwegian. Very disappointed. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Overall, it was an experience. I thought food was bland. Did not enjoy buffet experience. Minimal opportunities for late night food. Smoke from casino could be experienced throughout that side of the ship- may want to close the doors or ... Read More
Overall, it was an experience. I thought food was bland. Did not enjoy buffet experience. Minimal opportunities for late night food. Smoke from casino could be experienced throughout that side of the ship- may want to close the doors or improve ventilation. Cabin had leftovers from previous cruise (duffel bag and condom wrapper). DENISE our steward was amazing. (Best service given by her-she was creative in finding solutions and offered to be of any assistance). While snorkeling on the private island, I became sick and visited the first aid station. No one helped when i was sick in the water and a fellow passenger was the 1st to offer assistance, not a staff person. I was taken to the first aid station where I was very disappointed to learn it would cost 200 dollars to see a doctor who would probably only confirm what I knew, I had a virus. I felt judged as people thought I was a messy drunk, I don't drink. The air conditioned environment and wheelchair ride to the tether boat was helpful. When family and friends heard of our trip and our experience they were surprised that we were on the Norwegian Cruise Line as they had a better reputation for customer service. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Cruising with a baby. Lots of threads say no way. Others say, OK. Well as far as personal experiences go, our weekend getaway on the NCL Sun was a delight from A to Z. My biggest concern was the stateroom...space, bath time ... Read More
Cruising with a baby. Lots of threads say no way. Others say, OK. Well as far as personal experiences go, our weekend getaway on the NCL Sun was a delight from A to Z. My biggest concern was the stateroom...space, bath time and just being able to relax after putting her down (7:30 bedtime). Reading about the penthouse's amenities as well as the spacious tub and additional room, it was a no-brainer. From the moment we checked in at Port Canaveral to the time we bid farewell, everything about the boat exceedingly met our needs. Our butler (Rogin) as well as our concierge (Iris) were able to assist us in ways I hadn't even thought of. The MDR staff were accommodating as were the food and beverage staff on Great Stirrup Cay (lunch buffet doesn't technically start up till 11:30. When I explained that we had a young one who was getting a little cranky for a snack of some sort they were happy to run back and fetch a couple of bites prior to opening). That literally saved the day and was VERY much appreciated. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I cannot wait to come back!!!!! Everything was amazing!! First of all, embarking and disembarking was super organized so no stress there. Once you are all settled in you have soooo many options, so many things to do you will not be bored. ... Read More
I cannot wait to come back!!!!! Everything was amazing!! First of all, embarking and disembarking was super organized so no stress there. Once you are all settled in you have soooo many options, so many things to do you will not be bored. Open bar was simply an amazing bonus on top of food and service and everything else included. Our cabin was cleaned every day super well and the entertainment was the best. We danced so much and laughed so much. My boyfriend and I went for our birthday and we had an absolute blast. Regardless of how busy a bar or a restaurant may have been the serviced we received was always polite and handled in the fastest way possible. Just because this is open bar doesn’t mean it’s a cruise for crazy college students. I saw all ages in this cruise having a blast. There’s something for everybody at every hour of every day. I’ve had friends that have been on other cruise lines and their explanation of how good of a time they had is no where near as good as mine!! 20/10 for Norwegian !!! Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
The reason i chose this cruise was for my brother's wedding and also it being my first time cruising i had an amazing time on the cruise all the crew members where extravagant and very nice helpful in every way. I have recommended ... Read More
The reason i chose this cruise was for my brother's wedding and also it being my first time cruising i had an amazing time on the cruise all the crew members where extravagant and very nice helpful in every way. I have recommended this cruise to all my other family members who didn't go. I will definitely cruise with Norwegian again.My husband and I both enjoyed ourselves on the excursions the cruise and etc. We also took our son to the kiddie pool that was his first time going the pool and he loved it. All the way around the cruise was just fantastic. It being my first one ever i have really enjoyed my trip and i can not wait to plan another trip with Norwegian cruise. this time around i would like for it to be a little bit longer than three day. I would like more info. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
After 22 years of fun sailing I feel it necessary to give my first negative review. My wife and I are Platinum Members and truly enjoy the perks we receive but this cruise started off wrong before we ever got on the ship and the problems ... Read More
After 22 years of fun sailing I feel it necessary to give my first negative review. My wife and I are Platinum Members and truly enjoy the perks we receive but this cruise started off wrong before we ever got on the ship and the problems continued afterwards. During our "Priority Check-in" our desk attendant froze the computer three times and each time needed an IT staff member to unlock his screen. Finally while trying to take my photo so I could get on the ship he locked the computer once again, only now he needed to provide his security number, which he forgot, to unlock the computer. Further delays while he and the IT officer went off to fix the issue. Bottom line we finally met up with our friends who went through general check-in and ended up waiting for us. Please note that problems during check-in lead to further problems two days later when I received a form letter from the Front Desk notifying me that I had to pay cash as there was no credit card on file. After ten minutes the Front Desk attendant, who was very polite, informed me that during my "check-in" the save button was not hit after I provided my credit card. She was able to correct this problem with no further issue. One of the nicest perks with being a Platinum Member is using having dinner in the extra charge dining rooms such as Cagney's. Too bad we didn't know this benefit does not apply on cruises under five days. We did go and the food was great as always but it would have been nice to know ahead of time what was and what wasn't covered. Loved Cuba, and the excursion was great even though the country is so very poor. But as of today 7/23/18 we have still not heard a word from NCL, nothing. We wrote them once right after the cruise, and emailed them. twice, but after six weeks still not one word, which as I mentioned to them is unacceptable. Update...finally received response from NCL after 35 days. Email was a combination of a form letter however there were a few personal entries referring to this cruise. A small future credit has been issued and it is appreciated. We are already booked on a future cruise for Thanksgiving and will probably go on another Baltic Sea Cruise next summer. We did the Baltic Cruise three years ago and had a wonderful time. Hopefully our experience with going to Cuba was a one time event as all of previous cruises were most enjoyable. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
After having taken several over the top cruises with Norwegian's luxury brand Oceania, I felt safe booking a family vacation with Norwegian to Cuba. Surely my Oceania experience would translate to a great, albeit slightly lower luxury ... Read More
After having taken several over the top cruises with Norwegian's luxury brand Oceania, I felt safe booking a family vacation with Norwegian to Cuba. Surely my Oceania experience would translate to a great, albeit slightly lower luxury experience. Where do we begin... The Good Stuff - The Norwegian Sun is a clean, well maintained ship with small to mid-size cabins one would expect on a smaller ship of it's size. My wife & I had a balcony room, and our kids shared an inside cabin right down the hall from us. This isn't a cruise where you interact with 4000 of your best "not" friends. The staff completes their tasks, and our room and food presentation was excellent. Embarkation and disembarkation were painless & quick. The deserts were amazing. And it was nice to have an open bar so you could get a drink or two without worrying about racking up huge charges that you'd have to settle at the end of the cruise. The only drawback to an open bar is that the bartenders were an unhappy lot - bordering on surly. The "free" wine at dinner was uniformly good. The Bad Stuff - the dining room food & entertainment (shows) were just awful. FOOD - again, after the 5 star Oceania dining experience, I knew the food wouldn't measure up, BUT I still expected it to be good. The presentation was beautiful, but the food was bland and tasteless. Salads with no dressing, fried food that had obviously been siting in warming trays before being served, and most disturbing of all service without a smile or enthusiasm. As if the wait staff couldn't wait for their shifts to be over. The dining rooms had plenty of staff, but operated with little efficiency, and then when the food was served it was only warm, if not cold. And the Coffee.... The coffee is just awful dishwater (weirdly I found this on Oceania too). And if you want to get a good cup of coffee, you have to pay for it at the coffee bar. So you have an open bar, but you have to pay for bottled water and good coffee... Go figure. Interestingly, I found the food on the buffets to be better quality than the dining rooms. My recommendation if you're going to eat on the Sun is to explore the curry dishes. Most of the staff is from the far east (including the main chef), and without exception, the dishes from their countries were flavorful. If you don't like curry, you're screwed - expect to get bad banquet food and you won't be disappointed! ENTERTAINMENT - the performers for the shows are EXCELLENT. The shows however are at best banal, and at worst cheesy and insulting to the intelligence of those watching. I saw people get up and leave, and I ended up leaving from the 2nd show (World Beat) about halfway thru. I felt sorry for the performers having to sing & dance such crap. Other entertainment "highlights" were a 3 piece caribbean band with a drum machine, a jazz band with an out of tune vocalist and uninspired playing, and an un-funny MOR comic. THE PORTS: The ports (Key West & Havana Cuba) are what you'd expect. Key West is touristy, crowded and expensive. Because you dock at the Navy yard, you can't walk off the ship and must wait for "going to shore" tickets to take a free tram/trolley to the downtown. If you want to go to shore, get down to the Bliss lounge as soon as you are allowed to get your tickets (usually 11:30am). We waited and it took over 3 hours AFTER we docked before we could leave the ship. Havana, Cuba is in dire need of a whole city pressure washing. Think a moldy Barcelona... Cuba still hasn't recovered from the damages of 2017's Hurricane Irma, and much of the water front architecture is in dis-repair. That being said its a beautiful city with incredible architecture. The people were uniformly friendly. We chose to book an old car tour directly with a cuban company before we boarded the ship (oldcartours.com). It was less than 1/4 of the price that Norwegian wanted for the exact same experience. THIS WAS THE HIGHLIGHT OF THE CRUISE!!! Two hours of a personal guide in a candy-red 1953 chevy convertible with white leather seats. My kids and wife LOVED it! At the end of the tour, our driver gave us two beautifully ripe mangos he had picked from his garden that morning - YUM! Be aware that you will get screwed when you go to convert your dollars to the Cuban tourist currency (CUC). Cuba has set the exchange rate at 1:1 PLUS a 14% fee. So my $160 ended up being 140 CUC. You will get a better exchange rate if you use Canadian dollars or Euros. BOTTOM LINE - Although we enjoyed our family vacation cause we were all together, I don't feel like we got the value we spent on the cruise. If I'd spent 25% more, I could have cruised on Oceania and eaten like a king. Other than the managers, the staff of the Sun really seemed like they didn't want to be there and their grim faces underscored their attitude. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We chose this cruise because it: departed from Port Canaveral, was 4 nights (not too long, not too short) and most importantly went to Havana Cuba. The embarkation and disembarkation processes went very smoothly. The ship was well ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it: departed from Port Canaveral, was 4 nights (not too long, not too short) and most importantly went to Havana Cuba. The embarkation and disembarkation processes went very smoothly. The ship was well maintained, and our cabin was clean and comfortable. The crew were friendly and fun without being too obtrusive. Dining at the Garden Café buffet was nice but usually very busy. The food was good and what you would expect from a buffet. We ate several nights in the included restaurants. The food there met my expectations but was not exceptional. Entertainment and activities were never ending and fun. But I could always find a quiet spot for some R&R when I preferred. The stop in Key West was fun but not long enough if this is your first visit. It deserves a long weekend! Havana Cuba was a "bucket list" thing for me. We took the Havana Old and New tour. The bus was modern, clean and air conditioned. Our tour guide was very friendly, spoke English extremely well, and shared all kinds of great information. We went the Jesus statue overlooking the bay, Revolution Square, Fort Morro, and the beautiful Havana cemetery. We saw and heard about many other sites as we drove through the city. I highly recommend this tour. After it was over, a few of us asked our tour guide if she could direct us to a restaurant for a late lunch. She took us and we had a wonderful meal at La Moneda Cubana Restaurant. It is within a few blocks walking distance from the ship and close to the old cathedral. We went up 3 flights of stairs to the rooftop restaurant and had a lovely meal with delicious food and friendly wait staff. We had converted some USD to CUP but they would have taken USD. Our last full day at sea was overcast with a bit of rain from time to time but that did not stop the fun and relaxation. Although I did not go to the stage shows, others in my group that went were very impressed. We also enjoyed the comedian and the fact that his "early" show was clean. We also enjoyed the variety of music available at various locations around the ship at all times of day and night. A few things that were not great: (1) one room of our party was abruptly awakened early on the last day with loud banging near their room. It was obvious that some kind of maintenance was being done; the noise continued for many hours. Why can't they do that later in the day or when in port and guests are out on excursion? (2) they varnished the rails on our balcony during one day of the cruise and that was inconvenient for our use of the balcony. (3) one of our party won a spa gift certificate. Turns out it was only for a service available off the ship. That seems a bit ridiculous. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This was my 16th cruise, hubby, BIL, SIL are all experiences cruisers as well. We are Carnival fans (this was my third NCL And everyone else’s first). I’ll attempt not to compare NCL to CCL... no promises though. This cruise was a ... Read More
This was my 16th cruise, hubby, BIL, SIL are all experiences cruisers as well. We are Carnival fans (this was my third NCL And everyone else’s first). I’ll attempt not to compare NCL to CCL... no promises though. This cruise was a birthday present for the hubby and BIL. Kid free planned cruise... bring in the booze! We live in N Fl so we drove down the day of the cruise. Parking at Port Canaveral is always A breeze! The hubby had a 11 am check in time. The rest of us had 1:30 pm check in times. I was stressed about this and couldn’t figure out why they were different since we were traveling together. They let us all acheck in and board at the same time. We were on the boat by 11:30! The Sun is a smaller ship and I’ve been in her sister; the Sky before. The decor was ok. I am one of those cheesy people that LOVES the glitz and glamour of Carnival ships. We were in an inside room and they were in a balcony. Both rooms were nice and had good space for a couple. Good in the main dining room and buffets were all good. Brazilian steakhouse was just ok and not worth the money in my opinion. Spa was ok. Massage was ok. This was the first cruise that I’ve been on that I actually felt a little bored on the sea day. The shows were ok. Bingo was good. We won the scavenger hunt. I actually won a free cruise in the raffle and while I was excited about winning, I found myself asking “can I take my free cruise on a carnival ship?” There was nothing wrong with the ship, staff, or trip.... but it wasn’t wow inspiring! We are not Pepsi fans and that’s all they have on board. You can’t even carry on a 12 pack of soda which is crazy because it would just save them money. I do love the all inclusive aspect to this ship. It’s nice not being tied to a room key/card every time I want a soda or drink. We did a tour through FerTours in Cuba. It was AMAZING! Nestor was our tour guide. He was awesome. In Key West, we did a conch train tour. Both were on our own; NOT through the cruise line. We will take our free cruise and enjoy it because a bad day at sea is better than a good day on land. I’m not sure that I’d pay for another NCL cruise unless it was the perfect trip at the perfect price. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We chose this cruise for an introductory short visit to Havana, and also loved the fact that the ship was leaving from Port Canaveral....much less hassel than Ft. Lauderdale or Miami. Parking was amazing...right outside the ship, across ... Read More
We chose this cruise for an introductory short visit to Havana, and also loved the fact that the ship was leaving from Port Canaveral....much less hassel than Ft. Lauderdale or Miami. Parking was amazing...right outside the ship, across the street. Embarkation was easy and quick. We are very experienced cruisers who almost always sail on Cunard or Celebrity. We had only been on NCL in 1997 for two cruises to and from Europe on the late, great oceanliner the SS Norway. So, we booked this cruise with some trepidation. We chose a standard cabin with balcony. We were totally surprised by the cabin, which we expected to be claustrophobic. First of all, the recent renovation was very obvious. The upholstery was all brand new, the carpeting clean, the lighting terrific, the table and chair had been removed to open up the space, with a flexible hassock put on its place to double as table or seat. The mirrored headboard and other mirrors gave a feeling of spaciousness. The sofa was very wide and roomy. The old fashioned shiny warm wood, combined with the very plentiful and well designed amazing storage throughout the cabin, gave the feeling of a vintage yacht. The bed was extremely comfortable. And, loved the coffee/hot water machine!! The bathroom was just adequate...it could have used upgrading, especially the shower which was ridiculously tight. But, the water pressure, temperature and great hand shower were all perfect. Even the dreaded clingy shower curtain was changed mid cruise to a brand new one. Our room steward Hearty was wonderful, attentive, and did a great job. The balcony was good, but could use a larger table. The ship itself was a bit confusing at first, because the layout is very unusual. A deck map on each level with a 'you are here' symbol, would have be advantageous. Other signage was helpful, however. The elevators were great. We liked the size of the ship, especially for a short journey. We were delighted with the 'free cruising' concept, with so many restaurant choices and inclusive drinks, etc. Bartenders were excellent. Other than a first night dinner problem....main course and dessert not good, all food after that was superb. The two main dining rooms were lovely and obviously upgraded (also, there were obvious upgrades in the other main areas), and the staff throughout the ship very gracious and attentive (but, odd that we never saw the Captain!!). We also ate in the Brazilian place and Le Bistro. We never encountered crowds or waiting...and we were were always ushered to a window table. Especially have to compliment the chefs on the pumpkin gnocci, the panacotta, the flan (part of the excellent Cuban dinner), the excellent onion soup in Le Bistro....and some other dishes that were really very, very good. Wish there were additional ice cream flavors. We enjoyed the guitarist/singer and the Latin duo. Would have loved two full days in Havana....just too much to see and do in one day and night. We toured on our own (six hours in vintage car)....at a much lower price than the ship offered for half the time. But, on the next cruise (we just booked the same cruise again for August) we are booked for the ship's art tour. Only real downer was the paucity of immigration personnel at debarkation....causing us to stand on line for an unusually and uncomfortable amount of time. But, that is not the ship's fault. One important recommendation is to add a lecture about Cuba....history, culture, sites, perhaps in late morning before docking in Key West. . Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We wanted a weekend getaway and a port that was easy to get to. This filled the bill. We won’t be traveling on an NCL cruise anytime soon. The way our issue was handled was not a good way to do business. We’ve written to the ... Read More
We wanted a weekend getaway and a port that was easy to get to. This filled the bill. We won’t be traveling on an NCL cruise anytime soon. The way our issue was handled was not a good way to do business. We’ve written to the company with our concerns and are waiting to hear from them. I feel sorry for the people who were assigned to our cabin after we left. The bathroom odor was worse when we disembarked. Food was good. Housekeeper was wonderful. We added an addendum to the paperwork we signed to indicate the problem was not a housekeeping issue. It was presented to us to sign that our issue was with housekeeping. Not the case. Our issue is with an obvious plumbing problem and a cabin not fit for guests. We spent a considerable amount of money and were not happy with the way this was handled. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We picked this cruise because its a great weekend Cruise. Leaving Friday, Saturday, Sunday and returns Monday morning. They let you board pretty early (11:30) so you really get a lot of time on the ship on Friday as well. The free ... Read More
We picked this cruise because its a great weekend Cruise. Leaving Friday, Saturday, Sunday and returns Monday morning. They let you board pretty early (11:30) so you really get a lot of time on the ship on Friday as well. The free drinks were a great perk too! Since everyone gets the free drinks, there's no issue with needing room card, etc. Drinks were delicious and bartenders were great. No long lines either. A perfect, reasonable price vacation for a weekend get away or even a vacation for a family when $$ are limited. Nice large pools and plenty of room by the pool to sit. Our cruise was sold out, but we never felt it was over-crowed. First time on the "Sun" and it we had an overall great time. Nice ship for a short stint. Not many activities onboard, but enough. With the ship being in port both days, (Nassau and the private island), the ship is pretty empty on those days so for anyone wanting to stay aboard you get lots of space to lay by the pool and/or just enjoy the ship! The ship was pretty and well maintained, rooms were clean, food and drink was good, staff was kind and friendly, what more can you ask for! A bargain, in my eyes, for the money. I've cruise Norwegian many, many times and they have not disappointed me yet. Sometimes when I read negative reviews I just don't know what people are looking for. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This was the fourth cruise that I have been on, first time on Norwegian, and I have to say it was by far the best one. The check-in and security getting on the boat was fast and smooth (took less than 10 minutes). Our rooms were typical ... Read More
This was the fourth cruise that I have been on, first time on Norwegian, and I have to say it was by far the best one. The check-in and security getting on the boat was fast and smooth (took less than 10 minutes). Our rooms were typical stateroom size, not very big. We got a balcony room. The rooms were always clean. This ship was smaller than the ones I have been on in the past but it never felt cramped. This cruise line lacked the restaurants (not specialty, but the ones normally included), but I honestly did not miss them. I felt the buffet had plenty of options so I was never bored. I think it also helped that it was a shorter cruise too, so we didn't eat as much on the boat because we disembarked two of those days. The food was good, no complaints. The best feature was the open bar, that was awesome. The entertainment and activities were plentiful. There was always something to do and everyone on staff was so nice and inviting. Lastly, the overall service of the staff was top notch. We did book the dolphin encounter excursion. That was great! A little pricey but we had fun so I guess it was worth it. The only hiccup with our excursion is that we were told to meet off the ship at 8:45 am for our encounter at 9:25, but by the time everyone got situated and on the bus, we did not get to Atlantis until 9:45. We were forced to reschedule because we missed the first half of our appointment. That part was a little unorganized. Overall, i enjoyed myself very much. So much so that I wouldnt mind going on that exact same cruise again, or a different one. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
The organization that I am a member of decided to cruise together. I had no idea of what to expect being a first time cruiser. The organizer had experience with cruise ship so she picked the Norwegian Sun. I must say it was an excellent ... Read More
The organization that I am a member of decided to cruise together. I had no idea of what to expect being a first time cruiser. The organizer had experience with cruise ship so she picked the Norwegian Sun. I must say it was an excellent choice. My family and I had such a wonderful experience. We have nothing to compare this ship to but if anything any better than the Norwegian Sun, all I can say is WOW! The service given by the staff was superb. The ship was very cleaned, the food was good. I can't imagine experiencing another cruise better than this one. I am looking forward to my next cruise that will include more days. The room was comfortable and relaxing. The staff making sure that all cruisers hands were clean at all times. Thank you Norwegian Cruise for your great customer service and for making our experience one to remember. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We chose this cruise as it left from a nearby port and went to Havana, Cuba. I also loved, loved the open bar. I was a bit skeptical and thought we would have to stand in long lines at just a couple of specific bars... but this was totally ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it left from a nearby port and went to Havana, Cuba. I also loved, loved the open bar. I was a bit skeptical and thought we would have to stand in long lines at just a couple of specific bars... but this was totally NOT the case. You could even get a drink from waiters around the ship. There were no passengers that I could see that got carried away with the open bar. The cruise staff were the friendliest I’ve seen in recent cruising. The ship was very clean. My stateroom steward always had ice in my cabin without even asking (which i have had to do on RC it every time). Food was good. I really did not enjoy the three specialty restaurants I went to that much, Glad it was a perk and I didn’t have to pay the up charge. I enjoyed the main dining room much more. I had hoped to open the balcony separater so that my family in the room next door could connect on the balcony but they would not do it. All in all, I liked the cruise and ship very much, Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We chose this cruise because it had a close to home departure and an excellent itinerary. We wanted to go to Havana and run the whole Malecon. Mission accomplished! Without getting too wordy: - Norwegian was stingy with ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it had a close to home departure and an excellent itinerary. We wanted to go to Havana and run the whole Malecon. Mission accomplished! Without getting too wordy: - Norwegian was stingy with information. It was like pulling teeth sometimes and was every now and then incorrect. - Food was not up to what we anticipated having been "loyal to Royal" until this cruise. - Missed having a promenade - Internet was AWFUL. We run a busy on-line translation business and all vacations end up being "working vacations. Not with Norwegian! We paid more than $30 a day for "unlimited" internet service. It was completely unusable. It may be great for social media fans, but for serious business, it is totally unacceptable. It ended up being a nice, but very frustrating, break from the business. - the entertainment was FANTASTIC! The show performers were the best we've seen on any cruise, and the cruise director, Jasper, was super. - the stop at Key West was just about right time-wise. We had a nice visit to places we have been to many times. - the visit to Havana was off any scale! We got off the ship early in the morning, with no problems, ran the whole length of the Malecon and back, chatting with some locals along the way. In the afternoon, we went on a guided tour of Havana offered by Norwegian, which was super, and then we walked around Old Havana by ourselves, which was very nice. We were too tired to enjoy Cuban nightlife, but the ship did remain in port until the next morning. We have beautiful pictures of the parts of Havana we got to. This stopover was our reason for choosing Norwegian, and we were not disappointed. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
My husband and I wanted to go to Cuba, however we were worried about being sea sick. Therefore we chose this short cruise from Port Canaveral to Key West then to Cuba. The staff were extremely friendly, plenty of entertainment (trivia, ... Read More
My husband and I wanted to go to Cuba, however we were worried about being sea sick. Therefore we chose this short cruise from Port Canaveral to Key West then to Cuba. The staff were extremely friendly, plenty of entertainment (trivia, gameshows, music shows, etc), you can eat and drink anytime. Embarking and disembarking went very smoothly (especially since we had never went on a cruise before and didn't know what the procedures were). From what I have heard the boat was just remolded and alot of of the "hacks" I read about we didn't need. The showers have clotheslines inside them. Tons of storage with hooks to hang things. We did the 6 hour tour (3 hours walking and 3 hours by car) with Havanacar.net Cuba which we arranged online prior to our cruise. This was AMAZING!!!! After speaking to many people on the boat the next day (booking through the cruise ship or online) we had the best experience. We can't wait to go again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Fantastic ! Went on this trip due to ease of Port Canaveral from Orlando and most importantly Havana cuba day trip. Well oiled machine from start to finish. No issues at all. Staff on boat was always amazing , friendly and smiling ! Boat ... Read More
Fantastic ! Went on this trip due to ease of Port Canaveral from Orlando and most importantly Havana cuba day trip. Well oiled machine from start to finish. No issues at all. Staff on boat was always amazing , friendly and smiling ! Boat was very clean top to bottom. Rooms a bit small but it was a short cruise and other than sleeping we weren’t in the room ! I’m vegan and still found enough options Luggage delivered quick on sailing day. We did a local off shore excursion using FerTours in Havana - very happy with the cost and communication and tour guide was Yacmel whose English and knowledge of USA was fantastic. Even the passengers all seemed nice- never saw drama and it was free booze and never saw drunk passengers ! Didn’t appear to be lots of kids like on other cruise lines which for me was nice as I’m in my 50s and prefer a more mellow atmosphere rather than partying and kids running all about. Highly recommend ! Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
My husband and I had been thinking about a Cuba cruise since Fathom started visiting a couple years ago. We're primarily NCL cruisers, but were thinking about going to the RCCL itinerary on the Empress out of Tampa - we're ... Read More
My husband and I had been thinking about a Cuba cruise since Fathom started visiting a couple years ago. We're primarily NCL cruisers, but were thinking about going to the RCCL itinerary on the Empress out of Tampa - we're driving from GA, so Tampa is a shorter trip, and we preferred the Key West stop to the one on GSC. However, when NCL announced the Sun's itinerary last year, we jumped! A port we like, a ship we like, an itinerary we like and free booze! Cruisers: My husband and me, both early 50s and my sister and brother-in-law, also both early 50s. My husband and I are platinum NCL, and my sister & BIL haven't sailed since a 3 day Bahamas cruise on the Big Red Boat - NCL newbies for sure. Pre-Cruise: We drive down the day before and stayed near the port in a hotel with a park n cruise package. We spent some time relaxing by the pool deck before heading to Cocoa Beach pier for dinner. The pier has several restaurants to choose from, but we went to the furthest one at the pier's end so we could also watch the beautiful sunset. Embarkation: We arrived pretty early so lines weren't too long. Since my sister & BIL were new to NCL, we checked in with them rather than the returning cruisers (Latitudes) line. They had our Cuba visas ready. We did not have to show our OFAC forms. We were all given group 3 for boarding. There was a separate waiting area for Latitudes, but we stayed together. We were called very quickly and had a drink in hand by about 11:45. Stateroom: Both of us booked sideways insides on deck 9. These rooms are terrific! The layout makes them feel very spacious, and neither of us were able to use all of the storage space. Both rooms had been renovated with new carpet, bed lamps with chargers, and new art. The couch was recovered a beautiful blue. The décor was a cool, blue, abstract type of thing - very attractive. I warned my sister that the bathroom was a little "RV-ish" but in reality we all found it fine (and both of our husbands are over 6 feet tall). Service: We had wonderful service from our stewards, bar staff, and wait staff. Our steward greeted us by name with a smile - impressive for just a four day cruise. We had a lot of fun with the bartenders in Champs bar (the upper bar on the pool deck - only open on sailaway and Thursday's "sea" day). We ate 3 dinners, 2 lunches, and one breakfast in the two main dining rooms, and had very attentive and pleasant service. We did not go to any specialty restaurants, though we did buy espresso in the afternoon everyday. Ports: First, Key West - I was a little disappointed that we were docking at the naval base, because the shuttle is a bit of a pain. We were going to wait for open shuttle, but my husband eventually went to get tickets. Our group was called around 2:15. We just did our own thing - went to the Hemingway House, checked out the Flying Monkey and Irish Kevin's, and finished with a Key Lime Pie on a Stick from Kermit's. Last shuttle left Mallory Square at 7:00. Second, Havana - My husband is an early riser and grabbed tickets for us. We were in group 5. Royal's ship was in port that day, and so we had half the normal number of customs stations to use. Customs took maybe 20 - 30 minutes, and then changing money took maybe another 15. Our tour was at ten and we made it with a couple minutes to spare. I followed the suggestion I read on the Cuba boards for a private tour. Great tour, energetic guide, easy to book online, and OFAC compliant. That was several hours long. While we had some other things planned, we were hot and tired at the end, and so we ended up going back to the ship around 3:00. We shopped a little in the port before getting back on. After a dip in the pool and a nice dinner, we were reenergized and went back out to some places recommended by our food tour guide. We also decided to check out El Floridita, even knowing it was likely to be very crowded and expensive. On our way there, it began to rain - we made it, but we were definitely soaked and bedraggled! We each had a daiquiri and a mojito, and were able to score a seat at the bar next to the Papa Hemingway statue - great for us in terms of taking pictures - annoying because we kept having to move so others could get pictures, too. It was very crowded and service was pretty slow, but I'm glad we checked it out. Music was great, but be aware, the musicians will come around with hat in hand for donations (this happened at all three places we had live music). Keep some CUCs ready if you're going out for music. Disembarkation: Our last cruise was on the Epic when it was delayed several hours by fog...this was a piece of cake compared to that, even though the power went out right before we were getting off (it didn't prevent us from being scanned out). Customs was pretty painless, and if you get a porter to assist you, you'll get through a shorter line (we didn't do that, but saw some folks that did). The hotel's shuttle was ready when we got off - we were in our car on the road by 9:00 AM. Final Thoughts: This was a whirlwind trip that was a lot of fun. The focus was on the ports and we didn't do a lot of our usual activities on this one. The Sun looks great with the refurbishments, all-inclusive was awesome, and we thought service and food was pretty good. The only theater show we saw was Rock Me Tonight - entertaining enough. We did catch some of the live music around the pool deck, and my sister got recruited to be a judge for the Sexy Legs contest - that was a hoot. I was a little worried about the process and paperwork for Cuba, but it was actually very easy, and nothing to worry about. If I were able to go again next week, I would in a heartbeat! Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I’ve had such an amazing time on the Cruise to Cuba on the Norwegian Sun. Every employee has been so sweet. My #1 favorite employee has been Sulejman Basic, who was mostly in the Garden Cafe. He’s been one of the best servers on the ... Read More
I’ve had such an amazing time on the Cruise to Cuba on the Norwegian Sun. Every employee has been so sweet. My #1 favorite employee has been Sulejman Basic, who was mostly in the Garden Cafe. He’s been one of the best servers on the ship, and always has a smile on his face. Also, the best drinks came from the poolside bar, Topsiders. Overall, this trip has been incredible, and I would DEFINITELY take this cruise and this ship again. I’ve had so much fun with the entertainment and the people in general on the ship. It has definitely been a memorable experience. Everything was clean, the people have been nice, and everything has been easily accessible and inviting. There was nothing difficult about planning or executing this trip. My balacony had a beautiful view as well. The food was good, and they had enough vegetarian options For my 4th cruise, this was a 10/10 experience. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Norwegian used to be somewhat sophisticated and was always a better choice than Carnival. This is no longer the case. Reviews, and the NCL website stated that this ship was renovated in 2018. We saw no real evidence of this except for some ... Read More
Norwegian used to be somewhat sophisticated and was always a better choice than Carnival. This is no longer the case. Reviews, and the NCL website stated that this ship was renovated in 2018. We saw no real evidence of this except for some new paint and varnish. Reviews also stated that this is a beautiful ship. This is a plain, run of the mill, average at best, ship. It is very small and very unimpressive. Their is NO grandeur whatsoever and the floor plan is very disconnected. The pool was a joke... what they describe as two pools is actually a tiny kiddie pool and a yard size in ground pool separated by three small hot tubs. The shows were amateurish with unpolished singing and over accentuated dancing. Now the food. Food should have been the save all here but this sadly was not the case. The FOOD was the absolute pits. The buffet was hospital grade cafeteria style at best and the same exact foods were offered every day. The 2 main dining rooms were a little better but a nice atmosphere is where it ended. Cheap cuts of meat are used for their thin, grizzly “strip steak” and the chicken entrees were dry and tough. Everything is over salted, an obvious attempt to hide the inferior quality of the products they use. We tried two of the paid dining options and they were really no better. Spaghetti Carbonara was basically dry, butter and cheese pasta, chicken cutlet parm was deep fried with some cheese on top. Dessert everywhere was unetible. Cheesecake jiggled like gelatin and was tasteless. The Lava cake, that the staff raved about, was an undercooked fake chocolate cheap cake mix with some berries and a tiny half scoop of ice cream. Room service is no longer free if you want more than continental breakfast and a real kick in the pants was the increased “mandatory” $20 per person, per night, gratuity. That came to 34.% staff gratuity per night for our cruise. Insane! Had we known ahead of time we wouldn’t have been so generous all along. There are no straws of any kind available on ship for environmental reasons (which is great) but paper straws should have been made avail when they implemented this new rule. Smoking is very limited on the ship and despite being told that pipes and cigars are allowed in the casino prior to booking our trip and referenced in their online smoking policy, we were quickly told to extinguish. Staff was just ok as well. Only a few stood out as kind and hospitable the rest just seemed overworked, unfriendly, annoyed and stressed. Maybe the mandatory gratuity is to blame for the decline in service. That would be my guess. Last tip is if you’re leaving out of Cape Canaveral be prepared for a $17.00 a day parking fee. We learned later that a shuttle bus does exist but aren’t sure of what they charge or how far of a ride it would be. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This is my first shot at this; I will try to cover everything as best I can. We took the NCL Sun out of Port Canaveral for a 3 day cruise that visited Nassau day 1 and the private island Great Stirrup Cay on day 2. We’ve cruised on NCL ... Read More
This is my first shot at this; I will try to cover everything as best I can. We took the NCL Sun out of Port Canaveral for a 3 day cruise that visited Nassau day 1 and the private island Great Stirrup Cay on day 2. We’ve cruised on NCL 7 times including this one (Sky x2, Dawn, Spirit, Pearl, Epic). We like that we know what to expect. I’ve never been on another cruise line, although my partner has. We chose this cruise as a quick mid-summer vacation over a weekend. Side note: As a tip for others, we’ve cruised out of Port Canaveral 3 times and used the park and shuttle service at the Radisson every time. It’s about $10 a day and they handle your luggage on the shuttle and make sure it gets to the porters at the curb at the port. We have received good service from them, but anything beats paying the high port parking charges. On embarkation Friday, we decided to try something new, and get to the port early. We hate the long lines at check in; it’s always hot, the employees are slow, don’t care/can’t do anything to help, and people are testy. So this time, we arrived at 10:30am. Now it could’ve been that it was a smaller ship and therefore not as many people, but we will definitely try to get there early in the future. The lines were short, check-in was relatively painless and we waited for about 45 minutes before they let us board the ship. Our first visit to our stateroom proved to be a harbinger of things to come. There was pubic hair on the middle of the bathroom floor, and the carpet outside the bathroom was saturated w/ water. Our feet squished and you could see the water come to the surface. We immediately informed our stateroom steward who was lurking outside, and then went down to guest services to fix this and other issues, including the fact that one of our keycards didn’t work. Side note: If you ever have an issue on the first or next to last day of your cruise on NCL and can solve it anywhere but the guest services desk, you should do so. In my experience, especially at these times, lines are extra-long, employees are rude, short w/ customers, and will say nearly anything to get you to go away. Always get a name and note the time you visited, as we’ve been told outright lies at the desk before. We arrived to find long lines at the CSR desk, and during especially busy times they have employees stationed in line to “triage” concerns and try to lessen lines, but it’s not very effective. This particular time, however, we got a service agent who took our cards, fixed them, and then can with us to our room to make sure they worked. I was impressed, as we hit the lottery, it seemed. No employee on NCL had ever showed that level of follow up. I also showed him the water on our stateroom floor, and the fun began. Several people visited our room for the next hour or so, but no one ever really told us what was going on. During this time, I turned on the shower and could visibly see the water leaking out the crack under the bathroom door onto the carpet. Once we knew this, it was time to move cabins. I’m not walking on anyone’s dirty shower water. How this issue wasn’t noticed by a steward is very suspicious to me, and seems close to negligence. I immediately called the CSR that helped us before, as he left his card, and began speaking w/ his supervisor. During the wait to move cabins, our stateroom door was opened by staff and there was a blower placed in our room. Everyone walking by looked in to see what was going on, so we were the entertainment for the afternoon. Instead of video of us enjoying and exploring our ship, I have video of the blower in our room. Overall, it took us 5 hours to be moved, and the supervisor, “Natasha” acted like it was our lucky day because we received an “upgraded” stateroom. (It was the same balcony room type in a different location at the rear of the ship-which was the loudest room we’ve ever stayed in-especially when the ship was moving. And it shook/vibrated like crazy). We also had an issue w/ one of our suitcases not making it to the room until almost 10pm, and we had to track it down ourselves (made worse by the fact that we switched rooms). I visited the CSR desk again later on and spoke w/ the agent who had helped earlier, and said we felt like we needed something needed to be done in terms of compensation for the entire mess, but we received no word after that. The first third of our cruise was ruined. No one ever came to check on us, apologize, or see if everything was OK. Ever. Side note: NCL has been AFWUL, TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE w/ service recovery when something has gone wrong on our cruises. Most of the time it has been minor stuff, but the “silo” approach they use w/ chain of command means that one hand is never aware of what the other hand is doing. It seems that when we make more noise/complain more, things tend to get resolved quicker. This time, we quietly went along w/ the program and the results weren’t good at all. Being that NCL is all I know, I can’t compare it to any other line’s service. So with the fiasco of “water” gate behind us, we were able to get out and explore the ship. The Sun is one of the smaller ships in the NCL fleet, but it’s recently been renovated and has a fresh, smart feel to the public spaces. We settled on the piano bar as our first destination. Like most of the NCL ships we’ve been on, this one has a piano bar that’s decorated like your grandfather’s library. It’s usually one of our favorite places to get a drink and hear decent music. Turns out that most of our drinking and music time was in this bar during this cruise. Service is generally OK, but sometimes during busy periods you’ll need to go to the bar and get your own drink. Since this cruise was priced w/ alcohol included, we like to try things that we don’t consume on a normal basis. But just a warning: the “freebies” only include booze to a certain level; that Bulleit bourbon or Grey Goose vodka will cost extra. Side note: A disturbing trend on NCL cruises in the past two years or so has been musicians’ use of drum machines/artificial accompaniment. In my opinion, this sounds horrendous. Most of the artists we hear are very talented, but when they use these devices, sound hokey and contrived. I wish they’d discontinue the practice. Again, I have nothing else to compare it to, but am curious if other lines commit similar atrocities. The acts we heard used iPads for lyrics, but we didn’t hear any drum machines on this cruise. (Thanks, Cruise gods!) After a few drinks, we decided to check out the casino. We typically spend several hours gambling on every cruise we’ve been on, and this one was no different. But the casino on this boat is not a very nice space to spend any time. It seems cramped, was extremely hot each time we were there, and has the worst smoke/particulate management system of any NCL casino we’ve been in. We chose not to visit until the very end of the night because we/our clothes smelled terrible after 5 minutes of being in there. On top of that, the limits on table games are very high. The minimum for blackjack was $15 for the duration, and it’s the least desirable kind of table: continuous shuffle. Three card poker limits were $10, and they only had one table. Most cruises lower their limits at least for some of the time, but we didn’t see that if it occurred. So on to dinner! We have always thought that the food served in the 2 main (free) dining rooms has been pretty good, and that’s been our experience on every NCL cruise we’ve been on. It’s usually good enough that unless we have a special occasion to celebrate, we don’t spend extra on the pay restaurants. I would say most meals are comparable or better (especially the fish selections) than most casual sit-down restaurants on land. They change they menu every night and no matter which main dining room you choose, the menu is the same in both places. There’s usually a beef, chicken, and fish selection that changes and then they serve some “greatest hits” dishes, e.g. steak and French fries, every night. On this cruise, the entrée choices were decent all 3 nights, but the desert and appetizer choices were stagnate. Service was pretty good, there was one night that things were taking a little longer than normal. Breakfast on Saturday and Sunday in the Seven Seas was good as well; as a tip: skip the eggs to order and get the omelet. That way your fake eggs are fresh! We always make some trips to the buffet during the cruise, and this ship has one of the smaller buffets on any ship we’ve seen. We like visiting the outside grill in the back of the ship, there’s always a hamburger or hot dog waiting for you when you need it most. The bar out at that restaurant is less crowded than most, also. So the first day we visited Nassau. We’d been here 3 times previously, seen most of the city including Atlantis, so this time just opted to walk around for a few hours on the streets relatively adjacent to the port. The straw market is pretty cool, and if you’re a wristwatch enthusiast, there are several high end boutiques we enjoy browsing in. The straw market is a good place to buy cheap made-in-china souvenirs, and we always have fun bargaining w/ the locals. This port is really easy to visit, as the ship dock right up to the pier and getting on and off is as easy as walking a few hundred yards. Atlantis looks cool in the distance, but we visited one time and found it didn’t have much to offer that was worth the cab fare. On day two, it was Great Stirrup Cay. We’ve been to the private island 5 times, and it’s always a highlight of our trip. Once you get off the tender boat, you are free to do whatever you want for the day. We enjoy snorkeling and bring our own equipment to save rental fees. I’ve never rented the NCL equipment on the island, but I’ve seen plenty of people having trouble w/ it, and it looks cheap. For the price of one rental, you can buy a high quality mask/snorkel and keep it forever. I have my own fins too, but you probably don’t need them for casual snorkeling here. Again, the ones they give you in the rental package are very small and cheap. They are working to place man-made sculptures and other items along the ocean bottom, most of it is cheesy but fish seem to like some of the statues. The snorkeling spot is about 75 yards out away from the main beach along some rocks, pretty easy to get to. When you’re done w/ recreating, you’ll be hungry. They have a buffet that’s pretty typical for NCL that goes until 2 or so in the afternoon, then they close it down. The food spot is pretty easy to get to no matter where you choose to set up your chairs. They seem to be adding more and more stuff every time we’re there; they’re in the middle of building a lighthouse right now. I would suggest walking down a ways along the beach (to the left), you’ll find less crowds and more shady spots for the taking, but all with easy beach access. The tender process to/from the island is always a tricky proposition, people are always anxious and cranky both ways, but especially on the way back to the ship. It’s worse when the sea is misbehaving, but this time it wasn’t so bad. When it came to disembarking the ship on Monday, we also tried something new, we carried our own luggage off the ship. It was easy b/c with a shorter cruise, we didn’t have as much luggage, and it made getting off a breeze. We were in the car headed home by 10:30am. So that’s pretty much it; but I do have a few observations of this cruise relative to other NCL itineraries we’ve sailed on. There were less kids on this cruise. For us, that’s a bonus. I’m not sure if it’s typical of this itinerary, but there were more couples and large adult groups (like bachelor parties). We wondered if this would be a wild, everyone-was-plastered-drunk all the time cruise, but it wasn’t the case. It was pretty normal. For a quick vacation, this would be something we’d do again. We were disappointed that the cabin mishap caused us to miss 1/3 of our fun, so that was unfortunate. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Quick takeaways: PROS CHEAP cruise, open bar. Can’t beat the value. Old and small ship but refurbished. Nice public areas, bars/lounges etc. Lots of seating on the pool deck Perfect weather CONS Odd ship layout. ... Read More
Quick takeaways: PROS CHEAP cruise, open bar. Can’t beat the value. Old and small ship but refurbished. Nice public areas, bars/lounges etc. Lots of seating on the pool deck Perfect weather CONS Odd ship layout. Difficult to navigate to dining rooms on opposite sides of ship. Poor signage, hard to find public restrooms. Food was mediocre compared to other cruise lines. Entertainment was terrible. Service was hit or miss. It was a “booze cruise” and came with the “clientele” you’d expect to find on one. Embarkation We packed the morning of 6/1, left the house at 9:45am and arrived at Port Canaveral around 10:30am. We dropped our bags off at the curb and then parked the car. Total cost to park was $68. Don’t bother trying to save $20 by parking off-site and taking a shuttle. Parking is so close that you can see your car right when you exit the terminal. That kind of convenience can’t be beat. We went through security, checked in at around 10:45am and were assigned boarding group 3. At 11am an announcement was made stating that boarding would begin at 12pm. Then at 11:10am, boarding began. I guess they changed their minds. We were on the ship by 11:45am. Day 1 Upon entering the ship, the staff was eager (if not a bit pushy) to usher you up to deck 11 to eat lunch at the buffet. I don’t do buffets if there are better options available, and there were (or so I thought). At 12pm the MDR opened and what looked like the more “seasoned” cruisers that knew better, arrived to eat lunch to avoid the chaos and subpar buffet experience. Lunch was…interesting. I’ve never seen a meatball sub on the menu at a restaurant with linens and wine glasses on the table. I opted for the calamari appetizer and a shrimp/penne pasta. The calamari was great, pasta was OK. My girlfriend ordered the pho for her appetizer (random thing to throw on a menu as this was the only Asian themed dish available) but it was quite good. She wasn’t impressed with the rest of the menu and settled for the salmon burger for entrée. We eat salmon probably every week at home, so she figured this would be a safe choice. Far from it. She took one bite and said, “this tastes awful.” I took a bite and it was indeed awful. I’m not sure if the salmon was old or just a cheap cut, but it had a very “fishy” taste that fresh (or even remotely fresh) seafood just isn’t supposed to have. We’ve bought frozen salmon burgers from Sam’s Club before and while not great, they were better than what we were served. That really says something. She sent the dish back, and we just went straight for dessert. I had a peanut butter cheesecake and she had a white chocolate mousse. Both were good, but nothing to rave about. Afterwards, we went up to the pool deck for a drink. This was your classic 3-day Bahamas “booze cruise.” The “clientele” was like what you’d find on Carnival. Lots of American flag bathing suits, cans of Bud Light, and people treating the staff poorly. I’m not passing judgement on these folks, just describing it as I saw it. There were also some families with small children and a lot of folks from India. I could tell that they weren’t expecting the environment they were about to get into. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t some rowdy out of control atmosphere. But, it’s not the kind of cruise I’d take for a family vacation with the little ones. I imagine the environment would be MUCH different on a weekday Cuba cruise. Probably a lot of seniors. The rest of the afternoon was spent hanging around the pool having drinks. The open bar concept was nice as there was no need to swipe cards. Two drink limit per person, per trip to the bar. Liquor and beer selection was limited, and certain liquors were an upcharge. But, I had no problem finding something sufficient to drink. One annoying restriction is that nothing was served straight up, even if you requested it. Only on the rocks. A word to the wise – when you order your drink BE SURE TO SPECIFY WHICH BRAND OF LIQUOR YOU WANT. They might have Kettle One vodka on display but if you simply ask for a “vodka and soda,” the bartenders have obviously been trained to reach for the cheap stuff in the well. Based on my observation, I’d say 75% or more of the passengers didn’t know any better. So, don’t forget, ask for a pina colada WITH BACARDI, etc so you can avoid a hangover in the morning. Dinner was in the MDR and was a disappointment. The only thing I remember was that my steak was so gristly that I could not chew it. There was really nothing else memorable about the experience. DAY 2 - NASSAU We woke up and went to MDR for breakfast at around 8:30am. Not bad, standard choices of omelets, eggs, bagels, etc. I don’t do overpriced ship excursions so beforehand I found a craft beer walking tour offered by a local tour group that looked interesting. Meeting point was about 15 minutes from the ship. The tour comprised of us and one other couple (another reason I love non-ship sponsored tours) along with a guide. Very personal experience. It was a walking tour and we went to several bars, tried appetizers and local beer, got a history lesson, walked by some government buildings and then finished at Pirate Republic, the first and only craft brewery in the Bahamas. Considering Caribbean beer in general is pretty bad, this place was a welcomed surprise. I enjoyed the tour and would recommend it if you want something not so “tourist-y”. I’d also recommend you visit Pirate Republic even if you don’t want to do the tour. It’s a 15-minute walk from the ship and reasonably priced at about $6 per beer. After returning to the ship, we had more drinks and then another “blah” meal in the MDR. We went to the comedy show, which was terrible. Over half of the audience walked out before it even ended. Ourselves included. I’m not usually one to do that, but since so many other people left, I slipped out as well. DAY 3 – GSC The same as the previous morning, we went to the MDR for a decent breakfast. We were among the first groups of people off the boat to tender to GSC. We arrived around 9:15am. The island was gorgeous, and empty. Plenty of places to lounge and swim. Around noon, more groups of people arrived, and it filled in a bit. There are two places to eat. A main buffet, which had awful looking burgers and pizza, and a taco hut. We went for the tacos. I was pleasantly surprised. Beef and chicken were good and came with all the fixings, including guacamole. I’d recommend this place. After lunch, things start getting a little livelier. The drunks were really drunk, and you’d hear a lot of hooting and hollering. I felt sorry for the bartenders as they were busting their butts and looked visibly frustrated at how intoxicated the guests were becoming, especially when demands of “make my drink stronger” were made. To make matters worse for them, no one was tipping them (a theme common to this cruise). It was quite sad how thrilled they were when I’d throw them a dollar or two when I got a round of drinks. If you’re reading this – please tip these folks. They really work hard. I observed one woman in her 20s get injured while trying to play volleyball while wasted. Not a good idea. First Aid carted her off and then I saw her later on crutches. It’s my understanding that sometimes bad weather prohibits the GSC stop. If this were the case, I’d have been extremely disappointed. There really isn’t enough to do on the ship to warrant an entire “sea day.” Cancelling the GSC stop would have greatly reduced the value I received from this cruise. At about 3pm we went back to the ship and took a nap at the pool. Another “blah” dinner in the MDR. We hung out at a few of the lounges that evening which was relaxing. We went to the “adults only” comedy show at 11:30pm. The guy was late and didn’t come on until 11:45pm. He was so awful. Really bad. I didn’t even want to go as I had learned my lesson the night before, but my girlfriend thought the “adults only” version would be better. She was wrong. About 30 minutes into the set, the guy whipped out a guitar. At that point, the theatre started to clear, ourselves included. We woke up in the morning for one final meal in the MDR and then we carried off our luggage. No lines. By 9am, we were back at home. We had fun on this cruise. Was it a great cruise? No. But it served its purpose. Cheap, quick, easy getaway with free alcohol. Would I cruise the Sun again? Probably not. Due to open bar, the DSC was $19.99pp. So total for the cruise with taxes, fees, DSC etc was $950 for 2 adults in an interior. I was satisfied with what I received for $950, but I wouldn’t pay any more than that. Based on what I’ve seen online, these rest of the cruises are well above this price point. Compared to RCL, I found service and food on NCL to be inferior in every way. There was just nothing special about the entire experience. The food was OK, at times it was just plain awful, and the staff was very indifferent. HOWEVER, I understand it is not an apples to apples comparison to put an Oasis class ship against the Sun. And I walked onto the boat with the bar set very, very low. Therefore, I was not overly disappointed. Would I cruise NCL again? I’m not sure. If the itinerary and price were right, I’d probably give it another go on one of the newer ships. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
My husband and I are cruise junkies. The Norwegian Sun was our 16th cruise. We had never sailed with Norwegian before so we were kinda excited to try something different. So let me go over the positives first. This cruise was def the ... Read More
My husband and I are cruise junkies. The Norwegian Sun was our 16th cruise. We had never sailed with Norwegian before so we were kinda excited to try something different. So let me go over the positives first. This cruise was def the easiest and fastest embarkation and departure ever. We were on and off in no time. Loved that, no long lines. We checked in at 11:30. Walked right up to the check in desk and were on the boat within minutes. Went ahead and put on our suits and went to the pool. Another positive, is this one had the open bar already included with the price. You didn't have to worry about using your card, or signing a receipt every time you wanted to get a drink. Also, the muster station drill was alot faster than most. We get aggravated at that process usually because we have been on so many cruises, we know what to do and some can last alot longer than others. So that was a nice change. Our room was also awesome. I was nervous to do the "GURANTEED" room where they pick your room. I didn't know where we would end up. It was cheaper that route so I thought I would try it and see how it worked out. We got lucky and got put in a Handicap room which was awesome. We did book closer to the cruise so that may be the only room that was available. I wasn't complaining as it gave us a bigger room (interior) and the bathroom was ALOT bigger. So...onto my main complaints on this cruise. The first major one was the lame "lifeguards" they have around the pool area. ALL cruiselines we have been on let you have your drinks near the pool and in the pool for that matter, as they give you plastic cups. Whats the big deal? These 2 guys kept pesturing every guest that was near the pool with their cups. They literally wanted you to get out of the pool and sit on the side bench to drink your drinks. Who wants to get out every 5 seconds to do that? NOT ME!! So annoying. Also the bench they have around the pool, you have to step on to get over to the pool and its very high up, so that seems like an accident waiting to happen. Especially with drinking, and older people trying to get up there. I had a time, Im not spring chicken but only 38 and it was kinda hard for me. Secondly, the food was not great at all. The buffet food was basically the same stuff everyday. Granted this was only a 3 day cruise, so that may be why, but just not alot of variety. Even the pizza bar isn't 24hr like most cruiselines. I usually go for the pizza as the buffet food isn't always my cup of tea. The layout of the ship, getting out to the pool area and other exits was strange. YOu have to turn to go down a hall way before you turn again to go outside. Just seemed more closed in than most ships Ive sailed on. We didn't do any of the shows, so I can't comment there. We did do the Deal or No Deal game which was fun, and then Newly Wed game is always hilarious. I won't say I will never sail with Norwegian again, but probably won't be my first choice. I hope this helps. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I have never been on a cruise before. My sister booked this cruise for our very first annual vacation together. I work in healthcare and was impressed by the measures the staff took to ensure appropriate infection control practices, ... Read More
I have never been on a cruise before. My sister booked this cruise for our very first annual vacation together. I work in healthcare and was impressed by the measures the staff took to ensure appropriate infection control practices, including the hand hygiene stations throughout the ship. The crew worked diligently to keep the ship clean and safe. I enjoyed our cabin with a balcony because we were able to experience amazing sunrises and sunsets from the comfort of our private room. The staff were always very professional, attentive, and provided excellent customer service. Our dining experiences were excellent. There was a wide variety of food and drinks to choose from and there was never a long wait for dining services. I was also very pleased with the all inclusive aspect of adult beverages. I was able to sample several different cocktails and drinks that I had never tried before. The onboard activities and onshore excursions were also a lot of fun. I will definitely book another cruise on the Norwegian Sun. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
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