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96 Rome (Civitavecchia) to Europe - All Cruise Reviews

We loved the small ship! The size was just right for us and we didn't miss all the bells and whistles and thousands of other passengers on the huge other ships we've sailed in the past. Embarkation in Civitavecchia was the ... Read More
We loved the small ship! The size was just right for us and we didn't miss all the bells and whistles and thousands of other passengers on the huge other ships we've sailed in the past. Embarkation in Civitavecchia was the fastest and easiest we've ever had. Our cabin, 7088, was in the perfect location--just a few doors down from the laundromat and close to the elevator. Disembarkation and transportation to the Venice airport arranged by Princess was quick and easy. The food was amazing. I never disliked anything we had and there were so many choices in the main dining room. Every server and bar tender we encountered on the ship was excellent, friendly, and efficient. We loved the entertainment including Dan & Elliott (The Cruisetones) in the Casino Bar, Walker Black in Pacific Lounge, Paul Barton in the Casino Bar, and the very talented singers, dancers, and performers in main showroom. The ports of call were wonderful and all the tours we took with Princess and the ones we arranged on our own were great. The recently refurbished decor was very pleasant. We've never slept better on the most comfortable bed and bedding we've had on a ship. The temperature was easy to adjust in the cabin and the balcony was a good size. Our steward kept everything in tip top shape. We'd happily sail again on the Pacific Princess. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Pacífic Princess is the smallest ship in the entire Princess fleet. It’s size allows passengers to meet others and form new friends, on a first name basis! The relaxing ambience means it is unlikely to be pushed by other passengers, ... Read More
Pacífic Princess is the smallest ship in the entire Princess fleet. It’s size allows passengers to meet others and form new friends, on a first name basis! The relaxing ambience means it is unlikely to be pushed by other passengers, which is an awesome feeling. The nightly entertainment is outstanding and the Cruisetone group, consisting of two men, who play jazz and other tunes is captivating. There are activities throughout the day, at times it’s hard to decide which one to attend. The captain is a young super tall man who hails from Italy. He’s so gracious with the passengers and comes out daily at breakfast to say hello, surveilling the ship as he’s walking about. This was a 12 day Mediterranean cruise, 9 days in port. Personally, I’ve learned to enjoy the sea days more than the port days. I made two ports additional sea days. The ADA inside cabin, 4035, is a quiet room with no neighbors. There was never any noise from the Medical Center which neighbors this cabin. The only downside of this room was the small size and placement of the TV and the size of the refrigerator. I would have loved it if they would have mounted the TV on the wall opposite of the bed. It is offset of the bed and odd to view at the angle it’s mounted at. The closet area where the refrigerator was at was odd, because of the head from the refrigerator nothing could be placed on top of it. It’s a small refrigerator that I wish could be larger... as if I could bring more snacks to put inside of it. There are so many relaxing pool chaise lounges available, with nobody dragging them or saving them for others. There are large pool towels and blankets available should anyone need one. I noticed new teak sofa type furniture, pillows and a coffee table have been added in the grill area. I loved sitting there to hear the outside band play poolside. The gym literally had nobody working out so it was awesome to have the space to oneself. The jogging/walking track seldom had anyone using it. The ping pong table gets a lot of use, mainly if there is anyone less than 30 years old onboard playing. The internet could use some beefing up with their satellite system. It was completely down for close to 1.5 days. Most of the time it was consistently slow. It has not been converted to the Medallion Net. I’m wondering if it ever will be! As an Elite loyalty passenger, I got 250 free internet minutes plus I used my husband’s 250 free minutes. LOL The Pacific Princess is known for older passengers cruising, occasionally, there are a handful of kids, maybe because parents failed to investigate what types of children activities/play areas were available before they booked the cruise... there are none available, nor any babysitters. It’s the only ship where Princess doesn’t provide children’s activities/play areas nor services. The food choices are good, as well as the quality and taste. A passenger is easily spoiled by their awesome staff, who are hard workers, always ready to help make your cruise the best you’ve ever had. I doubt anyone lost any weight while onboard. It’s my fourth cruise on the Pacific Princess in the last 18 months. Needless to say, it’s my favorite ship. I’ll be back onboard two more time within the next six months. Definitely for the World Cruise in 2020! I’m saddened that the Pacific Princess will not be doing the World Cruises as of 2021. I hope that Princess reconsiders and puts it back on this intimate cruising ship. I’ve cruised on many other Princess ships but none can compete with the cruising experience of the Pacific Princess! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We chose this cruise because of the ports and the fact that it docked at the destination port for two days, allowing us to spend some time there prior to heading to the airport. We did go into Rome three days earlier than the cruise so we ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the ports and the fact that it docked at the destination port for two days, allowing us to spend some time there prior to heading to the airport. We did go into Rome three days earlier than the cruise so we could tour sites there. This particular ship was small, which allowed us to get to know others quite well that were on our same cruise. The Dining was experience was so good, because of the small size of the ship, but also because they paired us with two other couples at our table and they couldn't have picked more perfect combinations for us to dine with. The entertainment was top notch. The singers and dancers were well trained and practiced. The others that came in on certain ports to entertain us were well chosen. Comedian was great and the local talent orchestra and musicians were well done to give us a taste of the local entertainers. I would take this same cruise over and over again. The ports were amazing and the timing of at sea days with the excursion days was perfect. The bar staff took the time to get to know you, so they prepared the perfect drinks both alocoholic and non for you during the entire cruise. The cruise directors that did the trivia were fun and the late night music and piano bar were very enjoyable. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
First the good: 1. Excellent staff across the board. Everyone we dealt with was cheery and accommodating and truly nice. 2. The destinations lecturer was terrific. She was informative and interesting and helpful. 3. The itinerary ... Read More
First the good: 1. Excellent staff across the board. Everyone we dealt with was cheery and accommodating and truly nice. 2. The destinations lecturer was terrific. She was informative and interesting and helpful. 3. The itinerary was well-paced. 4. The dining rooms were well managed and tranquil. There are four of them, three of which are for "anytime dining" and that works surprisingly well. 5. Our stateroom was comfortable (Caribe 747) and our steward (Savio) went above and beyond to keep it nice. 6. As it was a 28-day sailing the entire dining room staff took care to know us and our preferences. Our assigned waiters (Maitree and Anna) were as good as the ones we've had on Silver Seas and Seabourn and Royal Viking, and they were good. All the other waiters we encountered during open seating meals were also excellent. 7. The pizzeria was handy, and the room service menu (except for breakfast) was fine. 8., Embarking in Rome and disembarking in Singapore was easy, as were most of the port visit disembarkations. Now the not -so -good: 1. It had been years since we sailed on Princess, and they've really declined in so many ways. No more festive sailaways (remember on-deck bands and streamers and champagne?) or Captain's parties. No more nice toiletries. As "Elite" cruisers we expected the promised "upgraded toiletries". Turns out they don't exist. Instead of decent soap and shampoo we got a bag with a nail file and eye mask and lip balm. Nice touch, but it doesn't count when you're stuck with the junk that is in dispensers bolted to the wall in the shower. And speaking of the shower stall, it's so small and dingy and poorly lit like the rest of the bath and you keep banging yourself on those nasty soap dispensers that shouldn't even be there. And the shower curtain is too big and long and billowy for the space.... 2. The food is cheap. Bad cuts of meat, scarce vegetables and too much salt on everything. The salad ingredients are so thinly sliced it's amazing they can do it. One radish must be stretched to fill four salads it's so thin. We had a dish that was supposed to be served with asparagus. They actually sliced the asparagus spear lengthwise in half and served three of them cut side down so at first glance it looked like three spears (which is already insufficient) but in reality it was 1 1/2. That's really chintzy. The "coffee" served in the dining rooms and buffet is disgusting. It's some sort of Nestle syrup mixed with water. It doesn't smell or look or resemble coffee, so you are forced to buy a coffee card to get a decent cup. The juices are awful, and the menus aren't very creative. Chicken and leek pie kept reappearing it's unwanted presence way too often.... 3. The ship is a bit shabby in places, but to their credit when I made a negative comment about the bad condition of our balcony and its furniture a crew arrived and replaced the furniture, cleaned up the rusted metal fixtures as best they could, painted the stained walls and trims, replaced the rotten wood rails and washed the crud off the floor. It took them a while, but it made a huge difference. If the ship was properly maintained these things would have been done as routine and not as a special request. 4. There is no enforcement of dress code: "formal night" at the table next to ours showed a big slob in a t-shirt and sneakers seated next to a well-dressed couple. Later that night in the theatre we were next to people in shorts and sandals and some guy with a rag tied on his head. It must have been his "formal dress rag"....5. And speaking of theatre, the entertainment was all over the map: There were wonderful performances by a male vocal quartet and a violin/piano duo plus a cocktail pianist. The house orchestra was also wonderful. There was a totally disgusting "tribute" to Stevie Wonder in which a guy tried to win over the audience by pretending to be Stevie Wonder, right down to pretending to be blind. Since when has pretending to be blind been considered entertainment? It was shockingly distasteful. There was also some kid pandering to the mostly Australian audience with his Austalian-ess and a ditzy Chinese girl cheesily channeling Charo, playing an incredibly loud electric violin and mistating the name of the pieces she was playing. It was like a skit from Saturday Night Live, especially when she'd stick her leg out of her dress and act sexy/coy and say "I love you".... 6. The incessent nickel and diming is unbelievable. Overpriced drinks, souvenirs, shore excursions, internet, photos, etc. are insulting. When you order room service you have to sign a slip acknowledging delivery. Why? Because it's just another way to get you to add a gratuity -- but how do you tip on a non-existent bill? And why should you, when you're paying $13.50 daily? Cruise ships are not ferries, Princess -- we did pay a fare, so it's insipid to be told that if you want a decent steak you have to go to the "Steakhouse" and pay $29 for it. That's $29 on top of the fare already paid for that evening's dinner and you don't get value for it, especially when you see that the "Steakhouse " is just a sectioned-off part of the buffet area and has a stifling hot, stuffy atmosphere....Just make the steak in the dining room decent and all will be well. 7. Plastic plates and glasses in the buffet are gross, and the excuse that you can't have china doesn't work. Other ships have china plates. The buffet is very unappetizing, anyhow, and the drinking water is vile -- it tastes like it comes from the swimming pool. The buffet room itself is a nauseating -- bad traffic flow, people with plates piled high grabbing for tables, no ventilation, no table cloths, place mats, place settings, service. It's like eating in Bedlam. The only good thing about the buffet was watching the people enter into the space and stop at a trough and scrub their hands before proceeding into the room. 8. Beware "Movies Under the Stars" -- it's not just under the stars but it's always. Yup, 24/7, day and night, movies blasting away on the top deck. Is a loud movie track blasting through the air just what you want when sailing through the Suez Canal? If so, then book Princess. If you'd rather tranquility then run the other way. All in all, if Princess could just up their game to where they were twnety years ago it would be nice again.... Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We chose this cruise for the itinerary: from Europe and the Mediterranean through the Suez Canal and the Middle East and over to Southeast Asia. The entire process of embarkation and disembarkation was very smooth and surprisingly ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary: from Europe and the Mediterranean through the Suez Canal and the Middle East and over to Southeast Asia. The entire process of embarkation and disembarkation was very smooth and surprisingly glitch-free, it was a well-organized ship. Some pluses: Good quality and variety of food Safety drills/pirate drills were informative and reassuring Comfortable beds and hot showers. Indoor stateroom was plenty big for the two of us, and the live ship camera made it feel like we had a balcony view. Some really nice crew members, and a great captain Emphasis on hand washing Cleanliness throughout the ship The down sides: Boring/silly activities better suited to a nursing home. Library was nearly empty when we boarded in Rome. Bad idea when there are six days straight at sea. Sneaky charges (use of the term “complimentary” when things weren’t free) Bombarded with ads for jewelry, spa treatments, etc. It was overkill, and very annoying. Waste of so much paper – ads, daily schedules. Dubai excursion was awful (but guide was good) We had only 8 min to visit the spice souk, and Dubai Museum was lousy (dark, crowded, uninteresting) Recommendations: Have a check-out system for library books Paper recycling system Smarter, more engaging activities – teach about wildlife in the area, or the geography and history of places as we pass by them. Use stateroom TVs to post schedules unless paper is requested, stop with all the ads Bigger and better variety of music for longer cruises versus the same songs over and over for a month Keep sick people out of dining areas, off tour buses (require masks?) Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We chose this cruise because itinerary included Malta and a few ports we had not seen. Also we are Princess Platinum and that includes a few perks such as 250 minutes of internet time. We also liked the idea of a smaller ship with fewer ... Read More
We chose this cruise because itinerary included Malta and a few ports we had not seen. Also we are Princess Platinum and that includes a few perks such as 250 minutes of internet time. We also liked the idea of a smaller ship with fewer than 700 passengers. However, we were disappointed in the overall condition of the ship. Cabin was too small and worn out. It is not up to date by current standards. Bathroom was not adequate and even hair dryer was old, had only one speed. Water in shower ran hot and then cold without changing temperature. Ship should be taken out of service or completely overhauled. Ship only has fixed dining which is not a good option unless you are traveling with friends and or family. We would never take this ship again or advise anyone else to do so. Small is nice, but it's not everything. Entertainment was good considering size of ship, but there is no real theater, only a big lounge and it's difficult to see unless you're in the front row. Shore excursions are far too expensive. Arrange your own if possible. Also, Pacific Princess was in terrible location at Malta. Big ships were on correct side of port. We had to take a terrible ferry to get to Valletta side. In Monte Carlo we had to tender and other ships did not. They said it was because we couldn't dock there which is a lie because we docked there before on a big ship. Princess seems to always get worst location. I guess they don't want to pay for better spot. We would not have done this cruise if we had known what we know now. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We are a senior couple who choose this cruise mainly for the ports which didn't disappoint. We used princess transfers before and after cruise. We also booked our flights and our cruise insurance thru them. Using princess ... Read More
We are a senior couple who choose this cruise mainly for the ports which didn't disappoint. We used princess transfers before and after cruise. We also booked our flights and our cruise insurance thru them. Using princess transfers we got to the ship early afternoon. At that time our cabin was ready. Our cabin was E320 obstructed view on deck 8 mid ship. The obstruction to the outside was minimal which made us happy. Everything was in good working order and our cabin steward, Roger was very pleasant and efficient. We always choose anytime dining as we like to meet new people. The wait for a table was not excessive. We ate in the MDR every night. The food was average, sometimes good, sometimes not so good. Did not care for the buffet, not enough choices & the same almost everyday. We always enjoy the International Cafe for a lite snack or quick lunch. Afternoon tea on sea days was a nice treat & well done. We only saw one show with the ships singer and dancers which was very entertaining. We especially enjoyed Crooners Lounge w/ an excellent piano player. We did one ship excursion to the Amalfi coast which was mediocre, at best. The were too many people & the boat was crowded. At the remaining ports,we used local guides or the HOHO buses... The service was really where Princess shined. Our luggage was lost in transit by the airlines. The passenger service desk was outstanding in tracking our luggage & getting it returned to us in a reasonable length of time. In the interim, they gave us an allowance to buy some necessities to tide us over. I must mention an outstanding supervisor @ passenger service, Vitus Patel. He was so pleasant & efficient @ a stressful time. our disembarkation was very smooth as was the embarkation. We got to the airport in plenty of time. We had a great time & even the weather was great. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
I thought the boat was nice and the cruise destinations were good, however the staff and cruise line were very uninformative. There was a change to our first port of call and we were not told at all. Hence missed out on a tour for the ... Read More
I thought the boat was nice and the cruise destinations were good, however the staff and cruise line were very uninformative. There was a change to our first port of call and we were not told at all. Hence missed out on a tour for the Amalfi coast drive not booked through the ship. Customer service of staff was appalling and the staff did not make us feel like we were welcome. everything was such a struggle. it felt like the staff did not want to be there. Part of our cruise was overrun (i mean thousands of them all from the same tour company) by non-English speaking people that also made the disembarkation from tendering and exiting the cruise liner chaotic and frankly annoying. More communication and resources for non-English speaking passengers is necessary. Don’t bother pre purchasing any beer packages as you can’t get them at the bar (which would have been an obvious place to get them) no we had to order them from room service and have them delivered to our room.???? Who wants to drink in their room or have to go back to their room to get a drink when there is a facility to get drinks from a bar. I would not choose Princess again for our cruise. When we disembarked from our ship to collect our bags one of our bags was damaged (droped, dinted and wheels broken off). the staff at the dock were not very helpfull they filled out a report for the damaged bag and sent us on our way. No appology or concirn to temporarily fix the bag to enable it to make the trip home. No one even had any tape to wrap around it. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Because we wanted to cruise around the Mediterrean and visit certain countries. The special deal was a very good offer. This was our second cruise through Princess line and really enjoyed our first so this was how we came to our ... Read More
Because we wanted to cruise around the Mediterrean and visit certain countries. The special deal was a very good offer. This was our second cruise through Princess line and really enjoyed our first so this was how we came to our decision. We opted for a balcony stateroom this time and to wake up with a different view in the morning was great. The process of embarkation was smooth and staff were wonderful. Food was good and plentiful. The speciality restaurant was very good. Downside is the decor needs sprucing up. Looking a bit shabby. The other problem was with the doona. It was a heavy doona and although we have the airconditioning up high it was very hot. Some other passengers said the same thing. We ended up removing the doona and settled with two sheets instead. The shore excursions were very good. Information was relayed to us promptly and efficiently. The entertainment was excellent! As it was on the previous cruise. Very happy with this. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Although I love cruising, I have become very disillusioned with the large cruise lines. I do not like crowds and having to wake up early to get a lounge chair or breakfast table. After doing some research into smaller cruise lines I came ... Read More
Although I love cruising, I have become very disillusioned with the large cruise lines. I do not like crowds and having to wake up early to get a lounge chair or breakfast table. After doing some research into smaller cruise lines I came across SeaDream Yacht. With only 100 passengers and 95 crew members, I thought this would be perfect. There were many interesting itineraries to choose from, but we ended up choosing a cruise that would start and end in Rome and take us to the Amalfi coast. Embarkment was a breeze. There were no lines and we were immediately greeted with refreshments in the lounge. What a relaxing way to start our trip. We enjoyed cocktails and delicious snacks before even checking in! When we were ready to check in, we simply walked to the desk, gave our names, and we were given out ID card. Our cabin was on Deck 4 and was roomy and comfortable. Plenty of storage space for our stuff. We had a large picture window, as none of the cabins on SeaDream have balconies. I definitely missed having a balcony, but we were able to be out on a deck in under a minute. The dining on the ship was incredible. There was a new chef on board during our cruise, and the food was amazing. We asked to dine outdoors, rather than in the dining room and we were given a table with the most amazing view. The food was all freshly made, high quality, unique and delicious. The service was outstanding. We chose to take several excursions through the cruise line and we were always impressed. Everything ran on time and the local guides were friendly and knowledgable. It never felt overly crowded and everything was first rate. There are a few after dinner activities each night. The casino (which consisted of one blackjack table) was open every night and people seemed to love it. There was also an open piano bar, a few nights of karaoke, a dessert extravaganza and a dance party. The upstairs bar is open late and always has good music playing. I found the other passengers to be mostly from the US, UK and Australia. Average age from late 40's to early 60's, although there were plenty of older passengers and a few families with adult children in their 20's. I found the other passengers to be interesting, smart, very friendly and I enjoyed getting to know them. I was expecting a bit of a pretension from fellow passengers, but there was none of that. Everyone I met was down to earth and thrilled to be there. Since the ship is so small, when you meet people you like, you will definitely see them again. Service throughout the ship is perfection. I do not know how they do it, but after just a day, the entire crew seemed to know our names and preferences. Even crew we hadn't interacted with, knew our names. The only special request we made was to have our minibar emptied of sodas and beer and replaced with just water and club soda. It was a small request, but it was done within the hour and kept up for the entire cruise. We had such an amazing time, we booked another cruise for next year, while we were still on the ship (you get a 15% discount if you book while still on the ship). I cannot imagine taking any other cruise line after being on the SeaDream II. They really know how to make you feel special and how to give you an unforgettable vacation. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Chose this cruise "European Spendors" because of the itinerary. Chose Holland America because of price and itinerary and because they are one of the few lines to offer KINGSIZE beds. The embarkation onto MS Koningsdam was without ... Read More
Chose this cruise "European Spendors" because of the itinerary. Chose Holland America because of price and itinerary and because they are one of the few lines to offer KINGSIZE beds. The embarkation onto MS Koningsdam was without a hitch. As suite-holders, SA7085, we had expedited boarding and our stateroom was ready as soon as we boarded. One bag arrived promptly, another, two hours later. (?) Disembarkation was equally smooth. Our cabin exceeded our expectations as far as space, storage, and amenities. There were ample electrical outlets of both the 220v and 110v variety, plus USB ports for charging. The veranda was spacious and furnished with a round table, 4 chairs, two deck chairs + ottomans. We made good use of it. The bath was large with a separate water closet, a stand-up shower with rain head and hand-held shower. There was also a whirlpool tub and two sinks. All done in beige/white marble, the entire effect was one of luxury. Loved the high-end bath products--particularly the minty bath gel. The Neptune Lounge was a HUGE perk as was the free laudry and dry cleaning. The food in the main dining room at dinner was less than inspired, being bland. Tastes vary, but this was so lacking in flavor as to be tasteless. The choices of menu were extensive. I can't imagine anyone not finding something they wanted to eat. The service was very slow. One couple missed the 8:30 entertainment twice because of poor service. We ate in the main dining room three times and then switched to the specialty restaurants: The Pinnacle Grill, The Sel de Mar, and The Tamarind. We did not use the Cannelleto because of its location on the Lido deck. It was in the midst of massive traffic at the self-serve venues and consequently very noisy. The breakfasts at the Pinnacle Grill were excellent and the service impeccable. We found the food in all the specialty restaurants to be fabulous and worth the upcharge. The service in the speciaty restaurants was equally good. One negative: THE SPA We booked spa services (couples' massage) and while the actual massages--when they got around to actually GIVING them--were adequate, we had to endure 20 minutes or more of heavy upsell for services we indicated we did not want (acupunture and a special heated gel for $50.00 a tube). I was so irritated by having to pay for 20 minutes of sales pitch taken from my 75 minute massage that we never went back, although I should have like to have had another massage and a mani-pedi. Throughout the ship, the service personnel were quick to assist and always smiling. Either this is a happy ship or Holland America has worked magic on its personnel, as they were across the board, pleasant. I wish I could say the same for some of the passengers! The majority of shore excursions we took I booked personally through private tour guides with private transportation. These were excellent and exposed the difficiencies with the tours booked through the cruise line. We took four shore excursions through Holland America. The groups were very large and the travelling time in busses exceeded the time spent viewing the sites. The busses were a mixed bag. Some were lovely and spacious with working air conditioning. Others were tight and hot. The guides were by-and-large knowledgeable but with such large groups, they had their work cut out for them. I would not recommend the HAL shore excursions for anything in depth. Go to CC roll call, scout out the posts that indicate private tours passengers have booked and are open to additional members and sign up for a small private tour. Entertainment was varied and ranged from a pleasant diversion (the magician) to fabulous (dancers and singers). I personally recommend the BBC Earth special accompanied by a live orchestra. The love lorn sloth will forever remain in my memory as comic relief. The BB King group were particularly good and another of our friends never missed the two pianos. Taken as a whole, this was a fabulous cruise and we booked another for next year. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Summary: We found the Koningsdam a very happy ship with crew who are engaging and working very hard with and for you to make your cruise enjoyable. We do like the ship and size and overall do not feel that it is too big and ‘feel’ the ... Read More
Summary: We found the Koningsdam a very happy ship with crew who are engaging and working very hard with and for you to make your cruise enjoyable. We do like the ship and size and overall do not feel that it is too big and ‘feel’ the crowds, except embarkation/disembarkation and on peak times in the Lido (as discussed many times previously by other reviews). We felt high numbers of tourists also at several touristic destinations and this had also an influence on our own visiting experience. For example by trying to place orders on busy side walk cafés or simply just to walk around (more details per destination). May I add that we remain surprised that cruise passengers felt the urge to cut into lines during peak times and during disembarkation. When the gangway entrance was roped off so that a proper line was formed, passengers trying to cut lines and even dare to jump over the rope in order to save waiting time. Front office staff had to step in to sort out and even needed to police persons and shout at them to behave properly. This review is focused on not so common review topics and hope this way to add other information other topics than usually reviewed: Route/Voyage: this route of 12 days is offered less often as the sailing is set from Rome to Amsterdam along European ports which are frequented less often with stops in Barcelona, Valencia, Cartagena, Gibraltar, Cadiz, Lisbon, Vigo, Cherbourg and Zeebrugge. As only 2 sea days were included, we decided that in some ports we would not travel far away and to stay within the town of the port. We do not purchase ship’s excursions, simply because we want to experience the visiting destinations as much as possible. Sometimes we included some shopping but please remember that most Mediterranean family shops will close for lunch somewhere between 13.00 – 16.00 hours, unless they only focus on tourists. Department stores as El Corte Inglés will remain open during the entire day. Passengers: there was a great mix of nationalities and I believe the mix due was extra diverse due its unique route. Along passengers from North America, who were being still in the majority, a large group of Australian (400 persons), Asian and European passengers were cruising along, which makes the atmosphere on board vibrant & alive. Embarkation: Instead of putting your luggage away yourself at the dock, we asked help from the porter service, which prevented us to joining a queue and save some time. We are 3 star mariner and received a check in and boarding number 2. As we arrived at the terminal 11.15 hours, we actually could check in right away and waited 15 mts to board. The terminal in Civitavecchia is a makeshift terminal/tent and there is no bridge to the ship. Because it rained and there is no cover walking on to the ship, umbrellas were provided to walk over to the ship. Food & Beverage/Dining: Tamarind is always really very nice and still our favourite, its location is on deck 10 aft with pool and wake views and such gracious service: surprisingly never too busy, while you are treated very royally and the ship’s best food is served?! Is the US$ 25 surcharge an obstacle or is Pan Asian cuisine more unknown than the Pinnacle Grill with a similar surcharge? MDR service and food was excellent, many waiters/waitresses showed a funny & kind personality inter-acting with the guests! At the Lido the staff tries so hard to cope with the high demand on peak times but due to its design, it is very challenging to provide excellent service. On top of that the Lido dining chairs weigh so much, you hardly can slide a chair in/out underneath of the table, which makes it clumsy for buffet style restaurant, where need to go quickly in/out of a table many times during your meal. For breakfast we returned to the same buffet corner where the same culinary staff was cooking. They remembered our preferences and had them ready when we would walk up. Our ‘secret’ and more quiet lunch place became the NY Deli & Pizza (deck 10), where there was hardly any wait for sandwiches, pizza’s or even salads, all freshly made within minutes. I sneaked in the Dive In to collect some French fries to eat along (it is a vacation after all!). When I went for an ice-cream, I happily paid extra at Gelato (US$ 2.00 for 3 scoops) but there was no sugar free ice-cream available. So I decided to try the normal icecream at the Lido on another day. Lido offered no-sugar-added ice-cream for free. Dutch Grand Café: a nice solution for little snacks or coffee in a pleasant setting. Along the snacks offered also some typical Dutch delicacies. Coffee is differently made here (much stronger) and to our taste, the coffee on Explorations Café was the best, as the milk is foamed by steamer by hand versus any other heated milk coming out of any machine. Our sommelier recommend the “Wine Maker’s Dinner” served in the Culinary Arts Centre at US$ 89 p.p. (incl. no extra 15% service charge): it is a 7 course dinner with matching (Chateau Ste. Michelle) wines ánd upon arrival an additional alcoholic based aperitive. Two remarks only: too much alcohol offered, (yes I know it supposed to be wine-pairing, but how much can you take even on a vacation?) and why are all Chateau Ste. Michelle wines require blending to make/become a drinkable wine? Last but not least two special treats: on the second Sea Day a delightful & complete afternoon tea was served with live music in the Queen’s Lounge, waiters decked out in white dinner jackets with white gloves and re-appeared in the late evening with little chocolate treats on deck 2 in the Music Walk area (so much better than these chocolate fountains). And because it was Mother’s Day on disembarkation, all women received a little chocolate treat to take home at the exit. Bars & Lounges: visited Ocean Bar and Crow’s Nest mostly for drinks, tried also Panorama Bar (no atmosphere). Staff was great & friendly, remembered favourite drink orders and offered little hors d’oeuvres. If you order a tomato juice than the bar will charge you differently (juice US$ 3.00) than when ask them to add tobacco and angostura bitter (cocktail virgin mary US$ 9.00, which is the same price incl. wodka). However the mocktails are only priced around US$ 5.00. Activities: Behind the scenes ship’s talk and/or walk: Captain Darin Bowland and Hotel Director Charles Verwaal presented at the second Sea Day a talk in the theatre more background about the ship & staff. These two gentlemen were great speakers and shared very interested details but also entertained us in a gracious and sometimes funny way. Both Captain & Hotel Director left the ship in Amsterdam: Captain Bowland will dedicate his time now only on the Nieuw Statendam, as he has the experience with delivering the Koningsdam. The singers & dancers also held with Cruise Director Ben Yates in the same day a talk about the shows in the morning, held also at the theatre and provided inside information how shows are put together and offered a behind the scenes back stage. Spa: although the massage treatment I was provided for in a very professional way, the bill ended up with an amount of US$ 200 (incl. service charge): this is really excessive! The Spa refuses to accept treatment less than 70 minutes and focus on hard-selling treatment for 70 or preferably 90 minutes only! During the entire cruise at the Lido pool is a Spa promotion booth located and there always were at least 3 Spa attendants present trying to push Spa services (no wonder?!). Sailing with open forward deck 5: on some sailings towards the destination and its arrival in port, forward deck 5 was opened (with a jacuzzi) and provided excellent views. Also staff was present to sell some beverages and offered a mimosa (US$ 3.00) during lunch time. IT and WiFi: The Navigator app works and WiFi work well around the ship until one evening IT problems arose where the entire ship did not function with IT related services. The entire crew had to adjust from working with PCs (reception) or tablet typing orders (restaurants & bars) to traditional paper & pen. In fact the captain delayed the ship’s departure for a few hours as IT needed to work properly in the outlets and on the bridge before we could leave port properly. WiFi worked again and on the last day before embarkation a similar IT problem occurred and the Navigotor app became unavailable along with the bill printer services in the main lobby. Staff could access the bills fortunately via their own system. Entertainment: each ‘entertainer’ works very hard to play live and perform: whether it was classical music, piano music, band related, or singing/dancing, it was always well presented by energetic talented people. The number ship’s shows on our 12 days journey existed of a total of 6 ship’s productions (incl. the first show which introduces the passengers to all different entertainment during the voyage). These shows are supported by pre-recorded music and/or a live band plays and of course the Planet Earth II show with all musicians playing live during the special created film. On 5 other nights guest stars presented themselves on stage with comedy, music or illusion. Personally we enjoy best the ship’s shows as these are more vibrant but that is a personal preference. The theatre seating capacity does not reflect the need & interest of the passengers: some shows are offered 3 times and others 2 times where one time the theatre is overflowing and passengers are sent way as there no seats left and other times the theatre has many empty seats. Personally we think it has to do not only with the interest but also if there are early excursions planned the next morning? During some shows (dancing) the full stage is used and for other shows the extra round piece of stage is taken away and extra seats are placed instead. The led wall enhances the performances especially the ship’s shows make full use of it. We were not impressed with the British Cruise Director Ben Yates, he needed to read out special messages or share information/update messages from a piece of paper while addressing the passengers seated in the theatre prior/post a performance in the theatre. Also many times he would express his mood and say many times “Good Stuff”. Personally I believe that such comments can be shared in a pub surrounded with your local mates in Great Britain, but it do not reflect the grandeur the elegant Koningsdam ship. Disembarkation: it was not a pretty sight where too many passengers trying to walk off and it seemed nearly all at once. Not all passengers are as well behaved as explained before. Nevertheless it was a nice cruise. Ports of call: We arrange our own transport and hardly use ship’s excursions as besides the financial advantage, it provides a fun way of learning more and engaging with the locals. As a European citizen I have access to data on my mobile phone and although I looked up many public transport possibilities in advance, via the infamous google search engine I can look up in most destination the current timing of local transport and how I can walk the rest of the journey on foot. Barcelona: we bought entrée tickets with a confirmed slot time to the Picasso Museum and unfortunately the museum closed that day due to a strike. We took the port shuttle from the ship’s D terminal (€ 5 p.p.) to the World Trade Centre. Inside the terminal these tickets were sold by an independent company and were using brand new busses. From WTC it is walking distance to Ramblas and other attractions. We took bus D20 with a stop around the corner and leaving every 15 minutes and 6 stops to Pla de Palau and then another walk into the Gothic district. We stayed & enjoyed in the Gothic district and eventually walked back all the way to WTC (via Ramblas). Ramblas (and the city in general) is getting very overcrowded, if you walk the smaller side streets, you will see more of the true city. Barcelona overall is overcrowded with tourists and local people are also getting fetup with tourism and it can show. Valencia: transport from the port is also selling here tickets for an independent shuttle from the port to city centre (€ 10 p.p.) but as the price of local taxis is not too high and the distance is reasonable, you can also skip the long queue (buying tickets from one window) and pay about € 9,00 one way, it is no brainer! Valencia is the inventor of the paella and many local restaurants gladly serve you individual portions and you are obliged to order one large pan for the entire table. The terminal could not handle well the volume of passengers either. Oceania Riviera was docked too and when all passengers were returning, it was too much and long lines appeared quickly. Cartagena: we docked as the only ship and walked into town and all is walkable. Koningsdam was the only ship and immediately the experience becomes a different. There is a Roman theatre opposite the port, which you can see a little from the steps opposite the port (for free), or walk into the museum (for a fee). The town hall is a beautiful building and provides tours during the day incl. Saturday. Great local shops with excellent bargains (clothes) and offer that when a large cruise ship is town, most shops will remain open. Everywhere are dotted around little restaurants and outside terraces. There is a tourist bus service which drives around from the street across the port to some of the highlights around the town and next to this bus stop is also a train (pulled by a car) offering a route focused more in the city centre. The tour of the bus a bigger/longer and also stops 2X where you are able to get off to have look. The second stop takes you to a lovely little beach. Make sure of the frequency of the next service! As our day stop was on May 5, a Fiesta was held and the twon was buzzing due to little street festivals (music along with food & drink stalls) and the locals were all dressed up in stunning dresses and suites. You really had the feeling that the locals welcomed the passengers and looking back, this became the best port experience from this cruise as it was real and unique. Gibraltar: we took the local bus #3 to the cable car. The bus stop is walking distance from the port, passing the statue with passengers & luggage. Bus #10 also goes there. Bus fare can be bought in Euros or Pounds inside the bus and it a day ticket costs very little. Outside the terminal plenty of taxis offer a service to drive you up/down and there is also a tour agent selling the transfer in minivans including entrance to the cable car. We pre-booked cable car tickets online so we had a quicker access to the top and have priority of other clients with no pre-booking and the local bus was quick & easy. Cable car service will be upgraded in 2020 and services improved. Now persons with mobility challenges need to walk now certain steps/staircases before entering or exiting the actual cable car. Once arrived on the top within 6 minutes, views are great. Stay inside the little restaurant (glass building) if you decide to eat or drink, otherwise the monkeys will jump at you and take it away in a flash. We saw two persons being attacked and it was not funny. The bus stop to return back is across the parking lot and walk underneath the little bridge/tunnel. Duty free shops in the terminal were great value and compared to other airport or ships duty free prices about 25% lower! If you like to walk, walk to town and cable car: it is about 25 minutes’ walk and expect some height difference during your walk. Cadiz: free port shuttle will take you off the official port area and brought us to the gate and mini terminal. As QM2 was also present with Seaborn Quest along with Windstar and Seadream I, Cadiz was overflowing with passengers along with other regular tourists, visitors and locals. The normally narrow streets & squares were overflown and we did not enjoy this. We escaped the mass to walk the seafront where is more space and enjoyed the stunning views of the skyline (looks like Havanna in Cuba and therefore a James Bond film was shot here instead). Also a visit to the impressive cathedral was great and for € 6 an audio tour was provided. Upon return the little mini terminal had to cope with the security check of large number of passengers. Lisbon: we docked at the newest facility: Jardim do Tabaco and is located in the northern part of the city, and it’s the closest to the city centre. Walking distance is 20 minutes. As Lisbon is a large town and built over different hills (stunning views) along the lovely embankment parks and monumental buildings, we opted to rent a little car. There are also e-bikes or tuktuk services available or the large double decker busses Hopon/off. As the city centre has many narrow streets, the large busses are not able to go there. So we choose the car service, this provided us a way to see more in the short amount of time and as GPS is part of the rental service, you will receive an education along your ride! I tried to contact 3 different companies and only one called Lisbon Eco Tours provided the best possible service and were extremely customer focused & professional. They offer to rent a Renault Twizy and it is a fun car and completely electric, runs up to 80 km p/hr and takes easily two adults up the hill. We had plenty of stops and alternated our tour where we needed to change it. As there is a lot of traffic, you just need to follow other traffic and it is actually not intimidating at all. Expect to become an attraction yourself as many people will take a photo. After the 4 hour tour with stops, we had lunch at a local restaurant (taken there by our request by the owners of the company) and ordered the typical local food & wine. I would do this any time again whenever I will return to Lisbon. Also Lisbon is spread out with lots of public space (parks & squares), we did not feel squeezed into the city, although the city attracted many visitors. Locals are really open, friendly and welcoming. Vigo: we registered for a tour of the town by a local operator called tours4cruises.com: € 17 per person for a 1,5 tour with stops at the beach, a lovely museum / stately home and on the highest viewing point. As this tour has a personal guide, the quality of the information is excellent and plenty of time to ask for questions. If you reserve in advance pay one euro via PayPal, they will keep your seat(s) in your bus reserved, which is a very nice gesture as many people again are trying to block seats while entering the bus. The port also faces a shopping mall (half empty) but connects via a walking bridge to a higher floor to the old city centre. As this town is extremely hilly, you can literally zoom up the escalators and cross the street via the man-made bridge. Town is pretty and due to its northern location it is a little greener. The beach along the Atlantic is pretty and there is an island not far away which won the award of best European beach. Certainly a town to revisit again. Cherbourg: this town is a sleeping with a port for ferries to the UK. As we decided not to travel away and made reservations with a local restaurant listed in the Gault Millau Guide: Le Vauban. A restaurant run by a married couple and it was a delight! Special 3 course lunch, half a bottle of Chablis, coffees & chocolates and an aperitive with little snacks for € 70 per person. We dined happily along the locals in a full restaurant. The port offers a bus shuttle to take passengers to a nearby shopping mall (again not fully used) and from there you can cross a little river via bridge and walk into town or take an other little train around the place. We walked to the city centre within 15 minutes. Some very typical French shops offering local fruit & veg, wines, cheese, breads, ready to take away for a little picnic. Zeebrugge: as Zeebrugge has not much to offer we looked at various options. A local tram (#10) passes the gates of the port enroute to the seaside town of Knokke in less than 40 minutes. Than of course the famous town of Brugge is there and can be reached by train or port shuttle. The train can be reached by the port shuttle (free) to the station and is the least expensive option for around €7 per person return ticket and train journey is 20 minutes. We choose the cruise-express.be for €20 per person. The shuttle picks you up outside the port gates and runs every half hour. Train & cruise express bus stop close to each other as the train station and bus parking are nearly next to each other. Everyone is required to walk into the city via a beautiful park. As Brugge is a historic city with hardly any access by car or bus, expect to walk a longer distance to reach the town. Than the old streets are cobbled stoned and very hard to walk on and nearly impossible tp push children’s prams, wheelchairs or walkers. The town was extremely busy and on top of its regular visitors, it was a Bank Holiday weekend and a couple of ships were in port: Costa, Brittania (P&O) and us. Besides little boat tours on the local canals, the roads are used to allow visitors to walk on but are shared with bikers, horse & carriage, few taxis and small hop on/off busses. Than through it woven in are large groups led with guides, who try to remain together as much as possible. We are able bodies persons and we just gave it all up. We sat down for a drink when we found a spot (by luck) and decided to return and leave the stunning town the thousands of others. We will be back when it is less busy. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
My wife and I booked 10 days Med cruise from Rome to Barcelona starting April 28, 2018. Two years ago we did British Isles cruise on Caribbean Princess and were satisfied with food, staff, entertainment etc. But this time on Crown Princess ... Read More
My wife and I booked 10 days Med cruise from Rome to Barcelona starting April 28, 2018. Two years ago we did British Isles cruise on Caribbean Princess and were satisfied with food, staff, entertainment etc. But this time on Crown Princess things were not so good,though embarkation was fast and easy. I attached 2 tags to each suitcase to find out latter that one suitcase is not delivered to my cabin due to both missing tags. As soon as we had entered our cabin we discovered that cabin assigned for us by Princess, has in fact two additional bunk beds on the walls and as a result our double bed had restricted passageways on both sides. I immediately complained to customer service supervisor who has a smell of alcohol in his breath and he had assured in a rude manner that this is exactly what I booked, period. I also requested to be connected with Customer Relations but was told that ship doesn't have telephone connection with headquarters at the moment. Unfortunately I did not choose the cabin at the time of booking because Princess as a part of promotion package promised to upgrade the cabin location and had chosen cabin E516 for 4 persons (2 bunk beds) just above Crooner bar, so we can "enjoy" music till 11PM. Just to mention I had a major spinal cord surgery a year ago which made it difficult for me to go around 12" protruded Bunk bed. Whilst complaining about cabin, I found my luggage at the reception desk missing all two tags I attached to it?! The food and entertainment were below average. During mooring at Kotor Bay the ship was dragged by strong wind dangerously close to the shore and listed, hitting sea bottom. Local captain then helped to move ship away from shore and in Corfu divers checked the ship for possible problems. Fortunately we were able to make it to Barcelona. Waiting staff was mostly nice and helpful, cabin was cleaned regularly and on time. Front desk staff was helpful especially Odeth (Mexico) she tried to help us with our cabin problem but management apparently was not concerned at all. I did not take any shore excursions, I planned to take because Princess increased internet prices about 20 days before the cruise. It cost me much less for more to use local Salerno Ferris from Piazza Concordia to explore most of Amalfi Coast without problem. One with better mobility could even explore Sorrento as well. As to other ports of call we found another couple to share taxi rides/ personal excursions with us which was cost/time more effective. In terms of fitness the ship has very small area on upper level for running and walking, the other ships designed better, though one might walk at the Promenade area Deck 7. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
While this is not my first time cruising, it was my first time on Princess. I have to say the service, staff and food were all exceptional. The staff was the most attentive of any cruise I have been on and seemed like there were a lot ... Read More
While this is not my first time cruising, it was my first time on Princess. I have to say the service, staff and food were all exceptional. The staff was the most attentive of any cruise I have been on and seemed like there were a lot more staff on this cruise than I have encountered on other cruise lines. The entertainment was adequate, but nothing that stood out. Of course, we were not on the ship for entertainment, but to see the wonderful sights in Europe. We chose not to do any excursions through Princess so can't comment on that. We did several through outside tour companies. The embarkation and disembarkation was extremely quick, easy and painless. I was shocked at how easy it went on both ends. The only complaint is that the speaker system on the ship was not good and was very hard to hear any announcements, including when the Captain would give details on upcoming ports, etc. I would definitely recommend Princess and look forward to experiencing another cruise with Princess in the future. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We haven't cruised for nearly 30 years so it was interesting to see how cruising in general had changed. We chose this particular cruise and cruise line because of the ports of call and the timing. We decided that 10 nights was ... Read More
We haven't cruised for nearly 30 years so it was interesting to see how cruising in general had changed. We chose this particular cruise and cruise line because of the ports of call and the timing. We decided that 10 nights was enough for us and by night 10 we were right. We were told onboard by other passengers that this cruise was a 'repositioning cruise' so 'don't expect too much in entertainment'. We didn't know this but it was true. We were expecting more guest lecturers, workshops etc that we used to have in previous cruises but the only lectures or seminars were ones where the crew tried to sell things. Having said that we loved the cruise, the ship, the ports of call, the food....everything. The ship was very clean and impressive. Needs more signage though - kept getting lost. Our cabin - inside and low down the ship because of movement - was suitable for our needs. Great wardrobe space and very comfortable beds. No problem there. I liked the fact that we could chose 'anytime dining'. Some times we just had a bowl of soup from one of the cafes. We didn't join in with the formal nights but that's ok we just went to other places for dinner. Horizons was superb, loved the International Cafe for a great coffee and cake after a day's sightseeing and the other restaurants were top class. As I said, not much in the entertainment but we only had 3 'at sea' days and we just wanted to relax. The spa was great - I joined the thermal suite for the cruise and it gave me a place to relax away from the general population. Service was spot on. Everyone seemed to be genuine in their greetings and happy to be there. Excursions were a little on the shallow side and expensive for what they were. Many of them entailed a great deal of coach time to get to places - Rome, Florence and Paris - so that made for a rather long and exhausting day. Yes we are planning another cruise and yes we would cruise with Sapphire Princess again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We wanted to see more Western Mediterranean Islands and Ports ... so many including Malta, Sicily, Sadinia.Maliga, Velencia, Cartigena and it's alway good to return to Barcelonia. The smaller cruise ship was nice and our cabin was ... Read More
We wanted to see more Western Mediterranean Islands and Ports ... so many including Malta, Sicily, Sadinia.Maliga, Velencia, Cartigena and it's alway good to return to Barcelonia. The smaller cruise ship was nice and our cabin was close to every thing. We had a balcony cabin and enjoyed the sunrises and sunsets. The cabin was very efficient and the roomserice was very good. Adrian brought us breakfast every morning which we enjoyed. The staff of the Spirit were great and privided good service. The entertainment in the Stardust Theater was pretty good and the dancers and singers were very good. We enjoyed meals in three specialty restaurants and the dining was great. The Buffet was a buffet and always available. The staff from the Cruise Next were knowedgeable and accommodating. Also we stayed 3 nights in Rome before our cruise and was great as well. We stayed at the Hotel California and really enjoyed our room and free breakfast there. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
I only chose to do this cruise last minute because of the great deal I got but wow it was great to be back on this lovely ship. She is small to medium size, only 2000 passengers, which makes it large enough for you to have space when ... Read More
I only chose to do this cruise last minute because of the great deal I got but wow it was great to be back on this lovely ship. She is small to medium size, only 2000 passengers, which makes it large enough for you to have space when you want but small enough for you to feel the intimacy. She is also one of the better looking of the Norwegian ships. My cabin, a balcony, was adequate though I would not want to try and fit 3 people into it and as usual the bathroom area was tight. What was usual about this trip was even though it was mid November it was warm and sunny enough for me to use the balcony which was small and only had seats. Food was great thoughout the ship and I used all venues except sushi. My only complaint was windows as this venue is directly below the theatre and if the production is on while your seated it is very hard to have a conversation with people around your table. NCL do a great job with their solo travellers, one of the major reasons I use them, and this cruise was no different. We had a lovely group and our host was friendly and helpful. My only real down side was that some of the ports are so large that when I look out I am daunted by the length of the walk to get to the buses/taxis especially now that I am getting older and my mobility is lessening. I wish sometimes they would provide those little buggies you see at some airports. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
I choose this cruise because dates and ports were as i exactly planned, every thing was smooth from the begging , call center staff were really helpful -Easy check in no crowds, we checked in at 12:00 and departure was at 5:00 pm ... Read More
I choose this cruise because dates and ports were as i exactly planned, every thing was smooth from the begging , call center staff were really helpful -Easy check in no crowds, we checked in at 12:00 and departure was at 5:00 pm -Cabins very clean, Cleaning is continuously day & night -Staff are amazing, very nice , helpful and friendly -Complimentary dining was really good, many options, Chinese, international, American, Indian etc -Multi entertainments some are good and some are not in my interest -I didn't like the shore excursions offers too expensive & not attractive -WiFi packages are really expensive -I really loved each place we visited- easy going out and coming in (in each port) They are really organised I really recommend this cruise to every one I m sure ill travel again with NCL soon This will not be the last I hope this is helpful Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary for the Meditterrean. This was my 12th cruise and 3rd cruise with Norwegian. I was very disappointed in the ship. The crew was not very friendly - rude at times. All onboard activities and ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary for the Meditterrean. This was my 12th cruise and 3rd cruise with Norwegian. I was very disappointed in the ship. The crew was not very friendly - rude at times. All onboard activities and beverages were very expensive. The service was ok but there was nothing personal about the service. We only saw our cabin steward twice, but our cabin was clean. The entertainment was mediocre when compared to my other cruises. Many shore excursions were cancelled after having been reserved with no alternatives offered. There seemed to be a great deal of disorganization when embarking and disembarking at the ports. Directions were not clear. Crew members did not seem to be able to answer questions. You always got the response that it was not there area. We visited with many people onboard the ship, and I know that my observations were the same as other passengers. I would not cruise on this ship again and am not sure I will cruise with Norwegian again. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Just returned from my E. Mediterranean cruise on the Spirit. I choose this cruise specifically for the ports. I flew into Rome two days early. I organized two shared shuttles with Civitavecchia Shuttle Express. They arrived on time both ... Read More
Just returned from my E. Mediterranean cruise on the Spirit. I choose this cruise specifically for the ports. I flew into Rome two days early. I organized two shared shuttles with Civitavecchia Shuttle Express. They arrived on time both times. The boarding process was quick and smooth. I thought the ship was fine, for me this is just a mode of transportation to get from port to the next. I've never been on any of the new mega ships. I actually like these smaller ships just fine. The food in the MDR was not that great, went in there three times then decided to just stick with the buffet and ate at Shoguns twice which was great. The buffet will have themed nights like grill extravaganza, oriental, seafood, Mediterranean. The food was good, I think at this level of cruise that is what your going to get it's not gourmet. The first stop Mykonos we had to tender off the ship, it took about 1.5 hours due to the wind picking up and being on tender number 12. We just waked around this port DIY. Athens you walk right off the ship the hop & off buses are out of the terminal to the right. Took the H&O bus into Athens I had already been here so I went to the Ancient Agora, Plaka, and walked a little then back on the H&O bus. Ancient Agora was very cool. Rhodes you can walk right off the ship and cross the street to the Medieval Town, DIY here too. Palace of Grand Masters is closed on Mondays so that was a bummer. Santorini I'd been here before I rented a car and did my own thing didn't want to be rushed around by a tour guide. Crete there are local buses waiting to take you into town, DIY here too. Went to the Maritime Museum just a few euros the main one is the red two story to the left of the waterfront. Valletta we went on an excursion with Malta Private Guide they did a great job. Sicily we went on a shared excursion here too with Sicily w/ Mario. Naples another shared excursion with AP Tours "Full Amalfi Coast" both this port and Sicily were nice but to get to these places it's such a long drive. But they were gorgeous. I had a great time even it rained in Mykonos, Sicily and my last day in Rome. I will cruise again with NCL, actually already have a Carribbean cruise paid for with them and gave a deposit while I was on this cruise because they match it dollar for dollar. It's always sad to have to leave the ship and come back to reality. Had a great time. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We chose a European cruise as a way of seeing this part of the world for the first time. This was our second cruise, our first with Norwegian. Embarkation and disembarkation was very easy and better than our experience cruising with ... Read More
We chose a European cruise as a way of seeing this part of the world for the first time. This was our second cruise, our first with Norwegian. Embarkation and disembarkation was very easy and better than our experience cruising with Carnival. The ship was clean and well maintained. It was modern as well. We were on the 13th floor on the very back of the boat with a balcony room. Our room was very nice, and I'd highly recommend spending the little bit extra for a room with a balcony. The views were amazing. We found favorite bartenders - Nestor, Norman, and Vladamir. They made excellent drinks the entire cruise, came to know us by name and what we liked to drink, and were overall friendly. The bartenders at the Wave bar by the pool did not make good drinks and lacked any kind of personality. This was disappointing since the pool area is usually the "party" area. The buffet and restaurant food was good. Although, we were disappointed in the restaurant breakfast. We received a couples massage which was fantastic but did not utilize any of the spa amenities so I can't comment on those. The onboard activities were better than those on Carnival and kept us entertained. Shopping was limited. Our excursions weren't great, and the days were long but they were still worth doing for the chance to see some historical sites. We'd greatly recommend Pompeii and Flavors of Sorrento. Overall, we would not choose to do this type of cruise again, it was a little more hectic than it was relaxing, and will probably continue trying new cruise lines to find one to fit our needs. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
We chose this cruise for the itinerary and balcony pricing. Having cruised on many cruise lines we tend to feel that Norwegian is trying to do to cruising what low cost airlines are doing to flying, charging for every little thing, As ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary and balcony pricing. Having cruised on many cruise lines we tend to feel that Norwegian is trying to do to cruising what low cost airlines are doing to flying, charging for every little thing, As in example, We had received the ultimate drink package and free WiFi as a promotion, however, water and coffee bar was not included, It had been on another cruise line Room Service now has a $7.95 charge , we never experienced this before! A can of soda from the mini bar cost 10.95 !, Really? Rooms have been redone however very small. We were constantly on the balcony when one of us was getting dressed On a positive note, Staff was excellent , food was decent and coming on board embarkation was a breeze Itinerary was very good, Majorca on the original itinerary was cancelled and substituted for Marselle which was basically a port city. I know this would require logistics but Norwegian may want to consider 2 days in port such as Livorno, with so much to see there it could easily be a 2 day stay Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
Excellent package which included meals, all premium drinks, entertainment, tips and service charges. The staff are second to none, so polite, kind, friendly and attentive. The ship is very 'American' which is a bit of a culture ... Read More
Excellent package which included meals, all premium drinks, entertainment, tips and service charges. The staff are second to none, so polite, kind, friendly and attentive. The ship is very 'American' which is a bit of a culture shock to a UK person. The food offerings were very American with lots of grilled stuff, massive portions and not much veg on offer. As a veggie I found it hard to find options. The entertainment was spectacular. Priscilla of the Desert and Burn the Floor are superb. Unfortunately we couldn't book for the other shows because they were full. We ate in the speciality restaurants - La Cucina is a good Italian restaurant but in a very strange place. You have to walk through the buffet area to get to it. It lacked in atmosphere although the food was good. Cagneys was very beautiful but once again lacked atmosphere, Teppanyaki was brilliant - absolutely fantastic floor show and eating experience. The main dining room, Manhattan, was exceptional. Service from every member of staff throughout the ship was perfect. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
Our cruise was a short cruise of just 3 nights. We had to sail on Thursday and arrive at the port of Sunday. Thursday night we should have boarded the ship at 4.00pm but due to some problems that the cruise had which we understand that ... Read More
Our cruise was a short cruise of just 3 nights. We had to sail on Thursday and arrive at the port of Sunday. Thursday night we should have boarded the ship at 4.00pm but due to some problems that the cruise had which we understand that problems do occur we boarded the ship at 10.00pm. I would have pretended to have a kind of compensation for missing 6 hours on a short stay holiday. Even if it was a voucher for one of the paying restaurants or just a kind note but nothing of this was done. Another issue that we didn't like is that everything goes dead at midnight no music accept at the disco. I was travelling with my mum who is 60 year old and disco is not an ideal place for her, I would have loved to hear piano music or some kind of music with her after midnight, than ending up at the casino. Even during the day there should be some stations where nice music can be played or for example at the evening dinning. The shows at the theater are lovely and have nothing to say about this. Be careful though on the bills at the end of your stay. I was charged for a coffee that I didn't take and sign for, when I went to the customer care I was left waiting there and gave up. Also when I purchased a gift from the gift area I asked the salesgirl how much will it cost in Euros for the third time she answered Eur33.00 when I was charged Euro 40.00 she didn't mention that there was another charge. At the casino it was quite fair when I paid they told me that there is going to be a charge of 3% but its better to be informed than finding extra amount on your bill. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
2017 is our 30th wedding anniversary, so we had our eyes open for something special to celebrate. Top of the list was a Mediterranean Cruise, having cruised on the Celebrity Solstice for our 25th. That is when a timely offer came via ... Read More
2017 is our 30th wedding anniversary, so we had our eyes open for something special to celebrate. Top of the list was a Mediterranean Cruise, having cruised on the Celebrity Solstice for our 25th. That is when a timely offer came via email and we immediately said yes, even though it was on NCL, which we had not sailed before. (Two Celebrity, two Princess, one RCI and one Carnival.). It was also by far the oldest ship we had sailed, and the smallest. Reviews were mixed, but the itinerary was excellent. The booking also included the beverage package , and four specialty dining reservations. All in all we signed up with limited expectations. The ship well exceeded these expectations. We stayed the night before the cruise at a Civitavechia Hotel, leaving less than five minutes to walk to the free shuttle bus to the ship the next morning. Embarkation was painless, smoothly handled and we were on board and in our stateroom before noon. The ship is older for sure, but well maintained and quite charming. Dining rooms were very nice, the food was quite good and sometimes excellent. We have never done specialty restaurants before, but with four included we enjoyed them this time. Tops was Le Bistro, followed by Cagney's Steak House - both very good. Having spent a few days in Italy before the cruise let's just say the Italian restaurant, La Trattoria was okay. Teppanyaki, the Japanese steak house was exactly as expected. We are not much for the production shows, but found the house band to be well above average as was the Latino duo. Bars were good, especially Shanghai due to Ray, the best bartender on board. (Or so I heard!). We especially enjoyed the Promenade Deck 7 - something rare or not at all on newer ships. Four laps around is two and a quarter kilometres. Now to our balcony suite 10670. The stateroom is smaller than most we have seen, but quite comfortable. The small balcony served its purpose. Then there is the bathroom, with a decent shower, but a ridiculous door to the toilet side - it makes for an area too tight for its intended use and I am just 5' 10. NCL -- tear down this door! This was a 10 night cruise out of Rome - Civitavechia. Ports were all excellent, focusing on the Greek Isles. There were two disappointments - one planned and one not. We had just a too short stop in Crete from 7 am and back on board by 11:30. That is not enough time to do much of anything. Worse yet, with everyone back on board the ship sat with a mechanical issue for the next nine a half hours. That meant we had a very short night visit to Valletta, Malta the next evening about 7:30 to 11:30. A shame! Despite that setback, this was an excellent cruise, in a well maintained older ship, and an excellent crew. Recommended. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017

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