117 Seattle Norwegian Bliss Cruise Reviews

High marks for Norwegian Cruise Line! The ship was wonderful, the service was very good, and the scenery was tremendous. It was a great way for my wife and I to celebrate our 25th anniversary. A few minor annoyances worth noting: 1) There ... Read More
High marks for Norwegian Cruise Line! The ship was wonderful, the service was very good, and the scenery was tremendous. It was a great way for my wife and I to celebrate our 25th anniversary. A few minor annoyances worth noting: 1) There aren't enough elevators for a ship this large, so plan on waiting several minutes before one becomes available; 2) Every time you walk onto the ship or into a dining area, a staff member with hand sanitizer will chant, "Washy, washy, happy, happy," which gets old quickly; 3) The daily menus for the main dining rooms aren't posted in the on-board app or shown on one of the ship's informational TV channels, so you won't know what's being served until you go to the restaurants; 4) Specialty restaurants are VERY expensive, with prices significantly higher than other cruise lines; 5) The ship was only in the Ketchikan and Victoria ports for about 4 hours each, which doesn't leave much time for sightseeing -- not to mention that we didn't arrive in Victoria until 8 p.m., when it was dark and places of interest were closing. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We chose Bliss after watching you-tube reviews and we really wanted to experience the variety of choices on a large ship. So many voices explained how much they were blown away by the vibe and sophistication of Norwegian Bliss. We were ... Read More
We chose Bliss after watching you-tube reviews and we really wanted to experience the variety of choices on a large ship. So many voices explained how much they were blown away by the vibe and sophistication of Norwegian Bliss. We were not let down. We expected the 6-7-8 Ocean Place to be a little more dramatic but we loved the Waterfront on deck 8, the massive observation area on deck 15, and the tremendous variety of food in the Garden Café (buffet), The cruise director staff, the food service staff, and the steward for our stateroom 13850, Charles, were all magnificent. We loved the washy-washy girls singing about coffee every morning and Alex, the assistant cruise director, was absolutely the best and kept us laughing. We especially loved the international crew talent show and the introduction of so many staff members following. We felt as though we were leaving god friends and the last day was quite emotional. I can't say enough good about the Norwegian Bliss and its staff. If I needed to address anything negative, it would be that the weather forced the cancellation of the Ketchikan visit. The prices are a bit ridiculous in the on board shops and I think there should be a little more variety in snacks and items for your stateroom. We didn't have the specialty dining package but we didn't need it. With 5 dining options included, between the buffet open all day, three very elegant primary dining venues, and a 24 hour pub on deck 7 surrounding the atrium, who needs the specialty dining option? We are already looking ahead to find a cruise on the Bliss that we can join next year if possible. we sprung for the CruiseNext deal where we purchased eight $250 credits ($2000) and Norwegian paid $1000 toward this trip's bill. That being said, we are now somewhat committed to 4 cruises over 6 years and we fully intend to make at least one of those the Bliss. 330 meters long, 168,000 tons, 20 decks high. What can I say? Bliss baby, Bliss. It was the bomb. A trip to never forget. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We did the 7 week cruise to Alaska out of Seattle. We had a very diverse crowd (an 80 year old woman who needs a wheelchair/cane to get around for distances longer than one minute, a 60 year old woman who also had a difficult time walking, ... Read More
We did the 7 week cruise to Alaska out of Seattle. We had a very diverse crowd (an 80 year old woman who needs a wheelchair/cane to get around for distances longer than one minute, a 60 year old woman who also had a difficult time walking, a 32 year old male, and a 22 year old male) and overall found that the cruise had plenty of activities to suit everyone's needs. We cruised at the end of September, so there wasn't a lot of children; just a few infants here and there. While the cruise was fully booked, it never felt extremely crowded except on embarkation day. But once everyone found their spaces and got into their routine, using the elevators was no problem. Overall, we found the people on-board to be extremely friendly. The cruise staff somewhat varied. Some of the staff cared A LOT and it showed, others couldn't be bothered. But for the most part, all of the interactions with the staff were pleasant. You can tell that this boat was made to be in Alaska. If you're sailing that itinerary and there isn't much to do outside due to weather, show up to any place indoors 20-30 minutes early to get seats. The observation lounge gets very crowded (as you probably would assume); however, once you find a seat it does not feel crowded in there because of the way everything is sectioned off. The hard part is finding an open space. We saw "Six" and "Jersey Boys" on the ship. Both were excellent! I am a HUGE fan of "Six" and saw the original run on the West End. The girls did just as good as any of the West End performers. We also saw the Prohibition Show which was also very good. Make sure you get there EARLY to get good seats, and be prepared to be called out by the performers! If you don't want to deal with people who are already drunk, go to the earlier performance. But you will receive 5 FULL cocktails - definitely worth the up-charge.Overall, the boat is easy to get around for the most part. If you are traveling with people who need assistance walking, it may take a bit longer to get somewhere, but it is doable. Moving on to food and drinks, this is the only reason I would give this cruise 4 stars rather than 5. While all of the food on board was EXCELLENT (you have to try the teppanyaki and the French restaurant!), there was often times gaps between when you can go eat - especially between breakfast and dinner. For example, most places stopped serving breakfast around 10 am and would not start serving lunch until noon. That just doesn't make sense to me. Especially for a cruise line that claims "freestyle cruising." The buffet shuts down lunch at 3:30 and does not reopen until 5 for dinner. The main dining rooms are closed between 1:30 and 5. The only places that seemed to fill the gap were Food Republic and the Local, which is supposedly open 24 hours a day but even then still closes for small increments. I understand that kitchens need to prepare for the next meal, but again it just doesn't make sense to have those gaps on a cruise. So with that being said, plan your meals ahead of time. The drinks on board were good, make sure to try all of the bars to find that one bar tender you really like. Drink service was hit or miss. Sometimes waiters were eager and taking your order, sometimes you had to give up waiting and walk up to the bar and order. All in all, it was a great cruise! I would definitely recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Wanted to see Alaska and this cruise was recommended. The ship is huge and beautiful. I have never seen anything like the observatory on deck 15. We wanted to hang in this area more, but it was hard to find a space to sit because so many ... Read More
Wanted to see Alaska and this cruise was recommended. The ship is huge and beautiful. I have never seen anything like the observatory on deck 15. We wanted to hang in this area more, but it was hard to find a space to sit because so many people were there. Our cabin was better than expected. There were plenty of places to eat and a variety of food was offered. We had the prepaid beverage package. This package is a must for anyone who drinks alcohol. The entertainment on board was good.Roberto and Alex were great but I would have like more activities to be offered and more diversity among the entertainers. The highlight of the entertainment was the dance battle competition.The service on board was top notch. The staff was always friendly and helpful. The shore excursions offerings were average. Disembarking the first day was not smooth at all. Family/friend groups were separated and ended up on different buses. Norwegian needs to work out a plan to assure groups stay together. On the next stop, the ship did make adjustments and getting off the ship was better. After going on an excursion the first day, there was no time to view the city/town, so we decided not to do an excursion on the next stop and see what the city/town had to offer. Kudos to Norwegian for offering the Port Valet service. Our luggage was picked up from outside our cabin the night before disembarkment, taken to the airport and we picked it up at our final home destination airport. Great service that was free of charge. Because we went to Alaska near the end of the cruise season there, Norwegian paid for our air flights. I would consider cruising with Norwegian again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Picked this cruise for our 30 year wedding anniversary. The cruise itself was nice but we had a great time early on but later not so much. The first stop in Juneau was nice. We wanted to do the Whale watch with Mendnehall glacer but it ... Read More
Picked this cruise for our 30 year wedding anniversary. The cruise itself was nice but we had a great time early on but later not so much. The first stop in Juneau was nice. We wanted to do the Whale watch with Mendnehall glacer but it sold out quickly. We were able to pick up the same thing off ship with a private company. The disembarkation was slow so we had little time to see much at Mendenhall. We had a great time on the whale watching boat. Saw lots of whales. Second stop was Skagway. We booked the UTV excusion that was in Haines and had a great time. Even saw a pair of juvenile eaglets playing overhead before taking off. Made me smile watching them play. At the end it started to rain (with wind) and get cool and made the boat ride back to Scagway pretty bumpy. I didn't get sea sick, but it might have made others (as a warning). Next stop was Glacier Bay...all I can say is Wow! So beautiful. Lots of blue skies and puffy clouds as a the beautiful back drop to all the mountains and glaciers. Great part of the whole trip to be able to sit out on the balcony and watch all the scenery go by. This is a must for an Alaskan itinerary! Now the bad...That evening a storm moved in and the Captain (with home office) called for us to not go to port. (found out later that Holland America made it into port) Grrr! I was looking forward to going to an eagle viewing excursion. From there on it was no fun. It was a lot of sitting around eating and drinking. Or you could pay to play bingo, deal or no deal, or the casino. You would think they would have tried to pull into Victoria early so we could see the place in the day light on our own...but nope they said we couldn't pull in early. So we had a day and a half at sea. Victoria was pretty much a bust. Can't do much in the dark within only 4 hrs. The bus ride to and back from town was $15 per or a 45 minute walk seemed a little pricey for a one and a half mile ride. We walked a bit and then just got frustrated because it was dark and had no directions on how to get anywhere so we just went back to the ship. What a waste of 4 hrs in port. They should find a different port to stop in so you can have maybe 6 hrs to do something or just scrap it all together and stay in another port longer. Don't get me wrong I loved the cruise it's just that things could be better in some cases. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We had a wonderful time on our Alaska cruise on the Bliss from Seattle. First, I would like to praise the captain who made a couple of difficult decisions regarding when to leave a port and to skip a port. When we were in Skagway there ... Read More
We had a wonderful time on our Alaska cruise on the Bliss from Seattle. First, I would like to praise the captain who made a couple of difficult decisions regarding when to leave a port and to skip a port. When we were in Skagway there were extremely high winds (50+ mph) and delayed our leaving the port for 6 hours but hardly affected our itinerary in Glacier Bay. The other decision was to not stop in Ketchican due gale force winds, which in my opinion was a smart move. Now on to the ship, they definitely made changes from the Breakaway and Encore that were more appealing such as; adding the racetrack and laser tag (replaces ropes course), enclosing an area in the casino for smokers so the smoke doesn't permeate the rest of the casino and surrounding areas, reconfiguring the comedy club with the stage in the center, switching the blues club to the Cavern Club, adding the observation lounge (especially the one in the Haven), having the Haven sun deck span the entire front of the ship with two hot tubs, the addition of the Food Republic and Q (both excellent food). The shows; Jersey Boys is fantastic, I didn't think Six was good, comedy shows were excellent, Beatles shows were excellent but unfortunately got overcrowded when in the Cavern Club. Ate most of our meals in Haven (outstanding)but on specialty nights had good meals in Q and Tepanyaki, however Cagney's but was a bit subpar and did miss not having a Moderno on board. One night tried meal in Manhattan room which was a disaster and was given a free lunch at Food Republic because of it (which we loved and wish we knew about it before). Local was good for snacks. Lastly, entertainment staff was terrific as was our Concierge David and the entire Haven staff were first rate. Port Valet is a terrific feature of the Seattle cruise port where they send your luggage directly to your airline and check it in. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I decided to take vacations the last moment (needed a break from a stressful work assignment) so once I decided on the destination, an Alaska cruise, I got what was still available so it wasn't really a thorough choice. Some other ... Read More
I decided to take vacations the last moment (needed a break from a stressful work assignment) so once I decided on the destination, an Alaska cruise, I got what was still available so it wasn't really a thorough choice. Some other lines were selling out fast, the Norwegian Bliss still had a mini-suite (better accommodations were sold out) so I took it. This was my first cruise so I didn't know what to expect, but I was overall pleasantly surprised, with many ups, but also, there were a few downs. The good: the Norwegian Bliss is a very new ship, and it is tastefully decorated, with everything in top shape and working order. The service is unbelievable, with extremely friendly and helpful staff everywhere. We didn't have a single negative experience with the staff. We were impressed with how they were always willing to help, with a smile, and were very efficient, knowledgeable, and professional. The Norwegian Cruise Line must have an excellent training center for the staff! We felt pampered! Some of the food was surprisingly good. The La Cucina restaurant served one of the best Italian meals I've ever had, and I'm half-Italian (I'm a dual citizen of Italy and the United States), I know Italian cuisine very well. Food Republic was delicious with original items, very well-presented. Los Lobos was very tasty too, with Mexican food that benefits from a modern touch. The one meal we had at the complimentary Manhattan was excellent and almost as good as what we had in the paid specialty venues above. Breakfast at The Local was tasty and peaceful. The swimming pool area and the hot tubs were clean and pleasant, and never too crowded. The Observation Lounge is a very cool and relaxing space, and they have tasty snacks and a nice piano bar. I really enjoyed the cast of the musical Six (the other musical, Jersey Boys, I didn't attend because I had seen it already), and the Beatles cover band at The Cavern. A duo of Phillipino male pianist and female singer were excellent. The silent disco with earphones at the Social was cool. The bar that specializes in Mojitos was good too. The wine bar The Cellar was excellent, with very good tasting events, including lectures by a very knowledgeable sommelier. I've been studying and tasting wine for decades and still, he surprised me with some information that I didn't know. The stand-up comedians were very, very funny! My wife very much enjoyed the Spa. She had several treatments there, and found the staff to be competent, and with prices similar to what she pays elsewhere. I didn't frequent it. She also liked the Gym with Yoga and Aerobic classes. Gift shops were good; my wife gave me a beautiful Scuderia Ferrari watch and I gave her a nice necklace. These were both well-priced. Other guests were friendly, polite, and we had some nice conversations. Embarkation was easy and fast. Disembarkation, however, was rather slow, with long lines and long waiting times. The bad: The Norwegian Bliss, together with the similar Norwegian Joy, are two of the biggest ships in the business, and the elevators, 16 in total, were overwhelmed. Often, the elevators were full when they reached our deck, and we had to wait and wait for an opportunity to get in. This ship should have the double of the number of elevators they offer. It's a pity that obviously, this can't be changed. The architects should have planned it better: for a ship this size, add more elevators! Some of the food was rather mediocre. The two restaurants with the best reputation, Ocean Blue and Le Bistro, were paradoxically very weak. For example, I had a steak with five peppers at Le Bistro, and I had to abundantly add more pepper to get any flavor at all, and the meat was overcooked although I asked for medium rare. Again, I lived in Paris, France, for 5 years and I know French cuisine very well. Everything we had at Le Bistro was bland and a pale imitation of good French cooking. Ocean Blue was also rather unremarkable. We had better seafood in the other venues, as compared to this one that specializes in seafood. Weird. Two of the three main complimentary restaurants, Taste and Savor, were also very mediocre. The Garden Cafe serves a buffet, and the food there was rather unappealing as well, not to forget, it was very crowded and chaotic. A particular breakfast at Savor was almost disgusting, with a croissant with scrambled eggs that looked like it was microwaved, so mushy the croissant was, and Eggs Benedict that were pretty dry and chewy. Some of the live music was atrocious. First of all, the selection is geared towards Country and Pop, two genres I don't care for. There was absolutely no venue that played jazz. For a cruise line that is registered in the United States (as well as the Bahamas) and sails to and from mostly American cities (with the exception of Victoria, BC) with most guests being American, it is weird that they don't present at all the most quintessential American genre, jazz. I also enjoy classical music and there was none to be found. The blonde female pianist was terrible, often botching the musical lines. The rock band Blue 4, oh my God, they must be the worst I've ever heard! Slow, low energy, poor playing, and mediocre voices. I can't believe the cruise line can't find better musicians. As a matter of fact, in the talent show featuring members of the crew, there were two waiters who sang much better than most singers who were hired for the live music! It would be nice to have an indoor swimming pool for the cold weather. Apparently they do have one in The Haven, the upscale section of the ship, but it's only for the guests of that section, which was sold out when I booked my cruise. The shore excursions in general were expensive and not a good value. Some were enjoyable but others were rushed and confusing, including, it was hard to find the correct buses outside. Maybe it's the luck of the draw since there are so many options, but unfortunately some of the ones we picked weren't that great. We bought them from the cruise line website and later realized that the same excursions are offered elsewhere for much cheaper prices. Oh well, I guess next cruise I'll be smarter. A couple of them were good, though. The art auctions weren't good. We found most of the art being sold, to be very tacky. Funny enough, the one piece we liked inside the art venue, wasn't for sale; it was part of the permanent ship decor. So, overall, I'm pleased with the Norwegian Bliss, but I do think they need to hire better musicians, be a bit more even in terms of food quality, and it would be lovely to have more elevators and an indoor swimming pool, although these structural issues are set in stone and can't be changed. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Received a promotional offer from a travel agency we have used before. We saw a lot of beautiful scenery. The Ports were fun but the stop in Victoria at 19:30 was a waste of time. Time would have been better spent staying longer in ... Read More
Received a promotional offer from a travel agency we have used before. We saw a lot of beautiful scenery. The Ports were fun but the stop in Victoria at 19:30 was a waste of time. Time would have been better spent staying longer in Ketchikan, which was too short. We spent 2 days seeing Seattle before the cruise which was nice. Transfer from hotel to airport to ship went smoothly. Enjoyed the amenities onboard the ship and the time in Glacier Bay was very nice. Best breakfast onboard was the buffet. Restaurant menu was very limited which is understandable on a week long cruise. Best dinner was in the Local. Other restaurants tried to make things too fancy with tiny portions.. Disembarkation was a very pleasant experience. We just tagged our bags and put them in the hallway the night before and the next time we saw the was a baggage claim in our hometown. They even had our boarding passes printed and delivered to our room so we could go straight to security and boarding. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Wanted to visit Alaska. This was my first time on a cruise ship and I absolutely loved it. Lots of things to do on board, terrific food and great staff from beginning to end. Since this was an end of season cruise, there were not as ... Read More
Wanted to visit Alaska. This was my first time on a cruise ship and I absolutely loved it. Lots of things to do on board, terrific food and great staff from beginning to end. Since this was an end of season cruise, there were not as many people on board but there were still several thousand of us. Everything was managed very well with one exception. We did three excursions through Norwegian. The first two were terrific. In Skagway, we went on a Gold Panning, Sled Dog and Railway Summit tour. It was great but a very long day at around 7 hours. In Ketchikan, we did an Eagles, Lighthouse and Totem tour - I would absolutely love to do this tour again. The boat crew were great and the scenery was amazing. We got an unexpected bonus by sighting 3 whales who gave us a great show. The third tour was in Victoria to the Butchart Gardens. Unfortunately it was at night and the lighting at the gardens was about the same as the solar lights we put out along our sidewalk. Very frustrating since you could tell that in the daylight, these gardens would have been fantastic. Don't waste your money on this one. Norwegian should not be offering it as it was really just a long bus ride in the dark to visit a very dark garden. Too bad this marred an otherwise wonderful experience. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
The ship is great, balcony cabin was excellent and had lot of fun time. For majority scenario where a person who doesn't have dietary restrictions and didn't have to go to medical center, I would have given 4.5 stars. My only ... Read More
The ship is great, balcony cabin was excellent and had lot of fun time. For majority scenario where a person who doesn't have dietary restrictions and didn't have to go to medical center, I would have given 4.5 stars. My only gripe is related to uncleanliness in Medical center and inconsistent responses from the staff in Garden cafe' that affected our dietery needs (making us feeling guilty and not enjoying it to the fullest). 1. Medical Center: I had to take my 9 year old son to the medical center as he threw up few times and was complaining about heartburn. The staff wasn't friendly and she started with money talk - "you need to pay $200 for the doctor just to see the patient and that needs to be charged to your stateroom (i.e. no insurance would be accepted). In addition, any other procedures after the consultations will be charged separately". Although I think this is required to set the right expectations - I would have loved to see empathy towards the patient who was in pain (totally opposite considering the service we were getting anywhere else on the ship). The biggest letdown for me was the operating room she took us to wait for the doctor to come. When I looked at that room, I was terrified. The room was unkempt and there were blood stains on the floor. We didn't feel good overall - and decided to skip the visit. Made sure we control the food intake that day and with that our son came back to normal (light meal, lemon water and some OTC medicines we had with us). 2. Dietary needs: We had dietary needs (no eggs, no meat, no fish, no alcohol). We let the cruise know in advance, and also met the associate maître d' on first day of the cruise to let them know. In Garden cafe' there was "Taste of India" station that met most of our needs (which was good). But at other stations, it was very difficult to figure out especially regarding eggs. For the exact same food item, I received 3 different answers from the people serving at that station on different days - 1. It's vegetarian (no eggs), 2. It has eggs, 3. It is made with fish sauce. For the first two days we ate it considering that addresses our dietary needs only to realize it wasn't correct the other day (this might have been the reason for us to visit Medical center). I have suggestion to the NCL staff to just put 5 checkboxes (or icons) for every food item: Meat/Fish, Eggs, Nuts, Gluten, Dairy. The chef who prepares the item already knows the contents (and SHOULD know), so making it visible addresses most of dietary needs making it very clear to everyone, and we don't end up getting confusing answers and also it will help respect guest's dietary restrictions. 3. Inconsistent responses from food staff: In Garden Cafe' (main dining room), there are foods marked with "Green" and "Red" labels. I asked the question on what does that indicate - here again there were multiple responses. My initial gut was 'green' means vegetarian food, and red means non-vegetarian food (i.e. containing meat/fish). The biggest letdown was that the Food and Beverage Director didn't have an idea about it. He first agreed with me, and when I showed him that a vegetarian food shows as red, he started giving some random reasons which made no sense. Finally the restaurant manager (who reports to the director) came and told that 'green' means cold food and 'red' means hot food. I would be interested to know why green/red combo was chosen, as usually green in terms of food denotes vegetarian/vegan food, and hot/cold in general is indicated by red/blue color (like hot/cold water in shower or at the sink). After this experience, I asked same question to two other people managing the garden cafe, and again got different answers :). Again, suggestion for NCL staff is to use "BLUE/RED" color combo for denoting "Cold/Hot" which is consistent with expectations. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
First cruise. Enjoyable. Food was good. Would rate Le Bistro as best, Teppanyaki was the most fun. Ocean Blue was good, but Le Bistro and Cagney's were better for us. First night ate at Manhattan room - did not go back. Used Garden ... Read More
First cruise. Enjoyable. Food was good. Would rate Le Bistro as best, Teppanyaki was the most fun. Ocean Blue was good, but Le Bistro and Cagney's were better for us. First night ate at Manhattan room - did not go back. Used Garden Café more than we planned - it was very good. Taste and Savor were also good. All restaurants were good. Vibe club was probably not worth it for an Alaska cruise. The hot tubs were warm and could have been 3-4 degrees hotter. Would have been nice for the cool misty days. Service at the Vibe was outstanding. The thermal spa was wonderful! Probably our favorite place on the ship. Wish it opened earlier. Spin class was disappointing. A lot of potential wasted. Gym was packed most mornings. Jersey Boys was great, Havana was not. Beatles were good, but crowded every night. One had to arrive very early to get a seat. Comedy was very good. Went to two, but fell asleep at the late one - not because of the act, but because we were tired. Alaska was a good choice and Glacier Bay was the highlight. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
The Bliss was very clean and you can tell it’s a newer ship. The Haven is amazing, great customer service, private restaurant was yummy, bar tenders always attentive, concierge always willing to help. Penthouse was nice size with lots of ... Read More
The Bliss was very clean and you can tell it’s a newer ship. The Haven is amazing, great customer service, private restaurant was yummy, bar tenders always attentive, concierge always willing to help. Penthouse was nice size with lots of storage space with huge bathroom and balcony however I do feel the room was overpriced compared to other cruise lines. Butler “Walter” was wonderful. Cruise to Alaska did not have to fight for loungers at the pool deck. Casino is nice and the smoking section is separate from the regular casino so doesn’t leave you smelling like gross smoke. Laser tag was so much fun and a must. My son loved the race cars. Jersey boys was great. My son loved the splash academy! Cons: do your research and make reservations before you go. Everything books by afternoon first day don’t miss out. Race cars are fun but only 3 laps, too quick should be at least 5 laps. Havana was ok, not great but something to do. Bingo staff not entertaining but fun to play but expensive. Most Entertainment is in atrium and location is too small. Kids arcade much smaller than some other newer ships but it was entertaining to my 7 yr old. Food was good but not memorable at all. Haven was good but speciality restaurants were just average. Ate at steakhouse (ok), Italian (below average),Q-bbq (good). Margaritaville has good appetizers but burgers seemed like the same burgers served on the buffet. The local was good and ate there several times for quick bites. Cupcakes at the bakery were good but nothing special. I enjoyed the cake in the Haven Lounge more. Ate breakfast once in buffet and a couple lunches in the buffet and it was your typical cruise buffet but i was impressed by how clean it was and staff were always cleaning and clearing dishes and offered good variety of food. The ship was full occupancy but I always found table for 4. I never felt over crowded. The drop waterslide was not open the entire cruise (rumor was it was missing a bolt), kids water slides didn’t open till later in day. 1st day not till 4pm and every other day was 11 or 12. Everyother cruise I’ve been on opens early like 9/10am especially on embarkation day. My son was disappointed not to try out the kids slides until late on the first day. Also closes early but water is always warm so that was a plus. Kids waterpark is smaller than I’m use to. Would have thought they would have had more waterpark attractions on new ship but my son still had fun but gets crowded. Mini golf-5 holes, nothing fancy. Smoke stack blows on you while playing. No real entertainment on the pool deck at all. If you go with kids make sure to make reservations for race cars and laser tag $. Other than letting them play in arcades $ and going to the kids club splash academy there is nothing else for them to do. Surprised there weren’t more shopping options on board. The Margaritaville store and pool accessories not available on Alaska cruise. Overall it was a great family vacation and Alaska is beautiful and lots of fun excursions. The Bliss was a beautiful new ship. The ship was nicely decorated and clean. The restaurants were disappointing but I never went hungry. Just think I could have got the same experience for a lower price on a different ship; guess it was newer so paid more. I don’t think we would have had the same experience if we didn’t stay in Haven room. It was nice not to have to wait in any lines to get on or off boat and always had seat available for the shows but again would have paid less on another cruise line. Would love to go back to Alaska but most likely will try another cruise line for less but ship was big and beautiful and we did have great time overall. If staying in Seattle, the Marriott waterfront is across from the NCL terminal. We literally walked across the street with our luggage and were on the boat. Plus there is free shuttle outside that takes you to all the local Seattle attractions. Very convenient. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This was our first cruise and our first time visiting Alaska. Overall we had a good experience but we wouldn't do a cruise on this ship again. Positives: - Two highlights for us were two excursions we took. In Juneau with did a ... Read More
This was our first cruise and our first time visiting Alaska. Overall we had a good experience but we wouldn't do a cruise on this ship again. Positives: - Two highlights for us were two excursions we took. In Juneau with did a helicopter ride and walkabout to the Mendenhall glacier, this was definitely worth the relatively high price for the excursion. We also thoroughly enjoyed a bike ride that we did in Skagway. - We spent a bit more money to get a stateroom in the Haven, which is a separate, private section located at the top of the forward section of the ship. I'm not sure if our room was much bigger than any other room on the ship, but it was well-appointed with a nice big deck. Even better we had access to two private lounges, an indoor pool, sun deck, concierge and access to the Haven Restaurant. This was well worth the additional cost. - The food was great overall on the ship. We ate a number of meals at the Haven Restaurant. We also got a 3-meal restaurant package and are glad we did that. We had two meals at Ocean Blue and one meal at La Cucina, and all the meals were excellent. We also had a few lunches at the Garden Cafe, a buffet-style restaurant that offered any kind of food you would want. The food quality was high across the board. - Service was top-notch across the aboard on this ship. All the people working on the ship were professional, helpful, knowledgeable and friendly. A first-class operation. - The ship's gym is good. We used it several times during our trip. Negatives: - A low point of the cruise, from our perspective, was the cruising in Glacier Bay. Due to manmade climate change, there were really no glaciers or icebergs to see except for one glacier at the very end of the bay. Lots of brown and green, and no wildlife. It was pretty depressing. - An odd segment of the itinerary was our stop at Victoria, BC. We didn't get off the ship until 8:30 pm and had to be back on the ship before midnight. So we really didn't have much time to see Victoria. - The beverage package was a bit awkward to use. I like to have a glass of wine with dinner, but the package didn't cover a lot of wines. You had to pay extra for most of the wines. - This final point isn't really a fault of the ship, but as a married gay couple with no kids this really wasn't the right ship for us. This ship is HUGE, and most of the people on the ship are large younger famililes with lots of kids and older straight couples. If we were to do another cruise, we'd try to find a smaller ship and/or a cruise for LGBTQ folks. Again, this isn't really a criticism of the cruise. We didn't really expect there to be a lot of LGBTQ folks on the ship, but we didn't think we'd be the only one. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We were a group of 10 - 6 of us were 50-60 years old and 4 of us were 15-20 years old. We had a WONDERFUL time on the Bliss. I've taken 20+ cruises, though this was my first time on a Norwegian ship - the Bliss is only a year old and ... Read More
We were a group of 10 - 6 of us were 50-60 years old and 4 of us were 15-20 years old. We had a WONDERFUL time on the Bliss. I've taken 20+ cruises, though this was my first time on a Norwegian ship - the Bliss is only a year old and really great. The race cars were fun, and laser tag was awesome. The Jersey Boys show was terrific (I've seen the NYC-Broadway production and it was well followed) but we thought the Havana show was "meh" at best. Service was excellent, from the room steward to the dining room servers, and the ship was always clean! There is a small closed in smoking area in the casino but the casino itself is non-smoking … so unusual but so wonderful. I didn't like the $10 craps limit ($10 blackjack is ok for me, but craps moves quickly and I prefer $5) but it is what it is. The food was very good - I haven't had "great" food in the last 10 cruises, but it was def very good - the buffet is well managed and well laid out and there were no lines. We didn't eat in any of the specialty restaurants b/c some of the kids in our group are horribly picky, but we sure didn't starve (get the mint chocolate mousse dessert when you see it on the menu - I special requested it a second night and was the hero of our group - it's that good)! The highlight of our trip was the Juneau excursion - we took the helicopter ride to the glacier, visited the dog sled camp, and rode on the dog sleds. At $650/pp it was def pricy, but it was hands down a once in a lifetime experience and I highly recommend it! In Skagway we did the gold panning/bbq lunch trip with the bus ride to the summit - the driver was awesome but the gold panning/lunch was only ok and not worth the $. Others in my group did the wildlife refuge trip and said that was awesome. In Ketchikan we just did the lumberjack show - it was an hour, it was corny, but it was fun. There are lots of shops there, so we were plenty busy. Only a 3 hour stop in Victoria, so it was rushed to take a bus downtown and back - wish it was longer. We saw whales at some point each day, and Glacier Bay was great. We caught a wonderful week of weather (it isn't wonderful for the glaciers but we enjoyed it) and had a terrific time. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This was my 60th year of awesomeness; several friends joined me for the journey. I wanted to add places that I have not been for the 2019 trips. This was the 5th Trip of the year with more to come. The food was excellent aboard the ... Read More
This was my 60th year of awesomeness; several friends joined me for the journey. I wanted to add places that I have not been for the 2019 trips. This was the 5th Trip of the year with more to come. The food was excellent aboard the ship with several dinning opportunities. Le Bistro... top notch, our server, “M”. (I cannot remember her name was superb. Cagney... excellent and great service by Ahmant. Taste... wonderful server, Mr. Cruz, he made our experience wonderful. Activities... There were fewer activities compared to other ships that I have been on. This could be better for adult and family entertainment. Prohibition was sold out, the Race trace was sold out...: The spa... wonderful. The warming lounge chairs are beyond description. The ports... just okay. Arriving at 8:30 for Victoria was a sad experience and not worth the walking tour we scheduled. Thankfully the experience of sailing and ocean views were great. The balcony view was worth the fare for great weather. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Short and sweet.... The cruise itself was amazing! The Bliss is an amazing ship and the crew were unbelievable. Dining options are very good and the food is amazing, however good luck getting into the dining venue you want. Even ... Read More
Short and sweet.... The cruise itself was amazing! The Bliss is an amazing ship and the crew were unbelievable. Dining options are very good and the food is amazing, however good luck getting into the dining venue you want. Even attempting dining reservations months in advance I could not get into Cagney's or Ocean Blue, I called and was told on the ship it would be no problem as they only pre book 10-20% ahead of time for reservations. Totally wrong! We were early on board between 10 and 11 am and they had a reservation specialist on the way to the ship. Cagney's and Ocean Blue were already 100% reserved for the entire cruise! To me, not having these choices available at all is highly unacceptable! My only other complaint the entire time was the photography studio. We were celebrating our anniversary on the ship and had a ceremony that was captured by the studio. We also had a shoot the same day in glacier bay. Since the studio took the photos we had no other photos of either event that day, not a single one! Now I was told when I inquired that they had something starting at $350 so I figured I could afford at least a few of the best pictures. When I went to view my photos they have packages already set and they were not anywhere in the realm of $350. The first package was 5 photos for $1300 and that was the lowest price package and they were astronomical from there. I could get the cheapest package and add digital copies of all 123 pictures for the low low price of $2400. There were probably 60 pictures that I would even dream of keeping and when I asked about just the digital files they will give them to you on a flash drive without any hard copies for $2000. So basically our big day and the real reason for the entire cruise was held hostage. They also do not have any way to order pictures after you leave the ship. The digital files would be nothing for them to store for at least a period of time and as a business they would make more money allowing post cruise purchasing for those of us not made of money. Other than that the cruise was wonderful and we will be going again I am just not sure about Norwegian as a choice in the future. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We were a large cruise and one member of the family had cruised Norwegian before and really liked the freestyle cruising model, so we chose this cruise. Embarkation was smooth, disembarkation was less smooth, but not awful. The ship ... Read More
We were a large cruise and one member of the family had cruised Norwegian before and really liked the freestyle cruising model, so we chose this cruise. Embarkation was smooth, disembarkation was less smooth, but not awful. The ship was beautiful and very big. We had a lot of issues with booking specialty dining. Months in advance, we were closed out of the specialty restaurants almost as soon as they were opened to book. I was told by my cruise consultant that we should have no issue straightening that out once we got on board - unfortunately, that was not the case. The first hour spend on board was spent trying to rearrange dining reservations - and we still were unable to book the restaurants we wanted as they were fully booked for the duration of the cruise. They also seemed to be half empty when we looked inside, I can only guess that they did not have the staff to fill the restaurants to capacity. Given that we spent so much time on dining reservations, we ended up missing out on reserving the racetrack and laser tag for the kids in our family, as they were then fully booked for the duration of our cruise. The large slide was broken for the duration of the cruise. That left little for them to enjoy. The service was good. I think it could have been more personal. Our cabin steward was nice, when we ran into him. He didn't make the towel animals for our kids - however I found that he did so for one of our family members that asked about them! I wish I had known that was something you needed to request, as I know my kids would have enjoyed them. I did enjoy the cruise very much. Having cruised before on other lines, I just thought this newest, larger ship would have "wowed" and it really didn't for me. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This cruise was picked as a VIP Park West Gallery art auction cruise. We did not directly pay for this cruise but we are glad we chose it. Park West Gallery paid in full for Cruise, drinks, gratuities, and special dinning. The only real ... Read More
This cruise was picked as a VIP Park West Gallery art auction cruise. We did not directly pay for this cruise but we are glad we chose it. Park West Gallery paid in full for Cruise, drinks, gratuities, and special dinning. The only real down side was the specialty dinning. It was not very good. Service was poor and the food was just ok. Got a backed potato at one dinning and did not even receive butter or sour cream, or anything other then the potato. We had charges on our bill that were not correct, the customer service desk had us back and forth several times for the same reason. Just seemed like they were not concerned. We were unable to use the go cart track as it was booked full the second day of the cruise. I would just think that they would have there act together if they were concerned about the customer. I did enjoy the cruise and most of our complaints are small, overall it was a nice cruise. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
The Bliss is a beautiful vessel... without a doubt! Everything looked beautiful and for the most part the staff was good. The cruise director Roberto was fabulous. The entertainment was top notch, really all the shows and the ... Read More
The Bliss is a beautiful vessel... without a doubt! Everything looked beautiful and for the most part the staff was good. The cruise director Roberto was fabulous. The entertainment was top notch, really all the shows and the comedy shows were fabulous. The spa package for the week was a great experience and a great deal we thought. We did a couple of really great excursions at port.. they were on time and very informative about the Alaska culture. My one HUGE disappointment was the photography services. We got our photos taken in the atrium and asked if we wanted to do photos on the day we were cruising through glacier bay.. of course!! We showed up at the time we were given for those family photos in front of the biggest glacier, we were so excited!! These were the same photographers that took pictures two days before, once we were done they handed us a paper and off we went. We went to the photo area 2 days later to look at all the pictures taken throughout the week so we could order but noticed those glacier pictures were not there, come to find we had a specific time to view those in a different photo gallery.. several other families also were experiencing the same issue and were upset they were not informed of the difference. We went to the gallery and were told to come back the next day at a specific time.. we did and they did this elaborate slide show of our photos and once done we asked what’s the deal they said all these photos are only available in canvases.. Ridiculously EXPENSIVE!! we couldn’t even buy one print.. Therefor we didn’t get one photo of our family in front of that glacier! This made me sick and made me cry I was so upset... Shame on you Norwegian!!!! Why have 2 different photography shops and not allow people to view their memories with just one shop. We went to the arcade and was shocked you charge to play. I think charging for video games is ridiculous. The food was very repetitive. Would of liked it changed up some. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
ship is only two years old. very clean and modern. 3 main dining rooms all had same menus, so you had your choice for dining. dinner menu could of been more selective. so called nightly specials not up to par that i have experienced on ... Read More
ship is only two years old. very clean and modern. 3 main dining rooms all had same menus, so you had your choice for dining. dinner menu could of been more selective. so called nightly specials not up to par that i have experienced on other cruise lines. had about six items on menu all seven nights and about six specials. food was tasty,but could of used a better selection (fish,lobster,filet) wait staff was excellent! entertainment was good. different game show activities for all ages several times during day and night. two major shows on ship. Havana was very good. Jersey Boys was outstanding! previously saw show on Broadway. the ships show was almost the same exact show, Fantastic! rock band Siglo was best cruise ship band I ever heard. They should be on a concert stage, not a boat! Can't say anything bad about service on ship! everyone very friendly and never had to wait for any amount of time for anything Time at ports could be longer. A cruise to Alaska is about the scenery especially the Inside Passage which is worth the price of admission itself! There is a lot of down time on the ship.to much time between ports. Again, I realize the trip is about the scenery, but time to explore the ports is also fun. shore excursions were excellent. 12 person canoe ride on Mendenhall Lake to see a glacier was stunning! Bus ride through the Yukon was breathtaking. Bike and Hike through rain forest outstanding! Highly recommend this ship to see Alaska. It was a trip of a lifetime! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I chose this Alaskan Itinerary because it was one of the few that went to Glacier Bay and I wanted my kids to see it over the other options. Here were some of my answers to the NCL survey they just sent to me. 1. Breakfast at the buffet ... Read More
I chose this Alaskan Itinerary because it was one of the few that went to Glacier Bay and I wanted my kids to see it over the other options. Here were some of my answers to the NCL survey they just sent to me. 1. Breakfast at the buffet didn't have the variety I am used to. 2. The Race Track was fully booked within the first few hours of boarding. Maybe you should limit reservations to one per person until the 2nd day so we all have a shot. 3. Drink package not inclusive of bottles of water? So I can have a $10 glass of wine, but can't get a 25cent bottle of water? That's just petty. 4. Drink package not to include espresso/latte? 5. Gym had minimal weight equip. Plenty of cardio, but not enough weights. 6. I chose this specific cruise solely because it hit glacier bay. The value of this cruise was poor compared to others that had another stop instead of glacier bay. If I had to do it again, I would choose a less costly cruise. 7. Limited storage in the rooms, especially for my kids who had an inside stateroom. 8. Elevators were awful- Too long to wait, always full, disembarkation took me over 10 minutes to catch an open elevator. 9. Photo package should be unlimited like Disney offers. I would gladly pay you $300 vs the $150 for my 10 images if I could have unlimited digital images. I don't need the prints. There is no incremental cost to you, so it is 100% profit to allow me all photos for more money. You already did the work, but you lost out on $150 in more revenue. Other cruise lines provide this and you should too! 10. Wine cost is absolutely ridiculous. You have maybe 2-3 wines in each class that qualify for the drink package. I can walk into any restaurant in town and get a nice glass of wine for $14, but on your ship, that isn't the case. 11. Because of this, I likely would NEVER pay for a drink package again on your cruise line vs your competition. 12. Pool entertainment was too short. They should be out there all day long. 13. Pool temperature was too cold. 14. Hot tubs were always crowded and there weren't enough of them. They should also be located on the main pool deck, not just up above. 15. Entertainment was great. Jersey Boys, the Beatles, Havana, comedy, all good. Kids enjoyed this as well. 16. Could never find a seat in the mojito bar. 17. Needed more jazz music too, rumba, foxtrot music to dance to. 18. Pizza was so good I gained 5 lbs. 19. It's Alaska, how about a king crab dinner included. 20. $15 cover for Margaritaville? Not necessary, not worth it. 21. Same for the BBQ place. For over 10k for the family, I should get to eat in these mid tier places as part of the fare. 22. Daughter needed a bathing suit- None available for young adults in your shops. 23. Indian food in buffet was really good. 24. Plenty of omelette stations so you never had to wait long. 25. Sometimes difficult to find a place to eat at breakfast in the buffet. 26. The internet app was awesome. Again, no need to charge me $10 a person to communicate with family. For the 10k we paid, just include it. No one likes to be nickled and dimed. 27. would be nice to book larger parties in multiple staterooms for the same show. Link the rooms. 28. Let me trade my celebratory overpriced bottle of bubbly for some bottles of water. (latitudes gift) Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Remember to download the App prior to boarding. A lot of people in our party weren't able to download the App once the ship set sail even when we came to ports. It was difficult for our kids and cousins to communicate without having ... Read More
Remember to download the App prior to boarding. A lot of people in our party weren't able to download the App once the ship set sail even when we came to ports. It was difficult for our kids and cousins to communicate without having the App. They couldn't message each other and so it was hard to keep them together. Be sure to book your Go Karts & Laser Tag first thing when you get on the ship. We found most times were all booked up once we boarded within a few hours. So, be sure to plan in advance all your restaurant reservations, GoKarts, Laser Tag, Shows ahead of time! I had to really plan out our week, as the ship has only so many slots. We missed out on Jersey Boys, as we didn't book in advance. I would even advise booking 2-3 months in advance. Also, with the kids club, Norwegian is very particular with ages. So, my 9 year old couldn't hang out with an 11 year old. It was very disappointing. They would allow limited time (once a day for 1-2 hours for them to be together, which didn't always work in our schedule). The whole point of a cruise is for siblings & cousins to spend time together. They would completely separate them. My 9 year old got bored by himself and chose not to come back to the kids club after the 1st day. Our group of kids ranging from 9 to 15years old had a better time playing bowling, race cars, miniature golf together. Excursions were wonderful in Alaska. Any other them I would recommend. We booked the helicoptor Glacier tour. Loved it. Our other excursion was the train ride. In Victoria, we rented bicycles, as we only had 2-3 hours to spare. In Kechikan, we kayaked. Those excursions were booked outside Norwegian, as they have limited space. Lots of areas to lounge around, which we loved. Shows were good. It was nice to change things up. We enjoyed the Havana! show and with the Beatles even my 15 year old daugter liked. Pools were nice. Used the jacuzzi when it wasn't crowded. I participated in one of their fitness classes. I believe it was the Abs Class. I liked it. Workout room was always crowded so be sure to get there early for a treadmill spot. We would run every morning on the top deck, as well. Food was wonderful. We ate at a specialty restaurant only once and regretted not booking another dinner in advance. Although the non-specialty restaurants had a lot to choose from, we felt we needed more variety. Jimmy Buffet Margaritaville was fabulous and Cagney's is top notch! Overall, loved our experience. Would definately recommend! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
This was our second cruise, but it took us over 20 years to try again because our first one wasn't a pleasant experience. So I'll start with why we selected this particular cruise and why it was so much fun for us overall! We ... Read More
This was our second cruise, but it took us over 20 years to try again because our first one wasn't a pleasant experience. So I'll start with why we selected this particular cruise and why it was so much fun for us overall! We love surprises, but some are even better than expected! The backstory: Bill and I planned an August RV trip to Washington to visit family members who are no longer traveling long distance in their RV. Our 25th anniversary is August 20, so we thought, since we'd be nearby around that time, maybe an Alaskan inside passage passage cruise would be a nice way to celebrate. As we were narrowing in on a particular ship from another cruise line and deciding on which 7 days, the Mickey Utley Band, a favorite that plays in Laughlin, Nevada when touring, announced that they had signed on to entertain for 2 months on the Norwegian Bliss, with their last week being July 21-28. So I started asking questions on their Facebook page, and we decided that it was worth moving our trip up by a month to know we'd enjoy dancing during the cruise. I continued to correspond occasionally after we booked the trip, including sending a message on the morning of the 21st saying we were headed their way. We enjoyed our first day, had an early dinner, and headed for "Q", the BBQ restaurant. The band had just taken the stage, and I waved as we walked in, but nobody waved back. I just figured they were busy, and when they started their first song, Bill and I immediately headed for the dance floor. The looks on their faces surprised us as much as we surprised them! It turned out I had been corresponding all along with their photographer/media person, and the band didn't have a clue we would be here until they saw us start dancing! We had a wonderful time dancing to this excellent band almost every night, and are so very glad we made this choice! We didn't make reservations for any other entertainment or shows, nor did we book any shore excursions. We attended several lounge-type performances by Duo Rika. Siglo, and Suzanne Jade, all of whom were excellent. We had local friends who gave us an incredible tour of Juneau, and booked the White Pass & Yukon Train trip at the dock. We wandered around Skagway and Ketchikan on our own. We didn't disembark at Victoria because of the short stay at that port. We bought the "Romance Package", which was wonderful in every detail. The roses looked almost as fresh as we left our room for the last time as they did when we arrived, and our dinner in Le Bistro was perfect in every way. We ate most of our meals in the Garden Café, which had a great variety of choices as well as special theme nights. The local was great for late-night gatherings with new friends and entertainers. Because we don't drink a lot of alcohol, we didn't buy either of the beverage packages, and found that we had made the right decision for us. We enjoyed the Sugar Cane Mojito Bar's creative options, had our usual 2-beer nights in Q while dancing, and enjoyed other adult beverages "a la carte" wherever we happened to be. Overall, we kept this cruise as simple as possible to allow ourselves to figure out whether we would enjoy cruising again in the future. We're glad we did it our way, we had a great time, and next time, we'll be more adventurous with our planning and reservations. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
My family of 4 had a great experience with NCL on our recent trip to Alaska. We traveled with my parents who are experienced cruisers on different lines (RCCL, Princess, and Disney) we have only sailed with Disney. Here are our pros and ... Read More
My family of 4 had a great experience with NCL on our recent trip to Alaska. We traveled with my parents who are experienced cruisers on different lines (RCCL, Princess, and Disney) we have only sailed with Disney. Here are our pros and cons. Pro: Beautiful ship! Loved the Waterfront, beautiful area to walk around outside. Great place for whale and other wildlife watching. Lots of entertainment, always something going on so we were never bored. Kids (both age 11) loved the pools and water slide. They did not weigh enough for the body slide so they only did the tube slide and kids slide. They loved how warm the water was (my kids and others were swimming in 65 degree weather, sun was nice and warm when it was out!). They LOVED Splash Academy! Had lots of fun there and was constantly checking out the Splash Academy itinerary and the daily freestyle for daily events. Food was over all good. Nothing really stood out. We only ate at the complimentary dining so cannot comment on the specialty restaurants but didn’t feel like we missed out. Loved the heaters by the Garden Cafe so we could eat outside on cold days but still feel warm and enjoy a quieter dining experience. Jersey Boys was excellent. Highly recommend this show. Embarkation and finial debarkation were easy. Others experienced poor experience with finial debarkation but we walked right off with no wait. Friendly service throughout the entire ship. Race track and laser tag were lots of fun but be prepared to bundle up for laser tag. We went on a warmer day but being on the highest deck it was cold and windy!! Cons: We had a balcony room and it felt tight for 4 of us. When they made our room up they always left the couch as a bed and never turned it back to a couch during the day. Our room had the bed close to the balcony and couch next to the closet. Didn’t really care for that design as it was hard to get into the closet and onto the balcony. My parents room was opposite with the bed next to the closet and in my opinion a much nicer layout and easier to move around in with several people in the room, but they had no bunk bed option in that room. No self laundry, they have a day where you can stuff the laundry bag and have it washed for $20 but the bag is small and rips very easily. You have to pay and make reservations for the race track and laser tag, things that on other lines you don’t have to pay for. You have to make reservations for many activities (laser tag, race track, comedy show, most shows in the main theater, and some activities like Canvas by U and such) if you don’t make reservations you risk missing out. Haven was terrible, simple as that. No family show. Would have been nice to have 1 show that our whole family could see together. Havana and Jersey Boys are not that family friendly. Short port times in Ketchikan and Victoria. We almost didn’t get off the ship in Victoria because we had already saw most things would be closed but decided to get off and walk to Fisherman’s Warf. Glad we did as it’s super cute! We were suppose to get off at 8 but we weren’t cleared until 8:30. Observation longe was always crowed and hard to find a seat. Great idea on NCLs part but just like pool lounge hogs, people hog the chairs in there not allowing others to take advantage of them. Overall we all had a wonderful time and would absolutely sail this ship again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Excuse the length of this but wanted to include everything I could remember and also some pre and post trip information. I traveled with my husband, 3 kids (12,16,19) and elderly parents (mid 70’s). This was our very first cruise. We ... Read More
Excuse the length of this but wanted to include everything I could remember and also some pre and post trip information. I traveled with my husband, 3 kids (12,16,19) and elderly parents (mid 70’s). This was our very first cruise. We traveled July 14-21. Pre-cruise: We flew into Seattle early afternoon on Friday. We rented a car through Avis and picked up at the rental center. We drove from the airport to Port Angeles which took about 2 hours. We really wanted to some hikes at Olympic National Park prior to the cruise. In Port Angeles we stayed at the Olympic Lodge. One of the few “nice” hotels in Port Angeles. Did a waterfront walk starting at Francis park and had dinner at Kokopellis which was very good but a bit pricey. Saturday we drove into Olympic National Park and spent a good portion of the day doing hikes around Lake Crescent including Marymere Falls. We also drove up to Hurricane Ridge and walked around. Well worth the trip. Saturday night we drove back to Seattle and stayed at the Sleep Inn near the airport. It was as expected for a lower end hotel but very nice staff. Getting on ship: Sunday morning, I dropped of my parents, kids and luggage at the pier at 9am while my husband and I went to return the rental car. There is an Avis/Budget rental car on 1919 5th Ave. About a 15 minute walk (less than a mile) to the pier. We were all checked in by 9:45. We received boarding group 2 and were on the ship by 11:15. We immediately went to Deck 6, the Social to book laser tag, go-karts and the escape room (escape the big top) We had pre-booked shows and dining. We did not do the dining plan but you can book Manhattan, Taste and Savor early as well. Book as much as you can early. Go to book other things as soon as you get on the ship. Cabins: We made it into our cabins about 1pm. We went on the cheap so we could spend money on excursions. We had 2 family 1 regular inside stateroom. My husband and I were in 12641 the kids 12637. Our room had the big bed in the middle with 2 bunks in ceiling, the kids had 2 twins and 2 bunks that could come down from ceiling. They had one dropped the first night and kept that open. My parents were in 13451 with one bunk that come out of the wall and the main big bed. I thought the cabins were plenty roomy enough. There is a definite lack of storage though and we had stuff stored all over the place. I brought 10 magnetic hooks which were great for the backpacks, jackets, hats and gloves. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07GVCSGTX/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 Hair dryer is great which was surprising. I had packed mine just in case. Water pressure and temperature in shower and sink were also good. We only felt rocking the evening after Glacier Bay. Never really felt it unless sitting on the pot. TMI? Dining: Again we did no specialty dining and really didn’t see the need for it. Breakfast we did in the buffet. My parents really enjoyed Taste and Savor for breakfast. I think we only ate breakfast 4 of the days. Garden Café has lots of choices for breakfast and they are all ok. I don’t like the fact at how crowded it is and how often you have to get up for drink refills and coffee. The food is never hot which I also don’t like but for a buffet it is fine. We only went to dinner at the buffet once and that was because we had a short time span between laser tag and the Jersey boys show. It was fine for dinner. We went on Alaska night which had a lot of seafood which my husband enjoyed. Most dinners were at Manhattan or Taste/Savor. My youngest age 12 had the New York Strip every night. It was hit or miss on the cooking and quality. Some nights a perfect medium, sometimes overcooked and once near raw. Sometimes it was a bit thin and fatty others it was perfect. He LOVED the Caesar salad and would often eat 2 at dinner. One night asking for one for dessert! We always found plenty of appetizers we wanted to order and several things from the entrée menu. I thought it had a good variety of specials each night and we usually ordered one of those. The only disappointing thing is it is always a long meal. Plan on 2 hours for dinner. Our favorite place was the Local. I loved their Cobb salad and had one about every day. My boys (12 and 19) loved the burgers and wings. They didn’t try anything else on the menu as they loved it. We ate lunch here most days as it is quick and good. We would get chairs above the Atrium to watch whatever show was going on. Your food comes out quickly so if you order appetizers you won’t be done with them before the entrée comes out. We did lunch one day at Savor and it was also great. We never went to buffet for lunch. I loved that we could wear anything to any of the restaurants as we aren’t fancy people and are happy in jeans and sweatshirts or shorts and t-shirts. I also loved that from the app I could book a new dinner reservation if we wanted to eat earlier or later that day. There were always something available in the complimentary dining places and we never had a wait even when we didn’t have reservations. Common areas: The pool deck was great even though it is a bit small and can get crowded. We were able to find seats and enjoyed the first day and last day up there most of the day. If hungry you can bring food from Garden Café out to seating. We loved the Waterfront. It was never crowded and we would sit outside there a lot and have drinks. The Atrium was a bit of a nightmare. I don’t understand why they would have such a small area for so many people. The seating is poorly designed and it would be better suited to have stadium seating or something so more people could sit and enjoy it. Go to the Local and watch from above. The Atrium area was always packed and we only once scored folding chairs after searching and dragging them over to the bar area. My parents were on the Not so Newlywed game and we were in the WAY back for that. I don’t know why they don’t utilize the Bliss theatre for more things. Which brings me to activities. Activities: I thought the amount of activities for teens were lacking. It kind of sucked for us since our kids are in 3 different age groups and they actually like hanging out together. There was no “club” they could go to together. They liked the game shows in the atrium but again always crowded. Other than that there wasn’t anything to do on the cold rainy days. Kids liked the go-karts and we all loved the laser tag. I wish we had signed up for the laser tag more than once. Worth the money. The Arcade is pretty small and not worth the money for the few unlimited games with the prepay. The 12 year old went twice and spent about $20. Of course we told him no more than $20 a day and he went twice and spent about $10 each time. We saw Havana and all I can say is Yawn. They are talented performers but no story line and we all found it incredibly boring especially the slow songs. The 12 year old took a hard pass and went back to the cabin. We all loved Jersey Boys though. Even the 12 year old boy liked it. Yes, some cussing but they are pretty much desensitized to that by their horrible parents. ;0) Bars: We only got one free at sea option so went for the drink package. Lots of fun bars and great drinks. Unfortunately we usually drank too much during the day to rally and do much at night. We did do a bar crawl or two where we tried to hit as many as we could by having one drink at each before moving on. We liked the mojito bar but drinks can be pretty sweet after one. They make great Moscow mule everywhere. We also liked the Dark and Stormy but some places made it better than others. District Brew house has a great selection of beers but the On Tap cocktails were a bit strange. We drank them anyways. Excursions: - All excursions booked off ship months in advance. So much cheaper than booking through NCL. My parents couldn’t be as active as we were so they did not do the excursions with us. 5 people for each excursion adds up quickly! $$ • Juneau - We walked around town a bit as our excursion wasn’t until 5:50. We ate lunch at Tracy’s King Crab shack. It was a bit expensive but you have to try the King Crab while you are here. It was fabulous. We shared 2 legs, 2 soups and 4 crab cakes. I didn’t share my beer though. For our excursion we did the Glacier and Dog Sledding trip through Coastal Helicopters. Pricey at $550 a person (NCL $100 more a person) but well worth it. We were lucky we had hats, gloves, fleece and rain coats as it was very cold. Dog camp was awesome though and everything was very professional and informative. The van driver even took us out of the way on the way back to see so many bald eagles it was amazing. Highly recommend this once in a lifetime experience. On and off ship was easy and everything ran smoothly. • Skagway – We packed a lot into this day. Our pre-booked excursion wasn’t until 1:30. We took our time getting off ship and made it into town around 10am. We went to the tour desk in town and asked what we could do and be back by 1:30. We did the Summit Express. Walked into town and caught a van for a 90 round trip minute drive to the top of the summit into Canada and back. We had to go back on ship and get our passports before meeting the van. We didn’t have to go through border crossing in Canada but we did coming back into Alaska. Great tour guide that answered questions and made lots of stops for pictures. Cost was $37 a person. We then went to lunch at the Smokehouse. Great BBQ and beer. Our pre-booked excursion was the Glacier ATV tour. It was a 6 hour excursion that I think was about $350 a person maybe a little more. We took a boat to an area to ATV. The boat ride was about an hour each way and the crew did a great job with pointing things out and telling stories. The ATVs were a blast. Each one holds 4 people but my husband and I had one to ourselves and my kids had another. My 19 year old had a blast driving as did my husband. We were right next to the glacier and got some amazing pictures. We were also on the coast and got to explore that as well. They do provide lunch but we were glad we ate before. Apple sauce, trail mix and some nasty turkey sandwich. Loved talking to the people who work there and hearing their stories as to how they got there. On and off ship was easy and everything ran smoothly. Even going back to get passports was not an issue. • Ketchikan – My husband, father and boys had a salmon fishing trip booked for 7:15. They got in a waiting area early and were there to meet the Captain at 7:10. Can’t believe how smoothly everything goes with getting on and off the ship. They id Ketchikan Charter boats with Captain Dan. I believe it was about $250 a person. They had an amazing time. Caught about 17 fish and were able to keep 8. Captain Dan was great and he even called a bald eagle down to the ship to catch a fish when he threw it. They packed up 18.5 lbs of salmon that was shipped to our house and arrived today (Tuesday). It cost about $200 to ship the prepared fish to us but again, once in a lifetime experience. My mom, daughter and I did the Alaska Kayaking experience. I think about $150 a person. I can’t rave about this one enough. It was a couple Mary and Tim who meet us at the pier. We walked to their boat and got on. They drove us out to a cove where they fitted us with water proof pants and jackets and pulled down the kayaks. My daughter and I were in one and my mom road with Tim. My mother had NO intention of getting in the kayak. She took a bad fall in Olympic National Park on Saturday and was very bruised, plus she had a pace maker put in 4 weeks ago where she couldn’t raise her arm fully. Tim convinced her and he seriously lifted her in and out of the kayak so gently. We saw 100’s of starfish, sea urchins, a sea lion, a minks and sea anemones. It was such a personal tour. We felt like we were the only ones on the water. They only take up to 4 people but if you get a chance book this excursion. Alaskakayakcompany.com • Victoria – I had mixed feelings on this one. It seemed stupid to get off the ship this late at night and we had nothing planned. Well my daughter is an explorer like me and we decided to go for it. Everyone else stayed on the ship. We walked off the ship with no plan. We were greeted by Graham the pedicab driver. A pedicab is essentially a guy biking you around the city. It was $75 a person which we initially thought was way too much. We decided to do it and were so happy we did. Graham was an awesome driver and peddled us all through the city. He even made us stop at a chocolate store where he bought us chocolate covered maple bars which he said we must try in Canada. The city is beautiful and clean. We saw so many sights in the 2 ½ hours and took lots of great pictures. He told us cool ghost stories and other things. Definitely give it a try and ask for Graham! Leaving the ship – We packed our luggage up the night before and left out to pick up in the morning. Go early to pick up tags as there weren’t many left when we went. We wanted a late disembarkment which we got though. We woke up at 8 and headed to Garden Café for some breakfast. They called our color tags around 9:15. There was a line but it moved quickly. We found our luggage easily and walked outside. We went out to the right and took the elevator to the 5th floor. We walked across the bridge to a less populated area. I thin walked to back to the car rental place and picked up our van. I drove back down the street and loaded everyone up with no problems. We spent some time doing tourist things in Seattle. Not a very clean city and had lots of homeless. We did the Underground Tour, Public Market and Wings over Washington. I don’t think Wings over Washington was worth the $20 a person unless you have never done Soaring at Epcot. Very similar to that. Underground tour is good and this was the second time we have done it. The other time was 20 years ago. We had lunch at Pike’s Place Brewery, very good. We drove back towards the airport and again stayed at the Sleep Inn. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Norwegian Bliss Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.5 3.9
Entertainment 4.0 4.0
Public Rooms 4.5 4.1
Fitness Recreation 4.5 3.8
Family 3.5 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.5
Service 4.5 4.1
Value For Money 3.5 3.5

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