897 Seattle Norwegian Pearl Cruise Reviews

Seeing Alaska was my lifelong dream . Thanks to Norwegian Cruise Lines that dream came true ! They took care of everything ! The booked the cruise ,giving me the room I wanted plus booked our airline trips to Seattle and back home. We were ... Read More
Seeing Alaska was my lifelong dream . Thanks to Norwegian Cruise Lines that dream came true ! They took care of everything ! The booked the cruise ,giving me the room I wanted plus booked our airline trips to Seattle and back home. We were picked up at the airport and taken to ship for embarkation . Going through embarkation was really easy , as they had already informed me of what I could bring and what not to bring ,also what to carry in my carry on bags. Our luggage was taken from the airport to our room , we did not have to handle it any. The dining room was waiting for us with plenty of food ! The fresh fruit was sweet and fresh, the breads were So good and there was such a selection for the main course that I can't name them all. Every dining room had plenty of good food for the taking ! The on board entertainment was Excellent ! Never a boring moment ,unless you choose to have one. Our room stewardess was friendly ,sweet ,helpful and kept our room freshly cleaned at all times. The service all over the ship was superb! Everywhere you went the crew was willing and able to see to your every need. This was the first time ever that I have been waited on and not had to cook or wash clothes or wait on someone else . It was Wonderful !! I don't know how one Cruise Line was able to find so many nice and friendly people , but they did. The shore excursions were perfectly planned and executed . There is simply no way they could have been any better ! The Best of Skagway was simply the best ! The fishing trip my husband went on ,was everything he wanted , he caught a dozen fish ! If I am ever fortunate enough to be able to go on another cruise it will definitely be with Norwegian Cruise Line . My vacation was everything I had hoped for and the biggest part of the reason that it was is because NCL saw to it that everything was taken care of for me , all I had to do was relax and enjoy ! Oh yeah , I almost forgot to mention the massage , oh my you want to get one !!! Felt like a hour of heaven ! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My whole family, 14 total, went on this cruise and we had a perfect time! It was better than we imagined and we were thankful for the staff that made it wonderful! Our favorite staff would definitely be Red! The kids LOVED him. There were ... Read More
My whole family, 14 total, went on this cruise and we had a perfect time! It was better than we imagined and we were thankful for the staff that made it wonderful! Our favorite staff would definitely be Red! The kids LOVED him. There were 6 kids that were able to go to the "kids club" and they had a blast! We didn't know how they would enjoy, but they begged each day to go. And the program they did for us on the last day was priceless! I can't say enough positive about this experience. For my first cruise I was super happy!!!!!!!!!! Can't wait to do another, although I know it won't top this since it won't be the same. My family thanks all the staff and crew of the Pearl for making their last Alaska voyage our BEST family vacation ever. Words can't explain how happy my heart is after this trip. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Staff, most were great, but the people working in the buffet area that cleaned the tables sucked! They would just walk past the tables and not even attempt to clean them off. Most time we had to sit at a dirty table and if your lucky they ... Read More
Staff, most were great, but the people working in the buffet area that cleaned the tables sucked! They would just walk past the tables and not even attempt to clean them off. Most time we had to sit at a dirty table and if your lucky they would come clean it off. Food was good in the buffet, but better in the outdoor cafe and the staff were better at cleaning up maybe because it was outside. Dining hall staff were very attentive food was good. Ship was clean, bathroom is larger than Royal Caribbean’s. Loved the alcohol tastings that was very informative, and interesting. But I have never been on a cruise where the workers that ran the excursions were so nice, informative, helpful, overall amazing customer service. I don’t think anyone can top them, and this was our third cruise, so we have been on a few excursions. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
If you walk away unsatisfied with the opportunities this cruise provides, then you are probably hard to satisfy. Balcony Room, 9th floor, Mid ship, Starboard. Great staff, buffets way above average, (remember it IS a BUFFET). Top notch ... Read More
If you walk away unsatisfied with the opportunities this cruise provides, then you are probably hard to satisfy. Balcony Room, 9th floor, Mid ship, Starboard. Great staff, buffets way above average, (remember it IS a BUFFET). Top notch specialty restaurants. And the views were spectacular. Were the Excursions bought on the ship more expensive than booking yourself? Yes they were. But that is the price for the insurances that come with it. They will wait if the excursion runs over... etc. Are you confident in your decision making? Book 'em yourself! YOU make YOUR trip. Can things get jacked up? Sure. Your soup was cold, etc. Wow. Suck it up and get something else. The passengers were the only people we had any issues with. Rude, arrogant and demanding. But I am not going to blame the cruiseline for that. I even had a vendor tell me they dislike dealing with people off NCL cruises. That is the same as letting cold soup give NCL a poor rating. Do your research, ships go where they can, SAFELY. They will not risk going to port if it is going to damage the boat and end the cruise. I could go on, but then you might not like me... lol. It was a phenomenal vacation with 2000 plus great people! I personally feel we did not have enough time in Ketchikan , and arrived to late in Victoria B.C. But that is MY opinion, not the cruises fault. Knew it when I booked it! NCL gave me more than what I signed up for. Gave me opportunities to see the beauty of Alaska. And over fed me, wait, once again, my fault! :) Know the menu before you go. Know the length of stays in each port... You'll do fine. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We went on this particular cruise with this particular cruise line because our son was recently hired as a crew member, and this was the last Alaska cruise we'd be able to take with our son on board. So the destination, Alaska, was ... Read More
We went on this particular cruise with this particular cruise line because our son was recently hired as a crew member, and this was the last Alaska cruise we'd be able to take with our son on board. So the destination, Alaska, was our decision, but the ship and dates were determined by our son. He's a dancer with the production cast, and the entertainment was GREAT, first class every night--singers, dancers, tribute artists, hilarious comedy and a world-famous acrobatic team! Wow and double wow! The house bands were showcases in and of themselves as well. And Cruise Director Vincent is a superstar of energy, personality and talent all rolled into one!! The food was very good--the buffet was great, but too few tables for two and too many half-empty larger tables in the Garden Cafe, so it was often a hassle getting seated. The Indigo and Summer Palace dining rooms were VERY nice--elegant feeling, great waitstaff, delicious food and reasonable portions. The public areas are large and welcoming, but the chair seating everywhere is terrible--uncomfortable chairs arranged in ways that didn't make any sense and were difficult to rearrange. We had an inside cabin, which was all we could afford, and it was really quite fine. It was too cold to take advantage of a balcony on this cruise anyway, but a window would have been nice--maybe next time. Crew members everywhere were uniformly friendly and helpful, and as our cruise progressed and more crew learned that we were the parents of one of them, we really became part of their family. For the size of the ship, it's easy to get around, and for the number of guests, getting on and off at port was very efficient. The only criticism I have is how often and how much they attempt to up-sell you everywhere for everything. I do not enjoy being bothered so much to lay down more money when we've already spend thousands. Maybe most people who cruise like this just have lots more money to spend than we do. Maybe that's what a cruise is these days. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Wanted to visit Alaska - on my 'bucket list!' This cruise was the best for the price I could afford. Embarkation went very smoothly. I booked with NCL for transportation to & from the ship. The driver on the arrival day ... Read More
Wanted to visit Alaska - on my 'bucket list!' This cruise was the best for the price I could afford. Embarkation went very smoothly. I booked with NCL for transportation to & from the ship. The driver on the arrival day made the ride to the ship like an excursion with interesting details about the area we passed through. Disembarkation was made easier with the free valet service which enabled me to get my boarding pass & airline tag for my luggage the night before. Luggage was put out for the crew to collect as usual. Did not see it again until I arrived at my destination! Did wonder whether it would be there. It was! Excellent! Unfortunately, I missed two activities I would have enjoyed on the daily list. Most were of no interest to me. Entertainment, again, I missed the first performance which I would have enjoyed. Did attend the final event which was well done. The food was O.K. but not as good as on prior cruises with another line. Shore excursions were excellent except for that in Victoria. The one I had booked was cancelled due to time/lack of daylight. The one I took should have been cancelled for the same reason. The driver was knowledgeable, but being unable to see what he was talking about made it boring - a waste of time & money - any chance of a refund? Over all, I enjoyed the cruise. The scenery is beautiful. The whale sightings were not as good as hoped for, so may be I'll have to go again!! The crew were all friendly and helpful. I appreciated the time spent in Glacier Bay with the captain ensuring that we were close enough for good views. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
This was a last minute trip and I felt lucky to get on the cruise. Our balcony room seemed smaller than ones we had in the past but the location , deck 9, aft, was perfect. We were disappointed in Icy Point Strait and were missing ... Read More
This was a last minute trip and I felt lucky to get on the cruise. Our balcony room seemed smaller than ones we had in the past but the location , deck 9, aft, was perfect. We were disappointed in Icy Point Strait and were missing Juneau, The route was different too so there was less scenery on the way. We had been on the Pearl previously and it was marvelous. The crew was fresh and seemed exceptional. The bartenders, Elaine and Will knew our names right off and were extremely attentive. The food was also good. We ate in 3 speciality restaurants, Sheehan’s pub and the Great Outdoors cafe for breakfast. All was great. One thing that was a little odd was that even though we had the drink card, we had to pay for coffee when we had, say a Bailey’s Irish Cream and Coffee. We heard a lot of people complain about that. We did not do any shore excursions as we had been to Alaska multiple times. We did enjoy the shopping in Skagway and had lunch at the Cape Fox Lodge in Ketchikan. I would go again but make sure the route was the Inside Passage and that it went to Juneau. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Overall the Cruise was excellent value and my partner realised a life time ambition to visit Alaska. Although we did see a number of whales in their natural habitat, that was our main goal, this was generally at a distance, particularly ... Read More
Overall the Cruise was excellent value and my partner realised a life time ambition to visit Alaska. Although we did see a number of whales in their natural habitat, that was our main goal, this was generally at a distance, particularly on the whale watching excursion, and overall we were very disappointed. Food and service overall was excellent, staff very friendly and attentive. Although the entertainment staff were very enthusiastic and helpful the actual entertainment, with the exception of Nicola Ward, who was fabulous, was very average at best. We booked a whale watching and zip lining excursion with the cruise but we're very disappointed with them. The communication from the excursion staff was poor and offered very little value add. The excursion providers were very helpful but we were appalled to find out we could have booked the excursions directly at the port for approximately 50% less than NCL. There is no way NCL can justify the extortionate price they charged for the excursion and we would recommend to anyone going forward to book direct. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We made the mistake of Carnival twice (first and last) then we took a cruise on the Spirit. We were amazed and had the greatest experience. Next cruise ~ Alaska. Only obvious we would try the Norwegian experience once again, aboard the ... Read More
We made the mistake of Carnival twice (first and last) then we took a cruise on the Spirit. We were amazed and had the greatest experience. Next cruise ~ Alaska. Only obvious we would try the Norwegian experience once again, aboard the Pearl. From the moment we entered until we left, the ship, the staff and the ports made for one dynamic vacation. There was a medical emergency that hindered our duration in Victoria but the way that the Captain and crew handled the situation made me feel even more confident that passengers come first. What a team they had aboard the ship. The care they gave to the individual and the response to the guests thereafter made me realize the professional, personal care they give to each and every one. The Captain could not apologize enough for the inconvenience he did not create nor anyone else on the ship could be accountable. So many were so reassured that if something should ever happen, Norwegian would take care of you, good or bad! The food, the ports, the activities and the consideration make this ship, Captain and crew one experience that should not be missed! THANK YOU NORWEGIAN - SEE YOU NEXT TRIP! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise for our 20th anniversary trip and were quite excited to go to Alaska. However, when all was said and done, it was an average experience at best. The best part of the experience was the room - we selected a mid-ship ... Read More
We chose this cruise for our 20th anniversary trip and were quite excited to go to Alaska. However, when all was said and done, it was an average experience at best. The best part of the experience was the room - we selected a mid-ship mini suite. It was large and had many storage options. The only criticism there would be that the closet doors wouldn't fully open because they kept banging into the bed. Our cabin steward, Raymond, was fantastic. He was so personable and friendly and wanted to know more about us as a couple. Our cruise was his last cruise before he got his 2 months off to go home to the Philippines to visit his family. The shore excursions were very pricey, though we'd cruised about 5 times prior to this trip, so we knew they would be expensive, but the cost doesn't seem to match the quality of the tours. Two of our excursions were great, the other one was okay. Full disclosure, my husband and I are not joiners, tending to be on the introverted side, and we were bored most of the time. I wasn't into playing very overpriced bingo (we played once and it was $50 for 3 games! Yikes!) You can only play so much trivia, especially when drunk people keep shouting out the answers to the questions. We had the unlimited beverage package, which we got through a promotion and was nice, but you have to pay 20% gratuity on each drink. Yes, it only adds up to about $2 a drink, but it'd be nice if free meant free - not that you had to pay a mandatory gratuity on a free package. If the workers are so underpaid that there are required gratuities, perhaps consider paying them more. We had a couple really good bartenders, but the majority were kinda cranky - not sure if they were close to the end of their contracts, but they seemed to need a break. They work 7 days a week for 8 months straight...perhaps if I had that schedule, I'd be cranky too. In Icy Strait Point, it was cold and rainy, which I actually like...it was the only weather that felt like we were really in Alaska. We did a whale watching and wilderness hike (very short hike - only about 1000 yards), and saw humpback whales, Alaskan brown bears, and bald eagles. This was a great tour, and I highly recommend it, though again, very expensive. We were in port from 1pm - 7pm, which was plenty of time. The port itself is very small, with not much to do. It was such an ideal amount of time that we actually left about 20 minutes early, as everyone was back on board. In Skagway, we did the Mushers Camp and Dog Sled adventure or something like that. It was fantastic if you have a love for dogs like my husband and I do. We drove about 25 minutes away from port in a fairly nice shuttle bus. When we got there, we walked just a bit into the camp area and got into a large jeep-type vehicle for the trek up the mountain. When we got close, you could hear the dogs barking and barking - they were so excited to see us! We went on a little sled ride, where the dogs pulled us on a summer cart (with wheels), which was great fun. When we were done with that, back on the jeep-thing and back down the mountain where we got a very informative session about sled dogs and the Iditarod race. Then - the best part... we got to hold some sled dog puppies!! They were so sweet and happy to see us. When we were done with the tour, we went to a local restaurant and had lunch, then shopped a bunch, then went back to the ship. We were back on the ship at 2ish. We were in port from 7am - 7pm, which in all honesty was too long. There just isn't enough to do there, unless you book two excursions - and I'm too cheap for that. Ketchican was by far our favorite port. It was a quaint little town, and we wish we had had more time to explore that port. We did a wildlife and all you can eat crab tour. It was okay. Basically, you get put on a boat (after just getting off a boat), taken into an inlet of the ocean and they pull up a crab pot so you can see the crab and hold it, if you want. It was fine, but underwhelming. When we got back to the shop, we were excited to get to the crab feast. Only problem, they stuff about 110 people into a room that holds about 50. You have to sit with folks you don't know if you didn't go as a group, which was annoying. Also, the all you can eat crab is literally only crab. No potatoes, corn, or anything - just crab. And, not Alaska King Crab, which I thought it was going to be, but Dungeness crab which was still good. I can only eat one flavor for so long though - so that was too much just crab - oh, and a piece of cheesecake at the end. We were in port from 7am - 1pm, which just wasn't long enough. If I hadn't done a little shopping before the excursion - Sockeye Sam's will hold your purchases for when you get back from your excursion! - we wouldn't have had any time at all to look around. The general consensus from people I heard was the same - this port needs more time. Glacier Bay was beautiful! There isn't a whole lot to be said for the day, since you're at sea some more, but it was beautiful country when the fog lifts - it's magical. We were able to go into the bay and see Johns Hopkins glacier up close and personal, and the captain did a couple circles, so you could see it no matter where you were on the ship. I would say that this day seemed long - we had the rangers on board until right around 1pm, so we could have been on our way to Ketchican sooner, I think. Would like to say how awesome Victoria, BC was, but I wasn't able to get off the ship. There was a medical emergency on board early that morning, which caused us to be almost 5 hours late into port. When you don't get there until 6pm anyway, getting in at almost 11pm, when you have to be up early to disembark seemed silly. They let folks off the ship at around 11:15pm, and they had to be back on board at 12:15am. Seriously - 1 hour??!! That seemed stupid to me. There were no excursions, obviously, so we just stayed on the ship. This was a huge disappointment to me. I would never complain about it being because of a medical emergency, and actually, the lifeboat that took the person off the ship was directly beneath our room, so we watched the whole procedure - it was fascinating. I hope the person is ok and that they made it. However, I wish we hadn't even bothered to stop in Victoria - an hour just seemed silly. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
I gave it a poor review because originally we were to go to Juneau and instead went to Icy Strait. Then the last stop was to be Victoria 6pm to 12 pm. There was a medical emergency on the boat and our stay in Victoria was from 10:45 to ... Read More
I gave it a poor review because originally we were to go to Juneau and instead went to Icy Strait. Then the last stop was to be Victoria 6pm to 12 pm. There was a medical emergency on the boat and our stay in Victoria was from 10:45 to 12:15. By the time you get off and then back on you have no time. Also it was so late everything was closed. The entertainment was very poor on the trip also. When we think if cruise entertainment we think Vegas. It was nothing of Vegas quality. Alaska was absolutely amazing. The staff was very friendly and did a wonderful job. Our room was spacious enough and comfortable. The food was good. We only ate at the complimentary restaurants. We did do excursions and they were great. Like I said before, Alaska is amazing. The views are breathtaking. We just thought for the amount we pay for a cruise it should be amazing all around. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Alaska was our destination of choice. The cruise line offered an array of activities and site enjoyable to our party or 17. We loved the staff, the ship's director Vincent, and the drinks, of course. We enjoyed the entertainment and ... Read More
Alaska was our destination of choice. The cruise line offered an array of activities and site enjoyable to our party or 17. We loved the staff, the ship's director Vincent, and the drinks, of course. We enjoyed the entertainment and the food. Our family and friends were just as thrilled as us. We enjoyed the sites, however, we would have enjoyed more time at Ketchikan and perhaps another port to add to the itinerary. We played games and engaged in public activities to include giant connect four, dancing, and dodgeball with complete strangers. I met people from all over the globe who share a common interest, a genuine love for Alaska. Posted are pictures of both the ship and a few of the excursions we were able to enjoy while spending time in Alaska. I encourage all people to take a cruise at some point in their life, whether it is to Alaska or a warmer destination. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We really enjoyed our cruise to Alaska and the ship was awesome. It was recently refurbished so everything was nice and clean. I would recommend the ship to anyone wanting to see parts of Alaska without being on a huge ship. I really ... Read More
We really enjoyed our cruise to Alaska and the ship was awesome. It was recently refurbished so everything was nice and clean. I would recommend the ship to anyone wanting to see parts of Alaska without being on a huge ship. I really wanted to go on the Bliss but was glad to be on the Pearl due to price being cheaper. The pro's far outweigh the cons on this ship. The major things that bothered us was that the pull out sofa bed in the cabin was very hard and difficult to sleep on. It needs a topper of some kind to make it an easy sleeping choice when you are sharing a room with others. Secondly the internet was horrible! I paid over 30 dollars for internet to be able to check in on our return flights and the service was so slow. We had dial up service in the 80's that was faster and better than the ship internet. The employees and staff of the ship was excellent except one female employee in the O'Sheehans dining that was not very friendly and very slow! She was the greater and seater so your first impression of the place was with her and she failed miserably. They should move her to the kitchen or something. We thought maybe she was just having a bad day but went in there 3 other times and she was this same sulky and slow demeanor each time. The drinks in the cabin fridges is a terrible idea. If I want drinks in there, I should go get them myself and put them in there from the gift store. We noticed that someone had opened a bottle of the whiskey and replaced it with water so reported it immediately and they didn't charge us with it but had be not noticed it, I am sure we would have been charged that 9.00 or more for the bottle. The area where the coffee pot is located is very hard to plug in because the cord is too short on the coffee pot. There should be something else done to make that a little better and easier to use. With 4 people in a room, they only gave us 2 coffee cups. We brought 2 more coffee cups to the room from the dining area and they removed them from our room when they cleaned our room and did not replace them. All in all these are very small things and all in all the cruise was great. We were on the 9th deck in room 9534. I would highly recommend this location to anyone as it was a beautiful view of everything and was the port side for 2 of the stops. The balcony was terrific. Highly recommend it to anyone taking a cruise to Alaska. It was the best place to view everything and it was right there were we were sleeping. We never closed the patio door, even while we were sleeping. The sound of the waves and the beautiful scenery 24 hours a day was awesome. We didn't miss a minute of it. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
This was our first cruise, Alaska was on my husband's bucket list. Our entire experience from embarkation to disembarkation was easy and efficient. We enjoyed the variety of dining options and the entertainment in the bar areas as ... Read More
This was our first cruise, Alaska was on my husband's bucket list. Our entire experience from embarkation to disembarkation was easy and efficient. We enjoyed the variety of dining options and the entertainment in the bar areas as well as the shows. The excursions were very organized, easy to access and well worth the money. We cannot say enough about our ship steward, he was attentive and pleasant. Our room was clean, with lots of room. Fresh flowers and a bottle of sparkling wine on arrival. We did a great deal of walking around the decks for exercise. The entertainers outside the cigar bar was wonderful, the pianist was engaging and fun. The string trio was very good, these three ladies were very talented. The specialty dining rooms were excellent, nice variety and change from the main dining rooms. Having a butler was an uncomfortable and odd experience for us. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We took a cruise to Alaska 25 years ago on another cruise line and now my wife and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary with our son, daughter in law to be, our daughter and her boyfriend on the Norwegian Pearl to Alaska. This was ... Read More
We took a cruise to Alaska 25 years ago on another cruise line and now my wife and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary with our son, daughter in law to be, our daughter and her boyfriend on the Norwegian Pearl to Alaska. This was such an unbelievable cruise where everything went perfect from getting on the ship to getting off the ship. The weather was perfect and the staff on the cruise ship was so helpful and very pleasant. We all enjoyed everything that was on the cruise ship from the great food, the entertainment, the casinos, ports, scenery etc.., We will never forget our 25th wedding anniversary on the Norwegian Pearl and we are so pleased that we were able to share it with our children and their loved ones. I am definitely looking in for next year to cruise Norwegian again and can't wait! Thank you Norwegian Pearl staff for making our 25th wedding anniversary a memorable one. Great Job to all! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
I chose this cruise primarily to visit Glacier Bay while there are still glaciers to see. I have cruised with Norwegian before on this class of ship, and enjoy the many venues for music, entertainment, and places to quietly catch up ... Read More
I chose this cruise primarily to visit Glacier Bay while there are still glaciers to see. I have cruised with Norwegian before on this class of ship, and enjoy the many venues for music, entertainment, and places to quietly catch up on reading...…. This cruise was remarkable for the quality of the classical music provided by the "Four String Trio". What a delight it was to hear Mozart, Bach, Shostakovich, and VillaLobos, as well as favorite show tunes...… The women of the trio were responsive to the audience, competent, and obviously in love with their art. There has been an obvious improvement in the embarcation procedures. The line was short, The desk clerk was efficient and friendly. I was happily surprised to find that the pool was warm enough to allow swimming, even on a late September cruise to Alaska. Two areas of improvement: It seemed that the Hostess at the Asian Restaurant was unhappy, and less than welcoming. At one of the String performances, a waitress in the Spinnaker Lounge spoke loudly while the trio was playing. I signaled to her to please keep her voice down. She looked at me and shrugged while continuing to talk at the same volume for another 30 or 40 seconds. It was so atypical of the service from other members of the crew...... I am sad to see that the Jewel class of Norwegian boats is leaving Seattle. I might try the larger ships, Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We sailed on the Pearl this September because we enjoyed our trip to Alaska last year for 10 days on the Jewel. The itenary was similar although the ports were slightly different. Overall this was an amazing trip to Alaska. Glacier Bay was ... Read More
We sailed on the Pearl this September because we enjoyed our trip to Alaska last year for 10 days on the Jewel. The itenary was similar although the ports were slightly different. Overall this was an amazing trip to Alaska. Glacier Bay was stunning. We had beautiful sunny weather every day which is very unusual for September. We went to Icy Strait Point, Ketchikan, Skagway and Victoria. Unfortunately our time in Victoria was from 6pm to midnight. It got dark 30 minutes after arriving and it was useless to book any type of excursion in the dark. We wanted to see the beautiful gardens but it was just not possible. NCL needs to change the time in this port to a daytime arrival. Also it cost $13 per person to shuttle into town which is a 25 minute walk. The shuttle should be free. The ship is very nice, well appointed and very clean. Staff was very friendly and for the most part attentive. This ship has a smaller number of passengers so it generally does not feel crowded. Getting on and off in the ports was easy. The only time we felt crowded was in the garden cafe which serves meals buffet style. At times it was difficult to find a seat for breakfast and lunch. The sit down option in the Summer Palace was a nice retreat for an leisurely meal. The excursions are very pricey and we chose not to book any this time. We were able to get seats on the train in Skagway at the last minute for a cheaper price than the ship offered. We find that the price for excursions is really prohibitive for a family, some would cost $800 and up for 4 people. The spa services are priced outrageously high. We went to the ladies pamper party for a “free” facial. This is a do it yourself theme where you cleanse, tone, & moisturize your own face then the attendant applies sun glow. However, you must sit through the presentations to buy additional services and this was a very hard sale technique. The spa manager makes it sound like you will get a deal but the reality is the services are priced too high. At the end the pressure is on to buy the sun glow product. Would not recommend going to this. The dinners in the specialty restaurants are worth it. We dined at Cagney’s, Moderno, and Teppanyaki. All meals were fantastic. Overall this was a great cruise to Alaska with beautiful scenery. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
I have a dairy allergy and this cruiseline only accommodates if you pre-order your food the day before and you must eat at the summer palace only for every meal. This really isn’t fair to the people you are with. Isn’t the point of ... Read More
I have a dairy allergy and this cruiseline only accommodates if you pre-order your food the day before and you must eat at the summer palace only for every meal. This really isn’t fair to the people you are with. Isn’t the point of being on a cruise to be able to get variety and try all the restaurants? I tried eating at other places and told the waiters I had a dairy allergy and they wouldn’t let me eat much except for chicken fajitas without the fajitas, burgers without buns, no noodles at the noodle bar, etc. I basically lived off of French fries for the whole week. My next complaint was disembarkment. My husband and I took advantage of the port valet service. When we got our boarding passes in our cabin they separated us on our long flight home! I don’t love flying and I certainly didn’t want to sit far away from my husband. When I called the airline I had to pay an extra $108.00 to upgrade our tickets to at least be in the same row! After all the money I spent on this cruise, that was disappointing. Otherwise the cruise entertainment was a blast! I had a memorable vacation. Alaska was so beautiful, it must be on everyone’s bucket list! The shore excursions were the best!!! I really felt like I got into Alaska. We stayed away from shops and got to see Alaska! It was beautiful! The balcony room is a must! It was clean and beautiful. We got to see humpbacks, seals, sea otters from our room! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
This size of ship is perfect for Alaska cruises. It doesn't have many pools or a water park but you don't really need it in a Alaska cruise either as the weather would be too cool for swimming anyway. One of my gripe was ... Read More
This size of ship is perfect for Alaska cruises. It doesn't have many pools or a water park but you don't really need it in a Alaska cruise either as the weather would be too cool for swimming anyway. One of my gripe was the boarding process at Seattle. Once you're checked in with the desk agent, you go to the waiting area. Everybody was so confused there because they have no idea when's their turn to board. There're no signs to direct people where to sit. How was the waiting area divided? By room type? By class? We don't know. The guy telling you to board was all the way at the corner and if you're at the other side of the room, you couldn't hear him even with the microphone and big speaker he was using. Everybody just kind of get in line without following any direction. Once on the ship, everything is nice. There're a lot of kids onboard. More than I expected. But not to the point that it's annoying. My 4 year old had a lot of company. I always like NCL's kids program. They have plenty of activities to keep my daughter occupied and they gave us an actual phone (instead of a pager) while my daugher is there. Thought the phone only works on the ship. It was our first Alaskan cruise and it was awesome. Nice shore excursion offering. Whale watching is a must do. We were lucky enough to see a groupe of 5 humpback whales together at Hoonah. I wish the ship could stop at more glaciers though. I also didn't really like the stop at Victoria, BC. It was a very short stop (4 hours?). By the time we got there, it was already late afternoon. We joined a bus tour and the sun wouldset by the time we reached the mid point of the tour. We couldn't really see anything when it's dark especially with the bus' tinted window. Service and cabin are overall nice. Our stateroom steward was attentive but he accenditally threw away my wife's slippers. NCL didn't really do anything about it beside offering me a "cabin search" which they will search our cabin for the slippers. The cabin is not big. Why would I want some of your guy to go through all of our belongings to look for my slippers? Other than that, they only offered us a verbal apology. Entertainment on the ship was nothing to brag about. The Priscilla show was nice but there was a mind reading show featureing a couple... the show was not good. We all knew it's fake but it was so bad that I could almost tell how they did it. We left the show when it's not even half way done. Other than the small problems, it was a nice cruise. I'd definitely go back for another one. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
I choose this cruise because it went out of Seattle. While the cruise was great still room for improvement, hot tubs where just luke warm and a few other on board activities other then trivia would be nice. Other wise was great.I would ... Read More
I choose this cruise because it went out of Seattle. While the cruise was great still room for improvement, hot tubs where just luke warm and a few other on board activities other then trivia would be nice. Other wise was great.I would still use NCL again. Summer palace needs to improve service , while Indigo resturant along with buffet was really good. Shore excursions where a little on the expensive side. Loved the relaxing atmosphere on the ship. Less jewelry stores and more everyday kind of stores would be nice, also have prices on items in store. Ship was crowed but things moved smoothly and disembarking was easy. Cabin was kept clean and neat shower is a little on the small side. I took a look at kids activities for furture cruise with grandkids and actitives where nice and varied. Seeing a new port (icey straits) was a nice change from the usual ports. Go Ncl you will really enjoy it. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
This was the first cruise I've ever been to, and it couldn't have been more enjoyable. Starting with the crew - super attentive and obliging. The ship itself was a very cheerful place to be in. The variety of dining was ... Read More
This was the first cruise I've ever been to, and it couldn't have been more enjoyable. Starting with the crew - super attentive and obliging. The ship itself was a very cheerful place to be in. The variety of dining was excellent, food was always fresh, the assortment of dishes was simply wonderful - to all tastes. My husband enjoyed the well-equipped gym, and I walked on the deck a lot, marveling at the views. The ship made a perfect slow sailing through Glacier Bay, that was something to see. Entertainment was most enjoyable as well - my favorite was "Elvis" impersonation. Ports of call were smartly chosen, we explored them with interest. Everything (the views, the comforts, the food, the shows, the service) was like royal treatment. I feel rested and renewed. We stayed in Seattle for two more days after the cruise and explored the city. All in all I thoroughly enjoyed my vacation! Would definitely love to go on another cruise in the future. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
I chose this cruise because Alaska has always this giant land mass separated from the lower 48. i have read about it. I have viewed countless documentaries about it. I have viewed numerous tv shows about it. I decided to do something ... Read More
I chose this cruise because Alaska has always this giant land mass separated from the lower 48. i have read about it. I have viewed countless documentaries about it. I have viewed numerous tv shows about it. I decided to do something about it. The Norwegian Pearl was a great ship. The ship's crew was warm, friendly and helpful. The food was great. There were plenty of entertainment choices. Norwegian's casual dress code put formal dress nights and the unnecessary expense into moth balls. You can wear anything respectable. Tshirts, trunks, bathing suits, shorts on deck and in ports. Alaska experiences 325 rainy days per year; especially in September. Remarkably, we had 7 unseasonably sunny days. The locals sited that the sunny weather in September was truly a rare occurrence. The onshore shops that sold local goods were my favorites because I wanted to contribute to the local economy. The White Pass Railroad train ride in Skagway is a must do excursion. I would schedule this in advance of the cruise because it is the most popular excursion. If you wait until you ge onboard, it may be too late. Ketchikan was my favorite port. The city is beautiful and full of fascinating thing to see. Especially the totem park. I plan to take this cruise again in the future. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
For my 50th Birthday, the other half wanted to a bucket list gift for me, a vacation to Alaska. I got to pick the dates, ship, excursions, etc. It was stress free from the beginning to the end. The stateroom was clean, the dining was ... Read More
For my 50th Birthday, the other half wanted to a bucket list gift for me, a vacation to Alaska. I got to pick the dates, ship, excursions, etc. It was stress free from the beginning to the end. The stateroom was clean, the dining was excellent, especially Cagney's (steak is delicious), and O' Sheehan's (my other half loved the shepherds pie) enjoyed the entertainment and the fitness center had all the equipment equivalent to hometown local gym. One thing I really enjoyed was the animals created out of bath towels. The steward was very polite and attentive to our stateroom. The weather was perfect for our Alaskan vacation The first stop was Juneau. We visited the salmon hatchery, Mendenhall Gardens and then the Mendenhall Glacier. There was a harbor seal that was quite the character trying to capture himself a fine fish. Unbelievable on how fast they can swim. Seen bald eagles and a porcupine at the Mendenhall Glacier and hiked to Nugget Falls. It was a great evening for a walk. The second stop was Skagway and did the White Pass Railway excursion. Learned a lot about how people lived during the gold rush and how difficult life was for them. Then off the the suspension bridge which was awesome. If your afraid of heights, then the bridge is not for you. Skagway is a small town, but it also had a lot of charm. My favorite stop was Ketchikan. I just fell in love with this town. People were friendly and had many cute stores. Got a lot of deals since it was getting towards the end of the cruising season. We went on a floatplane excursion and had an opportunity to see mountain goats, harbor seals and the pilot even landed the plane is a lake in the middle of the fjord. It was an amazing excursion and one that I highly recommend. The other half and I enjoyed our breakfast "outdoors" while going through the Tongass National park / Glacier Bay. They had a ranger on board telling us about how these mountains were named and the wild life. We even seen part of the glacier fall into the bay.. It was a cool thunder sound.. It's hard to explain so you have to experience it yourself. Our last stop was Victoria which I thought was kind of "meh". We arrived at 6 pm and we were only off the ship for a couple of hours. We thought it was a bit pricey.. Nice place to pass through, but not go back.. I enjoyed my Alaskan Vacation and it was great that I got to take this trip off my bucket list, but I think I am going to put it back on. I would definitely do this trip again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My husband and I sailed with adult family members for this vacation cruise. We left the kids at home to enjoy some time away. I enjoyed the freestyle way of cruising. I liked that we didn't have a schedule and could do what we wanted ... Read More
My husband and I sailed with adult family members for this vacation cruise. We left the kids at home to enjoy some time away. I enjoyed the freestyle way of cruising. I liked that we didn't have a schedule and could do what we wanted when we wanted. The Buffet dining was average. I felt like the food was a little bland and the options could use some work (the pizza was terrible). We did make reservations at other restaurants on the ship, all of which were amazing, but you had to pay. The person who kept our cabin clean did a great job, and the staff was very timely when we called to ask for more towels. We had the unlimited drinks package which was awesome. Will, the bartender, was a so great and treated us like his own family. Overall, we all had a really had a great time. I would sail Norwegian again if given the opportunity. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
INTRO Despite the fact that our NCL cruise to Mexico in 2008 on the Star still ranked the worst of our 14 cruises to date, we decided to give NCL another try due to price and convenience on a round trip to Alaska out of Seattle where we ... Read More
INTRO Despite the fact that our NCL cruise to Mexico in 2008 on the Star still ranked the worst of our 14 cruises to date, we decided to give NCL another try due to price and convenience on a round trip to Alaska out of Seattle where we live. We traveled with my brother and SIL and I am happy to report that overall, we had an excellent experience. We started by booking an inside and ended up in a mini-suite due to price changes and calling NCL to change cabins. Brother and SIL kept their inside cabin. EMBARKATION Very easy. Son dropped us off in front of the pier at about 11:30 and it took not more than about 30 minutes to check in and get on board. We were told that rooms wouldn’t be ready until 1:30 or 2:00. Having known this, we’d decided to meet for lunch in the Summer Palace Dining room which was a great decision. The buffet on embarkation on every other cruise we’ve taken has been a madhouse. So, we had a nice leisurely lunch and were about done when announcements came that rooms were ready. ROOM We ended up in a mini-suite which was great but I wouldn’t pay extra for if given the choice between it and a balcony. I don’t know the difference between it and a regular balcony but it did have a bathtub and a mini coffee pot (probably the best part). Also a curtain that separated the bed area from the couch/tv/balcony area. This was actually handy when one wanted to sleep a bit later. My brother had an inside cabin which was quite a bit smaller with less storage but was suitable for them. They were a bit disappointed with their cabin steward though, having missed making up their cabin a couple of times. Raymond, our steward was excellent. He always greeted us by name and gave us the greatest towel animals ever. We were on deck 11 which I would probably avoid in a warmer climate as it is directly below the pool deck. Not a lot of folks out there in this climate but when we were out on the balcony we could hear chairs being moved around above us. FOOD Unlike our prior NCL cruise we found the food was acceptable to pretty good. I don’t expect gourmet dining on a mass market cruise ship but I do expect to find decent things to eat. For dinner, we mostly ate at the dining room – preferring the Indigo which, with more subtle lighting, has an atmosphere more like a restaurant. The buffet was pretty typical with what must be powdered scrambled eggs but egg/omelet stations as well. TIP – The farther back in the buffet area you go, generally the less crowded it will be. We also found that they had different lunch options than the rest of the buffet and enjoyed a very good German lunch one day. We ate lunch twice in the dining room and found it odd that the menu was the same both days. Our server said it was the same for the entire week. I don’t recall that being the case on other cruises, but I don’t think we ate lunch in the dining room very often so I could certainly be wrong. We ate once at Moderno which offers an excellent salad bar and a meat overload. It was fine, but don’t think I’ll be going to this type a restaurant again in the near future. DH is gluten free due to celiac disease and they noted that in their system when we boarded and were aware any time either my DH or I (as opposed to those we traveled with) gave their cards when being seated for dinner. They offered DH GF bread with dinner a couple of times but he’s not overly fond of it so didn’t ask himself. He did ask about items at the buffet once or twice and had a chef come out and walk him through what he could eat. I’d been a bit concerned about the GF issue but I think they accommodated very well. ENTERTAINMENT I usually hate production shows on cruises but agreed to go to the opening night on this cruise and was very pleasantly surprised. In addition, we attended the comedy show, the Not So Newlywed Show and the Elvis impersonator show, all of which we enjoyed. We went to a karaoke session one night (my second time at karaoke) and I’ve decided it’s not my thing. My SIL and I sat in the piano bar one night and enjoyed the performer. I thought he was an excellent piano player but the singing could have been better. Did see the bar packed on subsequent nights. DH loves trivia so we played at that usually once or twice a day and had fun. DH and I went bowling on the first night which was really rolling seas and that was pretty funny. I think I scored 39 and he got 54. PORTS We had fabulous weather the entire time. Highs 62-70 degrees and sunny at least in the afternoon. The only day I put anything really warm on was when were in Glacier Bay. Mostly t-shirts and maybe a sweater, windbreaker or fleece to throw on. So as you’ve read many times before - layer up! We’d been to Alaska once before doing Tracy Arm rather than Glacier Bay which we did on this cruise but otherwise, the ports were the same. Tours are quite expensive and we did this more for the cruise than the ports so didn’t do a lot. • Juneau – Short time in port from 2:00 pm to 10:00 pm. Took the tram up to Mount Roberts and went on a short hike. Fabulous views from up there with the best pictures probably being right as you exit the tram. Well worth the price. Walked around and did some shopping after. • Skagway – We docked early so looked around the little tourist town. Got our NPS passport books stamped at the museum then walked to our meeting point for our Chilkoot Rail/Bus tour. We took the train up to White Pass which is in Canada and then took a bus back down, making several stops for pictures along the way rather than taking the train both ways. It was fun standing out on the platform between cars. • Glacier Bay – Obviously not a port but definitely a highlight. Our longest stop was at Johns Hopkins glacier where we saw some small chunks of ice break off. That was followed by a short visit to the Margaret (sp?) glacier where there was one huge calving, sending broken ice all the way up to the ship. The views are fabulous but I had no idea about the loud, booming sounds when the fell. It was amazing! • Ketchikan – Gets about 5X more rain than our hometown in Seattle but another good day with temps in the low 60s and some sunshine. Also another short day in that we had to be back on board by about 12:45 pm. We went to Creek Street and then did the walking tour you can find online. It was interesting to see some residential neighborhoods in addition to the main tourist area. Best of all was seeing the salmon spawning area as shown on the map – literally hundreds of salmon just sitting there. Similar sites in a couple of other areas along the walk. Also lots of dead fish everywhere that didn’t smell very good especially with the tide out, but that’s part of the process. • Victoria – This was a very short stop from 6:00 pm to midnight. DH was tired and having been to Victoria several times decided to stay aboard and pack up (thanks honey!) So the other 3 of us took the bus from the port to downtown ($13 pp roundtrip). Victoria is a popular weekend trip from Seattle and we’d all been there a couple of times before. We walked around a bit and decided to go back to the ship. The four of us had our last dinner at Indigo about 9:30 pm and went to bed after that. DEBARKATION Since we had the luxury of having our son pick us up we’d chosen the latest debarkation time at 9:15 so had a leisurely breakfast in the buffet and went back to our room to await our luggage tag color being called. I believe the first call for walk-off only came about 7:00 or 7:15. They called several groups off about 9:00 am and maybe too 20 minutes to get through the line and customs. We’d texted him earlier so son had parked at the garage across the street and was waiting for us. Easy! Too bad we don’t live in California or Florida! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Norwegian Pearl Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 3.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 1.0 3.4
Service 4.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.0

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