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The Norwegian Pearl is a beautiful ship! Of course we didn't know that when we booked this cruise almost 2 years ago. We wanted the freedom of freestyle dining & our destination of choice was the Panama Canal. It also had taken me many years to talk my spouse into trying a cruise (about 20 years). I also wanted to use the time in between booking & sailing to talk about cruising & do some information searching on the computer about the ship, NCL & all the ports we would be visiting. We did purchase trip insurance too; this gave us peace of mind in case we had unforeseen circumstances. Since we live in the snowy northeast part of the country, we flew to Miami the day before we boarded the Pearl; we also stayed one night after disembarking from the ship. If we had known that we could have gone from the ship to the airport, we may not have booked the one night after the cruise. NCL offers transportation from the ship to Miami International if your flight is after 12PM; I don't know the cost but I'm sure it's cheaper than staying the night at a hotel. The NCL Pearl is beautiful inside & out! We chose a balcony cabin so that we could see exactly how the ship goes through the Panama Canal; we stayed on board that particular day to see the entire process. We not only watched the Pearl go through but also the ship next to us too. Once we learned the layout of the ship we both felt more comfortable in our stateroom which had a king size bed, a small sofa & a wall hung flat panel tv. Our bathroom was small but very adequate. Storage is tight but that was expected. We attended the Stardust Theater show almost every evening at 7:30PM; there's another show at 9:30PM. The entertainment surpassed our expectations many nights. We had breakfast without fail at the Garden buffet (12th floor) every morning which served such a variety we never tired of eating breakfast there. For dinner, we liked the Indigo (6th floor) or the Summer Palace (same menu as the Indigo). We tried O'Shenihan's twice whose appetizer wings were excellent & who excelled in shephard's pie. Both O'Shenihan's & the oriental restaurant had very limited menus. The spa on board ran many specials; I had a manicure & pedicure while we were at sea & which lasted the entire 11 day cruise plus! Most of the ports of call you could disembark easily; there were 2 ports where tenders were used. Belize City & Panama used tenders to bring you to land. When checking in on the 1st day, NCL takes your photo; then gives you a NCL card which you use for all transactions including leaving & returning to the ship. That's how you're accounted for when the ship leaves for the next port. Your photo isn't on the card but is on the manned computer as you leave & enter the ship. My spouse enjoyed the cruise so much he wants to book another one! It certainly took us long enough for the 1st one!!!

OUR FIRST CRUISE & WE CHOSE A WINNER!

Norwegian Pearl Cruise Review by gmomt4

4 people found this helpful
Trip Details
The Norwegian Pearl is a beautiful ship! Of course we didn't know that when we booked this cruise almost 2 years ago. We wanted the freedom of freestyle dining & our destination of choice was the Panama Canal. It also had taken me many years to talk my spouse into trying a cruise (about 20 years). I also wanted to use the time in between booking & sailing to talk about cruising & do some information searching on the computer about the ship, NCL & all the ports we would be visiting. We did purchase trip insurance too; this gave us peace of mind in case we had unforeseen circumstances. Since we live in the snowy northeast part of the country, we flew to Miami the day before we boarded the Pearl; we also stayed one night after disembarking from the ship. If we had known that we could have gone from the ship to the airport, we may not have booked the one night after the cruise. NCL offers transportation from the ship to Miami International if your flight is after 12PM; I don't know the cost but I'm sure it's cheaper than staying the night at a hotel.

The NCL Pearl is beautiful inside & out! We chose a balcony cabin so that we could see exactly how the ship goes through the Panama Canal; we stayed on board that particular day to see the entire process. We not only watched the Pearl go through but also the ship next to us too. Once we learned the layout of the ship we both felt more comfortable in our stateroom which had a king size bed, a small sofa & a wall hung flat panel tv. Our bathroom was small but very adequate. Storage is tight but that was expected.

We attended the Stardust Theater show almost every evening at 7:30PM; there's another show at 9:30PM. The entertainment surpassed our expectations many nights. We had breakfast without fail at the Garden buffet (12th floor) every morning which served such a variety we never tired of eating breakfast there. For dinner, we liked the Indigo (6th floor) or the Summer Palace (same menu as the Indigo). We tried O'Shenihan's twice whose appetizer wings were excellent & who excelled in shephard's pie. Both O'Shenihan's & the oriental restaurant had very limited menus. The spa on board ran many specials; I had a manicure & pedicure while we were at sea & which lasted the entire 11 day cruise plus!

Most of the ports of call you could disembark easily; there were 2 ports where tenders were used. Belize City & Panama used tenders to bring you to land. When checking in on the 1st day, NCL takes your photo; then gives you a NCL card which you use for all transactions including leaving & returning to the ship. That's how you're accounted for when the ship leaves for the next port. Your photo isn't on the card but is on the manned computer as you leave & enter the ship. My spouse enjoyed the cruise so much he wants to book another one! It certainly took us long enough for the 1st one!!!
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