1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
My family and I wanted to take a end of the summer vacation together. We cruised August 16-19th. We honestly decided to cruise Norwegian because of the open bar, because we normally cruise Royal Caribbean but drink packages for 20 is a tad ... Read More
My family and I wanted to take a end of the summer vacation together. We cruised August 16-19th. We honestly decided to cruise Norwegian because of the open bar, because we normally cruise Royal Caribbean but drink packages for 20 is a tad expensive. Norwegian open bar was really not worth it the staff was so rude and made the guest feel unwelcome like we were annoying them. The food on the ship was disappointing. A lot of the food was like hospital food with little flavor. The service from the staff was horrible. The majority of the staff including the bartenders and waiters was that they appeared to be annoyed by the guests and seem to have a careless attitude about providing good service. I have travelled on other cruise lines so I understand what quality customer service is and it was not there on this trip. When I would approach a staff member with a simple question no one ever seem to have an answer and the majority of the staff was not able to communicate basic english to answer questions like “where is the bathroom”? Or “what time are we scheduled to be at our next destination?” We upgraded one of our rooms to a balcony and it wasn’t worth it. The room was so tight that you literally had to jump over one bed to get in the room. I really wish I had a picture of that mess. Also, before cruising I was told I had to put a $300 hold per room. I did not have to do that my room key was disabled from making purchases which was fine I did not want to make any purchases. So if your wondering I set my payment to cash on checkin and never went to the service desk to change it. No $300 hold and cards disabled. For smokers they don’t sell Newport’s so don’t run out. Based on this experience this will most likely be our last cruise with Norwegian. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
I got off the Norwegian Sun today after a 4 day cruise to the Bahamas with my mom. Are you ready for this tale? After boarding on the first day, nothing was open and the rooms weren't ready. When we went to the room, we were given ... Read More
I got off the Norwegian Sun today after a 4 day cruise to the Bahamas with my mom. Are you ready for this tale? After boarding on the first day, nothing was open and the rooms weren't ready. When we went to the room, we were given a single bed even though we booked a double beds. We feared my mother's luggage was lost, since it was several hours without it at the room. I spoke with another guest who said that his luggage was put on the wrong ship. We tried to call our room attendant "Brianna", but the number was a busy signal. We called Guest Services, but the number was also busy. The luggage finally arrived around 9 PM while we were eating what tasted like frozen food or bad airplane food in the main dining hall. We then met our real room attendant who explained that the number didn't work because "she went home today on vacation." Not sure why they couldn't replace the card with the correct attendant's name and number? Shortly after eating/drinking on the ship, we would get horrible cramps. We did not know the cause until after looking up the symptoms on the internet today (the cruise charged $35 per device each day for WiFi) that we had contracted THE NOROVIRUS! Why did we contract the Norovirus? "Washy Washy" was not everywhere on the ship and we watched the workers clean the tables without gloves and without disinfectant. The ship was dirty and we saw crumbs on the floor and on the tables everywhere. The tables were cleaned with wet rags and food everywhere was not bussed. So much so, that seagulls would have feasts on the deck outside on the questionable food no one seemed to enjoy. Comfortable sleep did not happen because we didn't have working AC the entire trip. We called maintenance the first night to fix the AC, but there still was no cold air circulating in our room. We would feel cold air while passing other guests' rooms and in other parts of the ship. The repair man explained that the coldest our room was allowed to get is 73 degrees and the ship utilizes "chilled recycled ocean water." However, 73 degrees would have been tolerable unlike the 80 degree room that we had. We were sweating laying on top of the covers every night tossing and turning. Everytime we reached out to Guest Services, a person who could not understand English very well would get confused and tell us everything was fine. To make matters worse, our toliet would not flush and the sink constantly made a loud gurgling sound. The toliet was fixed a total of 4 times and the AC was "fixed" about the same amount if not more. The bathroom smelled of rank sewage, so we had to constantly spray hair spray in there to not gag every time we had to enter. The shower was also repaired twice, since only scalding hot water came out. We spoke with 4 other guests that claimed their room FLOODED! The toliet and shower eventually worked on the last day of the trip, but the AC never worked. We are leaving the trip completely exausted (and sick). The entertainment on the ship was beyond cheesy and usually involved the ship begging for more money. The ship's shops were desperate money grabs, much like the $5.50 bottle of Aquafina placed in our room to "tempt" us. The food was subpar and every meal oredered was taking a chance. During one dinner, I ordered French Onion soup because I thought how can you mess that up? Much to my suprise, that was bad too. The soup tasted like only beef stock and had no flavors of onion, salt, or bouillon. The ship also kept trying to pass off certain foods as gourmet. For example, one appetizer on the menu was "cream cheese and crab stuffed wonton with a sweet chilli sauce". Isn't that called, "crab rangoon"? We noticed a lot of interesting menu items that we believed to be recycled leftovers from other meals like adding bacon to sauerkraut. We picked snorkeling/beach day for our excursion in Freeport, Bahamas which came be to around $150. When we arrived to get on the bus for the excursion, we were informed that the snorkeling was canceled due to weather. The ship did not inform us earlier of this and instead loaded up a tour bus full of guests whom we suspect were charged the full amount for a 15 minute shuttle to the beach. Instead, we went back to the ship and asked for a refund. We then caught a taxi which only came to $14 for both of us. The White Party/Glow Party was held from 10:30 PM-12:00 AM the night before a port of call was 7 AM. The party took place by the pool deck and it was raining. The workers were squeegeeing the deck and the DJ was trying to get the crowd to come out from hiding from the rain. After the rain stopped, the crowd came out to dance and consisted mainly of small children. The DJ played EDM music for a bit, then switched to explicit rap much to the horror of the parents in attendance. They had a twerk contest on the stage and parents were taking their children to leave. A woman with a see through dress and a thong on got in the splits and began dancing like a stripper on the stage for everyone to see, kids and adults alike. There were other people on stage dancing that kept it clean, but she had to be pulled off stage because she was showing her buttcrack/vagina. There looked to be children watching as young as 5-12 years old. The DJ was blasting Cardi B songs and asked the crowd of kids to sing along to the explicitly laced lyrics. I left after that, since I had no interest in twerking around little kids. Small things such as crew members not knowing guests' names, no towel animals, and no drinks being served by the beach chairs were also a disappointment. We cruised with NCL in 2015 and had a fantastic time, so we suspect there must have been a restructuring within management. The cruise reaked of budget cuts and corporate greed. We suspect that the workers were paid very little and we were told that they rarely get to go home to their families in their home countries. Sorry if this was too much to read, but I did not want to spare any of the details. I posted this on NCL's Facebook page, but it was taken down by the moderators (suprise). Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2018
We planned this cruise for about a year and was so excited to see Cuba before it became "Americanized." This particular cruise was the only one that fell within our timeline for our group. The embarkment and disembarkment at ... Read More
We planned this cruise for about a year and was so excited to see Cuba before it became "Americanized." This particular cruise was the only one that fell within our timeline for our group. The embarkment and disembarkment at Port Canaveral were fantastic. When we walked onto the ship, there was no one to greet us or direct us. We simply wondered the ship - checking it out. We joined the cruise director who was giving a tour of the ship. Our luggage arrived timely. Our room was small but clean. Good thing it had been cleaned before we arrived because our steward did not touch it again. The towels were left laying on the floor for days, and we eventually ran out. The food was left in our room. No tidying up at night time and no towel animals. The food on the ship was less than satisfactory. The few restaurants included in the reservation had only a few choices. It was the same food each day. The wait staff was so rude. They would literally take the plate out from us while eating. They cleaned our tables while we were still eating. The other restaurants on board were pricey. Alcohol was complimentary and a wide variety was available. The ship's customer service center lacks professionalism. They act like they are bothered if they have to answer a question. The bars and entertainment were good. The casino was just ok. The cruise director and staff were fun. Shows were professional. Entertainment was offered nightly, except for the overnight in Cuba. Half of the crew was given leave to go enjoy Cuba. That is great for them, but a lot of the ship was closed and service was slow because few staff members were left on board. Speaking of Cuba - don't go! It is just filthy. Bathroom facilities are non-existant. The "restaurants" are so dirty that we didn't eat or drink while ashore. We had to take our own toilet paper and drinking water from the ship. Make sure you attend the seminar on what to do and not to do while in Cuba. The locals were not friendly. There was no place to shop. It is stiffling hot and there is no breeze. The stinch from sewage in the streets is nasty. Some areas are great, but other areas are not. The women and children were begging for money and some were charging $5 to take pictures of them. We went on the cigar, rum and art excursion. It was interesting. We bought cigars, rum and coffee while on the tour because of price and quality. Our souvenirs were purchased from the ship giftshop because there was nothing to buy downtown. If you do decide to go, hold tightly onto your valuables while out and about in Cuba. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
This was our Honeymoon so we decided to make the trip easy by taking a cruise. Cuba was our destination of choice, so this cruise was perfect! This was the first cruise for both of us on Norwegian and definitely not our last! ... Read More
This was our Honeymoon so we decided to make the trip easy by taking a cruise. Cuba was our destination of choice, so this cruise was perfect! This was the first cruise for both of us on Norwegian and definitely not our last! Norwegian took care of our visa's for us, which made the entry into Cuba easy! We loved the ship because it was easy to move around and not too big. Excellent signage to get us from one place to another. The cabin was great for us. Everything we needed was there and it was always clean and everything was functional. The dining was phenomenal, food, service, and drinks! We really were pleased with the gym since we both like to work out. It had all the equipment that we both like to use. There were so many activities on the cruise we couldn't decide which one to do sometimes. I had been on another cruise line before and I will never go back! I would recommend Norwegian Cruise Line to EVERYONE! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
Great Ship, great cruise, amazing itinerary.... starting in Chile through the Panama Canal ending in Miami. A 16 day cruise was a pleasure and a dream. Our cruise was effected by the Noro Virus and the ship was taking extra efforts to ... Read More
Great Ship, great cruise, amazing itinerary.... starting in Chile through the Panama Canal ending in Miami. A 16 day cruise was a pleasure and a dream. Our cruise was effected by the Noro Virus and the ship was taking extra efforts to clean and prevent people from serving themselves. That means longer lines and longer wait times. My family washed our hands very often and avoided the buffet as there was less selection and longer lines. It was better to be served breakfast, lunch and dinner in the main dinning room. No one out of the 6 people we traveled with got the virus. Complainers should keep this in mind as the crew also got sick and service was delayed due to less crew. NCL gave us $35/each on our bill for the inconvenience and not sure how they came up with that number. Thanks for that. $50- $100 would have been better :). Our ages ranged from 45-55 years old so we were less than the average age. I won $20 in the Deal or No Deal game! That was also so much fun! Special thank you to Roberto De Pasquale, the cruise director, I love his energy and daily TV show. You really add to the ship! They are luck to have you! We will be back NCL, Thank you for all the great memories. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2016
I´m brazilian and it´s my second NCL Cruise, the other was NCL Getaway. The ship is old but tradicional, the crew members are great and the Cities I visited the best. What make me upset is an ilegal tax that all onboard have to pay, crew ... Read More
I´m brazilian and it´s my second NCL Cruise, the other was NCL Getaway. The ship is old but tradicional, the crew members are great and the Cities I visited the best. What make me upset is an ilegal tax that all onboard have to pay, crew members and passengers, a 25% tax plus the 18% tax for the service, but this 25% we only know when we make the first payment. Researching, they create this because NCL was finned for Brazilan law and give to all to pay what it´s deservers only to NCL because NCL don´t follow brazilian rules, that they should have at least 25% brazilians working there. And for people that doesn't speak English is really hard, even in the recreation for kids there´s no brazilian, I had to complain because my 7 and 10 years old boys weren't understanding much. Roberto the cruise director is the best and all the adult Recreation team were great: Sandra, Clarissa, José, Adriano, love you all. Imagine, a beer costs $7.95 but you have to pay $11.35: +1.43(18% grat, ok) but the $1.99 brazilian tax is ilegal!!!!!). Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2015
This was my 2nd cruise with NCL. First time beeing on the Epic. I was really impressed with the overall condition of the ship! After reading some reviews, knowing that this ship is one of the oldest in the fleet...The Sun was very clean, ... Read More
This was my 2nd cruise with NCL. First time beeing on the Epic. I was really impressed with the overall condition of the ship! After reading some reviews, knowing that this ship is one of the oldest in the fleet...The Sun was very clean, spotless and my oceanview stateroom was spacious enought. I was on deck 6A and if you are looking for a quiet aerea, this is it ! I really enjoyed beeing on that deck, since a few more steps up and I was already on deck 7. The 2 main dinning rooms were great, altought I had a preference for their Seven Seas dinning room. It is really nice, especially the entrance Hall! At both dinning rooms, food was pretty good. The only place I was dissapointed with food choices or quality was at the Garden Cafe...Compared with the Garden Cafe on the Epic, the one on the Sun was very limited... I also really enjoyed that the Sports Bar served food until very late at night! I also enjoyed a lot their Entertainment team ! Shows onboard were really good ! The Dancers as well as Tim Kamenski did a wonderful job ! Not to mention everybody else on board ! Also, since I was travelling just by myself, I really enjoyed the FOD meetings! Thanks to Jo Jo's and NCL for offering this on their ships ! Only dissapoitment was disembarkation...It took almost 2 hours to disembark ! We were lining up for really long...I Was able to got off the ship arounf 10 am... Also, I must admit that I had to call a few times their Customer Service Line for an issue with my booking 2 weeks before sailing...and I was really disappointed with the way they try to solved that issue...Finally, once on board, I found out that they had given me an extra onboard credit to compensate...So, nice touch...! Overall, I give a 9 out of 10 to the Sun ! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
Firstly, may I say that my wife and I really enjoyed our recent cruise on this vessel as the entertainment was excellent, the range of activities first class and the cabins were clean and comfortable. Also, the range and quality of the ... Read More
Firstly, may I say that my wife and I really enjoyed our recent cruise on this vessel as the entertainment was excellent, the range of activities first class and the cabins were clean and comfortable. Also, the range and quality of the food was good and the customer care of the staff was also excellent. In addition, the range of ports and sights on the itinerary was spot on. And, it was so nice to feel comfortable when casually dressed on board a cruise. How can you be dissatisfied then you might ask? Well it soon became apparent that the customer care policy was geared solely to viewing the customer as a cash cow. We were bombarded every day with things to buy and places to spend money and the prices were extortionate. There were raffle tickets, additional restaurants, expensive drinks, photographs, spa treatments, paid classes and a whole range of gifts, souvenirs and other shopping paraphernalia supported by promotions galore! Also, there were the ludicrously expensive tours, on sale needless to say and heavily publicised in many ways throughout this cruise. Moreover, all the staff had targets and so they were all looking for cash cow' to enable them to meet these targets and then there was the double whammy of eighteen per cent tax and gratuities to be added to most of their services. Without much effort you could run up a seriously expensive bill and that is after paying out for the cruise itself! It may be said that the above is true of all cruises and that is why my wife and I do not really wish to be a part of what is a captive audience held to ransom again! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2015
I flew into Anchorage 2 days early to sightsee. I then traveled to Seward via bus from Anchorage to embark on the Sun. I did back to back cruises for 14 nights. I loved Alaska and it was a once in my lifetime trip. I did not like the ... Read More
I flew into Anchorage 2 days early to sightsee. I then traveled to Seward via bus from Anchorage to embark on the Sun. I did back to back cruises for 14 nights. I loved Alaska and it was a once in my lifetime trip. I did not like the food. The first week I had port credits and the second week I had specialty dining. I did not like the specialty dining restaurants , the food just was not good. The meat and fish were always over cooked and flavorless. The dining room hostesses were great. Not giving me a hard time about dining solo. The ship was overrun with unsupervised kids day and night. Kids having meltdowns were a standard. I had a balcony for the first week and ocean view the second week. Alaska is beautiful and interesting and I enjoyed the glaciers. The first week was cold, wet and rainy. 50-60's first week. 67 the second week, some rain. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2015
Lets start off with the ship. This was one of the best kept and most clean that I have seen cruise ship in years. I think the Captain has a lot to do with this. Second is the crew. I felt as welcomed and had fun each and every day with ... Read More
Lets start off with the ship. This was one of the best kept and most clean that I have seen cruise ship in years. I think the Captain has a lot to do with this. Second is the crew. I felt as welcomed and had fun each and every day with crew members that genuinely seem to enjoy our presence. A big kudos to the Photography Staff and Marcus as an outstanding individual on that staff! Food is next! I can't say that the food was always perfect or the best, but the staff in the main dining rooms handled such situations with great ease! Here too I want to thank an individual on this staff. Africa, yes Africa, made dining a pleasure. We asked for him every time we went back for lunch or dinner. Other passengers had caught on to his excellence and was found to be full in his station on 2 occasions. Next is entertainment. The shows ,which we saw all of them, were a WOW factor for this cruise. Unlike smaller ships that have 4 headliners, this one had 6. All were talented in their own right. Not sure who Norwegian contracts with but they had some of the best dancers I have seen at sea. Next the Cruise Director. Ben reminded me of a Australian Rodney Dangerfield. He was funny and creative and was always friendly. I don't think he took himself too seriously much like Mr. Dangerfield. Now for the needs improvement. The Atrium was a nice addition to the Sun with the panorama elevators. What happened unfortunately was the Casino and the smoking areas now easily blend into the larger area. I don't like smoke and I don't think it should never be allowed inside the ship. If the 20% of smokers make a big difference in Casino revenues, try marketing to the 80% with a smoke free zone. 80% of people have a larger clout and presence. Wake up NCL and go smokeless! When we arrived in Skagway the plan for getting off the ship went to hell in a hand basket. Not sure why or how, or who to blame, it needs to be fixed Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2015
Sailing on the Norwegian Sun was a truly extraordinary experience! There's really no comparison to other cruise lines like Carnival or Royal Caribbean. Norwegian is insanely superior: it's the difference between ... Read More
Sailing on the Norwegian Sun was a truly extraordinary experience! There's really no comparison to other cruise lines like Carnival or Royal Caribbean. Norwegian is insanely superior: it's the difference between kinda-having-fun-on-a-boat and being treated like royalty 24/7. The boat itself is small and intimate (which means a larger staff-to-guest-ratio), it's beautiful, there's great entertainment (check out the wonderful "Sun Singers Unplugged" show; incredible singing in an intimate atmosphere), and the food is plentiful and tasty (the specialty restaurants are fantastic; the buffet's a bit hit-or-miss, but what buffet isn't?). Above all, the service is EXCEPTIONAL. Example: our shower head was less than satisfactory (picture yourself being stabbed with water), so we told our steward. Before we knew it, we had a brand new shower head installed (which provided one of the best showers we've ever had; we went from stab to fab in less than two hours!). The room staff is sneakily brilliant at knowing when you're away from the stateroom so they can clean up, fill your ice bucket, and create amusing towel sculptures. And the bar service is probably the best we've received ANYWHERE. Not only did our bartenders remember our names and greet us with friendly smiles, they created ridiculously tasty libations. And they didn't skimp or take short cuts. They muddled fresh fruits (and even herbs like basil and rosemary) to create sumptuous craft cocktails (just stop what you're doing, board the ship, and taste the Sparkling Garden. Seriously. It's kinda life-changing). Consider yourself very lucky to have a drink made by Brent, Dmitrije, Jonas, Emmanuel, Jeffery, Abner or Kyle. We took the seven-day Western Caribbean cruise, and it's been a little difficult readjusting to reality after being treated with such overwhelming kindness and inspired efficiency for seven days. All in all, it's the best cruise we've ever been on, and we can't wait to board the Sun again:) (And PS, be sure to pack white clothing for their amazing white party on the pool deck!) Read Less
Sail Date: January 2015
This seven day cruise on the NCL Sun featured two sea days and four ports of call: Roatan Bay, Cozumel, Costa Maya, and Belize City. Please note that if you cannot do steps, you cannot disembark the ship at Belize City, even if you are ... Read More
This seven day cruise on the NCL Sun featured two sea days and four ports of call: Roatan Bay, Cozumel, Costa Maya, and Belize City. Please note that if you cannot do steps, you cannot disembark the ship at Belize City, even if you are willing to brave the tender process. The ship does not dock at Belize City and the only access to the tenders is by way of a full flight of steps. It's just as well, as most people returning said I didn't miss much anyway. With three other ports, I was bound to sit one out anyway. The ship is one of the smaller ones in the NCL fleet and there were lots of special offers and discounts for this sailing, making it very affordable. But be aware that unlike the larger, newer ships, the Sun does not feature the latest technology. The NCL Concierge iPhone app does not work on the Sun. Even the entertainment (which often features scaled down Broadway musicals on larger ships), is less elaborate here. Two of the shows were adequate (A Bacharach-themed revue and a rock revue) and the third was a real hodge-podge with no real theme to it. Naturally, NCL encourages you to try it's premium dining spots, but the 'complimentary' dining rooms are good enough. (I have the feeling they are holding back from being amazing so that you'll try the premium ones instead.) The Garden Cafe buffet was fine - if a bit crowded at peak times. As you've doubtless read elsewhere, the standard cabin bathrooms are tiny and the shower stalls even tinier - no room for swinging the proverbial cat - sort of a curtained tube with a shower head at the top. Overall, service was terrific, with the Philippine staff taking the lead - tireless and hard working - always with a smile. I found some of the European staff were a bit less smiley - borderline indifferent - but perhaps smiling doesn't come naturally in Romania. Activities on board were the usual fare - embarrass your partner games, or gambling. I enjoyed watching Deal or No Deal, something I hadn't seen before on a ship. They offer Friends of Bill W., singles, and LGBT meetings - but curiously only the singles meets were hosted. Although I prefer a small, more manageable ship - when the NCL Epic docked alongside us in Cozumel, I did wonder how the other half lives. Their floating condo complex dwarfed the Sun. Although the ship is in terrific shape - I hope that some of the technological bells and whistles can be incorporated next time she is in dry dock. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
I unexpectedly had some free time after a job I had been working fell through and I had left a deposit on a future cruise one year ago. I called NCL's Casino's at Sea and received a great rate with no single cruiser supplement ( ... Read More
I unexpectedly had some free time after a job I had been working fell through and I had left a deposit on a future cruise one year ago. I called NCL's Casino's at Sea and received a great rate with no single cruiser supplement ( This was actually cheaper than "Free" cruises I had received from Ceaser's Palace) 5 days before the cruise departed. I stayed the Springhill Suites at the Tampa Airport the night before I departed. For a reasonable one night rate I was able to park my car there for the 7 days of the cruise and a third party shuttle (veteran's transport) took me to the port on departure morning. They also picked me up a week later so I could return to my car. The shuttle was a little later picking us up from the ship than what they had originally said. Embarkation was fairly smooth no issues for me. Once on board I found my cabin ( an inside sideways) was ready and had been decorated with "Happy Birthday" Decorations and a Birthday cake was sitting on the bedside table. When my friends had called to order the decorations they were told that I would receive a coupon to have the cake delivered whenever I wanted to celebrate. Having the cake there worked out OK, it was just not what I expected. The cake was very good. The dining was fairly good. The service 2 of the 3 times I ate in the Dining rooms was good, on the last night of the cruise it seemed everyone came to the Four Seasons dining room at the same time and it took about an hour and a half to have the meal served. The Menu was OK nothing really stood out. I also tried Le Bistro where I had excellent rack of lamb, and Cagney's steakhouse which was good but not spectacular. Lunch buffets were good and breakfast was generally good. The shipboard activities were very good. The cruise staff all had great personalities and were allowed let them show through. Adrian had his "Nerd" trivia which usually went longer than it was scheduled, but had everyone laughing the whole time, Gabi, Sharma, and Lester also brought their personalities to the events they hosted and made everything different than the usual run of the mill cruise ship activities. They also had a solo cruisers meet up each day and tried to help everyone get involved with some activities. The Shows were standard NCL shows, however all the performers were friendly and helpful whenever you saw them around the ship. The music as OK there was a reggae band, a 2 piece light band, a four piece "elevator music band" and the show band. The show band really rocked, and I liked the Reggae band We had a cruise critic meet and greet the 2nd day of the cruise. NCL set up the room had snacks and nametags made up for us, and most of the senior staff came by and answered any questions we had for them. Afterwards we did a cabin crawl. It was my first and it was good to see all the different rooms and suites. I also met several people there that I continued to see and sing Karaoke with for the rest of the trip. I did shore excursions in 3 of the ports. I was happy with all of them I had a good time. I did Goingolimba park and tatayana Beach in Roatan, Cave Tubing in Belize, and open bar at Playa Mia. These apply to personal taste so they are difficult to review for a general audience. I had a great time at the Casino I didn't spend a lot of time there but I won quite a bit of money. I received several dinners at specialty restaurants and bottles of wine from them for reaching "Hot" status. I also received a bottle of wine and a travel tote for my birthday. At the end of the cruise they gave me an additional $100 onboard credit. My one major disappoint was being charged $2.50 for a bag of peanuts that appeared on my desk next to a plate of chocolates that the casino had sent me. apparently they came from the mini-bar which I never opened. Since they were by all the freebies I had received I thought they were just another free thing I had been given. So when I took my casino winnings to pay off my shipboard spending I was very upset to see a bill for that. I had a great cruise, but that $2.50 bogus charge is my big complaint. Overall I had a great cruise and I think the crew of the Sun did a great job helping me celebrate my birthday.   Read Less
Sail Date: November 2014
I would say that overall we had a good cruise, but as a ship, the Sun has some glaring problems. I've been on small ships before, and the size did not bother me. What bothered me was the layout of some of the areas. when the tables ... Read More
I would say that overall we had a good cruise, but as a ship, the Sun has some glaring problems. I've been on small ships before, and the size did not bother me. What bothered me was the layout of some of the areas. when the tables were set up outside the shops, barely one lane of traffic could get through the narrow space. And good luck getting through at all if there's a raffle going on. The flow in the Garden cafe is likewise very poor, with numerous traffic jams...and the ship wasn't even at full capacity. The atrium is very small. When photographers are set up, again the spaces are very tight and nearly impossible to navigate. You could get stuck in the aft of the ship on certain floors...there was just nowhere to go through and you had to go back up or down stairs or on an elevator. The elevators were VERY slow and often we waited for several minutes. If we were going up or down 5 floors of less, we always took the stairs. Perhaps the worst thing was the smoke from the casino, which drifted into the floors above and below. The champagne bar is usually a great space to hang out in, but we couldn't stay long because of the smoke. Plus if you wanted to access the stores, you had to walk through the casino unless you wanted to take stairs to circumvent it. Total pain. There were plumbing problems and carpeting had to be replaced while the ship was in motion. You couldn't hear the cruise director's or captain's announcements from your room, room tv (even though they said you could and we tried on the correct channel), and some public areas like the garden cafe....which meant we hardly ever heard the announcements! Very frustrating. The BEST thing about this ship was the aft dining off the Garden Cafe, which many bigger ships have removed entirely. Apart from the ship problems, service was generally good. Only once or twice did we receive outstanding service. On the first night in the Seven Seas dining room, we were told we needed to dress up from then on. It was entirely unnecessary and snooty- we were in nice jeans, which according to the dress code are ok, and sweatshirts since we were cold. The production cast was very talented. Some of the professional entertainment was sadly lacking. I will sail NCL again, but I really wouldn't want to sail on the Sun again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2012
Well - to make it easy: you can pay more - and you get more... but I am always asking myself is there a need to have more and spend the money for another cruise for some comfort of one cruise only. With NCL I can afford balconies while ... Read More
Well - to make it easy: you can pay more - and you get more... but I am always asking myself is there a need to have more and spend the money for another cruise for some comfort of one cruise only. With NCL I can afford balconies while with the same budget I would only get lower categories. But you must accept some lower standards in the free food. Our cruise started in Copenhagen. A great embarkation port. Close to airport. Only problems when you are someone extremely "cheap" and loves to carry your bags 20 minutes to the next public transport an on weekends. But pre-/post-cruise could be a little more expensive than somewhere else as Copenhagen is not the cheapest city but beautiful and worth to see. Drop-off bags at curbside: no problem, check-in: no problem either. As we really have a great TA with great revenue with NCL and great contacts we got an upgrade from Balcony to Mini-Suite. The Mini-Suite was just (like the whole ship) from a time where maritime feeling decides. Great furnitures - enough space. Only problem was door to balcony and the drawers need to fixed for unintentional movements. Walkable closet and a seperate beauty table incl. hair dryer in the bathroom: wonderful! Only disadvantage: bath tub instead of shower - especially if you had sea movements and no handle to get in or out. Our cabin steward did a very good job and every special request we had was done asap. The ship itself had space and maritime feeling. Not like NORWEGIAN EPIC which reminds more to a floating casino mall... You had great lounges like Observation Lounge to look forward - not like NORWEGIAN STAR/DAWN only looking back! You had atriums which gives you the feeling how tall the ship is with glass elevators. Open deck: not so crowded that you have the feeling to be squeezed with others. Well... food... We did not die of hunger... but somehow variation and quality become worse and worse. Even when you pay extra like with the Musical bruch: Salmon as starter, salmon as entree... and the next days salmon salmon salmon... Compared to our last experience on NORWEGIAN JADE it was poorer: like Cesar's Salad: no options like anchovies or tabasco. It was plain and you can top chicken, shrimps or croutons. As they sold 2 for 1 you had also very "cheap" fellow-cruisers: no habit how to queue up and ignoring existing queues, pushing you away because they arrive and need space, early arrival before buffet was finished and starting to store desserts before coffee was served because they were afraid that when they finished their entree the desserts might be gone. I am willing to pay 20 or 25 USD to have a nicer atmosphere but such guests who obviously never participated to any better buffets before. Therefore PLEASE NO MORE 2 for 1-OFFERS!!! They still had surf and turf, but with two shrimps instead of a lobster tail. But they still have lobster. Lunch in the MDR: same every day! No general variation. The offer day by day: regional specialities for lunch and dinner: but if you get a waiter who does not know and they forgot to display you do not get it. But even the regional specialities: nothing upscale: things like Meat Loaf, Saussage, Wiener Schnitzel. Soups: as I am a soup lover and so I was quite disappointed that flavour was a word the chef in charge for soups did not know. They had days simple things like chicken broth were excellent and other days it tasted like water. Before you book Royal Caribbean or Carnival: they are not better either - but NCL lower their standards later than Royal Caribbean. We had two occassions to eat two dinners in Le Bistro and Moderno. Le Bistro unchanged so far (Latitudes Platin) and Moderno: not as good as on NORWEGIAN EPIC due to capacity reasons: buffet is smaller on NORWEGIAN SUN so something which we knew from NORWEGIAN EPIC was missing. Nevertheless: an experience you should not miss. A new experience was Las Ramblas Tapas-Restaurant... well I could not say that this reminded me very much to classical Spanish Tapas-Bars but it was a nice place to sit and listen music or to have a snack. It was the second time that we were drawn for the Hosted Dinner Table. No idea why they put us on a pure German speaking table. I had to learn that the HR Manager and the Staff Captain are not the same person and it was great to learn many many new things during this dinner. I can only recommend to go to the front desk and let them know that you are interested to join this event. It's complimentary and you get free drinks you normally have to pay and very nice company like us. It was our first time on NCL to join the Chef's Table. But honestly COMPARED to Princess and Carnival the 75.00 USD was a little poor since you get cooking books and food preparation in the galley! Furthermore the "best" was a veal chop while you get Lobster Thermidor on Princess! It was also a little sad: it was hold the night when we set sail in Torshavn and so we missed the passage between the islands as our separate dinner room was kept dark. We need to say it was still a great food and service experience we would not like to miss and therefore a reason to be first onboard on NORWEGIAN SPIRIT in January 2013 to book it. The coffee was an up and down and my fellow had his French Press and his own coffee with him. What was very good: Breakfast variation: you can choose in the MDR if you like la carte or buffet. And if you did not find anything in the menu you can just top by food from the buffet and vice versa. A "secret": Breakfast at Moderno: nearly the same standard like with the VIP breakfast in Il Adagio but no warm menu. Although the food could be better we accept that we had to "suffer" because of the great crew. We really did not expected anyone might be onboard whom we know but just 10 minutes after embarkation we heared already "Welcome back onobard - nice to have you back with us again!". There were so many good "friends" with the crew that they even could read our mind: like I did not get the same teabag I am used to have: someone who served us many times before came and asked what was wrong. I normally say: when you have a quota of 90 good / 10 bad - I can live with it. But with NCL you normally have 98 /2 but on this cruise it as 99.5 / 0.5!!! Maybe because of the ship's management: Richard Jarnicki whom we know from previous cruise and his entire team did really everything to accomodate us. The word "No" we have never heared. We can only say: we had no reasons to go home and tell people not to go NCL. We finally made it to "Shout" after we missed so many times on NORWEGIAN JADE. A great show - most of the songs I downloaded later as iTunes. "Rock it" we did not like, so we left after few minutes as it was too hard and too loud for us (Sorry: too young to be "EasyRider"-Generation"). Claire Maidin was nice but when she had an additional Matinee show we left also early as she started to repeat songs from her 1st show which we did not like. Rope artists are not my world but we stayed to see the crew farewell... Anyhow we were so busy that we had no more time see anything. Jaime was a great Cruise Director and really one who was available for their guests. The only thing I need to claim: if guests are using signal horns to disturb the performance it's no fun - it's a reason to send security. We went on cruises and we experienced also concierges whose body language let you know "Do not bother me when you are not a suite-guest and only Latitudes Platinum". But not David Contreras: he showed up after few days, asking how we were as he was wondering that we never showed up so far and told us one more time that he was there to assist us and we should not be shy and come. A great concierge. I think they could treat their Latitudes Platinum guests better: You get a letter what you kind of amneties you get. Like "fruit basket". Never delivered but a box of chocolate (Godiva but the cheapest selection!!!): Background: guests can walk to the Garden Cafe and grab their fruits. That was why they sent chocolate. Nightly chocolate was never available: reason run out - could not find any supermarket in Copenhagen to buy new one... 10 addtional minutes for internet and only once. Cheese and Wine for Gold and Platinum: service went not fast enough: so guests took away tray with cheese from waiter and deliver to their friends and family while eating from the tray. What was great: when you arrived back from your tours someone was always there to welcome you with warm and cold beverages or cakes and a hot/cold towel. Something we even did not get with Holland America with 100 F in Asia! We choosed the cruise because of the itinerary: Copenhagen, Denmark: as we knew Copenhagen well we arrived very late and spend Saturday in Karen Blixen Museum (Out of Africa) and Kronborg (Hamlet's to be or not to be). We missed an insigth of Louisiana as our US-friends had to see the airport because their bags were missed. But we were on vacation - so no stress. The dinner we met Danish friends. The day of embarkation we spend a little time in Malm' in Sweden before returning to Copenhagen to get on the ship. Bergen, Norway: 90% of the days of the year it is raining. So what? It was raining. We send our friends to Norway in a Nutshell BUT the tour offered by Fjordtours on boat (Naer'yfjord), train (Flaam-Railways) and bus (Stalheim) and sitting with the ship's tour 27 miles in a tunnel to miss the UNESCO World Heritage. We stayed the day in Bergen and went on Mt. Fl'yen and did some shopping. In the evening we left with our friends on Hurtigruten (Norwegian Coastal Line) Bergen to Aalesund. Aalesund, Norway: Hurtigruten was testing the acceptance of H'jrundfjord instead of Geirangerfjord for the next year. So we were lucky to go into the fjord what we missed with NCL: Aalesund itself: season was over and they did not go to Geirangerfjord - how sad! We returned by taxis who took us to Geirangerfjord in Hellesylt and Mt. Aksa back to our ship. Lerwick, Shetland Island, Scottland: we rented a car and drove ourselves to Jarshof to buy some gloves and hats. A calm day. Torshavn, Faroe Islands: the port with the lowest expectations! So I felt the right to cancel just in case the weather might be too bad. But the tour went that day. The tour operator arranged that we had a one-way and must not return with our boat the whole way back and so could see more and arranged that public bus would wait for us. We have not seen one bird on the bird cliff tour. But just the voyage on the public bus from Torshavn to Vestmanna was worth to see. It was calm because my 20 fellow-cruisers who followed me (it was a open public tour everyone could join and I did not want them to enroll etc...) were so surprised of the scenery that nobody said a word on the tour. Later once they saw the boat for the ship's tour and our boat it was the moment they liked to kill me. But our small Viking boat could enter grottos etc.. Same with the boat tour: nobody spokes... what should you say, when you have Kau'ai (Hawai'ian Island), Norwegian Fjords and Halong-Bay (Vietnam) at one single place. It was the biggest surprise for me and I definately want to come back and see it again but with birds. Reykjavik, Iceland: unfortunately I got the same morning a message that a very good friend passed away. So my attention to The Golden Circle tour was very limited. We booked a public tour. It was cheaper and was fine. Geysir, Guldenvoss, Thingstatte... all the essentials. We stayed the night in Reykjavik because we thought that Iceland was worth to see more. So the next day we did Perlan (Saga Museum), a helicopter ride and Blue Lagoon. While the day before tons of buses arrived we had only about 30 cars in front of the Blue Lagoon. Greenock, Scotland: So we had the luck to miss the 2 days at sea with 15 ft high waves. When we arrived the day earlier in Glasgow we informed the port agent and I need some time to arrange some flowers for the funeral. So the afternoon we went to Edinburgh to see the Royal Yacht Britannia and meet friends for dinner with typical Scottish food. The next day we followed our friends' recommendation to see the Loch Lomond area and had more scones for our US-friends. It was nice - but after Torshavn it was somehow a little weak... Everything was done by a rented car. Dublin, Ireland: Again we booked a private taxi tour for Glendalough and Powerscourt. Well Glendalough was not my world as I hate bunch of old stones (but same with Stonehenge, temples on Malta or Ostia Antica... but I liked Angkor Wat, Tulum, Leptis Magna or Ephesus...) The Powerscourt were worth the money and time. But best was the lunch our driver took us with for. Never had better corned-beef before and fun!!! One picture says more than thousands words: Here in the postings of the boards you find pictures of our voyage incl. information of the ports and events on board: http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1713888 In summery: there were few little weak points but I would do this tour again and I would recommend all my best friends to go on this cruise again. You cannot get more for the price we paid! You can pay more and get more! But I prefer to go another cruise for this budget. I hope that someone from NCL read this too and take it as inspiration to become better with the food. I do not mind to pay a little more if I get a little higher standard with the food. But do not touch your crew: wonderful: can I adopt them for my home? Read Less
Sail Date: November 2010
This cabin was more of a long hall. The bed almost touched the opposite wall - we pulled the comforter up in order to pass along the bed. But worst of all, the music from the Observation Deck Lounge reverberated into the night ... the bass ... Read More
This cabin was more of a long hall. The bed almost touched the opposite wall - we pulled the comforter up in order to pass along the bed. But worst of all, the music from the Observation Deck Lounge reverberated into the night ... the bass was relentless. I admit we are not night owls ... but for the price of the cabin I didn't expect to have to contend with a boom box into the early hours. If you are not a smoker, or smoking can disturb you .... do not book a Norwegian Cruise. Smoking is allowed in all cabins, and on the open decks. We had to retreat into our cabin from our balcony on more than one occasion due to the smoking from neighboring balconies. This is the policy on all Norwegian ships and the reason I will never book another. The staff was accommodating and pleasant. I did enjoy the freestyle cruising to eat whenever we pleased. The speciality restaurants were lovely and service excellent. I have had the pleasure of sailing on a number of cruise lines and ships, and the Norwegian Sun is not a ship I would ever revisit. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2010
This was our second cruise this year on Sun and eighth cruise overall for DDP and me. Previously we have cruised on Celebrity to Alaska, NCL Sun to the Western Caribbean and South American, Atlantis (Gay Charter aboard X) to the Eastern ... Read More
This was our second cruise this year on Sun and eighth cruise overall for DDP and me. Previously we have cruised on Celebrity to Alaska, NCL Sun to the Western Caribbean and South American, Atlantis (Gay Charter aboard X) to the Eastern Caribbean, Eastern Med on NCL Jade, Costa Eastern Caribbean, and Thanksgiving 2008 to the Mexican Riviera on NCL Star. All in all, we had a pretty good experience. We were introducing some friends to cruising and they enjoyed it. Our only real complaints all had to do with delays in embarkation and debarkations. This was Sun's first departure from Cape Canaveral and there were numerous problems both for our departure on October 16th and our return on October 23rd....and chaos reigned during our immigration clearance in Key West. We decided this was the Tardy for the Party Cruise! Precruise We departed RDU aboard Southwest on Friday around 5pm and after an uneventful flight arrived in Orlando. I checked us in exactly 24 hours ahead and we had boarding passes B24 & 25 so not exactly great but we both ended up with aisle seats so no real complaints. For the return, I did the earlybird check in for $10 each and we got A20 & 21 so if you want to be sure you get a good seat, it is probably worth the money. We arrived in Orlando about 10 minutes early and so did one of our friends flying in from Chicago via Airtran. We had rented a car from Avis to get the three of us to Port Canaveral using a coupon from RentalMamma.com, the cost was $44 including all taxes and fees. While DDP collected the luggage, I headed to the Avis counter. On the way there I noticed that my confirmation printout had the "preferred" logo on it and since there was a loooong line in the terminal, I headed on out to the garage to the preferred counter. When I got to the agent she pointed out that I wasn't a preferred customer, the logo on my confirmation was simply letting me know that this location had a preferred desk. I nicely asked if she couldn't go ahead and check me in; she said no that I had to go back inside....so back I went. Of course by now the line was even longer - turns out they had a server issue and had to prepare each person's contract by hand! It wouldn't have bothered me so much but there were four agents working their butts off in the terminal while two of the three at the preferred counter in the garage were doing nothing when I was there the first time nor again 45 minutes later when we went back to the garage to get our car.....oh, well, no biggie/ Not gonna let it ruin our vacation, we were off to Port Canaveral. The drive was quick and easy - would have been quicker and easier if I had of remembered to bring quarters for the toll, but 45 minutes later we were at the Country Inn and Suites and checked in. I had booked about a month pre-cruise on Priceline - $70 plus tax and fee - total of $85. Room was fine, front desk staff pleasant. We were given a parking pass that we didn't need so we could have parked there for the whole cruise even though according to what I read on the great "I worked at Port Canaveral" post, you aren't supposed to be able to when you book through Priceline. Our only complaint with the hotel was the breakfast. It was a madhouse, our first of several that day. Too many people in too small an area and with the exception of the cereal, none of the food including the coffee was very tasty. Wasn't a big deal at the time as we thought we would be having lunch in Sun's MDR by noon or shortly after....but as noted in the headline to this review.....our first lunch like so much else be tardy. Embarkation For reasons that I still can't figure out rather than being at the terminal at 11:30 am as planned, WE were a little tardy getting started and didn't get to the Avis office until about 11:30. We waited maybe 10 minutes for their complementary shuttle, and were off to the ship. After dropping other passengers off at Carnival's Dream and Disney's Magic, there were just the four of us heading around the parking lot to Sun. We quickly hit what looked like a 5 o'clock traffic jam - taxis, cars and shuttles all backed up. The Avis driver mentioned that Sun hadn't started letting passengers off the ship until sometime after 9 am even though it had been in port when she came into work at 6:30. We finally made it to the baggage drop zone, dropped them and then walked to get in the long line waiting to enter the building. We got in line at about noon. We had four other friends who were also joining us on the trip and they had all stayed at the Residence Inn and had arrived at the terminal around 11:15. They texted us that they were in the cattle corral waiting to check in. The line we were in moved relatively quickly and we were through security by 12:30 when we joined the cattle corral. We finally made it to the front of the line so we thought we were home free. It quickly became apparent that at least some of the tardiness was due to the inexperienced agents checking everyone in. Although there were several (six or seven?) manager types moving from one check in station to another, it seemed that almost all the agents were waiting for help. Our agent had to be reminded -by us no less - to go get our key card from those boxes "over there" and then she handed them to us before she took our pictures! After pointing that out to her, we finally had our key cards and headed on over to the "sit in those chairs until you are called" zone. From here we watched row by row go have their embarkation picture taken and head down the glass enclosed walkway to the gangway. After 20-30 minutes, our row was called and off we went. Finally at 1:45 we swiped our keycards and were aboard! So what was usually a 20-30 minute process had taken over an hour and a half. I was pleasantly surprised when Cruise Director Pedro remembered me from our April Round the Horn cruise and greeted me on the other side of the swiping station with a big smile and a "welcome back to Sun!" We quickly headed directly to the Seven Seas Dining Room and had our "we're on vacation" margarita and a very nice, relaxing, lunch before the dining room closed at 2:30. After lunch, we found our rooms and dropped our luggage and headed to the Muster Drill. If memory serves me correctly it was slightly delayed from the planned 3:30 pm. Muster was the usual cluster but it is much nicer now that you don't have to carry or wear your life jackets. We had a good laugh from one of the two slightly tipsy young ladies (with heavy southern accents and margarita glasses in hand) who while discussing what they needed to know should the abandon ship alarm sound, looked up at the lifeboat hanging overhead with its number and port of registration painted on the side, pointed at it and said "NASSAU's all you need to know" After muster, we headed to the Great Outdoors for a shady sailaway....little did we know then that It was going to be a sunset sailaway! Apparently in addition to whatever issues had made the debarkation tardy for the TA passengers, and the issues with the check in agents that made us late boarding, there were also issues with bunkering - loading fuel - so as we sat drinking in the Great Outdoors, we watched Dream, and then Magic leave and then finally shortly after 7 pm, we finally heard the horn and we were off....only 4 hours tardy! After three extra hours of margaritas, we headed to Pacific Heights for a delicious dinner and then after DDP's and my traditional stroll on the deck off to bed we went. Ship & Cabin Sun is scheduled for drydock in January. Hopefully in addition to whatever engine and hull maintenance they do, they will take the opportunity to redo some of the interiors. The ship is clean and well maintained but the interiors are dated and some of the softgoods - sofas in the rooms in particular are worn. Sun has what some say is an unusual layout in that to get to Seven Seas - one of the main dining room on Deck 5 at the stern - you have to first get to the stern via Deck 6 and then go down to Deck 5. . The up and over maneuver has never bothered us and we think having the theater on the stern with the dining room makes it convenient for most. The best part of Sun as far as I am concerned is The Great Outdoors. This large shady space on the stern is great for breakfast, lunch, pre-dinner cocktails, moonlight desserts or just lounging and reading a book. We booked Stateroom 8305 a "deluxe" inside forward on Deck 8 across the hall from our cruise virgins who had an outside with a picture window. The NCL deck plan made our room (and some similar ones nearby) look larger than the typical inside and some difference in the description made us worry that the beds couldn't be combined into one bed. I did lots of asking and looking around Cruise Critic but we weren't sure what we would find until we opened the door and saw one big bed - we both think it was actually bigger than the one we had in our BD in April but maybe that was an optical illusion. We were very pleased with the room layout. Because of its layout, there was lots of open floor space, very generous storage, a full size sofa and none of the tight spaces with corridor, bathroom and closet doors all fighting each other for the same square footage. The room was definitely worth the extra $30 per person it cost us. Entertainment Neither of us typically enjoy the theater shows aboard ship - this cruise was fairly typical in that regard. We went twice and later said we wished we hadn't. The first was for the comedian, Rod Long. He had a couple of funny lines but no more than three! The second was for "Encore". NCL's troupe's salute to several Broadway shows - Jersey Boys, Mamma Mia, Wicked and a few others. It was fine but if we were onboard again, I wouldn't bother going. We didn't go but I heard several other guests discussing BONK, a comedic, physical comedy game show in less than flattering terms. The opposite was true for Jeri Sager, a former Broadway singer. A number of folks said she was a great. I am sorry we missed her. We did become regulars at Progressive Trivia - regular losers! Even with our one perfect day when we got all 20 questions about the 1980s correct we still ended up 5th at the end of the week. At least it was a fun way to start our Pre-Dinner drinking each evening Ports/Sea Days DDP and I have determined that we enjoy being on our own while in port so we did not take any of the ships excursions. Additionally, given our ports, we had decided to take it easy and treat this as a vacation rather than feeling the need to have educational tours. Unless you consider learning about tequila educational! The cruise opened with a sea day and we enjoyed relaxing all day long... from breakfast at The Great Outdoors to pool time to Progressive Trivia to pre-dinner cocktails to our first dinner at the Seven Seas. We had enjoyed the Margarita and Muddling and Beer and Martini tastings on previous trips but unfortunately they only offered the Beer and Martini ones on this cruise....and at a time that didn't work for us. The one Beer tasting we tried to go to, didn't have enough participants so we did our own...more expensive but .... Day 2 found us in Cozumel. I had arranged for Gerry the taxi man to spend four hours showing six of us the east "wild" side of Cozumel. He met us as scheduled and we started with a quick city tour and then headed towards the east side. On the way we visited the Mayan ruins and the Tequila "Museum". The ruins to me were more reminiscent of the Greek ruins we saw at Olympia - foundations, pieces of columns, etc as opposed to the only other Mayan ruins I have seen which were Lamani in Belize. Those were more complete but eroded structures - stepped pyramids, statues, etc. The tequila was (IMHO) a very large glorified retail store - but we enjoyed it. For our $10 per person, we got an ok margarita, learned how tequila was made, tastes of a bunch of different (almond, orange, cherry, coffee) tequilas -including mescal - UGH and some really delicious aged ones. After we had our fill of tequila, we returned to the highway and soon found ourselves at a great little beachside restaurant, Mezcalitos where we enjoyed margaritas, shrimp, fish tacos - all were delicious. At the end of the meal, we were offered as many shots of different tequilas as we wanted all just for leaving a tip with the bartender. The restaurant had a small beach but our time was short so we after having our fill of shrimp and tequila we hit the road continuing around the island getting back to the pier just in time to buy a couple of bottles of duty-free tequila and get back on board. Our next port was Santo Tomas in Guatemala. We had considered several options here - I really wanted to go to the ruins at Quirigua and contacted several tour companies ahead of time. However, because Sun doesn't arrive until late morning, all of the tour companies expressed concern about being able to get there and back in time. While we like arranging our own port excursions, we have never and don't want to ever miss the ship...so we decided we would wait and book something at the pier since so many on Cruise Critic said this could be done and sometimes for a savings. We ended up doing the Dulce River cruise with Happy Fish as their line was the shortest and their hawker was the friendliest. I had corresponded with them via email and had reviews of their tours on Cruise Critic previously so I knew that they were an ok service, Do be prepared for chaos inside the terminal building- tons of folks trying to get you to book with them, music, dancing...all in all a fun place but a bit overwhelming. We waited with our other Happy Fish and after maybe a 30 minute wait we and sixteen others boarded our covered boat and headed off for the river. We enjoyed our day on the river seeing the beautiful country. I will say though that even though I had been warned by some friends who had visited Santo Tomas before, I was surprised by when we were suddenly surrounded by eight or ten kids in dugout canoes hawking trinkets while repeating over and over " un dollar, un dollar un dollar...."at one point, DDP said it was a little too Lord of the Flies for him. After a comfort break, we turned around and went back down river stopping at a small deck built over the river where a hot spring enters it. The more adventuresome in our boat climbed up the hill and visited a cave - I understand it was hot and steamy and presumably smelled of sulpha since the spring did down where we were. We had a beer here - they also had sodas - warm and some snacks and souvenirs to sell. After dipping our feet in the spring (they had dammed it up so you could see how warm it was, we reloaded the boat and continued downstream to Livingston. During our hour long stop here you could either take a quick tour of the city or sit and have a drink and lunch. We had lunch. DDP and I shared an appetizer of delicious grilled shrimp and a big bowl of Tapado - a coconut broth based soup with fish, crab, shrimp, and plantains. Both were enjoyable but we really didn't need but one or the other. We left Livingston and had a nice fast ride back to Santo Tomas. We got back to the pier in plenty of time to do our Christmas shopping in the now much more subdued terminal. There were lots of vendors with beautiful embroidered goods, woven items, carved pieces and of course coffee ready to bring home...so much better than Starbucks. After doing more than our fair share for the Guatemalan economy, we re-boarded Sun and looked forward to what I had been told by previous visitors to Santo Tomas was an incredible farewell from the locals. We were scheduled to depart at 5 and at about 4:30 the local dancers started a show on the pier and all the tour guides cars, taxis and buses lined up behind them. Unfortunately, one of the NCL excursions was tardy for this party and those poor dancers and their drummers ended up performing for a couple of hours. Finally, with blue lights flashing from their police escort, the final bus arrived and we said goodbye to Guatemala. Unfortunately, a number of the locals cars and buses had left by that point so while we got a farewell, I don't think we got the full horn blaring-lights flashing good-bye that Santo Tomas is known for....hopefully next time. Belize was our next port. DDP and I had been there on our first Sun cruise in 2005 and really enjoyed our trip to the Lamani Ruins, but decided to stay aboard and give ourselves an extra sea day by enjoying the ship while almost everyone else tendered ashore We had an enjoyable day sleeping late, a long lazy breakfast and lots (too much given how red we were the next day) of pool time on the almost empty pool deck. Our virgin friends did NCL's excursion to Altun Ha and enjoyed the ruins but said they were not impressed with the tour guide and found the tour somewhat disorganized. The next day was another relaxing day at sea ( I think I am ready for a transatlantic). Due to too much sun the day before we played cards in the shade by the pool and we looked forward to the White Pink (for breast cancer awareness even though none of the promotional material or announcements mentioned it) Hot Party. Because of the large gay group onboard (be patient, I will add my 2cents to that whole discussion at the end of the review) the party was more fun than any other I have attended. After way too many G&Ts and dancing, I stumbled back to bed around 1am which because the clocks were reset that night was really 2 which was much TOO TARDY given what we would encounter the next morning. With our turndown service on Thursday evening, we received a notice informing us that everyone would have to go through immigration after our arrival in Key West. All US citizens needed to visit the officers in the theater while non -US citizens would do the same in the Observation Lounge. I thought to myself, well that won't be too bad, better than doing it off the ship out on the pier in the sun. If I had only known. Each deck had an assigned time to report staring at SIX AM! Thank goodness we were on Deck 8 so didn't have to be there until 6:35. We set the alarm for 6:20, brushed our teeth, slid into yesterday's clothes and headed towards the stern. I thought lets walk on the promenade and see our former home from a new viewpoint. About halfway to the stern, we looked through the windows in Razzles and realized that the line from the theatre extended way back....so we headed inside and discovered the line went all the way to the atrium where it spiraled around.....TWICE. Imagine trying to find the end of a circular line which was constantly growing...and not moving. While standing at what we thought was the end of the line, we saw several disgruntled, rude folks arguing about where the end really was. Some friends who were a few folks ahead of us in line said they had watched the immigration folks boarding around 6:30 so apparently the mess may have started with someone being ...that's right, say it all together..Tardy. BUT, that doesn't explain the complete lack of direction given by NCL. There was no crew helping to keep order. At one point, Pedro the Cruise Director even came on the PA and welcomed everyone to Key West and told us where the gangway was located and other than thanking us for our patience, never mentioned anything unusual was going on. After waiting for 15 minutes or so and getting tired of hearing folks arguing - I am sure my White Hot Pink Party hangover had something to do with my attitude, we headed back to bed. Just before 8, we got up, had a quick breakfast in The Great Outdoors and then headed down to the theater where we had about a 5 minute wait for the officials to glance at our faces and passports and give us a stamp. All in all, NOT the way you want to spend the last real morning of your cruise. If they don't change the procedure and you have been to Key West before, I would advise you to sleep in, and head to your immigration station after the initial rush. After getting our immigration stamp and having NCL punch our key card, we walked off at Pier B in Key West. We were afraid that they weren't allowed to let anyone off the ship until everyone had cleared immigration but that wasn't the case. DDP and I used to live in Key West and still own a house there (if you are interested in a great vacation home in Paradise, get in touch!) and our big plan for the day was to stop by, meet our new tenants, and check on the newly installed roof. We had made arrangements to meet our friends at LaTeDa for a bloody mary at 10 and then we did a quick stroll to the Southernmost Point (its not really but they wanted their picture there anyway) and then wandered up Duval back towards the ship. Given our "all aboard" time of 12:30, there really wasn't time to do very much at all. We got back to the pier about 12 thinking we might beat the crowd-wishful thinking ...it took almost 45 minutes to get back on board. So again, if you don't have to get off the ship in Key West, I wouldn't. It wasn't' worth all the waiting in lines. I said before we left that I wished we were visiting the private island or staying at sea, and I stand by that wish. Sailway from Key West was beautiful and then we had our last lunch in Seven Seas, very relaxing, cool, and comfortable. The afternoon was spent relaxing and wishing the cruise wasn't over. Debarkation DDP and I had a 4 pm flight out of Orlando so we were in no rush to leave the ship. We had pulled 'gray" luggage tags which was scheduled for 9:30 or 9:45 departure. We went up to The Great Outdoors around 8 for breakfast only to discover that no one had yet left the ship. After breakfast, we went back and gathered our hand bags and returned to the stern to wait for our color to be called. Finally around 9:45, Pedro announced that express walkoffs could leave the ship. It was after to 11 before our gray was called. Other than this tardiness, the process was relatively simple and we were in the parking lot to meet the Avis shuttle by 11:40 or so. We hit the road for Orlando by noon and after a nice Vietmanese lunch got to the airport in plenty of time for our flight...which was of course...say it with me...Tardy!!! Food Overall, I remain pleased with NCL's food offerings. This trip we ate in the MDR for lunch twice, dinner 4 times, and in specialty restaurants the other three. There had been much discussion on the NCL board prior to leaving about changes to the MDR menu - more "always available" fewer changing items. This wasn't the case on this trip. The menu was the same as it had been during the first week of our April cruise. Service for us was better in Four Seasons than in Seven Seas but that could have just been the luck of the draw. We only had to wait for a table once - and that was for eight. We were the second big table waiting so we went to the other MDR and walked right in. Highlights of the MDR menu were; watermelon salad - so delicious, beef wellington, and the lobster/grouper entrEe. We had dinner in Pacific Heights one evening and again enjoyed the Chimichurri Steak, which we think is better than any of the steaks in Cagneys/East Meets West. However, the Thai Coconut soup recipe was different that previously and while tasty was too spicy for my taste - it was almost like they forgot to add the coconut milk. We enjoyed our dinner in Il Adiago, the OssoBucco is still one of the best dishes NCL makes, but I personally was very disappointed that they have removed the chocolate torte with dried apricots from the menu. It had been my favorite dessert on NCL since I had it on Jade for my birthday cake. Oh well, my waistline will be the better for it being gone. The rest of my group ate in East Meets West/Ginza for sushi one night. While I enjoy sushi, I don't think it is a meal, so I asked and the maitre d' was fine with me preparing a plate at the buffet and eating with my friends. The buffet offerings that night weren't my favorite but I didn't go hungry. With the exceptions of the two lunches in the MDR, our other meals were eaten in The Great Outdoors. We usually had omlets or other dishes from the stern grill - I love their corn beef hash with over easy eggs and the Muslix is also one of my favorites. Lunch was typically a big salad from the GREAT buffet salad bar and either a calzone from Pacific Heights or a burger from the grill. To my mind, there is not a nicer way to have a meal than sitting on the stern of a cruise ship. DDP and I have just about decided we won't take a cruise that doesn't have an outdoor eating area away from the pool. The other food highlight of the cruise were pre-dinner drinks and appetizers either from Las Ramblas, or wings from The Sports Bar. "THE" Group After booking our cruise, we discovered that there was a large (reportedly 500 strong) group of predominately gay folks on board. Through the gay board on Cruise Critic, I made contact with some of them and in fact considered for awhile becoming an official (rather than just presumed!) part of the group. However, finances and my frugality kept us from doing so. Because of the size of the group, it was hard to miss them and IMHO added much to the fun aspects of the cruise - I have never seen a "Sexy Legs" contest like that one! As gay men, my mini-group enjoyed having some "sistas" on board too. The group had a private party each night in the Observation Lounge from 8-10pm and since the cruise I have heard some rumblings on the boards about that, but the bigger issue that generated lots of post cruise (and apparently some on board from a conversation I overheard at the Reception Desk) were inappropriate activities taking place in public areas. I personally only saw one such activity which was one presumably intoxicated fellow tugging on his friend's suit - which dipped and revealed a little too much of his backside. However, I don' t think it was intentional and if it had of been a straight couple would have been just as accidental and just as inappropriate. There area reports of more inappropriate activites taking place and they may very well have. If so, then just like if they had of taken place by straight folks, it should have been handled by NCL Security and those who were offended should have (as EarlWarren stated on our roll call board) averted their eyes. I believe that the bigger issue for the complainers was not the actions of these few, but more the fact that there was a group of folks onboard different than themselves. I had a great conversation in the hottub one afternoon with a Canadian lady who said it had made her realize how it must feel to be the minority - she said when she got to the check in desk In Canaveral and looked around and saw so many men, she knew something was different. She said, she had enjoyed the cruise and it had given her a new outlook. Another lady I spoke with, said she had never seen so many happy and in love folks. Anyway, as I have posted on the boards, it's the 21st century and if you can't deal with two guys holding hands on their way to dinner, then perhaps you need to rethink your vacation choices. Summary With the exception of the Port Canaveral and Key West issues, it was a great cruise. Hopefully Sun will soon get the tardiness issues resolved. DDP and I enjoy NCL -the price is usually right, we enjoy Freestyle Dining and the informality and have met a lot of great folks aboard and will be cruising them again - apparently so will the cruise virgins - they bought a cruise reward! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2010
This was our second NCL cruise both of which were to South America. Since we were in one of the AD Suites, our embarkation and debarkation processes went very smoothly. Our suite was very nice. It faced forward and was on the Starboard ... Read More
This was our second NCL cruise both of which were to South America. Since we were in one of the AD Suites, our embarkation and debarkation processes went very smoothly. Our suite was very nice. It faced forward and was on the Starboard side. The movement was more than if in a mid-ship cabin but we expected that and were not disappointed. The Concierge and the Butler were great and went out their way to help us. I highly recommend that you spend the extra to get a cabin where the concierge and butler services are offered. It is worth it. The food was mediocre at best. We don't cruise for the food and had heard the Norwegian Sun was not known for excellence in the food category so it was not a big disappointment. However, I would have enjoyed the trip more had the food been a bit higher quality. We had several meals in the Four Seasons, but preferred the specialty restaurants particularly Pacific Heights. Il Adagio was also very good. Because of booking an AD Suite, we were able to enjoy the Concierge Lounge (Il Adagio) for breakfast and lunch. This is a very nice way to enjoy a quiet, relaxed meal during the day. We decided to do the Behind The Scenes tour that is offered onboard (at the price of $55 per person). It was okay but not worth it. The group was too big and it was hard to hear the tour guide particularly in the kitchen prep areas. There are no microphones, and coupled with the noise in the kitchen area (which is expected) one could not hear what was being explained unless you were right in front of the guide. The rest of the tour went better, particularly seeing the bridge and meeting the captain. Again, I wouldn't repeat the tour on another cruise. We met some very interesting people during the 14 days and we got to see a lot of very unusual and interesting sights on our shore excursions. The trip is rustic and many of the trips included rough roads. Weather ranges from very hot to very cold so bring clothes accordingly. One big disappointment (not the fault of the ship) was we couldn't get off to go to the Falklands. The weather was so bad. The Falklands is a tender port and the day we arrived, the winds were gusting to 60 mps which made it impossible to take tenders into town. We heard that this was not uncommon. One man said he had tried twice and had never yet made it to shore. Another person said they had tried four times and never made it. Maybe NCL should consider skipping the Falklands and extending the stay at Montevideo or some other of the other ports. By the way Montevideo is great as is Buenos Aires. Overall it was a great trip. We are glad that we went and saw parts of the world we never thought we would see. Now it's on to other parts of the world! Happy Cruising to All! Read Less
Sail Date: October 2009
This was only our second cruise, the first was about 8 years ago on the Celebrity Horizon, a much older ship (so old that it didn't have balconies)! That cruise was a 7-night Western Caribbean with family, and although we had a great ... Read More
This was only our second cruise, the first was about 8 years ago on the Celebrity Horizon, a much older ship (so old that it didn't have balconies)! That cruise was a 7-night Western Caribbean with family, and although we had a great time it was not what I'd call relaxing. My most distinct memory from that cruise was laying by the pool for the first time on the last full day of the trip thinking, "Wow, this is great, why didn't I do more of this?" So on this trip, my partner and I were really just looking to get away and relax for several days, and the Norwegian Sun proved to be just perfect for that. As other reviewers have noted, embarkation did not go smoothly. We showed up at the pier at about 11:30AM, and there was a very long line running down the sidewalk in front of the pier. It was an unusually hot day in San Francisco, and it was a bit uncomfortable standing in direct sun for an hour, but we were excited enough about the trip that we didn't let it dampen our spirits. A woman with a clipboard walked down the line and called out for suite passengers to come with her for priority embarkation. We had booked a mini-suite, and asked her if that qualified, but it didn't. Eventually we made our way on board and were handed a glass of champagne, and walked around the ship. We somehow got turned around while looking for our cabin and ended up on the wrong deck and wandered into the wrong cabin (all the cabin doors were open in this particular hallway). I have to admit that my heart sank a little when I walked in, this didn't look anything like the pictures of the mini-suites I'd seen on the NCL site, and the bathroom was tiny! We suddenly realized we'd gotten turned around, made our way up to deck 11 and found our mini-suite. Turns out we'd wandered into a regular balcony cabin. I bring all this up because I read so many people online stating that there is really no difference between balconies and the mini-suites other than the curtain dividing the living/sleeping area, a few extra square feet and a bathtub. Having seen both cabin types, I can tell you that there is much more storage space in the minis. The bathroom alone is huge, and is combined with sort of a walk in closet area, and overall it's just a much nicer room. I had brought one of the infamous over-the-door shoe holders to use for storing stuff in the bathroom, and just laughed when I saw all the storage space. The shoe holder spent the entire cruise tucked away in my suitcase. There was a complimentary bottle of champagne in the cabin along with red wine from our online travel agent, and later in the cruise our steward gave us brand-new complimentary NCL robes (the lighter waffle-weave type). There were also heavy, terry cloth robes in the cabin for use throughout the trip. We LOVED our cabin. As I said, it was on deck 11, and we found that really convenient. I got in the habit of bringing a couple of thermal mugs to the buffet every morning to get coffee to enjoy on our balcony. The coffee from the buffet always seemed a little hotter and better than the room service coffee. It was also nice to be so close to the pool, and convenient to just pop out and get cocktails to go from the Topsider's Bar at the pool. Word of warning though--if you're a light sleeper or you go to bed early, the deck 11 forward suites/mini-suites may not be for you. You can hear the thumping bass from the Observation Lounge until about 1:00AM each night. This didn't bother us (we live in a noisy neighborhood in SF and have grown kind of impervious to noise) but I can see how it might annoy some folks. We stayed out on our balcony as we sailed out under the Golden Gate Bridge and it was truly magical. Throughout the cruise we enjoyed so many awesome sights from the balcony: Flying fish, pods of dancing dolphins, whales, etc. Our steward, Noel, was terrific. Any request we made was handled promptly and he was always friendly when we ran into him around the ship. We got towel animals three nights, and being kids at heart we just loved that. As for the food, I read enough reviews here on Cruise Critic that my expectations were pretty low. Our first night we ate at the Seven Seas, and both of our meals tasted like frozen dinners from the supermarket. Even with low expectations I was a little taken aback, like, "Wow, I didn't realize it would be THIS bad!" Dinner the next night at Four Seasons was not much better, but our experiences improved after that. We tried Il Adagio, and the room itself is great. Very special atmosphere, but we found the food just so-so. We went on to try the East West Steakhouse and had a fantastic meal there, fillet Mignon with choice of all sorts of delicious side dishes. We went back there a second time and ordered the same thing and found it just okay...the quality of the meat we'd had on the first night was much better. We had a good meal at Le Bistro and gave Seven Seas a second chance later in the cruise, and had a very good meal there. I guess the conclusion we came to is that you can't really say that any particular restaurant is great or awful, because you go back and it's not really consistent. We did manage to have some good meals throughout the trip though (more good than bad). We had several lunches at The Great Outdoors, which serves standard hot dog/hamburger fare. The food is nothing special but adequate, and it's very nice to sit outside aft under a shady canopy. On the last full day of the cruise we were treated to lots of whale sightings from that spot while we ate lunch. Fellow cruisers were jumping up and down and applauding the whales. It was a blast. As for the main buffet, the food was mostly fine, but dealing with the buffet line could be too much sometimes. As I said, I popped in there for coffee every morning and since the coffee station was separate from the main line I didn't have any problems, but every single day I heard passengers complaining that someone had cut in front of them. I really don't think this buffet was designed to have a single line, you're supposed to just approach the station you want to go to and get what you want. The first stop in the line was an omelet station. People waiting five minutes for their omelets to be made apparently felt that people who wanted the pancakes (which came after the omelets) should stand behind them for five minute instead of just going to the empty pancake station and tossing a few on their plate. All this could be solved if they had an NCL employee to act as wrangler in there. "Are you waiting for an omelet, Ma'am? No? Great, then proceed to the pancakes!" Because we had so many sea days we spent a lot of time hanging out at the pool, which was great. I only saw serious chair-hog action going on one day. When we arrived in Mazatlan, it was an extremely hot day and since we didn't have an excursion planned we decided to skip that port. We had no trouble getting chairs in the shade by the pool, but they filled up quickly and we noticed that there were about ten loungers in a row in a prime shady spot that people had "reserved" by placing books, towels, and t-shirts on them. All day long seniors and disabled people wandered past looking for a nice place to sit in the shade and looked longingly at these unused loungers. The chair hogs must have gone into the port for the day, because they didn't show up to claim their spot until the very end of the day. Unbelievably selfish! But like the buffet line, it would be nice if there was an NCL employee assigned to the pool area to handle stuff like this. The only staff I saw by the pool were the drinks waiters and they had enough to deal with. I sat speechless and watched one day as a lady brought a diapered infant into the main fresh-water pool. This is not only against the rules, it's also just plain gross! I stuck to the salt water pool after that. There is a kid's pool, but it didn't seem to get much use. As for shore excursions we didn't do as many as planned. We had a beach excursion planned in Cabo that was cancelled for lack of interest. There was a big thunder and lightning storm early on the day we arrived in PV, and the Las Caletas trip was not officially cancelled, but they gave us the option of not going/not paying, which most of the people in line decided to do. Going to the beach in the rain is one thing, but being on a catamaran in a lightning storm sounded a little scary. One of the highlights of the cruise was taking the Behind the Scenes Tour. I would not have known how great this was had I not read about it in the NCL forum here on Cruise Critic. There was an announcement made about it in the Freestyle Daily on the second day of the cruise and we signed up for it immediately. When the day came to take the tour (it cost $50) only 14 of us had signed up for it. Incidentally, we ran into a couple of experienced cruisers who tried to dissuade us from doing this tour, "It's a rip off! They don't show you the ship, they just take you to Dazzles and show you a movie about it!" None of this was true, and I'm glad we went. We were taken throughout the ship, down to deck one where the crew stays, saw their nightclub/lounge, went through the galleys, the provisions, backstage at Dazzles, and eventually to the bridge which was just thrilling! Overall I thought the service on the ship was very good, in many cases excellent. We filled out several STYLE cards at the end of the cruise complimenting our regular drinks waiters and our Steward. We only encountered less-than-polite service once, from the hostess at Il Adagio. Our friendly, "Hellos" were met by her with a sour stare, then she walked us by several empty window tables and I asked if we could sit at one. This prompted a "No" as she continued walking and led us to a noisy table directly across from the kitchen doors. We sat down, realized it was so loud that we couldn't hear each other, and when an employee came to greet us at our table we asked if we could switch to one of the empty window seats and he said, "Sure!" He re-seated us, and Little Miss Sunshine, the hostess, proceeded to stomp down the aisle and loudly chew him out. Weird. Still, only encountering one bad apple on an 11 day cruise is pretty good, I think. The only other service issue I noticed is that we found it less than easy to get drinks/wine in the main dining rooms. I really didn't expect this since so many reviewers complained that NCL really pushes the drinks on passengers. At Seven Seas the first night, we planned to start off with a cocktail and get a bottle of wine. The cocktails arrived when we were taking the last bites of our entrees, and we were never given a wine list. This happened in all the main dining/free dining venues--we had to ask, then wait for a wine list. In the pay restaurants they automatically give you a wine list with your menu. NCL lost revenue they could have made from us on a few occasions due to this. As I mentioned, this was our first NCL cruise, and I really did enjoy the whole Freestyle dining concept of having a choice of when/where you want to go and not having to dress up. When we went on our Celebrity cruise with my family, we had the traditional experience of sitting at the same time at the same table every night, and getting dressed to the nines for dinner, even on non-formal nights. It was fun to have had that experience once, but I really didn't miss the whole getting dressed up thing. We wore nice-enough clothes to dinner but not anything at all formal. I've seen NCL reviews in which people complain that some passengers dress really inappropriately (ripped jeans, tank-tops, flip-flops) in the main dining rooms, but I didn't see any of that except for in the Buffet where you can where whatever you want (as long as you have a shirt/shoes on). And if you feel like dressing formally, you won't be alone, there were always a handful of people really dressed up. We got room service many times for breakfast, and hung our order on the door card the previous night. Service was always prompt and they'd call to warn you so you could grab a robe before they came knocking, which was nice. We got pastries/muffins, juice and coffee for breakfast and they were fine. We were lazy one night and ordered room service dinner and we would have been better off grabbing something from the buffet. I got a tuna melt thinking that sounded nice and simple and it was a cold sandwich served with toast with about a tablespoon of dark tuna and a cold piece of swiss cheese. Not at all appetizing. Fellow cruisers were mostly a friendly bunch - most of the people we talked to seemed to be from the SF Bay area, and there was always a relaxed, party vibe at the pool. I was impressed by how polite people were to their fellow cruisers, and the few exceptions I saw to that were handled by the fellow-cruisers with humor. Waiting in line to take the tender into Cabo there were a few passengers who got off the elevator, glanced at the line and clearly thought the line didn't apply to them and pranced up to the front. They got swiftly shouted down and sent to the back of the line by the rest of the passengers. It was pretty funny. All in all, it was a relaxing, wonderful cruise. Sure, the food wasn't spectacular, but we didn't expect it to be. We booked this cruise kind of last-minute, in late August, and got what I think is a pretty good deal. The price we paid per night/per person wouldn't have gotten us a room in a fancy hotel, much less meals. For both of us the main attraction here was having a relaxing vacation and enjoying time at sea, and the Sun fit the bill perfectly. We weren't that interested in the shows, though we enjoyed listening to the musicians in the smaller venues a few times. We popped in to Dazzles on to watch part of the big finale show, and it was kind of cheesy, dancers and crew doing a rousing rendition of, "We are the World." But like the food, we weren't on the cruise for the shows. We live in a city with endless great food options, and are lucky enough to see top-notch live performances on a regular basis. We just loved being on the ocean and travelling by boat in what turned out to be very luxurious accommodations (I miss you mini-suite)!! We happen to live just a few blocks from Pier 35, so it was kind of awesome to just disembark, hop in a cab and be home in five minutes. We had such a great time that the day I came home I went to the NCL site to book the same trip for next year, but they're not doing it in 2010, so we booked a round-trip from SF to Alaska on Princess instead. If NCL planned any itinerary round trip from SF I'd sign up again in a heartbeat! Read Less
Norwegian Sun Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.5 4.2
Dining 4.0 3.7
Entertainment 3.5 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.8
Family 3.5 3.8
Shore Excursion 3.5 3.7
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 3.5 4.1
Value For Money 3.5 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.1

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