November 2013 - Norwegian Pearl to Caribbean - Western
Ship turned out not to be as big as appeared by description, thus there were not necessarily as many different or interesting activities on board. The lounge areas need cleaned and/or updated furniture. The freestyle dining is a nice option because it frees your schedule, however the buffet food is mediocre, nothing fabulous. In addition, the specialty dining fees are not worth it. The food is not superior in those restaurants by any stretch of the imagination and therefore, you've simply paid more money for food that day outside of the per diem built into the cost of the cruise. For example, I ordered shrimp fried rice in which the shrimp (likely size 50-60) were sliced into discs and there couldn't have been more than three in the entire dish. I've never had sliced discs of shrimp in any asian restaurant, but there was a $15 premium to dine there.
Our excursion in the Cayman Islands was contracted with a tour company that had buses with 1970s or earlier upholstery - cigarette holes, spider webs and all. The driver rushed us through the experience because the other tours were arriving during our scheduled time. NCL should do more research in relationship to the quality of the experience for the cruisers.
The staff were very helpful and cordial overall.