Return to Cruising Ship Guide: Norwegian Gem
When is Norwegian Gem slated to resume operations?
Norwegian Gem will resume sailing in the Caribbean beginning August 15, 2021. The ship will sail roundtrip from PortMiami offering 7-night cruises to Roatan (Honduras), Harvest Caye (Belize), Costa Maya (Mexico), and Cozumel (Mexico).
Norwegian Cruise Line is requiring that ALL guests and crew be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 at least 14 days prior to sailing and provide proof of vaccination for sailings departing on or before October 31, 2021.
Cruising on Norwegian Gem? Here’s our guide to everything you need to know before you board.
About the Ship: Norwegian’s motto of “Freestyle Cruising” is at the heart of the wide range of activities and entertainment on Gem. Onboard ship highlights include: the Tahitian Pool, a Casino, the Stardust Theatre, six hot tubs, basketball and tennis courts, Bliss Ultra Lounge, kids and teens clubs, a video arcade, and numerous restaurants and lounges. The ship can accommodate up to 2,394 passengers (prior to COVID-19 restrictions), and includes 1,197 total cabins.
Activities + Entertainment: Norwegian Gem is packed with a variety of activities and entertainment for kids and adults alike. For families with younger travelers, the ship offers supervised spaces for both kids and teens. Active travelers can burn off calories from breakfast at the ship’s open-air jogging track, join a game on one of the outdoor sports courts, or take a dip in the Tahitian pool. Looking to relax? Head to the full-service Mandara Spa and Salon or check out the six hot tubs onboard. At night, sit back and watch a Broadway-style show in the Stardust Theater or go dancing at the Spinnaker Lounge.
Dining: Norwegian Gem offers 16 specialty and included dining venues. With so much variety, there’s certain to be something to please every traveler’s palate. Freestyle dining on Norwegian Gem gives you the option to eat when, where and with whom you like, with no assigned dining times or tables. Included dining venues include the Bali Hai Bar, O’Sheehan’s Bar and Grill, the Garden Cafe, Grand Pacific, Magenta, Orchid Garden, The Great Outdoors, and Topsiders Bar and Grill. Specialty eateries include Teppanyaki, Le Bistro, Java Cafe, Cagney’s Steakhouse, La Cucina, Sushi, and Moderno Churrascaria.
Pricing: As travelers get excited about the return of cruising, these sailings on the Norwegian Gem are filling up fast with pricing changing daily. Right now you can expect to pay about $90 per person per night for entry-level accommodations. Consider booking a balcony cabin, so you have your own private space to enjoy the Caribbean sunshine. Balcony cabins on Norwegian Gem currently start at about $180 per person per night and go up based on location and category.
If you find a price you like for the sailing you want, book it NOW as chances are it won't last long!
What to Expect at Embarkation
Many details are still being ironed out when it comes to embarkation especially on the first few sailings. Expect to provide proof of vaccination prior to sailing and again during the socially- distanced and staggered embarkation process. All guests will be assigned a check-in time and are asked to arrive at the pier only during this time frame.
Guests will take an antigen test at the pier (paid for by Norwegian Cruise Line) and will need a negative result prior to boarding the ship. Initial sailings will be capacity controlled to allow for more space per passenger during the cruise as well as feature contactless food and beverage service. For more details on Norwegian’s Sail Safe plan and answers to frequently asked questions, click here.
Tips from Our Community Members:
Loved the great outdoors for breakfast and tea time! - yhene
Make sure and go to the poolside every evening for the BBQ and entertainment. - Trinigyal
Sign up for a Behind-the-Scenes tour of the cruise ship as soon as you board - it books up fast! - junkmail247
With so much to see and do in the ports Norwegian Gem visits, you will want to book your excursions as early as possible. The top-rated excursions by port are:
Harvest Caye, Belize - Harvest Caye is Norwegian Cruise Line’s own private island located in beautiful Southern Belize. The 75-acre oasis features an expansive pool with a swim-up bar, salt water lagoon for water sports, and a 7-acre beach. Guests looking to splurge for a day of relaxation will love the luxury beachside cabanas that accommodate up to six travelers. Each cabana offers its own private beach oasis complete with lounge chairs, food and beverage service, air conditioning, and included transportation.
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