rkstraight

rkstraight
Cruise Director

Hometown: New Bern, NC
Joined: 02/17/2015
21
Cruises
6
Reviews
18
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Norwegian Getaway

May 2017 - Norwegian Getaway to Europe - Northern Europe

Baltic Capitols

Great itinerary and weather. Saint Petersburg was amazing and worth the night and second day to take it all in. Both Finland and Sweden were underwhelming. Nice beach and tourist area you can walk to from ship in Germany.

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Norwegian Getaway

April 2017 - Norwegian Getaway to Transatlantic

First Transatlantic Cruise

Where should I begin? The first six days of the cruise were better than expected in many ways - i.e. weather, entertainment & overall comfort. Then things went downhill! Our first port-of-call in the Azores was cancelled due to high seas so we now would have 10 sea days in a row before reaching land. Brest, France was the first port we visited and NCL was not prepared to off-load 4000 passengers in this tiny port. Some folks waited in line two hours to get off the ship and others waited two hours to get back on. There was only one gangway and it was wet, at too much of an angle and people were getting off and on using the same gangway - a chaotic mess ensued. I blame NCL for this situation since they should have known water levels and certainly could have deployed additional gangways.

Our next port was Southampton, England and since one of the Azipods broke we arrived there close to noon rather than early morning. To make matters worse the EU inspectors needed to see and stamp every cruisers passport even if they weren't getting off the ship. This process took four hours to complete and we didn't get off the ship until 4 PM and thus missed our excursion. We then stayed in port until midnight to finish the repairs and then left England. Since the broken part and subsequent repair put us behind we were informed that the best port on the cruise - Bruges,Belgium - was going to be skipped in favor of another sea day and early arrival in Rotterdam. The extra night there was fine but now we had missed three shore excursions. Holland and Denmark were great but there were lots of angry passengers and the meager $100/passenger compensation didn't appease many cruisers, especially since the same monetary award was offered to everyone without regard as to the cost per cabin.

The last item I want to mention here is that by day 14 I developed a severe lung infection and ended up going to a pharmacy in the first port of the second half of our back-to-back itinerary. I was given a strong expectorant in Talinn, Estonia and the condition kept getting worse. The next four days were so uncomfortable that I had to sleep sitting up and was exhausted all the time from coughing. My wife also got sick and in Copenhagen I went to a 24 hour pharmacy for more drugs. Still not getting better I then went to a walk-in clinic at a hospital and had blood work and x-rays done. I am home now and still sick so it's close to two weeks since first contracting the "bug". We read tonight on the Cruise Critic site that several other passengers have experienced similar symptoms. I have to again blame NCL for the the lax "washie-washie" policy throughout our 25 night cruise. And no we are not first time cruisers, we are Platinum Plus on NCL and have three other cruises booked with them. I must say that right now I am close to cancelling them unless NCL steps up with adequate compensation for this recent experience. They will be getting a copy of this review.

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Majesty of the Seas

January 2017 - Majesty of the Seas to Caribbean - Bahamas

Nice Older Ship

We took a four day cruise on RCCL's Majesty of the Seas and had low expectations due to the age of the ship - 25 years. Staff was great and ship was amazingly stable during rough seas. Dining options were quite limited with only a two story main dining room and one buffet. After 9 PM your only "free" option was pizza. The ship had an amazing number of inside cabins, again probably due to it's vintage. Locker room was tiny with no benches and poorly designed steam room. Senior staff was quite visible and very outgoing. We were surprised there were so many high ranking Crown & Anchor members on such a short cruise. One man had over 1500 points and several had more than 700. Overall not a bad getaway. Better than what I expected from reading reviews. 

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Norwegian Gem

October 2016 - Norwegian Gem to Caribbean - Southern

Norwegian Gem

October 2016 - Norwegian Gem to Caribbean - Southern

Norwegian Gem

Nice size ship with several dining options included. We always enjoy the show toward end of cruise when senior staff and behind the scenes workers come on stage. Captain Roger was great on bass guitar and vocals.

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Norwegian Gem

October 2016 - Norwegian Gem to Caribbean - Southern

Norwegian Gem

Nice size ship with several dining options included. We always enjoy the show toward end of cruise when senior staff and behind the scenes workers come on stage. Captain Roger was great on bass guitar and vocals.

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Freedom of the Seas

December 2015 - Freedom of the Seas to Caribbean - Eastern

Norwegian Getaway

October 2015 - Norwegian Getaway to Caribbean - Eastern

Great New Ship!

Lots of free dining options and entertainment venues.  Wasn't sure how cruising on such a large ship would be but we were very pleased with the Getaway.  Only really crowded area was around the main pool.  The Legally Blonde production was first class, much more elaborate than normal production shows.  Disappointed with the Grammy Experience but loved the Howl at the Moon show.  The Atrium area had too much activity much of the time and it was hard to hear staff at various stations. When the captain was speaking there was so much noise from air hockey that you couldn't hear him.

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Norwegian Jade

February 2015 - Norwegian Jade to Europe - Mediterranean

Eastern Med Experience

Great first time trip to Greece and Turkey.  Could spend a week or more in Istanbul alone.  We did learn that weather in that part of the world can be unpredictable, just like back in the states.  We had to skip one port in Greece due to high waves in the port.  One nice thing about NCL was that any time a port was missed the captain had staff hand out free rum punches for about an hour.  Nice little extra that other cruise lines could learn from.

 

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Norwegian Jade

February 2015 - Norwegian Jade to Europe - Mediterranean

Eastern Med Experience

Great first time trip to Greece and Turkey.  Could spend a week or more in Istanbul alone.  We did learn that weather in that part of the world can be unpredictable, just like back in the states.  We had to skip one port in Greece due to high waves in the port.  One nice thing about NCL was that any time a port was missed the captain had staff hand out free rum punches for about an hour.  Nice little extra that other cruise lines could learn from.

 

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Norwegian Jade

January 2015 - Norwegian Jade to Europe - Western Mediterranean

Norwegian Sun

March 2014 - Norwegian Sun to Caribbean - Southern

Explorer of the Seas

October 2013 - Explorer of the Seas to Bermuda

Norwegian Jewel

February 2013 - Norwegian Jewel to Caribbean - Bahamas

Norwegian Sun

February 2012 - Norwegian Sun to Caribbean - Western

Norwegian Star

May 2010 - Norwegian Star to Alaska - Inside Passage

rkstraight's Tips

Norwegian Getaway Norwegian Getaway - Make your reservations early for Burn the Floor and Million Dollar Quartet. Also the new Cirque Show is worth the upcharge.
Norwegian Getaway Norwegian Getaway - Check out Margaritaville for breakfast - never busy and much quieter than Garden Cafe.
Majesty of the Seas Majesty of the Seas - Make sure you get off the ship at Coco Cay. Plenty of chairs and miles of beach. Many different activities you can pay for but exploring is free.
Nassau, Bahamas - Enjoyed a walking tour of city with rum tastings and visit to Graycliff property.
Norwegian Getaway Norwegian Getaway - Download NCL's free iConcierge app before getting on the ship and you can use it while aboard to book shows and dining very easily.
Toulon, France - Ship anchored 30 minutes away from actual city and a water taxi ride was required to get to starting point of all tours.
Barcelona, Spain - Hop on/hop off bus is worth taking. Reserve your tour ahead of time for LaSagrada Familia since they are scheduled every 15 minutes and if you are late you are out of luck.
Valencia, Spain - Poor city but lots of green areas. Porcelein tour was neat and no pressure to buy afterwards.
Kusadasi (Ephesus), Turkey - Blown away by size and details of ruins. Check: EphesusDeluxe.com for an indepedent tour which includes Istanbul.
Piraeus (Athens), Greece - We did a free walking tour that lasted over 2 1/2 hours and the guide was terrific. He gives tours on the weekends on his own and works just for tips. Check: AthensFreeWalkingTour.com website before booking through cruise line.

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commented on the roll call for Dec 2, 2017 cruise on Norwegian Epic - "What site are you referring to, Cruise C..."

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received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Getaway cruise review - Baltic Capitols

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Getaway cruise review - Baltic Capitols

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Getaway cruise review - Baltic Capitols

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Getaway cruise review - Baltic Capitols

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Getaway cruise review - First Transatlantic Cruise

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Getaway cruise review - Baltic Capitols

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Getaway cruise review - Baltic Capitols