Some good, some bad

Norwegian Jade Cruise Review to Europe - Mediterranean

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Reviews: 2
Helpful Votes: 34

Overall rating:

3 out of 5
Verified Review
Norwegian Jade

14 Night Ultimate Mediterranean (Venice Roundtrip)

Sail date: July 12, 2014

Ship: Norwegian Jade

Cabin type: Suite

Cabin number: 11544

Traveled as: Family (older children)

Reviewed: 7 years ago

Review summary

The ship was lovely.  The cabin was terrific -- I highly recommend upgrading to a mini suite if you can; the extra space and privacy really made our vacation.  Cabin service was wonderful and everything always spotless.  The food was strictly pedestrian. With very few menu changes.  With only a couple of exceptions, I can't say that anyone in our traveling party (6) enjoyed it at all.  And let's face it, the food is one of the pleasures of a cruise!  Service in the main dining rooms was almost always awful and terribly slow.  I believe staff overall was overworked.  Rarely were you greeted with a smile. The excursions were WAY overpriced; choose carefully.  Most weren't that good.  Headsets that didn't work properly; tour guides no one could understand.  I wish we had used an outside vendor as someone recommended.  However, some of the deadlines were tight and we know the ship won't wait for you if you're using an outside vendor so we elected not to.  We adjusted our tip at the end BIG TIME; something we don't usually do,  We left something for everyone then chose to parcel out our tip where we felt service was merited.  I would not do this tour again on Norwegian; maybe Celebrity.  I talked to some people from a Celebrity cruise that were doing the same tour and they were having so much fun.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

1 out of 5
Just awful; nothing more I can say. Looked lovely, but poor quality, poor service, repetitive

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5
I thought they were marginal; I didn't do much that was offered, mostly because I had no interest in things like a half-hearted 15 minute trivia game. Went to bingo with friends. I was bored and so were they.


3 out of 5
The shows I saw (maybe 7-8 were ok

Children's Programs

Didn't use

Service and Staff

3 out of 5
Good and bad spots; food service genuinely awful most of the time. Casino staff was wonderful and always remembered your name; made you feel like a "high roller"

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
Ship was pretty and spotless

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
We all thought this was the perfect cabin. Queen bed that could be separated -- we are all poor sleepers. Nice large bathroom with tub if you wanted it. Sofa bed with a curtain to pull between it and the main bedroom. Midship; experienced little rocking. One flight up to the buffet, two to the sundeck, spa, card room, library, gym. Only two plugs and way across the room from the bed; one of our best pre-trip purchases was a short extension cord and a mini power strip from Container Store.

Ship tip

Upgrade to a mini suite if you can. Also, if you need to do laundry, watch for half off coupons that seemed to come every other day. The few things we placed on the balcony dried well. If you are a REAL early riser there is a self serve continental breakfast in Blue Lagoon/buffet

Ports of call

Venice, Italy

5 out of 5
Gondola ride, Doges Palace, churches

Piraeus (Athens), Greece

5 out of 5
Acropolis, Parthenon

Kusadasi (Ephesus), Turkey

5 out of 5
Great tour guide on this one; ruins and lecture were amazing

Santorini, Greece

5 out of 5
Enjoyed walking the volcano; no time to explore Santorini. Went up on the cable cars, had to come immediately back down because the volcano portion went too long. Watch out for long lines going down. The short lines going up can fool you into lingering too long

Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy

5 out of 5
Beautiful Sistine chapel and St. Peter's Basilica. Tour guides hard to understand. Hard to keep everyone together' keep close eyes on your tour guide. WATCH YOUR WALLET in Rome, several on our ship were pickpocketed with very clever schemes

Livorno (Florence & Pisa), Italy

3 out of 5
We elected to go on our own and couldn't climb the Leaning Tower. Lines were too long; unless you were on a tour you couldn't get in. Sadly I did not get to florence because I didn't take the hsip's tour.

Cannes, France

5 out of 5
Beautiful scenery. Took a train to Monaco; spent most of our time doing nothing b/c Monte Carlo was closed. Felt like we missed a lot by not taking a tour; but at this point we were all sick of paying ship's prices for mediocre tours

Valletta, Malta

5 out of 5
Absolutely beautiful. Did a hop on hop off bus tour with friends (meets right at the port) while some of our group did something else. Truly enjoyed it.

Messina, Sicily

5 out of 5
Again, didn't do an excursion, but the port area was lovely. Walkable with some shops close by; places to have gelato or coffee and a lovely bakery. Enjoyed laying low here.
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