Norwegian Joy Overview

By - Updated Sep. 20, 2019

Packed with both adult-oriented and family-friendly amenities, Norwegian Joy brings the upscale side of Norwegian Cruise Line to the shores of Alaska and the beaches of the Mexican Riviera. Originally built in 2017 for the Asian market, Norwegian Joy received $50 million in refurbishments in 2019 before being repositioned to the American market to join her sister ship, Norwegian Bliss, in Alaska. Today, the redesigned Joy offers an impressive variety of activities, entertainment, and dining developed especially for North American travelers.

Competitive families will feel right at home thanks to the onboard laser tag, five-hole miniature golf course, and two-story go-kart speedway. There's also a fully equipped water park with two exciting features, the high-speed Aqua Racer and the Ocean Loop, whose enclosed tunnel slide spirals precariously over the edge of the deck. Plus, families can take advantage of the Entourage teen club and Splash Academy activity center for complimentary childcare. A mini water park for little ones and a virtual reality space filled with 3D games for all ages round out the ship’s extensive lineup of onboard activities.

Adults can catch the sunset from the open-air Waterfront promenade, wander into one of the poolside lounges, or head to the theater for an evening of music and laughs. In addition to stand-up, live DJs, and classic rock bands, Joy has two signature shows, the musical Footloose, and the earth-inspired acrobatic revue ELEMENTS! Passengers can also book tickets to Norwegian's popular Wine Lovers The Musical, a dinner theater production that, as you might have guessed, comes with plenty of drinks. Top dining choices include premium cuts at Cagney's Steakhouse, French favorites at Le Bistro, pasta and seafood at La Cucina, and the hibachi restaurant Teppanyaki.

Norwegian Joy cruises visit destinations along the Pacific Coast from Mexico to Alaska with periodic visits to Miami via the Panama Canal. The ship's Alaskan cruise season begins in May and runs through September, and all 7-night Alaskan cruises depart from Seattle, Washington. In the fall, Joy heads down the coast to its second homeport in Los Angeles. For much of the year, Joy takes passengers on 7-night trips across the Mexican Riviera, including ports of call in Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta, and Cabo San Lucas. Longer 16-night cruises travel through the Panama Canal between Miami and L.A.

Ship Highlights

  • Three pools and nine whirlpools
  • Water park featuring the Ocean Loop and Aqua Racer slides
  • Kids’ aqua park
  • Go-kart racing, laser tag, and mini-golf
  • Splash Academy kids club
  • Entourage teen club
  • Galaxy Pavilion virtual reality games
  • ELEMENTS! acrobatic stage show
  • Broadway shows, including Footloose
  • Wine Lovers The Musical dinner and drinks theater
  • Seventeen lounges, including the Sugarcane Mojito Bar
  • The Waterfront open-air promenade
  • The Cavern Club rock venue
  • Social Comedy and Night Club
  • Casino at 678 Ocean Place
  • Adults-only Spice H2O
  • Mandara Spa & Salon
  • Pulse fitness center

Before You Book

Why Sail on Norwegian Joy: Norwegian Joy caters to couples, families, and mature travelers seeking a destination-focused cruise experience while still sailing on a large, cutting-edge ship with the latest innovations.

You Should Know: While other cruise lines relegate their older, smaller ships to sail destination-focused itineraries like Alaska, Norwegian Joy is a huge, brand-new ship full of action and excitement. If you’re just sailing to explore America’s last frontier and don’t care about high-tech bells and whistles, you can find cheaper (and less-crowded) options elsewhere.

Check out our experience sailing on Norwegian Joy

Norwegian Joy Ship Stats

  • Price:
  • Size: L
  • Total Passengers: 3,804
  • Total Crew: 1,794
  • Passenger to Crew Ratio: 2.12
  • Built: Apr 2017
  • Refurbished: Apr 2019
  • Number of Decks: 16
  • Total Cabins: 1,925
  • Cabin Categories: 37
  • Gross Tonnage: 167,725
  • Length: 1,094
  • Beam: 136


  • Cabin / Stateroom 4.4
  • Children's Programs 4.2
  • Entertainment 4.2
  • Food and Dining 4.2
  • Onboard Activities 3.9
  • Service and Staff 4.4
  • Ship Quality 4.5


1925 cabins and 37 cabin categories.

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Inside Cabin Inside
(6 Reviews)
Avg. Size: 160 sq. ft. Avg. Cost: $139/night
Oceanview Cabin Oceanview
(1 Review)
Avg. Size: 283 sq. ft. Avg. Cost: $184/night
Balcony Balcony
(50 Reviews)
Avg. Size: 342 sq. ft. Avg. Cost: $200/night
Suite Cabin Suite
(31 Reviews)
Avg. Size: 530 sq. ft. Avg. Cost: $221/night

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Le Bistro French Restaurant Le Bistro French Restaurant
(7 Reviews)
Ocean Blue Ocean Blue
(6 Reviews)
The Private Room at Taste The Private Room at Taste
(2 Reviews)
The Haven Restaurant The Haven Restaurant
(2 Reviews)

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Onboard Activities

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The Cavern Club The Cavern Club
(4 Reviews)
Sugarcane Mojito Bar Sugarcane Mojito Bar
(9 Reviews)
Maltings Whiskey Bar Maltings Whiskey Bar
(2 Reviews)
Skyline Bar Skyline Bar
(1 Review)

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Deck Plans

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284 Norwegian Joy Reviews

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A different expirence by mlr92847

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Singles/Friends

First time on a Norwegian cruse and was a bit disappointing...I'm disabled and was not warned when I booked that there was going to be a lot of walking to get to elevators. I was using a walker and could not use the stairs. Felt there were not enough daytime activities as other cruse lines and the evening entertainment was good but not enough. Also I have to add, it was worst drink service in public areas I've ever experienced on a cruise!

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1 Comment

Most stressful cruise ever taken but not cruise ships fault - nice ship by crcoverston

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Family (older children)

Overall, would consider trying Norwegian again in future, but as of now, still trying to recover from this last one.

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Fantastic Mexican Riviera Cruise by jenmdominguez80

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Couple

A fantastic voyage overall. Just a few minor complaints, but nothing that would affect the quality of my cruise.

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Norwegian Joy Photos

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209 Norwegian Joy Tips

May 13, 2019

make reservations for the dinners, shows and activities as soon as you can. I really wanted to try Ocean Blue restaurant & Teppayanki but couldn't get in because there weren't any openings.

Aug 13, 2019

Get to observation lounge early. It is packed. It was offensive to me to see people sleeping on all the couches all the time I think this should not be allowed.

Apr 30, 2019

Book everything as soon as you get on board at one of the screens (even before going to your stateroom!) All the popular activities fill up fast, especially the race track.

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