Accommodations, Cruising, DESTINATIONS, International, Restaurants & Bars, TRAVEL

Sail Away on the Norwegian Epic

Let's Sail Away!
Let’s Sail Away!


As Bill helped me find homes for my last few pieces of clothing, we realized it was time for the boat to embark upon it’s journey. Coming out of our room, we ran into Deb and Joe, who had also been unpacking, but with less fervor.  Deb knows how to live out of a suitcase. Since we were only a couple of flights down from the Lido deck, we hit the stairs, like many of our fellow passengers did.

What Happened to Free

By the time we made it to the top, Deb and Joe were nowhere in sight. Assuming they were right behind us, we grabbed four lounge chairs by the pool, but as the minutes passed we realized they’d gone elsewhere and that pool-side lounge chairs weren’t prime real estate for watching the departure, so we ventured further.  Later we discovered Deb and Joe had enjoyed the sail away from the bridge-viewing area.

Now on my first two cruises, both well over a decade ago, the sail away party was actually a party where complimentary hors d’oeuvres and drinks were served.  I probably don’t need to tell you that this wasn’t the case on the Epic.  You could buy all the drinks you wanted, but no waiters were wandering among us with free munchies.  About all we had wandering among us were photographers taking pictures we could purchase later.

Safety over Sights

Something else we missed was an exterior walkway around the pool area.  You had to go up a deck to see out, because the windbreak for the pool area abutted the side of the ship.  We climbed to the upper deck and found our spot watching the traffic along the MacArthur Causeway watch the cruise boats pulling out of Miami.

Here's an old Carnival ship that Bill thinks has the appropriate configuration for a proper sail away party.
Here’s an old Carnival ship that Bill thinks has the appropriate configuration for a proper sail away party.

There Bill found another thing that had changed and not to his liking.  Most likely for the sake of safety, panes of glass had been added above the railing.  I’ll admit it was a little distracting, but Bill was really chapped about it.  That might be because I could comfortably peer out between the panes.  Bill had to bend down to peek between the panes of glass.

Leaving the Harbor

After the MacArthur Causeway, we passed a ferry dock and rounded South Beach.  Then we pulled out into the Atlantic Ocean and looked north up Miami Beach.  What a sight! Too bad we’d left the camera below.  Soon, we passed the last buoy.  That meant we were really at sea.

A Little Exploring

Bill and I explored the boat a little bit.  Three decks up from the lido deck, we found another sundeck.  There’s no public pool up there and signs informed us this was a “Quiet Area” – that’s Norwegian for “Don’t bother The Haven passengers.”  See the front of the ship on decks 16 and 17 is a whole ‘nother world.  That’s where the suites are.  I’m very sorry to say that you will have to look elsewhere for a report on Epic’s Haven.

Now, I’m not one of those folks that resent rich people.  Heck, I wouldn’t mind being a rich person.  However, it beats me why Norwegian allows the general public up on deck 18, at all.  If I had paid for a suite in The Haven and was hanging out at the private pool, having drinks delivered from the Posh Bar, there’s no way I’d like some yokel two floors up doing pull-up to look down into my retreat.  Would you? I didn’t think so.

But it was almost time for dinner.  You want to go to the Manhattan Room?  Then join us next week.

2 thoughts on “Sail Away on the Norwegian Epic”

  1. The buffets on Epic were truly Epic. Pretty much whatever you wanted, whenever you wanted it. Not quite 24 hours, but almost. I’ll tell you all about the freestyle dining experience as we go through my week – from the two main dining rooms to the specialty restaurants.


  2. I’m looking forward to hearing about your dinner service. All of the Norwegian cruises I’ve taken have served 24 hr buffet style and I’ve missed the sit down dinners of other cruises. I will say the buffets have been heavy on raw fish and cheese.


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