Norwegian Epic arrives at winter home port

Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Epic arrived at her winter home port of Port Canaveral, Fla. on Nov. 12, from which it will depart on its winter sailings on a series of Eastern and Western Caribbean and Bahamas itineraries.

“We saw great success in Port Canaveral when we returned to the port last year with Norwegian Spirit, so we felt it made sense to take our commitment to the next level by bringing Norwegian Epic, one of our largest and most awarded ships, to sail from the area,” Andy Stuart, president and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line (NASDAQ:NCLH), said in a statement.

Norwegian Epic at Port Canaveral, Florida, Norwegian Cruise Lines
Norwegian Epic at Port Canaveral, Florida
The award-winning ship returns to the U.S. after a year in Europe, where she underwent an extensive renovation as a part of the cruise line’s fleet revitalization program. Norwegian Epic arrived in Florida a nearly new ship, Stuart said.

The ship will sail a variety of itineraries varying in length and ports of call, which the company believes will be a recipe for success.

The largest Norwegian ship to ever home port in Port Canaveral, Norwegian Epic will offer a seven-day Eastern Caribbean itinerary perfect for beach lovers, with stops in Tortola, British Virgin Islands; St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands; and Great Stirrup Cay, Bahamas.

Passengers can choose to soak up the sun or opt for an adventurous land-based activity on Norwegian Epic’s Western Caribbean itinerary, which features stops in Cozumel, Mexico; George Town, Grand Cayman; Ocho Rios, Jamaica; and Great Stirrup Cay, Bahamas.

Guests who may not have the time to get away for a week-long vacation can take advantage of three- and four-day Bahamas itineraries in January and March 2017. Those quick getaways include stops in Nassau and Great Stirrup Cay.

Travelers can even choose to celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah or New Year’s at sea, as the Norwegian Epic offers a seven-day Western Caribbean sailing departing Dec. 23 or a seven day Eastern Caribbean sailing departing on Dec.30.

Following her extensive refurbishment as a part of The Norwegian Edge program, the ship offers brand new on-board amenities and entertainment.

All of the ship’s public areas received top to bottom renovations including new lighting fixtures, artwork, wall covering, furniture and more. All restaurants on board also received a more modern look and new menus offering more flexible dining including premium ingredients and additional á la carte options to provide diners with more options.

Entertainers aboard the Norwegian Epic will also present two new Broadway shows as headliners: Burn the Floor and Priscilla, Queen of the Desert – The Musical.

Burn the Floor, which has received rave reviews on two other Norwegian ships, brings the sizzle and passion of ballroom dancing to Norwegian Epic with a high-energy show featuring an international cast of dancers and live-music, according to the cruise line.

Priscilla, Queen of the Desert – The Musical is based on the 1994 movie by Australian film director and writer Stephan Elliott, The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, which was also the inspiration for the perhaps better known 1995 move, To Wong Foo: Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar, starring the late Patrick Swayze, John Leguizamo and Wesley Snipes.

The musical, written by Elliott and Allan Scott, uses well-known pop songs for its musical score as it tells the story of two drag queens and a transgender woman who agree to perform a drag show at a resort in the remote Australian desert town of Alice Springs. Traveling aboard their lavender bus named Priscilla, the characters grapple with a comedy of errors and strange characters as they head west from Sydney. The show features a hit parade of dance floor favorites, including “It’s Raining Men,” “I Will Survive” and “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.”

More information about any of Norwegian’s ships or sailings is available on the cruise line’s web site or by calling 888-NCL-CRUISE (625-2784).

While every cruise line --- indeed, every cruise ship – is different, there are certain similarities, especially within the same class of cruise lines. Although I have not yet sailed on Norwegian, I discovered a great deal about cruising preparing for, then taking, a seven day Alaska cruise during the summer of 2016 aboard Princess Cruises’ Ruby Princess.

Those discoveries are detailed in articles about counting the cost of a cruise, and on the cruise experience itself. Both articles are available by clicking the links provided.

Bon voyage!

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Photo provided by Norwegian Cruise Line
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