Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
shadowcx1

Bliss or Jewel?

Recommended Posts

For those of you who have taken these two ships to Alaska, which one did you prefer and why? My family is looking to book one next May but can’t decide which one to take. We have narrowed it down to Seattle round trip with Bliss and Vancouver to Seward with Jewel. Both will go to glacier bay. Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The one way north bound is the way I would go, especially if I can add a few days on the tail end. The excursions in Seward are wonderful, and if you really want to see glaciers, take a day trip by train from  Anchorage to Seward and then do the 21 Glaciers tour. I find ships like Bliss too big for Alaska, and I do nto like the Seattle roundtrips. On the round trip all you see is a tiny bit of SE Alaska, not the really good parts of the interior.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just got back from Seward to Vancouver on the Jewel and it was amazing. You will have a great time regardless of which ship you take, but personally I'd go with the Jewel trip any time.

 

Check out the itinerary route maps for each voyage on NCL's website. The Bliss goes up and back on the outside of Vancouver Island, so practically 'out at sea' for almost half the trip, and you will only spend four days, out of seven getting a taste of Alaska. Leaving from Vancouver, the Jewel takes the scenic Inside Passage, plus in addition to seeing Glacier Bay, you also go to the much bigger Hubbard Glacier. 

 

Obviously the downside will be that you will need to travel further, either at the end, or the beginning of your trip. If you have time, many people prefer to get the long flight out of the way first, and fly to Anchorage or Fairbanks, maybe take a tour on Denali, and then relax on the cruise at the end of the trip, and have a shorter flight home.

 

You mentioned your family, not sure if that means kids or teens...but you can weigh these factors into your decision. There are kids and teen's clubs /arcade/sport courts/swimming pools etc on the Jewel, but on the Bliss there are  extras such as a go kart track, waterslides, laser tag. 

 

 

Edited by Vancan123

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

4 minutes ago, Vancan123 said:

I

You mentioned your family, not sure if that means kids or teens...but you can weigh these factors into your decision. There are kids and teen's clubs /arcade/sport courts/swimming pools etc on the Jewel, but on the Bliss there are  extras such as a go kart track, waterslides, rope course, laser tag. 

 

 

There is no rope course on the Bliss

Edited by rockfsh

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, shadowcx1 said:

For those of you who have taken these two ships to Alaska, which one did you prefer and why? My family is looking to book one next May but can’t decide which one to take. We have narrowed it down to Seattle round trip with Bliss and Vancouver to Seward with Jewel. Both will go to glacier bay. Thanks.

We would prefer the Bliss because there is so much more to do and see on the ship. 

 

That being said, the better itinerary is the Jewel northbound. And if you have time, take a land tour up to Denali National Park. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, BirdTravels said:

We would prefer the Bliss because there is so much more to do and see on the ship. 

 

That being said, the better itinerary is the Jewel northbound. And if you have time, take a land tour up to Denali National Park. 

As mentioned there is no sport court, ropes or climbing wall on the Bliss. My teen nephew was kind of bored without those. Also the entertainment on the Bliss isn't family friendly. 

 

If family includes teens or children take the Jewel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have just sailed both this year in Alaska.   I as well prefer the Jewel since my priority is for Alaska and what is off the ship.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another NCL ship will be doing Alaska next year - the SUN. She will be doing 9, 10, 11 and 12 days round trips out of Seattle … in case you are unaware of it but are interested in taking longer Alaska cruise.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bliss doesn’t have a ropes course or climbing wall, but does that mean that these are available on Jewel?  I was under the impression that neither ship had these.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The lack of a sports court was the primary gap. The fact that the Bliss doesn't have the other things make that more glaring. The Jewel has that.

 

The compliment Cirque show on the Jewel should be more family friendly than any of the Bliss shows.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, bluesea777 said:

Another NCL ship will be doing Alaska next year - the SUN. She will be doing 9, 10, 11 and 12 days round trips out of Seattle … in case you are unaware of it but are interested in taking longer Alaska cruise.

 

 

Did the 10 day on the Sun in 2015, would take that over the Bliss.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
53 minutes ago, CruiseWithHolidayTours said:

Are you sure about that? The online itinerary picture shows going up on the outside, but coming back on the inside. I sure hope the picture is correct and it doesn't sail the outside going and coming...

Bliss.png

The true Inside is to the north of Victoria. But either way a one way cruise is much better because you get the same ports, plus Hubbard glacier and Seward. and it always goes between mainland Canada and Victoria Island. I've done it three times so I am sure about what I am telling you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, zqvol said:

The true Inside is to the north of Victoria. But either way a one way cruise is much better because you get the same ports, plus Hubbard glacier and Seward. and it always goes between mainland Canada and Victoria Island. I've done it three times so I am sure about what I am telling you.

 

Vancouver Island

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, pbenjamin said:

 

Vancouver Island

Thanks for the correction.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The description of the INSIDE PASSAGE leaves a bit to be desired.

Commonly the Inside Passage is the narrow waterway between Vancouver Island and the Canada B.C. Mainland.

But in Alaska there is also a inside passage way sheltered from the Pacific Ocean - Ketchikan - Juneau - Skagway -

Icy Strait Point.

The cruises scheduled out of Seattle cruise the Pacific Ocean side of Vancouver Island and the cruises that sail

out of Vancouver to Seward will be out in the Pacific Ocean visiting the Hubbard glacier cruising to Seward.

Since the Alaska cruises are only in the peak summer months bad seas and weather are not usually encountered

at least not the type where the rug is pulled out from the bottom of the sea floor.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Way back in 2002 I sailed on the Sky RT out of Seattle and went on the inside of the island. We arrived at the most scenic part - Johnstone Strait in the middle of the night and awoke the next morning just above the island. Coming back, we went on the outside of the island to arrive at Victoria. In 2003 we repeated the cruise and it went outside the island both ways. In 2012 we were on the Pearl and did outside both directions. I also remember back in 02 we rarely saw any other ships except in port. The passage that separates the  island from the mainland is quite narrow (see the Seymore Narrows) and ships can only pass through one at a time and really need to time it with the tides. The more ships doing one ways out of Vancouver BC as well as more ships in AK the more the bottleneck - therefore it is a given that the Seattle RT cruises will use the ocean side of the island. On the Bliss you will reach the protected waters on Tuesday morning sailing into Juneau and will stay in these passages until late PM on Friday when you leave Ketchikan for Victoria.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The deciding factor for me is air fare. If you are an American it is cheaper to fly to Seattle than to Vancouver. So, depending on the size of your party, this could add up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/21/2019 at 4:42 PM, Vancan123 said:

I just got back from Seward to Vancouver on the Jewel and it was amazing. You will have a great time regardless of which ship you take, but personally I'd go with the Jewel trip any time.

 

Check out the itinerary route maps for each voyage on NCL's website. The Bliss goes up and back on the outside of Vancouver Island, so practically 'out at sea' for almost half the trip, and you will only spend four days, out of seven getting a taste of Alaska. Leaving from Vancouver, the Jewel takes the scenic Inside Passage, plus in addition to seeing Glacier Bay, you also go to the much bigger Hubbard Glacier. 

 

Obviously the downside will be that you will need to travel further, either at the end, or the beginning of your trip. If you have time, many people prefer to get the long flight out of the way first, and fly to Anchorage or Fairbanks, maybe take a tour on Denali, and then relax on the cruise at the end of the trip, and have a shorter flight home.

 

You mentioned your family, not sure if that means kids or teens...but you can weigh these factors into your decision. There are kids and teen's clubs /arcade/sport courts/swimming pools etc on the Jewel, but on the Bliss there are  extras such as a go kart track, waterslides, laser tag. 

 

 

 

Well said!  I wish I had read your post earlier, when I was trying to decide which one to choose.  The thing that kept me confused was the logistics of Seward, Anchorage, etc.  Flights were better priced when booking a RT.  So I got around that hurdle by booking a b2b, Vancouver-Seward-Vancouver.  I would add, when NCL offers free or reduced airfare, jump on it, because then you don’t have to worry about having to find the best flights, etc.  I will do that next time.  For now, b2b is the way to go for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...