The Epic cruise ship is an alternative name for the Norwegian Epic, the largest cruise ship (at least until the Breakaway and Breakaway Plus are built) in the Norwegian Cruise Line fleet. In our previous article about this vessel, we covered the basics of its size and history, but we were unable to cover what is distinctive about the Norwegian Epic. The ship boasts a number of unique features, and even though it has only been operating for a few years, it has attracted a lot of attention, mostly positive. The ship has also been highly innovative in its design and entertainment offerings, pushing the cruising industry to ever higher standards.
When the Norwegian Epic took its maiden voyage in 2010, the ship was a big deal. It was at this point the third largest ship in the world, and it was vastly bigger than any other ship in the Norwegian fleet. (The Norwegian Breakaway, which went into service in 2013, and not to be confused with as-yet-unbuilt Breakaway, is almost as big as the Epic, however. And two more ships – one of which is, again, confusingly named “Breakaway” as a standalone word, with no “Norwegian” before it – scheduled to be built in the next few years will actually be slightly bigger than the Epic.) The Norwegian Epic also had a number of “firsts,” including the first solo studio cabins at sea, the first Blue Man Group show at sea, and the first (and still only) ice bar at sea. (The ice bar is, not surprisingly, made largely of ice – the bar where drinks are poured and served, the tables and chairs, and so on are all made of ice – like the ice hotels in Scandinavia.) Many of the cabins on the ship, with their curved walls and (somewhat controversial) translucent bathrooms, have designs that are unique as cruise ship accommodations. The Norwegian Epic also has an incredible water park. Apart from multiple pools and hot tubs, it has three multi-story water slides, one of which is the Epic Plunge, a 200-foot bowl slide (the only bowl slide at sea). The ship has its charms.
In addition to all the innovative features listed above, the Norwegian Epic has all the features we expect modern-day cruise ships to have. There are tons of restaurants and bars on board – more than we could reasonably list – but some of the highlights include Pizza 24/7, which will deliver a pizza to your cabin at any time, day or night, as well as the aforementioned ice bar, called SVEDKA, where passengers must wear parkas to keep warm as they sip drinks out of glasses made of ice. On board there is also an enormous casino, a bowling alley, a full-service spa, a theater for live shows, and several recreational facilities. As is the case with all of the new enormous cruise ships, there is not much you can’t do on the Norwegian Epic.
It is not hard to see why the Norwegian Epic is a well-regarded vessel. It has a lot that sets it apart from other cruise ships, but it also has all the standard features that have become commonplace in today’s industry. As of now, the cruise ship offers voyages in both the Mediterranean (late spring through early autumn) and the Caribbean (late autumn through early spring), so if you are interested in visiting either place, consider taking your voyage with the Norwegian Epic.