Best Large Cruise: Royal Caribbean
Courtesy of;;Royal Caribbean
- Ship: Ovation of the Seas
- Duration: 7 nights
- Itinerary: Alaska Inside Passage, Juneau, Skagway, Victoria
If youre looking for a cruise to Alaska with all the theme-park-like attractions, then the Ovation of the Seas will not disappoint. Built in 2016, Ovation is currently ranked as one of the 10 largest cruise ships in the world with onboard features like a skydiving simulator, a cocktail bar tended by robots, aerial performances in the theater, and the North Star, a moving observation pod with surreal views. The first two days of the voyage are spent at sea so theres plenty of time to explore the ship and try different activities. Or, dine at specialty restaurants like Chops Grille, Royal Caribbeans iconic steakhouse; Wonderland, an eclectic array of dishes, or Giovannis table, a favorite Italian restaurant.;
Alaskan Cruises Are Back And Demand Is High
Ships are once again cruising the Last Frontier.
Norwegian Cruise Line
Despite being home to major cities with all the modern conveniences one can imagine, in many respects Alaska remains the last frontier boasting massive tracts of wild open spaces, ancient forests, soaring mountains and salmon-filled rivers that create exceptionally rugged, untamed beauty.
Passengers see Alaska up close and personal.
Norwegian Cruise Line
Filled with icy fjords that tower over the Pacific Ocean while snowy peaks stretch towards the horizon, Alaska feels boundless on board Norwegian Jewel and Norwegian Sun, yet also incredibly intimate as you watch eagles nesting along coastal forests. Cruises like Norwegian let you explore all sides of Alaska the way locals see it, up close and personal. Head deeper into the frozen wilderness on and experience the thrill of a 30 ton whale gliding under your catamaran.
Expect to see animals galore while touring Alaska.
State of Alaska Jocelyn Pride
Sea lions are a common sight for tourists.
Viking ships have all the amenities one can imagine.
Embark on an adventure through the Alaskan wilderness.
Savor the majestic beauty of Alaska on a Celebrity Cruise.
Kayaking is a popular Alaskan tourist activity.
State of Alaska Reinhard Pantke
Experience a variety of off-shore activities.
State of Alaska Jocelyn Pride
You Will Have Some Early Mornings And Late Nights
On Caribbean cruises, you might be used to staying up late to enjoy the nightlife around the ship. When sailing in Alaska, you can certainly stay out all night, but we wouldnt recommend it. Many ports of call will have early arrival times, and;you are going to want to get off the ship as soon as possible. You will also want to be up early as you sail by fjords and glaciers; this experience shouldnt be missed. With the sun out until 10pm during peak season, or the chances of seeing the Northern Lights at certain times of year, your mornings and nights will be packed with memorable experiences.
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What To Expect On An Alaskan Cruise
Wondering what it is like to cruise to Alaska? Whether you have plans to travel way up north this season or you are starting to plan for next year, be warned that this is not
Wondering what it is like to cruise to Alaska? Whether you have plans to travel way up north this season or you are starting to plan for next year, be warned that this is not your ordinary cruise. For those in the early stages of the planning process, we have put together this top ten list of what to expect on an Alaskan cruise. These tips will get you prepared for what will certainly be a memorable vacation.
What Are The Best Months For Wildlife & Activities
Spotting wildlife is always unpredictable in Alaska, but your best bet of getting pics of wildlife ashore is probably late May and early June, when mothers and their calves or cubs tend to be out and about. One exception: If you want to do a bear-watching shore excursion, prime bear season is not until late June or early July.
Denali: If you want to do a land tour that includes the national park, dont come during the May shoulder season. Denali National Park doesnt open up until early June.
Want to fish ashore? Fishing is good during any monththere are just different species of salmon that peak as the weeks go by.
Summer berry-picking on shore is best late in August or early September.
If you want to see fall foliage ashore, wait until the first week of September. It remains good through the third week of September.
Hate mosquitoes? If youre doing a land tour, come during either shoulder season
See a full calendar of Alaskas natural events.
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Gulf Of Alaska Cruises
Cruises that skirt;across;the Gulf of Alaska are sometimes one-way itineraries routed either south from beautiful Anchorage or;north from Seattle or Vancouver. These cover more territory and also lend themselves to pre- or post-cruise land excursions because passengers embark or disembark in Anchorage, from which you can get to nearly any part of;Alaska. Cross-Gulf cruises include many Inside Passage ports, but might also stop at Seward, Valdez, College Fjord, Hubbard Glacier, Kodiak Island or other areas.
Many of these are classic one-way cruises that start or end in Whittier, the seaport gateway about 65 miles southeast of Anchorage, or in Seward, a bit farther south. One-way itineraries mean one-way air fare for two cities, which can be more expensive than round-trip fares, unless your;cruise line offers a deal.
That said, you get to see more of Alaska on these;cruises. In addition to stopping at ports beyond the Inside Passage, Gulf of Alaska cruises; offer passengers access to land-tour destinations such as Anchorage, Denali National Park, Talkeetna , Fairbanks, Homer, Seward, the Kenai Peninsula;– plus you get to travel on the Alaska Railroad.;
Get Ready For Your First Time On An Alaskan Cruise
Hooray!;Youre about to go on an Alaskan Cruise! Want to know what its really like? Ill fill you in on all the details about my 7-day Alaskan Cruise aboard the Ruby Princess.;
Ive been hearing about Alaskan cruises for years but always assumed they were for old people and all you really did was sail around and look at snow-capped mountains. I could not have been more wrong!
We originally wanted to discover Alaska but did a lot of research and found Alaska very hard to get around if you wanted to see multiple places. So we decided on a cruise as our best bet to be able to see several different areas of Alaska in one trip.
Fun Fact: The City of Juneau, which is also the capital of Alaska, can only be accessed by boat or plane. There are no roads leading in or out of Juneau crazy huh?!?
We loved our cruise so much, we are already planning a second one with the kids. So sit back and let me tell you everything you need to know about your first time on an Alaskan Cruise!
Dont forget to follow me on to get more information on your Alaskan Cruise!
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The 8 Best Alaska Cruises Of 2021
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“Airport transfers, shore excursions, meals, wine and spirits, and park admission is bundled into the price.”
Best for Adventure: Alaskan Dream Cruises See Rates
“Excursions focus on local culture such as totem carvings, folk dances, and other Tlingit cultural presentations.”
An Interior Cabin/room On Alaskan Cruise
- Darkness in the room around Summer Solstice:; During this time it can be light outside for up to 20 hrs/day. Interior cabins may provide the best nights sleep youve ever had!;
- The room is always pitch dark when the light is off. Theres no morning light to wake up with or outdoor ship lights through the window to guide you to the bathroom in the middle of the night.; Bring an alarm and a nightlight!;
- You have to go to upper or open decks for views.;
If choosing an Interior, check the deck map to find a cabin with quick access to an open deck perhaps just down the hall or up/down a flight of stairs. With this, you can have a cheap ; stateroom yet still be on deck in 2-3 minutes if they announce something phenomenal over the ships intercom. Thats the best of both worlds
For Interesting Info about Summer Solstice, check the bottom of this article.
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Which Ship Is Right For Your Alaska Cruise
Update: Royal Caribbean is committed to delivering vacations that are as safe as they are memorable. We are thrilled to welcome our guests to experience the memorable vacations we are known for once again, starting summer 2021. As you plan your next trip with your loved ones, well be here with inspiration in all forms whenever you need it.
Royal Caribbean visits top spots in Alaska each summer, including the Inside Passage, Juneau, Icy Strait Point and Skagway.
There is a lot of ground to cover when visiting Alaska, from its vast, rugged terrain to the many animals that call it home. Planning a vacation to the 49th state may seem like a daunting task. But with two Royal Caribbean ships sailing to the Last Frontier in 2021 and departing from convenient cities in the Pacific Northwestthis must-see destination has never been more within reach. Your big decision is choosing which ship is right for you!
Whether youre in it for the views, activities, destinations or an extended experience, every ship offers a bit of everything, but each has its perks:
Quantum of the Seas is packed with family adventures for the young and young at heart.
The Family Vacation Quantum of the Seas
Explore more of the family adventures that await when you sail aboard Quantumhere. ;
The Nonstop Views Ovation of the Seas
Sneak a peek at the views from Ovationhere.
When sailing on Serenade of the Seas, its as much about the destinations as it is the journey.
Best Things To See While Cruising In Alaska
Alaskan cruises are known for their beautiful, mountainous scenery. Cruises travel past the Kenai Peninsula, where travelers can enjoy the stunning views of Kachemak Bay and the volcanic peaks of Cook Inlet. Cruisers can also partake in an excursion in Alaskas “Golden Heart City,” where you can hike around a six-million-acre wildland provided by Denali National Park. This is also where North America’s tallest peak, Denali, resides. The Park also plays host exciting wildlife that can be observed by travelers. Bears, moose, wolves, caribou, and other animals have been found when hiking through the park. Many ships also visit destinations like Glacier Bay National Park and Prince William Sound, where guests watch glaciers calve into the ocean in breathtaking geologic displays.
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You Need To Pack More
We are chronic over-packers regardless of where we are traveling, but even those who pride themselves on begin able to travel with;just a carry-on, may want to think twice. Given the constantly fluctuating weather, you will want to pack extra clothes of varying degrees of warmth, think layers, as well as multi-purpose jackets and boots.;While Alaskan cruises tend to be more casual, you will still want some nicer clothes for the nights;around the ship. Needless to say, you will want to review our Alaskan Packing Guide for tips on what to bring.
What Is There To Do On The Cruise Ship
First, you have hot tubs. And one of my favorite activities was to alternate between the hot tubs and relaxing with a glass of wine while reading a book.
Second, they do have a great kids club for all ages that really keep the kids busy if you do decide to bring them along.
And Third, there are TONS of shows and plays and games and planned activities for everyone. Not to mention the casino if you want to win your cruise fare back!
Each day at sea also had a newly released movie play on the big screen on the top deck, and stewards passed around hot chocolate and blankets to watch movies under the stars.
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Best Cruises For Extended Trips To Alaska
If you want to cruise Alaska but also see some of the interior and enjoy a stay in a lodge or hotel, go for a cruise-tour package from either Holland America or Princess Cruises. Both have fantastic itineraries that take passengers not only to the Inside Passage, but also Anchorage, Denali National Park, the Yukon, Kenai Peninsula, Talkeetna and Fairbanks. Princess even owns a handful of its own lodges.
What Is An Alaskan Cruise Really Like
Its not like what Mike and I experienced, no word of a lie. I cant lie to you and pretend that our trip was the norm. We had prepared for rainy, chilly weather. We bought new raincoats off of Amazon, we bought new rubber duck shoes and we made sure that we packed umbrellas.;We had looked online, read the cruise forums and did our research. We hadnt even taken an Alaskan cruise before so we were prepared for the rainy days that were most likely going to happen on the trip.
It was sunny the entire trip.
Not one rainy day. In fact, it was quite hot when we were in Sitka, one of the hottest days they had had all year so far. We had worn layers when walking to the Sitka National Historic Park and we were in t-shirts by the time we hit the totem walk in the forest.
So first, Alaskan cruises are normally chillier and rainy than what we experienced. That doesnt really matter in my opinion because Alaskan cruises are filled with spectacular beauty. Sitka was one of the most gorgeous places I have ever been to. The National Forest was breathtaking and not to be missed.
Every port you are at on an Alaskan cruise is candy for the eyes but Juneau will steal your heart as soon as you see her. This is a sight that you will only see if you come in by air or by sea, making it a pretty special thing indeed as there are no roads into Juneau.
Now, I am sure that I missed something so please ask in the comments below and I will try to answer!
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Questions To Consider If Still Struggling With Cabin/stateroom Choice:
If youre still struggling with this choice, ask yourself these questions.; Your answers may bring clarity to your decision.; ;
- MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION:;;;WHEN am I cruising? A balcony in July is quite different from a balcony in Sept or May. For detailed info about weather/temps in each month in Alaska:;;Planning an Alaskan Cruise Choosing the Cruise Line, Itinerary & Dates
- SECOND MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION:; How important is cost in the decision?;; ;;Is cost at the top of your list of considerationsor closer to the bottom? How much weight does the cost factor receive?
- VIEWS:; Do I; want to see EVERYTHING a 360° view? Or can I accept the fact that some things are going to be on the other side of the ship and I wont see them from my Balcony ?;
- PRIVACY:; Do I prefer More view; less privacy; OR;Less view; more privacy?;
- DAYLIGHT & SLEEPING: Can I sleep with light in the room? ; Clothespins/clips on curtains will keep out SOME
- ATMOSPHERE:; How Important is the Atmosphere to my Scenery Enjoyment?; In other words, do I prefer these pristine sites alone with quiet, or surrounded by the excitement generated by people oohing and awwing?
- Am I traveling as a couple/family or part of a group of 23 who will all want to share the experience together anyway?; ;
HOWEVER.about 2 months before our cruise, we got an UPSELL offer ; We took their offer and for just a few hundred dollars more, went from Interior to Balcony.; It was a deal we just couldnt pass up!;;
Best Traditional Cruise: Princess Cruises
Courtesy of;Princess Cruises
- Ship Name: Royal Princess
- Itinerary: Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Whittier
Royal Princess is a gorgeous ship that like all Princess cruises focuses on a more traditional experience . As passengers sail through Glacier Bay or the College Fjord they can stroll around the stunning skywalk a glass walkway that overhangs the vessel or relax next to a lovely water fountain in the pool area. In the evenings, passengers catch movies under the stars. The cruise concludes in Whittier, Alaska, where most cruise lines do not visit. Although Whittier is industrial, its ideal for those extending their stay in Alaska on land. The Alaska railroad connects Whittier to Anchorage so travelers can also enjoy a scenic ride to Anchorage and hop on a connecting flight.;
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Reserve A Healthy Budget For Excursions
Day tours and excursions get you away from the crowds and into the real Alaska you came to see. But taking these tours may require some extra effortand money. After all, many of Alaska’s most dramatic sights and wildlife can be accessed only by plane or boat. Other activitieslike river rafting, glacier hiking, or dogsleddingnecessitate hiring expert guides and renting gear. Plan on one to two excursions per day, and budget $100$200 for each. If thats a little high, here are tips to see Alaska on a budget.