The Cheshire asked in TravelCruise Travel · 3 months ago

Alaskan Cruise Suggestions?

We cruise often in the Caribbean but are looking towards Alaska this time and could use a bit of help. 

Favorite cruise line and or ship? Why? (will probably do a balcony room)

We are thinking of July but other window suggestions would be welcome. 

Thanks!

7 Answers

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  • 2 months ago

    We cruised to Alaska on Norwegian Cruise Lines.  Hubby and done this before, with his first wife before she passed, so he already knew what to do.  You call, which ever cruise line you want, ask about pricing and after you make your decision (and pay) then they will give you access to sign up for excursions and speciality restaurants before your arrival date.  If you wait, to book any one these, until you board the ship....then your choices may be minimal.  We booked a room with a balcony and loved it.  Most cruise ships stop, in Alaska, at Ketchikan, Juneau and Skagway. You will also need a Passport because most stop in Vancouver, Canada and you won't be able to go ashore without it.

    I've watched TV a lot and I've never heard anything about Norwegian Cruise Lines having any mechanical problems or anything else.  Just be ware............every other store, when you pull into a port, is a jewelry store..........they seem to be everywhere.  I Ketchikan, we went on an excursion to an old cannery that served fresh crab....yummy and as much as you want.....and then we took a sea plane back to the ship.  In Juneau, we didn't sign up for an excursions because you're only there for 6-hours.  At Skagway, we bordered a train which went up into the hills and into White Horse Canada...........the Border Patrol comes onto the train and checks for Passports.  The route, the train went, was the same route the old time miners went up into the Klondike.  We paid, for both of these excursions when we paid for our cruise and a couple of the 'specialty' restaurants.

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  • 3 months ago

    I did an Alaska cruise on the Celebrity Millennium, it's a smaller ship so it can go into Ice Strait.  July would be fine, we went in May and even then, the temps ran from 38-70 degrees.  I've also done mostly Caribbean cruises, the Alaska cruise was super pricey, but totally worth it for a once in a lifetime experience.  I strongly recommend adding a few days so you can go to Denali.  We also hiked on Matanuska glacier, which was very cool.  I also went snorkeling in Juneau.  Not quite the same as snorkeling in the Caribbean, but I can say I snorkeled in Alaska. 

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  • 3 months ago

    July is probably the best time. We did that last year, and the weather was perfect. Friends who went in May had to be bundled up against the cold the whole time. A lot depends on who is cruising. We reviewed all the cruise lines and decided on Carnival because they have the best programs for children, and we had a 7 year old with us. Carnival gets a bad reputation because of the spring break cruisers, but on the Alaska cruise, it was families, not a young drunken crowd. A balcony is a must- we saw so much, including whales and the sea planes in Juneau from our balcony. Do some of the excursions- Skagway is just a small, quaint town with not enough to occupy a whole day. In Juneau, there's a sky car that goes up right from the port to a nature reserve, there are fabulous restaurants with fresh Alaskan crab and salmon, and lots to look at. Don't get too confused with "inside" and "outside" cruises- it's all spectacular!

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  • 3 months ago

    Princess and Holland America have the most permits to enter Glacier Bay - highly recommend finding an itinerary that includes it.  They also have been sailing to Alaska the longest. 

    You have to decide whether you want to do a northern or southern one way route, adding a land package that includes Denali or a round trip out of Seattle or Vancouver

    With Alaska, pick the itinerary first, then the cruise line - honestly, all the ships will be very similar in amenities. 

    Mrsjvb is correct that the Alaskan cruise season is very short and July is a good time to go.  May and September will be cheaper but the former may see limited excursions, colder weather and limited access to locations due to ice and the latter is less daylight and more rain as well as limited excursions due to ice thaw.

    Our last cruise was on the HAL Eurodam, RT out of Seattle and it was an awesome trip - than again, we are 4-star Mariners and like HAL

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  • pmt853
    Lv 7
    3 months ago

    We did a land tour and cruise with Princess a couple of years ago, they were excellent from start to finish.

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  • Mrsjvb
    Lv 7
    3 months ago

    Princess has the most permits for Glacier Bay, which many consider to be THE spot in Alaska.  July is the best time, right in the middle of the ( very short) season

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  • Anonymous
    3 months ago

    I took an Alaskan cruise on Norwegian a few years ago and really enjoyed it.  Ports included Juneau, Skagway and a few other places.  My understanding is that it's really crowded in the summer.  We went in May and got some good whale watching in.  I believe the salmon runs are later in the season and a good time to see eagles and bears.

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