All the cruise line iteniraries are almost the same. One may have a little more time in one port while a different line has more time in a different port like this is NCL Sun 9 dayI would research April's weather before booking this cruise. I would also check with the excursions you are interested in and see if they are operating this early. This is really early for Alaskan cruises. I honestly don't know what to expect weather wise.
Thursday, April 19Seattle, WA4:00pm
Friday, April 20At Sea
Saturday, April 21Juneau, AK2:00pm 10:00pm
Sunday, April 22Skagway, AK7:00am 8:00pm
Monday, April 23Glacier Bay National Park, AK (Cruising)
Tuesday, April 24Icy Strait Point, AK7:00am 4:00pm
Wednesday, April 25Ketchikan, AK10:00am 7:00pm
Thursday, April 26At Sea
Friday, April 27Victoria, BC, Canada12:00pm 11:59pm
Saturday, April 28Seattle, WA8:00am
Researching Alaska Cruises for next year
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Would you lean more toward the 9 day NCL or the 7 day Princess?If they were running at the same time in May or the NCL cruise was later than the Princess, I'd lean toward the 9 day.
Same exact price no major perks for booking one over the other (onboard credit etc) I have cruised NCL before so i like "dine when you want to" deal but Princess offers that option as well.
Both ships are smaller and older and i am fine with that. Husband says he can take 14 days off so there is that part of me that wants the longer cruise but another part isnt sure about it.
You get an additional port, Icy Strait, and I've read a lot of positive comments about that port. Also you get much better port times in Juneau - 8 hours and arrive in Victoria at noon instead of 7 PM. That means you would have time for an excursion to the very lovely Buchart Gardens. The only downside on port times is arriving at Juneau at 2 PM instead of at 11 AM - the later arrival might remove some options there - but it is more than made up for by the positives. Some things you might have done in Juneau like a whale watching boat, you could do in Icy Strait. There is a lot of daylight so perhaps it doesn't limit your options that much.
The fly in the ointment is that the NCL cruise is so early as Coral pointed out.
Hi Victoria - if your husband says he can take 14 days off, why not consider HAL's 14 day itinerary which is roundtrip from Seattle? It includes several little visited ports like Homer, Kodiak, Anchorage (the city itself, not Seward or Whittier), Icy Strait Point, and Sitka - as well as the usual 'suspects' of Ketchikan, Juneau, Victoria, BC, plus Hubbard Glacier and Tracy Arm. I've done this particular itinerary three times and wouldn't hesitate to do it again. It is a wonderful trip on a smaller HAL ship (the Zaandam next year, I believe) that feels like 'home' in no time. Something to consider....I will have to look at that one. We need to add travel days to the beginning and end of our trip. Flight is long and, from what i can tell by looking at flights currently listed, will put us haveing to fly in the day before we embark and fly out the day after the ship returns. 14 days plus 2 travel days would be outside his alloted vacation time.
03-03-2013 Norwegian Star
Celebrity Solstice Alaska 8/17
Celebrity Equinox Caribbean 3/17
Celebrity Eclipse Baltic 7/16
Celebrity Millennium Alaska 5/16
Celebrity Solstice Alaska 7/15
Celebrity Infinity Iceland/Norway 7/14
Princess Grand Alaska 7/13
Holland America Westerdam Alaska 5/13
Holland America Zuiderdam Alaska 7/12
Holland America Westerdam Caribbean 3/12
Holland America Amsterdam 14 day Alaska 7/11
Celebrity Millennium Alaska 7/10
Holland America Eurodam N. Europe 6/09
Princess Golden Alaska 7/08
Celebrity Summit Alaska 7/07
Celebrity Summit Alaska 7/06
NCL Sun April 19th - 28th:
Extra port Icy Straight
Longer time in Victoria
longer time in Ketchikan
previously cruised with NCL
Early in the season (1st cruise to Alaska for the season but that could be a good thing)
Does not go through the Inside passage between Victoria and Vancouver
not as fond of the deck plans
Princess Ruby April 28th - May 5th
a little later in the season
goes through the inside passage
longer port time in Juneau
I like the deck plans of the Princess more It looks like it has more viewing decks
1 less port
short port time in Victoria
was only able to book a guaranteed room
I do not have any promotions to make one a better value. They cost about the same with the NCL slightly more expensive because of extra days.
03-03-2013 Norwegian Star