Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community

zammis

Members
  • Content Count

    42
  • Joined

About zammis

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Maryland
  • Interests
    hiking snorkeling
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Holland America, Celebrity, Princess
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    caribbean

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

  1. Final thoughts: - I really want to explore doing an RV rental trip out of Anchorage. - The Seward part, in terms of wildlife viewing, was absolutely the best. If you're pondering one of the Kenai Fjords boat tours and you have the time, do it! -Coral Princess was a great ship for scenic viewing, the food was pretty good and the entertainment was also pretty good for our needs. (We all like to hole up and read or play board games usually, so this was "stepping out" for us!) - I really wish we had been able to dock in Ketchikan- Mom did her Duck Tour on the walker, but really couldn't do much else. Being able to drive the scooter form the dock would have really improved her options. - I wish we had spent the night in Vancouver, despite the cost, and had flights out the next day. We were all a bit thrashed getting home and here I am, a week later, just starting to feel normal again. It would have cost more but it would have made getting back into the swing of things much much easier. - If you aren't a wildlife photographer, or you don't have a great camera or a lot of practice with your cellphone, you might miss out on just taking in the experience. I wanted some good pics, but there were times I was much happier to not try and just take it all in. It was less frustrating! If I were going to go again, I'd be sorely tempted to do a back to back just to make things easier with flights. Or maybe a week up, week there for DIY, then a different cruise back? (you know, if I'm dreaming). Thanks for reading, hope this was helpful and entertaining!
  2. Day 11- Vancouver and flights home Disembarkation went very smoothly. We had just enough time for a dining room breakfast (HSB had an early flight back to Salt Lake City, so we did a last meal with her. ) Service was.. less than great, but obviously we're getting booted off so I'm biased. Once off with our bags, I go looking for the baggage service- apparently they aren't doing that this year and I didn't get the memo- and most people at the port had no clue either. Oh well! Luckily, I remembered about the Pan Pacific Bell Desk- we were able to check the mountain of stuff there, and keep it to small day bags to explore Vancouver a bit. By this time it's 11am, and its bucketing rain. We need to back at the bell desk by 2:45pm to pick up our bags, otherwise we'll get charged another fee, so our timeline is set. We decide against the Sun Yat Sen Chinese Garden in buckets of rain, and instead grab a cab over to Granville Island Market. Mom and I love markets, and this one was crowded but not a disappointment. It was a great choice for a rainy day- we got to eat a wonderful lunch, some yummy baked goods (including gluten free options), shop for some artisan things, and generally poke around. Mom got this cinnamon thing the size of a dinner plate; if you are familiar with Publix "flying saucers", they make ginormous ones at Granville Island Market. Himself bought a small photograph of two otters that spoke to us, and I got some stickers and additional goodies to give as gifts. We finished up at the market around 1:45pm, grabbed a taxi to the steam clock to get a taste of Gastown, then walked from there back to the Pan Pacific in off and on rain. I would have liked more time but it wasn't to be. Back at the hotel there's just enough time for a round of bathrooms and Starbucks before grabbing our bags and getting two taxis to YVR- one with people and a scooter and one with STUFF (and one person). As a note- they have these handicapped accessible cabs in Vancouver where the scooter or wheelchair can just roll in the back and be secured with belts. This made it VERY easy with Mom as we didn't have to disassemble the scooter! (and having the scooter for the market was a MUST. ) Getting to the airport was an adventure- there was apparently an accident on the main road there, so we had to detour though tons of traffic- felt right at home (Metro DC). Luckily we had plenty of time until our 7:30pm flight- which turned out to be two hours late taking off- we were on a weather hold and stuck on the plane. Making our connection through SFO was interesting, but the good news is we all made it back to Dulles on the same flight, in one piece and with all our bags. Yay!!
  3. Day 10 SEA DAY Wow we were all ready for a lazy day! HImself and I slept in and had a brunch at the buffet. I checked out the "Outlet sale" but nothing I was interested in. Then another wine tasting (the $9.95 one) scheduled for two pm. I guess I'm lucky to have a "less refined" palate because I enjoyed these wines more, and based on the price point, I knew they'd be in the ten-12 dollar range per bottle for when we got home. Score! We had a fun couple sit with us from Oregon who were really into wine, so all in all good conversation. (These headwaiters were also less chatty, though I decided this time to just taste when I was ready and they could catch up with me!) Feeling a little happy we went back to the cabin to get things packed- they requested bags BEFORE dinner, so I at least wanted to get the main bag handled. We enjoyed some scenic whale watching from Mom's mini-suite balcony going through the strait between Vancouver Island and the mainland. It was gorgeous scenery (again), but what they say about it getting better the farther north you go is true. Also our weather luck had definitely run out as it was blustery and somewhat rainy. I'm still never going to get tired of seeing whales RIGHT THERE though. Followed that up with finishing off some wine we'd brought and having some hot tub time in the indoor pool area. Then just enough time to change for our last dining room dinner. I was a little surprised they still do a baked Alaska parade, but they did and we had some and it was pretty good! (No gluten free version but I ate around the cake anyway) Not too many pics today- fighting off those end-of-cruise blues! Tomorrow- Vancouver and flight home!
  4. rkacruiser: yeah I am ok being a dancing queen with others, but not by myself! BTW- totally forgot to mention the pod of whales that followed along side the ship sailing away from Juneau- we had whales riding 100ft from us- we could watch them breaching, diving etc FROM THE DINING ROOM. Just amazing! Of course by that point my phone was back in the room charging, but it was an amazing dinner show. Day 9- Ketchikan As we are on Coral Princess. we got the short straw today and had to tender into Ketchikan. Mom left the scooter behind (they were very good about parking it near the re-boarding area though so it was was easily retrieved for her when she got back. ) She and BF did the Duck Tour in Ketchikan and had fun. HSB was all about seeing bears, so she went out to the wildlife preserve and indeed saw the. She said it was something like a whale watch in that they had observers feeding the tour guide info as to where the bears were. Himself and I had fun wandering Ketchikan- wegot over to Creek Street, did some shopping and visited Dolly's House (the shower curtain was pretty funny... hint, those aren't flowers!) We had not realized quite how far a walk Creek Street was from where the tenders docked, but luckily we found the free downtown shuttle map and, once we reached the water end of Creek Street, were easily able to catch a ride up the hill to the Totem Heritage Center. The creek by the center was FULL of salmon- one fisherman hooked a good-sized one from the bridge, but eventually lost it. I swear the creek was more fish than water, there were so many of them. As we finally entered the Totem Heritage Center, we lucked out as a private tour was just finishing and one of the docents at the center was giving an interesting talk on the story of one of the poles right as you come in. We spent about an hour here but it was interesting. Nice clean bathrooms too! We took the shuttle back downtown and got on the line at 3pm for the tenders- we made it just in time as the line started to get really long while we were loading. It ended up that due to construction traffic we were supposed to leave at 4:30 and it ended up being 5:30 due to delays. We watched the "On the Bayou" show that night at the early, before dinner time and we all really enjoyed it. Much higher production values than I'm used to from a cruise ship show, that's for sure! And some moments were really over-the-top fun. Another seafood dinner and we were ready to have a day OFF tomorrow!
  5. Day 8- Juneau Another early start today. Himself and I got to Juneau Car Rental at 8 am to pick up our (good condition, definitely used) Chevy minivan. We took a quick test drive up to the whale statue since others were not down yet. We got back to Dock B and took a little bit to load up since we had to take the scooter apart since the back seats don't move. Then people and a walker were loaded. It was a fast, less than five minutes drive to the AJ Gastineau mine gate. Prior to the trip, my mother REALLY wanted to do some gold panning. I wasn't as thrilled but found this option and it worked for all of us, including being able to tour the underground mine and that it was wheelchair accessible. We had to call in for clearance on the one way road. They didn't have a vehicle that could transport the scooter up the hill to the mine entrance, however they provided a wheelchair up top and the ramps were fairly easy to do with the wheelchair. Then out of the mine and back down to the store for a brief talk on the mill and we were released to do gold panning. We put all our findings in one jar for Mom. Then at 11:30 we reloaded the van and after checking in on food needs headed right for Mendenhall Glacier. The visitors center was very crowded but we were able to hear a couple of ranger talks and see the movie. The weather was clear and there were great views of the glacier and Nugget Falls. Decided to skip the Nugget Falls hike due to time and not sure if scooter could do it. (Later on, the scooter blew a fuse so it was a good decision. ) We went out to Photo Point walk first. All paved., though a little rough and one part on the back part of the loop has a step, so you'll want to go out on the right and return the same way, Easy with the scooter. Next we did the Steep Creek trail. Getting down the end closest to the visitor center was tricky with loose gravel, but doable with the scooter. There was another entrance from the lower parking lot that would avoid that stretch, then if you come back by the parking lot it would all be paved. Boardwalk was fine with the scooter. Saw a porcupine in a tree, tons of salmon and a black bear! Loaded up and headed back to drop everyone at the ship by 3. Then dropped the car and walked back about 15 mins. Turned out we were 15 mins early for 3:30 all aboard. We would have liked more time in Juneau to see town but Mom was very happy with the gold mine. She wanted to stay and pan more. If we didn't care about Mendenhall the mine would have been fine with us staying longer. Finally got some hot tub Time for sail away. Had yummy formal night dinner. Tried to find some music and enjoyed Symphonee again for a bit and tried the Abba hour but no one was dancing and I didn't want to put on a show. (I like cheesy dancing but not on my own!) Tomorrow- Ketchikan, where Himself and I have no plans, one of us has a bear tour and the other two are doing the Duck Tour.
  6. Day 7- Skagway We had an early launch and met Dyea Dave (the man himself!) for our tour into the Yukon. I wished I had thought of or brought more questions as he had entertaining stories and answers. Weather was wet, heavy and gloomy on way up. We took mom's walker instead of the scooter as we were on a sprinter-type bus and it wouldn't accommodate the scooter. We had what we thought was an initial potty stop at the Skagway train station, not realizing this was also our chance to change our reservation into tickets. (Be sure to get actual TICKETS as the email doesn't count! ) We stopped early for lunch at Carcross and I picked up some special maple syrup aged in a whiskey barrel. (So good!) Then another few minutes drive to Emerald Lake with lots of scenery to gawk at. The weather cleared slightly and we got some Emerald Lake photos, but the color would be better when sunny. Coming back it started to clear up some and was intensely windy. We had a few scenic stops along the way back to Fraser, where we would catch the afternoon train back to Skagway. We had planned on seeing more sled dogs at Tutshi when we came up, but they were closed on the way up. On the way back, Dave worked his magic and we got to hold and pet puppies and do a brief visit; no rides today but we really just wanted puppy time!! We got to Fraser about an hour early for the train, but there was at least a bathroom stop there so that helped make the time go by. We didn't pick up on the fact that we needed to turn in our train confirmation for actual tickets back in Skagway- oops!- but Dave did some talking and we were able to get aboard. We were ok but be aware. (Apparently there's normally a reminder for this in the Dyea Dave email but we didn't see it. ) Sun came out for the train ride down and it was stunning. Dave picked us up at end of train ride and took Mom and friend back to ship. We stopped of for HSB to try to find a Microsoft surface cord (no luck) and we grabbed Bavarian nuts and ice cream and did a little shopping before heading back to the ship. Think we saw Dyea Dave's car too! I knew that in the Azores there's a rock that all the ships paint a marker on, or used to? Anyway, Skagway has this too, it was fun to look at old and new tags for the various ships. We enjoyed Symphonee again after dinner, but not for too late as Juneau is another early day.
  7. Day 6- Glacier Bay Day Glad the photos are working now! And yes, scale was a problem the whole trip... pictures really seem dinky compared to the reality. I mean you are looking at ice the size of 10 story buildings. but from a good ways off. Anyways- Glacier Bay!! Amazing scenery!! Definitely a highlight and would recommend especially if you are not doing a land tour. I know there's some argument about not doing it since only certain ships and itineraries go there- I can't compare to like a Tracy Arm or Sawyer Glacier or College Fjord- I just know we were very glad to do this experience. We started with the enjoyable ranger talk at 10 am, was a packed house and a great introduction to our day at Glacier Bay. The rangers definitely try to personalize these talks with their experiences so its not just a canned speech. We also got to look at maps and really get oriented to what we were going to see. It helped since we didn't catch all the narration to have at least some baseline knowledge. Afterwards I helped my mother shop on the pool deck at the Princess tables for an hour and even found some stuff I wanted to buy. (She wasn't interested in the ranger tables.) We had lunch outside bundled up- fresh but not freezing!, and watched the amazing scenery leading up to Margerie Glacier. Water was so still! Overall we saw Margerie glacier, Grand Pacific, John's Hopkins and Lamplugh. Treated to tremendous calving at Margerie, a HUGE chunk calved right in front of us. I'm not fast enough for pictures but it was an inspiring thing. Lamplugh and Johns Hopkins also breathtaking. We couldn't get very close to Johns Hopkins due to seals calving but it was all so pretty we truly didn't mind. Mom and I enjoyed warm beverages form the cart that wandered the Promenade deck, followed by teatime at the International Cafe with a pot of vanilla tea. I really loved the IC on Coral this time. ( I tried it on Caribbean Princess a few years back but didn't try the food.) It's such a perfect setup when you want a quick bite after a tour or glacier viewing. They also always had labeled GF options vs the buffet, which didn't label things and the one time I tried for a dessert the GF option was gone. It was a beautiful sunny day, though cool. Not much wildlife but we did get to see some sealions on the way out at South Marble island. (those brown lumps on the white marshmallow bits) Dinner was Italian night. Had my pre-ordered gluten free saltimbocca which was very good. Homemade limoncello available for dessert for $3 a shot in a super-cure souvenir glass. After dinner saw party band Symphonee do 50s and 60s hits before bed. On to our first port at Skagway tomorrow!
  8. Day 5- Hubbard Glacier As one must, we did laundry. There was a line on our deck with two ladies ahead taking up all 5 machines- they had been on one of the land tours and said this was their second or third time doing laundry. We were able to only use two machines (think apartment sized. ) 3 dollars wash, 3 dollars dry per cycle. You buy tokens with your ship card. The dryer did a stellar job for a laundromat machine. We had some good hang out time on Caribe aft waiting for laundry. Lunch was Alfredo's pizza at Sabatinis: I was able to order a gluten free pizza off the menu, no problems. At 2pm was the Maitre d wine tasting with Himself. First headwaiter/sommelier talked waaaaay too much (um, we're here to DRINK WINE MAN) but I learned about bottle shapes and wine which was cool. Good wines (but honestly I liked the $9.95 wines better later in the cruise. ) Much glacier viewing in the all-afternoon run up to Hubbard Glacier- scale is really hard to determine since all the huge scenery messes with your ability to estimate distance. AnitaLatte: I didn't go on the small boat- my mom was supposed to go but then didn't feel up for it. Mom's friend and my high school buddy went and were impressed. They got to see a harbor seal colony as well as the glacier. The one pic with the bow flag has that small boat in it, but you have to zoom waaaay in. The conditions were amazing- very calm water, sun- we were apparently able to get much closer in the ship that is customary. The small boat was maybe a couple of hundred yards off? I included one of HSB's pics so you can see. We were maybe 3/4 mile off? Hubbard Glacier is so big I really didn't feel bad about it. We got to see several small calving events here. We had our first dinner with our regular wait staff. They were able to get me a gluten free meal including french onion soup. Yum! It was formal night. Got some free champagne. The show was "Encore" which was not my thing really but good performers and production values
  9. Day 4- AWCC and getting on Coral Princess! We luckily had a relaxing morning til our 10 am pickup from Alaska shuttle. Our driver took one look at the mountain of bags, scooter and walker and had to run back for his trailer. It only took ten minutes for him to return though and we were fine. It was about two hours up to Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center(AWCC). I didn't realize how close the AWCC is to the Seward highway turnoff for Whittier. Lovely scenery on way up under mixed clouds and sun. Got to see brown bears in the water since it's hot for them. Also porcupine, black bears, moose (who were hiding in the barn sick, poor things), elk, caribou and reindeer. They also have coyote, foxes and wolves but they were all hiding. They have a Big gift shop that Mom enjoyed. Around 1 we headed out for Whittier. The tunnel was interesting and looong. It was definitely cooler and mistier on the Whittier side of the mountains. Embarkation was very smooth. Almost NO line to check in and a few minutes line for security. Our cabins were ready so they took the wheelchair assist and mom right to the cabin. Our interior cabin was snug and clean, but I did my saniwipes wipedown anyway. We were given a 5:15 pm dinnertime but I was weak from no lunch so we hit the buffet for a light plate. Then wandered the ship. I'd heard good things about Coral Princess- it really never felt crowded, even on glacier viewing or sea days. Plenty of outdoor space to get to, and the Promenade deck was really comfortable for viewing, we spent a lot of time there. Dinner was good and we split a bottle of albarino. (Splitting a bottle of wine among five of us worked out so well, we did it pretty much every night.) Had gravlax and mussels and flourless chocolate cake. Then came the muster drill. (I'll be singing"safety" ala the Love Boat theme in my sleep probably.) Then I helped Mom unpack and played a board game we brought before bed.
  10. Day 3- Take it Easy! A leisurely wake up with cooked breakfast of eggs and bacon (last one we have to cook for a while!) As we were pretty much right next door, we visited the Seward museum and library. Well set up and informative. Mom had some things on hold at a gift shop in South Harbor, so we walked from mile 0 of Iditarod along the water, maybe 20 minutes? Mom used her scooter and had no problems- it was a mostly flat paved path. We ate lunch at Ray's on the Waterfront. I had the seafood Provencal salad which was yummy good (pesto white wine dressing- I really wanted to lick the plate!) On the spur of the moment, called Seaveys Iditaride since Mom wanted to see puppies. They were able to pick us up right at the restaurant. Mom used her cane. Himself took the scooter back to the VRBO. (He said he got it up to quite a speed!) The tour was fun but definitely more walking. Paths are thick gravel so would be hard with a wheelchair or scooter. You transfer to a dog cart for the ride. There were outhouse bathrooms. Small gift shop. Mom got a magnet. We got to hold 3 month and 3 week old puppies after our ride. Just good fun. They dropped us right back at our VRBO with no hassle. Dinner was take out from Attic Pie and Seward Brewing company. Hardest part: Having to repack for embarkation on Coral Princess tomorrow!! (Sorry about the photos- for some reason inserting from URL isn't working for me!)
  11. Day 2- An amazing day in Kenai Fjords! Got up and dressed about 8. Started out with trying to figure out coffeepot (check power strips) and locks ( manual knob vs fancy number entry) We took Resurrection taxi to South harbor for Major Marine for their 7.5 hr tour. (We booked on 2018 Black Friday special for 40 percent off) At the last minute there was a mechanical and our tour was cancelled. We were offered a full refund or 50 percent off if we could cruise tomorrow. As the weather was perfect, sunny and clear and mild, we went next door to Kenai Fjords Tours and jumped on their version of the all day tour, which was similar except instead of a buffet on the boat we'd get lunch on the boat and dinner at Fox Island with a buffet. It did cost more (no discount), but we really did not want to miss out on the weather. https://pix.sfly.com/y-hj_W -Normally all these motion-sickness items might be needed- inside the Major Marine office.... https://pix.sfly.com/690DgZ It was truly amazing. 5 minutes out we saw a friendly otter just hanging out in the bay. (He may be paid in fish or something. It was really too easy!) https://pix.sfly.com/6MSSGx Then there was a humpback whale, endless sea birds including cormorants and puffins. (I found it did help to have gone to the Alaska Sealife center yesterday to better be able to pick them out.) More humpback whales, plus a pod of orcas, Holgate glacier where there were 3 black bears on the shoreline. Harbor seal, sealions. Everything but a moose basically. https://pix.sfly.com/ST_-ca We were fed lunch a chicken wrap with chips and granola bars. (They made me a salad since I'm gluten free) They had drinks separately. With a deal for 8.95 you got a travel mug with unlimited refills of whatever ( non alcoholic). Glacier ice from Holgate was offered for cocktails, I had a glacier-rita which was fun, ran about $8. https://pix.sfly.com/tuOQ92 We also had dinner at Fox Island. It was supposed to be "all you can eat" but they ran out of food. We did all get a plate but if you know you are hungry you should probably grab it on that first go-around. Drinks were lemonade, coffee and tea and water and were included. (At this point, we'd seen so much cool stuff we honestly didn't care much about the food!) Dessert was fresh baked choc chip cookies on the way back on the boat. Captain Steven was very good, really took his time and was able to follow the wildlife and understood what we wanted to see. Accessibility-Mom did a wheelchair transfer to the boat. There was a reserved handicapped bathroom which she didn't need. It was locked with a key code so not just anyone could use it. There were only stairs to the top but we stayed on the first level and we were fine. Aft deck offered benches and great views. They stored her walker and she got around with a cane. If you have mobility issues, reach out to them ahead of time to see if they can handle your situation. They told us no walker since the Coast Guard "doesn't like wheels" but they may be able to handle a transfer to a seat from a wheelchair ok. The seats on the ends have metal arm rests but these can be removed by crew so you can slide in more easily. (We didn't know this til the end. ) It was an amazing day out. Afterwards we had a small Safeway run for further breakfast stuff just me and Himself. As the free shuttle stopped running at 7 and we had trouble hunting up a cab, a very nice lady visiting from Anchorage helped us out. She had a cousin visiting from New Zealand and they ran us down to our VRBO . Felt like authentic Alaska. (Complete with a back seat covered in sled dog hair!)
  12. Day 0 and 1 3 am in Anchorage isn't pretty. Our flight were uneventful. We had some turbulence on the cross country Charlotte to Seattle leg. I was able to sleep 2 to 3 hrs on first long leg then about 2 hrs on the Seattle to Anchorage leg. Apparently most flights to and from the lower 48 come in at strange hours. What was brutal for us was jumping off at 3 am then going right to the train at 5:45am. Why? Our outbound flights were generously covered award points by high school buddy (HSB) and cost her a whopping eleven dollars in fees. She had tried to get us in the day before but there weren't any award seats left. So brutal timeline it was. Luckily, the Starbucks across from the Alaska Airlines ticket counter is open 24 hrs and had egg sandwiches too. We grabbed a table and did our best to wakeup and be functional. "Eleven dollars" was our rallying cry. We then took an Uber to the Anchorage train depot at 5:30. The Alaska train wants you there an hour before departure at 6:45 am. My mother, her BF and HSB all pulled up to the curb in their respective rides. We then had some hugs before dropping bags and heading inside to get our actual tickets. The train station had a coffee shop with bagels and snacks, bathrooms and a small giftshop. We booked Goldstar service based on a recommendation from a client. Said client said to "not even worry about the extra cost" and she was right! We ended up in the A car, a two level dome car right at the front of the train. While the farther back cars all had wheelchair ramp,we transferred to our car using a few steps. If mom couldn't have done that we would probably have been moved or there would have been a ramp option. Once in the car there was an elevator or stairs to reach our assigned seats in the dome car. Views were absolutely amazing. It was a beautiful sunny day and even our cell phones could capture a bit if it. https://pix.sfly.com/cTii_V https://pix.sfly.com/PeznXf Cooked breakfast and two alcoholic beverages (think mimosas, hot chocolate and coffees) plus unlimited tea, coffee and soda were included. There was also a snack bar bistro for an extra charge. The difference in ticket price between regular and Gold Star was about $100 per person but it was a very special experience for us. We arrived in Seward at about 11:30 am. The Alaska Bag lady got our bags to take to our accommodation via VRBO. They wouldn't let us drop our bags early so it was lucky there was a service we could use instead of dragging our bags around for, the day. We then got the free shuttle to downtown. There's only one ada compliant vehicle which we initially waited 30 mins for but instead took a regular shuttle with the scooter in back, and mom transferred a few steps to a seat. Got off in downtown and shopped a bit, walking down to the Alaska Sea life center. Since we couldn't check in to VRBO until 4, we went ahead and visited the sealife center. It took us about 90 mins. We loved the sealions and the puffins in the aviary. We were surprised how close to the birds we could get! Otters were viewed from above, got to see a cute baby otter playing with toys. View from the Sealife Center: https://pix.sfly.com/XeC-aF Weather was sunny and mild all day. Had late lunch/ early supper at Seward Brewing Company. Had the cider and burger and food seemed pretty good despite lukewarm reviews It was what my jetlagged self needed. Himself and I hit the wall once we got to the VRBO. They were still getting it ready til 5 but we waited in living room. Once we had full access I took a nap that lasted 5 hours. Then got up for long enough to get ready for bed. Saw moon on water before crashing. Our VRBO little house: https://pix.sfly.com/J8Z8RW
  13. rkacruiser- VRBO is Vacation Rentals by Owner, similar to an Air BnB- we chose that as it was way more cost effective for our group than hotel rooms.
  14. OK- once of the things that drove me a little mad was trying to figure out WHAT TO PACK. Here's my packing list with notations as to what I actually wore or used: your preferences or experience might vary! weather on our trip was mostly sunny, with 3 rainy days. Glacier days ranged from 40s and breezy to 60s, sunny and warm. I don't change outfits 3 times a day- instead I tend to swap out warmth layers or scarves to "freshen up" for evening. Notations: Not used: Crossed out Used little: italics Some things that weren't used or needed, like the travel insurance, I've left alone because I would still bring them anyway! Carry On Bag: Medications for 12 days purse, Travel wallet with CASH docs: passport with tips cash, drivers license, Car insurance info (for rental car), Credit cards, boarding pass for initial flights, med insurance card,copies of passport and drivers license in Evernote., RX pics in Evernote. (Evernote is organization software, available for Android, Windows and Apple. I use it for everything. ) Printed items: travel insurance, email from travel agent with OBC, receipts for Dyea Dave, Alaska Bag Lady, Major Marine tours, aj mine reservation, Juneau car rental, FishAlaska/Transfer to Whittier, (Really didn't need any of these on paper, but it made me feel better to have. Could easily have done these in Evernote as well. ) 2 copies of itinerary in page protectors with magnets. (one for each cabin) Coffee travel mug Columbia rain jacket- bought via Cabela's bargain cave a few years ago for a trip to Ireland, about $35, worth every penny. hoodie and light scarf (2) really only needed one light scarf sunglasses one change of clothes in a ziploc or packing cube (socks, undies, shirt, pants?), small baggie of wet wipes pepto tablets chewable, digestive enzymes kind bars and snacks for plane, nuts, peanut butter crackers- bring half next time! Even gluten-free me didn't need that much! (most of a gallon size zip loc) Truvia packets (two handfuls) ear plugs and eye mask, foot hammock for plane, travel neck pillow, black fleece wrap- (used all of these outbound, none coming back) Phone and charger kindle and usb cable (use with phone charger) memory card adapter and tool for microsd (had plenty of room for photos, no need to transfer until I got home. ) cruise outlet extender- not quite right for our needs, next time would bring USB hub. Contact lens case and solution (in 311 bag)- to put contacts in upon arrival in ANC. (I fly with glasses on generally) glasses case (wear glasses on flight) navy cardigan- wore a LOT more than I thought! (its an ultralight layer) binoculars jewelry- really only wore two pieces for formal nights. Main checked Bag: Toiletries: shampoo, conditioner, body wash, deodorant, contact lens stuff, glasses, Korean sheet masks (brought 6 used 2) and skin care, essential oils (could have brought less), sunscreen (used a lot in Seward, could have brought more spray stuff) and bug spray (barely used, towlettes next time), travel makeup bag, dry shampoo Pharmacy: Bonine, ginger chews, aleve, benedryl, tums, pepto tablets, cold meds, digestzen, , breathe oil, motioneze oil, , band aids, gauze and tape, neosporin, chapstick- luckily no one caught cold this time, and Himself's scopalomine patches worked very well. Food and drink: creamer, truvia packets,Ginger tea bags, boldo tea, coffee packets (brought Satbucks VIA packets incase coffee was bad- it was fine for me, so didn't need them. ) selection of ziplocs- used two for bathing suit and 311 bag on way back running gloves, hats (ball cap and rain hat and knit hat), one heavy scarf- really only used ball cap and knit hat. Didn't need the rain hat. fleece- Columbia- wore many days, bought via JCPENNEY sale earlier this year. Layered with rain jacket for a "coat" effect. Undergarments: undies x 11, 2 bras- could have packed less, did self-laundry day 5. Tops, at least 8- 4 short sleeve tees, 2 long sleeve, 3 3/4 sleeve- needed more long sleeve but got by. had two tech-type long sleeve and several 3/4 sleeve in tech fabric. (Tech fabric easy to wash and dry in a sink) silk long johns- used bottoms on glacier day, did not use the top. Great for warmth and not too hot for anything else. pajamas, lightweight pants 2-3 blue lands end,(wear on plane), columbia hiking pants, burgundy jeans, reg jeans, shorts (lived in jeans mainly, the columbia pants were also very comfortable like leggings. Never felt the need for shorts. Knit pants didn't feel right since wind went through them) socks x 7-8- (used all my thicker socks on cold days. could have brought 4-5 pair thicker wool-blend socks. ) lands end mocs- wore 3 times including on planes. Water- resistant and slip-on, so good all-around walking shoe. ahnu hiking boots, wool blend socks x 2- wore 5-6 days. Hard to give them a break as they were warm and comfortable. Got on sale via Sierra Trading Post (now sierra) stateroom comfort items in a packing cube: magnet hooks, clothesline, laundry soap, clips, lanyards/id holders for cruise cards, wrinkle spray, pod detergent x 4 (used 2 per load in self-serve laundry) , tide pen, highlighters (didn't need the sink wash stuff since we used the ship laundry one day) flip flops, bathing suit, sarong- used twice for hot tub time! leggings 1 pr capri length (brought these for warmth under dresses and didn't wear them) dinner clothes- three dresses, one skirt and two tops, dinner shoes, evening bag, black cardigan-(wore two out of three dresses for formal nights. Otherwise wore day clothes. Clothing police not in evidence. ) I used several packing cubes to organize the above, both Eagle Creek and Bagail off Amazon. Both worked fine. In Seward: Bought 4 bottles of WINE at Safeway and each carried one bottle for free in carryon for stateroom consumption. We never took them to the dining room and in fact two bottles came home with us- we mostly ordered a bottle to share in dining room for dinner for 5 of us, each taking a turn at buying. Liquid Hand soap (two?)- forgot to buy, used bar soap in cabin, didn't perish. Ginger ale or beer non-alcoholic for Himself, he opted to buy each soda on board. (he drinks maybe one soda a day.)
  15. Got back and am working on catching up with life as well as getting trip report stuff ready. astrosfan1: We used Alaska Shuttle for our transfer from Seward to Whittier. Very professional, nice bus and we got to see the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center as well. sbell1: we booked our flights around February for this trip coming home on United. Our outbound flights were handled by HSB with points on American the prior November. I used Kayak to keep an eye on prices coming back. Next post, packing list!
×
×
  • Create New...