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GoofyontheHiSeas

Trip Report [5/25/19] Ruby Princess 7 day round trip Seattle.

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This was a last-minute trip with myself and my two young adult daughters.

We booked it only two weeks prior as we got a great price that we could not pass up.

This was our fourth trip to Alaska therefore we did a lot of DIY excursions on our own.

We have previously been Anan Creek for bears, seen whales bubble feeding in Juneau and taken the train in Skagway.

 

  • 5/25 Seattle

  • 5/26 Day at Sea

  • 5/27 Juneau

  • 5/28 Skagway

  • 5/29 Glacier Bay

  • 5/30 Ketchikan

  • 5/31 Victoria

  • 6/1 Seattle

 

We flew out of Los Angeles on Saturday morning landing in Seattle in about 10:30 and able to get to the port by 11:00.

Boarding was very smooth and we were on board within a half an hour.

It started raining as soon as we boarded the ship and fortunately for us it was the only rain that we experienced our entire trip.

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By the time we reached Port Angeles the rain had stopped and got a glimpse of the mountains of Olympic National Park.

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Our first night was spent attending Stephen Schwartz’s Magic to Do show exclusively produced for Princess Cruise.

Both of my daughters are very musical and love Stephen Schwartz's music the show to be disjointed and would

have been much better have they just done seems from each of his musicals.

 

The next day was a sea day so we slept in and enjoyed a buffet breakfast. In the morning they had a lecture on

30,000 years of art history in 45 minutes which was quite interesting. Following that we went to Princess’ pub lunch which we enjoyed.

 

Bangers and Mash

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Fish and Chips

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Bread and Butter Pudding

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Later that afternoon we went to our first trivia contest. It turned out that the three of us were actually pretty good

at trivia. We wound up attending most afternoon trivia and won a total of four times. We got to be known as “that family”.

That night was formality and enjoy the very nice meal. After that we attended the evening show with impersonations and

comedy of Michael Wilson. He was one of the highlights of the cruise.

 

The next morning we woke to the beauty of the Alaska archipelago during our approach to Juneau.

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We arrived in Juneau around 10:30 in the morning and luckily we were the first ship in port that day.

Since it was memorial day and there are four ship scheduled to arrive in Juneau that day we got off the

ship rather quickly and took a taxi out to Mendenhall glacier to beat the crowds. It was a beautiful day

with the temperatures in the mid-60’s.

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We had only taken one prior trip out to mendenhall in our previous trips to Alaska. I had always wanted

to take the hike out to Nugget falls but never had time to do that. The trail from the visitors center is

2 miles round trip. It is a well maintained path that is fairly level and can be done in around an hour.

The scenery along the way is quite spectacular.

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As the sound of the falls gets louder you are treated to the true magnificence of this glacial waterfall.

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One of the best features of this waterfall is that you can walk right up next to the falls to get the full experience.

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From the extended shoreline you have a great vantage of Mendenhall Glacier.

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We returned to the ship for an afternoon of shipboard activities. Sailaway was around 10:30pm and

as you can see the sun had just set.

h_hTYBL1uXmnes-6DUsFRCR93XcKVhrbIcisiaKRgLfqgSFGLB8dMTgq3klZ3N8v8RRPl6cangA2UWm8tA2tNM97AxCcEL6HTPH07TZV5vQMac1cEYkmS8725LFSQt2x1wZyMO2X

 

We awoke the next morning in Skagway. It was again in the low to mid-60’s but the wind was blowing

15-20mph so it felt colder. Before the cruise I had signed up for a free NPS Klondike gold rush walking

tour. I was about 45 mins and very informative.

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After this I had researched a short walk from the cruise ship to Yakutania Point. The trail started

just at the end of the airport maybe 15 minute walk from where our ship was docked. It started

with crossing a bridge across the Skagway river.

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Trail was mostly level with some spots where you had to climb over some rocks.

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Once you arrive at the point you would never know that you were a mere half a mile from the cruise ships.

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Once back on the ship we headed to the Piazza where they brought out a bunch of 5 week old sled dog puppies.

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The next day was by far our best day as we were to be visiting Glacier Bay. We got up early and bundled

up and headed to the Promenade deck. I prefer to be closer to the water to experience the glaciers

instead of being up high. The mountains were still full of snow as we entered the bay unlike when

we had visited in late July.

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Then we arrived at the main event, Margerie Glacier. On our previous trips to Alaska we had

heard glaciers calf and saw a small splash in the distance but we never experienced what we saw today.

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We then sailed back out to enter Johns Hopkins channel where we could glimpse this glacier.

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And then on to Lamplugh Glacier nicknamed the blue glacier.

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And the mountains above.

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The next morning we arrived in Ketchikan and had the best weather of our trip. Temperatures

were in the low 70’s and shorts and sunblock were the attire for the day.

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Again there were four ships in port this day and the crowds on Creek St were enormous

so we took off on foot up Married Man’s Trail to escape the crowds.

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We then meandered along Ketchikan Creek to the Deer Mountain Hatchery and Totem Heritage

Center which were both closed since it was early.

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Since we were leaving at 1:30pm we headed back to the ship for lunch and sail away.

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We had almost 24 hours until we made our mandatory stop in Victoria BC. We decided to

take the short 20 minute walk into town and were rewarded by sunset over the Olympic peninsula.

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Victoria was beautiful at sundown including the Parliament building and Empress Hotel.

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It was back to the ship and packing up for our departure in Seattle in the morning. We used the

Seattle Port Valet service which was great. Put our bags outside our final night and did not see

them until arriving in LA. Disembarkation was a breeze the next morning. We caught a cab to

Pikes Place for a few hours and then caught the train to the airport.

 

Thoughts about the ship. I was somewhat skeptical about Princess’ Medallion Internet service

especially traveling north to Alaska. It actually performed far beyond my expectations. There

were a few dead spots but it was fast enough to keep connected with home. The ship itself was

in great shape. We were familiar with the layout since we had been on its sister ship the Emerald

Princess before. Most of the shows were good and there was always something to do if we were

not outside enjoying the views.

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Posted (edited)
30 minutes ago, GoofyontheHiSeas said:

We flew out of Los Angeles on Saturday morning landing in Seattle in about 10:30 and able to get to the port by 11:00.

Boarding was very smooth and we were on board within a half an hour.

 

Nice report!  Would love to know how the heck you were able to arrive at SeaTac at 10:30, get off the plane, get your bags and get to Pier 91 by 11:00.  Heck, it's a 40-60 minute drive from the a/p to the pier normally! Or did you go by helicopter?   :classic_biggrin:

 

Tom

Edited by Pierlesscruisers

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Thanks for the review! I especially liked the DIY excursions you did...for our Alaskan cruise in August we are interested in setting off by our own and exploring away from a large group.  

 

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Thanks for this review! I especially appreciated the short treks in Juneau, Skagway and Ketchikan. I too, have been to these places before and done several Princess excursions. I am looking forward to taking some short hikes to see some local places, off the beaten path. I think I will be following your footsteps!

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1 hour ago, Pierlesscruisers said:

 

Nice report!  Would love to know how the heck you were able to arrive at SeaTac at 10:30, get off the plane, get your bags and get to Pier 91 by 11:00.  Heck, it's a 40-60 minute drive from the a/p to the pier normally! Or did you go by helicopter?   :classic_biggrin:

 

Tom

Thank you Tom

We probably landed around 10:15am and bags were waiting for us once we got downstairs. Lyft was waiting when we walked to the parking lot. Traffic was nonexistent since it was Saturday of Memorial Day weekend. The drive was no more that 30 mins. 

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3 minutes ago, GoofyontheHiSeas said:

Thank you Tom

We probably landed around 10:15am and bags were waiting for us once we got downstairs. Lyft was waiting when we walked to the parking lot. Traffic was nonexistent since it was Saturday of Memorial Day weekend. The drive was no more that 30 mins. 

 

Obviously you've been leading a clean life! 🙂

 

Tom

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 Nice review, thank you!  We leave next week for our first trip to Alaska 

on the Coral!

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We had this cruise booked and needed to cancel at the last minute so I'm so pleased to see these beautiful pics.  I completely forgot to follow you on the Ruby Bridgecam (what was I thinking?), but friends who were on her the week before had identical weather.  Crew onboard tell me that most of their cruises so far have been perfect weather.  Lucky for us the prices are way down for insides for what looks like the entire month of June (I've not seen pricing this low before) so we're headed out on the 29th (4th of July cruise, which I can't believe isn't fully sold out).  When Alaska is this beautiful it just does something to your soul.  I think we all become Alaskans.

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Great trip report and pictures. Thanks for sharing.

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Great report and loved the pics! What camera/lens were you using? I have a DSLR but not sure which lenses to bring or just a smaller camera in general! (I know there are lots of boards/posts about it but thats alot of digging work and I like the looks of your pictures lol)

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1 hour ago, aac1623 said:

Great report and loved the pics! What camera/lens were you using? I have a DSLR but not sure which lenses to bring or just a smaller camera in general! (I know there are lots of boards/posts about it but thats alot of digging work and I like the looks of your pictures lol)

I use a Nikon D4 with the full range of lens (14-24,24-70,70-200). I love wide angle shots and the telephoto for glacier calving shots. I was selective off the ship so I would not be weighted down. Bring the best camera you have because you will be disappointed if you don't. 

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I really enjoyed your review.  The pictures were beautiful.

We have been there twice and planning a third cruise.

You trip bring back very pleasant memories.  

 

You mentioned the Seattle Port Valet service which was great and convenient.

In Ft.Lauderdale, Princess offers EZ Check which we used several times.

We used Delta Airlines.

I’m wondering weather this service be similar in Seattle?

Was the Settle Port Valet service offered by Princess? What was the cost?

What airline did you use?  Not all airlines participate in the program.

The reason I’m asking is we will be sailing out of Seattle this September, 2019.

John

 

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35 minutes ago, John99 said:

I really enjoyed your review.  The pictures were beautiful.

We have been there twice and planning a third cruise.

You trip bring back very pleasant memories.  

 

 

You mentioned the Seattle Port Valet service which was great and convenient.

In Ft.Lauderdale, Princess offers EZ Check which we used several times.

We used Delta Airlines.

I’m wondering weather this service be similar in Seattle?

Was the Settle Port Valet service offered by Princess? What was the cost?

What airline did you use?  Not all airlines participate in the program.

The reason I’m asking is we will be sailing out of Seattle this September, 2019.

John

 

 

Thank you for the kind comments John. I have not used EZ Check by Princess but I assume it works the same way. It is offered by the Port of Seattle free of charge. Here is the link with all of the information. We received the form on I believe the second night of our cruise to be returned by Day 4 or 5. 

Seattle Port Valet

 

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Thank you so much for sharing the excellent review and spectacular pictures.  Sounds like you had a great time.   

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Thanks for the information on Seattle Port Valet.

The web site states “luggage free” & “complimentary”.  I understand FREE.

Check in “early” at the ship’s Guest Service.

Sign up and obtain a board pass.

You can even track your bags.  Nice feature.

Yes, Delta Airlines (7 airlines participate) does participate in this program.

This program is very similar to EZ Check.  The only difference is Princess charges for this service.

The info you can obtain on Cruise Critic is very useful.  I’m always learning.

John

 

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Thank you for sharing your beautiful pictures and the review of your cruise.  We will be on the Ruby in July with the same itinerary as you and your review was very helpful in our planning.  

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On 6/5/2019 at 10:03 PM, GoofyontheHiSeas said:

 

 

This was a last-minute trip with myself and my two young adult daughters.

We booked it only two weeks prior as we got a great price that we could not pass up.

This was our fourth trip to Alaska therefore we did a lot of DIY excursions on our own.

We have previously been Anan Creek for bears, seen whales bubble feeding in Juneau and taken the train in Skagway.

 

  • 5/25 Seattle

  • 5/26 Day at Sea

  • 5/27 Juneau

  • 5/28 Skagway

  • 5/29 Glacier Bay

  • 5/30 Ketchikan

  • 5/31 Victoria

  • 6/1 Seattle

 

We flew out of Los Angeles on Saturday morning landing in Seattle in about 10:30 and able to get to the port by 11:00.

Boarding was very smooth and we were on board within a half an hour.

It started raining as soon as we boarded the ship and fortunately for us it was the only rain that we experienced our entire trip.

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By the time we reached Port Angeles the rain had stopped and got a glimpse of the mountains of Olympic National Park.

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Our first night was spent attending Stephen Schwartz’s Magic to Do show exclusively produced for Princess Cruise.

Both of my daughters are very musical and love Stephen Schwartz's music the show to be disjointed and would

have been much better have they just done seems from each of his musicals.

 

The next day was a sea day so we slept in and enjoyed a buffet breakfast. In the morning they had a lecture on

30,000 years of art history in 45 minutes which was quite interesting. Following that we went to Princess’ pub lunch which we enjoyed.

 

Bangers and Mash

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Fish and Chips

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Bread and Butter Pudding

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Later that afternoon we went to our first trivia contest. It turned out that the three of us were actually pretty good

at trivia. We wound up attending most afternoon trivia and won a total of four times. We got to be known as “that family”.

That night was formality and enjoy the very nice meal. After that we attended the evening show with impersonations and

comedy of Michael Wilson. He was one of the highlights of the cruise.

 

The next morning we woke to the beauty of the Alaska archipelago during our approach to Juneau.

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We arrived in Juneau around 10:30 in the morning and luckily we were the first ship in port that day.

Since it was memorial day and there are four ship scheduled to arrive in Juneau that day we got off the

ship rather quickly and took a taxi out to Mendenhall glacier to beat the crowds. It was a beautiful day

with the temperatures in the mid-60’s.

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We had only taken one prior trip out to mendenhall in our previous trips to Alaska. I had always wanted

to take the hike out to Nugget falls but never had time to do that. The trail from the visitors center is

2 miles round trip. It is a well maintained path that is fairly level and can be done in around an hour.

The scenery along the way is quite spectacular.

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As the sound of the falls gets louder you are treated to the true magnificence of this glacial waterfall.

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One of the best features of this waterfall is that you can walk right up next to the falls to get the full experience.

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From the extended shoreline you have a great vantage of Mendenhall Glacier.

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We returned to the ship for an afternoon of shipboard activities. Sailaway was around 10:30pm and

as you can see the sun had just set.

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We awoke the next morning in Skagway. It was again in the low to mid-60’s but the wind was blowing

15-20mph so it felt colder. Before the cruise I had signed up for a free NPS Klondike gold rush walking

tour. I was about 45 mins and very informative.

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YB3t6c8_5WhDIA1L8OXpa58ANrZeJGHwfWAU8KFhzPi0t3QicvEE6CMtFkCiB4_suHFggV6Ke28eH_MfPJU1bEAAwQDeEbGaUatUPM5LgQ1uKMYwPk29p26IfH5SnPWE51WNuXnK

 

After this I had researched a short walk from the cruise ship to Yakutania Point. The trail started

just at the end of the airport maybe 15 minute walk from where our ship was docked. It started

with crossing a bridge across the Skagway river.

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Trail was mostly level with some spots where you had to climb over some rocks.

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Once you arrive at the point you would never know that you were a mere half a mile from the cruise ships.

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Once back on the ship we headed to the Piazza where they brought out a bunch of 5 week old sled dog puppies.

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The next day was by far our best day as we were to be visiting Glacier Bay. We got up early and bundled

up and headed to the Promenade deck. I prefer to be closer to the water to experience the glaciers

instead of being up high. The mountains were still full of snow as we entered the bay unlike when

we had visited in late July.

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Then we arrived at the main event, Margerie Glacier. On our previous trips to Alaska we had

heard glaciers calf and saw a small splash in the distance but we never experienced what we saw today.

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We then sailed back out to enter Johns Hopkins channel where we could glimpse this glacier.

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And then on to Lamplugh Glacier nicknamed the blue glacier.

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And the mountains above.

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The next morning we arrived in Ketchikan and had the best weather of our trip. Temperatures

were in the low 70’s and shorts and sunblock were the attire for the day.

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Again there were four ships in port this day and the crowds on Creek St were enormous

so we took off on foot up Married Man’s Trail to escape the crowds.

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We then meandered along Ketchikan Creek to the Deer Mountain Hatchery and Totem Heritage

Center which were both closed since it was early.

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Since we were leaving at 1:30pm we headed back to the ship for lunch and sail away.

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We had almost 24 hours until we made our mandatory stop in Victoria BC. We decided to

take the short 20 minute walk into town and were rewarded by sunset over the Olympic peninsula.

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Victoria was beautiful at sundown including the Parliament building and Empress Hotel.

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It was back to the ship and packing up for our departure in Seattle in the morning. We used the

Seattle Port Valet service which was great. Put our bags outside our final night and did not see

them until arriving in LA. Disembarkation was a breeze the next morning. We caught a cab to

Pikes Place for a few hours and then caught the train to the airport.

 

Thoughts about the ship. I was somewhat skeptical about Princess’ Medallion Internet service

especially traveling north to Alaska. It actually performed far beyond my expectations. There

were a few dead spots but it was fast enough to keep connected with home. The ship itself was

in great shape. We were familiar with the layout since we had been on its sister ship the Emerald

Princess before. Most of the shows were good and there was always something to do if we were

not outside enjoying the views.

Thanks for review.  We sail soon!  Slightly different ....we go to icy strait instead of skagway.  Anyway, how did you get around in victoria BC?  We were debating between hop on hop off trolley and bike rentals.

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Stunning pictures, thank you for sharing. 

 

When you went to the promenade deck for the day of glaciers. Glacier Bay... Were you able to see these glaciers right from the ship or was this a separate excursion you took.

 

If so what excursion, if you don't mind me asking. 

 

Thank you

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18 minutes ago, Melli56566 said:

Thanks for review.  We sail soon!  Slightly different ....we go to icy strait instead of skagway.  Anyway, how did you get around in victoria BC?  We were debating between hop on hop off trolley and bike rentals.

Our ship was late arriving so we did not get off until 8pm. Since the ship left at midnight we just walked into the main harbor area. A nice 20 minute walk. 

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33 minutes ago, greatestvalue said:

Stunning pictures, thank you for sharing. 

 

When you went to the promenade deck for the day of glaciers. Glacier Bay... Were you able to see these glaciers right from the ship or was this a separate excursion you took.

 

If so what excursion, if you don't mind me asking. 

 

Thank you

Thank you very much. While the ship is in Glacier Bay you will remain on the ship. There are no excursions while there. The ship is approximately 500 yds away from the glacier. You can view it from the top decks or on the promenade decks. The ship will also rotate to give each side of the ship time to view from balconies. 

I have many other glacier pictures here Alaska 2019 

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Thanks for a great review!

Do you happen to remember how much the taxi to Mendenhall cost?

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