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Akina13

Best Ship for Alaska?

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Hey all 🙂

I was just wondering what you all thought was the best ship for Alaska - I was looking at Ovation (we will be going with another family that has 2 small children) I have been on Harmony and loved it as well as Navigator. I have also been on Vision, and while I liked it, I want something bigger.

 

Thanks in advance!

 

Kim

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Thanks, I will look at those as well - -  I was only looking at Royal ships lol.

I have only been on Royal and Carnival and definitely didn't want to do Carnival

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You mention that you want something bigger than Vision, so maybe those of us saying to try another cruise line for Alaska are wasting our figurative breath. 😉 But as much as I love the big, beautiful RCCL ships, for me they're better suited for other itineraries.

 

I have done Alaska with Celebrity and Princess and loved them both. 

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11 minutes ago, la_croisiere_s'amuse said:

You mention that you want something bigger than Vision, so maybe those of us saying to try another cruise line for Alaska are wasting our figurative breath. 😉 But as much as I love the big, beautiful RCCL ships, for me they're better suited for other itineraries.

 

I have done Alaska with Celebrity and Princess and loved them both. 

 You aren’t wasting your breath :) I just find I got bored the last few days on a 7 day cruise on the smaller ships. I feel like I could  “explore” more on the bigger ships. That being said I am going on enchantment in 2 weeks haha. But it’s a 5 day. Navigator  size was nice.  

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The best ship to Alaska will be the one with the best itinerary. As much as I’m dying to sail on Ovation, I wouldn’t sail on her in Alaska. She has one of the worst itineraries. 

 

If there’s one thing that I learned after sailing in Alaska is that this region is all about the destinations and very little about the ship. When I think of our sailing to Alaska, the vast majority of my memories are from what I did off the ship and very little about what I did aboard the ship.  

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The Ovation is too large to get to the better places.  The best places to go to are Ketchikan, Skagway, Juneau and Sitka (in that order) and Glacier Bay excellent.

 

I would suggest Celebrity Solstice or Celebrity Eclipse great ship great itinerary.  Princess is my second choice.

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10 minutes ago, Cruisegirl6 said:

The Ovation is too large to get to the better places.  The best places to go to are Ketchikan, Skagway, Juneau and Sitka (in that order) and Glacier Bay excellent.

 

I would suggest Celebrity Solstice or Celebrity Eclipse great ship great itinerary.  Princess is my second choice.

Thank you! That does really help 🙂 I know we want to make sure to see whales and the northern lights for sure. I know virtually nothing about the best itineraries so this is a great help! 

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Ovation without a doubt.  That said itinerary matters which has the best?  But if you are going there for the ship.  Ovation.

 

jc

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26 minutes ago, steveru621 said:

Radiance OTS.

+1

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Coral Princess.

 

It will go where other ships cannot. The mega ships cannot get close to the glaciers in Glacier Bay.

 

Do Princess, and if possible add a land portion first. Then Whittier to Vancouver.

 

Steve

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Akina13-  Remember, your on a RC board here people will give you suggestions for a RC ship, which is normal here.  I did alot of research, was going to Alaska next year and those were the two ships I would of chosen, only, I decided to put it off for another year because my other half will retire in 2021 and we won't have a time restraint and then be able to do a land tour pre cruise too.

 

If you want to see the northern lights, its best to go as much into September as you can, but there is no predicting the solar activity, just keep that in mind.  Fairbanks is probably the best place to see it, followed by Denali National Park, anchorage than Juneau.

 

In Seaward you can see alot of whales also and the best time to see more whales is during early may and the first part of June (but can be seen through September).  You can find more whales in Icy Strait Point, Juneau, Sitka and Ketchikan.

 

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12 hours ago, Cruisegirl6 said:

The Ovation is too large to get to the better places.  The best places to go to are Ketchikan, Skagway, Juneau and Sitka (in that order) and Glacier Bay excellent.

 

I would suggest Celebrity Solstice or Celebrity Eclipse great ship great itinerary.  Princess is my second choice.

I'm taking Ovation next year. She's going to Skagway, Juneau and Glacier Bay (itinerary change).

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11 hours ago, xpcdoojk said:

Ovation without a doubt.  That said itinerary matters which has the best?  But if you are going there for the ship.  Ovation.

 

jc

I like both to be great if I'm spending that kind of money, which I am. I chose Ovation. I think the itinerary is great. Skagway, Juneau, Galcier Bay, Victoria BC. Plus I get to spend a couple days in Seattle. It's a win for me. 

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Itinerary is what sells it for me.  If you are going to spend the $$ to get to Alaska...go for all you can fit in.  

 

Radiance does one way between Vancouver and Seward, mostly inland waterway.  Much more to see, more ports of call.  Ovation and Serenade does round trip (Seattle and Vancouver).  

 

Best of all worlds...B2B on Radiance...Seward to Vancouver (or vice versa).   I am booked again for fourth trip to Alaska next year. Loved each one.  🙂 

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Thanks all! Appreciate all the feedback and suggestions. Helps in early planning of this cruise 🙂

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I now know why the Ovation wasn't allowed to go to lets say Ketchikan...because Ketchikan was limiting how many cruise ship passengers arrive in a day, I gather now it is on the list to visit there.

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15 hours ago, Akina13 said:

I know we want to make sure to see whales and the northern lights for sure.

 

You will probably see whales. Northern lights...probably not. They appear at night and I don't believe it gets dark enough to see them in Alaska in the summer.

 

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I think the TWO70 venue on Ovation of the Seas is an awesome asset for an Alaskan cruise. It will be a gorgeous view from a very comfortable spot.

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2 hours ago, Cruisegirl6 said:

I now know why the Ovation wasn't allowed to go to lets say Ketchikan...because Ketchikan was limiting how many cruise ship passengers arrive in a day, I gather now it is on the list to visit there.

Ovation doesn't visit Ketchikan....the only change was adding glacier bay

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Posted (edited)
18 hours ago, Akina13 said:

🙂I was just wondering what you all thought was the best ship for Alaska - I want something bigger.

 

 

Hands down, in my humble opinion, is Ovation #1 ship . However, also one of the worst itineraries of all the cruise lines if you are looking to experience as much of Alaska as possible.

So that's the question... What's the goal? Do you want to see Alaska, or mostly enjoy the ship?

 

16 hours ago, JupiterTwo said:

It will go where other ships cannot. The mega ships cannot get close to the glaciers in Glacier Bay.

 

The 170,000 ton NCL Bliss, NCL Joy and Ovation are mega ships and all visit/have visited Glacier bay and/or Hubbard. Here's Ovation at Hubbard Glacier this past May

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2661933-ovation-may-13-24-live-in-alaska-wlots-of-photos/page/14/?tab=comments#comment-57500442

 

17 hours ago, Tapi said:

The best ship to Alaska will be the one with the best itinerary. As much as I’m dying to sail on Ovation, I wouldn’t sail on her in Alaska. She has one of the worst itineraries. 

 

If there’s one thing that I learned after sailing in Alaska is that this region is all about the destinations and very little about the ship. When I think of our sailing to Alaska, the vast majority of my memories are from what I did off the ship and very little about what I did aboard the ship.  

 

This above is the very best post in this thread for those who truly wish to see/do more vs. the ship experience.

 

17 hours ago, Cruisegirl6 said:

The Ovation is too large to get to the better places.

 

Sailed Ovation this past May to Icy Strait, Sitka, Juneau, Skagway, Hubbard and Tracy Arm, so this sentence is  not true. If RCL wanted to book more ports, they definitely could. RCL just doesn't want to for whatever reasons.

 

In my humble opinion, and not mentioned yet, the very best "big" ship combined with the best itinerary is NCL Bliss round-trip 7 nights out of Seattle (so easy flights for the OP's family with 2 small children whom they're travelling with)... much much easier travel planning (shorter domestic flights) flying from Texas to Seattle return vs. to YVR or Anchorage on a one way southbound/northbound.

 

Bliss offers the best "big ship" itinerary of them all and includes in 7 days: 

Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay, Ketchikan, short stop in Victoria before getting back to Seattle.

with the children, Ovation is next best but you see less of Alaska compared to Bliss.

Have fun planning 😊

Edited by Hoopster95

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