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Alaska Cruise Lines


Cruising Carol55
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Just looking for some recommendations for a good cruise line for a 7 day, Alaskan, sea only cruise that will include the inside passage as well as the usual stops like Ketchikan, Juneau, Sitka, etc.  The reviews on the forums have been overwhelming as are all of the websites I have visited.  So many choices!  So many ships! So many sizes!  The only line we have ever used is Royal Caribbean for a Caribbean cruise.  While it was nice...I am not very impressed with what I’ve read about their Alaskan cruises.  Any help and suggestions are appreciated!  

Thank you!  

Cruising Carol55

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A Round Trip out of Vancouver on Princess or HAL will give you the most Inside Passage time, typically hit the three most popular ports of Juneau/Ketchikan/Skagway, and provide the largest number of Glacier Bay itineraries (even though next year will see new lines getting slots, Princess/HAL still have their historic allocation giving them far more than any other lines). Princess also has the most 'Alaskan' onboard setup, with guest speakers, sled dog puppies, axe-throwing contests on top of the presence of naturalists to narrate what you're seeing.

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I agree on either HAL or Princess and we've done both. We sail out of Seattle so if we want Sitka it has to be HAL and Skagway is Princess. We prefer HAL because the Oosterdam, Westerdam, etc. are about the right size for us - 1800 passengers. We don't mind Princess but the have 1000 more people on them! Princess does have the Alaska-themed activities but so does HAL. If you go to Glacier Bay then they have the rangers come on board, etc. Either line would be a good choice. I'd look at times in port and what glacier you are going to see. 

 

Karen

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18 hours ago, Cruising Carol55 said:

Just looking for some recommendations for a good cruise line for a 7 day, Alaskan, sea only cruise that will include the inside passage as well as the usual stops like Ketchikan, Juneau, Sitka, etc.  The reviews on the forums have been overwhelming as are all of the websites I have visited.  So many choices!  So many ships! So many sizes!  The only line we have ever used is Royal Caribbean for a Caribbean cruise.  While it was nice...I am not very impressed with what I’ve read about their Alaskan cruises.  Any help and suggestions are appreciated!  

Thank you!  

Cruising Carol55

 

While inside passage is nice, IMHO you forget the most important element in picking the cruise is what are the scenic cruising; Glacier Bay, Hubbard, College Fjord, Tracy Arm.    IMHO you must pick one that gets Glacier Bay, once in Alaska it is all "inside" and the inside refers to the sailing to the east of Vancouver Island, while neat, not the highlight, I'd not pick an inside with Tracy Arm over one that gets Glacier.

 

Also tour's / excursions like whale watching, flights, or fishing/bears etc. are equally important to what you plan in ports.   Juneau for example must do whale and Mendehnal IMHO

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22 hours ago, Cruising Carol55 said:

...I am not very impressed with what I’ve read about their Alaskan cruises.  Any help and suggestions are appreciated!  

 

What are you reading? And which ship(s)? Everyone has an opinion. We recently returned from Alaska on Ovation of the Seas and it was magnificent. We have also sailed on Serenade of the Seas (sister ship is Radiance) and although we love this class of ship, the smoking permitted in the casino is now a deal-breaker for us. We will mainly sail Celebrity from now on due to their no indoor smoking policy (and blessed to have had our recent Ovation sailing with no indoor smoking - I guess they were just trying it out, so very fortunate for us).

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Good to know!   We have loved our RC Cruises in the past and have had great experiences.  Most of the complaints were regarding extra charges and inconsistent service.  Nevertheless, we are eyeing the Ovation of the Seas!   We should try something different, but that ship looks delicious!  

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I too would suggest Princess Cruise lines or perhaps Holland.  A cruise like the one Princess offers on the 23rd of May 2020 that departs from Vancouver, cruises the inside passage, and ports at Ketchikan, Juneau, and Skagway, and then cruises both Glacier Bay National Park and College Fjord and ends in Whittier, AK (Anchorage) would be a good choice.

 

Glacier Bay and College Fjord offer spectacular scenery.  Only two cruise ships per day are allowed to cruise Glacier Bay National Park and Princess and Holland have the most permits.  I wouldn’t go on a cruise that didn’t offer Glacier Bay at the very least.  Just my 2 cents.

 

Do a lot of research before booking an Alaskan cruise.

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