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PORT SIDE OR STARBOARD SIDE- ALASKA CRUISING


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Many will say it doesn't matter since you'll be out on deck much of the time, but if you want to sightsee from your room, I think you'll want to be on the east side (starboard northbound, port southbound). If you're doing a roundtrip, I wouldn't think it matters, though I might go with starboard so you get the land side in the first half.

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4 hours ago, strickerj said:

Many will say it doesn't matter since you'll be out on deck much of the time, but if you want to sightsee from your room

 

I am one of those who have recommended this repeatedly on CC.  Wildlife does not care on which side of the ship you are located when they decide to make an appearance.  A PA announcement of "whales off the starboard side" will not be of much interest to you if you are sitting on your veranda on the ship's port side.  

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7 minutes ago, rkacruiser said:

 

I am one of those who have recommended this repeatedly on CC.  Wildlife does not care on which side of the ship you are located when they decide to make an appearance.  A PA announcement of "whales off the starboard side" will not be of much interest to you if you are sitting on your veranda on the ship's port side.  

That's true; I usually plan based on what's interesting on land since the wildlife is unpredictable.

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Unless the ship is in the Gulf of Alaska much of the time there will be small islands on one side and the mainland on other side.  And while I agree that you may want to spend much of your cruising time on an upper deck I will also point out that Celebrity has naturalists on their Alaska sailings.  On the Celebrity S-class ships used in Alaska (Solstice and the Eclipse) during the day, when not giving presentations, my experience has been that the naturalists tend to frequent the Sky Lounge.  If the weather is cool or rainy the Sky Lounge is an excellent place to spend your time.

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20 hours ago, Northern Aurora said:

 On the Celebrity S-class ships used in Alaska (Solstice and the Eclipse) during the day, when not giving presentations, my experience has been that the naturalists tend to frequent the Sky Lounge.  If the weather is cool or rainy the Sky Lounge is an excellent place to spend your time.

 

The HAL ships will have a National Park Service Rangers aboard in Glacier Bay.  Usually a few native Alaskans will embark as well for the day to answer questions and sell their wares.  The Crow's Nest is like the Sky Lounge; excellent, comfortable viewing for those who wish not to be outside.  

 

On my most recent Alaskan cruises aboard a HAL ship, their is a staff member who is the EXC Guide who is responsible for narration in scenic areas.  The quality of the narration varies with the individual, but it is usually informative.  A guest-sensitive ship's Master will have his Deck Officers use the PA at appropriate times when the Bridge Team on duty spot significant wildlife at unusual times.  

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 12/11/2020 at 9:25 PM, Ashland said:

Have you considered a true aft...my favorite for Alaska.

 

Just curious in knowing...it is true or a myth that wildlife will follow a ship due to the turning up of fish etc. I always wondered. Thanks! 

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3 hours ago, IMKTDQT810 said:

 

Just curious in knowing...it is true or a myth that wildlife will follow a ship due to the turning up of fish etc. I always wondered. Thanks! 

On our 1st cruise to Alaska, when we were returning through the inside Passage, a large pod of Dahl's Porpoises followed our ship through the passage, leaping in the wake the ship created. This was the only time I've seen such a large pod rear of the ship. They may very well have been feeding.

 

As for the question originally posted in this thread, my TA has always recommended the port side. We have sailed on both sides and as previously mentioned wildlife doesn't care which side of the ship you're on. You may find yourself viewing from the top deck on many occasions after all.

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