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OK - How bad will this be?


iamlisad

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I was making some phone calls today and learned in the course of them that on the day we are in Juneau there will be 6 ships in port. The woman said, "That swells are population by 20,000 you know." Yikes. Similar situation in Skagway - 5 ships I was told. Hubby is not big on crowds. Honest opinions from others traveling with crowd reluctant travelers, how bad will this be?

Sign me, "Still excited, but nervous about hubby's reaction"
Lisa
Pittsburgh, PA
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It will definitely make for some congestion in the dock area in Juneau and possibly along "Broadway" in Skagway but keep in mind that people are off on tours a lot and at different times. If you have activities planned that will take you away from these areas for most of the day, it should be okay. We have been in Juneau with 5 big ships in port on a rainy day and the shopping area was more crowded than I've ever seen it but weather had a lot to do with it.

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We also had 5 or 6 ships on our day in Juneau. But some get in very early in morning and some come in later in the day. So someone is always coming and going. If you are going to an excursion outside of the city like the whalewatching or flightseeing. I don't think there would be 20,000 extra, more like 12-15,000.
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i am so sorry for all the ships that will be in your ports. that really makes it hard to book tours and get a place in things that interest you. that is why i go with carnival. the inside passage to glacier bay is a great cruise, it is cheaper because of the shoulder months, great weather, the kids are in school and there are less ships in the dock on port days. and i like the spirit . it is a great ship and the crew and service is great. i guess all you can do is book any tours early or go with what the ship offers. i am going to do this the next trip for a few tours. it will still be a great trip im sure and i know you will have a wonderful adventure you will never forget. i love alaska and all the ports that it offers.

DUSTY

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What day are you in Juneau? Some of the ships may be small ships. You can check who's going to be with you at [url="http://www.alaskacruises.org/home/index.cfm"]http://www.alaskacruises.org/home/index.cfm[/url]

And as everyone has said, if you take shore excursions, you'll be away from them, and many of them will be taking shore excursions, taking them away from you. [img]http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

Denise
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The ports will be over run in the down town shopping areas. As mentioned- the key is careful planing and getting the most out of your touring. Alaska has exploded in tourists. It is real sad that the Sun/Dawn Princess ships are now considered small. [img]http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img] Used to be the largest sailing a few years ago. A lot has changed since I first went on the wonderful Sky Princess.
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Thanks for the responses and especially the link to the schedule. We'll be in Juneau on June 22nd and it appears that at least five of the six ships are quite large. Same situation in Skagway and Ketchikan. I waited too long to book some of our shore excursions. I really wanted to get over to Haines but the fast ferry is totally booked. The woman was encouraging that they often have cancellations but I'm not going to keep my hopes too high. Wheeled dog sleds and Captain Larry were also booked on the days I tried for those.
I'm still very excited and we will try to find activities that will help us to escape crowds -- I've been able to secure rental cars in a couple of ports so we'll try to find some quiet spaces. But I will begin warning hubby that the pictures we've seen of people wandering a fairly quiet Creek Street are probably pretty misleading!!!!
Budget Queen - as I indicated in an earlier post, I first went to Ketchikan, Juneau and Haines as part of a high school mission trip 25 years ago and I've always wanted to go back. You mentioned how much things have changed -- I think I'm in for a HUGE reality check!
Thanks again for the helpful info
Lisa in Pittsburgh
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Lisa,

You may want to check out other tour operators. BQ has posted websites to the towns that have links or phone #'s of most of the tour companies-- [url="http://www.traveljuneau.com"]www.traveljuneau.com[/url] [url="http://www.visit-ketchikan.com"]www.visit-ketchikan.com[/url] [url="http://www.skagway.org"]www.skagway.org[/url] [url="http://www.sitka.org"]www.sitka.org[/url]

Ask to be notified of cancellations if the ones you like are full.

I was in Ketchikan twice with 3 to 4 other big ships, and Creek Street was no problem, if that makes you feel any better.
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You can rent a car in Juneau and drive over the bridge to Douglas, once your over the bridge turn right and go out the road to the very end you might get to see some whales, it's a beautiful drive and no people out there. Or you can drive out to Thane from Juneau and maybe see some whales. You could also hike Mt. Juneau or Mt. Roberts they are nice trails and you won't be alone but not in a crowd either. [img]http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

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Gosh where are all these ships going to dock - must be different times, because we came back from Alaska on Saturday off the Diamond Princess and we were in Juneau with the Oosterdam - the Radiance of the Seas had to anchor and tender in!! It was very busy but didn't seem like 9,000 people to me. As peoples have said before, so many are out on excursions, although we stayed in town during the day because we had done some of the other excursions on previous trips - then we went out on the Evening Whale Watch...awesome!!! Awesome!!! Ketchikan wasn't a problem for us because my DH and I got onto a boat with another couple and went fishing for the 6 hours that we were in port, other than our guide we were all on our own and could appreciate the awesome beauty of Alaska. The best excursion by far!!!!
By the way, we booked our cruise at the end of last year on the Diamond and all the excursions were available online, including a Sled dogs & Mushers Camp. This was our biggest dissapointment. The total time you are on the wheeled sled with the dogs is 4 minutes up the hill and 2 minutes down the hill - the rest was petting the dogs who were tied up to their dog houses. A waste of time and money IMHO. But there again different strokes for different folks!

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On the port listing, can we tell who will be tendered? Can I assume it is the later arriving ones? In our case, there are two ports where 4 ships (including ours) are docking at the same time!! [img]http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif[/img]

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