Must See

Apr 26th, 2007, 04:14 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 7
Must See

I am doing the cruise on Sun Princess May 13th. Our party has activity limits. (a lot of walking) Our itinerary is Seattle, Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Victoria.

Is the Mendenhall glacier much different from other glaciers that you would see in the sea planes or helicopters? There is one sea plane that names several glaciers but not the Mendenhall.

I saw that there was not surcharge for large passengers on the sea planes. My Brother is a large man and has to pay extra. Although he wonders if you see more from the Helicopter than the sea planes?

I have read many posts that recommend not booking through the cruise line, for savings. Who do you recommend?
I am looking for the must sees:

I read Whales 100% in Juneau we want to see whales. Other wildlife?
We would like to do a Dog sled. Does anyone know if the Dog sleds are on sleds or the wheeled variety?

Skagway, we were thinking the railway. I looked at booking direct the White Pass railway, not a big price difference there. Princess charges $107, $98 online.

We will do the helicopter or seaplane, wondering which stop would have the best sites?

Good restaurants?

Thank you for your time.
flwiggle is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 07:48 AM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 1,276
How fun! We were on the Island Princess several years ago. GREAT trip!

The advantage or a helicopter flight to the glaciers is that for some of them they land right on the glacier and oyu can walk around. I don't know about the Mendenhall Glacier since we did our glacier flight in Juneau and were able to land on a glacier away from anyone else. Very cool!

I tend to book through the cruise lines for something that I absolutely want to make sure I do. I would definitely encourage you to do the White Pass railway - fabulous. We did the White Pass/Yukon excusrion which took us up in a bus and we went all the way into the Yukon. Then we road the train back. It was a great day. Ketchikan we did the 4WD adventure and that I could have skipped. It was dusty and the area we went through had been logged so it wasn't really much to see. I would have been happier just wandering around the town more.

Hope this helps a bit. Have fun!
jcasale is offline  
Apr 27th, 2007, 04:07 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 7
Thank you, for the insight.
flwiggle is offline  
Apr 28th, 2007, 08:14 AM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 4,469
Mendenhall glacier is a very cheap option for a glacier look, easy to get there for a $12 round trip shuttle bus. Float planes usually do not have weight surcharges, helicopters always do.

With a glacier helicopter landing it is superior to land and see a glacier first hand. No comparism to flying over.

I always book independent, very easy to do in Alaska with many long time vendors to choose from.

Humpbacks are a given on whales watches out of Hoonah and Juneau. Also usually eagles and sea lions.

If a dog sled tour is a fly in- big bucks, then it's on snow, if it's less than $125 or so, then it's a cart ride on dirt/gravel.

The difference in the White Pass RR is the cruise contracted train picks up at the ship. The direct booked picks up at the depot in town. Same trip otherwise. Be sure to sit on the left side of the train, facing the engine leaving Skagway, you then have all the commentary and views on the way up.
Thane Ore House is my top pick in Juneau for salmon.
BudgetQueen is offline  
Apr 28th, 2007, 04:56 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 7
Thank you, budgetqueen. Do only helicopters land on the glaciers?
flwiggle is offline  

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