Alaskan Cruises

May 9th, 2005, 07:03 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 545
Alaskan Cruises

I've posted this on the Cruises board, but no responses yet. Thought I'd try here too. I've offered to do some research on Alaskan Cruises on what could become a very large family trip (not sure if I'll even be going yet). I've never been on a cruise, and never done much research on Alaska travel. I'm not sure where to begin. I've read a lot of your posts already and am on information overload. Can someone get me started in the right direction? We're probably looking at a week long journey next July-ish and people that will be traveling range in age from 3 - 80 years old - so something for everyone would be nice - ranging from active to not so-active. What cruise lines are the best? What are your recommended tours or lines? And any ways to save money for a large group? Any tips, tricks and advice much appreciated. Thanks!
yale is offline  
May 9th, 2005, 09:10 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 189
I'll give you my experience, hopefully someone with more expertise can chime in & help you. Our group of 7 went on the Celebrity Summit in September 2003.

I think your first decision should be to select which cruise & itineary you would like. You basically have 3 choices:
1)Roundtrip Seattle
2)roundtrip Vancouver
3)One way between Seward Alaska & Vancouver.
We choose Northbound from Seward to Vancouver because it allowed us 1 day at the Hubbard Glacier which turned out to be a highlight of our cruise. I don't believe the roundtrip cruises have enough time to travel to a Glacier. Also since you are essentially traveling further north, the scenery is more spectacular than what you might see in a roundtrip cruise. The downside is that you incur the extra expense of buying a oneway ticket to/from Seward. We ended up flying into Anchorage, staying overnight, then taking a very scenic (Albeit slooooow) train to Seward.
Two sites that helped me immensly with the planning were: Cruisecritic.com & Cruise-addicts.com
You will definitely get more information on those cruise only message board.
Once you decide what city you will leave from come back to this site to get hotel/restaurant info on the that. Good Luck!
mabella101 is offline  
May 9th, 2005, 11:43 AM
  #3  
jq
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 242
The above is good advice on options and on where to find other info. I also recomm cruisecritic.com and cruisemate.com Alaska boards for lots of info on what and where. I would also recomm that you not try to book all of the activities as a group on the ship, too hard and you will be too tired to go. Each family should book their own excusions as they are very expensive in Alaska and only those who really want to do each should. Read travel books like Fodors or Frommers Alaska for more data.
jq is offline  
May 9th, 2005, 12:47 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 4,469
For a first option. Determine HOW much time you have, I don't really recommend any one ways with out the investment of at least another 5 days. AND most certainly round trip cruises have a glacier viewing day. I give a big edge to round trip Vancouver over Seattle which has more outside passage sailing. There is plenty to consider, there is actually more scenic sailing sometimes on the round trip as I've been on one ways that sailed way out in the gulf. One ways sail Seward or Whittier, with Seward my top pick. BUT do see and do some of the wonderful activities. A very big missed opportunity if you don't in my opinion and way too many people don't.
BudgetQueen is offline  
May 9th, 2005, 05:21 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,892
Our family went on the SUn Princess an enjoyed it. We chose a route that included a stop in Skagway and went from Vancouver to Whitier because we continued on with an RV trip from Anchorage to Fairbanks.

With a large family group, you might want to do one of the round trip cruises so you don't have the added expense of the flight out of Anchorage.
bigtyke is offline  
Dec 26th, 2008, 08:42 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 2
Here is a nice Alaskan cruise FAQ that you may find useful:

http://www.al-cruise.com/FAQ.php

Best,
Jessica

jessica_green is offline  
Dec 26th, 2008, 08:57 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 65,371
jessica: You registered today and found a couple of old threads (this one is from 2005 to link to the same website. Unfortunately, that does look suspiciously like advertising which isn't allowed on Fodors . . . .

janisj is online now  
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