If you have ever wanted to visit Alaska, join me on my travels as we cross the seas on my recent Alaskan Cruise!
My husband and I took a trip on the Celebrity Solstice this May 2018! It was an amazing trip! We took a plane flight into Seattle, Washington where we shuttled on board the cruise line. The service, food, and ship was a beautiful experience. In fact, the food on board this ship has been some of the best food I have experienced on a cruise. We are fortunate that my husband works for a company that takes great care to plan these trips, and so, I want to share this wonderful experience with you so you plan an experience like this for yourself!
The interior of the cruise ship was stunning! This is a photo of the main dining hall!
The rooms were spacious and we had a balcony–which I would highly recommend so you don’t miss any beautiful scenery or whales passing by the boat!
What to wear? We took this trip at the end of May and it was still very cold, and rainy. Bring a waterproof rain jacket and waterproof boots or shoes. You will need warm layers as well. Some days I even wore a extra spandex pair of pants under my jeans. You will experience chilly, windy, rainy weather for a good chunk of your trip, so be prepared. Pack a pair of gloves and Sunglasses as well!
The first two days we spent at sea! We had a company event while on board, but other than that, it was an opportunity to relax and catch up on sleep before we docked at our first stop in Ketchikan, Alaska!
Ketchikan is a beautiful little island by the sea! The only way in or out is by boat or plane. Here you will see lots of wildlife on the outskirts of the town. It’s possible to see whales and marine life by the coastal waters, bald eagles, starfish, mountain goats and much more!
While your in town at Ketchikan, make sure you stop by the local shops! Ketchikan is known for its totem polls and unique tourist shops. We even bought smoked salmon here that we packed home in our suit cases!
After touring around the town in the morning, we were off to a Sea Plane flight over the Misty Fjords followed by a crab feast! It truly was a feast! All you can eat! We loaded it up! It was all great and I got lots of great photos. Here we are at George Inlet Lodge eating out delicious crab feast!
The crab feast included a plane flight to the crab feast! Off the dock walking to the Plane, there were hundreds of star fish! It was amazing to see so many starfish in such a cold climate!
The plane ride was very scenic and lasted close to an hour! I was able to take some beautiful shots from the air of Ketchikan!
More Aerial shots from the sea plane!
Whole in Ketchikan, we learned a little bit about the weather! Make sure you bring a warm pair of water proof shoes. At any moment you may experience a drizzle. The climate is also chilly! Bring a warm coat!
After Ketchikan, before our next stop was the Tracey Arm Glacier! All these shots and videos were taken from he balcony of our room, on the boat. I do recommend getting a room with a balcony simply because there is so much to see from the boat! We even saw whales from our bedroom balcony!
We were able to view all of this from the balcony of our room!
I’m not going to lie, our stop in Juno, Alaska was a total bust. We had kayaking and whale watching from a boat scheduled, and all of it was cancelled due to weather! Apparently the ocean was pretty rocky that day. Make sure you wear your rain jacket and waterproof shoes because Juno has rainfall for 222 days out of the year! We did walk around town for a bit, and we found a great place to eat local salmon crab cakes. The salmon cakes has a sweet Asian sauce on them! Make sure you grab a bite of these to eat while you are in town. They were delicious!
On a side note, we did speak to others who got on earlier whale tours in Juno before the sea weather got bad, and they saw lots of sea life…whales, seals, and bears!
After Juno, our next stop was Skagway, Alaska! The port entrance in Skagway is absolutely beautiful! It’s set down in the center of some of the most scenic Mountain View’s. The first thing you will notice when you dock in Scagway is–what appears to look like graffiti all over the side of the mountain cliffs. Well, it’s not graffiti–it’s the way a ship would mark where they were to dock. Kind of like marking their parking spot. This was one of the coolest markers we saw painted in the rocks. It reminded us of Pirates of the Caribbean, just in Alaska!
While in Skagway, we opted for a Alaskan Dog Sled Mushers camp tour! I really enjoyed this excursion. The drive up to the camp included a bus tour through town, up into the scenic mountains.
We were able to meet really dog mushers and engages with Alaskan Huskies that were training for the race! At the mushers camp, you learn about the life of the mushers, the dogs, and what it’s like to race! They will even let you hold the puppies!
Skagway is an Alaskan town with a lot of history. After visiting the mushers camp, we headed back into to town. Our first stop was the most photographed building in all of Alaska–Camp Skagway No. 1 AB building, built in 1899. It’s made from pieces of driftwood. Skagway is also known for its railroads. The railroads are very narrow tracks, and so all the parts for the railroad are made locally in the area. We spent some time at sea on board the Celebrity Solstice before we arrived at our final stop–my favorite stop, Victoria, Canada!
When we docked, this little guy swam right up to the side of the ship! I feel lucky that I was able to this seal in the flesh! While we didn’t g t to see any whales, the waters on the way to Victoria are known to have many Orcas. So make sure you spend some time whale watching from the ship.
Welcome to Victoria, Canada! Not kidding, Victoria is probably one of the most beautiful cities I have ever been to. This is a place that I would love to return to!
I have never seen more flowers in my life, even more that when I have visited the Hawaiian Islands. Seriously, Victoria feels like the garden of Eden. Victoria, as part of a rich tradition, does a flower count every year. They send “counters” throughout the city to count the number of blossoms. This year, the count was over 5 billion. The photo below was taken by one of our friends in the Butchart Gardens of Victoria! Isn’t this photo magnificent! These floral trees were everywhere in Victoria! I’m not sure what they were called but they were beautiful.
The architecture in Victoria is old, European Tudor style. Many of the homes are maintained original to the era they were built in.
While in Victoria, we were able to visit one of the most famous homes, The Craigdarroch Castle! This castle was built in the late 1800’s by one of the wealthiest men in the world at the time. This was a fascinating tour, and well worth taking the excursion.
Before leaving Victoria, we walked through the city and took photos of the dock near the Empress Hotel, as well as the beautiful Empress Hotel, and The BC Parliament Building . The architecture of this city is amazing! Before leaving Victoria, make sure you stop and get some ice cream at a local favorite–Chocolat Favoris! I enjoyed maple flavored ice cream dipped in a hazelnut chocolate. Wow! It was delicious!
When night falls on the city of Victoria, the buildings come to life! The buildings are trimmed in lights throughout the city!
This Alaskan Cruise was truly amazing! I hope you enjoyed this blog post! It was fun to write about this experience! I hope you decide to take an Alaskan Cruise and see how beautiful this part of the world truly is!