To say it was an adventure would be to say the least. First, US Airways is not my favorite airline and they just added to my frustration to start my trip last week. A 3 hour delay almost made me literally miss the boat. Had I been 15 minutes later, they would have denied boarding. The good part, there was no wait to get on board. They were doing the muster drill when I arrived. That wasn't too terrible but very much to the point. The people that missed the muster drill, had another oppurtunity to join at 6 p.m. Since I got there in the middle, I found my station right away. The next step was to get to the stateroom. I was pleasantly surprised by the size! It had 2 single beds, as we were 2 ladies traveling together but had ample space for both of us and of course all of luggage. The beds were like heaven, very much like staying at a Westin. We had a Verandah on the Starboard side. Since we were heading southbound once up in Juneau, we had beautiful views. I took the Whales and Rainforest Trails small group tour in Juneau, AWESOME tour! It was only 19 people and we got to see a group of 14 whales bubble-feeding. It was just purely amazing and majestic to see these animals doing it! We saw bald eagles and of course a mother bear and her cubs. Mendenhall Glacier is a must season. One of the Icebergs broke and it was like a loud shot-gun, totally amazing.
Glacier Bay was PHENOMENAL! If you were port side, your side of the ship saw the glacier first but no worries, the bow was open and so were the other decks. The caving of the ice was totally worth the trip. Just totally majestic.
Then they turned the ship so the starboard side could see it. They slowed the ship to see a mother and her cubs walking up the beach area and also to see a whale too! Ketchikan, what a nice little walking town. I did the Birds, Bears and Barnacles tour, nothing to write home about but got to see more bears, bald eagles up close and a salmon hatchery. I probably could have saved the money and just walked the town. Saw cute little sea otters on the tender to the ship. Sitka, another wonderful little town and tried the zip lining tour. Unfortunately, the vertigo kicked in and ended up doing the nature tour. A nice walk through the rainforest. The town was great and full of vendors. Probably my favorite shopping spot for souvenirs. Victoria was nice but since I ended up sick and knew I was going to have a long travel day home, I stayed on the ship. However, the ship still had all kinds of entertainment from karaoke to movies. After resting, I met up with my group for a farewell cocktail (non-alcoholic for me) up in the Crow's nest. What a neat meeting place almost every night. The ship had something for everyone from classical music to the piano bar to shows and then of course the Northern Lights where you could find us dancing the nights away! The main dining room was great, our server no matter where I saw him on the ship always knew my name. The high teas were nice touches. Pinnacle Grill, Filet Mignon you could cut with a butter knife so tender. The food was great, something for everyone! All in all, I had a wonderful time and definitely recommend Holland for all ages. There were 250+ kids on our sailing but you never would have known it for all the kids activities they had going one.