This holiday was taken as part of celebrations for my wife's 50th birthday. We flew to Seattle from Sydney and stayed at the Double-tree Arctic Club Hotel for 3 nights. The weather was just fantastic in a place known for rain. Seattle was a great place to explore for a few days and we can hardly wait to go back. The highlights were the Pike Public Markets, the waterfront, the CBD, and the list goes on.
The pier used for boarding was modern and efficient. It's location just outside the city gave us a good view of the city and the space needle. Sail away was smooth although there was no hint of a sail away party that are seen on other cruise lines.
Sailing through the inside passage was spectacular, and that was only barely the beginning of the trip. The scenery was stunning with the beautiful water way, the high mountains and snow-capped peaks. It was all the more enjoyable because there were a lot of smaller watercraft enjoying the water.
Our ports of call included (in no particular order) Ketchikan, Juneau, Sitka, Anchorage, Kodiak, Icy Strait Point, Homer, Hubbard Glacier, Sawyer Glacier and Victoria BC. We can not say anything other than wow! Every place visited has its own character and charm.
We loved the float plane flight over the misty fjords national park near Ketchikan (a must do), Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau was beautiful, Hubbard and Sawyer Glaciers were spectacular. the whales in Icy Strait Point were very active and continuously breaching.
Homer was quiet and charming. The spit had a couple of great crab places. Kodiak had a small but interesting museum and a picturesque marina. Finally Sitka, was small but beautiful and the trip to see sea otters and other wildlife was fascinating.
With the exception of one, the excursions were purchased from the cruise line. No complaints at all. We were well taken care off in every respect. The ship was well-sized with only about 1200-1300 people aboard. The food in the dining was very good quality. The staff were extremely courteous and helpful. We thoroughly enjoyed our cruise and dream of the day when we can go back.