We sailed northbound on the Radiance on 8/23. We are a couple in our mid-twenties. We were concerned that there would not be many people in our age bracket, but we were pleasantly surprised. There were many young families and couples on board. Embarkation was quick and easy; we were on the boat by 11:45. The ship's layout is easy to figure out. We never felt that the boat was crowded. We had fantastic weather on this cruise. It only rained for about a half an hour on our first port day. The rest of the time it was dry and sometimes the sun even came out! We were in room 3024. The room was a good size and looked like it was recently re-done. Personally, I wouldn't book a cabin so far forward again. I could feel the waves a bit too much on the two sea days for my liking.
We ate in the main dinning room six nights for dinner. We were seated at a table for six but only four of us showed up each night. The service was great and so was the food. We never had a bad meal, just some that were a little better than others. We ate at the Windjammer every day for breakfast, once for dinner, and once for lunch. Breakfast was great. The pre-made eggs were just ok but the egg station whipped up any fresh eggs or omelets you want (wish we started doing this earlier). Lunch and dinner in the Windjammer were both fine, nothing too special. Our favorite place to eat on the boat was the Park Cafe in the Solarium. We ate lunch here almost everyday. They had pre-made sandwiches, hot roast beef, and made to order salads (my favorite). They also had chips and desserts for a snack. We never found this area to be too crowded and was definitely our favorite little spot on the whole boat.
We did many of the smaller activities around the boat. We played mini-golf, checkers, pool, and Wii in the Colony Club, worked on the puzzle on deck 9, and went to two of the shows on board. We were never bored and really enjoyed the variety of activities offered. I had only been on Caribbean cruises before this and generally sunbathing was my only activity. We also spent a lot of time in the Solarium. We loved the hot tub. It was nice to see Royal Caribbean offer family time in that area, but it was also great to see them actually enforce these times. If it wasn't family time, crew members made sure it was adults only. I also enjoyed that it was open 24 hours a day. It was great for a dip after dinner! We spent one night in the Star Quest Club. It wasn't too busy but there were enough people there to dance without feeling awkward. We did go up to the spa once. We got a couples massage (hot stone and bamboo). It was really relaxing and beneficial, albeit a bit expensive.
We liked all four ports that we stopped at. We booked all excursions independently of Royal Caribbean, except for the ZipRidder in Icy Strait Point. We went kayaking in Ketchikan, went on a glacier trek in Juneau, and went on our own hike up to Lower Dewey Lake in Skagway. There was plenty to do in every port. I enjoyed the stores in Icy Strait Point the most. They seemed the most authentic and they had really beautiful native jewelry.
Getting off the boat was as easy as getting on. We hired a taxi for the day that kept us busy until we needed to be at the airport at 6pm. It was great because it really gave us time to enjoy Seward and Anchorage. We had a great time on this Alaskan cruise! I'm so glad we went with the Radiance; she was perfect for viewing Alaska. I wouldn't hesitate to book this cruise again in the future.