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Home > Member Reviews > johnlfromdevon's Port Reviews of Vancouver, Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Whittier

johnlfromdevon's Port Reviews of Vancouver, Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Whittier
Sapphire Princess cruise in July 2012
Member Name: johnlfromdevon
Cruise Date: July 2012
Embarkation: Vancouver
Destination: Alaska
Member Review: johnlfromdevon's Sapphire Princess Review
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
The cruise ship terminal is close to downtown Vancouver so is very easy to reach. We had already checked at our hotel so the boarding process was very easy and quick. Our bags were collected from our hotel room and a shuttle bus took us straight to the port. Other than a 20 minute wait to clear US immigration - there was a computer glitch and a large Chinese group in front - we quickly boarded and were one of the first on board. After exploring the ship we had a leisurely lunch in the Atrium.

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Rainforest Hike Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
The rainforest "hike" is really a gentle stroll on boardwalks through the rainforest. A small group and an excellent guide. The highlight was seeing a black bear with cubs just below us. Take the first trip of the day the chance of seeing bears is better.

On returning we sat on our balcony watching the busy activity around the dock - a constant flow of small boats and sea planes.

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Mendenhall Glacier Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Fourth part of the trip. A flight over the Mendenhall glacier. This was awesome with on 5 of us in the small plane - I even sat next to the pilot. On criticism is that it would have been better if we had been supplied with headphones so the people in the back could have heard the pilot.

Nature Tour Rating: 2.0 out of 5+
Third part of the trip a bear hunt. This was disappointing since 20 of use where cramped in a uncomfortable school bus style coach - better transport is needed.

Whale Watching Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
A full on day.

First a coach trip up the valley to the small boat harbour - fascinating guide explaining life in Juneau.

Second a 3 hour whale watching trip on a small boat with in a total party of 6. You really get up close to whales. They are so confident of whale sighting that you get a refund if you do not see any.

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Port Rating: 3.0 out of 5+
The trouble with Skagway is that its is swamped with cruise ship visitors - there were 4 in on our visit so you don't really get proper feel of the town.

The small local museum is worth a visit also catch the park ranger talks.

We ate in the local brewery - good beer but so so food.

Shops everywhere but be prepared to negotiate. We looked a diamond ring in one store that started a "special" price of $8,000 and was down to $6,000 after 5 minutes as we walked out!

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Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Whittier is a unique place built during the war because the constant mists hide it and only accessible by a one way tunnel that shares the railway and road!

We were catching the train up to Denali and this is just across the quay from the boat. Disembarking was quick and easy. Your seat on the train is reserved so no need to rush.

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