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Home > Member Reviews > NoobCruise's Port Reviews of Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan, Victoria

NoobCruise's Port Reviews of Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan, Victoria
Westerdam cruise in September 2012
Member Name: NoobCruise
Cruise Date: September 2012
Embarkation: Seattle
Destination: Alaska
Member Review: NoobCruise's Westerdam Review
Juneau
Mendenhall Glacier Rating: 3.0 out of 5+
Mendenhall Glacier was really beautiful, but we didn't have enough time there. The tour gave us one hour from the time we got off the bus til we had to be back on. That was not enough time. If you take a tour bus there and want plenty of time to hike around, be aware you don't have to get back on the bus. The rangers inside the visitor center can call a taxi for you so you can stay later. I wish we had known that. We would have walked all the way out to Nugget Falls instead.


Whale Watching Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
In Juneau, we had booked the Tracy Arm Fjord and Glacier Explorer, but when we went to join the excursion we were told it was cancelled. We hopped on a whale watching excursion with Allen Marine and had a fantastic time! We saw lots of Humpbacks and Orcas. We didn't see any breaching or bubble feeding, and only one tail, but it was still fun and exciting. We stayed out on deck for the entire trip, even though it was raining for the last half lol


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Sitka
Port Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
Sitka was a lovely setting with lots of little islands sprinkled around the bay, many just big enough for a house or 2 and a boat dock. I wouldn't mind owning one ;) We walked out to the Raptor center, then around the National Historic Park. It's a very do-able walk if you're in reasonable shape to walk. The raptor center was very interesting and we saw some beautiful birds, but it's really more like an educational zoo. The birds are all in caged enclosures. The hike around the National Historical Park was very beautiful. We enjoyed it very much, and we regularly hike around Yosemite NP as comparison lol This was a great port not to do an excursion in. We also went back into town and watched the Tlinget Native Dancers. It was a nice show, but it was a little too much like a stage production for me, with a stage, special lighting, microphones and speakers. I was expecting a little more "native" and a little less "production".
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Ketchikan
Flightseeing Rating: 3.0 out of 5+
Ketchikan was a beautiful sunny day! A great day for flightseeing! We booked the Mountaintop Flightseeing and Crab Feed at George Inlet. The flight portion was great, really beautiful, but too short. It was only about a 20 minute flight. Once we arrived at the dock, we would have liked a few moments to just look around, absorb the incredible scenery, snap some pics, but we were immediately herded up to the dining room. The food was very good, but the dining room was not. We were seated at one long table with 20 to 30 people in a very small cramped room. Since my husband and I had lingered a little to snap a few pics, we were not the first ones in. If you do this excursion, try to be in the first half to enter so you can get a good seat! Half of the people seated at the long table faced the windows and got a view while they ate. The rest of us were seated with our backs to the window just facing a wall. I was very disappointed by that because their website shows a large open dining room with floor to ceiling windows and many tables where everyone could look out. What we got was about the size of a 2 car garage with a couple of small windows on one wall. That was an awful lot of money to pay to sit and stare at a wall through our meal. The food was very good though and everyone seemed to enjoy it. I thought after our meal that we would have time to relax on the deck with a beer or glass of wine. Nope. As soon as we finished eating, we were herded up to the bus and back to the ship. I think the time frame is too short for this excursion, unless you only care about eating crab. We both wished we had booked the Misty Fjords Flightseeing instead.


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Victoria
Port Rating: Not Rated
Victoria, BC was beautiful! It was another beautiful sunny day. We chose to just walk along the Inner Harbor path into town. The sunset was incredible and there was a constant supply of great photo ops. We were both very happy we didn't do an excursion here. It's a beautiful city! If we go back, we'll probably do a carriage ride tour. This city is beautiful!

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