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Home > Member Reviews > merw's Port Reviews of Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Victoria, Seattle

merw's Port Reviews of Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Victoria, Seattle
Sapphire Princess cruise in July 2010
Member Name: merw
Cruise Date: July 2010
Embarkation: Seattle
Destination: Alaska
Member Review: merw's Sapphire Princess Review
Ketchikan
Port Rating: 5+ out of 5+
Bering Sea Crab Tour - Meg 1-888-239-3816 3 and 1/2 hours $159 or through Princess $179. Very low activity level. Heaters, windbreakers, seats, snacks, and drinks. HIGHLY RECOMMEND for everyone. Watch the video on their website. We saw at least 25 eagles eating fish from our boat. They were flying all over.

True Alaska Charters - Cassia - 1-866-882-2979 Went fishing with Captain Rowdy. Very pleasant man who worked hard getting the fishing gear ready. Boys loved this excursion!

Did not explore the town, too busy enjoying nature.

I ask a lot of questions and emailed them repeatedly. These gals were wonderful.



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Juneau
Port Rating: 5+ out of 5+
Whale Watching with Harv and Marv's Outback Alaska Tours Eileen 1-866-909-7288

The best part about this excursion was the guide who drove us to the boat (Jack?). He picked us up right at the ship and drove us around town explaining everything. He is recently retired and was energetic, pleasant, and loved Juneau and sharing his town with us. He was like your favorite uncle. Then we go whale watching and man did we see whales, pods of orcas and a couple of humpbacks. Our captain, Pete, was delightful and also an Alaska native. Really knew his stuff. After the boat ride, Jack takes us to Mendenhall Glacier and explains what we are looking at and ecourages us to walk out there and go to the ranger station, then it's off to the fish hatchery (my favorite part of the entire cruise) and although it's closed, he explains it to us. Fascinating really how the whole thing works. Then Jack drives around town so we can run in some stores for some pictures and treats. Then he drops us back right at the ship. No worries.

Many questions for Eileen via email. She was very patient with me.


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Skagway
Port Rating: 5+ out of 5+
Packer Expeditions Wade Gruhl 1-907-983-3005 Cell 1-907-612-0373

Went hiking the Denver Trail with Erin (the billygoat :)). Erin was our guide and she was fantastic! She is about 5' nothing and 100 pounds. She carried an 80 pound pack with all of our stuff and never complained. She has her masters in outdoor education so she really knew her stuff. Our entire family wants to adopt Erin! She was a real delight, knew what plants we could eat (and we did) knew where we could drink out of the stream (and we did), and knew it was worth it to get to the waterfall.

This was a combo trip, we rode the train, hiked with Erin, rode the train, and then hooked up with Dyea Dave for the ride down in his van.

David McCelland 1-907-209-5031

Dave is an interesting man who shared history and then cracked jokes. He was kind enough to wait for us as we ran in a store and bought some goodies.

This combo trip had never been done before, both men were quite helpful getting it together for me. Again, many questions from me...



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Victoria
Port Rating: 5+ out of 5+
Did not plan anything for this port. I was tired and kept getting conflicting reviews. Many people said not to even bother getting off the ship. They were wrong!!

I looked at the excurtions at the desk, many many people suggested Buchart gardens. Really? I had to sell this one HARD to my family. The ship was asking $79 a person. A friend got on the internet at the cafe and found out the tickets were only $28 for adults. What a rip off I thought. I can do better. Well...what I didn't know was that a cab ride out to the gardens was for four people for $51.50 one way. Yikes! We waited patiently for a 6 person cab (there weren't many). We got so blessed. Our cab driver quickly negotiated for us to stay with him for the evening. Wow! We saw Victoria, Mt. Russell, all the rabbits at the university, the Empress Hotel, the floating houses at the dock, and a lot more. What a pleasant man and wonderful tour guide.

Jaafar at Bluebird Cabs 1-250-884-0137



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Seattle
Port Rating: 5+ out of 5+
We added a quick tour of Seattle through Princess with our airport shuttle. We had about 3 hours to kill. We got on a huge bus and went to the Space Needle and Pike's Place market. Both were neat. Our bus driver was knowledgeable and a nice person. The frustrating part was that we lost 15 minutes at the market because one person held everyone up because she had to buy a teapot at the space needle gift shop. That wasn't the driver's or Princess's fault but the luck of the draw when you go with a big group.



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