When I noticed on the Internet that Princess was sailing from San Francisco, I knew I wanted to be on one if their ships. The fact that Sea Princess is one of their smaller ones was even more appealing.
When I boarded the ship, I was pleasantly surprised by the total atmosphere of the public areas. While busy with the rush of people boarding, the atrium was still a roomy area that never felt crowded.
My first stop was my stateroom, located on the starboard side near the front with an ocean view window that was not a large one, but the right size for viewing. Being a single traveler, I never felt jammed into a small space or crammed into the shower or bathroom space.
After watching us pass under the Golden Gate and out to sea, it was time for my first seating time at dinner. I had opted for traditional dining since I knew that I would always have dinner companions, and for the early seating so I would be able to see the earlier shows. I ate with a couple from Arizona, one from Napa, California and a third couple from San Francisco, but originally from Guangzhou China and limited in their English. We got along fine because I knew a little Cantonese.I was always very satisfied with my meals. I selected items from the menu that were not foods I would normally get at home.Breakfast and dinner were always an adventure, and never rushed. While the seven of us visited at dinner each evening, there was never a feeling of slow service, and dinner usually ended in two hours. Our waiter and his helper were very friendly and accommodating.
After dinner and a short walk around the Promenade Deck or within the ship, I went to the shows in the Princess Theatre or the Vista Lounge and was disappointed in only one, but was informed the next day by one of the Cruise Director staff that the situation had been taken care of. It was a case of an extremely bad comedian with no comedy. He was paired with a fantastic ventriloquist, so that show was not a total waste of time.
I have always lived by the Golden Rule, so enjoyed talking each morning with the Stateroom Steward and felt he did an extraordinary job in taking care of his assigned rooms. Being the lone traveler that I was, I had opportunities to visit with crew and other passengers, making some wonderful friends. I feel that it makes for easier traveling and faster connections to have personal cards in your pocket with name, address, phone numbers and email addresses. They are easy to pass out and have resulted in continued connections after my cruise.Of course, Alaska is further north that I am used to and July is perfect for late sunsets, lengthy dusks and early sunrises. There were several days of cloudy weather, but only one day of real rain and that was the day we cruised Glacier Bay. By staying on the Promenade Deck, I was under cover and still able to see spectacular calving.
I found this cruise to be very pleasing. There were over 300 children on the ship with families, but the programs for them were numerous and you never felt like they were in the way or bothersome. In fact, in looking back, I cannot recall any crying from unhappy, hungry children, nor any rude behavior from any of the teens on board.
With 2,000 passengers, there will always be the pushy, rude, snobbish ones. But they have to be overlooked. Sometimes, it is necessary to be aggressive with them, but also there are times to let them have their way. They are also the ones who complain about the food, the service or anything else, but they should be complaining about their lives instead.
My cruise experience was so positive that I have decided to travel on Princess to the Panama Canal, but I will always travel alone. Hope to meet you.
My cabin was sufficient for my needs. The closet and shelf space was ample and the bathroom and stateroom were roomy enough for me. I was a single, so the fact that there was only one chair in the room was okay with me. The flat-screen TV was great for relaxation, and the desk was my "clutter space". The only sound I heard was the rush of the ocean outside when the sea was a little rough, but it was calming and not disturbing.
The trip to the Mendenhall Glacier was nice, but the mosquitoes were numerous and huge. I did not experience any bites, but they were a bit bothersome.View All 971 Mendenhall Glacier Reviews
We were told not to expect to see any orcas, but saw six! Then we came upon a group of humpbacks who were bubble-feeding, a vision experienced on 5% of the time according to the naturalist on-board.View All 906 Whale Watching Reviews
The pilot gave an excellent narration on the way to the glacier landing and, while I was a bit nervous before taking my first helicopter flight, the fliight was wonderful.
We were outfitted with vests and cleated overshoes before taking off, and the weather was a bit cloudy, but I wore thermals and a sweater and was completely comfortable. The only problem I had but being nervous about jumping across the crevasses, but I was helped by some of the other passengers and never made to feel I was a burden.View All 64 Helicopter Tour Reviews
The weather was perfect so the views were spectacular. The narration was excellent and much appreciated.View All 1212 White Pass Scenic Railway Reviews
Actually, the excursion was listed as flightseeing and crab feast, with a 25-minute flight. The actual trip was transportation by van to a plave out of town for a delicious crab feast and an 18-minute flight back to Ketchikan. When four of us arrived at the van for the return trip to the ship, the other group, which had left the restaurant after us were already in the van and had been waiting, so had a considerably shorter flight.View All 129 Wilderness Tour & Crab Feast Reviews
I had heard about the gardens from friends and family for years, so looked forward to this stop. The gardens were beautiful, and the tea was nice, but I wish I had signed up for the garden and butterfly garden tour instead. It was less expensive and included more.View All 308 Butchart Gardens Reviews