If you are looking for an Alaskan cruise where you dress for dinner, and have shows and casinos, this cruise is NOT for you! If you want to see all the things you associate with Alaska, then I say "Welcome aboard!" On our 11-day cruise from Ketchikan to Sitka, we crossed off every item on our Alaska bucket list: Northern Lights, orcas, humpback whales, black bears, mountain goats, sea lions, puffins, glaciers calving, and more. We even had a rainbow on our last day out. Now, I know that no cruise can guarantee that you will see all of those things, but I have never been on a cruise where they tried so hard to make our experiences the very best. Note: Other Alaskan cruises seem to charge for every shore excursion; this cruise is all-inclusive. Think about that when you are comparing prices.
What surprised me from the beginning was how the captain and crew, barely 4 hours after dropping off the passengers from the 11-day cruise from Sitka to Ketchikan, greeted us with so much excitement and enthusiasm - which was the tone for the entire trip. The Alaskan Dream is a catamaran-type ship, 40 passengers/ 20 cabins and, with the exception of 1 [I think], most are small with a shower/toilet combo. Don't let that deter you; everything fit in our cabin 304, and the shower curtain kept our mini-bathroom dry and gave us plenty of laughs.The food was outstanding; so good, our baker is one of three contestants going on "Cake Wars" after the cruise season! By the way, the cruise company provides each passenger with rain boots and a rain jacket and rain pants, on hooks just outside the cabins, so we didn't have to bring that stuff.
The best things about the trip were the relaxed atmosphere [jeans at dinner, yea!], and the ability to stop and see whenever the opportunity presented itself. The captain would come on the intercom and say, "Folks, there's a pod of orcas around us, so we're going to stop for awhile" or "Folks, I know it's late, but if you want to put jackets on over your pajamas and come on deck, we're going to stop and watch the Northern Lights" or "We've got some black bears fishing on the shore to the left. We'll stop so you can get a good look." I feel like I was able to have a REAL Alaskan adventure. I'm ready to go again!