Although I’ll never do justice to the beauty of Alaska, I can’t avoid blogging about such an amazing experience as our Alaska cruise.
To Cruise or Not to Cruise? Although I’ve been hearing raves about cruises from everyone around me, I never really thought I was the cruise type. But a cruise is actually a great family vacation. It offers a good balance of the luxury hotel experience and the beautiful nature experience. Everyone in the family can do his or her own thing, and I never had to worry about where my kids were.
Selecting the right cruise line is critical. While they’re probably all similar, some are more geared towards “fun,” which is not for me. I didn’t want loud pop music blaring whereever I went or peppy activities that would make me roll my eyes. On Celebrity, there were plenty of activities, but there was also plenty of quiet space. You could take a cha-cha lesson, play bingo or Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader, or go to a flower arranging demonstration, but you could also grab a cup of tea and read or watch the scenery go by. There was also a naturalist on board who gave two funny but very informative talks every day.
Cruises offer excess – more food than you would ever want to eat, but also nice amenities like rolled towels in the pool area and blankets on the lounge chairs. Whatever you need is right there in abundance. The service is abundant as well. There were about 900 staff people for 1,900 passengers. If you set down a dish or a wet towel, it would be cleared very quickly. The ship was always immaculate.
Alaska Some people cruise for the luxury experience, but for us, the destination was key. Alaska was an ideal cruise destination. Because it is relatively remote, it doesn’t seem like it would be easy to visit other than on a cruise. I wouldn’t want to take a cruise to the Mediteranean for example, because I’d rather see the Mediteranean from the countries and towns themselves, eating in small, local restaurants rather than from a generic cruise ship. But Alaska was great. It was as if Mother Nature conspired with Celebrity Cruise Lines to give us incredible scenery as the afternoon’s entertainment. One day it was the Inland Passage, a narrow strait that seemed impossibly small for a cruise ship to pass through.
Another day, it was whale watching. The coup de grace was the Hubbard Glacier, which we watched from the helipad (open to passengers only on this day) for hours.
Sea lions (or are they seals?) near Hubbard Glacier
The pictures speak for themselves. Nothing more need be said. I wonder how a cruise to the Panama Canal would be………