Although I requested a table for 6, we were given a table for 2 but the Botticelli MDR food was just blah and we never ate there again throughout the cruise. We went to Crown Grill twice, had an excursion Salmon Bake one night and the rest of the time we ate in Cafe Carib, the buffet in the back of the ship. It never was crowded and we saw whales while dining there.
Ketchikan was warm and beautiful at 72 degrees. We just walked off ship to souvenir shops and walked back on to go into jacuzzi. It was a lovely day.
To view the Island Passage, I ordered room service breakfast by 6:30 a.m., put a pool towel over the balcony table and we had a delicious breakfast while seeing the world go by! 7:00 is when they enter the area with all the small ice flows right in front of you. Due to the rain Juneau's been having everything was lush and green. It was a great relaxing morning as we got ready for whale watching and salmon bake buffet later that day. Started pouring but we were ready with thermal underwear, turtleneck long sleeve tops, zippered sweatshirts and heavy jacket with hood and gloves. And we each had an umbrella too. We were in layers but needed every bit for warmth. It was cold on the boat and we saw a few whales but nothing spectacular. The Mendenhall Glacier and whale watching trip had 50 whales right in front of them and people were getting nervous but they got some unbelievable pictures. The highlight for us was the Gold Greek Salmon Bake with a delicious BBQ and entertainment. Pouring but since it was all outside, it was covered and protected from the elements.
Our favorite day was Skagway. We took the coach up to Fraser and the train down to Dredgetown for gold panning and another BBQ buffet. If you take the bus first sit on the starboard side and on the train down, sit also on the starboard side. Train first, port side for bus as well. It was pouring again but we were prepared. On the train they were selling for $15 a hat, book and DVD on the making of the train and gold rush stampeders. So well worth it! Saw more of area on the DVD since it was taken on a clear, sunny day.
We booked Princess to take us to airport since our flight left at 3:00 and that worked out great for $29 per person. Bus was right there, filled it and off we went with no waiting. We sent our luggage straight to our home airport so we were just carrying our overnight bags. There was no charge for this service from Seattle to Palm Springs, CA except for the two small bags which carried our boots, shoes and coats, since our larger bags were free. Plenty of room for all the luggage in the cabin. Thanks to CC I knew to bring a small stapler and attached my AA full itinerary (not just the return home flights) to the form to have the luggage picked up and delivered to home airport. Got our boarding passes and airport tags to attach and put everything out about 8:00 p.m.
My only regret is that we should have gotten off the ship and taken the small ship excursion to view the glaciers. We never got near any snow or ice. Next time!
Enjoy your cruise, wherever you choose! Remember, a rainy day on vacation is better than any day at work!