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Carnival Legend 7/12 - 7/19 2016 Trip Report


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We just got back off the Legend from it's July 12 sailing.....

 

I wanted to do a trip report since I read so many myself and found it helpful. I hope to complete it over the next couple of days.....

 

Please feel free to ask any questions as I go along..... :)

 

Bottom Line: We had a wonderful time and Alaska will DEFINITELY get another visit from us!

 

We started planning for this trip in September of 2015 when we went ahead a booked it. Boy did July 2016 seem sooooo far away! LOL

 

We are veteran cruisers....My DH & I have done about 9 cruises and my kids had done two cruise prior to this one. We are both Gold on Carnival.

 

Alaska have been on the bucket list and as my kids are getting older we decided this was the year as my Oldest starts High School next year and the time was passing quickly!

 

A little about us......Mom & Dad and two Daughters aged 11 and 14. Just for the record....the 14 year old NEVER smiles for photos. LOL It's her MO BUT the fact she even was willing to stand in the photos show how much fun she was having. LOL Trust me she had a blast!

 

I work for the Airlines so we flew out on "stand by" from JFK to SEA via MSP. We weren't sure if we would make it all the way in one day so I didn't make a reservations for a hotel until we were inflight to Seattle (Love Wifi!).

 

We were lucky enough to get another reservation at the same hotel we were already booked for Sunday and Monday night.

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We stayed in Seattle for 3 days prior to our cruise at the Homewood Suites Downtown in the Queen Anne area.

 

The hotel was clean and the staff extremely pleasant. We had a suite with two double beds. Each room had a mini kitchen w a full size frig and microwave.

 

The hotel had a free hot breakfast each morning and M - F provided a manager's reception in the evening. Enough food to make an easy dinner and free beer and wine. :)

 

We took a cab from the airport to there and it was $42 plus tip.

 

The area was nice.....it's a short walk to the Space Needle area. About 15 minute. It IS a hilly but we had no problem walking it.

 

There are also some restaurants in the area and a Safeway grocery store about a 10 min walk away.

 

From the Space Needle area it was easy to take the monorail to downtown and pike's market area. (Note: Cash Only for the monorail)

 

If you wish to visit the Space Needle I suggest going first thing in the morning. We went at 8 Sunday morning and there was NO line at all and we went right up.

 

The hotel does have a van that will take you to the port in the morning. It's $7 pp and you must sign up at the front desk. I think a cab would have been cheaper since we had 4 people but we decided just to do the van since it was easy.

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Day 1 Cruise Day...

 

The van picked us and another family at 10:45 am and it was a short drive to the pier.

 

Walking into the port area and here she is....

 

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We had Faster to the Fun and were quickly checked in and waiting in the FTTF seating area in the port by 11:15 am.

 

Not much longer after we sat down boarding began and we were called to board.....

 

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I think we were on board no later then 11:40? It was fast!

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Since we had FTTF our room was open and ready for us.....

 

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The last two cruises we had a balcony.....but this cruise the difference in price between that and an ocean view was several hundred dollars. We decided to go for the ocean view and use the money for excursions. We do NOT regret that decision in any way.

 

We were on deck 1 and felt very little movement....we were not too far from the elevator and it was in the middle of the ship and put us right were we needed to be......I would definitely do an oceanview again and save the money for the excursions!

 

We saw tons of whales from our window and we had plenty of room for the 4 of us. :)

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Our room happened to be right where they were loading supplies....

 

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it was pretty cool to watch. Cases and cases of soda, banana, all kinds of stuff being boarded. :)

 

We had lunch on the Lido Deck and of course, got the first ice cream of the cruise.... :)

 

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We had the Muster Drill on deck and then it was time to set sail.....

 

A few views from our departure from Seattle...

 

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FYI we had Verizon cell service for service hours after setting sail. Just in case anyone wanted to stay in touch for awhile. :)

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So let's talk a little about the ship....

 

We went on the Carnival Legend in 2012 out of Tampa.

 

I loved loved loved this ship! Heck I bought a Legend Key Chain. LOL

 

I still love the lay out of this ship. It's very easy to get around!

 

She is showing her age a bit but nothing major.

 

Probably our only real issue, and even then it wasn't that big a deal, was the amount of time it took for dinner in the dining room. We had YTD and sometimes we would wait 15-30 minutes in line just to get into the dining room then dinner took another 1.5-2 hrs.

 

Not sure what the issue was....wait staff was great. Friendly and attentive. Just seemed to take a long time to complete a meal. Food was great. Nothing we weren't happy with and we never had anywhere we needed to be afterwards so the time wasn't that big of a deal. But if you were trying to make a show or something it could be an issue?

 

We only ate there for dinner. All our other meals we ate on the Lido deck.

 

Having been on the Legend just two years ago, I will say this was NOT a problem? So I'm not sure if it was an Alaska thing? or the Ship? or What? Just something to keep in mind. :)

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As far an entertainment on the ship.....

 

I don't have much to say about that. We don't do shows or a lot of the onboard activities. It's just not our thing.

 

We played a couple games in the casino...cash crane and cash cube....we won NOTHING! I played Bingo. No winning there either! LOL The smoke smell in the Casino was STRONG!! It would give me a headache quickly if I was there too long.

 

Neither of my kids took part in the kids club. My youngest did last time we were on the Legend and all the activities were the same so she didn't see anything she wanted to do.

 

Last time she was very into it and this time not.....but she was 9 and now 11. Very different ages. Plus they are in different groups so they more just hung out together.

 

Laundry.....

 

I did laundry twice on the ship. It's $3.00 to wash and $3.00 to dry. They do sell soap on board but I usually just bring the Pods you can buy at home and bring some dryer sheets.

 

I tended to do laundry VERY early in the mornings (around 5 am) since I'm an early riser in general and an east coast person so I rarely slept past 5. So needless to say there was never a line at those times. LOL

 

Spa/Gym.....

 

None of us used the Gym thought it looked nice. Plenty of treadmills and such. I walked laps on Deck 10 most mornings (1 lap is 1/4 mile according to a sign) and would pass them gym. Never really looked busy. My husband did go to the spa and use the hot tub and sauna. He said both were nice.

 

Pools...

 

The middle pool had a roof them kept closed for the whole trip so it was warmer in there. However the pool itself was chilly! Pretty much only kids were ever in it. LOL My youngest went once on the first day and that was it.

 

Water Slides....

 

They were open but again cold! :)

 

Serenity Deck.....

 

Since I had kids I never really hung out there. I walked thru a couple times when I was out strolling the decks by myself. Usually a lot of people wrapped up in blankets out here.

 

Internet.....

 

I only got the Social Media package on the last day. It was $5. Worked fine for facebook/instagram/etc....However, when I went to use their computers to check in for my flights....geez...SLOW....first time I gave up and left after trying for 30 minutes. I came back later and tried again and finally got all checked in after about 20 minutes. Lots of pax were very frustrated with that.

 

The Naturalist....

 

Michelle was AMAZING!! Make a point to go to her lectures. Fascinating stuff! She is a great speaker and very passionate about Alaska and the wildlife living there. My kids greatly enjoyed it too. When you are traveling up the Fjord she comes over the speakers to point out wildlife as we go along. Turn on the TV in your room to channel 19 and you can hear her. Carnival has a real winner with Michelle! :)

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I agree with most of what you've said so far! I wish we had been able to meet up with M&G, but that never happened. I wasn't sure if your kids would be in the Circle C, because our son did do it. You also seemed to be close to our hotel! LOL! We were at the Four Points Sheraton on Mercer St. I'm working on my report too, just did the Seattle part first. I'm a bit wordy! LOL! ;)

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I agree with most of what you've said so far! I wish we had been able to meet up with M&G, but that never happened. I wasn't sure if your kids would be in the Circle C, because our son did do it. You also seemed to be close to our hotel! LOL! We were at the Four Points Sheraton on Mercer St. I'm working on my report too, just did the Seattle part first. I'm a bit wordy! LOL! ;)

 

LOL I hear ya on the wordy thing....look what I have written so far! LOL

 

I'm still bummed there was no M&G....I looked every day!

 

Thought I was just looking and saw your mini post and it looks like we both did the Glacier Point Wilderness Safari....what time did you go? We were booked on the 7:30 am. We LOVED that one! :)

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Thought I was just looking and saw your mini post and it looks like we both did the Glacier Point Wilderness Safari....what time did you go? We were booked on the 7:30 am. We LOVED that one! :)

 

We did the same one! We had Elyse for the boat ride and we were with Wiley for our tour guide in the canoe. Our son was the obnoxious one! LOL!

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We did the same one! We had Elyse for the boat ride and we were with Wiley for our tour guide in the canoe. Our son was the obnoxious one! LOL!

 

LOL We were on the other boat w Ben. We were the family of four that moved to the other boat to even it up.

 

There weren't any obnoxious kids!! LOL They were all very good. :)

 

Matt was our canoe guide.

 

I thought those boys were amazing!! OMG to be in my 20's again! LOL :)

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Day 2 - Sea Day

 

Today was the Sea Day and we pretty much just hung out and walked around the ship and such. Pretty much just a relaxing day.

 

I really didn't take any photos or stuff that day. :)

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Day 3 - Tracey Arm Fjord - Endicott Arm Fjord

 

So today was the Tracey Arm Fjord which ended up being the Endicott Arm Fjord since Tracey Arm was still filled with too much ice for the cruise ship to enter.

 

In the morning we went to the lecture by the Naturalist Michelle.....

 

She did a slide show and talked about Glaciers and wild life we could end up seeing.....all very interesting stuff!

 

After that we went down to our cabin and hung out. DH visited the sauna and the kids and I turned the TV to channel 19 to listen to Michelle point out any whales we might pass! We saw quiet a few. To realize you are seeing this beautiful animals in their natural environment is amazing!

 

I took this photo from Deck 10 that morning.....look at the line from the cloud break!

 

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When we booked our cruise I had read about the Small Boat Excursion and how wonderful it was....so I booked it right away.

 

Unlike other excursions you book thru the website this one you have to email them to book it and you do not pay for the excursion until you are on the cruise ship.

 

Even thought we were going into Endicott vs. Tracey Arm the small boat excursion was still on and we would get up close to Dawes Glacier.

 

Originally our tour was suppose to be at 11 am but when we received the tickets the first night on the ship the time had been changed to 12:30. We were to meet in the Firebird lounge at 12 noon.

 

At about 12:15 they split the room into two groups and led us down to the boats. Two boats were going out at 12:30.

 

Allen Marine is the company who runs the small boats and they were an excellent operation. Friendly staff and knowledgeable. There is a small snack bar on board with coffee, tea, soda and beer. As well a small gift shop if you wished to purchase anything.

 

There was indoor seating or you could stand outside on the deck. When the boat was stopped they opened the top deck (they would close it when we would move again).

 

My family were pretty much diehards and stayed outside the whole time. LOL

 

Just pushing off from getting off the Legend....

 

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My kids watching the Legend as we leave on the boat....

 

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The Legend pretty much followed behind us thru the Fjord at a slower pace and didn't get as close to the glacier as we did. :)

 

Some views along the way....

 

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The other boat stopped to get ice....

 

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The color of the water is surreal....

 

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Dawes Glacier...

 

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This is as close as the Legend got....

 

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It's cool to see it with ice floating around it. :)

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So we stood on the top deck watching and waiting and watching and finally I got this on video......

 

 

Big Calving of the Glacier.... :)

Edited by nycfa
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It wasn't much longer after that we headed back to the ship.....

 

Hey, Mr. Ice out of our way! LOL

 

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it was an amazing experience and I would highly recommend it. Totally worth the money!

 

This was also the only time I was really cold the whole trip! LOL The wind is so cold while you are parked in front of that glacier. Totally worth it thought to get that video of it calving! :)

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LOL We were on the other boat w Ben. We were the family of four that moved to the other boat to even it up.

 

There weren't any obnoxious kids!! LOL They were all very good. :)

 

Matt was our canoe guide.

 

I thought those boys were amazing!! OMG to be in my 20's again! LOL :)

 

 

Haha! I remember you guys then! LOL! And yes, the kids were all great! As well as those guides. So much fun!

 

And it looks like you were on the opposite boat for the Endicott Arm too! You posted the picture of our boat, with the girl getting the ice from the glacier. I have pictures of your boat with the 2 people leaning over. I know our girl actually went ON the ice! LOL!

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Haha! I remember you guys then! LOL! And yes, the kids were all great! As well as those guides. So much fun!

 

And it looks like you were on the opposite boat for the Endicott Arm too! You posted the picture of our boat, with the girl getting the ice from the glacier. I have pictures of your boat with the 2 people leaning over. I know our girl actually went ON the ice! LOL!

 

Okay you are going to have to post a photo of you guys in your review so I can figure out who you are! LOL I think I know thought? Are you blonde? Pony tail?

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Day 3 - Skagway

 

We had the longest time in port here from 7 am to 9 pm.

 

We decided to book the Glacier Point Wilderness Safari directly thru Carnival.

 

Let me tell you it did NOT disappoint!! We all greatly enjoyed this tour.

 

We were booked on the 7:30 am departure. Our tickets said to meet in the Follies Lounge at 7 am. When we got to the lounge seating was set up by which tour you were taking. Very easy. We sat an waited a bit then they led the groups off the boat.

 

On the dock we were met by a young lady holding our tour sign. She led us further down the dock near the smaller boats. There everyone was told if they needed to use the restroom here on the dock to please do so as there were NO bathrooms on the boats and the ride was about an hour.

 

They split the larger group into two even groups and we when and boarded our boats.....

 

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After a quick safety demo we were on our way.....

 

Our guide was Ben who talked a bit about the area and was open for any questions we had....the discussion was less of a speech but more driven by our Q&A. They did a couple stops along the way to look and photograph waterfalls and any other sites. We were lucky to have a calm day on the water so it was a fairly smooth ride.

 

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Soon we reach the beach where the boat pulled up to the shore and ramps placed onto the front of the boat and we all got off and walked up the beach to a old bluebird school bus to take us to the base camp to be fitted up with boots and life vests for our canoe ride out to the glacier.

 

 

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On the bus ride over to the camp (less then 5 mins) our guides talked to us about the area and what we would be doing. I can not say enough how GREAT these young men were.....funny yet professional. They had everyone laughing. They actually live in a small camp ground out there (they point it out on the drive up) and share their space with bears on occasion! :eek:

 

There was actually bear poop on our walk up from the beach.

 

The guys were entertaining and IMO went out of their way to make everyone comfortable with this adventure.

 

After getting to base camp we all told them our shoe size and they outfitted us with rubber boots and life jackets.

 

We had the option to leave anything we wanted on the bus (we were the ONLY people out there so it wasn't like someone would come along and break into the bus. LOL) so I left my backpack on there bringing just my camera and rainjacket. Most everyone did the same.

 

Then we did a short walk down to the water. It's a path but there are alot of uneven spots with exposed roots and rocks. All very manageable but you do need to watch your step...

 

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Here is Matt our guide.....

 

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Here are the canoes we would be traveling in down at the water.....

 

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They showed us how to get in and out of the canoe without tipping it over (that water is COLD! you don't want to end up in it LOL). Then helped us all board. The water level was VERY high and normally they said they board several rafts at a time but today they could only do one at a time. Upside because the water was to high we didn't have to paddle for long and they could drop in the motor for the rest of the trip. :)

 

One of the rafts leaving...

 

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Have your camera out and ready as you canoe over to the Glacier (BTW this is the Davidson Glacier). This photo was taken from the canoe as we made our way there....

 

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You can see the first canoes already pulling up to the shore. :)

 

After we parked....

 

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Me and the kids walking towards the glacier. Not a bad walk but it's very rocky and you are in rubber boots so take your time! Oh and stop and check out how smooth a lot of the rocks are!

 

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This is my favorite photo and sums up the day.....look at that BLUE ice!

 

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The beauty is amazing and the air is soooooo clean!!

 

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