1. Arrive at the port terminal to board a little after it opens. When the cruise port opens for boarding there is a huge mass of people trying to get on board. Instead of arriving right when the cruise port opens we like to arrive an hour or so later. We were able to walk right through the boarding process with no wait time.
2. Pick up every brochure and shopping packet you see in the Seattle port terminal. They are filled with amazing coupons you can use at each of the port of calls. I saved so much money and was able to pick up some really cute trinkets for free by having these tour books.
3. Pack warm clothes and then add a few more to your suitcase. We packed hats and gloves for the trip but somehow forgot scarves and warm parkas. I would have paid a lot of money for a nice scarf the day we cruised Glacier Bay. You want to be outside checking out the scenery but it can be super cold and windy. Having layers on gives you the chance to be prepared and warm during the day.
4. The early bird gets the whale. This is what the naturalist on the boat kept telling us. He said to set you alarm and make sure you are out on the deck in the early mornings to see whales. I wish we would have listened to him because all of the major whale sighting were while we were still sleeping.
5. Bring comfortable walking shoes.
Most of the cities visited during the Alaska cruise are really easy to get to from the cruise ship terminal. Skagway is about a 10-15 minute walk from where our boat docked. Ketchikan you are literally docked right next to town. Juneau is about a 10-15 minute walk from where our boat docked.
6. They do not announce that you can disembark the boat on the open deck area. Make sure you are inside the boat and can hear when you can disembark. We sat for about a half an hour on the top deck confused as to why we had not heard an announcement. One of the deck crew finally told us there is a noise law in Alaska that prevents them from making announcements on the open deck.
7. Try at least one new food during your cruise vacation. One of the best things about cruising is the food. You can try anything you want without worry about how expensive it is going to be. If you do not like it you don’t have to worry. The staff have seen it all and will not be offended if you do not like the food and are happy to bring you something new.
8. Have fun and relax! I am a perpetual worker. I am always thinking about blog posts, social media and well work. I really tried to relax during our cruise and turn off my brain. It is so much fun to just soak up the beautiful scenery and atmosphere of Alaska. There is truly no place in the world quite like Alaska.
9. Check out our blog posts on Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan, The Golden Princess, Cruising Glacier Bay and Driving to the Yukon to see some of the amazing adventures you can having during your Alaska Cruise.