When I Went: June 2011
Was That the Best Time of Year to Go? We went in the summer, which is obviously the best and only time they run cruises to Alaska. It was wonderful — especially with the heat of this past summer — to get away and wear ugg boots and a fleece.
Why I Went There: My parents took us as a surprise after they spent all summer watching Sarah Palin’s reality show.
Who Went With Me? My parents, my brother, my husband, and myself.
We Stayed Here: We went on a Norwegian Cruise and had a balcony and indoor stateroom.
You Won’t Want to Miss: When cruising, definitely get a balcony stateroom and take binoculars. There was a ton of wildlife to be seen. We could have spent all day on the balcony spotting animals.
Eat Here: Cruises are known for their food, but at port the seafood was wonderful. I think my mom just about died over the fresh Alaskan king crab. All the stops are small towns, and it’s easy to figure out where to eat.
Play Here: Off the boat, there wasn’t a ton of activity. There were excursions, of course, but most of them involved getting an even better view of the scenery. Definitely an experience.
If I Went Again: There is no way to know how to pack, so I think you’d do it differently no matter what. I probably would have taken a Royal Caribbean cruise (we have cruised with them many times and liked it more than Norwegian) and wouldn’t have packed a swimsuit. The commercials with the people sunbathing by a glacier are not realistic.
How Did You Get There From Dallas? We flew to Seattle and boarded the boat there.
Other Tips For Fellow Travelers: It’s something everyone should experience once. The glaciers and scenery are breathtaking, and you would never see anything like it anywhere else. It was a nice week in the cool weather to relax. I prefer the beach, so I can’t say I’d do it every year, but it’s definitely something I’m glad I did.