Alaska cruise pre-trip notes and planning

Check-in Sunday 12-3 PM. Depart 4 PM. Sea day all of Monday.

Ketchikan

Tuesday, arrive 6:30 AM, depart 4:30 PM. Port is about 2 miles from the heart of town as shown here (no less than 4 cruise ships in the lower right!). Looks like a good place to try to rent a plane — currently looking into that option, but, not holding my breath for it. If that doesn’t pan out, Ketchikan has 3 bus routes, and a route map. All three routes go by the docks and cost a $1 to ride. We printed the route map and will bring with us. Bus starts at roughly 7 AM and goes all day. Each route runs once per hour.

Totem Bight State Park looks like a great way to get away from the tourists.  A package tour is offered by Princess, but, I’d rather do it on our own. Take the north-bound Blue Bus out of town and it’s the last stop on the route before it head back into town.

Here’s the museum info for Ketchikan. Tongass Historical Museum looks interesting and is a few blocks from the dock.  Saxman and historic Creek St is an easy walk from the boat and looks like a good place to mosey around.

If those options don’t sound interesting, we can just hop on any bus a go till we find some place interesting to jump off.

Juneau

Arrive Wednesday 1:30 PM, depart 10:00 PM. Sunset is 7:46 PM. The pier is quite a ways from the heart of Juneau, and this makes it tough to do things outside of the cruise offerings.

  • Tram to Mount Roberts: Official web site (but, I think it’s old). Try here for a more up-to-date one. $25/per, (Maia free), pier side. We can purchase these on-site, but, for $1 more, we might as well get the tickets sent to our room.
    • 490 South Franklin Street, Juneau, AK 99801
    • Go on self guided hike around the mountain when up top.
    • There’s restaurant at the top to grab a snack, but, we are thinking go back to the ship for dinner.
  • The other option that is interesting to us is Tour 014: Glacier View Bike & Brew. It’s $89, and includes beer and snack. The only problem is I don’t think Maia is allowed to go as we’d have to arrange a kiddie seat on the bike, and who knows if they can accommodate that. If you are interested in this, let us know and we’ll call and find out if kiddie seats are available.

Skagway

Arrive Thursday, 6:00AM, depart 5:00 PM. James Lileks said it was one of the better ports, but he’s an architecture freak, so that’s how he judges place. The town is TINY and the port is very nearby. I think it’s the long dock on the lower left as seen here. The town has a website.

Valerie really wants to do tour Garden and Gourmet Tour (017) for the hands on cooking part. I’m not all that interested in it. It goes from 1:30 to 4:30.

The Klondike Dredge would be fun to see if it weren’t a total tourist trap complete with characters in period dress. Never mind the $37 admission.

Sockeye Cycle rents bikes$14 for 2 hours, and $25 for 4. No reservations taken. We could bike around and check out the town. The town is only 2 miles long — wouln’t take much on bike.

Friday is a sea day.

Victoria

Arrive Saturday at 5:00PM, depart at midnight. Sunset is 7:30.

Valerie and I were thinking about doing the “Ghosts and Graveyards” walking tour (#014, $39), because of the randomness of it. The thought was to eat an early dinner on the boat, do the tour and then find a pub to belly up to and then stumble back to the boat. Maybe we’ll just skip the tour and we can put together our own pub tour :)

Just found several self-guided walking tours: the 45 minute “Old Victoria and China Town” tour looks interesting. There are 2 other tours linked on the left. The Canoe Club / Knucklehead Brewing on 450 Swift is along the walking tour. We should catch a cab to the heart of town — it’s 1.5 miles to the start of the walk, or 2 miles to the brewery as seen here. Maybe have a nice walk there, and then cab back? Victoria Taxi: (888) 842-7111.

Saturday: Arrive back to Seattle at 7:00AM.

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