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Old 09-14-2012, 11:10 PM   #16
LyndaC
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My first cruise was on NCL to Alaska, Glacier Bay, it was fantastic. I'm not a foodie, so can't really comment on that aspect, and I'm not a gambler, so I didn't care for the casino.

Next 3 cruises were on Disney. LOVE cruising DCL, however, having just cruised DCL to Alaska, Tracy Arm, I have to say that in terms of what we saw, I far preferred NCL and Glacier Bay. Both cruises visited Skagway, Ketchican and Juneau, but again, I preferred the spacing of the port visits on NCL.

If all things were equal, I'd pick Disney, however, I think the Alaska experience was far better on NCL.

BTW, here's how much I love Disney Cruises.

I'm a San Francisco native, I work in San Francisco, 2 weeks from now, I'm flying down to LA to board a DCL California Costal Cruise where we will sail to the exotic port of San Francisco and spend 2 days there. (and see a lot of Pixar movies along the way)....
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Old 09-14-2012, 11:11 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tajz90 View Post
I have never sailed Princess, so I can't comment to that, but I can give insight about sailing with an older crowd. We did a NCL Canadian cruise and the guests were all so much older. I hate to say it, but uncomfortably older and we were terribly bored. Now we wouldn't be so bored now, but we're in our early 40s now. We were 30 and under for that particular cruise. We said we would always try to sail with our own age group (mostly). Take it into consideration if need be.

No, I don't hate old people. Please don't hate on me . Oh and not closed minded either. We were young and wanted to find others with similar interests for the days we were on ship.

A few years ago, we went to Alaska on the Norwegian Pearl and it seemed that the passengers were no different than what we saw on our Disney cruises. The kids LOVED the bowling alley and rock climbing wall...and the Cruise Director...they had a blast with him.

I've only gone on one Princess cruise, to the Caribbean....and I liked it well enough. I thought the ship was clean, the crew were friendly..food was good. No complaints at all.
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Old 09-14-2012, 11:21 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LyndaC View Post

BTW, here's how much I love Disney Cruises.

I'm a San Francisco native, I work in San Francisco, 2 weeks from now, I'm flying down to LA to board a DCL California Costal Cruise where we will sail to the exotic port of San Francisco and spend 2 days there. (and see a lot of Pixar movies along the way)....
Too funny!
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Old 09-15-2012, 07:08 AM   #19
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I also had a similar question as the op. We are also considering a cruise to Alaska with our 6 and 8 year olds. Alaska seems so port intensive that I was wondering how much time you have to enjoy the ship? How much time do the kids spend in the clubs? We have sailed DCL 3 times and we are sailing on the Fantasy in November. So we love DCL, but the price of an Alaska cruise, plus all the port adventures is making me think about other lines. If you had to choose another line for Alaska, which ship and why? Also do you just do a cruise or do you add some land tours also. Things that I love about DCL are, family friendly entertainment, kids love the clubs, I feel comfirtable in the restaurants if my children have a moment and act like kids, ect. Thank you for your input
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Old 09-15-2012, 07:37 AM   #20
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We have done many Disney cruises (with and without DD) and two Princess (both without DD). We are in our early 40's and chose the two Princess cruises for the price and the great itineraries. Things we liked about Princess: the price, the itineraries, anytime dining, the pizza (seriously, it's the best!), their up-charge Italian restaurant (worth the splurge), and their 'morning show' done by the cruise director that is shown on a certian channel of your tv every morning (this is certainly a small thing, but a fun way to start the day).

The Princess cruises were 'port heavy', as we only had one day at sea...and that was just fine for us. DH and I would certainly sail Princess again when it's an adult-only trip, and we want to explore new ports. I guess what I'm saying is...we went into the Princess cruises not for the ship and it's on-board entertainment, etc, but for the itineraries and the places we would be visiting...so it was all good.

DD is only 9 years old and still LOVES DCL...the clubs, the characters, the AquaDuck, pretty much everything!...and we still love it too...so when we sail as a family, it will continue to be on DCL for now. So I guess if your primary purpose is to see Alaska as an adults-only vacation, and the prince is right on Princess, go ahead and give it a try!
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Old 09-15-2012, 07:58 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by jiminyC_fan View Post
We took Holland America (same company as Princess) to Alaska.
Just to clarify, HAL and Princess are NOT the same company. They are separate cruiselines under the Carnival Corporation umbrella.

Having sailed both, I like both, but each has its pros and cons, and each offers different ships (obviously) with different amenities, menus, policies, and programming.
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Old 09-15-2012, 08:31 AM   #22
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DD and her husband went on an Alaska cruise this summer - on the RCCL Radiance of the Seas - southbound from seward to vancouver..

she loved every minute of it and said the cruise was every bit as good as DCL and much cheaper.
She thought the entire crew was as nice as could be and the cruise was very well organized as well as tons of fun.

She's hoping to cruise RCCL again soon. She's not planning on going back to DCL.
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Old 09-15-2012, 08:37 AM   #23
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I don't think Alaska cruises are more port-intensive than others, with visits usually to 3 ports and a glacier. If you sail from Seattle and go to Victoria, that's almost always in the evening. The scenery on sea days is definitely more beautiful on Alaska cruises than on most others.

Choose the itinerary first, rather than cruise line or ship. The ports don't differ that much, with most going to Ketchikan, Juneau, and Skagway. HAL tends to go to Sitka rather than Skagway on many of theirs, and they substitute Haines for Skagway on their one-way southbound cruises. The biggest itinerary difference is the glaciers visited. Many go to Tracy Arm Fjord. Fewer go to Hubbard Glacier or Glacier Bay. DCL has been very good about allowing time to get to the glaciers at the end of Tracy Arm Fjord, but other cruise lines often miss it because there's a lot of ice and they run out of time. My personal opinion of the best itinerary is Princess's southbound cruises from Whittier to Vancouver that go to both Hubbard Glacier and Glacier Bay: http://www.princess.com/find/cruiseD...lterBy=&order=

I have been on 2 roundtrip cruises from Seattle and 2 one-way northbound cruises followed by independent land trips. If HAL Amsterdam were still doing their 14-night roundtrip from Seattle, that would be my choice for a roundtrip cruise. If you choose a one-way, spend time in Alaska before or after the cruise.
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Old 09-15-2012, 08:43 AM   #24
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i should add why DD picked the cruise she did.

first of all, she wanted one way so that she could spend time in alaska..

then she decided on RCCL because they go to hubbard glacier as well as 4 port stops.

Princess goes to hubbard glacier and glacier bay and has 3 port stops...

DD wanted more port stops and didn't mind giving up glacier bay to get an extra port stop....she really didn't want two days of glacier cruising..
she wanted to get out and do as many excursions as possible (she did at least 2 excursions at each port)..

i just remembered, she also picked the southbound radiance itinerary over the northbound as the ports stops are longer on the southbound cruise.

as the PP said, you should pick the itinerary and then the ship..
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Old 09-15-2012, 12:01 PM   #25
the kids
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Quote:
Originally Posted by disneyholic family View Post
i should add why DD picked the cruise she did.

first of all, she wanted one way so that she could spend time in alaska..

then she decided on RCCL because they go to hubbard glacier as well as 4 port stops.

Princess goes to hubbard glacier and glacier bay and has 3 port stops...

DD wanted more port stops and didn't mind giving up glacier bay to get an extra port stop....she really didn't want two days of glacier cruising..
she wanted to get out and do as many excursions as possible (she did at least 2 excursions at each port)..

i just remembered, she also picked the southbound radiance itinerary over the northbound as the ports stops are longer on the southbound cruise.

as the PP said, you should pick the itinerary and then the ship..
Did you daughter travel with children and if so what ages? Thank you
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Old 09-15-2012, 12:12 PM   #26
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I've done one Princess Cruise (Mexican Riviera) and thought it was great. They had good shows, great food, and stellar service. The ship was nice and had plenty of space and lots of nice indoor areas with great views (MR in December can be pretty chilly). I know they have been in Alaska a long time, and it sounds like they have a good product up there.

All my Alaska cruises have been on HAL. I love HAL, but it is generally an older crowd, so less nightlife if you are looking for that (and smaller kids clubs). That being said the food is great, we LOVE HAL service, lots of space on the ships and they do Alaska right (salmon bakes on deck, blankets all around, hot cocoa -others may do this as well, but I've only done HAL to AK, so ai can't compare).

I would strongly suggest a cruise that does Glacier Bay, and if possible a one-way so you can add time in Anchorage/Denali. We did glacier trekking near Anchorage (without the expense of a helicopter flight to get there) and spent a few days in Denali, which were some of the highlights of the trip.
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Old 09-15-2012, 01:47 PM   #27
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Did you daughter travel with children and if so what ages? Thank you
no, she and her husband were on their honeymoon, but she said there were many families with children on the cruise.
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Old 09-15-2012, 06:45 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by hrhdhd View Post
Just to clarify, HAL and Princess are NOT the same company. They are separate cruiselines under the Carnival Corporation umbrella.

Having sailed both, I like both, but each has its pros and cons, and each offers different ships (obviously) with different amenities, menus, policies, and programming.
My point was that they are all under the same corporation that being the Carnival Corporation which also includes Carnival Cruise Line. I guess I should have worded it different but the jest was still there. I found it funny that Princess picked us up at the Fairbanks Airport and we used their bus again for an excursion. The people on the bus were cruising both Princess and HAL.
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Old 09-15-2012, 06:53 PM   #29
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I also had a similar question as the op. We are also considering a cruise to Alaska with our 6 and 8 year olds. Alaska seems so port intensive that I was wondering how much time you have to enjoy the ship? How much time do the kids spend in the clubs? We have sailed DCL 3 times and we are sailing on the Fantasy in November. So we love DCL, but the price of an Alaska cruise, plus all the port adventures is making me think about other lines. If you had to choose another line for Alaska, which ship and why? Also do you just do a cruise or do you add some land tours also. Things that I love about DCL are, family friendly entertainment, kids love the clubs, I feel comfirtable in the restaurants if my children have a moment and act like kids, ect. Thank you for your input
We had 4 ports in 7 days, plus the glacier day. We were on Celebrity. While I had no kids in our group, I did make a point of talking to a mom who had 2 boys hopping in and out of the hot tub. She said that her kids LOVED the kid programming. It had a different theme each day. They had an inside pool with signs up indicating that due to the weather, kids would be allowed in this area between the hours of X and Y. Other times, it was an adult area.
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Old 09-15-2012, 09:01 PM   #30
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I got married on a Princess cruise. The age group was definitely older, we felt we were always the youngest people around, constantly sitting with people during lunch/breakfast that were old enough to be our grandparents.

The ship wasn't too impressive, didn't have as much to do. Shopping was pretty limited and there was nothing like mini golf and so on. But the service was terrific and the prices were pretty good.
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