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Old 06-13-2012, 09:28 AM   #61
lorimay
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Your report is awesome!!!!!

I definitely need to convince the hubby to book Alaska for next summer while we are on the magic in September.

Tracy Arm is breathtaking.
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Old 06-13-2012, 10:41 AM   #62
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Loving your report so far, it's really making me want to do an Alaska cruise
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Old 06-13-2012, 11:14 AM   #63
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Wonderful report so far!
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Old 06-13-2012, 11:49 AM   #64
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OK, now i want to go to Alaska!!!!
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Old 06-13-2012, 09:18 PM   #65
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Enjoying your TR. Makes me that much more excited for our August cruise!
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Old 06-14-2012, 12:09 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luv2Diz View Post
Enjoying your TR. Makes me that much more excited for our August cruise!
Me too. We sail on August 6!
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MAGIC June 20-27, 2009 (Eastern Caribbean) MAGIC June 18-29, 2011 (Med) WONDER August 6-13, 2012 (Alaska) MAGIC September 7-12, 2012 (Canada) FANTASY April 13-20, 2013 (Western Caribbean) ABD Scotland: A Brave Adventure August 4-12, 2013 WONDER May 19-24, 2014 (San Diego to Vancouver) ABD Austria, Germany & Czech Republic July 5-13, 2014 DREAM November 24-28, 2014 (Bahamas) WONDER May 15-17, 2015 (San Diego) B2B with WONDER May 17-20, 2015 (Ensenada) MAGIC June 29-July 10, 2015 (North Norwegian Fjords and Iceland) B2B with MAGIC July 10-22, 2015 (Baltics) with ABD add-on
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Old 06-14-2012, 03:11 PM   #67
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I LOVE,LOVE,LOVE your trip report!!! I showed my husband some of your pictures where you were outside on the boat freezing and that made up his mind that he is taking his heavy winter coat plus layering underneath. He is planning on wearing his coat onto the airplane...with our luck we will be stopped by security for a quick search/body scan. We leave in 38 days for Alaska!!!
Thanks for the wonderful trip report and great pictures!!!
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Old 06-14-2012, 05:34 PM   #68
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Thanks for the great comments everyone
So glad to have to all reading along!!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by AquaDuck1 View Post
I LOVE,LOVE,LOVE your trip report!!! I showed my husband some of your pictures where you were outside on the boat freezing and that made up his mind that he is taking his heavy winter coat plus layering underneath. He is planning on wearing his coat onto the airplane...with our luck we will be stopped by security for a quick search/body scan. We leave in 38 days for Alaska!!!
Thanks for the wonderful trip report and great pictures!!!
AquaDuck1 (aka Laura)
Yes, of course WE only got very cold weather because we did NOT bring heavy jackets. If you bring heavy jackets, your weather will be nice and warm Such is the way of the universe
Regardless, you will be prepared and you will have an amazing time!!!
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Old 06-14-2012, 06:25 PM   #69
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Day five, juneau

I want to go ahead and start JUNEAU while I have a chance!!

Quick preview- today we rented a limo, toured Mendenhal glacier, dressed up for Pirate night, tried out the Taste of Alaska Menu, and watched Toy Story:The Musical.

SO......

Before the trip we researched every port, of course, to find a good excursion for our family. There were lots of amazing things to do in Juneau, but I felt slightly limited by 2 factors- Number one, I wanted to stay with my whole family so I didn't want to pick something that my DS could not do; number 2, the budget simply would NOT allow us to choose something really pricey.

So, in an effort to see as much as possible in an inexpensive way, we decided to rent a limo (The limo was only $20 more than a regular car, and it made the outing feel more "special"). I liked the idea of having a "tour guide" at our beck and call, and basically planned to visit the glacier and then go wherever our driver suggested.

*Note- I have to add, with a burst of jealousy, that my brother and RJ (who have no kids and bigger budgets) did the helicopter ride and dog sled on the glacier, which they said was amazing and life changing, and I'm sure it was. If you are interested in this, they used Coastal Helicopters http://coastalhelicopters.com/ and had no complaints what so ever. But I like to pretend that they just stayed on the ship and played shuffle board all day.

All Ashore time today was 6:30AM
All Aboard time: 2:00PM



Our limo was scheduled for 9AM, so we had a bit of time to sleep in. DS woke up at 7:30, which IS sleeping in for him.
Once again we could not have asked for a more BEAUTIFUL day.


It was sunny and gorgeous outside!


The forecast on the in-room channel said it would be in the upper 40s, but I know for a fact the temp made it up to 57 that day.

DH went up to the buffet and brought us down some breakfast. Then he spilled OJ on my doughnuts, so-
DH went up to the buffet again and brought us down some breakfast.
Thanks DH.

We got ready pretty quickly. My DS was pretty good about entertaining himself while we got ready each day. We had packed a couple of coloring books for him, and several cute books for him to read. One was called Larry Gets Lost in Alaska, which is about a boy and a dog who take a cruise ship to Alaska! Such a perfect book for the trip, and DS LOVED it, along with The Wheedle on the Needle, about the Space Needle Of course he also loved all of the cartoon channels on the TV.

Anyway, at 8:45AM we met up with Mom and Ralph who were joining us in the limo. We left the ship and walked to the end of the dock and saw:


That's our limo! We felt special.
Our driver's name was Judy. She already knew EXACTLY where we wanted to go, from the email I had sent weeks ago. I liked that. We climbed inside and she showed us how to work the heat/air and windows and offered us water and candy. Then we were off!

Here we are in the back of the limo:


A picture of the ship through the limo window:


Judy drove us through town and told us all about the different buildings and history of the place. She knew quite a lot about everything!

Then she drove us out of town and made a stop at this little camping area with an awesome river running through it. We got out for some photos.





It was a short stop because she wanted us to have plenty of time at Mendenhall.
On the way to Mendenhall:


Our first view of the Glacier. Amazing:


When we arrived Judy told us exactly where the best places to go (with a 5 year old and Ralph, who walks with a cane). Obviously we weren't going to be making any amazing hikes, but we would settle for a closer view of the glacier and as much of that fresh air as we could suck up.

We took a trail to a photo spot- it was a nice easy walk. DS took to throwing pebbles into the lake.


You can see some icebergs there in the lake:


We climbed the rocks like we were kids at a playground.


We passed the visitors center, but didn't go in:


The photo spot was awesome.
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Old 06-14-2012, 06:36 PM   #70
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In the photo above, you can see a waterfall in the background. Looks small, right?
Look at the picture below and you can see people standing in front of the waterfall. Still think it looks small?


Everyone said how lucky we were to have a sunny day.


Coming back up the trail.


I would have loved to hike to that waterfall. The sign said it was only a 30 minute walk, but Judy didn't think that Ralph and his cane would have an easy time walking there. We decided not to risk it, but I do think that you should, if you can
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:33 PM   #71
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We wanted to walk some more, so Judy pointed us to the Moraine Ecology Trail. this is the trail you would take to see the salmon. Unfortunately, we were too early in the season for salmon. But we walked the trail anyway and took in the scenery.





There are signs all along the trail that tell you about the salmon. If you are coming at the right time of year, this would be a great trail to walk.




Another look back at the glacier:


We were at the glacier for probably about an hour and a half. We all felt that we could have spent a lot more time there, and someday I hope to come back and try one of the longer trails near the glacier.
Sadly I had to admit that we could not do much more there this day, so we decided to move on.

We had no specific requests for Judy, and not a lot of time left, so she suggested a special place for DS.
She took us to this wonderful little playground with lots of slides and a great view!
Now, I know many of you are thinking, "you came all the way to Alaska to play on a playground?!" Fair enough, but since DS is our only little one and he is growing up so fast, AND he had been SO good all of the times I dressed him up and made him sit quietly and took his picture a hundred times....I really do not regret letting him have his fun that day on that cute little playground. He won't care about playgrounds forever.

It really was cute. Here is the kid-decorated mini maze:


We loved the mountains in the background:


they had tons of slides, rock wall, hopscotch, swings- a kid's dream:


Soon it was time to drive back to town.

Judy took us a different way and showed us some of the shops and restaurants.
Just an interesting building I saw-


Then she dropped us off in town so we could walk around some more.
Bye Judy!


We walked past the Red Dog Saloon-

We didn't go inside but it looked like a lot of fun.

The whole town has trash cans like this so the bears can't get in them.


We walked past several of these stair cases. So we climbed one.


Here is a view from the stairs.


A sign in a shop window:


The Mount Roberts Tram-


We stopped in a couple of souvenir shops that were really fun. We bought some "Husky Poop" (chocolate peanuts) for a friend of mine who likes that kind of silly stuff, and some "Liquid Gold" for me (Chocolate and caramel)

The Disney free shuttle was very easy to find. We waited about 10 minutes to board one and made it back to the ship at about 1:30PM.






For some reason, it was FREEZING cold in the area where we boarded the ship. It was the only time I was cold all day. DH too-
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Old 06-15-2012, 08:57 AM   #72
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I've read great things on here about Judy and her limo...and your trip to Mendenhall is kind of making me wish I'd gone with her instead of the private whale watching trip. That waterfall looks amazing!!

My children would love the playground too and definitely would have talked about it for a long time. Great choice!
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Old 06-15-2012, 11:37 AM   #73
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Did you book the limo through Disney or yourself???
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Old 06-15-2012, 01:47 PM   #74
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That is a cute playground.
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Old 06-15-2012, 03:22 PM   #75
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No need to explain or justify the playground. Once in Paris we spent a few hours watching my then 3 year old play at a playground with all the little Parisian children. One of my best memories watching them all play and get so confused trying to talk to each other. Sometimes that brief routine resets everyone's vacation nerves.

I am loving this report. We'll be sailing at the end of August and I'm using all your notes to help me get ready (i just found out we would be going and am way behind!!)
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