Celebrations International Travel Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Alaska

What’s the difference between building Disney Cruise Line‘s Disney Fantasy and the Disney Dream?  Frank de Heer, VP of New Ship Development for Disney Cruise Line and Philip Gennotte at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany share their thoughts during construction of the new ship.  More

I wanted to share this video with you, for which Princess Cruises simply writes in its description, “We hope this ‘Relaxation Minute’ will help you take a moment in your day to relax, unwind and escape completely!  Read More

This episode of Princess Cruises‘ video diary gives cruisers a glimpse into the Engine Control Room and various technical aspects of running a cruise ship.  I think the interviews are a good way to showcase different perspectives in cruise ship operations.  I especially like the information they shared about environmental benefits for Alaska.

Princess Cruises has just released brand-new videos showcasing their Alaska cruises and cruisetours.  A cruisetour is a vacation that combines a 7-night Voyage of the Glaciers cruise (sailing Alaska’s Inside Passage and Glacier Bay) with a land-based tour of your choice:  A great way to see the wonders of Alaska!

 

 Contact us to take advantage of special reserved cruise pricing on Princess Cruises’ Alaska 2011 sailings today!

I hear Alaska referred to in many ways as a destination:  Alaska is a great place for families.  Alaska is great for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.   People travel to Alaska to see the “Last Frontier,” the unspoiled natural beauty that isn’t found in most places anymore.

These might all sound like cliches, but the fact of the matter is that while no destination can be all things to all people, Alaska truly does offer something for just about everyone.

Here are a few of my personal favorites, listed by the type(s) of travelers to whom they are mostly geared:

For Those Who Prefer Sightseeing and/or Less Physically Demanding Activities:

Ketchikan by Horse-Drawn Trolley  Mendenhall Glacier, Juneau, Alaska

Motorcoach Tour of Ketchikan + Visit to Totem Bight State Park

Mendenhall Glacier Tour + Salmon Bake (Juneau)

Mount Roberts Tramway (Juneau)

Klondike Summit & Suspension Bridge (Skagway)

Klondike Highway Drive & Caribou Crossing Lunch (Skagway)

Skagway’s Original Streetcar

White Pass Summit Train Ride (Skagway)

Double-Decker Bus Tour in Victoria, B.C.

For Culinary Enthusiasts:

View of Skagway

Creek Street in Ketchikan

Victoria Pub Tour

City Lights, Wine & Chocolate (Victoria)

Grand Victoria & High Tea at the Empress Hotel

Alaskan Chef’s Table (Ketchikan)

Wilderness Exploration & Crab Feast (Ketchikan)

Salmon Bake (most commonly experienced in Juneau, although available in other ports)

Alaska Cooking School + Beer Tastings (Juneau)

Alaska Garden Gourmet Culinary Tour (Skagway)

Delectable Jewell Gardens (Skagway)

Taste of Skagway

Nature Lovers & Photographers:

See and photograph bears and other wildlife in Alaska

See and photograph bears and other wildlife in Alaska

Rainforest Wildlife Sanctuary (Ketchikan)

Coastal Wildlife Cruise (Ketchikan)

Bear Watch (Ketchikan)

Dog Sled Summer Camp (Juneau)

Whale Watching & Wildlife Quest or Evening Whale Quest (Juneau)

Photo Safari by Land & Sea (Juneau)

Alaska Nature & Wildlife Expedition – Scenic Cruise + Wildlife Search (Skagway)

Long-Horned Sheep

Long-Horned Sheep

Eagle Preserve Wildlife River Adventure – Scenic Cruise to Haines + Jet Boat Cruise & Meal at the Preserve (Skagway)

For Families with Children:

Totems & Lumberjack Combo (Ketchikan)

Bering Sea Crab Fisherman’s Tour (Ketchikan)

Menhall Glacier & Salmon Hatchery Tour (Juneau)

Gold Panning (commonly in Juneau or Skagway)

Jewell Gardens – Take a walk through the gardens.  The kids will especially enjoy seeing the model railroad on display. (Skagway)

Enchanting Buchart Gardens (Victoria)

For Active Travelers:

Rainforest Canopy Ropes & Zipline Park (Ketchikan); similar excursions also available in Skagway

Back Country Jeep & Canoe Safari (Ketchikan)

Sled Dogs in  Yukon

Sled Dogs in Yukon

Alpine Zip & Glacier Adventure (Juneau)

Bike & Tram Elevation Sensation (Juneau)

Horseback Riding in Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Park (Skagway)

Klondike Rock Climbing & Rappelling (Skagway)

There are also numerous opportunities to enjoy dog sledding, kayaking, canoeing, hiking, snorkeling, biking, fishing and other active pursuits in Alaska.  The sky’s the limit, literally!

For Culture Enthusiasts:

Saxman Native Village (Ketchikan)

Totem Poles

Authentic Totem Poles

Potlatch Park & Heritage Tour (Ketchikan)

Liarsville Experience (Skagway)

Glassblowing Experience at Jewell Gardens (Skagway)

Skagway’s Custom Classic Cars

Waterfront Walking Tour (Victoria)



These are just a few ideas for the many ways you might enjoy spending your time in port on your Alaskan cruise.  While many cruise lines offer similar shore excursions, some experiences may be unique to the individual cruise lines.  Contact us for more information or to book your own Alaskan cruise vacation!


As a follow-up to my post on the Princess Cruises to Alaska Available at Reduced Rates, I’d like to let our readers know that these special reduced rates are available on select 2010 sailings for a limited time.

Unfortunately, we are not able to provide quotes via our blog, since every quote we send out to clients is tailored to the travelers’ specific needs and preferences, such as travel dates, preferred stateroom accommodations and cruising style, just to name a few.

To request a travel quote of any kind, please contact our agency.

In upcoming posts, I will provide more insight on how and why pricing and availability are constantly changing in the world of travel.

Celebrations International Travel is dedicated to serving your global travel needs.

I just participated in a live Webinar with Princess Cruises, and wanted to share with you some of the most notable enhancements to the Princess guest experience.   Of course, this is a brief list and is by no means all-encompassing:

– All of the food served in Vines Wine & Seafood Bar and the International Cafe are now free, including sushi and tapas!  The International Cafe has a baker’s oven, so every morning you’ll enter the Piazza area to the smell of fresh baked goods.

– Waffle stations and complimentary lemonade are now offered in the Lido buffet.

– All staterooms have WiFi access, and the rates are the same as what they charge in the Internet Cafe.

– The Pub Lunch offered onboard is free and very popular!

– A complimentary breakfast is available to Suite guests in Sabbatini’s Restaurant featuring the full breakfast menu in addition to a number of specialty items.

– Movies Under the Stars are now available fleet-wide, featuring first-run movies, blankets to keep you warm on cool nights, and free popcorn.

– Misting stewards on the ships’ top decks will offer guests sprayers filled with Evian water to keep them cool, and cool face towels are now offered at the gangway in every port of call.

– The new Princess stateroom design is being rolled out, featuring lighter colors, flat-screen TVs, bedding upgrades.

– Suite guests now have access to priority room service.

– The popular Ultimate Ship Tour has been implemented fleet-wide.

– A new Ultimate Theatre Night experience will be introduced at a cost of $50.00 per couple, to include box theater seating, chocolates, a bottle of premium champagne, use of opera glasses, and a souvenir photo in your theater box.

To learn more about Princess and all of its other great ship features and itineraries, contact Celebrations International Travel.  Our agents are Princess Commodores (aka Princess Certified Experts)!

Watch for our special Princess Alaska group rates to be posted soon:  A great way to save on individual bookings!

This is an article I wrote that was published today by Travel Research Online, a resource for travel professionals.   I write columns for consumers as well as industry-related articles whenever possible.

Enjoy!

A Travel Pro Dares to Dream
June 26th, 2009 . by Adrienne Mitra

As travel agents, much of our time is spent planning clients’ trips, solving logistical challenges, and researching.  I am often drawn to itineraries or locales my clients choose, resulting in a long list of “someday” trips I’d like to take.  When it comes to my “dream trip”, there is no question:  a cruise around the world, complete with a land tour component in each major city.
My goal for this trip would be to experience the countries, cultures, histories, peoples and cuisines of the world first-hand, not just to sightsee.  With that in mind, I have a strong preference for shore excursions that provide travelers with a tangible experience to treasure, rather than whirlwind bus tours that leave travelers with little more than a panorama of discombobulated images. Unfortunately, working in a full land tour in each area is next to impossible, but since I am dreaming…

I wish I could combine all the wonderful ways to explore Alaska into a single tour.  In Hawaii, I imagine an inter-island tour encompassing the sunrise over Mount Haleakala, touring the natural wonders of Molokai, an authentic Hawaiian luau, and leisure time on Poipu Beach.  Next would be visits to the pristine islands of the South Pacific.  In Australia and New Zealand, apart from seeing the Great Barrier Reef, the Outback and the major city highlights, I would tour some of the best estate wineries, visit Kangaroo Island, and witness the ritual of the fairy penguin parade on Philip Island.

After that, my tour of exotic Asia, land of my family’s heritage, would begin.  I would immerse myself in all the unique sights, events, culinary delights, and possibilities for one-of-a-kind experiences the Asian countries have to offer.

Continuing westward, I would want to visit my husband’s native India. To avoid extensive overland travel, I would insist on flying to the most popular destinations from the port city and touring fully escorted, possibly requiring a multi-night stay in each given city.

The opulence of modern Dubai, navigating through the Suez Canal, and visiting the ancient wonders of Egypt would all present opportunities for new adventures, the conclusion of which would be our entry into the Mediterranean.  Having traveled extensively in this region, I would plan more unique, less touristy experiences.  For example, enjoying authentic paella cooked over an open fire on a beach in Spain or a walk through a lavender field in Provence.

Sailing north, I would like to spend a significant amount of time exploring northern Europe, Scandinavia, the Baltics, and Russia.  I would be tempted to debark from our oceanliner in Bergen, and take Hurtigruten’s 12-day round-trip voyage to experience the Norwegian Fjords, no matter what time of year.  And when it comes to Russia, I’m not sure the overnight in St. Petersburg would do it justice, especially during White Nights.

Owing to the fact that I would eventually have to come home, after concluding the tour of Europe, I would set sail back across the Atlantic to Nova Scotia.  Hopefully I would arrive in time for the fall foliage, which I haven’t seen in years.  Then it’s down the eastern seaboard, paying homage to my childhood origins in the south before heading to parts of South America for experiences new and different, then transiting through the Panama Canal, and finally ending my journey back in Los Angeles.

Would this be a dream trip or my ultimate challenge as a travel professional?  Both.  As there is no single supplier or cruise that can offer this type of voyage, most of this trip would have to be pieced together—if it even could be. But a girl can dream, right? And, should something like this ever come to fruition, I believe  I would be my own toughest client indeed.

Adrienne Mitra is the owner of Celebrations International Travel, Inc., an independent agency focused on serving a number of niche markets, including culinary travel, cruises, tours, and group travel. Phone:  (480) 272-6020


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This is blog based on the experiences and interests of travel agency owners Adrienne and Agni Mitra. Through our blog entries, we will share our travel experience and expertise. We will also have other entries of interest to inspire your travels.

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