On to Alaska – Boarding the Diamond Princess and Visiting Ketchikan

On Saturday, September 16th we boarded the Princess Cruise’s Diamond Princess at Canada Place in Vancouver. This is our first time on a cruise and this ship will be our home for the next 23 days. This is a “repositioning cruise”, which means that the season for Alaskan Cruises is over and this cruise ship is moving to Asia for a season of cruising south Asia, Australia and New Zealand. Our cruise will be the last Alaskan Inside Passage cruise of the season and then travel on the Asia ending at Tianjin, China.

We have a very nice room on the starboard (right) side of the ship with a balcony. I have never thought I was a “cruise person”, but I think I am converted. So far I’m liking this a lot. I’ll write another blog post on the cruise itself, later in the cruise, but for now here are some pictures of our room and below is a description and pictures of our first port – Ketchikan, Alaska:

After we left Vancouver, the first full day of the cruise (day 9 of 110 on our Trip Around the World) is a “sea day”, no ports to stop at. A nice leisurely day to get settled into the ship.

The second full cruise day, September 16, the Diamond Princess docked at Ketchikan, Alaska. We walked into the town of Ketchikan. A small island town of about 3,000 people scattered along the shore along about 30 miles of roads. Salmon fishing and tourism drive the local economy. We walked over to the Creek Street, (see second photo below), which is the former red light district of Ketchikan.

These are some views of Ketchikan taken from the balcony of our cabin on the Diamond Princess. The floatplane landing below with the red building is the office of Island Wings Air Service, the service on which we booked our flightseeing tour to Misty Fjords.

We took a flightseeing tour to Misty Fjords National Monument Wilderness. Based on recommendations from my Fodor’s Guide to Alaska and Trip Advisor, we booked our flightseeing tour with Island Wings Air Service. The major advantage of this tour company is the opportunity to get out of the plane and walk around on the shore of a lake in Misty Fjords. The flightseeing tours booked through the cruise lines only land on the lake and then take off again after a few minutes on the lake. The scenery was absolutely beautiful. I highly recommend this tour. Go to www.islandwings.com .

It was a short day in Ketchikan, we were back on the ship by 2:00 p.m. and the ship left for our next port – Juneau.

2 replies

  1. You know, I’ve never done a cruise either, but by the looks of your pictures I feel as I could probably manage. Looks fantastic!

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