Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Grand Princess Alaska Cruise - Ketchikan

Just after six a.m. a  glance out our cabin window reveals we are about to dock in Ketchikan, Alaska. We throw ourselves together and hustle to an upper deck of the Grand Princess to shoot photos of our arrival. Stepping outside, the cold and wind startle us awake. A cold drizzle welcomes us to port, but undaunted we document our arrival.

Port of Ketchikan Alaska from The Grand Princess

We head back inside for a warm breakfast and coffee to fortify ourselves for the day ahead.
Grand Princess Horizon Court Breakfast Buffet

About two hours later, we bundle up in our sweaters and windbreakers and begin our visit to Ketchican. As we walk the ramp on to the dock rain pelts us. I notice a ship security person standing in a large, clear plastic guard house that resembles a vertical aquarium. They are prepared for the weather, we are not. We don't don't do many cold weather activities where we live, so we come ashore ill prepared. We did bring hats, gloves and umbrellas so we charge into the weather with abandon. Within steps of the dock my umbrella inverts itself in protest. My camera hides in an interior pocket, coming out only when I jump into shelter. We head into town ducking into local stores selling souvenirs, and of all things, warm jackets!  We spot a couple fleece lined jackets with Alaska on the chest and are relieved that they are only $20 a piece, they really could have hosed us but kindly they didn't. I feel like the jackets should be monogrammed  "tourist"  but compassionately just say Alaska. We head up to a restaurant that was recommended to us but at this early hour it is not open. We wander over to the Tongas Historical Museum and gladly paid the $2 admission to get out of the rain. Frankly, this is the best entertainment value we have seen in a long time!  We shoot pictures of the displays and find out that Ketchikan averages over fifteen feet of rain a year! A stream to the back of the museum testifies to that. I see a totem pole that sort of looks like me, maybe a distant family member?
Totem - Tongas Historical Museum Ketchikan Alaska

Ketchikan Alaska

Tongas Historical Museum Ketchikan Alaska

Tongas Historical Museum Ketchikan Alaska

After a fun filled rainy visit to Ketchikan, we head back to the ship happy and notice many of our fellow passengers are wearing "Alaska" jackets. I use our wet clothes as a motivator to purchase a new "all weather' camera on board the Grand Princess. After a bit of charging I head up top to give it a try. The weather is still wet and windy but I am now prepared in my new Alaska jacket and am armed with my new camera. Weather be damned!
Grand Princess Stern Pool Ketchikan Alaska
 After our exciting day I expected I would not be prepared for a busy evening but surprisingly we are energized. Our cocktails are expertly mixed at the Crooners Bar before another great dinner in the DaVinci Dining room.I have fried fish and Avril the Tandoori Shrimp. We watch a comedy show and then visit D.J. Ryan in Club One Five for a little late night boogie. Maybe it is the Alaska vibe that makes us feel young!
Dinner DaVinci Dining Room Grand Princess


Zoomie said...

Your Alaska jackets remind me of all the sweatshirts sold in Fisherman's Wharf to all the tourists who think San Francisco is like Southern California. Glad you had fun.

Greg said...

Zoomie- Exactly! What we took with us would have been great for S.F. but not here. Everyone kept saying "you should have been here last week it was close to seventy."

Chilebrown said...

Ketchikan sounds like a game Arte Johnson played with Ruth Buzzi on the park bench.
That typewriter looks like the one I learned to type on.
Your new sweatshirt will bring back all your wonderful memories. Nothing wrong with that.

cookiecrumb said...

Too bad about the weather that day. It looks like a town I'd love to explore, maybe even indulge in tourist crap!

Greg said...

Chilebrown- That was a funny show. The Alaska gear has a permanent spot with our picnic gear for Bay Area micro climates.The museum was an unexpected treat.
Cookiecrumb- I think the rain enhanced our experience. We barely scratched the surface of Ketchikan. Planning the next visit already.

cedarslodge said...

Reviewing a cruise line is not easy as most people on board are having fun, and on a cruise people generally tend to overlook petty shortcomings. Moreover, most existing cruises have been around for more than a decade, and hence they have already perfected most of their shortcomings.

Click Here