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Discovering Alaska III: Ketchikan, Alaska

Exploring Alaska's "First City"

Leaving Canada behind, our first full day on the Diamond Princess was a relaxing day at sea. A Sea Day at the beginning of a cruise is a wonderful opportunity to relax from the stress of traveling to the embarkation port and you have time to explore the ship and participate in onboard activities. The Diamond Princess had tons of thing to do, with covered and uncovered pools, the Lotus Spa, Grand Casino, several bars and restaurants including a 24 hour buffet, Seminars at Sea, television and movie presentations and all kinds of other events all day long. This first day of the cruise also included Formal Night so my husband and I had the entire day to get ready for the evening festivities. We chose Early Seating for dinner, so we would have the same dining room table and table mates for the entire week. Dinner that night was a fun and festive affair that included delicious food and eight wonderful dinner companions who were all from the United Kingdom. After dinner we wandered down the Promenade Deck, in and out of the nightclubs and the casino before the big event of the evening, the Captain's Champagne Waterfall Party that included free champagne and cocktails. Finally retiring to our cabin later that evening, we looked forward to arriving in Ketchikan the next day.

The next morning I was up early and on the balcony to watch the ship docking in Ketchikan. The weather was beautiful! So much warmer than I expected, with a sunny blue sky. Ketchikan was a beautiful picturesque town and we docked right in the middle of it. Ketchikan is located along the shores of Alaska's Inside Passage within the heart of the sixteen million acre Tongass National Forest. The community is comprised of three islands, Revillagigedo, Gravina and Pennock and transportation between them requires a boat or ferry ride across the Tongass Narrows. Home to 13,700 year around residents, Ketchikan is one of "America's Top 100 small arts communities". Ketchikan has an impressive variety of shops and galleries that feature work by many of the island’s resident artists and an assortment of souvenir items and unique gifts that make shopping one of the popular things to do there. I had reserved an excursion for the afternoon, so the morning was free for us to explore the town and buy some gifts to take home.

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We walked off the ship right into town and down the street to a large store to buy some Alaskan gifts and apparel. I found a great hat to wear in case of rain and a couple of Alaska shirts to take home. We spent the rest of the morning sightseeing and window shopping until time to meet back at the ship for our excursion. At noon we met up with other passengers for the short walk to a restaurant for our "Alaskan Chef's Table" excursion. What a wonderful experience that was! Our small group shared a private dining room and sampled fresh Alaska seafood, regional dishes and dessert, all prepared by the Chef while we waited and looked out at the beautiful coastline. Leaving the restaurant 2 hours later, my husband and I slowly walked back to the ship enjoying the fresh sea air and stunning Alaska scenery. It was a fantastic start to our Alaska cruise and I could not wait to see more!

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Coming up, a visit to Juneau, Alaska and my first Glacier up close and personal. To Be Continued......

Gerrilyn Grant Gipson Esq.

President/Owner
MEETINGS AND EVENTS UNLIMITED
Meetings & Events Unlimited Travel Services

Posted by Gerriv 08:39

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