A Cruise Skeptic Sails to Alaska
When my stepsister and family proposed this trip, I initially thought I would pass. I wasn’t sure that ocean cruising would be my style, especially since I feared I would be flitting through points of interest more so than experiencing them. I also wasn’t sure what there was for me to experience. Scenery and wildlife are nice and all, but nice doesn’t drag me on a half day flight across the continent just to look at it. I needed an “it” factor, a hook – a critical You Had to Be There aspect that I can’t get from watching a documentary.
And so I began to research in hopes of finding that hook. That same group of travelers had joined me on a November 2013 trip to China, one of my main historical and cultural interests. We all had a blast. It was fair trade to fully consider an opportunity for more friends and family fun – to give others’ dream destination a similar chance to intrigue me.
I certainly was intrigued. Cruising is an efficient route between cities nestled up against unspoiled wilderness, launching points for excursions to indulge the Outdoorsy Action Girl streak that has spurred me into abandoned turnpike tunnels, a crumbling paper mill, and the smoldering town of Centralia. Hiking! Biking! River rafting! Glacier trekking via helicopter – which officially flipped the Maybe to a Hell Yes.
Spousal Unit, also initially skeptical, decided to go as well. He wanted to spend some time with his dad, and he didn’t want me to endure those long flights alone. He even agreed to my choice of activities – a pleasant surprise given that I usually have more than enough energy for both of us. Then again, he was a hell of a trooper about our four-hour walk around Purple Mountain in Nanjing.
Cruise on Royal Caribbean Radiance of the Seas – June 24 – July 1, 2016
Juneau, Skagway, Icy Strait Point, Ketchikan
Vancouver and Seattle – July 1 – 5, 2016