Crown Princess to Alaska!
After spending three beautiful days in the Seattle area, it was time to board our cruise ship for Alaska.
My mom and her boyfriend were joining us for the cruise. For each of us, it was our first time on a cruise and first time to Alaska!
We ended up choosing Princess Cruises because of their extensive options and excursions for Alaskan cruising. An itinerary that included Glacier Bay National Park was a must. We opted for a roundtrip from Seattle, as opposed to Vancouver, for cheaper airfares and less hassle. Had we been able to spend more time, we would have likely taken a pre- or post-cruise land tour in Alaska. That’s ok…gives us an excuse to go back!
We caught the shuttle from the hotel to the Smith Cove Cruise Terminal at Pier 91 in Seattle. Luckily, the chaos was under control. Although our ship, and another ship – Holland America’s Westerdam – were both boarding, everything was orderly. We dropped off our bags, filled out the health form, went through security and did a Customs pre-clearance, and then checked in at the Princess counters. No standing. Not even time to sit! The line kept moving…that’s what I like. In total, it took around 30 minutes from the time we were dropped off at the cruise ship terminal until we were on board.
Our staterooms were ready when we boarded. And that’s when it hit us. As first-time cruisers, we had seen photos of the Crown Princess and saw YouTube videos, but nothing prepared us for the sheer size of the ship. Amazing…and it would be our “home” for the next week!
We booked staterooms towards the aft of the ship: Riviera deck R722 and R724. I had been dubious of their location – right underneath one of the buffets, but we need not worry. Heard some minor noise in the morning, but nothing to fuss about. Hey, we considered it our wake-up call! The beds were comfortable and the shower, although small, was nice and surprisingly powerful.
The location ended up being the best thing about the staterooms: Just a few steps down and we were at the aft of the ship at the Horizon Terrace pool and Outrigger bar. Rarely was it crowded–easy to find a deckchair or a table. It felt “semi-private” to us…we liked it!
After getting settled in, we stopped at the buffet for a quick lunch, then started to explore the ship, and then muster drill. At sail way, we made it back to the aft of the ship and hung out at the Horizon Terrace pool. We were treated to some great shots of Seattle, including Mount Rainier.
Each day, the Princess Patter – cruise ship newsletter – is delivered to your room. Here’s the Patter from the first day, so you can get an idea of what’s happening on board.
The next day is a sea day. Below are some more photos from embarkation day. For the full set, check out my Flickr album.