My SIL and I have both taken the one-way cruise before and this summer we are interested in simplifying things by taking a RT. I was initially taken by HAL's Amsterdam out of Seattle because it spends a lot of time in each port and cruises Glacier Bay, which I missed the first time. My favorite ports are Juneau and Sitka. It also stops in Victoria, but late in the evening, so to me it doesn't really count. It would be cheaper to cruise out of Seattle (which HAL does), but I'm open to suggestions. We aren't interested in dressing up; are interested in balcony. NCL looked appealing for informality, but fear lack of quiet. (I know--you can't have everything!)
I got such wonderful advice from Jim for my last trip in 2002. I'm hoping to get some good advice here again. Thanks.
Unless you wish to eat in the buffet, there will be "dressing up" on HAL. The pluses of this line are as listed, Glacier Bay, and long port times. But it does significantly more outside passage sailing than round trip Vancouver. For your interests- this perhaps is the best option??? I wouldn't dismiss NCL- they also have Glacier Bay on some sailings and the more "relaxed" dining option- which is superior in Alaska. But compare their port times- again if that is your priority for this visit? I am perplexed by your "lack of quiet" comment. No party ships yet in Alaska and you are likely to find similar age groups on both lines.
Thanks, Karen16. I don't know what I meant by lack of quiet either. I do really like the relaxed dining option on NCL, but haven't been able to find itinerary I like or Glacier Bay cruising. Is that important? Quite frankly, one reason I want to go to Alaska is to get away from the LV heat!
Thanks, Karen, for making me think out of the box. My SIL prefers casual (me, too), and is concerned about the AT SEA day on HAL. She is not much of a sightseer (whereas I am obsessed). I have a very strong feeling she would prefer the leisure inside passage sailing on NCL and, hey, I'm just glad to get away from Las Vegas in July! (The NCL Star cruises Glacier Bay).
Most all the Seattle sailings sail open ocean (outside Passage) where as Vancouver round trips sail more inside passage, some significantly more. Use the route maps as a guide and make your choice based on what fits your priorities best.