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Old February 9th, 2011, 12:21 PM
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Default Is a balcony cabin a Must ?

Is is absolutely necessary to have a balcony on an Alaskan cruise?
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Old February 9th, 2011, 12:29 PM
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We booked an Oceanview on our Alaska cruise .We were upgraded to a balcony .The only time we set forth on the balcony was to wave to relatives on another ship docked across the way from us in a port .
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Old February 9th, 2011, 12:54 PM
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We feel a balcony is a must for an Alaskan cruise. Too much awsome scenery and nature passing by and don't want to miss any of that. We also make sure that the balcony is covered for when rain shows up. Now, that said, we do not enjoy the casinos, bingo, art auctions, etc. We prefer kicking back and vegging out. So if you're wanting to be on the go all the time then maybe a balcony not so needed. But if you're like us and want to kick back with a book and want to relax relax relax....Yes, for that balcony. Worth the extra $.
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Old February 9th, 2011, 01:21 PM
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I love balcony cabins anywhere. But Alaska and Panama Canal trips probably top my list for really feeling I get full value for the balcony.
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Old February 9th, 2011, 01:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lori L View Post
Is is absolutely necessary to have a balcony on an Alaskan cruise?
Absolutely necessary? No.

Really nice to have? Yes.

You can cruise Alaska in an inside or ocean view and still have a wonderful time seeing the sights from the upper decks but there is so much beauty for so much of the cruise a balcony is wonderful. I spent many hours, day and night, sitting on the balcony and just looking at the mountains, fjords and other scenery, on both of my Alaska cruises.

One thing to remember if you have a balcony. If there is a whale sighting, it will be on the other side of the ship.

Take care and enjoy Alaska. It is a beautiful cruise.
Mike
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Old February 9th, 2011, 08:04 PM
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We've been lucky and the whales seemed to show up on our side of the ship...not to mention the dall porpoise....Also near Alert bay with the guy in the small boat playing the trumpet to the passing ships.
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Old February 9th, 2011, 08:46 PM
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I have never cruised in Alaska, but, I would not want to miss the scenery as we cruise by..My head would be on swivle....be good to yourself
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Old February 10th, 2011, 03:53 AM
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I'm with everyone else, if there ever is a time to opt for a balcony, Alaska would be it. Just amazing scenery that you just don't want to miss.
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Old February 10th, 2011, 12:00 PM
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Question Balcony in Alaska

We have cruised to Alaska eight times. We have been in inside cabins, obstructed view cabins, standard outsides, once with a balcony and one wonderful cruise in adjoining suites!

Check out our trip report and pictures of a great balcony at Cruising to Alaska on HAL Zuiderdam

Honestly, while the balconies are fairly nice, they are by no means a MUST. The one balcony we had was a free upgrade, and if you check the page above you will see the special circumstances that got us the suites.

Our experience in Alaska is that the balconies are, to say the least, chilly and breezy while the ship is moving. To spend any time out there you have to be well bundled up! You do pretty much have scenery to look at. This consists of tree covered hillsides with mountains in the background. It is very pretty for about 10 minutes and then begins to bore me. There is also a small chance of sighting marine life from the balcony, perhaps a two minute sighting for hours spent looking.

We do like to be out and about the ship. We participate in a few activities (never miss our Trivia game) but we find that to veg out and relax there are many good places around the ship, many with large picture windows for scenery viewing and a handy steward to bring you hot chocolate!

OTOH check out our trip report and pictures of enjoying the ship from the public rooms at http://www.bully4.us/volendam.html

Another big consideration in Alaska is the price of shore excursions versus the cost of a balcony. Because there are so many people who do believe a balcony is a MUST in Alaska they are VERY pricey. For the additional cost of a balcony, two people could take at least one big exciting excursion like a helicopter landing, or splurge on nice excursions in several ports. That is our choice in Alaska and it works for us. YMMV.

Have a GREAT cruise!
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Last edited by MercedMike; February 10th, 2011 at 12:09 PM.
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Old February 10th, 2011, 05:05 PM
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I all boils down to ones likes and dislikes. There's no wrong answer. Whatever makes each cruiser happiest, right? I'd rather spend the money on a balcony for a week then on a one or 2 hour helicopter flight. Or, on the other hand, save a little longer and do both!
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Old April 8th, 2011, 02:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterC View Post
I all boils down to ones likes and dislikes. There's no wrong answer. Whatever makes each cruiser happiest, right? I'd rather spend the money on a balcony for a week then on a one or 2 hour helicopter flight. Or, on the other hand, save a little longer and do both!
Sounds like the best option
My Brother-in-law took a helicopter ride over the glaciers and was the best thing he ever did with his wife.
They also had a balcony
In both cases they decied to go for broke as they had already come a very long way
We live on Vancouver Island so are spoiled by everything you see except for the glacier . We would not have an issue taking an Outside cabin next time to Alaska as we did it prior on a balcony and found the weather not
always warm enough to relax outside for a while or it rained at times
But we are folks who like warmth.. so , that is our reason
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Old July 1st, 2011, 09:10 PM
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I have been on one Alaskan cruise and we had an inside cabin. We liked being on the inside because we were there in June and it was light outside for a good part of the night. We don't spend a lot of time in our cabins when we cruise, so a balcony (or window, for that matter) was not a necessity for us. We spent a lot of time on upper decks and saw plenty, including whales and seals. It really depends on what you prefer.
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