Vic and I are planning our cruise to Alaska with Celebrity on the Summit. Vic has a very debilitating disease and when we cruised in October we got a regular room as all the handicapped accessible rooms were taken. We had a wonderful time, but it was very difficult trying to turn and manipulate the wheelchair in a regular room.
This cruise, Vic requires a power wheelchair and I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for us or advice for us as to what shore excursions would be good for us and which ones we should stay away from.
Don't know which ports you are going to, but we left from Vancouver where we were able to easily get a wheelchair van cab from the airport to the pier. Our first port was Juneau, where we took a tour (through Princess) of the city including the Alaska State Museum (very nice), the Mendenhall Glacier National Park (very accessible), a salmon fishery (not much to see as we were too early in the season), and a botanical garden (not accessible, but a nice place to sit and an accessible toilet while others hiked the short trail). This was in an accessible van that could hold about 10 passengers.
In Skagway, there are shuttle buses into town. About every 4-5 buses is accessible with a lift. You can ask the person at the pier to call ahead and request one, but it still may take a while. We took the Whitehorse Railway trip to the top of the pass here (half-day trip). One car is accessible with a lift and accessible bathroom. We booked through Princess.
In Sitka we also got an accessible city tour through Princess (with a bit of a struggle) that included the Native American Craft museum, a drive around town, the Archangel dancers and the Russian Orthodox cathedral. This was our only tender port, so of course we brought the manual wheelchair for this as they rarely can accomodate a power chair on tenders.
Thank you for your e-mail. We are leaving from Vancouver and will be travelling through Skagway, Icy Straight Point, Juneau, and Ketchikan.
We have made arrangements with the Cruise Line for the White Pass Railway and will look into the tour going to the museum and the Mendelhall Glacier as you suggested. Your help is very much appreciated. Thanks.
I don't know if you have gone yet, but in Ketchikan, we took the horse drawn trolley. This will only work if your husband could do a couple of steps up into the trolley. The trolley meets the ship right on the dock. A staff member from the ship took us, in ship's wheelchairs, to the trolley, and then came and got us when we returned from the tour. Shopping is close by, and if the tide isn't too weird, you might be able to get your power chair off the ships gangway, and wheel into town.
My husband was able to speak to someone at their Special Needs desk regarding shore excursions he can do w/his wheelchair on RCCL. I suggest you find the equivalent for Celebrity and speak to them in advance regarding your husband's situation. In some instances, you can order a wheelchair accessible van in advance...
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Hi, thanks for your note. We haven't left yet, and are counting the days. We leave on the 11th to Vancouver and then set sail on the 12th on the Summit. My husband cannot walk up the few steps, but I'm sure the horse trolley would've been fun. We've booked a few tours that we found are wheelchair accessible, and one of them is the Capt. Larry's whale watching in Juneau.