Like many other travelers, you must have longed to take a cruise to Alaska. An Alaskan ocean voyage offers people an enviable itinerary, adventurous opportunities, and a constant supply of magnificent Alaskan views.
You get to witness all of this and much more via the comforts of your ocean-resort - Disney cruises. Your ocean cruise line will be abundantly stocked with restaurants, theater markets and boutiques, hotel-like staterooms, and so much more.
Once you embark on a vacation of a lifetime, get ready to experience some exhilarating fun, unforgettable natural encounters, all encompassed with the magic of Disney fun and laughter.
Here is the first-timer's guide to Alaskan Disney cruises.
There are some factors to consider when choosing to opt for Alaskan Disney cruises for your journey.
If you and your loved ones are a fan of Disney, Alaskan Disney cruises will very much feed their enthusiasm. However, it should be noted that everything on your Disney cruise will be Disney-themed. This includes ketchup on your child's plate, shaped like Mickey's head to the characters and their stories all over the ship deck.
The level of services on a Disney cruise ship is out and out very Disney-like. Every crew member working on the ship is there to ensure that guests genuinely experience the Disney magic. The crew hiring procedure focuses on selecting extremely happy and cheerful people who can take care of children.
In addition, the crew is also known for the exemplary customer and hospitality services that the company is known for. Disney is also renowned for the elements that people can expect on Alaskan Disney cruises. This includes shore excursions with some beloved Disney touches like Goofy showing up in Ketchikan at the lumberjack show or Donald Duck looking for gold in Skagway alongside you. The hand-picked Disney tour operators also work directly with these beloved Disney characters to offer passengers an experience of a lifetime.
When you are on board, you will see Disney characters wearing Alaskan gear, which gives you some of the most outstanding pictures to post on Instagram. You will also find expert naturalists educating you about glaciers and the natural wilderness of Alaska.
The ship is also loaded with some of the best menus on any cruise line - from buttered king crab legs to a roasted salmon steak. All of this is taken a step further with Alaska-inspired cocktails.
Moreover, exclusive to Disney's Alaska itinerary - there is also a "Frozen" deck that celebrates Elsa and Anna in a joyous Pixar party.
Alaskan Disney Cruises Itinerary
Disney's Alaska cruises depart from Vancouver for various itineraries, ranging from five to seven and nine-night cruises. The stops on these cruises are Skagway, Juneau, Ketchikan, Victoria, Sitka, Icy Strait Point, Endicott Arm, and Hubbard Glacier.
On a usual seven-night, you get a full pre-cruise day in Vancouver, where you can rent a bicycle and ride along the spectacular waterfronts around Stanley Park. Your pre-cruise night can be spent at a hotel where you can be showered with some more hospitality before you get showered with the authentic Disney's hospitality.
Once you have boarded the cruise ship, your first port of call will be Skagway. Here you will be able to take a stunning helicopter ride to glaciers, hike to land's end, explore the Western-style state street, which is full of salons and shops. You can also enjoy films about the Klondike gold rush at the visitor's centers.
The next stop will be Juneau, where you can enjoy some lovely views while watching some whales or browsing the stores on the shopping strip. Mt. Robert's Tramway awaits you, taking you on the top of the 3,800-foot peak to give you a peek into the gorgeous views over the Gastineau Channel.
Next will be Ketchikan, where you can enjoy a small morning trolley tour to witness the iconic totem poles in the town at Saxman Village. The afternoon will be spent at the raucous Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show. And in the evening, you might witness some light rain showers if you are lucky while exploring art galleries, souvenir shops, and some unique places to eat and drink.
You will find a souvenir shop at every port, so you will not come back empty-handed. You can spend three full days at sea and one in the Endicott Arms fjord. During these days, the Alaskan Disney cruises captain will take the ship as close as possible so you can witness the Dawes Glacier. The 600-foot tall glacier can be easily enjoyed by everyone as the captain will take a 360-degree slow turn. Meanwhile, you can also enjoy the splendor and beauty of the smaller icebergs floating past you. The beauty of these icebergs might make you feel a little poignant at times since you cannot experience something like this again. During these glacier viewing aboard your Disney cruise, Disney characters will be by your side, donning their parkas and galoshes, spreading around photographic moments and hugs.
After your last night on board, you will be shuttled back to Vancouver for early-morning disembarkation. Pack your bags early on, preferably the night before!
Also called "Port Adventures" in Disney's language, there are over 200 different kinds of family-friendly activities that you can enjoy when it docks in Alaska. Make sure you have enough time ahead of you to enjoy these memorable moments. You can find independent vendors on your destination's shores to haggle with for independent activities and excursions. However, it is highly recommended that you do not give up on the time of your life by haggling.
Rely on Disney's plan of family-friendly activities. You will be much better off if you are booking these activities well in advance through Disney itself. The tour operators and excursion contractors are pros at what they do!
Some of Disney's most popular shore excursions are in Ketchikan, which includes taking a peek into the lives of Bering Sea Crab fishers. You will get an exclusive look at how the Alaskan crabs are harvested. You can also enjoy the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show, where you can see various artists performing their impressive timber-sport skills with an enthusiastic audience looking over. And guess what? Goofy makes an appearance in this show. Make sure you carry a red and black plaid if you can to wear it to the show.
While you are in Skagway, you will witness the White Pass Railway and the KlondikeGold Dredge excursions, where you will be taken on a gorgeous train ride panning for gold. The Liarsville Gold Rush Trail Camps will take you on a motorcoach tour of Skagway, where you might find some gold. Other shore excursions in Skagway are scavenger hunts, puppet shows, salmon bake, and Donald Duck cameo.
While in Juneau, the Dog Sled summer camp will take you through the Alaskan wilderness led by sprinting huskies. You can also go and indulge in whale watching and a wildlife quest through Stephen's passage or enjoy eagle sightings aboard the comfortable catamaran, which is stocked with a full bar. Aboard that ship, you will also have an expert naturalist coach who will guide you through everything you see.
One of the most memorable Alaskan Disney cruises events is the Glacier Discover on a helicopter operated by the Temsco Helicopters in Skagway. On this tour, you will fly over the crystal-blue lake waters over the gleamingly white icy lands at the foot of lush mountainsides.
If you are worried about your children coping through all the shore excursions, and if you will get some time alone without your kids, fret not! You can drop your kids off at the unique spaces created for kids aboard the Disney cruise lines and have some time alone with other adults.
Most children will be enthusiastic about spending some more time in these colorful rooms. They get to hear stories, play games and indulge in age-appropriate crafts. And of course, being a Disney ship, children also get to watch Disney movies while parents have their fun.
Whether you choose the concierge suites or the inside cabins, you will always have breathtaking, royal Art-Deco decorations in these beautiful rooms. There are crown moldings, genuine teak accents, Euro-top beds lined with Egyptian cotton sheets; every room has excellent storage space.
All the rooms will get quality services from your stewards. In the room, there are TV sets loaded with the best Disney shows and movies, recently released movies, and subscriptions to popular TV networks like ESPN and ABC. You also get a subscription to cruising channels that tell you daily activities listed out along with the upcoming excursions and activities and a real-time Bridgecam.
Most cabins give you ocean view rooms with either a porthole window or a private verandah. There is also a seating area so you and your loved ones do not feel cramped. There are nine different kinds of staterooms aboard the Alaskan Disney Cruises, varying in terms of the type of rooms and view. So you and your family can choose the one that suits your needs and your budget the most. In addition to this, as a part of your total fare, snacks, ice cream, soft drinks, meet and greets with Disney characters, most meals and entertainment options are included.
Once you are all set to get your packing done for your Alaska vacation on your Disney cruise, you should check out the complete list of what Disney recommends to pack and not to pack.
You will need to bring a few things with you, including your binoculars, rain gear, boots, lots of layers, and waterproof jackets. Also, get some fancy, semi-formal or formal attire to enjoy your time onboard at the most acceptable dining options.
While you are in Ketchikan, it will be fun to wear a red and black plaid at the lumberjack show, so do pack one if you have it. It will also be cool to bring a few Disney-themed door decorations.
You should not forget to pack some autograph books if you are traveling with your little ones, so they can get them signed by their favorite Disney characters. Carry one or two pairs of princess/prince costumes for your kids.
Also, carry at least two pairs of bathing suits so you can wear one to the pool if the other one is still wet.
Fold in an extra duffel bag in your luggage so you can pack the additional merchandise and souvenirs you buy on the ship and in Alaska. You will always come back with more items than you packed.
Disney cruises are equipped with wheelchair-accessible amenities and staterooms geared toward people with disabilities on the ship. Traveling with disabilities has become easier, especially on Disney cruises. Guests can rest easy in their staterooms, with all the comforts and amenities. The suite doorways have a minimum of 32-inches, with ramped bathroom thresholds, bathroom grab bars, open bed frames, and adjustable-heightened showers.
All the accessible staterooms have an emergency call button, which guests can use to communicate with the ship crew in case of an emergency. They can also request a stateroom communication kit which includes phone alerts, door knocks, bed shaker notifications, text typewriter, and a strobe light detector.
The Disney cruise line also has a scheduled American Sign Language interpreter in-house for passengers with hearing difficulties, for various onboard shows and entertainment options on the cruise ship, including the main theaters.
New Alaskan Sailings for 2022
Disney has announced a few sailings for 2022, including its most historic ship - Disney Wonder. Most of these itineraries will take you to the Dawes Glacier, Skagway, Juneau, and Ketchikan. Future passengers can expect to see some incredible views next year!
Disney Dream liners will set sail for the first time on June 7, with sailings stopping at the Castaway Cay and other beachy locales like Grand Cayman, Cozumel, and Nassau from Miami. These journeys will be almost three to five-night cruises.