7 Day Alaska Cruise with Carnival – Part I

picture of water

This past week we returned from a trip that I’ve been thinking about for years, that finally became a reality – an Alaskan cruise. And we we’re so excited that we finally got to go this summer. We had thought maybe we should just wait until the kids were older, but really you can always find an excuse, why not go now!?!

We have a toddler, which can make things a bit difficult. So we decided to fly in a day early just so we’d have plenty of time to rest and relax before we boarded the ship. I even booked the flight very early in the morning, so by the time my daughter woke up, we’d be in Seattle.

Things never go as planned though and after waking my kids at 3 in the morning, they we’re completely wired through the security line and literally screamed in glee and ran amuck for the 3 and half hours we had to wait for the plan.

Thankfully just as we boarded the plane, our toddler fell fast asleep. We got to Seattle early and we were able to check in to our hotel early before going and exploring the city for a few hours.

The next morning we woke up early and headed down to the pier to board the ship. Because we boarded early, we got to walk around and enjoy the ship while it was quiet and peaceful. We got a bit to eat and then headed to the upper deck to enjoy the views of Mt. Rainier.

picture of pier

There are so many sailboats in Seattle!

picture of sailboats

We also played little miniature golf.

picture of mini golf

The first day was spend exploring all the ship has to offer, along with the incredible decor. The Carnival Legend’s theme is about Legends. There is lots of artwork from ancient times. It’s beautiful everywhere you look

picture of decor

Our first day was a sea day and it was gloomy and overcast. We enjoyed the views as we relaxed on the decks napping the day away.

picture of mountains

We saw so much wildlife on this cruise. So many whale, porpoise, orca, and sea lions were out and about. It was hard for me to distinguish what was what at first, but with the help of the on board naturalist, I was able to somewhat identify them. It was super exciting to see all these huge animals so close and in their natural habitat.

My best advice is don’t forget your binoculars! Everyone in the family needs a set too. We went with one older pair, and ended up buying 2 more pairs. The prices on the ship aren’t overpriced either (only $5 more than Amazon for the Bushnell Falcon 10×50), just in case you forget yours.

picture of bird on water

Our kids enjoyed the sites for a little while before we sent them off to Camp Ocean. Both of my kids loved the activities they had planned. My daughter loved playing pretend with the other toddlers and my son, now that he is nine, loved the fact that he was able to sign himself in and out of camp by himself.

picture of camp ocean

The second day of the cruise was spent cruising Tracy Arm Fjord. It’s the most amazing experience. The naturalist was speaking all day over the intercom system pointing out wildlife and giving us lots of tidbits of information about what we were seeing.

As we entered the fjord, we began to see floating icebergs in all different shapes. We all though this one really looked like a swan!

It was awe inspiring. There’s just so little you can say about it because it just takes your breath away. One of the things that amazed me the most is that the water is so full of life, it’s green. All that phytoplankton makes it also full of all those creatures that eat plankton, and all the creatures that eat them and so on and so on.

picture of cliff

We even saw a National Geographic boat, so we figured we must have been in a pretty special place!

picture of nat geo boat

Everywhere you look is just pristine beauty.

picture of cliff and iceberg water

It’s a perfect cruise through the fjord. As you see the most beautiful sights.

picture of fjord valley

And then at the end of the Fjord is Sawyer Glacier, an active tidewater glacier. This was as close as we were able to get to it in the ship. It’s beautiful.

picture of massive glacier

If you want to see the glacier up close, make sure you head to the excursion desk first thing and book an excursion in a smaller boat that will take you up close to the glacier. The minimum age for this excursion is 5, so we decided to skip it this time.

picture of glacier and icebergs

As we left out of the fjord, we headed to our stateroom and I sat on our balcony all afternoon and snapped beautiful pictures as the kids napped.

picture of all icebergs floating in water

I took so many photos during this cruise. This is just a few of them.

picture of grassy valley

Be sure to stay tuned for my second part of our Alaska cruise!

Disclaimer: Carnival provided complementary cruise tickets, but all extra fees, gratuities and excursions were paid for by me. All thoughts and opinions 100% my own. 

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