Sights of Alaska stirring to the soul We'd slowed when a humpback whale surfaced, passed an island covered with gulls and kittiwakes, pandora digital spotted comical puffins, sleek harbour seals, a sea otter and her pup and great, grunting sea lions. We'd been awed by towering rock formations and approached to within a half kilometre of a blue green glacier that glows as though it's lit from inside. It wasn't surprising to learn Princess Cruises passengers consistently rate this the best tour in Alaska. Seward, our starting point, is at the end of Resurrection Bay, a fjord itself. Our vessel was a catamaran, a stable design that handles the choppy waters well. On a wet, chilly day, with clouds hugging the granite hilltops, it was tempting to sit inside where it was warm and dry. But the scenery and wildlife were too compelling, so up came the hoods on the rain jackets and out came the cameras. For many, this glacier is the high point. While cruise ships visit Glacier Bay, they can't get as close to ice fields as a small catamaran. Aiaik is part of the 1100 square kilometre Harding Icefield. Indigenous people lived in Aiaik best price pandora bracelet Bay 2,000 years ago, using poison tipped lances to hunt whales from sealskin kayaks. Closer to our goal, the bay was cluttered with chunks of ice that banged and clanked off our twin hulls. I was amazed to see eight to 10 modern kayaks glide pandora charms japan by. Surely they hadn't paddled all the way from Seward to this desolate spot? There was a simpler explanation: A water taxi had brought them, left them to camp in tents ashore, and picked them up later. The fjords tour is one of the optional excursions available to cruise passengers staying at rustic Kenai Princess Wilderness Lodge. Some of our group went rafting and reported seeing lots of eagles, a black bear and a brown one with two cubs. A couple from London, England, went fly fishing with a guide for trout and salmon, and were thrilled to land 10 apiece. Still weary from a day of flying Toronto to Anchorage, via Vancouver, means 81/2 hours in the air and a four hour time difference I settled for a stroll down a trail bordered by fireweed to the swift flowing Kenai River. We'd been told there were bears about so I sang, figuring an off key rendition of I've Got A Lovely Bunch of Coconuts would send them scampering. The Kenai lodge is small, 86 units compared with the 600 room Denali lodge. Guests stay in spacious log cabins, each with a wood burning stove and a porch with rocking chairs. The main lodge overlooks the river valley. A big deck runs almost its entire length. When the weather's fine, guests can lunch there and work on their tan. When it isn't, there's a big fireplace in the dining room. The food was good.
Alaska seafood was front and centre, including scallops, crab legs, salmon, halibut and black cod, which fancier restaurants might list as sablefish. This lodge proved to be our group's favourite. Others must have felt that sway, because this year Princess is offering a pandora silver charms new cruise Tour PA8 in the catalogue featuring three nights there.
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