I'm planning on an Alaskan Cruise in 2008. Can I get some input on opinions of when is the best time to go for the weather and preference in cruise lines. Just looking to cruise this time, not enough vacation for cruise and land tour. Any help is greatly appreciated.
We were real pleased with the weather in mid-July, when we did the Inside Passage in 2005. Not too hot, and not too wet. Less expensive cruises are available in September, but by then, the weather can be iffy. Early in the season (May), can be a little iffy, too. It's kind of a crap shoot. No matter the weather, it is a fantastic experience. We hiked in misty, almost rainy weather in Juneau, went to a rainforest (hello?) in Ketchikan where it rains 300 days a year, and had great weather in Skagway.
Also, just for a little perspective, check out the weather trends for Juneau, Ketchikan, and Skagway between May and September. Don't go expecting grand weather....Alaska is what it is, appreciate it for what it is and what it has to offer!
The outside passage? Actually, it's one of the smoothest rides in cruising. Check out a map of western Canada, (starting point, Vancouver, BC) and southeastern Alaska. You'll see it designated as the inside passage (use Juneau, Skagway, and Ketchikan as landmarks or reference points). You're not cruising in open ocean, so the seas are, and hence, the cruise, is, as mild a cruise as you'll ever take. I can't recommend it enough. Beeeeeeautiful, and as calm a trip as you can have.
We are planning, within the next couple of years, to do the one-way, either northbound or southbound, Alaska cruise.
That does sound rather nice, as I'm sure the views, among other things, are breathtaking.
Is the weather, as one might tend to believe, generally colder, regardless of season? Or is the inside passage cruise also one where you can lounge by the pool in summer?
It can get rather cool at times even on a sunny day, and don't forget when the ship is moving you will get a little wind from her movement.
I wore shorts at time on our early June cruise last year, but lots were in sweaters and Jeans.
Our cruise, although for the most part was not too wet, was pretty cool.. rfujitani; being from northern California, you may or may not remember the old saying--the coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco. It can be quite chilly on an Alaskan cruise. Look at the average temperature and the average rainfall for the ports of call, at the time you plan on going to Alaska. Sometimes it's cool, or downright cold, and other times, it can be balmy. It is truly a crapshoot. A couple of weeks after our cruise in 7/05, some friends of ours had a balmy cruise.