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Alaskan Adventures - Glacier Bay National Park

Today we woke up to room service beating down the door. They were 45 minutes early with food. My alarm didn’t have a chance to go off yet!

Tourist at Glacier Bay
Jen with Glacier Bay in the background

Today our voyage takes us to Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve. For four hours we gracefully glided across Glacier Bay while seals and otters sunned on the floating icebergs. While I have plenty of pictures and video (taken by “Jen Cousteau” and “Jen C. of National Geographic” ) we definitely had to use the binoculars that we purchased for this trip. We’ll probably never use them again but it made a huge difference. Wildlife we have seen: a brown bear on the shore, sea otters in the water and playing on icebergs, seals on icebergs in packs. I don’t know what you call a pack of seals but I do know they don’t have ears that protrude out like a sea lion.

Tourist on balcony of Norwegian Encore in Glacier Bay
Freezing on the balcony aboard the Norwegian Encore

Wait. The internet knows all when Googling “what do you call a group of seals”. “There are many collective nouns for seals, including a colony, a rookery, a herd, a harem but perhaps our favourite is a bob of seals.” Other wildlife we could have seen: humpback whales (I didn’t see but Ed saw two), mountain goats, black bears, and orcas.

Currently, I am wearing: a sweater, a thick hoodie, a puffy vest, and a blanket while sitting on the balcony. I mean yeah, the rest of me was clothed but I’m just putting perspective how cold it is. It says 51 degrees. Lies! I think the weather app lies.

Glacier Bay
Glacier Bay - what a shot!

I couldn’t possibly record all the names of the glaciers we saw but the prettiest one, well according to ME, was Johns Hopkins Glacier. The pictures do not do it justice. I also can’t begin to explain the scale. You think you’re close. You see an itty bitty iceberg with seals on it like little specs. Our 10x42 magnification binoculars let us watch the critters. Our balcony room on the 14th floor allows for gorgeous, sweeping views of the area but the sea birds below are so small. Except for that one that flew right in front of my face when standing outside. The sound. Damn near complete silence. We heard a glacial crack. Ed saw a piece fall into the bay. The crowds silent. The others on their balconies around us were just as mesmerized with the truly majestic views.

Seals on an iceberg in Glacier Bay
Itty bitty pic of seals on an iceberg!

We walked up to the top deck (17), up by the go-karts and laser tag areas. For obvious reasons it was a ghost town. The ship put the majority of the morning activities on hold so we could all enjoy the stunning views.

It’s also kind of humorous to think that we, along with many others, spent upwards of many thousands of dollars to look at ice.

The experience was nothing short of amazing.

We had lunch at the buffet which is underwhelming. I mean, it’s positively huge with many options but the food is sub par. We took our afternoon nap like old folks then headed to the spa for a couples massage. That was a good massage with the exception of the oil used. They used a ton and it never really absorbed. I’m pretty sure I have sensory issues because I was all sorts of irritated when we attempted to get dressed. It literally soaked through my clothes in spots. They put it in my hair! Ewww! Then, of course, the high pressure sales pitch for a $45 dry brush, $60 oil for 3oz, and some other stuff that was higher and I don’t even remember the price of it. That was super annoying because I really wanted to run back to the room and take a shower. I couldn’t get all the oil off in the shower. I was stuck with an oily residue.

We had dinner reservations at the seafood restaurant. While waiting for our table we ran into this couple that we’ve run into at every port that we’ve chatted with. Very friendly. Anyway, they didn’t have a reservation so we asked them if they’d like to dine with us. They accepted and we probably frustrated the restaurant but who cares. We had such a great time with Amy and Eric! Dinner ended up being two hours but the company was lovely. I had every intention of going to the club to watch the band play but dang I was tired and new we’d have a super early day again.


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