Happy Monday, everyone…the last day of one of my favorite months, July. So, join me to re-visit my Alaskan Cruise 2023: Top 5 Moments.
Selecting just five top moments from our Alaskan cruise is incredibly difficult for me….each step of this journey was memorable and amazing.
I forced myself to select top five moments that sometimes made me tear up and sometimes took my breath away.
Of course, I will share throughout these posts the scenery…the weather…the best places we ate (and ate, and ate)…but for now…
Join me to preview my Alaskan Cruise 2023: Top 5 Moments….
ALASKAN CRUISE 2023: TOP FIVE MOMENTS: SPECIAL PEOPLE
For one week, we joined with Royal Caribbean’s Ovation of the Seas staff for our Alaskan Cruise.
And it was spending time with these special people that made the entire week a top special moment.
Men and women from all over the world who are well trained…and happy…and fun…and there to be of service constantly.
I have never met a more impressive team of individuals. And, of course, I love any staff that sings and dances at breakfast.
I also have a new friend from Zimbabwe, Africa. I beautiful woman who is employed in the spa.
We really hit it off with so much in common, and spent at least four hours together over the course of the cruise….we also plan to email one another.
On the last night, as we ate our final meal on board, the staff entertained us by all singing and dancing to, “Leaving on a Jet Plane.”
As if it were planned, near the end of that song, a whale came up to share a spout and tail flip in a window near us. Everyone gasped and squealed.
Thanks to this amazing crew for making our Alaskan cruise a moment to always remember.
ALASKAN CRUISE 2023: TOP FIVE MOMENTS: A RARE WHALE EVENT
According to our guides, the whale event we were blessed to see on our Alaskan cruise is a rare one and we watched it over and over again, eleven times, for two hours as they popped up nearby all around us.
The event is called Bubble Net Feeding with humpback whales.
According to the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, bubble net feeding is: “Bubble-net feeding is a cooperative hunting strategy that occurs within a group of whales. It is a complex, highly synchronized set of behaviors that involve communication and cooperation, demonstrating signs of high social intelligence.”
Sorry about the picture quality…it is so hard to get these pictures when you do not know where they are going to pop up.
But, here you can see the very large mouth of these whales opening to swallow the fish.
“To bubble-net feed, whales dive deep below schools of fish and use bubbles blown from their blowholes to stun and trap fish closer to the surface. One whale generally leads the effort followed by the rest of the group. The leader will usually be responsible for blowing the bubbles and the other members will surround the fish, following them to the surface by swimming in spiral patterns to keep the fish trapped.
Humpback whales are known as “gulpers”, which means they feed by leaving their mouths open, swallowing everything in their paths before closing their mouths, pushing water out through their baleen plates and swallowing the critters (usually fish and small crustaceans) they caught. During bubble net feeding, the whales swimming toward the surface will have their mouths open and gulp fish from the school they have corralled.” – National Marine Sanctuary Foundation.
The guides were like little children seeing something for the first time…giddy with excitement. Apparently, they have waited years to see this event in the Shelter Island State Marine Park region.
When we went whale watching in Cabo, it was nothing like this…though enjoyable.
This was for sure a special moment.
ALASKAN CRUISE 2023: TOP FIVE MOMENTS: ONE OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL PLACES ON EARTH
Connie was right….the rose from yesterday is in the Butchart Gardens in Brentwood Bay, British Columbia.
This is one of the top eight gardens in the world and it literally took my breath away with the beauty. I wish we could have been there longer.
I also was captivated by this young lady. She was dressed very feminine down to the lace gloves and a floral parasol. She was a visiting tourist as we were.
These gardens as so incredible that I am going to devote an entire post to them later in the week.
Actually, I was amazed at the gorgeous flowers throughout the Alaskan cruise and I took floral pictures everywhere.
But, I have never been to a garden that blessed me as much as this one. If I lived nearby, I would be there often.
Yesterday’s red rose is the All My Loving rose…from the Beatles’ song. Love the flower and the inspiration.
Watch for more from Butchart Gardens soon. It is worth planning a trip to see next year for their 100th Anniversary...they say there will be many special plans.
ALASKAN CRUISE 2023: TOP FIVE MOMENTS: A COZY SPOT
Stagway, Alaska reminded me so much of my favorite small town in Texas….Fredericksburg.
It is quaint and cozy.
The retailers are predominantly small business owners and artists…I loved shopping there and sitting in an eclectic coffee shop.
I also loved talking with the owners of the shops and hearing their stories and stories behind a couple of items I purchased.
This building is completely made of driftwood…so it fascinated me.
As first time cruisers, we do have a few regrets about our schedule that we would have chosen differently.
We did not ride the train out of Skagway and heard from many that is was worth it. Just know, if you plan an Alaskan cruise like ours…you may want to include the train ride.
ALASKAN CRUISE 2023: TOP FIVE MOMENTS: THE REASON WE WENT
I am going to share more next Sunday about the spiritual blessings from this Alaskan cruise.
But for today, I could not leave Stephen ‘s music and the overall joy of each event out of the special moments.
His music has been a part of our family for over 30 years. Mr. B and I both cried through many of the performances.
For those who want to know more, please join me next Sunday.
Now, of course, this week, I will share what I wore and the challenges and decisions behind the outfits…I learned many things I did not know in the beginning about dressing for this cruise.
I will also share the successful travel products that have seen me through two big trips this year.
I so hope you will enjoy these different posts for many reasons…to help you with your own travels and to inspire you for this amazing life now over 70!
Of course, join in with comments or questions…..and alway….
By Pamela Lutrell
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