Jump to content

Alaska land tour: through RC or on your own?


Jill
 Share

Recommended Posts

We are already booked on Radiance Southbound May 2022. Debating if we should do the land tour through RC or on our own. 

Not even sure if we can add the land portion since we’re already booked on the cruise. I’ll get with @Sharlaon that. 

We are booked in a JS so wondering if we’d also get double points for land tour too? 

So if you reply do one through RC, which one of these 2? 

E184AB44-B3B7-49E0-86D4-9D76F6D14321.png

BCAE38D6-9C53-48D8-AF1F-F6CB199CC111.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As stated above you do get double points for all days of the cruise tour.  There was no upgrade in room or travel for the land tour portion.

If you have not been to Alaska before or to the areas of the land tour,  I would recommend the RCL Land Tour.  I felt that we got our money's worth on all portions of the land tour.  

When we go back to Alaska for another cruise, we will plan our own land tour with a trip above the Arctic Circle, more time in Denali and Anchorage and take the train all the way down from Fairbanks to Seward.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have (and will be) arriving 5 days early. We do our own thing in Anchorage. Amongst several things, last time we toured museums, took a float plane to near Fairbanks to fly fish, and took the Alaska Railroad (Goldstar Service - Highly recommend to do it once in your life). Our next trip will involve spending the night in Anchorage, taking the train (or a car service) down to Girdwood, staying there for 4 days at the Hotel Alyeska to fish, hike, and play, and then hop back on it and head to Seward for ebarkation.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We had done the land portion through Royal as this was out first time to Alasks so wanted to make sure things go smoothly. It was an excellent experience, and yes on the double points, we too did a JS on the Radiance. 

We flew in a few days earlier to make sure we weren't jet lagged coming from Australia. There are things to do in Fairbanks; the Drege 8 gold mine experience was an excellent day out, just took a local cab out there. 

When you meet with your Royal guide they can organise local tours; we did a flight into an indigenous village way north of the Arctic Circle; getting back to the hotel around 2am, but sun was still out as it was June, so that in itself is something new.

You are doing it in the right direction, Southbound as we were so tired as you want to pack in as much as you can in a day and at night, you meet so many great people you end up chatting and with no setting sun, you realise after a few drinks; oh it is 1ish, better get to bed for the 6am start. Luggage taken care of, picked up outside your door and is waiting for you upon your return. 

For us, these types of tours allow us to sample many things and gives us a guide for when we wish to return and do it ourselves; where we might spend two or three days in one place before moving on. 

As we were going to be traveling for nearly three months, we had two suitcases each; don't judge, packed too much but also left a lot of room for souviners and gift ; however on these tours you tend to live out of a suitcase, so as a suggestion, have a suitcase with everything for the two of you for the week and do laundry when onboard. All the hotels had laundry, we had some done at Denali lodge as there two days but in reality who wants to do laundry when on an adventure.   

It is an experience of a lifetime which you have to do; no amount of photos and videos can truely convey the magnificence of Alaska and RCL did a great job; expense but we felt it was worth the money. Enjoy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Bob_KY said:

We loved Talkeetna Lodge and their back patio.  Denali in the background was phenomenal.   I haven't checked cruisetours lately, but did they quit going to Alyeska?

There are still pre cruise land tours. That’s my question. Should we do one through the cruise line or on our own. I posted the 2 available for our cruise above. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Only been to Alaska once and I will chime in with the others that I found doing the Royal tour was great.  I am very much a DIY person, but Alaska was such an unknown that it was nice to have someone else take care of everything (hotel, transportation, decision making).  You still get to DIY it at the stops if you want or Royal has excursions you can choose to purchase from.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Its been a few years but we did the equivalent of the current 13 night grand mountain post tour. It was fabulous. After the week long inside passage cruise we were bused to Anchorage then it was a mix of motor coach and luxury dome train to Talkeetena, Denali and Fairbanks. All hotels were excellent. The dome rail cars were fabulous with a dining at one point and a bar. Your luggage was taken care of door to door of your hotels. We held Alaskan sled dog puppies and enjoyed eye candy scenery every day. We saw bears, wolves, elk and moose in Denali.  Well versed tour guides kept us entertained and informed every step of the way. It was worth every penny and I would do it again in in a heartbeat. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Jill, do the Wildlife Express, Talkeetna Lodge is lovely and only a short walk down the hill into town. There is a shuttle bus to and from. Great little town on a river, we were lucky enough to be there on the 4th July and it was a blast. Dome train was an experience, with access outside on the back of the carriage. Denali was beautiful, but please be aware that animal sightings are not a guarantee. We were very lucky and saw a mummy brown bear and her two cubs, moose, elk, mountain goats and even Mt Denali, which I was told was rare. The bus with another group did not see the bears but saw a fox; so it is the nature of animals. 

Go for it, you won't regret it

Link to comment
Share on other sites

20 hours ago, Jill said:

There are still pre cruise land tours. That’s my question. Should we do one through the cruise line or on our own. I posted the 2 available for our cruise above. 

I lived in Alaska for over 2 years (Fort Richardson - Anchorage) and preferred having a Cruisetour package deal that came with a Guide.  For us, it was less stressful in planning and more relaxing during execution (not worried about reservations,  transportation, cancelations, etc...).  We did go early to do local stuff. Another benefit that we did not think about about was meeting great people that would be on the Radiance too.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Jill said:

Thanks everyone! We are going with the Wilderness Express Land Tour! A little sticker shock but YOLO! 
 

5 months later we head to Rome for our 12 night Holy Land/Best of Greece on Odyssey. 
 

I better start playing the lottery! Lol 

Great selection, this is the only land tour where a majority of travel is via train. The last leg from Anchorage is via motor coach. If interested you'll have a chance to enjoy all three meals on the train. Each of the three train segments were during one of the meal times. 

Side story: In Anchorage we broke off from the group first thing in the morning and took the train to Seward. Had to buy tickets on our own and did info the tour leader of our plans prior to arriving in Anchorage. One person in our group did stay behind to do the motor coach leg. If they hadn't stayed behind we would have had to deal with bring luggage to the train terminal in the morning. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, CGTLH said:

Great selection, this is the only land tour where a majority of travel is via train. The last leg from Anchorage is via motor coach. If interested you'll have a chance to enjoy all three meals on the train. Each of the three train segments were during one of the meal times. 

Side story: In Anchorage we broke off from the group first thing in the morning and took the train to Seward. Had to buy tickets on our own and did info the tour leader of our plans prior to arriving in Anchorage. One person in our group did stay behind to do the motor coach leg. If they hadn't stayed behind we would have had to deal with bring luggage to the train terminal in the morning. 

I read @twangster blog report and really loved reading about his train ride from anchorage to Seward. We were planning to do that but if the land tour is mostly train, we may take the bus. However if hubby falls in love with the train, we’ll do it. Our daughter will be with us as this is her college graduation present so the train just may happen. ?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

15 hours ago, Jill said:

We are going with the Wilderness Express Land Tour! A little sticker shock but YOLO! 

Nice! I cant wait to hear all about it.

I think everyone warns you Alaska tours/excursions are expensive, but until you see the checkout total, it never really resonates ?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The train is something you are going to want to plan and book in advance for the Anchorage/Seward run as it may sell out. When we did it they actually had luggage drop off for the cruiseships where they took the bags and got them to the ship which was convenient. There are several trains at varying times and they collected all the cruise luggage throughout the day.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

56 minutes ago, Matt said:

Nice! I cant wait to hear all about it.

I think everyone warns you Alaska tours/excursions are expensive, but until you see the checkout total, it never really resonates ?

Yeah kind of regretting that corner aft JS (not really lol!) Upside is we should get 40 C&A points

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...