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Cruise Diary: In Honor of HAL’s 140 Years of Exploring the Seven Seas

Adventure traveler and Dutch TV personality Charlotte Van Hoorn was on board Zaandam for an Alaska cruise and will be sharing her adventure with us.

All aboard a smaller, but double-engined excursion vessel in Tracy Arm with a unique two-tiered viewing platform behind the wheelhouse above the spacious cabin. Luckily, no need to jockey for position for great views because by now on this voyage I am REALLY SPOILED. We made stops within the fjord to view wildlife, bears and mountain goats, seals, sea lions and whales. There were wonderful hues of greens in the forest and fern-filled glens we past as we headed up the Arm towards the colder, barren rock clime of the living tidewater glacier.


As we followed a course toward our targeted inlet, porpoises jumped and played alongside. Cascades of melt water spritzed us as we followed the walls of the gorge toward our goal. Neat to spy a sailboat motoring in on its own, but otherwise, we had this world’s wonder to ourselves. Too tight for cruise ships of any size to maneuver.

The crew worked very hard to give naturalist pointers, while offering a large variety of food and beverages for purchase and some fresh salmon tidbits through the day. It was a longer tour because it covered so much beauty. Our maps provided detailed descriptions which reminded me of traveling through the geologic markers of the Grand Canyon by raft.

Because there was so much unique and distinctive to observe, I have no idea how long our journey was. I was looking for eons of geologic time markers, not my watch. A very comfortable outing that I can recommend for all ages. When all others retired below, I had the chance to take some panoramic pix that I hope you enjoy as much as I did taking them with the wind in my face, as the pilot reved up the engines to speed back to port and our home at sea, Zaandam.







1 Comment
  • Peter Ward

    Great photography! Thanks for sharing.

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