Disney Wonder: A Couple of Hours in Ketchikan, Alaska
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Ketchikan was the last port of call until the long sail back to Vancouver. We were also in port from 11:15 am until 7:45 pm, so it was a different vibe and feel for excursion day.
I had decided to purchase tickets online through a third party to visit Misty Fjords National Monument, so it was the first time that we were actually on our own.
Morning on the Ship
Since we could not disembark from the Ship until 11:15 am, Ally and I decided to hit up the gym! The gym had significantly fewer guests compared to the first Sea Day and Endicott Arm Day. Ally and I just did some simple treadmill and weight exercises before heading off to breakfast. We also signed up for the coveted spring class for the next morning!
Breakfast was quite crowded at the Cabanas because everyone seemed to have the same idea as us – go to the cabanas as late as possible, so you do not get hungry while out and about in Ketchikan.
Finally, when the ship docked, we were able to get off to get on a plane trip.
The whole day was rainy and misty – which is not a great combination to try to get in the air and fly to a national monument. The first thing we did once we got off the ship, was to dodge the rain and run right into the Southeast Alaska Discovery Center. We had some time to kill before our flight and watched one of the educational movies and explored the visitor center.
After spending about an hour in the store, the rain had slacked off, and we explored downtown and explored the shops. Many of the shops and restaurants are very centered around tourists. When we were in one of the convince stores, Ally found this faux fur hat, however, we went over to the Sitka Fur Gallery, and she bought a cute hat for the cold winters in New York.
Misty Fjord National Monument
Every time we go on a trip, we always try to do some air adventure, and it never works out. For Ketchikan, I decided to not book through Disney, but try booking an excursion through a third party. I decided to book my tour online through Alaska Shore Excursions. The trip was going to be 2.5 hours of scenic cruising to Misty Fjords and a 25-minute flight from Misty Fjords to Ketchikan. According to my email exchange with the company, as long as the handi-capable person could transfer from the chair to the boat and plane, they can store the transport chair during the rest of the trip.
Our tickets instructed that we wait for our tour guide at the “Liquid Sunshine” Rain gauge on the side of the Ketchikan Visitor Center. Of course, the rain and wind were not on our side, and our 1:15 pm trip was canceled. Taquan Air was the actual company that was going to bring us around, so the tour guide instructed that we go and try to re-book with Taquan Air directly for a later flight because the weather may improve.
The 3 pm flight was full, so our only option was the 5 pm flight. With nothing planned and three hungry travelers – we decided to go check out Burger Queen.
Ketchikan is pretty handicap able when it comes to hills and what not, there were a few areas that were a bit intense. First, we didn’t realize there was a footbridge in the tunnel, so there was some excitement in trying to cross the street while using the transport chair. Also, there is at least one big hill, but we were able to skip a few streets and deal with the incline.
After eating at Burger Queen, we continued to explore the city.
Back up plan
Even though Mom and I read probably every trip report and blog in the world preparing for this trip, I did not have a backup plan for Ketchikan. In true Lindsly Fashion, we just winged it. Since we walked all the way over to Burger Queen, we decided to look at some of the antique shops and unique stores in the area. It started raining again, so we quickly ran back towards town, debating if we wanted just to continue to brave it in the rain.
After a quick Google search, I learned that there was a grocery store Starbucks not too far away and we could take the free public bus all the way to the Safeway so I could purchase my favorite souvenir – a You Were Here Starbucks mug.
Of course, we got on the bus going the wrong way, but we were able to get a little sightseeing of the rest of the area that we were not able to cover by foot. The almost round trip did not take that long, and we had 20 minutes to go into Safeway, look for more spruce tip beer (we didn’t find any), purchase my Starbucks Mug, and purchase a few coffees for the family.
What would I do differently?
I wish I had made a backup plan for Ketchikan instead of just winging it. I usually plan every little detail when it comes to these trips, but for some reason, I didn’t prepare a backup plan. My back up plan would probably have included mapping out what restaurants I would want to dine at (even though I loved Burger Queen), how to utilize the bus program, and some other sightseeing areas we would want to knock out. Of course – it was pretty relaxing just being able to walk around town and do whatever we wanted.
That evening there was a comedy show that we opted to skip so we could explore the ship, sit on our balcony, and enjoy the scenery. At first, we wanted to find the secret deck that we’ve read about on all of the blogs. We searched high and low (and even got on the internet to see if we could figure it out). Well, let me just tell you, there is no longer a secret deck on Deck 9 anymore, in fact, the area that used to be the secret deck now looks like this.
Also, while exploring, we were able to watch the taping of the Morning Show! Walking around we saw that the cruise directors were filming int he D club and as soon as I saw them I yelled ‘Look the Morning Show!’ They did not get out of character at all!
When I was walking back to my room, we actually ran into Donald Duck and we were wearing the same Plaid Shirt! Who knew that Donald looked so good in red and black?
That night, the seas turned for the worse, and we got our first bout of what it felt like to be seasick.
Have you ever been to Ketchikan?
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