Trip Log Day 3: 9-Night Alaskan Cruise on Disney Wonder – Ketchikan

Trip log, day three. Ketchikan, our first port of call.
9-Night Alaskan Cruise from Vancouver
July 26, 2017
Personal Navigator – Day 3

Wonder Stateroom Map Day 3 Ketchikan 20170726

It happened again… I woke up and went to the gym this morning. This morning’s view from the elliptical was Ketchikan. Isabelle was also up early and patiently waiting for us in Cabanas.

Wonder Gym View Of Ketchikan

We did not have any excursions planned for Ketchikan. Instead, we somewhat followed the walking touring from the Unofficial Guide to Disney Cruise Line.

The Disney Wonder was tied up at berth 1. We went ashore around 9 o’clock in a sea mist that was just enough to warrant rain coats. We ducked into the first store from the ship, which was Christmas in Alaska — think of it as the 25 Days of Christmas shop at Disney Springs. After that, we continued to browse the Salmon Landing Market.

We moved on to the Tongas Historical Museum, which was $5 for each adult and free for children under the age of 15. If you have a National Parks pass, you should bring it with you to Alaska as this is included with the pass. There is an junior ranger activity for kids that once completed will earn them a choice of a badge or patch. We should’ve purchased one, as I believe that it also included the Mendenhall glacier, which we will visit later in the cruise in Juneau.

Southeast Alaska Discovery Center Wonder Ketchikan Tongass National Forest Interagency Visitor Center Ketchikan National Parks Passport StampsSoutheast Alaska Discovery Center Map Southeast Alaska Discovery Center Bear

By the time we were finished in the museum, the weather improved and raincoats were no longer necessary. We took advantage of the break in the weather to continue walking around the city.

Ketchikan Fire Department Antique Truck

Eagle Todem KetchikanWe stopped in the fire department to see their old firetruck then continued on to Whale Park to see the totem pole.

Married Man's Trail KetchikanSalmon Ladder Observation Platform Sign

Our next point of interest was the salmon ladder along Married Man’s Trail which led us to the Creek Street shops.

Salmon Ladder Ketchikan Ketchikan Salmon Ladder Married Man's Trail

Creek Street AlaskaI’m not usually interested in shopping at any port of call, but these shops had some interesting items and some unique Star Wars artwork including by Andy Everson which should really be featured in the Vista Gallery during the Alaska sailing season, if you ask me. Plus, there were salmon samples!

Creek Street Ketchikan Star Wars ArtIf anyone has visited Dolly’s let me know, didn’t really have the chance.

Dolly's House Ketchikan

We were told to make sure we checked out the Tall Tale Taxidermy over in the Cape Fox Marketplace. There were some very cool animals for sale, but the logistics of getting them back to Florida made this just a sightseeing stop. Well, Isabelle did buy a rabbit pelt because (and I quote) ‘its so soft’. I’m sure our cats will appreciate this purchase when we get home.

Ketchikan Tall Tale Taxidermy Rabbit Pelt

For anyone with a sweet tooth, there is a chocolate shop in the marketplace called Ketchi Candies. With a name like that, it is worth a visit.

KetchiCandies

It was approaching lunchtime and after about the fifth shop selling popcorn, we broke down and purchased a bag of fresh caramel crunch popcorn from Orca Corn to enjoy after lunch.

However, before we could eat, we needed to take pictures of the Ketchikan arch sign and The Rock statue along the pier.

Ketchikan Arch The Rock Statue

We passed a number of places to eat during our walk around town. We decided to head back to the Salmon Landing Market to get lunch at Crab Cracker Seafood Bar.

Crab Cracker Seafood Bar

It was only after we sat down that I noticed the full name of the restaurant… Florida Bill’s Crab Cracker Seafood Bar. Seems appropriate that we come all the way to Alaska from Florida on a cruise ship with a home office in Florida that we eat at a restaurant with Florida in the name. The Alaska Fish House was the recommended restaurant (& was next door), but it was pretty busy.

Crab Cracker Seafood Bar King Crab Crab Cracker Seafood Bar Hallibut Fish & Chips

After lunch we split up a bit. I walked along the pier taking some pictures of the Wonder and Royal Caribbean’s Radiance of the Sea while the ladies returned to a few of the other shops.

Royal Caribben Radiance Of The Seas Ketchikan

Ketchikan Arch The Rock Disney Wonder Disney Wonder Berth 1 Ketchikan

Around 2 o’clock, we called it a day and returned to the ship where hot chocolate and cookies were waiting in the atrium. We took advantage of the time and did a load of laundry. It turned out to be a good day and time to wash our clothes.

Isabelle has not been all that interested in meeting characters the last few years, but she was eager to go see Mickey and Minnie in their Alaska garb.

Alaskan Minnie Mouse Family Photo

There are a number of unique character meet and greets coming up the next few days that are on her to do list.

Animator's Palate Emily Isabelle

After meeting Minnie, it was time to get ready and head to Animator’s Palate for dinner.

Animator's Palate Dinner Menu Wonder July 2017

This evening’s menu was the standard rotational menu with regional inspirations and the show was Drawn to Animatio, where the restaurant starts off in black and white and progresses to full color drawings with a grand finale featuring Sorcerer Mickey.

Tonight, I decided to order items that I’ve not tried before. To start I selected the Jarlsberg Cheese and Carrot Soufflé with watercress salad and apple compote. It turned out to be really enjoyable.

Animator's Palate Jarlsberg Cheese And Carrot Soufflé

For my entree, I picked another regional inspirations, the Pumpkin Stroganoff. This dish could have gone two ways and I was thrilled when I took my first bite and it was delicious. However, the dish could use a bit of a tweak with  more squash carrots and tomatoes with less wild rice.

Animator's Palate Pumpkin Stroganoff

For dessert, Emily and I both committed a blogger crime of ordering identical desserts and I was punished. The Fairbanks Blueberry Crumble Tart tasted fine, but was really watery and it was not a result of any melting vanilla frozen yogurt. Emily’s was different – hers was fine and not watery. She said it was basically blueberry pie filling and enjoyable.

Animator's Palate Fairbanks Blueberry Crumble Tart

We were hoping to meet Donald in his Alaskan outfit, but we were unable to get out of dinner in time. All was not lost as we were able to meet Chip and Dale. Unfortunately, we did not get to Daisy because of the long line.

Chip & Dale Alaskan Family Photo

A note about dining. More often than not, we are seated alone and not with other families. Although our travel agent put in our request for a specific head server, we did not go down to check on embarkation day to see if indeed our request had been granted. Previously, we have requested servers and the request has always been met. This is a disclaimer to you that requests are just that – requests. They may not be granted. We wondered if our head server was not on board, but he came up to our table while we were eating breakfast in Cabanas and we chatted for a bit. We are very lucky to have awesome table mates – they are a couple with a 9 year old daughter, which is awesome for both us and Izzy. They also skip a course like we do. However, while we prefer to be out of the main dining rooms by 7-7:15pm at the latest, they enjoy the longer 7:30pm+ exit time. It would be difficult for us to have speedier service and a quicker out time when the rest of the table prefers more of a leisurely dining experience. Our serving team is very nice, which is always a nice bonus.

 

We went back to the room after meeting Chip & Dale, and the Marvel channel went back on. It happened to be Civil War, and even better – the movie was about where we turned it off earlier. I typed up the trip report, and then due to the combination of time changes, waking up as I normally would on the east coast, and the fresh Alaskan air, I fell fast asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow, which is not a bad thing as tomorrow we are heading to Icy Strait Point.

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12 thoughts on “Trip Log Day 3: 9-Night Alaskan Cruise on Disney Wonder – Ketchikan

  1. Greg

    Thanks for the update. The photos bring back fond memories of our Alaska cruise on the Wonder back in ’14. We sailed the Fantasy last year and are looking forward to experiencing the fresh Wonder this October! Curious why you skip a course at dinner…..which course and why?

    Reply
    1. Emily

      We just don’t need a 4 course meal so we usually only do one starter from the app or soup/salad. Sometimes we find that’s still too much food.

      Reply
  2. Lisa

    We always request to sit alone, and that request has always been granted. At the end of the day we are all tired and last thing we want to be is social with people we barely know!

    Reply
    1. Jennifer

      Oh my gosh, I thought my husband and I were the only ones who felt this way!! The only time we were seated with others (ironically, on the Wonder), we wound up skipping MDR more often than not. As bummed as we were to miss MDR food, it was worth it to us to avoid having to socialize when we’re that tired!

      Reply
  3. beth

    Thanks for the trip report! Glad to read that the servers are good – I was a bit concerned after your first post on this trip!

    I have friends who were on the Radiance doing the Great Alaskan Running Cruise – something I did for 2 years (once on HAL (EWWWWWW!!!!) and once on Radiance (enjoyed RCCL) and I was always soooooooo glad that we were never in port on a day the Wonder was because especially the first year (HAL year) I would have been SOOOOOOO sad to see a Disney ship and NOT be getting on it.

    Enjoy the rest of your trip!!

    Reply
  4. Ben Passanando

    this looks really fun! a couple of questions… do you normally skip the shows? and how much did the rabbit pelt cost you?

    Reply
    1. Scott Sanders Post author

      Ben, I do not recall the cost of the pelt. I imagine it was less than $15. Yes, we normally skip most of the shows with a few exceptions. However, we do regularly see the special guest performers.

      Reply
  5. Deann Fleming

    We also went to Alaska this year on the first trip in May. In Ketchikan we used the free downtown shuttle (has brightly colored fish painted on the sides of the bus) to get around town. You catch it at the bus stop just past the tourist information center . The bus stop has a green roof and is facing towards the city street. Besides the museum where we used our National Park pass, we also stopped at the Heritage Totem Center. For a $5.00 fee we got to see a museum shaped like a Alaskan indian clan house filled with relics, photos and real totems along with informative ushers that had a wealth of information. Well worth the short ride on the bus. The free shuttle makes a big loop around to Creek Street, museum and to the Totem center as well as a long loop to the local Walmart.

    Reply
  6. Theresa

    Our family was able to visit the Tongass Historical Museum for free because our 4th grader (rising 5th grader) was eligible for the National Park’s “Every Kid in a Park” program. We signed up online, printed out a voucher and turned it in for a National Parks pass. I believe we could have used it at Mendenhall too. The museum was a great place to spend a rainy morning!

    Reply

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