"" Writer's Wanderings: Aboard The Golden Princess

Monday, September 16, 2013

Aboard The Golden Princess

When you combine the facts, it was a no-brainer to choose to take an Alaskan cruise this month. First off, the price was right starting at $799 for an 8 night cruise. Next, it was roundtrip from Seattle where we could spend time before and after with our grandkids (and their parents of course). Lastly, it was about to be our 45th wedding anniversary. It wasn’t long before we found ourselves aboard the Golden Princess and Alaska bound.

After three wonderful days in the Seattle area with our family, we drove down to the cruise terminal where the Golden Princess and the Oosterdam were docked and taking on passengers. The kids were excited to see the huge “boat” that we were to take to Alaska in order to find a baby black bear to bring back to them. More to come on that later. They spent the afternoon in Seattle and found a little park where they could watch our ship pull out of port at four.
Prepared with a pool towel of blue and white stripes and the number of the life boat we were standing under, we messaged them to watch for us. Unfortunately the sun was behind us and at such an angle that they really couldn’t see us. I could see them though through my camera lens and snapped at shot of them waving from the shore. We did garner some attention from other passengers as we waved our pool towel—knowing smiles from other grandparents as we explained.

This was our first time on the Golden Princess although we have sailed aboard many other Princess ships. We had upgraded to a mini suite which has a nice balcony and is a little larger room. After all, it was our anniversary trip. It comes with two TVs, one behind the other on the center console. One points at the bed and the other the sitting area. We knew from past experience that you have to be careful how you point the remote or you will turn one off and the other on and it can become a vicious cycle.
While in many ways the Golden Princess is like other Princess ships, there are a few changes to note. For one, we were amazed at how small the library is. The internet café takes up most of the space. There are no chairs for reading and very few books. I wondered if it was because so many people have eReaders now?
The Skywalkers Lounge/Nightclub is truly unique. It is the highest point on the ship for passengers. There is a glassed walkway leading to it with a moving sidewalk in the center which was not operational for some reason. Once in the lounge area however, you have a wonderful view off the back of the ship. While we were there our first day at sea meeting with Cruise Critic friends, we were able to see some whales. And then there were the dolphins. But I’ll save that story for the next post.

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