On the way to Seward to board the ship we stopped in Anchorage for lunch. I saw signs on lunch carts that you'd normally wouldn't see in the lower 48 states. It was delicious, similar to kielbasa.

Mag & bear 2

The next stop was at the Alyeska resort, a 4 star hotel in Girdwood. Nestled in a mountain range, the weather was getting cloudy as we arrived. Looking around in the lobby I was impressed by a display featuring a stuffed polar bear in snowy tundra.

Included with our room cards were passes for a ride on the tram, a cable card that takes you up the side of a mountain to an observation area 2,300 feet high. There was a gift shop, deli, and formal restaurant called the Seven Glaciers. Maggie and I decided to stop in for supper. Although we didn't have a reservation the staff found us a table very quickly and we enjoyed a scrumptious meal while watching guests ride the tram.

When we finished our meal Maggie headed for the gift shop while I checked out the views. I managed to video tape a guy walking off a cliff while strapped to a parachute!

We boarded the tram for the return trip and the weather was showing some sun, so the camera was given a work-out. Back in the room later we heard a knock at the door. Upon opening we were greeted by a member of the staff handing out chocolate treats for our bedtime snack.

That next morning we walked outside the lobby to check out the gardens with many types of flowering plants. Some of the couples from our tour group were sitting around a fireplace waiting to get on our bus.

Our land tour continued by bus on the Seward Highway to, yep, Seward, Alaska. The last stop before the boat was at the Alaska SeaLife Center. A large mural filled the side of a building across the street depicting a school of whales swimming past.

seal4

The Center was a building with many aquariums holding fish and crabs. Seals and birds were in separate pools where you could walk around them for watching and photographing. It was as good as the national aquariums I had viewed in Boston and Washington, DC.

mag & fish

We walked around meeting Geri and Johnny near the snack bar. Johnny and I compared images that we had captured.

anenome

The children were very impressed with view available showing the seal pool from below.

Maggie and I ventured outside to see the seals and birds swimming about. It was noisy and wet as they splashed in the compounds. While we were photographing the seals it was noted that there was a visitor to the Center that you could see from our position. We looked about to find a bald eagle that had landed on a nearby building and was in no hurry to leave. Another photo opportunity.

After a couple of hours we boarded the buses to drive across town. At the dock we were greeted by the Royal Caribbean Radiance of the Sea, ready to take us to the Hubbard glacier.

Anchorage and Seward, Alaska

Tia's

hotel Alyeska

polar bear

inside tram

view from tram

flowers

passengers

whale mural Seward

fish

fish again

seal

seal 3

bird

eagle3