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dickinson

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    Columbia, Md

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  1. We were on a six day land tour. We could have chosen connoisseur but chose Denali Explorer. Started in Anchorage then on to Denali and from there Mt Mkinley lodge (it’s near Talkeetna ). We were bussed between lodges except took train from Mt McKinley lodge to the ship. Apparently that train, especially on a Saturday in case that makes a difference) was Alaska RR. All seats are preassigned. If you have problems contact Princess customer service in advance. I’m sure there is a special needs department.
  2. The “old” way isn’t old. Alaska RR cars have the tables. They use them from Talkeetna to Whittier. A five hour train ride.
  3. I would suggest to anyone traveling from Talkeetna an Whittier that if you have a problem riding backwards to contact Princess about your issue. They assign the seats in advance.
  4. Going from McKinley Lodge to the ship. Alaska Railroad cars. Someone said Princess cars are two stories. This train has none of those. The point is .... not all cars are individual seats as I thought because of some thread I read. BTW the few employees we interacted with were all very nice. The manager gave me a book about the train etc that they usually sell. I also have tons of leg room and space to keep my backpack.
  5. I remember reading on here that the seats were no longer with a table and four people with two being backwards. Well I’m on it now And the whole train has those tables. Because I can’t ride backwards and the other people we were seated with were not willing to switch (can’t blame them) we had to move to the snack car. Not bad but not a domed car and no commentary. Just wanted to let others know. Maybe Princess cars have everyone riding forward but no guarantees you get one. If you need to face forward maybe contacting Princess in advance would help.
  6. We too bought them at $10. Great deal!
  7. They run every half hour. First bus departs Princess at 6 am. It stops at Denali Bus Depot (where you buy your tickets and I assume get the bus into the park) in 10 minutes. Next is Horseshoe Lake Trail (5 min later), Visitor Center (another 5 min later), then back to Princess (10 min later). Rinse and repeat all day long. Last bus leave Princess at 7 pm. Visitor Center hours are 8 am - 6 pm. I wish I had known about this as we would have gone there the day we arrived. I didn't have time to do enough research for various reasons.
  8. I read on here somewhere within the past month or two about someone who got a partial refund because they had the Senior National Park Pass. We are now here at the Princess Denali Lodge and went on the tour today. Before leaving we checked at the front desk and were told we had to take the hotel shuttle to the park "bus Depot" stop. After our tour we had time to do it. Well worth it because we received a refund of $30! We just showed our park pass along with our paper that showed we were signed up for the tour. They said we could have gone before or after the tour. I wanted to post this because it is not something I have read on here except that one time so there may be many people who are not aware.
  9. We are in the middle of our Denali Explorer cruisetour. We started in Fairbanks. Their restaurants were not too bad. Choices expensive to medium. You can also put out on your door that you want to conserve. They won't make up your room and will give you a $5 credit off food. We are now at Denali. Same $5 credit. Took the Tundra Wilderness Tour. Definitely stopped at least 4 times. As for food, there are lots of choices. As mentioned earlier there are places across the street. When we got here we at lunch at Subway. Dinner we ate at the Lodge at the Pizza place. Today we had a quick breakfast at their quick restaurant where you buy and then sit and eat or leave. They have cereal boxes, oatmeal boxes, granola bars, fruit, etc. For dinner we ate at their burger joint. $11 for a burger and $5 extra if you want fries or onion rings. Chicken sandwich was same price. If we were on connoisseur tour we would have eaten at the more expensive places.... but you are paying for it before hand and then some I am sure. Basically, it seems like people really like the connoisseur tour but if you feel it will bust your budget don't be disappointed to take Denali Explorer. As an FYI - Somewhere on cc I read only one time that someone who took the Tundra Wilderness Tour was told that if they were a senior they could show their senior national park pass and get a partial refund. We checked into it and discovered we had to take the free shuttle bus from the hotel to the park's ticket office (bus depot). Ten minute ride. We showed the pass and our itinerary that you get at each lodge (which also states any excursions). We saved a total of $30 !!! Well worth it. They told us it could have been done before we took the tour too not just after.
  10. Depending on your mobility issues it may not be walkable. It really isn’t just on the other side of the parking lot. Maybe there is another way but we walked out the front door of the lodge and had to walk around the building...part of which was a gravel path (it was short). Then we had to walk by the Pike’s Landing hotel. Easy walk for able body but not mobility impaired.
  11. We ate at Pike’s restaurant. It’s in walking distance. Good and juicy grilled chicken sandwich.
  12. We are there now. Had heard nothing about the fire.
  13. This is why one should always read cruise critic 😉 I believe the uproar spurred Princess to allow exceptions up until a certain date (which may have been in Dec). Sorry you missed it.
  14. Zalusky - So it sounds like in 2014 you had TWO bathroom stops... not just one as you previously stated. Sounds like they must have added another stop (or your driver drove right by it). Princess' description says you stop every 90 minutes.
  15. dickinson

    Bug Spray

    Thanks! We don't plan on much hiking but will be outside quite a bit. I am very attractive to insects that bite 😞
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