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INDULGENT ADVENTURES - Travel, adventure and windswept dreams.

Guest Review: Canadian Rockies & Glacier Bay, Alaska APT Tour


Ever wondered what the APT Tour of the Canadian Rockies with a 7 day cruise to Alaska is like? Should a trip to the Rockies and Alaska be on your bucket list? Our Guest Reporter Ruth shares her experience of the tour and the wonders of Glacier Bay, Lake Louise and The Rocky Mountaineer.

Lake Louise reflections, Lake Louise, Canada.

Lake Louise reflections, Lake Louise, Banff, Canada.

I chose the APT 21 day tour of the Canadian Rockies with a 7 day Alaska cruise. The benefit of traveling with the APT tour group was their attention to your accommodation.  We stayed in some amazing hotels.  They had character aplenty and were often chosen for their views of the Canadian Rockies.   

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The Fairmont, Banff Springs, Canada.

What were the OMG moments & highlights? 

There were so many highlights that it’s hard to list them all, however:

Glacier Bay, Alaska.

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Amazing ice patterns, Glacier Bay, Alaska, USA.

The absolute highlight was the few hours we spent in Glacier Bay.  The view of the glaciers was spectacular, with a backdrop of the constant cracking of the ice.  It was also amazing to witness (and catch on film) the calving of some of the glaciers.

Glacier Bay, Canada.

Calving Glaciers, Glacier Bay, Alaska, USA.

     Lake Louise, Banff.  

Lake Louise at sunrise - from the hotel room window.    Lake Louise reflections.   The Fairmont, Lake Louise, Canada.

Lake Louise from the dining room at the Fairmont Chateau. Fairmont Chateau, Lake Louise, Canada.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lake Louise was another highlight.  The view from the Fairmont at sunrise as light was reflected onto the mountain and the lake was amazing.   

Lake Louise at sunrise, Lake Louise, Canada.

Lake Louise at sunrise, Lake Louise, Banff, Canada.

Rocky Mountaineer Gold Class

The Rocky Mountaineer crossing The Rockies. Canada.

The Rocky Mountaineer crossing The Rockies. Canada.

Two days on the Rocky Mountaineer was included in this tour.  It was worth the extra money to travel Gold Class on this train – so you could relax in luxury with a full glass roof above us allowing us to keep our eyes peeled for wildlife as the spectacular scenery scrolled by.   

On the Tour…

This is an amazing trip that I’d recommend to anyone that doesn’t have the time or the inclination to organise their own tour.  The APT tour was at the luxury end of the market, but for this trip it was definitely worth it.

Our tour was organised with the land component first, and then the cruise.  This was an excellent way to travel – the land component was long enough for us to have made firm friends with some fellow tourers, so we had lots of good company on the cruise.  

Our tour guide Dale was amazing and was with us every day, which may have been over the top.  But she quietly took care of all the details and dealt with the issues arising from some of the less engaged travellers who had trouble listening to instructions beyond ‘good morning’ .  Dale kept such a tight ship that most people were on time, most of the time.   

The retreating ice at Glacier Bay, Alaska.

The retreating ice at Glacier Bay, Alaska, USA.

Anything you would change?    

If I had my time again, I’d stick to the old adage that you should never eat seafood away from the coast.   Thankyou Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise for both serving the delicious but too well-travelled scallops. (And then for the head of security giving me his firm ‘medical’ opinion that it was certainly not food poisoning – they’ve never had a confirmed case of it at their hotel.  Since returning home, I’ve discovered that a friend had a remarkably similar incident at the same hotel, right down to the same discussion with the head of security!!) (Ed:’You have been warned!’)   

Catch of the day! Fresh Salmon & Bears! Canada.

Catch of the day! Fresh Salmon & Bears! Ketchikan, Canada.

The Logistics & Statistics    

APT were a great choice of tour company – everything was well planned, and their itinerary was very well chosen.  Any time in summer should be OK for this trip, and 21 days was about right.       

Must do rating:  6/5

Sleep rating:  3/5

Work recovery rating:  5/5

Relaxation rating:  3/5

Final words of wisdom?

If you’re going on an organised tour, make sure each person has good sized hand luggage as well as their day pack.  That allows you to put your main bags out for collection at the ungodly hour prescribed by the tour group, but you’ll be able to have a shower after that and store your overnight things under the bus instead of carrying them with you all day.

 

 

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Cute Marmot, Lake Louise, Canada.

Did this trip make your bucket list?  If you were interested in the tour Ruth did make sure you see Special Spotters page for links. Special Spotters Alaska You will also find links to some of the best Alaskan cruise deals currently. Bon Voyage! Ed.




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