Our first day in Seward, we embarked on a day cruise ship named the “Orca Voyager” with the wonderful Kenai Fjords Tours and sailed in to the Gulf of Alaska to see glaciers and wildlife. We saw orcas, sea lions, otters, puffins and other birds, and the humpback whale).

 

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Just to give an idea where Seward is in Alaska.

 

 

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Our cruise took this yellow trail. We left at 10 AM, and got back past 6 PM. Picture from http://nomad.hu/~bszabi/niagara_dosszie/alaska/

 

The Seward harbor and our cruise ship, the Orca Voyager.

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Just to give an idea where Seward is in Alaska.

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Our ship, the Orca Voyager

 

Otter – before docking the ship in the morning, we found an otter chewing away on a fish right next to the harbor boardwalk. Pretty adorable 🙂

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Orcas (Killer Whales) – I wasn’t able to get many good photos of the orcas, but they’re one of my favorite animals! This photo came out alright.

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Humpback Whale – another aspect of our trip (like the weather during our Denali tour and the weather during the cruise), we found a humpback whale (probably a young one according to the ship captain) that jumped almost 30-40 times, and waved to us, sort of showing off. But it was a beautiful sight. My dream is to see more dolphins ❤ in my home state, in Atlantic City.

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Humpback whale posing with a glacier. Probably my favorite photo of the day, perhaps the week!

 

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Stitched a couple of continuous shutter photos together!

 

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The was real close to the ship for this picture. I wish i didn’t cut off a little of the nose though, haha!

 

 

 

Alakik Glacier – this glacier could be gone in a couple years!

 

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Alakik Glacier

 

Birds – there were lots of seagulls, puffins, and other birds, but most of them were very small to see. Puffins especially. Without binoculars or anything, it was hard to see the cute faces of the puffins. But there were so many. The captain liked to point out large puffins to us; she said that there are puffins who have eaten so much that they can’t fly, and when they try they end up failing. That’s sort of adorable :). At the Wildlife Center in Seward that my brother and I visited on Day 6, so look out for some adorable puffin pictures on my post for that day!

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Soooo many birds.

Sea Lions – these water had a couple sea lions that are called “Stellar Sea Lions.” They are branded with a letter/number combination, for studies. I found a link online to a spreadsheet that tracks where they’ve been seen.

 

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Sea Lion posing with seagulls.

 

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Sea Lions napping. The darker sea lion climbing up is a “Stellar Sea Lion.” He is branded with letters to track him for studies inside these waters.

 

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First thought this could be mother and child. However, my dad said he read that female sea lions are much smaller than male sea lions. So this could be a romantic photo ❤

We stopped by Fox Island, where they had a cafeteria that served us salmon, prime rib, and if you wanted, king crab for an extra fee, as part of the overall tour package. Then we returned home, finally, after an 8 hour trip.

Extra Tidbit: The Van Gilder Hotel (Alaska’s Oldest Hotel) – for two of our three nights at Seward, we staid at the historical place called The Van Gilder Hotel. It’s very historic and has been placed by the U.S. Department of the Interior as a part of the National Register of Historical Places. Essentially the hotel has kept his architecture very much the same and using their old fashion beds and antique furniture. There are obviously renovations , such as added TVs and bathrooms. There were still bathrooms and even a shower room in the hall of the floor I stayed on.

After we left, my brother said that there is a myth about a ghost inside the Hotel, called “The Ghost of Fanny Guthry-Baehm” (there’s even a book about it). I’m glad he told me after we left, or I may have been freaked out. The synopsis of the book linked above says “Fannie Guthrie-Baehm was murdered in room 201 in 1947, and her ghost has been witnessed by many over the years.” Oh my. Chills. Would I recommend the hotel? I’m not sure. I liked the historical vibe, but it wasn’t as comfortable as a normal hotel. Also, now that I’ve read up on the myth, it’s spooky. But the owner was nice and helpful!

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The TV was put really high up (top left corner, mostly cut off in photo). Antique lamp and phone on the right side of the photo.

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Day 5 coming up soon :). Thanks for reading!

Read about my previous days clicking on the labeled photos below:

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Day 0: 30 Hour Trip

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Day 1: Denali National Park

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Day 2: Rain in Talkeetna

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Day 3: Talkeetna to Seward, and Views