Zuiderdam To Alaska – Day 6 – Ketchikan

As it has been for the every single morning aboard the Zuiderdam – it was an early one for me. 7 am on the dot and I was getting ready to begin my day.

I first headed up to the Crow’s Nest for a morning cinnamon roll and to finish writing my post from the day before. I took a seat right at the forward windows above the bridge and enjoyed a panoramic view of our approach into Ketchikan. During our approach into our southernmost port of call, we followed the Sapphire Princess through the straights and passages into Ketchikan.

Later in the morning, I had the opportunity to sit down with Boban Zivkovic, the Zuiderdam’s Hotel Director. During my time talking with Boban, he discussed what life aboard the Zuiderdam is like for crew and what the daily operations aboard are like. It was a pleasure to meet Boban and I look forward to sharing his interview with you later this coming week.

Soon we were docked in Ketchikan and we disembarked the Zuiderdam one last time. Ketchikan has a nice boardwalk that runs from the first docked cruise ship to the last. This boardwalk is the main connection to downtown Ketchikan and many of the local attractions. We walked this boardwalk all the way to Creek St. This street is actually a small historical section of Ketchikan that is completely built on stilts over a white water river. The street is filled with local shops, restaurants, bars, and even residential space for Ketchikan residents. This small, somewhat hidden part of town is one of the most unique spots you can visit on an Alaskan cruise.

After our short day visit to Ketchikan, it was time to board the Zuiderdam one more and final time. While it was sad to think that this would be the last time this cruise I would board her, I was glad to still have one more day of sailing to be onboard.

Around 5 pm, our lines were pulled in and we pushed off from our dock in Ketchikan. We began making our way down the river towards open water to begin our voyage back to Vancouver. Soon, as Ketchikan began to fade in the distance, it was time for dinner.

Our restaurant tonight: Pinnacle Grill. Pinnacle Grill is Holland America Line’s specialty steakhouse and offers a wide variety of tender cuts and other equally delicious dishes. Tonight I chose the seafood platter as my starter and the 10 oz filet mignon as my main dish. The seafood platter featured fresh salmon, shrimp, and other fish cuts. The dish was very good and was enhanced by the wasabi side sauce. The filet mignon was cooked perfectly, tender but also juicy. Simply delicious. Pinnacle Grill exceeded my expectations and my dining experiences throughout the other onboard restaurants. Hands down – my favorite.

A bit after dinner, a contest was being held in the Signature Shops to win a secret prize. All you had to do was guess which of three necklaces was fake amber. My mom decided to enter and actually ended up winning the entire contest. Not only did she guess the correct fake necklace, but her name was then chosen out of all the entrants to win a pair of amber earrings. My mom never thought she would win, but the Zuiderdam must be a ship full of luck!

The night continued after dinner when I had the opportunity to meet with Captain Turner, our Master; Boban, our Hotel Director; Hamish, our Cruise Director; among other senior officers onboard. Captain Turner was holding a special VIP event in the Crow’s Nest, allowing guests the chance to meet and mingle with the ship’s officers. I had a great time talking with Captain Turner and getting to know him better. The event was truly great and a fitting way to end our final port of call day.

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Mike Faust

Mike Faust is an avid world traveler, often found traversing city streets in Asia and Europe rather than his home city of Boca Raton. Mike has touched down in 39 countries, set sail on 35 cruises, and flown over 400,000 lifetime miles.