Not that we are cruise crazy having only done about nine cruises since 2001.
We have completed cruises of a 28 day cruise duration, 14 days, 10 days , 7 days and a wedding anniversary cruise of 3 days last year (May 2011) on the Golden Princess from Los Angeles to Vancouver.
|Golden Princess at Ogden Point (by Robbar)
It was all sea days, lovely , relaxing and we went from warm to cool days as we cruised up the Pacific Coast. When we docked it was a zoo with four ships in Vancouver at the same time and thankfully I booked us overnight at a boutique Hotel with a chocolate fountain instead of rushing back to Vancouver Island.
The above is to set the stage for this cruise per my prior post.
This year we elected to celebrate our wedding anniversary (May 2012) by another short cruise but on the Island Princess from Los Angeles to Vancouver for 5 days ( a repositioning cruise ).
|Princess Cruises: Island Princess Web Cam (by Princess)
As it would dock in Victoria we received approval to disembark on the 4th day. That would save us the expense of a oneway Air Flight to Victoria from Vancover including an overnight stay in a hotel.
Going down we booked air from Victoria to Los Angeles with an overnight hotel in San Pedro and a minisuite. Then it was to be on to the ship for some sea days and a day in San Francisco, even found a special prepaid SIM card and rate for using our mobile in the USA .
About three weeks prior, got all the papers from my Travel Agent, printed out my Sea and Air tickets including luggage tags. Discovered though that Air Canada only allows one bag per person at a charge while two or more are very expensive.
Two – three weeks prior came down with a cough and felt all would be fine but it developed into a hacking cough all the time and any idea of it being fine to board the ship became very remote.
Saw my physician who said it had gone viral so going onboard a cruise ship would go against the health question form for sure in bringing onboard.
So, two days prior I had to cancel all the arrangements.
It was a tough call but the right one as the hacking cough got worse during what would have been our planned cruise days,
Hopefully we can do this again for 2013
I thought I’d post some recent good news in showing how the partnership of good corporate companies that work with local cruise port mangement does benefit us all in tourism and our community.
Currently we have had about 58 cruise ships docking at Victoria BC Ogden point which means about 116,000 visitors and 171 cruise ships docking still to occur during the 2012 Alaska season.
Victoria Ogden Point and its Harbour Authority is actively involved in updating its cruise facilities including ensuring enviromental needs are addressed.
This year the city recognized Princess Cruises and Holland America.
|Picture by Princess Cruises
Quote from Princess Cruises :
The Victoria, BC Ogden Point Eco Award recognizes cruise lines who go above and beyond in their efforts to reduce emissions while in the port of Victoria, including using low-sulfur fuel. The award cited four Princess ships that called in Victoria during 2011—Golden Princess, Island Princess, Sapphire Princess, and Sea Princess.
The company’s environmental goals and policies go beyond what is required by law and include a zero solid waste discharge policy, state-of-the-art environmental technology and waste management equipment, programs to minimize waste generated, and recycling where possible. The company also pioneered the use of shore power programs in the cruise industry to reduce air emissions.
End of quote……………………………..
In the case of Holland America it also has the ability to use shore power and of the 229 ship visits this year , had we (Ogden Point) offered shore power then 75 of those visits would have been able to switch from onboard gas / disel to electrical. shore power. Electrical power for Ogden Point is Hydro generated by water and for all of Vancouver Island.
Our Harbour Authority has now commisioned a study and will be actively taking the next steps to this goal much like Vancouver and Seattle have done.
|Ogden Point Pilot Boat Moorage (pic by Robbar)
Well, the Crystal Serenity http://www.crystalcruises.com/ was in on April 17, 2012 all day at Ogden Point , Victoria BC and the next ship Norwegian Pearl http://www2.ncl.com/ is due in for May 4, 2012.
After that we are scheduled to see multiple ships arrive each week until October 24, 2012, a total of 229 ships including 22 visits of the Disney Wonder. http://disneycruise.disney.go.com/?sourcecode=16527&CMP=KNC-DCLCanBrandGold|G|4123801.CN.AM.K3501.04
Next year we are expecting to see Celebrity Solstice http://www.celebritycruises.com/explore/ships/detail.do?shipCode=SL&cid=ps_gcn_solstice%20ship_q4ps_1110
arrive and our piers have been extended to accommodate the newer ships.
|Picture by Celebrity (Solstice Grand Epernay Dining Room)
The Victoria Harbour Authority has been making changes since last year to accommodate ships, passengers and crews including working with the local community to spread the traffic flow in ways to reduce noise and pollution. Ideas of having shuttle boats from the piers into the downtown area are being looked including having the Whale Boat Tours start at Ogden Point for cruise passengers.
|Ogden Point Cafe (picture by Ogden Point Cafe )
One recent announcement that will be interesting to watch is that the Ogden Point Cafe was announced as being sold but the operation will continue at the moment and the Dive Shop will remain.
Ogden Point Cafe has built up a following of locals and cruise ship passengers and crew where you can relax with good harbour views and excellent food.
The management changed the place last year so more seats were available and ordering ones food was more efficient for all.
I’ll add more later in May. /Cheers
Well, I just got back from Barbados after 5 weeks with family and discovered we have published the Ogden Point cruise schedule for 2012 out of Victoria BC Canada.
The first ship will visit on April 17, 2012 with the last one scheduled for October 24th, 2012.
We are currently scheduled for 229 ship visits , a lot of passengers and crew that will visit us during the 2012 Alaska Cruise schedule.
One of the newer visitors will be Disney Cruises with 22 + – dockings scheduled as she will be home porting out of Seattle, so we benefit.