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Radiance of the Seas – Alaska

Radiance of the Seas – Alaska


When I told the kids were we going on a cruise to Alaska this summer that looked at me like I was from another planet and asked “Why Alaska?” I told them that Alaska was a huge state and had a lot of things to do and see.   Plus, I really wanted to see the glaciers before they were all gone from global warming. When searching 7 night cruise sailing itineraries on Royal Caribbean, I found a few choices.  We could leave out of Vancouver, Seattle or Seward.  Since we had never been to Vancouver, we decided to go on the “Radiance of the Seas” leaving from Vancouver. They offered what I considered to be a great itinerary with stops along the inside passage.


RCI_7Night_Hubbard Glacier_Vancouver
Radiance of the Sea- 7 Night Alaska Itinerary
Radiance of the Seas near Hubbard Glacier


We arrived at the Vancouver cruise terminal in the early afternoon and were processed rapidly through check-in.  In just a few minutes, we had our pictures taken, were given our sea pass cards, and we were onto the ship.


Vancouver Cruise Terminal
Exploring the ship while docked at Vancouver Cruise Terminal


The entrance onto the Radiance of the Seas is into a main lobby on Deck 4 called “The Centrum”, which is open all the way up to Deck12.  The Centrum has several seating areas, the Lobby Bar, the Guest Relations and Explorations desk, and a small stage for musical acts. The open area in the middle of the Centrum provides a space to dance and for game shows. Located far above Deck 4 and spanning all decks is a wonderful sculpture, elegant and flowing. A unique feature about this sculpture is that at night, the lights located on the sides of the centrum play across the sculpture, changing in color, shape, and pattern.


The Centrum, Radiance of the Seas
The Centrum, Radiance of the Seas


I had reserved two “Deluxe Ocean View Balcony” staterooms next to each other.  The Deluxe Balcony staterooms have floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors that lead to private verandas; two twin beds that convert to a queen-sized bed; considerable closet space; a private bathroom with shower; and a living area with desk, drawer space, vanity, and sofa. Each stateroom also has its own flat-screen television, thermostat controlled air-conditioning, internet access, direct-dial telephone, radio, mini bar, individual safe, and 24 hour room service.  Our stateroom had a queen size bed, and the kids next door had two twin beds with a dropdown bed over the sofa.  It was perfect because it allowed the kids to utilize their sofa to watch TV.


Ocean Balcony Room, Radiance of the Seas



The ship offers plenty of activities on board: Mini Golf Course, Basketball Court, Rock-Climbing Wall, Jogging Track, and a Fitness Center, with classes including Yoga and Tai Chi.  There’s also the Casino Royale.  Most of the table games have a $5 minimum and $200 maximum.


Mini Golf Course, Radiance of the Seas
Basketball Court at Radiance of the Seas
Rock Climbing Wall at Radiance of the Seas
Fitness Gym, Radiance of the Seas
Jogging Track, Radiance of the Seas
Casino Royale, Radiance of the Seas



The Radiance of the Seas has three pools including the Solarium, an adults-only retreat, and three whirlpools. Another way to relax is in it’s VitalitySM Spa with an extensive treatment menu including massages and acupuncture.


Solarium, Radiance of the Seas
Pool Area, Radiance of the Seas
Pool Area, Radiance of the Seas
Pool Area, Radiance of the Seas


Deck 4  contains the lower level of the bi-level main dining restaurant called Cascades, which offers complimentary, multi-course dining for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Cascades is a wonderful place to enjoy dinner after a long day in port.   We opted for the my-time dining option, which allowed us to select the time each day we wanted to have dinner.   You also have a choice of sharing a table with others in different groups or requesting your own private table for your group.   We requested our own table, since we were a group of five.   Windjammer Cafe is also open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Some of the other specialty dining restaurants on board charge a cover charge (example $25 per person) and you can order anything you’d like off the menu, or sample from a la carte menus at select venues. My favorite restaurants were: Chops Grille steakhouse (the steak was delicious), Izumi Japanese Cruise (loved the sushi and california rolls), and Giovanni’s Italian Restaurant (great pasta dishes).

  • Chops Grille signature steakhouse
  • Izumi Japanese cuisine, featuring a la carte sushi selections.
  • Giovanni’s Table Italian restaurant
  • Samba Grill Brazilian Steakhouse
  • Rita’s Cantina for Mexican-fare favorites
  • Chef’s Table intimate dining experience


Windjammer Restaurant, Radiance of the Seas
Windjammer Restaurant, Radiance of the Seas
Rita’s Catina Restaurant, Radiance of the Seas
Izumi Japanese Cuisine, Radiance of the Seas
chop house
Chops Grille, Radiance of the Seas
Alaska Sunset on Radiance of the Seas


We took our cruise in August and the weather was very predictable (wet and cold).   Some of these towns along the way are only accessible either by boat or my plane.   Some of the excursions are depended on the weather.   We were scheduled to go on a helicopter ride to the top of a glacier dog sledding.   The fog was so bad that her excursion was cancelled because no helicopters or planes could fly that day.   Just be prepared with a plan “B” in case…




Alaska is breathtakingly beautiful.   We disembarked at 7 a.m. and walked right off the ship with no line to meet our 8 a.m. bus to the Anchorage airport. Have you been to Alaska?

About the author

Carmen Edelson is the Founder of Carmen's Luxury Travel. Carmen has been traveling the world for over a decade. Our travels allows her the opportunity to pursuit her itch to travel to the best luxury destinations, and experience those first class tastes from around the world.


  1. Vicky Alonso [MissArretrancos]
    September 27, 2014 at 8:02 pm

    OMG! The ship looks like a city! 😀 I have never been on a cruise.

    • Carmen
      September 27, 2014 at 8:56 pm

      Hi Vicky, It’s about a mid size ship compared to some of the others on Royal Caribbean. After being on the Oasis of the Seas all ships look small to me. 🙂

  2. Adelina // Pack Me To
    September 30, 2014 at 10:27 pm

    I went on a similar cruise up the inner passage. We went to the same places as you with the exception of Seward. It’s so beautiful up there! This ship looks pretty comfortable too.

    • Carmen
      October 1, 2014 at 4:18 pm

      Hi Adelina, Alaska is such a beautiful place. We didn’t really spend any time in Seward. Once our ship docked we got on a bus to take us to the Anchorage airport.

  3. Tim
    October 4, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    The only cruise ship I have been on is the Queen Mary and that never left dock. This is quite a change and looks amazing.

    • Carmen
      October 28, 2014 at 3:59 pm

      Hi Tim, It’s a totally different experience when you’re out at sea verses being docked.

  4. Stephanie
    January 23, 2015 at 12:53 am

    Hi Carmen
    I love your site! We are taking the exact cruise this July with our 2 teenage sons
    Any tips or advise you can give? This is our first cruise ever & my husband & I said we would never take a cruise! We have no idea what to expect
    We booked many excursions and are hopefully well prepared
    Thanks for any help you can give

    • Carmen
      January 23, 2015 at 11:06 pm

      Hi Stephanie,

      Glad you like my site. We spent five days in Vancouver with the kids before our cruise. They loved Vancouver! The weather in Alaska is hit or miss. Make sure you take a rain jacket with you and warm clothes. When we went the weather was terrible, mostly raining and very cold. One of the excursions that the kids really wanted to do was dog sledding on a glacier. We were suppose to travel in a helicopter to the top of a glacier and go sledding. The fog was so think that day that they cancelled all the flights. I would highly recommend the Glassblowing in Skagway too. If you click on the tabs under the excursions above. You can read about our excursions.

  5. Stephanie
    January 25, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    Hi Carmen
    Thanks so much for the tips
    We are looking forward to it!

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