I. Bring Binoculars
You may have excellent eyesight, but if you want to zoom in on an animal for a better view you may want to consider bringing binoculars.
II. You May Want A Room With A Balcony Or At Least An Outside View
The public outside decks on a cruise ship are great for looking outside, but if you plan on being outside trying to spot wildlife for long periods of time you will probably want to have a balcony or window. Rooms with a view are usually more expensive and you should only get these rooms if you plan on enjoying the view.
III. Purchase A Guide Book On Alaska Wildlife
If you want to spot, but also identify the wildlife, you should consider buying a book that will help you learn more Alaska wildlife. This could make some great pre-cruise reading and onboard the ship you can use your book when you are spotting wildlife.
IV. Never Feed Birds (Or Any Other Wildlife)
Most cruise ships prohibit feeding birds and wildlife from the ship's public decks and balconies. If you try to feed birds you will most likely attract more birds than you would want. The birds could make the decking messy and/or obstruct the ship's navigation. Don't do this because you will most likely get in trouble by the ship and in some cases, environmental agencies.
V. You Don't Necessarily Have To Go On A Whale Watching Shore Excursion To See Whales
If you watch closely you will most likely see whales from your cruise ship. You may not in all cases, but many times there are whales close to the cruise ship. You don't have to pay to go on a shore excursion to see whales. However, whale watching is a great shore excursion for those that want to try to get closer to the whales.
VI. What You See Will Vary Based On Where Your Ship Cruises To & The Time of Year
Please keep in mind the wildlife you see in Alaska may vary based on where your ship cruises and the time of the cruise season. Don't go with your hopes up to see on particular animal, but then get disappointed because you didn't see that animal. Enjoy Alaska and have a great cruise!
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