A balcony is a semi-private place to be able to watch the views go by. You won't have to fight for space on the public open decks to be able to see the view. You will be able to step out from your room onto a space that is considered only yours & your cabin-mates to see to the views of Alaska.
Many cruise lines and ships that sail to Alaska have at least one scenic cruising day built into an itinerary. Some cruise lines go to Glacier Bay National Park while others go through Tracy Arm Fjord. On scenic cruise days the outside decks crowd very quickly because railing space is limited, especially at the front of the ship. If you have a balcony you can sit or stand on your balcony and not have to worry about finding a spot to get some great pictures.
Are you worried that because your balcony is on one side you won't get to see the other? Cruise ships typically will turn 360 degrees at glaciers or big landmarks to allow both sides to see the view. Other times cruise ships will enter a fjord and cruise to a certain point and then turn around to come out. One side gets the view on the trip up and the other side gets the view coming back. Before booking check with your cruise line to find out what their procedure is with this matter.
What will I see from my balcony? You will get to see the view and you will also have a chance of seeing wildlife from the ship. On my recent trip to Alaska I got to see a pod of whales, seals, and many different types of birds from my balcony.
Are you worried about children and a balcony stateroom? Worrying about your children on a balcony is a valid concern of many parents. Many cruise ships have bolts or locks on balcony doors that are high up to prevent small children from unlocking them. If this is a concern of yours contact your cruise line to find out about balcony locks on your ship. Another concern of yours may be the railing. Railing heights may vary by ship so you will probably want to find out details about the railing from your cruise line. If your children listen to your directions you could tell them that they are not allowed on the balcony without a trusted adult and that they are not allowed to climb the rail, furniture or sit on the rail. Don't let your children be unsupervised on the balcony! If you don't think your children are old enough to be on a balcony (supervised or unsupervised) you should consider sticking with an interior or a stateroom with a window.
Getting a balcony stateroom is a great way to see Alaska and I recommend a balcony to anyone who is planning a trip to Alaska. You are probably already paying a large amount on money to go to Alaska, so why not pay a little more to be able to enjoy the view from the comfort of your own stateroom?