Sailing to Alaska on the Celebrity Millennium – Day 1

This post is a couple of days late as we had no Internet for the first 3 days on the Millennium. According to a passenger I talked to who has been on the ship since she left Miami, it hasn’t worked for that entire time.

So, back to Friday, June 1st. We awoke to heavy rain, as was forecast – this was the view from our suite at the Delta Vancouver Suites at 06:38.


View from the Delta Vancouver Suites - in heavy rain

We went down to the 21st floor for breakfast in the Signature Club. Good food and a great view are included in the room rate – as is ultra-high-speed Internet access.


Signature club blacony at the Delta Vancouver Suites

Because of the dismal weather, we took a couple of taxis to Canada Place for early boarding. We actually arrived before check-in had started, but once the counter opened, the line moved very quickly, and we were exploring the ship by 11:30. By the time we got on board, the rain had stopped – a great bonus.

This is the new Qsine restaurant, which we made reservations for the first night.


Qsine restaurant on the Celebrity Millennium

Our cabin (#8146 on the starboard side) was ready at 1:30 as expected, and we were very pleased with it. This is the first Alaska cruise we’ve had a balcony on.


Cabin 8146 on the Celebrity Millennium

The gang is ready to cruise!! Cathy and I got a cabin on “the hump”, which angles out from the others, thus the unusual viewpoint.


On the Celebrity Millennium

Enjoying Vancouver’s scenery and harbour activity from our balcony.


Vancouver harbour

Loading can be interesting at times – this dog is apparently checking for drugs among the food.


Drug checking supplies coming aboard a cruise ship

This is Blu, a restaurant that we won’t get to try, as it’s for people booked into Aqua Class and Concierge level cabins exclusively. This is the only facility on the ship with that sort of restriction.


Blu, a restaurant on the Celebrity Millennium

Bistro on Five, another small specialty dining option that has a $5 cover charge.


Bistro on Five - specialty dining on the Celebrity Millennium

The staircase in the main atrium on Decks 5, 4 and 3.


The atrium on the Celebrity Millennium

Cafe al Bachio on Deck 5 has specialty coffees and wonderful pastries and mini-sandwiches. There’s a charge for the lattes and such, but not for the various treats.


Cafe al Bachio on Deck 5

4:30pm, getting ready for the sailaway on a dramatically nicer day.


Ready to sail to Alaska from Vancouver

A close look at the Westwood Olympia sitting at the container port next to Canada Place.


Westwood Olympia sitting at Vancouver's container port

“The girls” – friends for 28 years, off on a new adventure together. The boys are happy to tag along :)


Friends on an Alaska cruise ship

Looking over Stanley Park at Vancouver’s rapidly-changing skyline. Four days there wasn’t nearly enough, but we can fly down from Whitehorse fairly easily to continue exploring – it makes a great mid-winter break from our snow and deep cold.


Looking over Stanley Park at Vancouver's rapidly-changing skyline

Sailing under Lions Gate Bridge is impressive.


Sailing under Lions Gate Bridge at Vancouver

Freighters in English Bay waiting for docking positions.


Freighters in English Bay at Vancouver

We passed a small Canadian Navy ship near the Point Atkinson lighthouse. If I was at home I’d Google it to see what it was, but at 48 cents a minute for a 200-minute block of Internet time, I’m not going to do it now.


A small Canadian Navy ship

The historic Point Atkinson lighthouse. I used to go to the beautiful park there every now and then when I was growing up in Vancouver. Whenever a captain has brought the ship this close to the lighthouse I’ve always had a good cruise. A captain who works to get his passengers a good experience can make a huge difference in Alaska, and I have high hopes for Captain Zisis Taramas.


The historic Point Atkinson lighthouse

The Sunshine Coast of British Columbia is incredibly beautiful – even more so up close. Cathy and I often think about retiring there. This was shot at 6:15pm.


Sunshine Coast of British Columbia

We’d heard good reviews on Qsine, and we weren’t disappointed. Our main server, Tahbi, was a big part of the experience.


Tahbi, our server at Qsine on the Celebrity Millennium

“Did you have fun at Qsine?” Here’s a hint :) Manipulating the “Rubic’s Cube” is how you choose dessert – dinner is chosen with a multi-layered program on an iPad.


Having fun at Qsine on the Celebrity Millennium

I had to leave the Qsine party for a few minutes to go outside to capture this amazing sunset at 8:25. When I came back to the table and showed the rest of the group the photos, everyone went for a long look!


Sunset on the BC coast

Passing Campbell River at 10:10pm.


Passing Campbell River at 10:10pm.

A lovely evening to start an Alaska cruise.


A lovely evening to start an Alaska cruise.

In the narrow channel just north of Campbell River, the Sapphire Princess had to manoeuver around a very slow-moving log barge.


The nearly-full moon lights up the log barge. This was shot hand-held at 1/4 of a second, thus the lack of clarity.


What an excellent first day. I’l try to catch up to where we really are (Icy Strait Point) as quickly as is reasonable.

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5 Responses to Sailing to Alaska on the Celebrity Millennium – Day 1

  1. Rejeana says:

    Almost embarrassed to ask, but…are the toilet seats regular size seats or are they about an inch wide? They were that narrow on our last cruise.

  2. Andrea says:

    Wow. Beautiful ship! Definitely a step above the Century!

  3. Giles says:

    Looks like you will have a great time. I looked up that boat and it might be Torpedo and Sound Ranging Vessels CFAV Sikanni ?

  4. Pingback: Driving from Anchorage to Seward, and Home to Whitehorse - The ExploreNorth Blog

  5. Pingback: Cruising on the Norwegian Sun - a Review

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