The last cruise ships of Juneau’s tourist season sailed away Wednesday.
Cruise ships made more than 550 visits to Juneau this year.
Though final numbers aren’t in, Juneau Convention and Visitors Bureau CEO Nancy Woizeschke says just under a million passengers visited the capital city this summer.
“At the beginning of the season we were hoping to break the million passenger mark for the large cruise ships and that was a little optimistic. And then with the cancelling of multiple Celebrity Millennium stops, I think we won’t be passing that particular mark this year,” Woizeschke says.
In August, multiple mechanical problems sidelined the Millennium in both Seward and Ketchikan, forcing cancellation of several voyages.
Several new ships called on Juneau this summer, including the 1,041-foot Celebrity Solstice, which Woizeschke says is the largest cruise ship to sail Alaska waters.
She says based on hotel occupancy rates, the number of independent travelers to Juneau this summer may be high.
“We think that’s a good indicator of lots of independent travelers coming and spending multiple nights here,” she says. “And then we’ve had a lot of smaller cruise ships, for instance the Un-Cruise Adventures came to port for the first time this year. Lot of those folks, because they depart and come back here, have the opportunity to spend a couple of days in Juneau on either side of their trip.”
Holland America’s Oosterdam and Westerdam were the last two ships in port Wednesday. The Westerdam was not expected, but bad weather earlier this week forced it to revise its schedule.
The first cruise ship of 2014 will sail into Juneau on May 1st.
- The state is granting nearly $300,000 to improve water quality in some of Alaska's most damaged watersheds, including Juneau's orange-tinted Duck Creek.
- More than a third of all the penalties imposed since 1976 were logged last year.
- "You know, we're not talking about some smoky, old wood stove here. We’re talking about high-tech equipment," said Daniel Parrent, a program manager at the U.S. Forest Service.
- "Did you think that ganging together seven different taxes would make it more likely or less likely that any would pass?” asked Eagle River Republican Rep. Dan Saddler.