Randall Soy: Tongass National Forest is on our must-see list

This is the second post of a three-part series by Randall Soy, Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing, where he shares what he and his family are most looking forward to experiencing on their 2017 summer voyage to Alaska aboard Seven Seas Mariner.

When we arrive in Ketchikan, we are going to disconnect from the WiFi and leave our phones and iPads in our suite to set out for a hike that simply can’t be beat. This may be one place where Dad can compete with Pikachu and Pokémon Go will take a back seat to our time together.


We are planning on seeing majestic bald eagles glide gracefully overhead while they carefully scout their next meal. Spawning salmon returning home and if we are lucky, black bear sightings will also be highlights of our day. The sounds and power of nature all come together during an epic family adventure while hiking through the Tongass National Forest. At nearly 17 million acres, the Tongass is America’s largest national forest, stretching the entire length of Alaska’s Inside Passage. As I try to explain to my son, everything is bigger in Alaska. Although we’ll only experience a sliver of its size, the Tongass is three times the size of Massachusetts! Taking a guided hike with our experienced naturalist will enable us to not miss any of the sensory overloads. From waterfalls to wildlife, experiencing nature through the eyes of my daughter is humbling.


The best part is that these types of enriching experiences continue back on board, whether we are looking out for whales from our balcony, attending a lecture by Terry Breen, or sourcing the perfect Caramel Popcorn Sundae. My wife is already perusing the Canyon Ranch SpaClub® treatments and I know exactly what I’m going to order at Chartreuse with which wine pairing, while the kids are excited about the activities planned for them at Club Mariner.


Club Mariner Youth Program

Our kids will definitely have an unforgettable summer. Not only will they enjoy their time ashore, but on board they will make friends for life at the Club Mariner Youth Program. The games, crafts and programs are all specially s designed for children between the ages of 5 and 17, and is supervised by trained counselors.

Onboard Lecture Series

The voyage we are considering features onboard naturalist, Terry Breen. A noted author and cultural anthropologist, she will share her passion for the region and her in-depth knowledge of Alaska’s diverse wildlife through her lectures and intermittent commentary from the Bridge.. My son is convinced

that this will be like homework but I assured him that Ms. Breen makes it fun for all.

Canyon Ranch SpaClub®

At the end of our day, we are planning to relax and recharge at the Canyon Ranch SpaClub® to get ready for our next great adventure. My wife will probably take in a fitness class while I consider starting my next failed fitness routine but probably end up with a tasty latte.


Your Window to Alaska

One of the best not-so-hidden secrets about Seven Seas Mariner is that everywhere you turn; you have a window to look out from. Enjoy 180-degree sea views from the curved bar and plush seating of the Observation Lounge on Deck 12. On Deck 6 is the Horizon Lounge boasting floor-to-ceiling windows and a comfortable outdoor

deck for an aft view. And you always have the expansive top deck of the ship that offers the complete sea-to-sky view of beautiful Alaska. Or curled up under a blanket together on our balcony watching Southeast Alaska pass by; there are no bad seats in the house!

About the voyage

The 2017 Alaska season features a newly refurbished Seven Seas Mariner. Her 354 spacious suites will have new furnishings and textiles, each with a private balcony, the perfect spot for watching the whales breach. Her four gourmet restaurants include the new modern French bistro, Chartreuse and our largest specialty restaurant, Compass Rose. Indulge in generous, all-inclusive amenities such as FREE Roundtrip Air, FREE Unlimited Shore Excursions, FREE WiFi, FREE Unlimited Beverages and more. Come join us!

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Jean Marie Healy says:

    HI Randall, It’s Jean Marie Healy, a voice from your past. We’re taking the May 31st Seward to Vancouver on the Mariner. Which one are you guys on? It would be nice to catch up over coffee or a drink if we happen to be on the same sailing! Best, JM

  2. Randall Soy says:

    Hi Jean Marie,
    We are still sorting out the specific voyage as we need to navigate around school schedules. However I believe we are looking at early August. Late May is a great time for you and regardless would love to get a coffee or drink to re-connect. All my best, RS

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