I have just the camera for you. A Nikon D5500 with a 55 to 300mm lens plus a padded holster bag. It is a light weight setup that all fits into the holster which can be hung on your belt or over the shoulder. It comes with battery & charger, and shutter release. $590.
I use Affinity, Luminar and ON-1 and find they have a very good supply of tutorials. I am 79 and find it is more difficult to follow and absorb many tutorials, so I just watch them a 2nd and 3rd time. I also use YouTube extensively. The app I like the best is Luminar. For what I do, just process RAW photos, Luminar is fast straightforward and easy to use. Updates are free. I had an older Mac which could not be updated anymore, so to run the latest versions, I had to buy a new Mac. It is so fast compared to the old one. A joy to used. I hope this helps you.
I went on the Alaska cruise from Seattle to Anchorage. Took my Nikon camera and lenses. Mainly used the 18 to 140mm lens. Not much telephoto work. I took too much equipment to lug around. The glaciers are large so you don't need much telephoto. And the vistas are huge. I would recommend traveling light. A monopod would help to give a more stable platform, however I did not take one. I took a lot of pictures with my iPhone. Handier to take on some of the side trips when climbing in and around smaller boats and buses. I got really great pictures using my Sony Cyber-shot RX100 on the trip. It fits in my shirt pocket.
I use the Sony RX100 which takes excellent pictures in both .JPG and RAW. It does have a 1" sensor. I do miss the view finder, but there is a screen setting for daylight or bright screen which helps. Auto focus is fast. There are other RX100 models which have different features. I like the size as it is about the size of a pack of cigarettes and fits nicely in my shirt pocket. I use a wrist strap as it is a small camera and one could loose your grip on it if not careful. I also have a case for hanging on the belt which I bought at Best Buy. The features on this camera are good and are all I need for a 2nd camera which is small and light.
I recommend a tilt head. It is much easier to control than a ball head. With a monopod you only need up and down adjustments. For side to side just turn the monopod.
I bought a Aodelan unit for my D500 from Amazon. It has a receiver and a transmitter. The receiver can be used alone by plugging it into the camera. Half press will focus and full press releases the shutter. Make sure any unit you get will work on your camera. The transmitter will work a good distance from the camera and also will focus with a half press.
A tripod will always be better or a monopod. Birds are quick and so I shoot in manual mode at 1/2000 or higher if hand held and set the aperture at f6 or higher. I've found that the depth of field is important to getting a good picture. A slight movement of the camera or bird can change everything. I also use back button focus and continuous mode. Try backing off the 500mm a little. Good luck.
I have a Mac and use Luminar which I find easy to use after watching some tutorials. It can be found at the App Store for 69.99. It will work as a stand alone or in Photos as a plugin. It processes raw and jpg. I use mine as a plugin then all the photos remain in Photos library.
Also Affinity which is more like Photoshop is $50 and available from the App Store.
ON-1 is a nice app and is more involved. It does catalog in a way and which might be more like Lightroom but a different cataloging system . I've never used Lightroom so don't know. I've watched a number of their tutorial videos and sometimes use it. Since my many years of photos are in Photos I am sticking with it and Luminar as that all works well for me.
I have a D5500 body for sale. Battery, charger & 32 Gb card. I don't use it anymore since I got the D500.
I shot pictures off the LED tv with my iPhone and they turned out great.
I use a Nikon D500 which has both a flip out screen and touch screen. The view finder is my preference but if I want to shoot from high or low I use the flip out. The touch screen is handy if I am looking at menus. I don't use it much.
Be sure to see the Milwaukee Arts Museum on the waterfront. You can get some great pictures there.
Holy Hill about 30 miles north is scenic with high views of the area.
I have one and it should work ok. I use mine on a D500.
A friend had one for sale. Give Peter a call 717-418-7818.
I went to Lumina (works on Windows and Macs). After watching a few tutorials I was using it and like it. It is fairly easy compared to some.