Alaska can be considered a bucket list for many travelers, especially those who do not live on the west coast. The mix of passengers is everything from toddlers to the elderly. It is no longer considered a trip for just the elderly. Cruise ships and excursions have something for everyone. Alaska is intriguing, culturally diverse, and has so much Native Alaskan history. From the Gold Rush-era to the Russian influence, you will be amazed.
Many cruise lines offer cruises to Alaska. Norwegian, Princess, Disney, and Celebrity to name a few. Not every cruise line is a right fit for every cruiser. There are large ships, small ships, expedition ships. Each has its own personality. We would be more than happy to share insight on this.
What would one expect on a cruise to Alaska? Beautiful scenery unlike any other. From glaciers and fjords to mountains and forests. History. So much history in our 49 th state. So many influences from Russia, Norway, Asia and more.
You can cruise to Alaska from many ports on the west coast. Many ships leave and return to Seattle. Many leave from Vancouver and end in Anchorage or reverse. Some even start in Los Angeles or San Francisco and travel north or south.
The Alaska cruise season is from the end of April to October. July and August are peak season when the weather is the warmest. Spring time and late fall offers the better pricing however, weather might not be your friend. Snow could be on the ground, which makes for pretty pictures, but not so much fun for hiking. Weather could play a factor of your shore excursion being cancelled especially if it is a boat or helicopter tour. September offers the chance for cruisers to see the Northern Lights, and some great end-of-the season shopping.
Some ports you may visit:
Ketchikan – A great port to explore, hike through the forest, canoe around a lake and learn about the Native American past in the area. You can zipline in the rainforest.
Skagway – You can pan for gold here, while learning about the history of the gold rush era. How about a white water rafting trip for a more adventurous excursion? Take a train ride along the White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad.
Sitka – A cultural melting pot for Alaska Natives and Russian decedents. Many remnants of heritage are here such as St. Michaels Cathedral and the Russian Bishop House.
Juneau – Alaska’s capital. You can kayak or canoe close to Mendanhall Glacier. Visit a viewing area where brown bears are protected to live in their natural habitat. Or see various sea animals such as seals and sea lions. Even go whale watching for the impressive Humpback Whales.