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Cruise Diva Goes Ashore in ALASKA
Sights to see & things to do

Cruise Alaska

Alaska
Ports of Call:

Anchorage

Denali

Glacier Bay

Haines

Hubbard Glacier

Juneau

Ketchikan

Misty Fjords

Petersburg

Seattle

Seward

Sitka

Skagway

Tracy Arm/
Sawyer Glacier

Valdez

Vancouver

Victoria, BC


What to expect? What clothing and gear should you pack? Find out...
Cool Cruising
Get ready to go north to Alaska and other cold climates.


Private Flightseeing tours are "your first-class ticket to see one of the world's most majestic and untamed landscapes." 
Southeast Aviation


 

Today’s Alaska cruises offer a little something for every lifestyle, from small excursion vessels offering casual informality and soft adventure to megaships with a dazzling array of activities and options.

Unlike year-round cruise destinations, Alaska cruising is seasonal. Generally beginning in May, cruise ships ply the Inside Passage and Gulf of Alaska until September. June, July, and August are the warmest months with temperatures averaging from 50 to 80 during the day and cooler at night. Fares are lower in May and September, the “shoulder” months. Late May is a particularly good choice because snow still covers mountain tops and yet the weather is typically mild. 

Alaska cruises take essentially two “routes.” There are Inside Passage itineraries, round-trip from Vancouver or Seattle with ports of call possibly including Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan, Skagway, Haines, Glacier Bay (or another glacier—possibly Sawyer), and a day of cruising a scenic waterway such as Misty Fjords. 

The second major cruise itinerary is the Gulf of Alaska cruise which is a south to north or north to south itinerary from Anchorage to Vancouver or vice-versa. Ports of call might include Valdez, Seward, cruising College Fjord and Hubbard Glacier, and the Inside Passage ports of Ketchikan, Juneau, Sitka, and Skagway. In addition, many cruisers add a pre- or post-cruise side trip to Denali National Park to their Alaska Gulf of Alaska itinerary.

After selecting an itinerary option, it’s important to pick the right ship to ensure your Alaska vacation meets your expectations. Ships range from small excursion/adventure vessels to megaships with every resort convenience at hand. The former are more casual and destination intensive, while the latter conform to a traditional cruising standard. Unlike the not-so-distant past, the majority of Alaska-bound cruise passengers are not senior citizens. Newer and larger ships in the region have been a boon for families whose children find as much to enjoy onboard as their parents and grandparents.

Before going to Alaska, decide what you want to see and do. Determine what’s important to you and what’s not—after all, this may be your opportunity of a lifetime to see this great state. Even with discounts making Alaska cruises more affordable, expensive shore excursions can make your total vacation cost rise faster than a helicopter lifting off for Mendenhall Glacier. Establish your priorities and avoid disappointment by booking popular excursions immediately upon boarding your ship. If you have your heart set on a very pricey float plane excursion, remember you can even out costs by taking a walking tour in the next port.

You needn’t pack a winter wardrobe suitable for northern Minnesota when cruising in Alaska; after all, the locals call this “summer.” Instead, think layers and stick with cottons and other natural fabrics. Plan to buy souvenir sweatshirts and make them a part of your warmth plan. Instead of a heavy parka, take a tightly-woven, hooded windbreaker, a cap that covers the ears, and gloves. You’ll appreciate warm socks and waterproof shoes. Don't forget to pack your binoculars and take an umbrella—if you have it, you may not need it.

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