Alaskan Cruise Vacations
Heading off on an Alaska cruise really is an adventure you will never forget. It’s hard to express exactly how amazing the scenery is, how expansive, how breathtaking, how pristine. It’s a place you really have to see to appreciate.
This site will help you plan your Alaska vacation, from choosing the best cruise line and route to picking the most memorable shore excursions and pre or post cruise inland tours.
We will also keep you up to date on all the latest news and developments relating to Alaskan cruises, from new itineraries to new ships, new places to see on land, and even new ways to save money on your shore excursions.
The cruise season begins in Alaska in late April and ends in late September. Ships can book up some time in advance, so it always makes sense to start your planning early – some repeat cruisers start making their plans a year or more before their proposed sail date.
You will see quite a lot from the deck of your ship, as much if not more than on any other cruise you might have been on. In fact, aside from a day or two at sea, the scenery along both sides of the ship can be absolutely breathtaking throughout most of your journey. So if you are considering a balcony room, I highly recommend getting one.
There are a number of different locations into which the cruise ships venture to get up close and personal with massive tidewater glaciers. This glacier viewing really is the highlight of the cruise, and you often get far closer to the “calving” glaciers than you might imagine is possible.
Watching the massive chunks of ice split off or “calve” from the sides of these massive tidewater glaciers is a truly awe-inspiring experience that moves even the most jaded of observers. To get in the most glacier viewing, consider taking a one-way north or south bound cruise between Anchorage and Seattle or Vancouver.
These one way cruises often stop in both College Fjord and either Glacier Bay, Sawyer Glacier, or Tracy Arm Fjord. All of these locations are spectacular and worth visiting on separate cruises. But if you had to pick just one, I would go with Glacier Bay, due to it’s sheer size and beauty.
You can stop in a number of different ports, each with its own unique charms and selection of shore excursions. It’s a good idea to research the ports before you even select an itinerary, as you might find one excursion that particularly excites you, and it might be offered in just one of the ports.
In addition to the one way cruise itineraries I mentioned, round-trip cruises are also available, the majority of these sailing out of the Port of Seattle. If you are coming from the united States, there are a number of advantages to these cruises that are worth mentioning.
First, you will avoid having to go through airport customs by flying into Seattle. And second, your flight likely will be a good deal cheaper than either flying round trip into Vancouver or flying on a split ticket with one leg in or out of Anchorage.
But there is one more advantage to these round trip voyages, and that applies equally to Americans and people coming from Canada or abroad, and that is that these cruises tend to stay in calmer waters, not venturing into the Gulf of Alaska like the one-way cruises.
The down side to these round trip cruises (also knows as Inside Passage itineraries) is that they don’t go to College Fjord, so you generally only get half as much glacier viewing time.
But whatever cruise you select, you are going to see some of the most jaw-dropping scenery you have ever experienced. It’s hard not to have a wonderful time on an Alaskan cruise. If you’re like me, you’ll want to go back again and again.