We will be in Juneau the 3rd week in June with 2 older kids (11 and 16). Our travel agent is offering us a free all day boat excursion to Auke Bay. We were considering a walk/flight to Mendenhall glacier. Another possibility is bear watching (Pack Creek?). This is our first trip..so many choices..so little time!!!!
Hi Cape Cod. I'll be in Alaska also the 3rd week in June. I'm sorry that I can't help you out as this is our first trip to Alaska too. Just wanted to say hi, as I'm guessing you are from the Cape and I grew up in Barnstable Village. Hope you like cruising as much as I do.
Auke bay will be whale watching. Humpbacks 100% of the trips (I go on multiday research trips to the South Channel and beyond out of Gloucester) . Determine what your priority is - a glacier helicopter landing with Coastal $180pp. (Mendenhall glaicer is NO better/worse than the other glaciers in the Juneau ice field - I would not limit my choices to that). Pack Creek will run $475pp, peak is July and August. It will also be your only opportunity for browns feeding on salmon. DO NOT be tempted by a cheaper Pack Creek touring option. You are NOT likely to see them from the water- you need the permits to get to the platform.
Thanks to both Phyllbo and Karen (by the way, Phyllbo, Cape Cod is a favorite vacation place for us!)..Karen, I was concerned that June was outside of prime bear-viewing time, although I'd LOVE to see bears. Where else would you suggest for glacier viewing? We will be stopping in Skagway, Sitka, Juneau, and Ketchikan....any other suggestions on bear-viewing sites? Thanks!
Are you going interior with a one way cruise. Denali Park is your best bargain around for brown bears- but these are not salmon eating and half the size of the coastal browns. You are too early anywhere else on the inside passage besides perhaps Pack Creek. Inquire directly from the vender their recommendation. Your only other glacier helicopter landing will be out of Skagway. Consider direct booking with www.temscoair.com
Hi- the vendor says that bears are a "pretty good chance" at Pack Creek at that time, depending on whether or not they've moved up into the woods or not. What do you think the best Juneau excursions are? Alaska Unusual says that they can combine the Auke Bay trip with a trip to Mendenhall Glacier. Is this a worthwhile combination? The ship also offers a morning excursion on a catamaran when it is cruising Tracy Arm. Any thoughts?
The Tracy Arm excursions gets raves- you just do not get near as close on your cruise ship. Go with what your interests are. As mentioned- there are plenty of GREAT Juneau tours- way more than for one trip. Choose what is right for your group.