In Skagway, we took an all day tour (NCL shore excrusion) on a bus driving over the pass into Karcross (sp???) Canada. Stopped several times for pics & other things, had lunch in Karcross - rather casual but good. Didn't see any wildlife but sometimes they do. GREAT driver. All six in my group thought this was GREAT - age-70's 30's, 50's & 12 year old.
Booked parents on same tour in '03 & thought ok, but a bit long. Mother didn't care for the lunch place-I don't think they had same guide/driver. Only wildlife they saw was a wild turkey. (Shore excursion with Princess but it was same tour company I had gone on in '01)
Definitely book a salmon bake - wonderful. We did the short excursion for that in Juneau (again, NCL shore excursion)
Also, In Juneau, I did not take tour including the tram & the rest of my group did - they felt it was a waste. I kept unning into them & I was doing Juneau on my own.
Wanted to take helicopter to the glacier but didn't have $$$$ either time.
I also went horseback riding (Princess shore excursion) in Skagway & LOVED it.
Hope this helps. Feel free to email me with more ???
The real topic here is should Jean need hand warmers too because of her disease. I was there in August and it was never cold except on the ship the day we cruised glacier bay, and by on the ship I mean outside on the deck viewing. In Scagway it was pretty cool though so I would think if your hand and feet warmers won't cause your back to slip a disk by carrying your luggage,,better safe then sorry.
Since the weather really changes, someone with more experience should address this question for the month of May.
Ive never been to Alaska,but going the end of May..that being said,Im VERY cold natured,and most ppl here think I might be a little silly,but...my neighbor,who,like me is cold natured,went in June,and she told me she almost froze and that she was SO glad that she took a down jacket.So,I bought a lightweight down that folds down to nothing to have.If I dont need it fine...but I would rather have it than NEED it and not have it.If Ive had major back surgery,and if I get cold and shiver,I become very uncomfortable around my scar area.So much so that it really pulls and hurts.I went to Academy and bought some of those instant hand warmers that you can stick inside your jacket/gloves/shoes..wherever you need one,and they last up to 12 hours.They are very inexpensive and small enough to put in a back pack or purse.If your disease makes you uncomfortable when it gets cold,I would take whatever you need.From what I understand,Alaska is so unpredictable,so I for one will be prepared.