We are cruising to Alaska in July. In addition to the standard walking tours, we would like to do an adventure or 2. We were considering a raft float trip in Haines (Bald Eagle preserve). We have a 7 and a 3 1/2 year old. Of course, I am wondering whether anyone has done such a trip with a young child?
Any opinions? If its relevant, our daughter is pretty adventurous and wants to do whatever her older bro does.
Although I have not taken kids on this adventure, I have taken the tour. It is non-physical and each member wears a life vest. There is no reason a child could not take this tour unless the ship has restrictions. It is a very leisurely float down the Chilcot river and the Eagle preserve with a guide paddling in each rubber raft. If anything, your children may get bored. It is pretty hard to spot Eagles in the trees and in their nests. You have to be very quiet also. The airboat tours scare away the wildlife due to the noise, so be aware of this hidden objection. Have a great time. Don't miss the totem pole carver who may be in the old Hall up the hill @ Haines. Bring an umbrella style stroller for the little one.
I'm the family travel editor here. I'll be publishing an article on what to do with kids in Alaskan ports on this site in about a week's time. Although I haven't been to Haines and thus am not including it in the article, you'll find suggestions for other Alaskan ports.
Luisa Frey Gaynor
We sailed on the Volendam in May to Alaska, with my seven year old son. My husband and I did the float trip about ten years ago and it was fantastic. This time, we did the two mile hike on the Chilkoot Trail which ended with a guided raft trip. Holland America (or the excursion company - I'm not sure which) does require the child to be at least seven years of age to take the raft trip. It was explained to us by the guide that the child must be able to swim and self-rescue themselves in the event the raft tips over. We were all given life jackets, and the river had mild currents so it was fine; but find out the age requirements ahead of time.