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Shore Excursions Snorkeling, SCUBA, sightseeing - discuss ports and activities

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Old March 21st, 2001, 11:42 AM
Andrew Hicks
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Default Alaskan excursion

What are the best excursions to do in the following cities: Juneau, Sitka, Skagway, Ketchikan, and Anchorage? We are thinking about the cruise tour to Tracy Arm or the helicopter ride to the top of the glacier. We can't decide which one would be better. Also what can I expect from the following: Glacier Bay Cruising and College Fjord Cruising?

Any other information would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Andrew
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Old March 27th, 2001, 09:21 PM
eeinusa
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Default Re: Alaskan excursion

Looks like no one has responded -- you might want to check out the boards at cruisecritic.com -- Ports of Call -- Alaska. I've seen a lot there. Our cruise in June is going to be the first to Alaska so I am no expert, but looks like the Mendenhall Glacier helicopter ride/landing in Juneau, the White Pass & Yukon rail trip in Skagway and Misty Fjords flightseeing on a floatplane are highly recommended. Haven't seen much on Sitka. Opinions seem to vary as to whether to do the tours with the cruise ship or on your own.

As for Anchorage -- we're planning on spending three days there prior to our cruisetour. One highly recommended option seems to be the drive or train ride between Seward and Anchorage, with Kenai Fjords boating trip pretty high on the list as well. I'm still researching options for Anchorage. Our TA turned us onto see-alaska.com to try and get some ideas ... you might want to check it out as well.

Enjoy your trip.
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Old March 28th, 2001, 07:31 AM
Andrew Hicks
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Default Re: Alaskan excursion

So far we have somewhat decided on the following. In Juneau-Tracy Arm Fjord Glacier Cruise. This seems highly recommended but isn't offered by the cruise line. It is $92 pp and is 8 hour tour through the mountains and glaciers. Lunch and beverages are included. The pictures look really good. In Ketchikan-we are looking into the Misty Fjords Seaplane Adventure. We are comparing the curise excursion with another that we found through portpromotions.com. Through this company this excursion is $14 cheaper pp and could be better. I'm looking into it though. I did notice that there is another excursion called Misty Fjords Wilderness Cruise/Fly. This excursion doesn't sound very good because you are only in the plane for a short time. The rest of the time you are in a boat. In Skagway-we are looking into one of the excursions up to the summit. They are between $30 and $50 pp. We are also interested in the Chilkoot Trail Hike and Float Adventure.
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Old April 29th, 2001, 08:14 PM
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Default Re: Alaskan excursion

Here are some reccomendations, I actually sail in one week for back to back Alaska cruises on the Statendam May 6-20. These will be my 5th and 6th trips to Alaska.

Ketichican
The totem parks are OK, nothing special for me. I tried a flight to Misty Fjords a couple of trips ago but didn't get there because of fog. If you fly here try www.islandwings.com , they offer a cheaper, longer tour than the ships excursions.

Skagway
Everyone does the White Pass train ride, if you do sit on the left side going up. Personally I would do the 1/2 train,1/2 bus or even better the trip into the Yukon.
Also join up with one of the free Ranger led walks around town to learn about the colorful history.

Juneau
This is the place to get up into the air and do some flightseeing. Haven't done the helicopter trips yet but have done the glacier flight and the Taku Lodge trip. The best value for your $$ is the glacier flight which I plan to repeat on this trip. Also get out to the Mendenhall Glacier if possible, and the Mt Roberts tram is also very nice. Don't buy this through the ship in case of bad weather, price on the dock is exactly the same and you can decide them if visibilty warrants the trip.

Sita
Unless you plan on a wildlife cruise you are better off on your own here.(if you don't mind walking) The state park has a very nice nature trail with many totem poles along the walk. This is about 1 1/4 miles from the dock. Just up the road is the Raptor center, maybe only another 1/2 mile. Total walking tour of town would probably involve a 2-3/12 mile walk and only cost the price of admisson to the Raptor center. Instead of a $40+ ship tour pp it would probably cost you $10 plus some exercise.

Seward
If you have the time here the tour to Exiot Glacier is nice, along with teh Sealife Center. I plan on taking an all day cruise to Misty Fjords this trip.

You will love Alaska, scenery is fantastic, My overall glacier preference is College Fjord, Hubbard Glacier with Glacier Bay last but still spectacular.

Doug
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