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Inside Passage Cruise Port Guide

The majestic landscapes of Alaska are an unmissable bucket-list experience for any adventurous traveler, and on an Alaska cruise, you won’t just hit the highlights like Juneau. From the comfort of your incredible cruise ship, you’ll sail across 500 miles of Alaskan wilderness known as the Inside Passage. This coastal waterway is filled with glacial mountains, lush pine forests, and unforgettable wildlife sightings.

During the best Inside Passage cruise, the summertime sunshine offers plentiful photo opportunities. You might see orcas and humpback whales from your stateroom on your way to destinations like Ketchikan and Icy Strait Point. Marvel at the remote, untouched wilderness where you can breathe in the mountain air and truly think. Sky-high icebergs and glaciers await.

Cruises Through Inside Passage, Alaska

 

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Top Sights & Attractions for Cruises through the Inside Passage

Whale Watching

Entire families of orcas and humpback whales swim the waters along the Alexander Archipelago, and you may be lucky enough to spot them on your Inside Passage cruise. Whale sightings are most common in the summer months.

Glaciers

Snap a picture of a giant glacier up close in Alaska. If you’ve never seen a glacier in person, you’ll be amazed at their scale and enormity here. Alaska’s glaciers constantly shift and change, attracting thousands of environmental scientists and nature lovers to the region each year.

Juneau

After cruising the Inside Passage, you’ll continue on to Juneau, where you can visit the 13-mile-long Mendenhall Glacier or go hiking in the Tongass National Forest during your day in port. This remote capital is also famous for dog sledding and incredible glaciers.

Ketchikan

Did you know Ketchikan is the salmon capital of the world? Tasting the local varieties is a must once you’ve docked in Ketchikan. Don’t miss the Totem Heritage Center and the Southeast Alaska Discovery Set, where you’ll discover thousands of years of Alaskan history and culture.

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Top Things to Do in Inside Passage

Extend Your Cruise with a Cruisetour

Why not extend your vacation with a Cruisetour of Alaska’s interior? A Cruisetour gives you the chance to combine your seven-night sailing with a trip inland to remote Alaskan towns, including the breathtaking Denali National Park. 

Enjoy more time in nature, spot brown bears as they catch salmon swimming upstream, or visit Denali National Park and see the highest mountain peak in North America. Our Cruisetour itineraries take you to Anchorage, Talkeetna, and other towns to experience hiking, Alaskan heritage tours, wildlife, and much more.

Culture & History of Inside Passage Cruise Port

Alaska’s rich history begins with the Indigenous groups that have lived in the region for thousands of years, including the Iñupiat, Yupik, Aleut, Eyak, Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian. Russian explorers reached the area in the 19th century, and the Yukon Gold Rush attracted thousands of miners to the remote area. Alaska became known as “the Last Frontier,” a place where you could stake a claim on the land and get rich trying. By 1959, Alaska was declared a U.S. state. Since the 1960s, the debate over oil rigs in Alaska greatly impacted the region. In the past decades, conservation and preservation of Alaska’s natural landscape has become vital to the area. Today, Alaska’s incredible nature and beauty, not to mention cool and sunny summers, have made it a popular vacation destination.

Local Currency & Tipping Customs

You’ll be cruising during your time through Alaska’s Inside Passage. However, Alaska does use the U.S. dollar as its official currency. Alaska’s main sources of economic growth and revenue are fishing and tourism. Don’t forget to tip tour providers, bartenders, and restaurant servers during your Alaska cruise.

 

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24-hour In-Room Dining

Inside Passage, Alaska: You'll sail beyond the Inside Passage into the more protected Alaska Inside Passage in southeastern Alaska. This complex labyrinth of fjords, bays, and lush green islands is home to an abundance of wildlife, including orca, mountain goats, bald eagles, bears, puffins, sea otters and much more. During the summer months, the long hours of daylight allow for ample opportunities for nature photos on your Inside Passage Cruise. You'll never forget the sight of 40-ton whales hurling themselves into the air, almost completely escaping the water. If you're especially lucky, you could see them swimming together to create a bubble net, trapping and eating fish by the giant mouthful.