Alaska Cruises and Information
Your Travel Guide for Alaska CruisesAlaska's spectacular natural scenery and its staggering size help make it one of the most attractive and awe-inspiring places on Earth. From the state's majestic glaciers and mountain peaks to its charming coastal towns and abundant wildlife, there's a lot to see and do – and an Alaska cruise is the most convenient and affordable way to experience it all. Set sail for Alaska and you'll enjoy amazing amenities and plenty of creature comforts while you're at sea and an array of one-of-a-kind adventures when you come ashore. Highlights include Alaska's Inside Passage, one of the planet's most picturesque waterways; Denali (née Mt. McKinley), the tallest summit in North America; and whale watching via Kenai Fjords National Park.
- Carnival Cruise Lines
- Royal Caribbean International
- Norwegian Cruise Line
- Celebrity Cruises
- Disney Cruise Line
- Holland America Line
- Princess Cruises
Many of the world's top luxury lines visit Alaska, too:
When is the Best Time to Cruise to Alaska?Alaska's sailing season is shorter than that of most other major destinations. Broadly speaking, you'll find Alaska cruises available between late April/early May and mid-September, with interest peaking during the summer months (June, July, and August), when the weather is typically warmest. But there are pros and cons to each of the months that make up Alaska's cruise season, and there are several important factors to consider.
PricingJune and July are the busiest months for Alaska cruising, and voyages are priced accordingly. If you're flexible, you'll want to look to the season's "shoulder months" (e.g. May, September) for the very best deals, when you can often save hundreds of dollars per person. Regardless of when you want to set sail, however, you'll want to book your Alaska cruise as early as possible: Alaska's popularity, combined with its relatively short sailing season, means that most Alaska cruises will sell out months and months in advance of departure.
Availability (Ships, Staterooms, Etc.)Cruisers will find the greatest number of ships and sailings available during the summer, but competition for these voyages can be fierce (with school out, many families will be traveling together); as with pricing, it pays to book early. You'll also want to remember that cabins with a view are always in high demand – Alaska's breathtaking landscapes are its major draw, after all – so you'll need to plan ahead if you're interested in an oceanview stateroom or a balcony stateroom.
Weather & Other Seasonal FactorsThe weather in Alaska can change rapidly – hot to cold, damp to dry, and calm to breezy – so it's important to pack accordingly; clothing you can layer, including waterproof gear, is essential. That said, you'll find the most beautiful weather (and the most daylight) on offer between May and July, with the likelihood of rain increasing as you move into August and September. The end of the season is generally the best time for viewing wildlife: salmon runs, which peak in middle/late August, bring out the bears, and a wide variety of whale breeds begin to migrate along the coast. Cruisers sailing to Alaska in September are also more likely to catch a glimpse of the famous Northern Lights.
Departure Ports for Alaska CruisesThe vast majority of Alaska cruises depart from ports of call located along the western coastlines of the U.S. and Canada; most likely, you'll set sail from either Seattle, Washington or Vancouver, British Columbia. Depending on the itinerary you select, your Alaska cruise will travel either northbound or southbound; you'll enjoy an amazing experience regardless of which direction you choose, but many experienced cruisers prefer the northbound option because the scenery grows increasingly dramatic as you make your way north.
Alaska Cruises Departing from SeattleCruises to Alaska from Seattle are typically roundtrip sailings, a major convenience for travelers who'll need to book flights to and from the city. On average, your Alaska cruise from Seattle will last seven nights, and your itinerary will likely include visits to popular ports of call like Juneau, Ketchikan, and Skagway.
Alaska Cruises Departing from VancouverCruises to Alaska from Vancouver will visit many of the same ports of call as a cruise that departs from Seattle, but these are overwhelmingly one-way sailings, traveling northbound, that conclude in either Seward or Whittier, so you'll need to make arrangements once it's time to head home. Set sail from Vancouver, however, and you'll spend more time cruising through, and alongside, some of Alaska's most extraordinary natural environments (e.g. the Inside Passage and Glacier Bay).
Alaska's Most Popular Cruise Ports
JuneauAlaska's capital and the state's second-largest city. Inaccessible by road, it's the gateway to several of Alaska's most significant attractions including the Alaska State Museum and nearby Mendenhall Glacier, home to exciting excursion options including dog-sledding, hiking, and aerial sightseeing by helicopter. And despite its relative isolation, Juneau is a very cosmopolitan city: visitors who may not be interested in a rugged adventure along the nearby icefields and trails will find a thriving arts, culinary, and shopping scene to explore downtown.
KetchikanSituated at the southernmost entrance to the Inside Passage, picturesque Ketchikan is rich in native history and culture, and you'll see evidence of that throughout town: Ketchikan is home to Alaska's largest collection of colorful totem poles, and its Totem Heritage Center, just minutes from the pier, remains a must-see attraction. Ketchikan is also "the Salmon Capital of the World," so named for its abundance of fish and major canneries, and sport fishing for salmon and other species is a popular pastime (visitors can rent their own skiffs or book a charter with an experienced guide).
SkagwayAlaska's rough-and-tumble gold-rush history comes to life in this small but charming southeastern town. Sleepy during the winter months – barely 1,000 people make their home here year-round – Skagway comes alive during cruise season, when the population doubles to accommodate the influx of passengers. Attractions include the Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Park (featuring many lovingly restored and historic buildings) and an unforgettable journey along the White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad, "the Railway Built of Gold."
The Inside PassageNot a port, exactly, but a passageway – and one of the most world's prettiest. This network of waterways, which extends from Puget Sound in Washington State up to and alongside Alaska's Panhandle, is lined with gorgeous coves and verdant fjords and dotted with hundreds and hundreds of islands and islets. En route, you're virtually guaranteed to see all sorts of incredible wildlife from any number of vantage points aboard your cruise ship (e.g. bald eagles, breaching whales, dolphins, and more). Additional highlights along the way may include Tracy Arm Fjord and Tongass National Forest, America's largest.
Popular Alaska Shore ExcursionsShore excursions are an essential part of any Alaska cruise, but you'll want to secure your space well in advance of departure, as the best and most popular excursions always fill up quickly. From the relaxing (e.g. a salmon bake) to the rugged (e.g. a glacier trek), you'll find something for passengers of all ages and ability levels; few, if any, cruise destinations offer passengers a greater number of options.
Four Glaciers by Helicopter + Dog Sled Adventure (Juneau)Take to the skies for an exhilarating aerial adventure above Juneau's enormous Icefield. You'll soar over four of the region's most prominent glaciers before touching down on Norris Glacier, where you'll visit an authentic mushing camp and take part in an Iditarod-style ride aboard a dog sled powered by hearty Alaskan huskies.
Saxman Native Village (Ketchikan)No visit to Alaska would be complete without at least a little appreciation for the state's native history and culture, and the Saxman Native Village is both a fun and authentic place in which to find it. Saxman's colorful totem-pole park, and the shed/studio where the poles are carved by hand, are among the village's many highlights.
White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad (Skagway)This scenic railway traverses the same route taken by prospectors during the frenzy of Alaska's first Gold Rush. Traveling in comfort, you'll ascend nearly 3,000 feet to the summit of the White Pass, and the sights you'll see along the way – steep and narrow gorges, intricate trestle bridges, cascading waterfalls, and more – are truly amazing.
Alaska Cruisetours: The Complete ExperienceFor most people, a visit to Alaska will be the vacation of a lifetime. So why not make the absolute most of it by booking a cruisetour? A cruisetour offers travelers the best of both worlds: an unforgettable Alaska cruise combined with a multi-night journey inland that you can enjoy either before or after you've cruised. It's the most comprehensive Alaska experience imaginable, allowing you to access key destinations – Anchorage, Denali National Park, and other locations – that simply can't be reached by cruise ship alone. Best of all? The land component of your cruisetour fare includes deluxe motorcoach and/or deluxe rail transportation, overnight stays in some of Alaska's finest hotels and lodges, select meals/excursions, and more.
Several of your favorite cruise lines offer Alaska cruisetours including Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, Holland America Line, Celebrity Cruises, and Princess Cruises. They're almost infinitely customizable, but cruisetours may only be booked by phone; contact our cruisetour experts today for complete details.
Alaska's Most Popular Cruisetour Destinations
AnchorageAlaska's biggest city, home to nearly half of the state's population, and a bewitching mixture of the modern and the traditional. Several of Alaska's most significant cultural attractions are located in Anchorage including the Alaska Native Heritage Center and the Anchorage Museum (the largest museum in the state). Culture/food buffs will find a bevy of vibrant offerings available in the city's bustling center, and adventure/nature lovers can use Anchorage as the jumping-off point to nearby Chugach and its slew of exciting outdoor options.
Denali National Park & PreserveA staple on most cruisetours, Denali is America's third-largest national park and Alaska's most-visited attraction. Encompassing nearly six million spectacular acres of protected wilderness, the park is chock-full of many of Alaska's most iconic creatures including black bears and grizzly bears, caribou, moose, and Dall's sheep. The park's centerpiece, however, is Denali (formerly known as Mt. McKinley); more than 20,000 feet tall, it's the highest mountain peak in North America.
Fairbanks"The Golden Heart of Alaska" and the interior's largest city. Located north of Denali and south of the Arctic Circle, Fairbanks has a lot to offer its visitors including near-constant sunlight during the spring and summer (hence its other nickname, "the Land of the Midnight Sun"). The Chena River, which runs through the center of town, is a hub for all kinds of activities and events; its recreation area (state park) is a great place for hiking, fishing, sledding, and other activities. Depending on when you visit, Fairbanks remains Alaska's best bet for travelers in search of the Northern Lights; additional highlights include Pioneer Park and downtown's Golden Heart Plaza.
Amazon.com Gift Card:
Up To $750 To Prepare For Your Vacation *Amazon.com Gift Card: Up To $750 To Prepare For Your Vacation *Get the fun started before you’ve even boarded your cruise! Book a new and qualifying cruise and receive a Amazon Gift Card valued up to $750. Spend it on luggage, flip-flops, sunscreen, bathing suits, or any other Amazon.com merchandise that would make your upcoming vacation that much more special. Your gift card code will be emailed to you approximately 30 days before departure date. Amount of bonus varies & is based on your booking price (found in your invoice as "Total") MINUS taxes, fees, port expenses, and port charges*
If you book a cruise that departs soon (within 36 days), your gift card code will be sent to you after you return home. Use your gift card to prepare for your adventure or to enhance your next vacation experience!
Total Price (minus port charges & taxes)Gift Card Value$0 - $1,250$25$1,251 - $2,250$50$2,251 - $3,000$75$3,001 - $3,500$100$3,501 - $4,000$125$4,001 - $4,500$150$4,501 - $5,000$200$5,001 - $7,500$300$7,501 - $10,000$400$10,000+$750
Hurry - Offer Ends Soon!
Up To $1,000 After You've Cruised †- Book Online or Call!Cash Back: Up To $1,000 After You've Cruised † - Book Online or Call!It's the deal that puts more cash in your pocket: receive up to $1,000 Cash Back! Cash Back is our richest offer that allows you to recoup up to $1,000 in onboard expenses; take a relaxing spa treatment, sip on a cocktail or two, or treat your taste buds to specialty dining. Amount varies & is based on total price (found in your invoice as "Total") MINUS taxes, fees, port expenses, and port charges. Cash back requires an onboard folio to be sent no later than 60 days after sailing to process refund of onboard expenses and will not exceed 10% of cruise fare. †
Total Price (minus taxes, fees, port expenses, & port charges)Cash Back$0 - $750$25$751 - $1,500$50$1,501 - $2,250$75$2,251 - $3,000$100$3,001 - $3,500$125$3,501 - $4,000$150$4,001 - $4,500$200$4,501 - $5,000$300$5,001 - $7,500$400$7,501 - $10,000$600$10,000+$1,000
Book Online or Call!
Up To $750 To Spend Onboard †- Book Online or Call!Onboard Credit: Up To $750 To Spend Onboard † - Book Online or Call!Spend it in your ship's spa, shops, and specialty restaurants or apply it towards shore excursions! Simply book a qualifying voyage, then prior to departure, complete and submit the redemption form found on your invoice, and we'll credit up to $750 to your onboard account, which you can use while you're sailing. Please see our grid below for bonus amounts. Restrictions apply, see terms below for details. Amount of bonus varies & is based on your booking price (found in your invoice as "Total") MINUS taxes, fees, port expenses, and port charges †
Total Price (minus taxes, fees, port expenses, & port charges)Onboard Spending$0 - $1,250$25$1,251 - $2,250$50$2,251 - $3,000$75$3,001 - $3,500$100$3,501 - $4,000$125$4,001 - $4,500$150$4,501 - $5,000$200$5,001 - $7,500$300$7,501 - $10,000$400$10,000+$750
Book Online or Call!
Book Now, Pay Later:
We'll Waive Your Deposit- Book Online or Call!Book Now, Pay Later: We'll Waive Your Deposit - Book Online or Call!Put your dream vacation on the calendar now, and pay for it later! When you book select 3+ night sailings, we'll waive the booking deposit for the first 5 staterooms on your reservation.
BOOK NOW - OFFER ENDS FRIDAY!Additional Terms & Conditions
Advanced Deposit offer is valid for new individual cruise reservations for sailings departing by 12/31/20. Offer is limited to sailings of 3 nights or longer booked at least 110 days prior to departure (or 140 days for Disney, 7-night or longer Norwegian sailings, and 15 night or longer MSC sailings); maximum $500 value and not valid on bookings requiring non-refundable deposits. Deposit must be paid 10 days prior to final payment due date; if changes are made benefit will become void and the cruise lines full deposit is required; changes resulting in a new cruise line booking are considered a cancellation, subject to cruise line’s cancellation policy, our $24.99 processing fee, and $100 cancel fee. Credit card used at time of booking will automatically be charged when the deposit remainder is due. Offer limited to 5 deposited cabins max. for 1 sailing. Offer is not applicable for redemption bookings. Additional restrictions apply.
Our Celebrity Exclusive:
Free Pre-Paid Gratuities for 2Our Celebrity Exclusive: Free Pre-Paid Gratuities for 2Don’t hesitate — this deal will be gone before you can say “when do we leave?”!
Book a balcony (hello, room with a view!) on select 2019 Celebrity sailings and we’ll prepay your gratuities so you don’t have to. What are you waiting for?
HURRY — ENDS SOON!
Search Celebrity cruisesAdditional Terms & Conditions
Offer is valid only for new individual bookings made between 4/16/19 and 4/30/19 in a balcony stateroom category on select Alaska & Caribbean sailings departing between 6/1/19 and 8/31/19. The first 2 guests in a qualifying booking will receive pre-paid gratuities for 2. Pre-paid gratuities only cover gratuities for the complimentary restaurant staff and stateroom stewards. Guests are responsible for any other onboard gratuities applicable to all other shipboard purchases. Gratuities are non-refundable, non-transferable and any changes to reservation may result in forfeiting this promotion. Additional restrictions may apply.
Our Princess Exclusive:
Up to $50 to Spend on BoardOur Princess Exclusive: Up to $50 to Spend on BoardThere's never been a better time to cruise the Last Frontier. For a limited time only, book a qualifying Princess voyage, and you can earn up to $50 to spend on board per stateroom. Use it towards shipboard purchases like drinks, specialty dinners, spa treatments, and more, or see the sights with shore excursions. The choices are endless...why wait?
BOOK NOW – ENDS 4/30
Search Princess Alaska cruisesAdditional Terms & Conditions
Onboard credit is valid only for new individual bookings made by between 4/22/19 and midnight EST 4/30/19 for all stateroom categories on select 2019 Princess Cruise sailings; not all ships or sailing dates may qualify for this offer. Certain restrictions apply. Offer is valid only for select fares and is subject to availability, capacity-controlled, limited by the cruise line, and may be changed or withdrawn at any time without notice. Call for details.
Our Princess Exclusive:
Upgrade Your Alaska Experience with a CruiseTourOur Princess Exclusive: Upgrade Your Alaska Experience with a CruiseTourDiscover the beauty of Alaska with next-level excursions and complimentary cruisetour upgrades! You'll have the unparalleled opportunity to explore more by both land and sea – offering an authentic taste of Alaska like never before. Witness awe-inspiring glaciers, incredible Music of Denali Dinner Theater, and take advantage of an exclusive $50 bonus spend on board. These premier, multi-night cruisetours give you the unique opportunity to experience Alaska and make memories that will last a lifetime.
Search Princess Alaska CruisesAdditional Terms & Conditions
Cruisetour offers and upgrades valid only on new individual and qualifying Princess Alaska Cruise bookings made between 9/20/18 and 8/29/19. Offers may vary. Call for details.
MORE FEATURED ALASKA CRUISES
Alaska's many wonders are closer than you think. Discover what savvy travelers already know - cruising America's biggest state is now more convenient, more affordable, and more exhilarating than ever. Today's cruise ships are designed to enhance this extraordinary scenery – so the journey to each port of call is half the fun. Thousands of balcony staterooms afford cruisers panoramic access to Alaska's great outdoors. Spot bald eagles soaring by, killer whales breaching, and grizzlies grazing along the shore. Ease into the warmth of an outdoor whirlpool and watch glacier floes tumble into the sea. See an unforgettable sunset and savor a gourmet dinner in the comfort of a luxurious shipboard restaurant. And, just before bed, gaze up at a canopy of stars from a seat on your stateroom's private balcony.
NORTH OR SOUTHBOUND GULF OF ALASKA CRUISES
Alaskan Northbound Cruises, also known as "Northbound Glacier Cruises," and Alaskan Southbound Cruises, also known as "Southbound Glacier Cruises," usually sail for 7 nights. These one-way cruises travel from Vancouver and Seward (near Anchorage). Journeying further beyond the Inside Passage than roundtrip sailings, these cruises allow you to see more of Alaska's coastline. Depending on the ship and itinerary, you'll visit 3 or 4 of the following ports of call: Juneau, Glacier Bay, Ketchikan, Hubbard Glacier, Skagway/Haines, and Sitka, as well as a trip through the Inside Passage.
ROUNDTRIP ALASKA CRUISES
Alaskan Roundtrip Cruises, also known as "Inside Passage Cruises," embark and disembark from the same city and most itineraries include a voyage to the famed glacier region. While most roundtrip cruises run 7 nights and depart from Vancouver, there are a few 3- and 4-night sailings available from Whittier, as well as select 10-night voyages departing from San Francisco. Your first day at sea usually features a trip through the Inside Passage. Then, depending on the ship and itinerary, you'll visit 3 or 4 of the following ports of call: Juneau, Glacier Bay, Ketchikan, Hubbard Glacier, Skagway/Haines, and Sitka. Upon arriving back in Vancouver, you'll either hop a flight home or spend a few days exploring British Columbia or Seattle (with hotel accommodations included).
About Alaska Cruises
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Products Related To An Alaska Cruise
Book an eligible stateroom on any qualifying sailing and receive a free upgrade! In some cases, you'll be upgraded to a more desirable location aboard your ship. In other instances, you'll be upgraded to a stateroom with extra space and/or a better view. It's also possible that you might receive all of these benefits. Select your sailing date to see which upgrades are available.