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Alaska Cruises – The Best Times and Destinations to Cruise

Alaska cruises have become substantially more popular in the past decade. The northwestern-most state has gained huge notoriety as one of the most beautiful destinations to visit because of its serene mix of natural features. Here are the best Alaska cruises to consider for your next trip. There are so many different kinds of destinations to hit, it’s tough to pick only a few.

Cruises to Alaska

Before listing the best cruises to Alaska, it is important to consider the different kinds of cruises to Alaska that you can take.

When planning an Alaskan cruise, you’ll usually start by picking out a destination that you want to make it to within the state. Maybe you’ve been dying to see the majesty of the expansive Denali National Park, or perhaps you can’t wait to see the immense Hubbard Glacier.

Whatever you desire in your cruise, there’s definitely an option for every type of adventurer. Here are a few of the cruises has to offer.

1. Land and Sea Cruise

A magnificent cruise offered by Princess Cruises, the 11-day Land and Sea cruise includes a seven-day cruise of the glaciers and a four-day land tour. You’ll travel from Anchorage (Whittier) to Vancouver, B.C., (or reverse) making stops in some of the world’s most famous port cities:

  • Juneau
  • Skagway
  • Ketchikan

Every itinerary will give you access to two glacier-viewing experiences — including the famous Hubbard Glacier, Glacier Bay National Park, or College Fjord. If you’ve been keen to be exposed to the wonder of Alaska’s glaciers, this is one of the top Alaska cruises to consider.

2. 7 Night Alaska Glacier Cruise

Another one of my favorite seven-day Alaska cruises is the aptly named 7 Night Alaska Glacier Cruise offered by Royal Caribbean as well as Holland America, Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line.

In contrast to the Voyage of the Glaciers offered by Princess Cruises, this cruise will start its journey in Seattle. You’ll cruise through the sea, up into Alaska, seeing sights along the way until you arrive at Juneau.

From there, you’ll continue on to more historic port towns in Alaska and get your full fill of glacial sightings and natural beauty. You can expect to see the iconic Endicott Arm and Dawes Glacier along the way. Depending on what cruise line you are on you might see Glacier Bay National Park or Hubbard Glacier.

With plenty of flexible options, this is one of the best cruises for Alaska newcomers.

3. Denali Cruise Tour

Looking for a little mix of land and sea in your Alaskan cruise? Then you’ll want to know about one of the best deals on Alaska cruises. Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises all offer awesome Cruise tours

These tours take you deep into both the Alaskan waters as well as beautiful nature reserves. In particular, the Denali Cruise tour is one of the greatest land and sea cruises to Alaska around.

Did you know that Denali National Park is the home of the tallest mountain in North America? Standing at 20,310 feet, the Denali is a site to behold. Juxtaposed against six million acres of diverse wilderness, it’s a scene that you won’t soon forget.

Being one of the premier land and sea Alaska cruises, you can expect to get intimate with the landlife. This means encounters with the famous Big Five — moose, wolves, grizzly bears, caribou, and Dall sheep.

With only one road that goes into the park, the Denali’s nature has been relatively untouched for centuries. Your visit will be a trip back in time, to an era that no longer exists in many parts of the world. This is not one to miss!

4. 14-Day Voyage of the Glaciers Grand Adventure

Are you prepared to embark on a grand adventure? This isn’t your average everyday cruise — at 14 days in length, you’re going to have the experience of a lifetime.

Powered by Princess Cruises, you’ll hit seven different ports across 14 days, and have multiple opportunities for scenic cruising.

Many of the other destinations that I wrote about above are also included in this tour, but it’s an expansive time frame that gives you ample time to enjoy what Alaska has to offer.

Packed with lots of options for little on-land excursions and adventures, this represents one of the best deals on Alaska cruises. Some discount cruises to Alaska sacrifice sights for time and money, but that was far from my experience with this one.

You’ll leave no stone unturned in Alaska if you embark on this grand adventure! Similar cruises are offered by Holland America and Oceana.

Alaska Cruises FAQs

If I’ve succeeded in getting you excited for cruises Alaska has to offer, then you probably have a few questions about what to do next!

These are some handy dandy Alaska cruises FAQ’s to get ready for your very own adventure.

What are Alaska cruise excursions?

Most cruises offer shore excursions such as hikes, bus tours or other opportunities to get familiar with a local area.

If you choose one of the land and sea cruises to Alaska, you can expect to get a few more land excursions than your average cruise.

What is the best time to cruise to Alaska?

Typically, May through September is regarded as the optimal time to cruise to Alaska. July and August are where the season hits its peak, so if you’re looking to not fight the crowd, you may try to be on the earlier or later end of the season.

However, July and August are often when the temperatures hit their peak too, so the weather is generally sunnier. Finding the best deals on Alaska cruises can depend on when you choose to visit, of course.

What kind of amenities are provided?

There are plenty of all inclusive Alaska cruises that make sure your every need is met for the quoted price. Certain cruises will have longer excursions on land, and may have additional lodging on land that’s included in your price.

There are some excursions, however, that are additional costs in your cruise. Talking to one of our specialty trip planners here at AAA of WA can be a big help in conceptualizing your cost and customizing your itinerary.

How do I go about planning my Alaskan cruise?

Many of the cruises that I’ve written about up here are able to be planned and arranged for you with a little help from us.

When you outsource planning out your cruise, you can spend your time and energy focusing on actually enjoying the experience. There can be lots of little moving parts and logistics, so you can leave the heavy lifting to us!

Plan Your Alaska Cruise Today!

With so many different types of cruises to Alaska to choose from, it’s understandable to feel a bit overwhelmed at the possibilities. The good news is, you simply can’t go wrong with the beauty of Alaska.

If you’re just getting started in planning out your next Alaska cruise, we can help!

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