I can't believe it has been a year since we first visited Alaska! As the summer heats up, this is a great time to think of a way to stay cool! What better way than to couple action and adventure with the relaxation of a cruise?!?!
An Alaskan cruise is the perfect getaway that gives options for every family to have fun. From glacier and rainforest hiking to snuggling with puppies and eagle sighting, Alaska has something for everyone.
A special thanks to The Oliver Family and my daughter for sharing their amazing pictures from our trips!! Read on to start planning your adventure!
A Pre Cruise Stay in British Columbia
When sailing from Vancouver, a great way to start your cruise is to plan a few "pre cruise" days in the area.
A great start to your trip is a visit to Vancouver's Stanley Park either on foot or on bike to visit the Aquarium, totem poles, Prospect Point, and Lions Gate Bridge.
Next - it's time for fun on the waterfront with: whale-watching, a Sewell’s Marina sea safari or wildlife tour, or kayaking from Granville Island. You can also, head to one of Vancouver’s beaches. Kitsilano, Second Beach and Jericho are all great options!
EARS TIP: If your family is torn on which excursion to do during your cruise -- taking a whale watching tour during your pre-cruise stay is a way to take advantage of other options during the cruise.
One more day! If you have time, I highly recommend adding a day to visit Victoria. Take the day to explore the Butchart Gardens, Butterfly Gardens and Craigdarroch Castle. Don't forget to schedule your Afternoon Tea in The Fairmont Empress Hotel!
If you're able, this is a great location to try hiking the Mendenhall Glacier. You'll be given footwear to help trek over the ice. Be sure to wear multiple layers, gloves and a hat -- temperature are cold and it is windy!
EARS TIP: You might have an opportunity to drink glacier water - if you have a small collapsible cup, I would tuck this into your pocket (you won't be able to bring purses, or backpacks if you're flying up to the glacier)
If you have time before returning to the ship I totally recommend stopping for a meal at the Red Dog Saloon! Live entertainment, fish and chips and an old time saloon atmosphere!
Our favorite family adventure was visiting the Musher's Camp in Skagway!
Prepare for a journey from your ship to an active Musher's Camp! You'll start by learning some of the basic commands for the sled dogs and be taken for a ride in a training sled. Along the way, you'll have a chance to meet the team and have plenty of snuggles. After your ride, you have time for some puppy love as you're introduced to the newest members of the team.
EARS TIP: The amount of time typically spent with puppies may only about 20 - 30 minutes, be sure to prepare everyone that you will need to share puppies with the rest of the group, too!
Explore the town, watch a lumberjack demonstration, or hike the rainforest - it's hard to know where to start in Ketchikan!
Before we left for our cruise, everyone told us that Alaska was a "one and done" destination - going once was enough. I cannot disagree more. So much to do and see at each port convinced me I needed to return!
A truly amazing experience, I recommend everyone take the opportunity to cruise Alaska again and again!
Monica Clark, your