Cruising to Alaska
Alaska cruise tips, including the best time to visit AlaskaAlaska covers an area approximately 586,000 square miles in size, and it's by far the largest state in America. It's also home to North America's tallest mountain – the majestic Mt. McKinley, rising an incredible 20,320 feet into the sky. Alaska boasts 34,000 miles of coastline – more than all of the other states combined – and a total of 3 million lakes dot the Last Frontier's wilderness. Alaska's famed Inside Passage is a web of quiet fjords and peaceful islands forested with hemlock and spruce. Shaped by glaciers millions of years ago, it's the traditional home of Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian Indians.
The Alaskan cruise season begins in May and ends in September. Not surprisingly, the peak travel period occurs during the warmest part of the year - mid-June through mid-August. Many travelers, however, consider the fall and spring to be Alaska's most beautiful seasons - and these months generally offer more opportunities for big cruise savings.
It's a good idea to plan for four types of weather - warm, cool, cold, and (occasionally) wet. Alaska's vast size, varied topography, and geographical location can result in a wide range of conditions.
During the summer months, high temperatures in the inland town of Fairbanks can reach 80°F. Cruising among the Inside Passage's glaciers generally means cooler temps (with more sea breezes blowing on deck). Further along the coast in Anchorage and Denali, the weather is normally pleasant and sunny but slightly cooler. Average temperatures across the state hover in the mid-60s during peak season and the mid-50s in the spring and fall.
Families who want to experience Alaska's beauty on land can choose from more than 60 organized shore excursions (in three activity levels - easy, moderate, and adventure/considerable). Excursions range from exciting glacial flight-seeing tours and mountain biking expeditions to more leisurely pursuits like nature walks and city tours.
Dressing For An Alaska Cruise
Cruising the Inside Passage and planning to do a little sightseeing on deck? Keep a waterproof windbreaker (or a light jacket) and an umbrella handy - the region is cool year-round and subject to sporadic (but gentle) showers. Rubber-soled shoes are a good idea, too. Touring Alaska's coastal towns? An umbrella may be cumbersome. A raincoat, however, frees up your hands - perfect if you'll be carrying around a camera or a shopping bag filled with souvenirs in a port like Ketchikan, which receives up to 100 inches of rainfall annually. Dressing in layers is the way to go if you'll be exploring the Alaskan wilderness. Pack some short-sleeved shirts (though it's doubtful you'll have much need for a pair of shorts), sweaters, and sturdy, comfortable hiking boots or rubber-soled shoes.
Packing For An Alaska Cruise
The biggest factor to consider is Alaska's weather, of course. But activities at sea and ashore may also require special packing. The following checklist includes some additional suggestions to help you get started - it's by no means comprehensive, but it's a good place to begin.
- Binoculars (one pair per passenger)
- Camera (with extra film and batteries)
- Video Camera
- Hiking Boots
- Thermal Socks
- Heavy jacket
- Light Jacket/Windbreaker
- Sweaters, Sweatshirts & Long-Sleeved Shirts
- Short-Sleeved Shirts
- Long Underwear
- Formalwear (for dining and cocktails)
- Swimsuit (for the swimming pool/whirlpool)
- Exercise Clothes (for the fitness center)
- Comfortable Walking Shoes
- Overnight Bag (for the train)
- Government-Issued Photo I.D. (driver's license/military I.D.)
- Proof of U.S. Citizenship (valid passport/notarized copy of birth certificate with photo I.D. - Canadian ports of call only)
Alaska Land and Cruise Tours
The most popular way to see Alaska, cruise tours combine the best of the sea and land - a top-brand cruise plus a scenic land tour with deluxe hotel accommodations - to create the ultimate Alaskan adventure. Cruising gives you the chance to get close to the region's magnificent glaciers and marine life, and provides passengers with the opportunity to sample a variety of coastal ports. Land tours feature lodging in one or more destinations and take you deep into the heart of Alaska's mountain wilderness and myriad cultures. Select packages include transportation in the famed domed cars of the Alaska Railroad, offering incredible views en route to Denali National Park or Mt. McKinley. Many cruise tours also include premium motorcoach service, plus fully escorted sightseeing tours of city centers, national parks, and museums.
Cruise tours run anywhere from 9 to 21 nights. For the most variety, choose a one-way northbound or southbound cruise, since any pre- or post-cruise hotel stay allows for extended sightseeing in two different cities. When you choose a Northbound Cruise Tour, you'll cruise first and conclude your journey with a land tour. Southbound Cruise Tours are a popular choice with travelers looking to treat themselves to a relaxing voyage at sea after experiencing the excitement of a land tour. You can't go wrong either way.
Up To A $200 Hotel Voucher *Best Value: Up To A $200 Hotel Voucher *Turn your cruise getaway into another vacation! For most cruise reservations, this is the best value – you'll receive the greatest amount of FREE cash. In many cases, you can claim up to DOUBLE the amount received when compared to "Onboard Spending" or "Cash Back" bonuses! Receive up to $200 towards a hotel stay, choose from over 200,000 hotel locations world-wide, and take up to 12 months from the date of your cruise to reserve and stay. Value of hotel certificate is based on total price (which can be found on your invoice under “Total Price”), minus port charges & taxes.*
Total Price (minus port charges & taxes)Hotel Cash$0 - $1,250$50$1,251 - $2,250$100$2,251 - $3,000$125$3,001 - $3,500$150$3,501+$200Additional Terms & Conditions
"Hotel Cash" offer is only valid for new individual cruise bookings made for cruises departing by 12/31/19. Offer is per stateroom, varies based on the price of cruise minus taxes and port charges, is not reflected in advertised prices, and will not exceed $200. There is a minimum night stay based on the voucher amount ($50 voucher - 1 Night Stay; $100 & $125 voucher - 2 Night Stay; $150 & $200 voucher - 3 Night Stay). Hotel discount voucher will be emailed, at least 60 days prior to your sail date, to the email address that was made using your cruise booking. Hotel must be booked using hotelloyaltyrewards.com and entering code found in email. Hotel voucher is not redeemable for cash.
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 is based on total price (which can be found on your invoice under "Total Price"), minus port charges & taxes. †
Total Price (minus port charges & taxes)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+$750Additional Terms & Conditions
"Onboard Spending" offer is valid for select Carnival, Celebrity, Holland America, Norwegian, Princess, and Royal Caribbean sailings departing on or before 4/12/2019. Spending amount will be credited to your onboard account after our online redemption form, which may be accessed via the link that will be included with your invoice, has been submitted (form must be submitted no later than 21 days prior to departure or "Onboard Spending" offer will be forfeited). Spending amount is non-transferable and cannot be exchanged for cash; unused portions will expire if not redeemed on or before the final night of your sailing. Onboard credit will appear in a passenger's onboard account on the day of embarkation. Not valid for cancelled or rebooked cruises.
Up To $1,000 Cash Back ‡- Book Online or Call!Cash Back: Up To $1,000 Cash Back ‡ - Book Online or Call!A unique opportunity to recoup select expenses that aren't included in your cruise fare! Just book a qualifying voyage - once you've returned from that sailing, you'll be eligible to receive up to $1,000 cash back, which can be applied towards your onboard spending. Please see our grid below for bonus amounts. Restrictions apply, see terms below for details. Amount is based on total price (which can be found on your invoice under "Total Price"), minus port charges & taxes. ‡
Total Price (minus port charges & taxes)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+$1,000Additional Terms & Conditions
"Cash Back" offer is per stateroom and is not reflected in our advertised prices; actual amount will vary based on your total price, minus port charges & taxes. "Cash Back" offer is valid for select sailings departing on or before 4/12/2019; excludes all Azamara, Celebrity, Oceania, Princess, Royal Caribbean, and Silversea sailings. "Cash Back" amount for Carnival cruise bookings may not exceed 10% of total value of cruise. Customer must spend equivalent value onboard cruise to qualify for full value of Cash Back. OBC does not count as spending. Only out of pocket spending counts. Amount will be credited to card used for purchase 4 - 6 weeks after the online redemption form, found on your invoice, has been submitted (form must be submitted post-cruise and no later than 60 days from the date on which you return). Proof/folio submission, detailing your onboard spending, is also required. Proof/folio may be submitted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, via fax at (978) 570-1992 (Attn: Onboard Spending Reimbursement), or via mail (Onboard Reimbursement Department, c/o World Travel Holdings, 100 Fordham Road, Building C, 2nd Floor, Wilmington, MA, 01887).
Book Now, Pay Later:
No Deposit Required- Book Online or Call!Book Now, Pay Later: No Deposit Required - 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. In addition, choose to streamline payment even further by splitting your fare into easy monthly installments with 0% interest!
BOOK NOW - OFFER ENDS FRIDAY!Additional Terms & Conditions
Advanced Deposit offer is valid for new individual cruise reservations for sailings departing by 12/31/19. Offer is limited to sailings of 3 nights or longer booked at least 110 days prior to departure (or 140 days for Disney, MSC, and 7-night or longer Norwegian 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 Alaska Exclusive:
Up to a $75 Shore Excursion CreditOur Alaska Exclusive: Up to a $75 Shore Excursion CreditAlaska truly is a destination like no other, and there's no better way to experience all Alaska has to offer than on an exciting cruise! And now's the time to book - for a limited time, when you book a stateroom aboard select Alaska sailings, we'll give you a free shore excursion worth up to $75! So enjoy the adventure of a lifetime, on us! Just don't wait to book - this offer won't last long.
HURRY - OFFER ENDS SOON!
Search Alaska cruisesAdditional Terms & Conditions
Free Shore Excursion offer is valid only for new bookings made between 3/16/18 and 9/15/18 in any stateroom category of 5 nights or longer on most Alaska sailings departing between 4/27/18 and 9/23/18. Valid on select Carnival, Norwegian, Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, Disney, Princess and Holland America sailings. Excludes sailings that do not visit ports where we offer shore excursion services. Must submit a valid email address while booking. Offer will be fulfilled with an email containing a coupon code and instructions for redeeming a shore excursion on our shore excursion site. Does not apply to all shore excursions offered. Coupon code is valued at $75, is non-refundable, non-transferable and expires 9/15/18. Excursions must be reserved no later than 4 days prior to departure. Applies to one guest per stateroom. This promotion is subject to change at any time. Additional restrictions may apply.
Call to Add on Pre/Post Land Tours to Your Alaska CruiseAlaska Cruisetours: Call to Add on Pre/Post Land Tours to Your Alaska CruiseIf you're looking for an exciting vacation experience filled with next-level excursions, you've come to the right place! Discover dogsled racing, bear, moose and caribou watching, along with nature's most alluring sights including mountainous glaciers, picturesque coastlines, and more - when you book select cruisetours on an Alaska cruise adventure. These multi-night, pre- or post-cruise land tours allow you to experience all that Alaska has to offer.
Call now - our experts are standing by to help customize this one-of-a-kind dream vacation.
Search Alaska cruises
Extra-Reduced Cruise Rates48-Hour Sale: Extra-Reduced Cruise RatesGet on board with this incredible sale! For 48 hours only, you can score amazing, extra-reduced rates on select Carnival sailings departing through Summer 2018. Hurry – this offer ends soon!
ONLY HOURS LEFT – BOOK NOW!
Search Carnival cruisesAdditional Terms & Conditions
Offer is applicable on new bookings made between 12:00 AM EST on 3/19/18 and 11:59 PM EST on 3/20/18 on select Carnival sailings through Summer 2018. Offer is capacity controlled and is not combinable with any other discount or promotional offer. Rates may vary by ship, stateroom type and sail date. Changes made to the reservation may result in the assessment of cancellation penalties or service fees. Carnival reserves the right to withdraw and/or change offer at any time without prior notice. Offer is for the cruise fare only and does not include Taxes, Fees and Port Expenses. Deposit is a non-refundable and non-transferable. Offer is applicable in guarantee categories IS/OV/BL only. Carnival will assign the stateroom at a later time. Some restrictions including stateroom/category availability apply. Cancellation penalties apply. Amenities are must buy up.
Free Upgrade Sale:
Great Low Rates + 2-Category UpgradeFree Upgrade Sale: Great Low Rates + 2-Category UpgradePlan your cruise early and enjoy incredible savings! For a limited time, enjoy a free 2-category upgrade along with Great Low Rates.
BOOK NOW – OFFER ENDS 3/20!
Search Carnival cruisesAdditional Terms & Conditions
Offer available on new bookings made between 3/13/18 and 3/20/18 on select sailings through April of 2020. Cruise rates are in US dollars, per person and based on double occupancy. Offer is capacity controlled and is not combinable with any other discount or promotional offer. Rates may vary by ship, stateroom type and sail date. Changes made to the reservation may result in the assessment of cancellation penalties or service fees. Category restrictions and exclusions apply. Carnival reserves the right to withdraw and/or change offer at any time without prior notice. Offer is for the cruise fare only and does not include Taxes, Fees and Port Expenses. Taxes, Fees and Port Expenses range from $56.90 to $359.73, and are assessed on a per guest basis for all guests according to the itinerary. Guest may select the stateroom, but a minimum purchase of category 4A is required. Upgrades are automatically assigned at the time of booking and are based on availability in like to like categories only (interior to interior, ocean view to ocean view and balcony to balcony). Free room location upgrade is not available on upper/lower, obstructed, and cove categories. Subsequent upgrades in lieu of price protection will no longer be offered. Cancellation penalties apply. Offer bookings made as part of a group will include amenities. Offer is applicable on select sailings through Spring 2018 where Early Saver has expired. Offer does not apply to Carnival Australia. Offer is applicable on new bookings made between March 13, 2018 and March 20, 2018. Please request rate code PBP. Ships' Registry: The Bahamas, Panama & Malta.
Sail Beyond Event:
Save up to $400 + 2 FREE Perks Including Drinks, Gratuities & MoreSail Beyond Event: Save up to $400 + 2 FREE Perks Including Drinks, Gratuities & MoreGet the most out of your cruise right now by getting up to $400 in savings, plus 2 free onboard perks for the first 2 guests in a cabin. Or, all 4 perks when you book a suite. Choices are as follows:
- Classic beverage package for 2 with beverage gratuities included, becomes a value of $1,557.60 per stateroom ($110 per day, per stateroom plus gratuities)
- Up to $400 to spend on board
- Unlimited Xcelerate High-Speed Internet Package for 2
- Free pre-paid gratuities for 2 – we'll pay your tips
Plus, 3rd/4th/5th guests receive 50% off fares.
HURRY - OFFER ENDS SOON!
Search Celebrity cruisesAdditional Terms & Conditions
Offer is valid only for new individual bookings made between 3/1/18 and 4/2/18 by midnight Eastern Standard Time for select staterooms aboard the Celebrity sailings departing between 3/3/18 and 4/30/19. Not all dates in this range qualify. Offer is valid for the 1st and 2nd passengers on the reservation. Savings are equal to $200 per person and are based on the category booked. Get 2 free perks for Ocean-view, Veranda, Concierge Class and AquaClass. Get 4 perks on Suite bookings. Not applicable with any other discount or promotional offer. Offer is subject to availability, capacity-controlled, limited by the cruise line, and may be changed or withdrawn at any time without notice. Additional restrictions may apply.
Summer on Sale:
Up to 40% Off Top DestinationsSummer on Sale: Up to 40% Off Top DestinationsThere's never been a better time to cruise with Princess! For a limited time only, you can enjoy unbeatable savings on some of your favorite cruises:
- Take up to 40% off select Europe & Japan cruises
- Take up to 30% off select Alaska cruises & Cruisetours
- Take up to 35% off select Summer Caribbean cruises
OFFER ENDS SOON!
Search Princess CruisesAdditional Terms & Conditions
Offer is valid only for new individual bookings made by telephone between 2/15/18 and 4/24/18 by 11:59 pm ET for any stateroom category on select Princess Cruise sailings. Offer applies to select Alaska, Europe and Japan sailings and select Alaska cruisetours only. Up to 40% off is based on a discount off applicable Launch Fares on a space-available basis at time of booking on select categories and sailings. This offer has limited space regardless of stateroom availability and may not be combinable with any other public, group or past guest offers, including Air discounts. Offer is subject to availability, capacity-controlled, not combinable with other offers, limited by the cruise line, and may be changed or withdrawn at any time without notice. Additional restrictions may apply.
Summer on Sale:
3rd & 4th Guests Sail from $399Summer on Sale: 3rd & 4th Guests Sail from $399Are you ready for your best summer yet? Get a whole group together and sail with Princess! For a limited time only, enjoy unbeatable reduced rates from just $399 for your 3rd and 4th stateroom guests. But hurry - this offer won't last!
OFFER ENDS SOON!
Search Princess cruisesAdditional Terms & Conditions
Offer is valid only for new individual bookings made by telephone between 2/15/18 and 4/24/18 by 11:59 pm ET for any stateroom category on select Princess Cruise sailings. Offer applies to select Alaska, Europe and Japan sailings and select Alaska cruisetours only. Fares apply to the 3rd or 4th guests booked in the same stateroom as the first and second guests and apply to minimum lead-in categories on a space-available basis at time of booking. Fares for other categories may vary. This offer has limited space regardless of stateroom availability and subject to combinability limitations. Fares quoted in U.S. dollars. Call for details.
FEATURED ALASKA CRUISES
NORTH OR SOUTHBOUND GULF OF ALASKA CRUISES
Crisp air, the spray of ocean as whales crest the surface, and thundering cliffs – welcome to Alaska. Choose from a huge selection of cruise lines and set out into the great North, where you'll visit settlements and cities, witness herds of wildlife on the shores, and encounter the splendor of Mother Nature every time you step out onto deck. Alaskan Gulf cruises span all the way up into the Anchorage area, and include sailings across the Icy Strait, a visit into Sitka for shopping and hiking, and encounters with the Mendenhall Glacier when you weigh anchor in Juneau.
ROUNDTRIP ALASKA CRUISES
From drifting icebergs to towering pine trees and beyond, an Alaskan getaway through the Inside Passage is a strikingly beautiful voyage. The passage itself is over 1,000 miles along and is famous for its unusually calm waters. Take in the sights of gray wolves, herds of caribou, and grizzly bears. Sail Glacier Bay and snap photographs of tidewater glaciers. Dock in Sitka, Ketchikan, and Juneau to learn more about the history and culture of this rugged landscape. Visit research stations, parks, hiking trails, shopping centers, and more. With a wide range of cruise lines to choose from, build you dream Alaskan vacation and explore the Great North at your own pace, in your own style.
Search Cruise Lines Traveling to Alaska:
Carnival Cruise Lines from $739
Celebrity Cruises from $499
Disney Cruise Line from $1,732
Holland America Line from $559
Norwegian Cruise Line from $549
About Alaska Cruises
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.