Alaska is America’s last great frontier. With magnificent mountains, stunning glaciers, captivating coastline, pretty villages, and dense forests with exotic wildlife, it also happens to be one of the world’s favourite cruise destinations. With a comfortably wide cruising season from May to September, a typical cruise holiday to Alaska offers a plethora of tours and activities that attract all types of travellers. Major ports of call include Seward, Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan, Glacial Bay National Park, Hubbard Glacier and Tracy Arm Fjord.
Juneau: For the adventure lovers there’s no better place than Juneau. Be it the small-boat excursion to do some whale watching, or the exhilarating helicopter ride over massive glaciers, or riding a real dog sled, Juneau gives you an unforgettable experience.
Chilkat: At the world-famous Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve in Haines, you can have a quiet picnic on the banks of the Chilkat River and maybe even cross the waters to catch a glimpse of the Preserve’s wild inhabitants, including bald eagles, bears, moose, otters and beavers.
Sitka: The town of Sitka is well-known for its Russian and Tlingit heritage. Especially for the art and history seeker, the town offers a variety of attractions including wild arts artist walk, Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center or the Sitka National Historical Park.
Skagway: This is another beautiful destination with a spectacular array of glaciers, mountains, tunnels and waterfalls. The White Pass Scenic Railway, with its old fashioned parlour cars, is one of the not-to-be-missed tours, which takes you all the way up to a mind boggling height of 2,800-feet. You could also take the Glacier Point Wilderness Safari, on a high-speed expedition boat to explore exotic wildlife through the beautiful woods and creeks.
Ketchikan: This popular Alaskan destination mostly known for its Bering Sea Crab Fisherman’s Tour and the Mountain Point Snorkelling Adventure. The highlight of Ketchikan, however, is a very interesting tour of the Saxman Native Village that gives you a true feel of the native Tlingit culture.
Icy Strait Point: Your Alaskan holiday is not complete without the adventurous zip line cable ride at the Icy Strait Point. At 5,330 feet long and at a height of 1,300 feet, it claims to be the longest, highest and the most electrifying cable ride in the world.
You could choose from a range of cruise packages based on your interests and the length of your holiday – either take the comparatively longer ‘Inside Passage’ round-trip (beginning and ending at the same port – either Seattle or Vancouver) or opt for the ‘Gulf of Alaska’ cruises that sail either northbound (North from Vancouver) or southbound (South from Anchorage). Since the Gulf of Alaska cruises are one-way trips, you get to spend more time on the Alaskan land than on the sea, making them ideal for adventurous land and air excursions.
Premium cruise operators on this route include Celebrity, Oceania, Princess and Holland America. Crystal, Regent, Seabourn and Silversea operate in the luxury cruise space, whereas Carnival, Disney, NCL and Royal Caribbean are best suited for families with children.
Celebrity Cruises: A Great Way to Explore Alaska
Started in 1989, Celebrity is a premium cruise liner that offers a striking combination of comfort, class and personalized service. A member of Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises owns ten magnificent ships – Century, Mercury, Constellation, Infinity, Millennium, Summit, Eclipse, Equinox, Silhouette and Solstice. These ships are known for their sleek contemporary décor and sophisticated art collections – the new Solstice-class ships are probably the world’s most elegant cruise ships. All cruise packages include specially designed international cuisine, on-board programs and specialty services such as enrichment sessions, entertainment programs, talent shows, luxury spas, sports facilities and pool games.
With an impressive crew to passenger ratio of 1: 2, Celebrity ships boast of exceptionally polite and professional service. It has won the best premium cruise line title (Travel weekly’s readers’ choice awards), for eight years in a row.
The Alaska Cruise tours offered by Celebrity Cruises are particularly extensive. With two of its grand ships – ‘Celebrity Millennium’ and ‘Celebrity Solstice’ serving dedicatedly on this route, the liner offers several itineraries ranging from short (7 – 8 night) journeys to medium (10 – 12 night) and long (13 night) cruises. Visit CruiseBay to explore the wide range of Celebrity Cruises to Alaska in 2016
Celebrity Cruises also promises a range of attractive offers on its Alaskan tour packages. There are specific offers based on the room category booked – Ocean View, Veranda, Concierge Class, Aqua Class and Suite. If you book an Ocean View stateroom or higher, you could save as much as US$2,150 and get two free perks on almost every Celebrity Cruise sailing! This offer is valid for almost all sailings before April 2017. The perks include classic beverage package for two, prepaid gratuities for two, unlimited internet for two, or US$150 to spend on board for two. In addition, if you enroll in the Captain’s Club, you stand to earn exclusive benefits depending on how many times you’ve cruised with Celebrity Cruises.
If you are looking for a premium cruise experience to one of the world’s most beautiful destinations, look no further. Book an Alaska cruise package with Celebrity Cruises and get a heady mix of on-board sophistication, entertainment, luxury, natural beauty and adventure.