These on-water experiences—which may also extend to Glacier Bay National Park or intimate inlets of the Inside Passage, depending on the itinerary for your cruise to Alaska—complement land excursions that often highlight the state’s larger-than-life outdoor adventures, history, culture and lifestyle. For your cruise to Alaska, it’s important to book port excursions in advance, particularly popular ones such as a ride on the White Pass and Yukon Route’s scenic, narrow-gauge railroad. The “White Pass Summit Excursion” begins in Skagway and chugs to the 2,865-foot summit of White Pass, offering passengers majestic views as onboard narrators illuminate the history of the railroad, the Klondike Gold Rush and landmarks seen along the way.
Excursions into Denali National Park are widely enjoyed as well. But after a day of flightseeing above the highest peak in North America, 20,320-foot-tall Denali, or hiking the park’s trails in search of bears, moose and spectacular views, it’s nice to retire to the cruise ship knowing that you have to do little but choose your bedtime.