Close this search box.

Exploring the Majestic Glaciers of Alaska’s Inside Passage

Alaska's Inside Passage

Inside Passage, Alaska cruises take you through a dreamscape of white-capped peaks, calving glaciers, deep fjords, and forests that stretch as far as the eye can see. Here’s all you need to know about Alaska cruises to the legendary Inside Passage, from where it is to how to prepare for the weather. 

Where is Alaska’s Inside Passage?

Alaska’s Inside Passage is a waterway network connecting Seattle and the southern Alaska panhandle. It is a popular ship network because it provides safe, smooth-as-glass sailing. It is one of the few routes in the world with deep enough water to allow cruise ships to approach cliffs. 

The Inside Passage has islands, coves, bays, national parks, and fjords, allowing you to visit secluded communities only by boat or plane. It is simply amazing. 

Wildlife to See on an Alaska Inside Passage Cruise? 

In Haines, a beachside village in Alaska’s Inside Passage, eagles outnumber humans. That speaks volumes about the richness of animals in these seas. 

Watch for fat otters and seals resting on ice floes when navigating fjords. You may observe humpback whales, which are noted for their frequent and beautiful breaching. Watch for clever orcas that dine on salmon in Alaska’s Inside Passage. 

Whale viewing in Alaska is a very humbling experience. The first sign of a whale is usually a plume of steam rising from the ocean. Keep your binoculars ready! 

Search the woodland and windswept beaches for terrestrial creatures. Alaskan brown bears forage along the coast (grizzlies reside deeper inland). You may spot an elusive mountain goat standing on a ledge. 

An Alaska cruise to the Inside Passage is ideal if you enjoy birding. Everyone enjoys seeing soaring raptors, but there are also many puffins, cormorants, and terns to observe. 

Glaciers to See on an Inside Passage Alaska Cruise? 

You’ll be shocked at how unspoiled the landscape appears, but the glaciers you’ll see during your Inside Passage Alaska trip tell a different story. Except for Hubbard and a few others, the majority of Alaska’s glaciers are fast disappearing, which is a worrying sign of climate change. 

While admiring these arctic-blue beauties, you may notice icebergs “calving” into the water. 

Glaciers are nature’s sculptors, transforming the land in many ways. Depending on the Inside Passage Alaska cruise you choose, you may see the twin Sawyer Glaciers at the end of Tracy Arm, the Hubbard Glacier in Disenchantment Bay, the aptly named glaciers in College Fjord, or the mile-wide Margerie Glacier, a popular spot for ice calving in Glacier Bay National Park. 

Towns Can I Visit on an Inside Passage Alaska Cruise? 

Cruise Alaska’s Inside Passage to discover distant outposts and secluded settlements. 

Ketchikan is frequently the first “landfall” before exploring the Inside Passage fjords. On a trip to Ketchikan, you may visit finely carved totem poles and other Native Alaskan cultural sites, including Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian. The Creek Street boardwalk is exciting and an excellent site to observe swimming salmon in season. 

Juneau, the foggy, laid-back capital, is famed for its outdoor activities. When you cruise to Juneau, you can walk a glacier and enjoy freshly caught seafood while lounging on the beach. Climb Mount Roberts for panoramic vistas or go on a whale-watching expedition from Auke Bay. 

Sitka, located on the west side of Baranof Island, is the biggest city borough in the United States and has a rich history to discover. It hosted the Alaska purchase transfer ceremony and was influenced by the Tlingit and Russian cultures. Find out about the top three things to do in Sitka, Alaska. 

Skagway. If you want to experience the exhilaration of the gold rush, stop in Skagway while on an Inside Passage Alaska cruise. Skagway, once a boisterous frontier town and the gateway to the gold fields, is now a mix of curio stores, bars, galleries, and museums surrounded by natural beauty. 

What Should I Wear on Alaska Inside Passage Cruises? 

Tell your buddies you’re going on an Alaska Inside Passage cruise, and they’ll say, “But what about the weather?” 

A classic Scandinavian adage says, “There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing.” The better you plan and pack, the more comfortable you will be. That does not imply overpacking your bag; it means packing enough appropriate gear for the Alaskan climate. 

Pack waterproof coats and layers—you’ll need to be prepared for a sunny and fantastic day since July highs often range from 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Occasionally, it reaches the 70s and 80s. 

Pack plenty of sweaters, scarves, long-sleeve shirts, long underwear, a water-resistant jacket, rain boots, sunglasses, swimwear, and a couple of evenings of formal attire. This Alaska cruise packing guide includes more hints and recommendations. 

May to September is the finest time to take an Inside Passage Alaska trip. We can’t wait to show you this fantastic site. View Vacation Amour Passage to start arranging your journey. 


Amour Kachnycz

Travel Expert-Franchise Owner
Destination Weddings, Honeymoons, All Inclusive, Cruises, Land, Expeditions, Guided Travel, Flexible Independent travel and more!