If you enjoy pristine, unspoiled wilderness areas, a Glacier Bay cruise may be just right for you. Glacier Bay has 16 impressive tidewater glaciers. The area is within Glacier Bay National Park, so you know that you're encountering an unspoiled wilderness area. A Glacier Bay cruise is ideal for nature lovers, wildlife and bird watchers, and anyone seeking an alternative to cruises in tropical areas. Glacier Bay cruises are very well-suited to families with kids. A cruise through Glacier Bay is a very relaxing trip.
Most cruises in this area are part of a 7 to 11 night itinerary. A few cruises combine a trip through Glacier Bay with stops along Japan's coast. Glacier Bay can also be visited as part of a day cruise, good for those who don't have a longer time commitment to make. Regardless of your cruise length, you're assured of having a wonderful experience. You'll certainly come back with a lot of fun memories of your trip. Before you explore the park, a park ranger will board your ship to tell you about what to expect.
A Diverse Landscape
Though Glacier Bay is most famous for its tidewater glaciers, the scenery in the park is very diverse. The coastal area has become heavily forested, with lots of hemlock and spruce trees. Cottonwood trees grow quite abundantly. Other plant and flower species include mosses and fireweed. You'll be amazed at the number of plant species seen here.
The Fairweather mountain range sits at the mouth of the bay, with impressive snow-capped peaks. Several of the mountain peaks top 10,000 feet. The forest area is a coastal rainforest similar to others located in the Pacific Northwest.
Several Ways to Explore
Glacier Bay is easily explored by boat. Cruises will take visitors up close to the glaciers. If you're interested in sights further inland, river rafting or kayaking is a good option. The rivers running through the park are normally pretty calm.
There are also several ways to see this area by land. One good way of seeing the sights is through a ranger-guided walk. This allows you to visit the areas most commonly visited by wildlife very easily. Hiking and mountain climbing are hugely popular in this park.
Alaska has some of the country's most impressive wildlife, and Glacier Bay is no exception. The first animals you're likely to encounter are the various marine animals that live in the bay. Cute sea otters are commonly seen, and seals breed along the beaches. Sea lions also congregate here. Humpback whales often show up in the bay, along with Dall porpoises and orcas. Up to 200 species of fish that include cod, pollock, and halibut.
Both black bears and grizzlies are seen making their way through the park. Wolves and coyotes have been seen more frequently. Herds of moose commonly show up around the mouth of the bay. Terns, bald eagles, and geese migrate through the area.