Shirley Watkins, one of our in house travel agents, conducted a 7 day group cruise tour to Alaska in August of 2009. The itinerary: Seattle, WA; Juneau, AK; Skagway, AK; Tracy Arm Fjord; Sawyer Glacier; Victoria, Canada.
Here are a few of the highlights of that trip and a few of the things to see and do if you choose to go on this type of cruise.
WHITE PASS RAIL TOUR - This is an incredibly popular Alaska cruise shore excursion. You take the historic White Pass rail into the Yukon Territory. This rail line dates back to 1900 and passes through incredible scenery, including lakes, forest, and mountains. A second version of the trip allows adventurous visitors to take the train up and bike back down through the amazing scenery to Skagway.
SEATTLE, WA: The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks, built in 1911 and often nicknamed the Ballard Locks, provides a link for boats between the salt water of Puget Sound and the fresh water of the Ship Canal, which connects eastward to Lake Union and Lake Washington.
Tourists and locals enjoy watching the parade of sailboats, motorboats, tugs, barges and yachts passing through, as the locks' water levels are adjusted to allow their safe passage.
Another popular spot is the fish ladder, built to allow salmon to pass between fresh and salt water, and to navigate the locks. Glass panels below the water line make it possible to watch the fish as they swim through the ladder.