Sightseeing:In Dawson City and Fairbanks; College & Harriman Fjords cruise in Prince William Sound, Diamond Tooth Gertie’s Saloon, authentic Alaska roadhouse, Sternwheeler Riverboat Discovery III, world-famous Alaska Railroad, and Iditarod Visitor Center.
Scenic Highlights:Columbia Glacier in Prince William Sound, Wrangell-St. Elias National Park & Preserve, Denali National Park, Matanuska Valley, scenic Tahneta Pass, Worthington Glacier, Tok: the “Dog Sled Capital of the World,” Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge, Kluane National Park, Trail of ’98, Five Finger Rapids, and Top of the World Highway.
Services of a professional Tour Director; crew member service while cruising the Inside Passage on Holland America’s MS Statendam or MS Oosterdam.
- While wildlife in Alaska is frequently seen, early season (May & early June) and late season (September) departures offer even greater opportunities for viewing a variety of wildlife. Departures after mid-August should enjoy blazing fall colors.
- Visiting and participating in activities in these locations is subject to favorable weather conditions.
- Cruise itineraries are provided by Holland America Line and are up to date at time of publishing. Your travel documents will contain the most current information.
Enjoy time at leisure to relax or to do some independent exploring. Your Tour Director is on hand this evening to answer any questions.
Journey to Whittier and board your deluxe catamaran for a once-in-a-lifetime adventure. CRUISE to College and Harriman Fjords in Prince William Sound, and view as many as 26 tidewater and hanging glaciers. There is a good chance you’ll spot whales, seals, and eagles during the cruise.
Travel through Palmer in the Matanuska Valley, a lush farming region where cabbages can grow to weigh more than 70 pounds in the 24-hour daylight. Up over scenic Tahneta Pass with spectacular vistas of Matanuska Glacier. Travel along WRANGELL-ST. ELIAS NATIONAL PARK & PRESERVE, the largest park in the United States. The area boasts glaciers larger than the island of Manhattan, and is home to nine of the 16 highest peaks in North America. Overnight in Tok, the “Dog Sled Capital of the World.”
Join the Alaska Highway and follow along the Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge. Skirt the shores of Kluane Lake, once a meeting place for crews constructing the Alaska Highway. Behold spectacular vistas of the rugged mountains of Kluane National Park, home to 19,625-foot-high Mount Logan, Canada’s highest peak. The next two nights are in Whitehorse, capital of the Yukon and the territorial headquarters of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Day 5Whitehorse. Excursion To Skagway
Follow the Trail of ‘98 over the same mountains that thousands of determined gold seekers scaled on foot in the dead of winter while heading for the Klondike. From Carcross, your Tour Director will suggest an optional train trip on the narrow-gauge White Pass & Yukon Railway to Skagway. Otherwise, continue through the mountains by motorcoach to Skagway. Stroll the wooden sidewalks past charming false-front buildings and colorful saloons.NOTE: Operation of the White Pass & Yukon Railway to Skagway is subject to seasonal conditions.
Day 6Whitehorse–Dawson City
Head northwest through the town of Carmacks, once an important supply station for gold seekers on their way to the Klondike. A stop at the fiery Five Finger Rapids, a major obstacle to the hordes of fortune seekers that passed this way. Reach Dawson City, the center of excitement after the first gold strike in the Klondike in 1896, which led to the world’s largest gold rush. Tonight, enjoy the high-flying entertainment of DIAMOND TOOTH GERTIE’S SALOON, featuring ragtime music, can-can girls, and an old-fashioned casino.
Day 7Dawson City
A full day to soak up the exciting history of this Gold Rush town. Highlights on your morning tour include Bonanza Creek, site of Claim #1, where the first gold strike was made; Robert Service’s cabin; and a photo stop at the SS Keno, the last sternwheeler to run between Dawson and Whitehorse.
Day 8Dawson City–Fairbanks
A long day and well worth it, as the scenery is magnificent. Motor over the Top of the World Highway and re-enter the state of Alaska. Travel through the village of Chicken and west along the Alaska Highway. Make a stop at an authentic Alaska roadhouse before your early evening arrival in Fairbanks, Alaska’s second-largest city.
Morning sightseeing features the highlights of this historic Alaskan city and includes an up-close visit to the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. Board the STERNWHEELER RIVERBOAT Discovery III for a leisurely cruise on the Chena and Tanana Rivers. Listen as the ship’s guides discuss the wildlife, history, geology, and customs of the region.
Day 10Fairbanks–Denali National Park
Board the world-famous ALASKA RAILROAD for a memorable journey through untamed wilderness. Sit back in comfort and enjoy spectacular scenery through wide windows. Be sure to take advantage of the domed-roof car. Today’s ride ends in DENALI NATIONAL PARK. North America’s highest peak, 20,320-foot Mount McKinley dominates the park’s 6 million acres of glacial streams, river valleys, and expanses of multicolored tundra. The afternoon is free for exploring on your own.
Day 11Denali National Park
A free day for independent activities. A hike along the many wilderness trails might be good fun. Also take advantage of several optional outings, including a wildlife tour to seek out grizzly bears, caribou, moose, and Dall sheep; a raft trip down the Nenana River; or a helicopter ride over the park. Your Tour Director will have plenty of other suggestions.
Day 12Denali National Park–Anchorage
Continue your exploration of DENALI NATIONAL PARK as you head south toward Anchorage. Stop along the way at the IDITAROD VISITOR CENTER, home of the great dogsled race. After arrival in Anchorage, transfer to Seward and board your cruise ship this evening. (D)
Day 13Cruising: Gulf of Alaska
A relaxing day at sea provides time to explore the ship’s many amenities. Animal and marine life are abundant in this area and, with a little luck, you may spot a pod of mighty yet graceful killer whales. (B,L,D)
Day 14Glacier Bay National Park (Scenic Cruising)
This Biosphere Reserve and UNESCO World Heritage Site protects a unique ecosystem of plants and animals living in an ever-changing glacial landscape. Witness an amazing spectacle of thunder and flying spray as tremendous slabs of ice break off and “calve” into the sea, making for lasting memories. National Park rangers accompany the ship to add expert commentary to the day’s events. (B,L,D)
Nestled on the shore of America’s longest fjord, Haines enjoys a spectacular setting. You may choose to fill your day with a float trip through Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve, home to the largest annual gathering of bald eagles. Or, stop by the Sheldon Museum, art galleries, and local shops in town. (B,L,D)
No roads lead to Juneau. Accessible only by air and water, Juneau is located at the base of two towering mountains in the heart of Alaska’s Inside Passage, and is home to a rich Gold Rush history, Native culture, wildlife, and a wealth of natural wonders. Step ashore to shop for gold nuggets; visit the stately Governor’s Mansion; saunter through the swinging doors at the Red Dog Saloon, the city’s famous watering hole; or visit mighty Mendenhall Glacier, an impressive river of ice that is 12 miles long and 1.5 miles wide. (B,L,D)
Ketchikan clutches the shores of the Tongass Narrows, with many shops and houses built right out over the water in the town that calls itself the “Salmon Capital of the World.” Experience Native Alaska firsthand. Meet the spirits of the raven, whale, and eagle as you view the largest collection of totems in the world at Saxman Totem Park or Totem Bight State Historic Park. Or explore Creek Street, now home to contemporary art galleries and quaint boutiques. (B,L,D)
Day 18Inside Passage (Scenic Cruising)
The Inside Passage is one of the most scenic sea lanes in the world, and one of the few where deep-draft vessels can sail close to steep mountain walls. The scenery is unbelievable, with forests in a hundred shades of green and tumbling turquoise glaciers. The Inside Passage is a lifeline to the outside world. (B,L,D)
Disembark this morning and transfer to Vancouver International Airport for your return flight home. Please schedule homebound flights after Noon. (B)
Transportation: Day boat across Prince William Sound - journey on the Alaska Railroad from Fairbanks to Denali National Park; Holland America’s MS Statendam or MS Oosterdam; private, deluxe air-conditioned motorcoach while touring.