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5 Reasons to Visit Glacier Bay National Park On Your Alaskan Cruise

Updated: Feb 20

A view of the Glacier bay national park

With its vast wilderness and rugged landscapes, Alaska offers an unparalleled adventure for travelers seeking to immerse themselves in "The Last Frontier." When it comes to exploring the beauty of this majestic state, an Alaskan cruise that includes a scenic day of sailing in Glacier Bay National Park is an experience one should not miss.

Glacier Bay National Park is undoubtedly a highlight of an Alaskan cruise voyage. Still, not all cruise itineraries include a visit to the park. Recently, I boarded a cruise to Alaska and was lucky enough to enjoy time in Glacier Bay National Park. It was one of my favorite days on the cruise. National park rangers board the vessel to share informative lectures about the park, stamp national park passports, and spend time answering the many questions about the area.

Woman sightseeing in an Alaskan cruise


Every Alaskan cruise vacation should include a scenic day of cruising in Glacier Bay National Park, and here is why.


Reason #1 - There are breathtaking glaciers to view

A view of the glacier bay national park in an alaskan cruise

Glacier Bay National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a natural wonder spanning over 3.3 million acres. There is no road into the park; therefore, one must enter via cruise ship, boat, or plane. As you sail toward the glacial area, you will begin to notice the chunks of glistening blue ice in the water. As the ship nears the glacier, the mesmerizing colors of blue and green will amaze you. Numerous glaciers are found within the park, but most cruise ships visit Margerie Glacier and Lamplugh Glacier. The real highlight is witnessing the dramatic calving of a glacier as massive chunks of ice break off and crash into the water, leaving you in awe of nature's might and beauty.

Reason #2 - Abundant Wildlife Viewing

Cruising through Glacier Bay unveils a world teeming with diverse wildlife. Spot harbor seals floating on ice floes. For bird lovers, several varieties of puffins, kittiwakes, and arctic terns nest along the shorelines entering the bay. Porpoises and humpback whales are often viewed in the Icy Strait. Brown bears are frequently sighted along the shore as the ship approaches Margerie Glacier.

Reason #3 - Photograph Unspoiled Scenery

View of Glacier bay national park in an Alaskan Cruise

Sailing through the straits offers plenty of opportunity to photograph the sun glistening over the water and the towering mountains in the distance. As we approached the bay, I pulled up a chair on my stateroom balcony and prepared to spend the day snapping the best photos possible. The goal? A calving glacier - if I was lucky. The captain rotated the ship periodically, providing chances to take pictures from the port and starboard sides of the ship. Be prepared to photograph rain or shine.

Reason #4 - Educational Treasure Trove for Inquisitive Travelers

Scenic view of glacier bay national park with an alaskan cruise

One of the highlights of this journey is the opportunity to interact with the park rangers who join the cruise. They share valuable insights about the park's natural wonders, wildlife, and conservation efforts. Through educational presentations, interactive programs, and guided hikes, travelers deepen their understanding of Glacier Bay's unique flora and fauna, making it more exciting for curious nature enthusiasts and anyone seeking to learn more about this extraordinary environment.

Reason #5 - Learn more about the Cultural and Historical Significance of the park

Glacier bay national park

Glacier Bay is rich in cultural and historical significance. The area has been home to the Huna Tlingit people for thousands of years, who deeply connect to the land and its resources. You'll have an opportunity to learn about their traditions, history, and the importance of preserving this remarkable environment for future generations.

You'll also learn about the rich history formed by early European explorers, adventurers, and naturalists who formed lasting legacies in the park area. Captain George Vancouver, John Muir, and ecologist William Cooper are some of the most notable individuals.

A visit to Glacier Bay National Park will send you home with fantastic photographs and a deeper appreciation for nature. Your visit also supports conservation efforts to protect this fragile ecosystem for future generations.

Ready to turn your dream luxury vacation into a reality? Let me help you embark on the Alaskan cruise of a lifetime, complete with an unforgettable stop in Glacier Bay National Park. Don't wait any longer—contact me and start planning your dream luxury cruise vacation!


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