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Alaska - A Frozen Wonderland of Wildlife, Water and Glaciers
by Roy Witman © 2008

The first explorers who trekked through Alaska discovered this was no frozen wasteland. They quickly saw the beauty, awe and wonder that lie in all Alaska has to offer. From watching adorable puffins glide through the water at marine research facilities to feeling the astonishing power of standing on a glacial expanse, you'll instantly know why Alaska has become such a popular vacation destination.

Many still believe Alaska is always dark and frigid,far from it! With bright, sunny skies, many areas of Alaska reach temperatures of 80 degrees Fahrenheit during summer months. Regardless of the time of year you visit, you'll find amazing excursions sure to deliver fond memories for years to come.

Whether you cruise on Princess Cruise Line, Holland America or others, you'll find plenty to do during your visit. Just a sampling of the excursions include:

Gold Mines

Part of the original gold rush, Alaska is a prime location for mining gold. Visit past and present mines, and try your luck to see if you strike it rich! Narrated tours are also available.


Helicopter tours, hiking tours and heli-hike tours are available and get you up close and personal with some of the most expansive glaciers in Alaska. Across miles of frozen ground, you'll visit ice bridges, ice pools, penguins, sea lions, puffins and other species. Trekking across mountain peaks and valleys, you'll truly fall in love with the grandeur of the Alaskan tundra, as your tour guide points out all the highlights.

Wildlife Watching

See many of Alaska's best-loved creatures right before your eyes when you opt for a wildlife excursion. Jeep safaris, jet boat tours, horseback adventures and more put you in the heart of wild Alaska where you can see moose, bear (both black and grizzly), otters, beavers and the beloved eagle. Much of this state is still untouched, leaving the animals with plenty of natural habitats. Be sure to bring your camera!

Water Sports

Sport fishing at its finest is available during your Alaskan cruise. At the hands of an experienced guide, novice and experienced fishermen can reel in red salmon, rainbow trout and other local favorites. Kayaking, fly-fishing, whitewater rafting and more are also available for those who like to be in the middle of all the action.

It's always a good idea to pre-book your excursions prior to arriving onboard, as the most popular activities will fill up fast. Princess, Holland America and most other cruise lines allow pre- booking. Check with your travel agent for details.

A cruise in and of itself is an adventure, but when you add several exciting excursions to your vacation plans, you truly end up with a fun-filled vacation everybody will love!

Read more about the Princess Cruises.
Read more about the Holland America Cruise Line.
Read more about Alaska Cruises.