So what is it about Alaska that makes it such a spectacular experience? The glaciers, which are colossal bodies of ice are astounding and there are huge chunks of ice that break off and plunge into the icy depths of the ocean below. Taking an aerial view is highly recommended as you get an amazing glimpse of the endless rivers of ice below which can not be seen from the ground. Of course, one also gets to see the glaciers at close quarters from the cruise ship and this is a truly memorable experience.
Next, are the awe-inspiring mountains which can go as high as 20,000 feet and are located just a few miles away from the coast line, and they are a truly breath- taking sight. The Alaskan mountains seem mystical and other worldly as they rise to mind boggling heights. They provide a wonderful back to the already magnificent bays, rivers, islands and fjords. Another great crowd puller is the abundant wild animal in Alaska unique to this region: black bears, grizzly bears, Kodiaks and even polar bears-truly remarkable. However the chances of running into a polar bear are quite slim unless you throw in a trip on the side to the Arctic Circle, but there is a strong likelihood you'll bump into bald eagles and grizzlies. The majestic bald eagles, in fact, are among the many amazing things about Alaska. Watch awe-stuck as they swoop and dive for fish in the crystal clear depths of the bays and Alaskan rivers.
The aquatic life is in equal abundance. Spotting whales from the cruise ship decks and shorelines is quite common. Whale watching is an incredible way to see the giant mammals up close and such excursion are available in all major ports. Orcas or killer whales and dolphins and the varieties of Pacific Salmon (sockeye, pink, chum, king and chocho) are found in abundance in Alaska
A cruise scheduled in the early summer or fall is the best time to see Salmon. The rivers and streams will be filled with salmon as they return to their native waters to spawn causing the water bodies to be tightly packed with them.
But definitely the high point of cruising Alaska is easily the wide range of shore trips offered. You can benefit from these activities any time, before the cruise or after it and even during stops. There is so much to do, ranging from rafting down rivers which have been fed by glaciers or even dog sledding down the icy expanse. For a more serene experience there are trips to the bald eagle reserve, train rides to the Yukon Gold Rush country. There are inexhaustible options ranging from the ones that are easy on your pocket to the over priced. So what more reasons does one need to take a cruise into Alaska? Regardless of the cruise chosen, you are in for the experience of a lifetime.