This particular adventure is a must when visiting Alaska. I know that Alaska is a popular cruise ship destination, but there are several daily glacier cruise tours out of Whittier and Seward. I was so excited to do this tour and I spent hours and hours researching my options. My fabulous travel buddy, dear cousin Tiv, didn’t need much convincing to hop on board either. We were both hedging our bets on this being the best part of the trip and the pressure was on to find a great tour company.
After reading through review after review on Trip Advisor, we settled on Kenai Fjords Tours out of the Seward port. They offered several cruise options to see glaciers and wildlife. Since we would be driving from Anchorage, the 10am departure fit our schedule the best. It took us about 2 1/2 hours to make the drive….even with a few stops along Turnagain Arm.
Here’s a funny side note about that drive. When I flew into Anchorage I was in awe of the grandeur of the snow capped mountains. I couldn’t get my face out of the window because I had never seen anything as awesome as this.
We were flying over an area and I noticed what looked like a road smack in the middle of a valley with huge mountains on either side. Every so often I could make out a car and I thought to myself how cool it would be to drive that road.
Well I’ll be darned if I didn’t drive that very road when we were going to Seward! It was spectacular. There were times when we were the only car on the road for upward of 20 mins. It was mind boggling for a girl from Atlanta where cars are packed in like ants.
Ok, back to the cruise. We arrived in Seward with time to spare and found the check-in area for our boat. After finishing the registration process it was time to head off to our boat. Seward harbor/port/marina was much bigger than I imagined. Lots of boats all around and we even saw a few dolphins swimming around the docks.
Once we were on the boat with a hundred or so other eager passengers, it was time to go see some glaciers. Our captain pointed out several sights along the way which included some wildlife. Our first sighting was a bald eagle and I would have photos of that if I had remembered to bring my camera. My Iphone couldn’t zoom enough, but I bet the guy next to me could with his 5ft camera lens! I sure do wish I had gotten his number during our excursion.
The staff on the boat were friendly and encouraged us to ask many questions. There was so much to take in that I didn’t really ask much, but I could have. Most of the time I just stared off in amazement of the natural beauty of this part of the globe. The water was a vivid green color because of whatever reason the guide said. LOL! I should have paid more attention. The rock formations were incredible and seeing all the different marine birds, dolphins, whales and seals in their natural habitat was serene. What I couldn’t imagine was how stunning the glaciers were.
I was seeing ice that was millions of years old! Hearing the calving of the glaciers and feeling the huge waves rock the boat from the enormous ice chunks hitting the sea was surreal. The glaciers seemed huge and extremely close to us, yet we were over 5 miles away.
As beautiful as it was to view these massive glaciers, it was unnerving to hear how much they have receded over the years. Some of these natural wonders will disappear within a few years. If you are an opponent of global warming, I’d challenge you to see its effects in person and deny there isn’t a warming trend happening now.
This was another highlight of our trip to Alaska and I’m so glad my cuz was up for the adventure. We had an amazing time and it was well worth every penny.