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Juneau, Alaska Glacier exploration

Our most recommended Juneau, Alaska Glacier exploration

Juneau: Whale Watching Cruise and Mendenhall Glacier Tour

1. Juneau: Whale Watching Cruise and Mendenhall Glacier Tour

Seamlessly combine two of Juneau's favorite activities on this whale watching and Mendenhall Glacier tour. Marvel at majestic humpback whales in the company of a naturalist guide, and select from a range of trails to discover Mendenhall Glacier, the world's only drive-up glacier. Upon check-in, you will either be escorted to one of the shuttles for a narrated 25-minute drive to the glacier, or to the boat harbor for whale watching.  On the glacier section of the tour, choose to hike to Nugget Falls, take the Photo Point Trail, look for wildlife along the Steep Creek trail, or stroll up the easy walk to the Visitor Center. Take your time at the glacier with flexible shuttles back to town every 30 minutes. During your time on the water whale watching, listen to your naturalist guide explain the feeding habits of these magnificent creatures and identify the many other kinds of wildlife that share these waters.  Enjoy an enhanced experience on a custom-built boat with a warm heated cabin with large viewing windows, and two decks to hurry to when the captain slows after spotting the whales. There is a bathroom onboard and snacks are also provided.

Juneau City and Mendenhall Glacier

2. Juneau City and Mendenhall Glacier

Discover Alaska's capital city. Nestled between stunning mountain vistas and winding waterways, the modern city of Juneau is reminiscent of the old west. From the colorful port, to the busy capitol building, to the famous whale statue, this unique city has a surprise around every corner. The crowning point of the tour is Juneau's natural treasure, the Mendenhall Glacier. This is one of 38 glaciers flowing from the massive 1,500-square-mile Juneau Ice field.  At this stop you can explore this glacial wonder from a variety of perspectives like Nugget Creek Falls and Photo Point Trail, which winds along Mendenhall Lake to an unobstructed view of the glacier's face. Visit the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center for an elevated view of the glacier as well as interactive geological exhibits explaining glacier formation.

Ketchikan: Private Scenic Drive & George Inlet Fjords Cruise

3. Ketchikan: Private Scenic Drive & George Inlet Fjords Cruise

On this private, guided, half-day tour, embark on an adventure from Ketchikan through the Tongass Narrows as you travel to the George Inlet Fjords. Discover hidden gems of Alaskan culture on the drive through Saxman, then cruise through the rich scenery of the coastal fjords. Begin your tour in Ketchikan, where you'll meet your guide and explore the historic downtown area by van. Then, venture onwards to Saxman, which pays homage to Tlingit culture with its extensive totem pole park. Admire the breathtaking scenery of the Tongass Narrows coastline as you drive. Continue your adventure at the Beaver Falls Salmon Cannery. After visiting the historic cannery, relish the fresh air as you hike the rainforest trail to the Zodiac boat. Along the way, pause for Mahoney Falls Glacial Cirque's stunning views of snow-capped mountains and a 2000-foot waterfall. Next, your guide will provide a brief safety orientation of the Zodiac motorboats. Bundle up in rain gear, rubber boots, and a life jacket, then step into the four- or six-seater vessel. Follow your guide out to the George Inlet Fjords and marvel at the pristine scenery. As you cruise, keep watch for wildlife, including Sitka deer and black bears. Bald eagles may swoop to water for hunting, and in the water, you may be able to observe the salmon streams. After your cruise, return to the cannery for snacks and refreshments before heading back to Ketchikan.

Juneau: Mendenhall Glacier Adventure Tour

4. Juneau: Mendenhall Glacier Adventure Tour

Meet your guide at the cruise ship docks to start off this adventure. Hop in the van and listen to live commentary while driving through Juneau into the Tongass National Forest, the largest National Forest in the United States.  Once at the lake you'll have a meet and greet with the second guide who helps you put on the gear. You receive a rain jacket, rain pants, and rain boots. Along with everything needed to stay safe, including but not limited to paddling gloves, life jackets, helmets, trekking poles, and dry bags.  Your guides go over safety and paddling instructions before stepping into the canoe. This journey across the lake is a team effort, so it is not necessary to have paddling experience.  Mendenhall Lake is a glacier-fed lake that is surrounded by mountains and the famous Nugget Falls. The wind coming off the Mendenhall Glacier will officially welcome you to the Alaska wilderness.  Once the canoe is docked on the beach, there's time for a quick break before starting the hike to the glacier. During the hike, you can learn about the history of the area and listen to all the information your guides can share. Enjoy quiet moments to soak in the calmness of Alaska.  Once arriving on the rocky shore next to the glacier, follow your guides on an exploration trek around the rocky moraine to view the glacier up close.  The professional guides are in the wild every day and thrive on showing off what nature has to offer. One of the most unique aspects of the trip is that the glacial environment is in a constant state of movement and change, meaning no one tour is the same as the next. After your hike back to the canoes, be sure to soak in your last moments with the Mendenhall Glacier as the group paddles back to the shore.  Once arrived your guides will provide a hot beverage while you take off the gear. After a short drive back to the cruise ships, you will walk away with memories of Alaska that you will never forget.

Juneau: Mendenhall Glacier Lake Canoe Day Trip and Hike

5. Juneau: Mendenhall Glacier Lake Canoe Day Trip and Hike

See for yourself while this tour is one of the most popular adventure trips to the world-renowned Mendenhall Glacier. Paddle across the Mendenhall Glacier Lake and uncover an array of natural features on the edge of the receding Mendenhall Glacier on a guided hike.  Enjoy pickup and drop-off from a meeting point in downtown Juneau or from major hotels in the Mendenhall Valley. Hop aboard a comfortable and climate-controlled van for the transfer to the starting point of your canoe trip.  Begins on the shore of the Mendenhall Glacier Lake with paddle instructions from your guide. Load your gear into the large canoes and paddle together across the cool waters along the Mendenhall. Glide past Arctic Tern nesting grounds and observe the mist generated by Nugget Falls. Travel in 8-person or 12-person canoes skippered by 1 to 2 guides. As you approach the glacier, keep your eyes open for freshly calved icebergs and feel the cool breeze generated by the ice. navigate to the beach and land the canoe. Stop along the way to refuel with a hearty and tasty snack pack. After landing by the glacier, follow your guide across the rocky landscape. See crevasses filled with a deep blue color and an icefall at the toe of the glacier. Due to the glacier's state of constant change, not all features may be present or accessible, making each hike a unique experience.  Return to the canoes and enjoy paddling back with the wind at your back. Arrive on the shore, de-gear, and transfer back to downtown Juneau or your hotel in the Mendenhall Valley.

Juneau: City Highlights Tour

6. Juneau: City Highlights Tour

Begin the tour on a comfortable minibus for a scenic ride past the State Capitol Building, the Governor's House, and the Russian Orthodox Church. Make a stop at the Alaska State Museum where you will have the opportunity to immerse yourself in Alaskan culture and gain an appreciation for its rich and diverse history. Continue to Douglas Island for gorgeous views and photos of the Juneau coastline and Gastineau Channel. From there you will make a stop at the Macaulay Hatchery, commonly referred to as "DIPAC" by the locals. Learn about the salmon industry, observe various marine life, and watch the salmon run up the ladder, depending on the time of the year. Conclude your tour with a stop at the 50-acre Glacier Gardens Rainforest Adventure in the Tongass National Forest. Walk through this award-winning botanical garden and admire the flower towers as your guide fills you in on this region's varied ecosystem. Your tour will end near "Deckhand Dave's", the latest go-to food option in Juneau. Receive a voucher for a free serving of the signature rock-fish tacos. This new venue only serves locally caught fish in a fantastic creative way.

Juneau: Mendenhall Lake Canoe Tour

7. Juneau: Mendenhall Lake Canoe Tour

Come face to face with the famous Mendenhall Glacier on this once in a lifetime Alaskan adventure. Meet your guide at the Mt.Robert's Tram building near the cruise pier. Your guide will take you on a scenic tour by minivan to the Tongass National Forest where you can gaze upon the stunning Mendenhall Glacier. This small group canoe tour takes you past icebergs, waterfalls, and steep cliffs once carved by ice. Paddle up close to the face of this 3,000-year-old glacier, 13 miles long of ice, half a mile wide and up to 1,800 feet deep. This is Alaska's most visited glacier! The paddle time is around two hours from start to finish, providing plenty of time to take advantage of capturing the memory through scenic photos. You will be equipped with top quality gear including rain pants, rain jackets, waterproof boots, and everything else you will need to ensure your comfort and safety. You'll get a dry bag filled with bottled water and snacks, to be used to store personal belongings while canoeing. Please note this is canoe tour only and does not include hiking on a glacier. Throughout the day you are offered snacks and beverages.

Juneau: Whale Watching and Mendenhall Glacier Day Trip

8. Juneau: Whale Watching and Mendenhall Glacier Day Trip

This half-day adventure is a combination of the two of the best experiences in Juneau, Mendenhall Glacier by bus and an experience watching whales by boat. The tour starts with a scenic ride through the historic town of Juneau on the way to the Mendenhall Glacier. Here you will enjoy a 45 minute visit to explore the area on your own. A short walk from the bus and you will have picturesque views of the magnificent Mendenhall Glacier towering mountain peaks. As you explore on your own, you will have access to walking trails, waterfalls, and an indoor visitor’s center with glacier exhibits. During salmon spawning season, you may also catch a glimpse of a bear fishing for salmon on the elevated walkways. At the conclusion of the time at the glacier, your driver and guide will meet you to continue on to the whale watching harbor for the second part of this excursion. On the next adventure, you will participate in the search for whales and other animals living in the ocean waters around Juneau. You are guaranteed to see a whale as these waters are the highest populated area for humpback whales during the summer months. Your captain and crew will make sure you are comfortable for the exciting journey ahead. Your boat has a heated cabin, outdoor viewing decks, and a marine restroom onboard for your comfort on this journey. You will be surrounded by beautiful mountain ranges in the distance as your boat navigates the water. The crew will interpret the sites and animals you see along the way. Aside from whales, you might also see eagles, sea lions, seals, or other water wildlife while while on this adventure. For the safety of the animals, your crew will always keep a regulated distance from the animals while allowing you spectacular views of these creatures in the wild. This is an Alaskan adventure you cannot miss! Once the boat returns to the boat harbor, your driver will greet you and take you on another scenic ride back to downtown Juneau.

Juneau or Mendenhall Valley: Mendenhall Glacier Day Trip

9. Juneau or Mendenhall Valley: Mendenhall Glacier Day Trip

Discover the beauty of the Tongass National Forest on 4-mile hike and uncover an array of natural features on the edge of the receding Mendenhall Glacier on this guided hike. Enjoy pickup and drop-off from a meeting point in downtown Juneau or from major hotels in the Mendenhall Valley.  Hop aboard a comfortable and climate-controlled van for the transfer to the starting point of the hike. Begin with a hike through the Tongass National Forest, the largest temperate rainforest in the world. Walk through areas dominated by towering Sitka Spruce and Hemlock Trees. Stop along the way to refuel with a hearty and tasty snack pack. Watch as the wilderness trail becomes less defined as you follow your guide through the dense vegetation, around beaver ponds, and up rock scrambles. Emerge from the forest and approach the final ridge where the jagged face of the glacier bursts into view, and with its ice behind it. Continue along the edge of the glacier to uncover the unique moon-like landscape of bedrock that has been recently exposed by the receding glacier. See crevasses filled with a deep blue color and an icefall at the toe of the glacier. Due to the glacier's state of constant change, not all features may be present or accessible, making each hike a unique experience. Hike back on the West Glacier Trail and transfer back to your meeting point.

From Juneau: Fly-In Norris Glacier Hike & Packraft Trip

10. From Juneau: Fly-In Norris Glacier Hike & Packraft Trip

Experience 3 iconic Alaskan adventures—flightseeing, glacier hiking, and packrafting—all in just 5 hours! This is Juneau's first multi-sport adventure of this kind. Packrafting is one of the fastest-growing sports in Alaska. This Packraft adventure begins with boarding a six-passenger floatplane and taking off from the water. The scenic flight will head towards the mouth of the Taku Inlet, a gateway to the flowing glaciers of the Juneau icefield. Keep an eye out for mountain goats, black bears, and moose along the way. After landing on the Norris Glacier-fed lake, hike over the glacially carved terrain to a cove where your packraft awaits. From here, you will be outfitted in single-person packrafts and introduced to paddling techniques by your guides. Once you launch your packraft, your paddle to the glacier will take you past icebergs, all while taking in the stunning mountain and glacier landscapes around you. As you approach the glacier, prepare to beach your boat right on the Norris Glacier, your guide will assist you in getting out of your packraft and into micro-spikes. Explore the moonscape-like area of the glacier all by foot and get panoramic views of Norris and Taku glaciers. Look for crevasses, glacier pools, moulins, and other incredible ice features. Glacier features come and go throughout the season, just like the ebb and flow of our glaciers. Upon completion of your glacier hike, slide back into your packraft and paddle back to shore. Your floatplane awaits to take you back to Juneau.

Other Sightseeing Options in Juneau, Alaska

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What people are saying about Juneau, Alaska

It was one of my favorite adventures I’ve ever done! Canoeing across Mendenhall Lake was so exciting! We saw a Seal swimming. Beautiful scenery all around and floating icebergs! The hike to get to the glacier was a great! The guides Kelsie and Kelby were the best! Touching the actual glacier ice was awesome!

There be whales captain! and Beyond the end of Sept. Great crew - entertaining and informative. highly recommended (and 40% cheaper than cruise scheduled whale watching excursions)

Staff arranging and providing the tour are very nice. Places visited were well selected. We enjoyed the tour.

we had a problem with the meeting point, it was wrong in the voucher, we almost lost the excursion

Went right to the whales. Very knowledgeable. Fun times.