Alaska Excursions--post your reviews here!

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by ClaireinTN, May 18, 2011.

  1. meajuly5

    meajuly5 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2012
    Messages:
    742
    Thanks so much. I had booked the shorter one but couldn't resist the additionAl sites. Too close to not see it for myself. Did you do the train combo? I appreciate the info!
     
  2. Avatar

    Google AdSense Guest Advertisement


    to hide this advert.
  3. RedSox68

    RedSox68 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2009
    Messages:
    2,704
    Yes -- the combo that included lunch. We did the longest tour that included everything that the ship's excursion included. We had a gorgeous day, the train was amazing (I think it was a 3-hour ride). You go up along mountain passes and you will see gorges, etc. My husband spent a lot of time out on the platforms. The train cars are all wood and look like original cars. There is a bathroom in each one and a water station. I know there is the reverse tour also that starts on the bus and ends with the train ride down, but I had read that the train ride up was better.

    We, unfortunately, had a woman on our excursion who was very high maintenance and caused us some problems with constant stops and complaining, but our tour guide had a tremendous amount of patience. We did manage to see everything and I didn't feel slighted. They then drop you off into town to shop on your own. I just loved how easy it was to walk back to the ship. We also did the Red Onion tour once we got back in town. It was like $5.00/pp.
     
  4. meajuly5

    meajuly5 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2012
    Messages:
    742
    Oh boy! Hopefully we won't be those people! Looking forward to it
     
  5. RedSox68

    RedSox68 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2009
    Messages:
    2,704
    No no -- we were all under the consensus that she should not have been on that excursion alone. She was very high strung about time and not making it to certain spots by a certain time. There were other unfortunate issues with her also that are left better unsaid :crazy2:

    But like I said, our tour guide as AMAZING and took very good care of all of us and we have nothing but good memories all around.
     
  6. Donna3271

    Donna3271 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2008
    Messages:
    1,326
    Thats great! I was figuring out if I should book separately, or through Disney. The price difference was $30... but if the Disney prices include tax, then it is virtually the same.
     
  7. Jillscabanastories

    Jillscabanastories Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2013
    Messages:
    71
    In Skagway, we rode the White Pass railroad and saw the Lionsville trail camp.

    In Juneau we saw Mendenhall and Glacier Gardens on one trip, on another we did the Whale watching in Auke Bay, absolutely fantastic

    In Sitka, we did the sea Otter quest, and saw the Russian Orthodox church.

    In Ketchikan we went to the Tlingit village, very unique.

    Alaska is an absolutely wonderful trip.
     
  8. Everlymouse

    Everlymouse Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2013
    Messages:
    17
    Hi --
    So based on a lot of the reviews I booked the helicopter / dog sledding excursion. People have raved about it and my son really wants to do it too. I have to admit -- I'm afraid of the helicopter ride. Can anyone tell me what it's like (no detail too small). Any tips? I'm hoping the more I know about it, the better I can mentally prepare.

    Thanks so much!!!
     
  9. topsy

    topsy Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Messages:
    364
    Harv & Marv's Whale Watching -

    We are booked on to the 9.50am whale watching excursion and would like to see a little bit of Juneau before getting back on the ship. However, All Aboard is at 4.30pm and by the sounds of it our excursion (including a short stop at the Mendenhall Glacier) should finish around 2.30/2.45pm.

    Does anyone have experience of this excursion and the timings? How much time does it take to get back to the ship if dropped off in town? Did you have enough time to see a bit of Juneau?

    Thanks!
     
  10. peachygreen

    peachygreen DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,308
    Does anyone have any experience or review of the Whales and Science Adventure? Disney offers it though their port adventures but I would consider trying to book it privately as my youngest daughter would be shy of the required age per Disney. My oldest daughter would love the science details part of the excursion and my youngest would enjoy just watching the animals.

    http://www.stepintoalaska.com/tour_shore_excursion_details.cfm?tourid=researchexploration
     
  11. peachygreen

    peachygreen DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,308
    Never mind - I just realized I have to book it through Disney and since my youngest it too young it won't work.
     
  12. Magic3forme

    Magic3forme Grand Slam club members

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Messages:
    3,079
    we just got back from the May 27th Alaska sailing...

    We did Harv & Marvs. Captain Steve was awesome! We were picked up at the dock at 7 and taken to their docks. Right in the bay was a whale. :)

    it was a great day to see wildlife... we saw 7 (12+ sightings and a bunch of the tales.) We also saw a few bald eagles and a bunch of sea lions.

    We highly recommend this tour!! it was worth every penny for us!!

    at the end we were dropped off in town and had lunch at Tracys Crab shack. we saw a bunch of the cruise staff there too.
     
  13. Never to old

    Never to old DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2009
    Messages:
    724
    Any other tips you want to share? We sail July 29.
     
  14. OrcaPotter

    OrcaPotter Lucky to be local to the Mouse

    Joined:
    May 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,044
    Have to return the love to this thread; everything I booked was result from recommendations here.

    Skagway: Chillkoot Charters & Tours Bus & Rail Excursion with 15 minute Dog Kart Ride
    We took the train up and the bus down. Our pick-up time was 7:30 AM and a driver promptly scooped us up and took us to the train depot. From there, we met our guide for the day (Mike) who secured the back car for us. We were the only Disney folks; everyone else was from the Holland America or Princess ships, so it was adults only! Not that it was an adult-only excursion, it just worked out that way. The train rolled out at 8 AM and almost immediately the views were spectacular. Sit on the left side of the car for the most views! We could also pop out to the back platform; it was pretty darn cold as we climbed further up into the mountains, though, so I did not stay out there very long. Some guys with impressive cameras camped out there, though. It was about a 1.5 hour trip to the Canadian border, where they checked our passports and waved us on to the buses. Unlike the major cruise excursions that use the huge charter buses, we had a smaller 20 or so passenger bus (each seat was full). From there, Mike took us up into the Yukon, stopping at a few places for photos.
    Note: Your guide takes cues off of you. Our fellow passengers liked to just pop out, snap some photos, then pop back on the bus. By the time we would climb off the bus, people were ready to get back on. My parents and I wanted to take in the sights (being from Florida, it was a truly amazing experience) so we felt a little rushed when we would be the last people standing and our guide waiting on the bus with everyone else. Folks would give us looks by the time we got back on. You're on vacation, folks! Enjoy it!​
    Every moment was filled with amazing cinematic vistas you only seem to see in movies. However, by the time we made it to the little (tourist) stop (Caribou Crossing) for lunch, we were starved--so make sure you pack yourselves snacks. Caribou Crossing is a cute little tourist trap with a good lunch. Only, because we booked the 15 minute dog kart ride, we only had 30 minutes to eat before we had to be out there for our ride. (The donuts are amazing, BTW.) The karts are not sleds, but look like go-karts with giant wheels that sit about 4 people comfortably. The dogs were excited! Once hitched, we were off! It was truly an adventure I was glad I booked. I took photos and video, then put the camera away to save battery life. Well, I wish I hadn't, because on the stretch back to camp, a baby bear ran across the track! We were filled with both awe and terror because the dogs began to go after it! But the dog musher had some amazing control and managed to convince them not to. After the ride, we said hello to all the adorable puppies, the new baby donkey, some pigs and goats, briefly walked through a neat little taxidermy museum---only to rush back to the bus promptly at 1:05 when we were told to return. Well, no surprise, our group was sitting there glaring at us as if we had just caused the cruise ships to leave early. The people you're with, of course, is under no control of the tour company, so don't let my comments about our fellow passengers sway you one way or another. The bus ride back to Skagway included many stops and 2 wildlife sightings (a coyote and eagle), and we were back in town by 3:30. All-aboard was 7:30, so we had plenty of time to explore the little shops before heading back to the ship in time for main seating. There was a bus service for $2/person to take you from town back to the port.

    I highly recommend this company and this excursion!

    Juneau: Rum Runner Charters 2.5 Whale Watching Excursion
    I originally booked this excursion with Captain Chris for 7 AM, however, he called me before I left home to ask if it were possible to move it to 11 AM. All-aboard is 4:30 in Juneau, so we still had time, but it did not leave much room at all to do much of anything after. We appreciated having more time in the morning, though, to grab breakfast in Triton's. The bus service Capt. Chris uses was unfortunately at the wrong dock, so we waited about 10 minutes before that was corrected. It was only the 3 of us on this tour, so we had the bus all to ourselves and the driver explained many of the landmarks on the way to Auke Bay. Capt. Chris and his admiral, Moon Dog (a yellow lab), greeted us at the pier. He escorted us down to his boat where we met his skipper and given the lo-down on the boat and such. From there, we were off, and almost right away Capt. Chris spotted a whale. However, this whale kept moving all over the bay, so after a while we headed off to another hot spot. Well! We joined 2 or 3 other whale watching vessels filled with people to see a mother and baby humpback! And the baby kept breaching (jumping) out of the water! It was AMAZING! Moon Dog kept barking, which made the baby curious and he kept leaping out of the water to get a good look at the dog. Which meant the whales were super close to us! After about 20 minutes of amazing, we headed off down to a buoy to see a ton of Stellar Sea Lions, then finally to an island to see an entire flock of Bald Eagles as Captain Chris tossed out pieces of fish to get them to come close and swarm the boat! I got some amazing photos as result. Once back at the dock, we were escorted back to our bus. We could have stopped at Mendenhal Glacier, but since we were short on time, we just went back to the city center and had a quick bite at the Red Dog Saloon (try the clam chowder!) before poking into a shop or two and grabbing one of the last free shuttle back to the port.

    I would highly recommend Rum Runner! Totally private charter for less money than Harv & Marv.
     
  15. Disneynut64

    Disneynut64 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2006
    Messages:
    555
    WoW!!!! So much info :) has anyone done a salmon fishing trip?? looking for info. Also anyone that recently took any of the trips recommended for some update info would be greatly appreciated.
     
  16. jenna7394

    jenna7394 Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2013
    Messages:
    30
    We did the salmon fishing and we ended up having a good time. I have to admit that it wasn't my favorite excursion (we zip lined in Skagway and did the helicopter to the dog sled and ice field in Juneau) but it was good. It was rainy and cold but our captain, Kyle, was very nice and tried to get us some fish. We ended up catching 3 but could only keep 2 due to the size requirement on King salmon. I now have several packages of frozen salmon in my freezer that we caught! Yay! We have 2 boys that are 12 and 14 and they seemed to enjoy the excursion as they had never really fished before. The things that would have made the trip better are: warmer weather and no rain (I know we have no control over that, especially in Ketchikan!), and going later in the season when the salmon are more plentiful. There were 38 people on our tour that went out on about 8 boats and only 2 boats caught any salmon. I really think we would have had more luck later in the summer. We did see a whale bubble feeding and saw a lot of eagles. The scenery is beautiful out there!

    I hope you have a wonderful time! Let us know what you decide on and how it went!

    Jenna
     
  17. Disneynut64

    Disneynut64 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2006
    Messages:
    555
    What company did you use for salmon fishing did you go through DCL? Also who did you use for other excursions??
     
  18. tink too

    tink too DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    May 27, 2005
    Messages:
    4,771
    OrcaPotter - thanks for the reviews. :thumbsup2 We're doing the same tours in Skagway and Juneau - my DD can't wait to meet Moon Dog!

    Jenna7394 - Also interested in who you booked your salmon fishing trip with as my DH wants to do that in Ketchikan (he's currently booked with DCL for the Knudson Cove excursion).
     
  19. Vegam060

    Vegam060 Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2013
    Messages:
    19
    Whats the price of the chillkoot charter bus and rail with dog kart ride excursion
     
  20. tink too

    tink too DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    May 27, 2005
    Messages:
    4,771
    $208 for adults and $148 for children. :)
     
  21. Shelebeen

    Shelebeen DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2005
    Messages:
    735

    What town is Tracys Crab shack in? somewhere I want to go!
     

Share This Page