What to do for a day in Anchorage

Welcome to Cruise Critic! If you'd like to participate on our forums by joining in the conversation, please Register Now! Be sure to visit our FAMOUS Roll Call forums, where you can meet other cruisers sailing with you and share a tour or shore excursion and SAVE MONEY!

** Please post your recommendations ONLY in response to request...do not start a new thread. Thanks!
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts
BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
All times are GMT -4.
The time now is 05:00 PM.
#1
275 Posts
Joined Jan 2012
We end our cruisetour in Anchorage. Our plane doesn't depart until 11:45 PM. Hoping someone who's been through this can tell me what's available to get us through this long day. Thanks!
#2
Oreland, Pennsylvania
1,246 Posts
Joined Feb 2006
Good lord, where to start. Anchorage is loaded for tourists. The omnipresent trolley tour, any number of excursions and excursion companies, float planes, museums and don't miss the reindeer sausage carts. Try doing a google search for Anchorage tourist bureau.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
4 Star Mariner
Princess Platinum



#3
Glasgow, Scotland
436 Posts
Joined May 2008
We had an overnight in Anchorage after our Alaska cruise and found Anchorage to be a lovely city. We were lucky that the weather was glorious and that there was some sort of fair on with lots to see and do. We also found a park where local artists were selling their work. Lots of restaurants too. I'm sure you'll find plenty to occupy your time.
#4
Las Vegas
51 Posts
Joined Jun 2008
There is quite a bit to do if you have a day to spend in Anchorage. The Anchorage Museum is excellent with many exhibits regarding the Alaskan Native cultures. There is also the Anchorage Zoo which although it is a ways out of the downtown area, one can pick up a free zoo shuttle outside the log cabin visitors center in Downtown Anchorage. It is an excellent way to spend a few hours and although the Zoo is not huge, it has a wonderful layout and is worth a visit. If those are not to your liking, there are restaurants and shops galore in the downtown area. Try the crab salad sandwich at Humpy's,a cup of drinking chocolate at the Modern Dwellers Chocolate Lounge or a traditional meal at Gwennies Old Alaska.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
K2cruises
#5
Virginia Beach, VA
4,757 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Reserve a car way ahead of time, they don't keep many and they go fast. Enterprise has a site within walking distance to Capt Cook Hotel (downtown). https://maps.google.com/maps?ie=UTF-...&ved=0CLABELYD

Go to Snow City Cafe for a great filling breakfast. http://www.snowcitycafe.com/

Pick up the car and drive towards Seward along Turnigan Arm. Stop at the overlooks to see the beautiful views. Look up ahead of time what time the Bore Tide will be for your date, but plan to be in place at least 30 -60 minutes ahead. http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/units/ch...etidesched.pdf We watched from Beluga Point. It is amazing and you can read more about it here: http://www.alaska.org/advice/alaska-bore-tide

If you have time, drive down to Seward for a nice lunch, then head back. The snow on the mountains on the drive down will be much different than on the way back where the southern exposure will have melted a lot of it. There are some cute shops and restaurants in Seward.

If you're taking wine on the ship, buy it at a wine store, they don't sell at the grocery store.

It will be a full day, but don't miss the bore tide. That's my favorite memory of our drive.

Dinner at Humpy's or other local restaurant after turning in your car.
#6
Syracuse, New York
50,228 Posts
Joined May 2000
Originally posted by 5326jan
Reserve a car way ahead of time, they don't keep many and they go fast. Enterprise has a site within walking distance to Capt Cook Hotel (downtown). https://maps.google.com/maps?ie=UTF-...&ved=0CLABELYD

Go to Snow City Cafe for a great filling breakfast. http://www.snowcitycafe.com/

Pick up the car and drive towards Seward along Turnigan Arm. Stop at the overlooks to see the beautiful views. Look up ahead of time what time the Bore Tide will be for your date, but plan to be in place at least 30 -60 minutes ahead. http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/units/ch...etidesched.pdf We watched from Beluga Point. It is amazing and you can read more about it here: http://www.alaska.org/advice/alaska-bore-tide

If you have time, drive down to Seward for a nice lunch, then head back. The snow on the mountains on the drive down will be much different than on the way back where the southern exposure will have melted a lot of it. There are some cute shops and restaurants in Seward.

If you're taking wine on the ship, buy it at a wine store, they don't sell at the grocery store.

It will be a full day, but don't miss the bore tide. That's my favorite memory of our drive.

Dinner at Humpy's or other local restaurant after turning in your car.
There are a lot of rental car options in Anchorage. Bore tides are RARE, so I would not suggest, you spend any time, "waiting" for something not likely to happen, you need a BIG negative tide. Not that exciting overall. I also would never suggest a "day trip" back and forth Seward, for "lunch". You need 6 hours on the road, with plenty of great restaurants closer.

There is NO snow, unless you are going early season.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
Happy Alaska travels

[email protected]
#7
Syracuse, New York
50,228 Posts
Joined May 2000
Originally posted by jr8934
We end our cruisetour in Anchorage. Our plane doesn't depart until 11:45 PM. Hoping someone who's been through this can tell me what's available to get us through this long day. Thanks!
There is plenty to see and do, depends on you. www.anchorage.net

I also suggest a Prince William Sound boat tour, which is just excellent, and a scenic highlight. Can do this with a rental car, with easy return, and driving yourself to the airport, otherwise, you have issues with your luggage. If you have an early start, you can enjoy the Arm, and make a stop at the Portage glacier visitor center- if of interest.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
Happy Alaska travels

[email protected]
#8
Southern California
4,528 Posts
Joined May 2006
We enjoyed walking the Tony Knowles Trail in Anchorage. Very easy to access and incredibly scenic. And we saw a moose along the way which was a thrill. Many people also rent bikes and ride the trail as well.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
Grand Princess Alaska July 20-30, 2016 * Ruby Princess Coastal September 17-21, 2015 * Crown Princess Spring Break Noro Cruise March 28-April 4, 2015 * Golden Princess Thanksgiving November 26-30, 2014 * Star Princess Alaska August 8-19, 2014 * Island Princess May 16-21, 2014 * Sapphire Princess March 31-April 3, 2014 * Sapphire Princess January 6-9, 2014 * Golden Princess Pacific Coast Thanksgiving November 27 - November 30, 2013 * Grand Princess Alaska August 8- August 18, 2013 * HAL Amsterdam Alaska July 27 - August 10, 2012 * Carnival Spirit Mexican Riviera March 30-April 8, 2012 * Caribbean Princess Canada/New England July 19 - July 28, 2011 * Golden Princess Hawaii December 22, 2010-January 5, 2011 * Sea Princess Alaska July 31-August 10, 2010 * Sapphire Princess Mexican Riviera March 27-April 3, 2010 * Golden Princess Hawaii December 20, 2009 -January 3, 2010 * Diamond Princess B2B Alaska June 20 - July 4, 2009 *NCL Star Mexican Riviera April 11-18, 2009 * Golden Princess Hawaii December 24, 2008-January 7, 2009 * RCCL Monarch of the Seas Pacific July 28-31, 2008 * Golden Princess Mexico April 12-19, 2008 * Diamond Princess Hawaii Dec 18, 2007-Jan 2, 2008 * Dawn Princess Alaska July 20-30, 2007 * RCCL Vision of the Seas Mexico November 19-26,2006 * NCL Star Alaska August 13-20, 2006 * Carnival Cruise Baja April 14-17, 2006 * DCL Western Cruise February 11-18, 2006 * DCL Cruise West Coast July 23-30, 2005
#9
107,168 Posts
Joined Jul 2001
I agree about renting a car.

That way you have some place to store your luggage while you drive around.

Check what time you need to return the car and if it can be returned at the airport.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
Cruising is a wonderful way to enjoy retirement!
Stopped counting a few years ago -- have done over 140 cruises.
#10
Syracuse, New York
50,228 Posts
Joined May 2000
They will need to be at the airport at 9:45p, at the latest.

They may find better deals doing a round trip Anchorage airport rental. I know some downtown pick ups, with airport drop offs have drop fees. Best to compare and see what is available for that particular day.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
Happy Alaska travels

[email protected]
#11
Anchorage, Alaska
3,182 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Originally posted by 5326jan
Pick up the car and drive towards Seward along Turnigan Arm. Stop at the overlooks to see the beautiful views. Look up ahead of time what time the Bore Tide will be for your date, but plan to be in place at least 30 -60 minutes ahead. http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/units/ch...etidesched.pdf We watched from Beluga Point. It is amazing and you can read more about it here: http://www.alaska.org/advice/alaska-bore-tide.
The bore tide potential is high and is noted on the link you provided for when they are going to be here. The better place to watch is Bird Point and although there is no guarantee that it will occur it’s scheduled based on the tides to be going past this area about 4pm when they are here. I go down several times each summer to watch the paddle boarders ride the wave.

There have also been some good sightings of sheep along the cliffs this spring in the same area. There are also occasional sightings of beluga whales but I didn’t see any last year.
#12
Virginia Beach, VA
4,757 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by Glaciers
The bore tide potential is high and is noted on the link you provided for when they are going to be here. The better place to watch is Bird Point and although there is no guarantee that it will occur it’s scheduled based on the tides to be going past this area about 4pm when they are here. I go down several times each summer to watch the paddle boarders ride the wave.

There have also been some good sightings of sheep along the cliffs this spring in the same area. There are also occasional sightings of beluga whales but I didn’t see any last year.
Thanks for the comment. We thought the Bore Tide was awesome. Turnigan Arm is a fascinating place and we enjoyed our drive to Seward. We did see snow on the Mountains heading south, but none coming back. That was in July of 2010. We also got to see the sheep along the drive.

Budget Queen, I am relating MY experience to the best of my abilities. I hope that the OP can take ALL the information that is posted and select a plan that works for them.
#13
Boise, Idaho
891 Posts
Joined Jul 2006
If you are a baseball fan, there is a very nice small baseball stadium that has an independent college summer league. We spent a lovely afternoon watching some excellent ball....the pro-scouts were there, so was fun to watch them in action also.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature


Travel blog: www.zest4travel.wordpress.com

Celebrity Eclipse Norway 8/26/17
Celebrity Solstice Alaska 8/4/17
Celebrity Equinox Caribbean 3/17
Celebrity Eclipse Baltic 7/16
Celebrity Millennium Alaska 5/16
Celebrity Solstice Alaska 7/15
Celebrity Infinity Iceland/Norway 7/14
Princess Grand Alaska 7/13
Holland America Westerdam Alaska 5/13
Holland America Zuiderdam Alaska 7/12
Holland America Westerdam Caribbean 3/12
Holland America Amsterdam 14 day Alaska 7/11
Celebrity Millennium Alaska 7/10
Holland America Eurodam N. Europe 6/09
Princess Golden Alaska 7/08
Celebrity Summit Alaska 7/07
Celebrity Summit Alaska 7/06
#14
Mississippi
12 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
Your baggage may be a problem. When I was there in 2000 there was no way to check or store my baggage. The airline counter didn't open until about two hours before the flight. There was a baggage holding area, but it was full and they would not take any more. I think there was a charge per item, too.
Moose antlers were really expensive to store!
Most of the day was wasted sitting on baggage. There have been renovations since then, so it might not be as big a problem. Have a great cruise, Alaska is wonderful.