Mendenhall Glacier bus service

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#2
Alberta, Canada
333 Posts
Joined Apr 2008
Originally posted by sxmnov08
Does anyone know how often the bus runs and where is the stop located when getting off the NCL Pearl in Juneau?

From the website:

MGT’s BLUE GLACIER EXPRESS
$16 per person roundtrip
This is our no frills experience offering direct transportation 14 miles from downtown to the Mendenhall Glacier. Transportation run every 30 minutes beginning at 9:00am till 6:00pm on most days. Let our Bright Blue Bus take you out to the “Blue Ice Cube.”

the stop is supposed to be right off the docks, near the "thundering birds totem"
#3
Alberta, Canada
333 Posts
Joined Apr 2008
Originally posted by NSgal
the stop is supposed to be right off the docks, near the "thundering birds totem"
Sorry, this is the bus stop for Ketchikan, I believe. The info on the bus is correct though
#6
601 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
No need to pre-register for a shore excursion (extra $$) to see Mendenhall Glacier. Get off the Ship...look for the blue bus. That is all you have to do.... and it run continuously...so stay at the visitor center as long as you like...well, at least until you have to leave to get back to the boat before departure.
#7
NJ
38 Posts
Joined Apr 2007
Originally posted by sxmnov08
Does anyone know how often the bus runs and where is the stop located when getting off the NCL Pearl in Juneau?
We cruised on NCL Pearl last month - it docked at AJ dock that is about 1 mile (or less) from the main dock (where Mt. Robert Tramway is located).

All the shuttle buses that run to Mendenhall Glacier are from the main dock. Here is how we did our Mendenhall Glacier tour - after get off the ship, we first took a shuttle bus from AJ dock to the main dock, then we purchased a round-trip ticket ($16 pp) from the vendor (you see them when you get off the shuttle bus from AJ dock). We then waited for the Glacier shuttle bus in front of the information center (there is a sign and you will see many people are waiting for buses there). The bus we took was the white school bus run by "Juneau Tours". They run every 30 minutes until 6pm.

The glacier is beautiful.....
#8
5,606 Posts
Joined Nov 2005
Originally posted by Wylie Coyote
........ Get off the Ship...look for the blue bus. .......
Originally posted by new_cruiser_22
...... The bus we took was the white school bus run by "Juneau Tours"...........
Whichever company you book will most likely try to sell you a round trip ticket. We unknowingly did that the first time we went out to Mendenhall Glacier. Then we were stuck having to wait around for a bus from the same company for the return trip.

It was a very long wait because their bus had problems that day and did not show up at its scheduled time. Other buses came and went half-empty, but they would not accept our ticket, saying it was only good for the company that sold it to us. By the time our bus eventually showed up, there was a very long line for it so it was packed full with people needing to stand in the aisle on the trip back.

That day we learned that the thing to do is to buy a one-way ticket only. Then whenever we are ready to leave, we can jump on any bus that comes along and don't need to be concerned about which company it is. We just pay the driver the one way fare when we board.
#9
32 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
Originally posted by fleckle
That day we learned that the thing to do is to buy a one-way ticket only. Then whenever we are ready to leave, we can jump on any bus that comes along and don't need to be concerned about which company it is. We just pay the driver the one way fare when we board.
So there is a one-way fare for the "blue bus" to Mendenall then? Their website only quotes round trip. Thanks.
#10
Plainfield, Indiana, USA
2,433 Posts
Joined Apr 2003
Does anyone know if there's a child price? Or just 16 round trip for whomever.

I'd sort of like to pay the round trip price so I can use my credit card and not have to carry the extra cash to pay the driver.

Thanks for the info.
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#11
63 Posts
Joined Nov 2010
Originally posted by Cheryl H
Does anyone know if there's a child price? Or just 16 round trip for whomever.

I'd sort of like to pay the round trip price so I can use my credit card and not have to carry the extra cash to pay the driver.

Thanks for the info.
Have you been on the cruise yet? We leave August 2. I will be traveling with my two young children and would like to be prepared before getting in line.
#12
Plainfield, Indiana, USA
2,433 Posts
Joined Apr 2003
Originally posted by hnsummers
Have you been on the cruise yet? We leave August 2. I will be traveling with my two young children and would like to be prepared before getting in line.
Yes, we are back. Here's my experience. We were waiting around for our first tour to go so I thought I'd ask about the blue shuttle bus location for later in the day. So I asked the RCCL staff member. He was clueless and asked me if I was talking about an independant tour? I said yes. He seemed shocked that I would even ask such a question to him. But another tour guide over heard my question and said they had a booth nearby.

So after our gold mine tour, we came back and had lunch at the TAKU building (Twisted Fish Restaurant). Very good food by the way. So then we noticed two or three groupings of small booths. So I asked one where the blue MGT bus booth was and said that we were wanting to shuttle over to Mendenhall. Well, whoever this gal was, she was selling tickets for the white shuttle bus. And she said that our son (age 6) would be free. So yes, indeed we were able to use our charge charge for 2 adult shuttle tickets for the white bus.

We boarded the white bus and our driver was very friendly and chatted the whole way. We visited Mendenhall and walked to the falls. Then we walked back to the bus loading tent. Here's where I wished we would have just paid one-way because right there was a blue MGT shuttle bus. But we had to wait around for the white bus to get us. It was probably 15 or 20 minutes maybe. We could have got right on the blue bus and paid cash.

But all in all, it turned out fine. I think the white bus was labeled Juneau Tours, but I can't remember for sure. But they were the same price as MGT (16 round trip per person).

Just FYI about the path to the falls at Mendenhall. We took the path, and pretty soon it broke into two paths and there was a sign that said both paths lead to the falls. So we took the left one. It was sort of a sandy beach path. We crossed a couple tiny brooks, but we really didn't get our feet wet. So coming back we decided we'd take the other path back. It was nice and newly maintained and a nicer walk if a person needs a more even path (strollers, canes, etc). However, I think it might have been a tad longer to go that path. It was probably an hour to walk to the falls and back counting the time we took pictures at the falls. A very nice easy walk either way. Just one path looked a little smoother than the other.

p.s. there was a restroom building near the parking lot. We did not go to the visitor center.

Have fun on your trip!! We loved ours. We were on the Radiance northbound.
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#14
63 Posts
Joined Nov 2010
Thanks Cheryl. Does the bus drop off at the Visitor's Center or do you have to walk? I just booked our cruise two days ago and haven't had much time to research.
#15
Plainfield, Indiana, USA
2,433 Posts
Joined Apr 2003
Originally posted by hnsummers
Thanks Cheryl. Does the bus drop off at the Visitor's Center or do you have to walk? I just booked our cruise two days ago and haven't had much time to research.
Not in front of it, but very close by. There's a small tent with some benches where the shuttle buses pickup/dropoff. Then you walk across the street to near the restroom building, then from there you can walk to the visitor center. Not far at all. The Visitor Center is sort of on a hill, but there's an elevator. And you can clearly see the path to the photo spot, and off of that path starts the trail to Nugget Falls.
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#16
New York
618 Posts
Joined Oct 2007
If you pay when you get on the white or blue bus for a 1 way trip, is it $8?
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#18
43 Posts
Joined May 2011
Thanks Cheryl for the information, I guess Fleckle was right in his suggestion on buying only a one way ticket. it's good to know. I think we will do just that and buy a one way ticket when we go. Thanks.