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Best time of the season to travel in Alaska?


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Hi....DH and I are interested in Alaska in 2022.  What time of the season is the best for a cruise and land tour?   Anyone with experience on Norwegian in Alaska?   Any advice helpful!  

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  • debbeck changed the title to Best time of the season to travel in Alaska?

Does Norwegian go to Glacier Bay?  If not, it is a bad choice.  Remember, when you go to AK, it is what is outside of the ship that is important (ports, time at each port and port arrival / departure times) and not the amenities on the ship.



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I prefer either early June or late August. Every time will have it's pros & cons.

And for the land portion of your trip, I'd recommend putting together your own trip instead of purchasing the pre-packaged trips from the cruise lines.

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   I actually tried putting that in the forum search bar before I posted.   I didn't get any response.   I figured there would be a ton of interesting advice and other tidbits that I usually find on Cruise Critic.   


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  • 5 weeks later...
On 4/3/2021 at 11:45 AM, debbeck said:

Hi....DH and I are interested in Alaska in 2022.  What time of the season is the best for a cruise and land tour?   Anyone with experience on Norwegian in Alaska?   Any advice helpful!  


It actually depends on what it is you're specifically looking for.  We've done NCL to Alaska in May, June, September and October...on the Jewel, the Pearl and the Sun...and each cruise has had its advantages.


I do think that itinerary is the most important consideration--and especially the port times.  (Not all cruises are created equal in this area.)  Some port times are longer and some are shorter...so you'll wanna keep that in mind if you have particular "must see" items on your list.  And are you looking for one-way or roundtrip...?


Price is also going to vary depending on the month you choose to go.  (Earlier and later in the season tend to be less expensive.)  Some excursions aren't running during those early or late cruises...and although a lot of gift shops have beginning or end of season sales, the selection of items can be more limited. 


The ships also vary a bit...do you prefer a larger or smaller ship...?   And do you plan to spend more time on the ship...or in the ports...? 


If you can give some more specifics, I (and others) might be able to give you some more ideas...? 


Hope this is helpful...! 🙂 



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The season begins early May and ends late October

That is the cruise season so to speak.

At the start and end of the season not all the shore excursion land tours are available.

Prime time is June through early September.


Departure Port cities:

Seattle cruises centering on the Southeast portion with a required Canadian port call

Vancouver - Anchorage (Whittier/Seward) are north south coastal cruises


Land tours are basically started at Anchorage or Fairbanks and generally involve 

a portion of travel on the Alaska Railroad


Holland-America Princess and NCL in that order round out the top cruise lines in Alaska.


On 4/3/2021 at 12:58 PM, bottom-dragger said:

query "Best time of the season to travel in Alaska? " in the forum's search and you'll receive over one million responses


There are so many variations (million responses) and Alaska is so H-U-G-E - where do you begin ?

There are glaciers to visit -

There is wild life to see -

There are mountains to view -

There are scenic train trips (WPYRR) -

And more -

And more -


One cruise trip land package tour can't begin to cover it all -

Even the Alaska locals can only scratch the surface of the tree forests - tundra basin etc.


Noted the OP is from Pennsylvania - so a flight or rail trip to one of the port cities would

be the start of this. 


And then your own budget of how much to spend and how far will it go.


An excellent start is right here at CC with the NCL forum - Alaska forum - and

the various port cities - AND don't forget to use this internet thing to do more

research - have a club membership - travel agent you work with contact those

sources to expand your horizons.


We are coming out of this covid virus pandemic - plan carefully to get the best

deal on what you want to do and price and time to visit - Alaska 2022 should

start this off - 2021 does not fare well with getting much of anything going -

Canada restrictions in play.

Expect 2022 to be very crowded although distancing spacing of guests maybe

in play with everyone on board being vaccinated - too early to dwell on this.


Keep coming back to CC frequently with your questions and what you would

like to see visit all within your time and budget.  

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The best time to visit is whenever one is able to be there.


All of my cruises to Alaska have been in the Summer; have wanted to sail during Spring and Fall, but have yet to do so.


A totally different, but beautiful time to visit Alaska is in December at Christmas.  There are sights that I saw and experiences that I had which could not have been duplicated other than during their Winter.  

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