Preparing for Your Cruise
Depending on which cruise you’re taking, there are few different ways to get to the boat. We arrive and depart at three main points for all of our trips: Juneau, Petersburg, and Anacortes. All three have different amenities and may help you decide if you want to stay an extra day or head straight to the boat or airport after arriving.
Getting to the Boat
There are a lot of hotels to choose from in Juneau if you’d like to spend an extra day before or after your cruise. In some cases, they will pick you up from the airport. Northern Dream will get you from your hotel and bring you to the boat.
Not staying the night before? Depending on when you arrive, we can take you directly to the boat or if you’re early, we can take you to downtown Juneau to explore while we take care of your luggage and then come get you when we’re ready. At the end of the cruise, we can take you back to the hotel or straight to the airport.
Things To Do in Juneau
The state capital of Alaska and one of its largest cities, Juneau is both a mountain city and a coastal town. As such, there’s much to see and do. During a quick stay, Mendenhall Glacier is a popular tourist spot and a great photo op. Thinking of spending more than a day? Hike to Nugget Falls or any one of the other natural scenes in the area.
In town, you can visit the Capitol building, visit historic homes, and even take a picture with the statue Patsy Ann, Juneau’s most famous dog and mascot from the 1930’s. Memorials remembering those from World War II and the fishing industry and public art institutions dot the city.
Hungry? Seafood is on the menu of course, but Juneau offers all sorts of cuisine. Distilleries, saloons, and brewpubs are all available to whet your whistle and grills, bistros, and cafes have something for everyone. Thinking of spending an extra day in Juneau? It’s easy to find something to do.
Getting to the Boat
If you’re planning on staying the night before or after the cruise, we recommend getting a room at the Scandia House. Located across from the marina, Scandia can shuttle you to the marina where we’ll meet you and take your luggage. The hotel is a five-minute cab ride from the airport.
If staying the night after a cruise, the Scandia will pick you up from the dock. Heading straight to the airport? Another short cab ride and you’re there. Have some time to kill in the interim? There’s plenty to see and do for a few hours in town.
Things To Do in Petersburg
Mixing Norwegian and Native American influences, Petersburg has a little bit of everything. A downtown stroll will give you the chance to peruse art galleries featuring native artwork or look at Norwegian styling of the storefronts. Murals, a warming cup of coffee, and fresh seafood can be found on almost every corner.
Leave the downtown area to investigate tidepools, beaches, and other points of interest. The Clausen Memorial Museum is packed with information about the history of Petersburg and the three harbors house 400 commercial and sports boats. Walk along the docks and watch the salmon trollers, crabbers, and tug boats all at work.
As is the case all over Alaska, there are chances to glimpse the local wildlife. Eagle Roost Park has a viewing area for Eagle roosting (obviously) and tidepools for exploring at low tide. The Wrangell Narrows is a great place to stroll and spot river otters, bears, orcas, porpoise, sea ducks and a wide variety of sea birds.
Getting to the Boat
Anacortes is a little more time-consuming to get to than either Juneau or Petersburg, but most of our clients fly into Seattle and take a two-hour shuttle north. A few of our more adventurous passengers even chartered a float plane to bring them to Anacortes. For the shuttle, we recommend Bellair Charters & Airporter.
There are several hotels located just minutes from Cap Sante Marina if you’re staying a night. Check with your hotel to see if they offer a van to take you to the marina. If not, you can take a cab. If you’re not staying a night, the shuttle will bring you to the marina. Take the shuttle back to Seattle if you’ve decided to head straight back home after the cruise.
Things To Do in Anacortes
The starting point for the northbound reposition trip and the ending point for the southbound repositioning cruise, Anacortes is located on Fidalgo Island and accessible by vehicle. Connected by a bridge to the mainland, Anacortes is a picturesque way to start your two-week cruise to Alaska.
There are several options for lodging, from the affordable to the luxurious. From a quaint bed and breakfast to larger hotels and even a casino, Anacortes has lodging for every taste. Speaking of tastes, you’ll have your choice of bistros, delis, and diners in Anacortes for a meal the night before your cruise or an early breakfast.
Thinking about spending the day in Anacortes? There’s plenty to do. In addition to the casino, there is shopping, art galleries, and all manners of outdoor adventure. Kayaking, hiking, and biking as well as whale-watching tours are all available from outfitters. It’s a great town to get ready for your cruise or to wind down before heading home.