KETCHIKAN, ALASKA PORT GUIDE
A popular cruise port, the town of Ketchikan is known for it’s Native American totem poles, the snow-capped mountains and waterfalls in nearby Misty Fjords National Monument and wildlife. There are enough choices of things to do for you to want to come back again.
Here are some of the “bests” that we suggest to clients:
Best time to visit: The Alaska cruise season runs from April through September. Highs in the 60s make and an average monthly rainfall of under 10” make June through August the most popular months, but there are benefits to travel during any part of the cruise season.
Best place for a beer: The Asylum Bar (https://www.theasylumbar.com/). You can’t miss it at 522 Water Street. Jack Nicholson’s character from One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is grinning out on the street from a second-floor window.
Best smoked salmon chowder: The Alaska Fish House (https://exclusivealaska.com/our-restaurant). Located at 3 Salmon Landing, next door to the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show. Among the best smoked salmon chowder you’ll ever find-- you can eat in the restaurant, out at a picnic table or take it to go.
Best touristy show: Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show (https://alaskanlumberjackshow.com/). Sometimes touristy is fun and these athletes show their skill and make you laugh. Entrance and seating are wheelchair accessible. Although the show is outdoors, the seating area is heated and covered.
Best area to wander: Head to Creek Street (http://creekstreetketchikan.com/). Long ago Ketchikan’s red-light district, it’s lined with restored buildings (brothels now housing shops) and is a good place to shop for native Alaskan crafts (look for the native-owned stores). It’s a quant area, wonderful for photographers and runs along a creek where you may see seals and salmon. Visit Dolly’s House Museum to see what a home was like back during the days of legal prostitution. Not only was Dolly one of the most renowned ladies of the night, but her home is reported to be haunted.
Best excursion to soar: A Misty Fjords Seaplane never disappoints. Fly over Misty Fjords National Monument (http://www.alaska.org/detail/misty-fjords-national-monument) to view lakes, waterfalls, cliffs and wilderness from your plane.
Best excursion to hang in the treetops: Rainforest Canopy and Zipline Adventure (http://rainforestcanopyzipline.com/) is for those whose feet don’t need to be on the ground. Eight ziplines and three hanging bridges will give you a treetop view of Tongass National Forest.
Best local culture immersion: Saxman Native Village (http://www.alaska.org/detail/saxman-totem-park) has been a longtime favorite excursion for visitors wanting to enjoy the largest collection of standing Native American Totem Poles, see carvers and a Clan House. While there, you may enjoy Native Dancing shows, gravel walking paths through the rainforest on the edge of the park and the indigenous plants.
Best tip: It’s often rainy or misty in Ketchikan. Take an inexpensive rain poncho and umbrella so you’re ready to explore.
Ketchikan maps can be found at http://www.experienceketchikan.com/ketchikan-map.html.
Book your Alaska cruise with Connie George Travel Associates for more tips on the ports you’ll visit.
Booking a group? Contact Connie to see if we can help you create a fantastic Alaska cruise experience for your group.