Have you ever Googled Alaska’s landscape? If so, you’ve likely seen pictures of glaciers. These massive sheets of ice are a quintessential part of the Alaskan experience, and there are tens of thousands to see! Join a local company for a glacier hike, sign up for an ice climbing class, or head out on a boat cruise. Whatever you choose, we promise a glacier tour will be the highlight of your trip. Here are some of our favorites.
Learn about the best glacier tours in Alaska and other guided adventures when you download our free Vacation Guide! It’s full of recommendations for dining, shopping, recreation, and more.
5 of the Best Glacier Tours in Alaska
1. Knik Glacier Tours
First up on our list of must-see destinations is the spectacular Knik Glacier, located on the northern edge of Alaska’s Chugach Mountains. This National Natural Landmark is surrounded by snow-covered peaks and waterfalls. With several tour companies operating in the area, visitors can explore the ice field by helicopter, jet boat, airboat, or even packraft. Read our blog for details.
2. Matanuska Glacier Tours
Another popular attraction is Matanuska Glacier. It’s the largest glacier in Alaska and measures 13,000 feet high and 27 miles long. A fee grants visitors entry to the parking lot, and from there, it’s an easy 15-minute hike out to the ice. Take a tour with NOVA River Guides and explore frozen caves, tunnels, and canyons, then stop for lunch at the Long Rifle Lodge where you’ll have unobstructed views of the glacier from the dining room.
3. Portage Glacier Cruise
For a one-of-a-kind experience you won’t soon forget, drive to Seward for an hour-long glacier cruise aboard the MV Ptarmigan. This ship takes you right up to the face of Portage Glacier and features an enclosed, heated cabin and open-air observation deck. Be sure to bring your camera; you’ll pass countless icebergs along the way.
Local Tip: Before or after your cruise, visit the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center and learn about the area’s incredible species. You’ll see everything from muskox to grizzly bears!
4. Kenai Fjords National Park
Known for its lush forests and abundant wildlife, Kenai Fjords National Park is the perfect place to spend a day. It’s also home to five glaciers: Exit Glacier, Aialik Glacier, Grewingk Glacier, McCarty Glacier, and Harding Icefield. Sign up for a cruise with Kenai Fjords Tours for an up-close look at the frozen tundra. Their National Park Tour is one of the best glacier tours in Alaska and departs Seward at 8 and 11:30 a.m. Lunch is included.
5. 26 Glacier Cruise
Seeing over two dozen glaciers in one afternoon might sound impossible, but with Phillips Cruises & Tours, you can do just that! Their 26 Glacier Cruise showcases the rugged beauty of Prince William Sound in just five hours. Simply hop aboard the Klondike Express catamaran in Whittier and cruise over 140 miles to Surprise Glacier in Harriman Fjord, Barry Arm, and College Fjord, where you’ll see even more tidewater glaciers. A hot lunch is also included in your trip.
Book Your Stay at Alaska Garden Gate B&B
There you have it! You’re now an expert on some of the best glacier tours in Alaska. When it’s time to start planning your adventure, be sure to book your stay at our Inn. Alaska Garden Gate is the perfect home base in Palmer and offers a variety of accommodations and amenities to enjoy. Your stay even includes a delicious and nutritious breakfast each morning.
To find your perfect cottage, apartment, or bed and breakfast room, check our availability and book directly on our website. We look forward to having you!