Juneau Mendenhall Glacier Excursion Reviews
We bought this excursion when we got off the ship. Not sure who the operator was, but our bus driver was Mike Breaks (sp?) and he was awesome! He narrated on the way up there and back and we learned so much about Juneau. He pointed out 4 bald eagles that we would never have seen on our own.
After the garden we went to the glacier. We didn't even have enough time to walk to the waterfall by the glacier. It was a mile out to the waterfall/glacier. You do not get to walk on the glacier and it is still off at a distance even after the mile walk out to it. You only get 1 hour at this stop. We almost missed the bus and we were almost running on the way back. Don't bother with this one.
At the Glacier, we did not go into the information center, instead we wanted to hike to where we could get close to the glacier and waterfall. Very pretty scenery.
We were suppose to do the Mendenhall glacier rafting trip but it was canceled due to heavy rain (12") the day before so we ended up taking a bus trip to the glacier. Probably not quite as exciting as the rafting trip would have been but at least we got to see the glacier. Also stopped at Juneau Rainforest Garden which was nice and took the tram up the mountain in downtown Juneau. We were disappointed but it ended up ok.
I booked an excursion with Above and Beyond Alaska that included a hike to Mendenhall Glacier, glacier hiking and viewing the ice caves. It was beautiful!! We did not book through the cruise line, as only one tour goes to this area. I would definitely recommend it! Didn't get to see much of Juneau though due to our limited time at Port.
Brief ride to Juneau Airport for helicopter connection. Operator supplies you with boots and coat if necessary. Glacier air temperature was 6 degree C. After a ride (scenic tour actually over the valley and glacier - coming remarkably close to the walls) landed for about 30 minutes on Mendenhall Glacier. The blue color is indescribable. You walk around with a guide who points ot what we're looking out and takes photos. Be advised the wind chill was below 0 degrees C. This has to be on your bucket list.
Good - would love to have had more time - thought we'd be in a boat, but visitor's center via bus was fine and surrounding area with salmon stream was nice. Very informative bus ride.
We booked the helicopter tour to the glacier and that was expensive, but we still have smiles on our faces after that. What an experience. I would do it again and again, if I could.
Juneau was our favorite of the towns this cruise visits. I would have liked to have spent more time there.
Don't miss out on Tracy's King Crab Shack. It's literally just a couple of shacks just off the port where you dock. They had the best Alaska King crab legs I have ever had!
I did the Mendehall Glacier. Rained a bit but it was still a great site to see. Must do. I was told to do a helicopter tour. I regret that I did not do that.
A bus tour of the area on the way to Mendenhall Glacier was very informative. We stopped briefly at a view point across the water from the ships. The bus left us at the glacier for an hour, unfortunately not enough time to walk to Nugget Falls. Entry to the Visitor Center was included and we had a few minutes to see the salmon run. Back in Juneau we took the free shuttle to Walmart for pop etc. a quick 15 min ea way. Back in Juneau we ate at Tracys Crab shack, the combo of 2 buns crab bisque 4 crab cakes and a crab leg was worth the cost. YUM
You must go to the Mendenhall Glacier. No need to book through the ship unless you want some other attractions added on. Just get off the ship and pay $10 each pay per person for the Glacier Express bus. Runs every 20 minutes. The Visitors Center is great and just walking around and seeing the glacier is amazing. Take the trail near the drop off point as well to see a wonderful creek and maybe some wildlife. Salmon are in the creek spawing in August but not now. Of course you can spend big bucks and do the helicopter thing and it is probably amazing. Your money you choose. Again the town is overrun with jewlery stores. Red Dog saloon is fun and Tram to the top of Mt Roberts could be nice with hiking trails at the top if you are inclined.
This was our least impressive tour of the 3 that we took. Basically, you are driven up to Mendenhall National Park and dropped off for 2 or 3 hours. You're on your own! We saw the glacier and the National Park Service lectures were fantastic. We had HOPED to see the glacier up close or to hear/see the calving of ice bergs from the glacier, but this is not part of this tour!
What was a saving asset of this tour was "Big John" Rock, our tour guide/driver. He made the drive fun, and he dropped us off in Juneau for a shopping tour. Following a dinner at the Red Dog Saloon, we waited at the tour bus stop for a 2nd bus to take us to the ship. Wouldn't you know it?? John was the driver of the second bus AND he remembered us. He made this tour fun.
Would have like to have spent more time there.
Mendenhall Glacier & Hatchery Tour. It also included a salmon bake. Food was fabulous, the glacier was amazing. Take the time to make the 20 minute walk down to the glacier and Nugget Falls.
The salmon were running, which made the hatchery surprisingly entertaining. More salmon than you will ever see in your life.
Juneau: Loved this stop. We chose to NOT pay $70 per person (So, $350 for the 5 of us) for the on ship excursion to Mendenhall Glacier, and instead the 5 of us hopped into a taxi (right off the boat) for $40, and spent most of the day exploring this amazing place. We also opted to pay an additional $3 per person for the museum tour. Return cab was $35. Total cost $90 instead of $350, and we were able to take our time.
Too long for the experience. We should have booked off the ship and added a city tour.
At the Kiosk outside the trip, you can buy a shuttle/tram ticket. From $45-$50, depending on how well you bargain. The Shuttle ($10 if you do not want the tram ride, takes 20 minutes) will take you to Mendenhall Glacier. You can pay $3 and look out the Observatory, but that is kind of silly since it is not exactly as close as you can get by walking. We took the 3-mile East Glacier Trail. It takes 2 or more hours. There are signs posted on how to follow it. We then walked up to the Glacier. There is another 45-minute walk to a falls closer to the Glacier. You may see bald eagles there, we did. The shuttle runs every 20-minutes, and while you are waiting there is a small pavilion in the back of the parking lot where you can see salmon.
We took a bus tour of the city and later were taken over to Mendenhall Glacier. The overall trip was interesting and the glacier was incredible. The visitor center is amazing, and the surrounding streams are beautiful. Definitely a must!
Salmon were spawning, bummed not to see bears.... glacier was pretty.
very interesting but crowded.
We took this same tour three years ago. Mendenhall glacier is very beautiful and the paths are well marked and easily accessible, but it is always crowded with other tours. The salmon hatchery is disgusting and could be skipped. Containers of dead salmon, blood and all, are quite visible. They remove the eggs and sperm an, d dispose of the rest. The hatchery guide talked so fast no one could understand her! The salmon bake is good and a nice surrounding, but once was enough. The town is fun to shop and visit the Red Dog Saloon.
Amazing place. The falls were fantastic. Go on the early trip and walk to fall first, then do the visitor centre. Much quieter at the falls then.
We enjoyed Juneau. Again we took Frontier Van for an excursion. It rained, however it was nice driving around the island. Our driver was very informative as well.
We went to Mendallhal Glacier/and Gardens. It was fine but very similar to what you already see when the ship gets near the Sawyer Glacier. I would have preferred to go on the helicopter and actually step on the glacier.
Took tour with Gastineau Guiding. Our guide Richard was very knowledgeable about the area and our captain Scotty found several whales for us to observe. Tour was a lot of fun!
We actually took the Rainforest Trails and Whales expedition with a hike through the rainforest, a veiw of Mendenhall Glacier, and then a whale-watching adventure. Our guides were so professional and knowledgeable about the area. We were able to see quite a bit including a small iceberg flip out at the glacier, and several families of humpback whales and orcas. There were eagles, seals, and gorgeous scenery. They cannot guarantee whale sightings, but mid-June seemed the right time to see it all.
The Mendenhall glacier tour was good also. We went to the fish hatchery and gardens first, then to the glacier. The hatchery was of marginal interest to me. The gardens were fascinating. The glacier was beautiful. It was amazing to see how much it has retreated in the last 50 years!
I wish I had taken the glacer/whale watch tour, however. Those who did that saw quite the show put on by Orcas and hump-backs.
Ben was our guide. He did a great job. The glacier was magnificent!
We booked with the Blue Bus. They only run every 30 minutes. We did not have a problem getting back on the bus to return to ship. It was nice to not have to be rushed at the glacier. There is a small fee for the visitors center, pay it, and watch the movie.
Splurge at Tracy's King Crab Shack. Some of the best king crab I have ever had!
We went to Mendenhall glacier in Juneau, book a bus ride there on the cheap. It was amazing, saw a porcupine climbing the tree. This is a must see.
Very informative and worthwhile 1-2 hours. Enjoyed the visitors center and video. The glacier was majestic - see it while you can as it is receding significantly each year. The short hike down to the waterfall was good, but dress warmly as it is 15-20 degrees cooler near the glacier.
Mendenhall Glacier is breathtaking. There are trails you can take to get closer to the glacier rather than staying at the main observation area but time is very limited and it would not be a leisurely hike.
Bathrooms tend to stay busy and there was always a line for both of the ladies restrooms. With the exception of water, food and drink are not allowed in the park area due to bears so you will need to leave them on the bus.
Our bus driver was great with a wealth of information about the area and Alaska. We saw the Rainforest Garden Adventure first. They had some flowers and flowering trees. We were put in a shuttle bus for a steep climb to the top of the hill through the forest, where we had a view. Then we took a golf cart ride down to the gift shop. Not really much to see, except a pretty much normal forest. The bus driver then took us to Mendenhall Glacier for a 90 minute visit. This gave us enough time to walk to Nugget Falls. It was spectacular as it lies in front of the glacier. Finally the driver took us to a viewpoint overlooking the Juneau area and airport. Next time I would just do the glacier.
Mendenhall Glacier was fantastic and it is worth the walk to Nugget Falls. We had only 1 hour at this location so it was somewhat rushed. It was very crowded when we went. The young man at the Robert's Tram location for Dolphin, was totally inept. We ended up walking to their bus ourselves after waiting close to 30 minutes for it to arrive. He didn't even look at us after we checked in with him. Come to find out, we needed yellow wrist bands for the glacier but he didn't provide that either.
Not enough time at the glacier park. The stop at the hatchery should be bypassed to allow more time a the glacier park. Make the trek to the waterfall if you have time.
Harv & Marv took us there very nice. Could stay at our leisure or return to town with Harv & Marv Shuttle
Juneau was cold [high 40's] and raining. We stood around waiting for our tour a long time out in this mess. When we finally boarded a bus and got warmed up, we enjoyed the trip up to the glacier. If you have any idea that you might like to see the Mendenhall Glacier, better not wait as it is receding rapidly. Especially enjoyed the falls at the base of the glacier, but be warned that it is a long walk. Don't be on that walk when the bus comes for you.
An hour delay getting off the boat and over 2 hour delay for our excursion made for a long day in Juneau. The bus took us to the Juneau Rain forest Garden which I had mistakenly confused with the Glacier Garden. (where my mom wanted to go) for a short 30 minute visit. The muffins and tea served here were really delicious. The rainf orest was pretty as well but too early for blooming flowers. Mendenhall Glacier was amazing and beautiful. We walked down by the lake and got as close as we were allowed. I wish we would have had more time here to walk part of the trail. We are slow walkers and did not want to walk over a mile. We did go in the visitors center and viewed mountain goats on the mountain through the telescope. We touched a piece of ice from the glacier as well. The gift shop here is nice but pricey. We shopped in town before boarding the tramway. We were exhausted by this time and did not walk around at the top to see anything other than the gift shop. The view from the tram of Juneau is really amazing and beautiful however. The weather was unseasonably warm that day. I ended up taking off the coat and jacket.
It was rushed but great! Would have liked to have more time. Guide was excellent.
Our favorite part of the trip! We saw kayaks and helicopters providing unique views of the glacier, but we tackled the trails for our first visit. I hope to return and try one of those previously mentioned alternatives. We were told we didn't have enough time to view the falls via the trail, so we trekked some shorter 1/3 mile trails and visited the information center, which was basic yet educational.
Juneau – We did the Costal Helicopter tour and had Jamie as our pilot. We went to and landed on the Herbert Glacier. Well worth it and our favorite excursion. (more info on Tripadvisor) The port itself was nice.
We bought the tickets in the harbour for $ 50 less than on the ship.
$ 125 each for Glacier and Whalewatching combination. We first went around for about one hour in the City, than took the bus to the Mendenhall Glacier with some very good informations from the driver. We had 1 1/2 hour to stay at the glacier. I was sorry, that the glacier was so far away.
My hope was, to make some footsteps on the glacier ice.
But it was nice, but not very special.
We arrived in Juneau on Monday,May 12th at 11AM. We were ready to get off the ship and start exploring Juneau. We never take the excursions the ship offers as we do not enjoy large crowds and prefer to do things at our own pace. We took a taxi to Mendenhall Glacier- Alaska’s only accessible glacier by foot, It is located in Tongrass National Forest 12 miles from downtown area. It is a short cab ride or you can use Glacier Express Bus service that takes you directly to the glacier. It is a Bright blue bus that runs every 30 minutes starting at 9AM until 6PM. We were one of the very first people to arrive so we had the place to ourselves. We took beautiful photos of the glacier and then took a hike to get closer to the waterfalls. The hike is relatively easy and it is picturesque. We were able to take photos so close to the waterfall we were getting wet. It was so beautiful and serene. We were leaving the glacier as the hoards of people and buses were arriving, so we timed that perfectly. Our friend got a glimpse of a bear in the distance, however did not have his camera ready to shoot.
The 5+ rating goes to the Glacier. We only had 45 minutes there not nearly enough time, an absolute must see. We did not have time to hike to the water fall - we will next time. If you have an annual pass to national parks, brink it with you, otherwise the visitor's center will cost you $3, unless booked through the cruise line - where it is built in.
The boat captain was very informative and we saw several Humpback whales. We also saw sea lions on a small island. Once we returned to the pier we were taken to Mendenhall Glacier by a bus.
amazing...did this in combination with hatchery and gardens, but did glacier last. It would have been better to see earlier in the day when the sun was shining on it.
Juneau was chilly, rainy and windy. It took the ship about an hour to push up to the dock. They even had a tug boat pushing trying to get it close enough to throw the lines out to help. Needless to say, we were late docking so there was a huge line to get off of the ship. I think that almost every passenger on the ship was in line to get off. We booked the Mendenhall Glacier, Salmon Hatchery & Salmon Bake. We boarded a bus for a 20 minute ride to the Glacier. Just as we got to the park, a bear walked across the road in front of the bus. Did not see it but heard it was there. It was raining, not hard but enough to be cold and wet. Walked around the park. Saw many icebergs, an eagle just sitting in a tree like he was posing for photos. Saw many salmon in the stream. Also saw a porcupine and her baby. Back on the bus to see the salmon hatchery. Very educational. Back on bus to Salmon Bake. Pretty good food. All you can eat salmon, chicken, baked beans, cold slaw, corn bread, and blueberry cake. The bus will take you back to the ship or you can have it drop you off in Juneau. We got off in Juneau to visit the Red Dog Saloon. Walked around and did a bit of shopping and got another shuttle back to the ship. We wanted to do the Roberts Tram but ran out of time plus it was rainy.
This is a must for any visitor to Juneau. Most of us in the lower 48 have never seen anything like this gigantic frozen river. We did a self-guided tour and it was great.
Low rating was due to the fact that our tour company only allowed us 1 hour here. Not enough time to walk out to the waterfall and back. If we missed the bus, he said it was a $32. each person for cab fare back to town. So we opted to be sure to catch the bus back and spent the cab fare at the Red Dog instead. ((:
,Low rating was due to the fact that our tour company only allowed us 1 hour here. Not enough time to walk out to the waterfall and back. If we missed the bus, he said it was a $32. each person for cab fare back to town. So we opted to be sure to catch the bus back and spent the cab fare at the Red Dog instead. ((:
There are kiosks when you get off ship and they bargain. We had a narrated tour to Mendenhall Glacier for $25 each round trip. Plus it's $3 for the Visitors Center
The compact port area is picturesque, though dominated by the big cruise lines and tourist-oriented shops, restaurants, etc., some quite good. The surrounding mountains come down to within yards of the main drag. It was fun to stroll.
The nearby Alaska State Museum is a highlight, well worth a couple of hours at least. It capably features regional native American artifacts and culture, exhibits on natural history, and a few interesting quirks. There are other interesting attractions we didn't have time to visit.
A short bus ride out of town, Mendenhall Glacier is a great introduction to the natural forces that formed the region, with an excellent visitors' center and easy walking paths to spectacular views. We saw spawning salmon running upstream, a napping porcupine in a tree, and a perching bald eagle, virtually in the suburbs of Juneau.
Rode the local express bus and the driver was Thomas. Great fun
Go late in the day for a better chance to see wildlife. Saw a bear feeding in the river!!!
Don't book a Mendenhall Glacier tour through the ship! Instead, when you arrive at the port you will see many kiosks offering the same tour for $8 per person each way to go to the glacier. We paid $49 each through the ship when we could have paid $16 each for the exact same thing right at the port.
Our packaged included ziplining first, then we went to Mendenhall. We loved it, but wish we had more time and weren't so rushed.
Interesting tour that included the Mendenhall Glacer and the Macaulay Salmon Hatchery - great samples of salmon were available at the hatchery - really enjoyed our time there. The tour ended with a salmon bake, which was nice, but I would have rather had some time to look around Juneau, the State Capital.
Fantastic weather. Embarked directly from the side of the cruise ship, which was efficient. Long trip, and temperature drops as you approach glaciers so bring layers. Friendly crew and informative guide. Bring polarized sunglasses for a trippy return, as the boat has polarized window film and "crossed polarizers" results in mountainsides turning colors!
Got to see several bears and walk on the glacier.
This tour also included Glacier Gardens, a small but pretty garden which offers a sweeping view of the area. The visit to the glacier was enhanced by an excellent explanation of the formation of glaciers and of glacial action by a park ranger.
I think this tour is worth what it costs.
Bus driver, Kyle, was funny, bright and entertaining as well as a excellent driver. The walkways allowed for safe viewing of bears in their habitat, just feet from you. The Mendenhall Glacier was beautiful.
Mendenhall Glacier is a bit overprice but since there wasn't a lot of time at this port, we had to book it with the cruise line. Overall, it's an enjoyable excursion as we hiked to Nuggets Fall. On a scale of 1 to 5 in term of difficulty, this hike is a 1.5. Definitely need comfortable shoes and water. The fall is beautiful with extremely clear water.
This was a great excursion. 25 or so people on a fast boat, plenty of room inside and out, very informative, clean bathroom. This excursion allows you to see one of the most impressive channels ever created by the cosmos. The scenery is spectacular. The two glaciers are incredible and the boat goes as close as you can safely get. We had good weather and the glaciers on top of the mountains were also visible. There were many icebergs. Parts of the glacier calved and it was thunderous. There were mountain goats, whales, seals, sea otters, and several bird species.
Go on this trip, its worth every dollar. Inspect the Alaska salmonberry jelly they have for sale before buying. I bought two, one was no good when I opened it at home.
Awesome price! Much lower than the cruise lines identical excursion.
Took a glacier hike out to Mendenhall and the ice cave. One of the best things I have ever done. It was a challenging hike but not too bad for someone in decent shape with some hiking experience.
It was beautiful to see, but after seeing Sawyer Glacier in Tracy Arm Fjord just not quite the same.
Great bus ride and then some walking to the falls.
The Mendenhall Glacier is too far away to see very well and the cruise ship does two days getting us really close to the glaciers and bringing aboard a park ranger to explain many interesting facts about the glaciers. This excursion was largely a waste of time and money.
The bus driver was very informative about the Juneau area and kept us informed as to what we could do, should do, and shouldn't do at each stop. The glacier was wonderful and we saw many bald eagles. How cool was that?
The salmon hatchery was informative, and we got to see some seals. It isn't anything super special though. The tour took about 3-3:30 hours, as we left at 11:30 and didn't get done until after 3pm. Then we had lunch, and a late dinner onboard the ship
Very nice got some beautiful pictures.
Do NOT go to the Glacier Garden if you are afraid of heights!! Beautiful, but scary!!
Amazing trip. I suspect I took over 300 pictures here alone.
The bus took us from the tramway to the USDA Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center. The driver was informative and entertaining. We hiked the 0.8 mi Nugget Falls Trail for some excellent views of the glacier and falls before we had to board the bus for return to the tramway (very close to the dock). The cost was about $13 when purchased with an all day Tramway pass. The bus schedule resulted in a late lunch, but at least the restaurant wasn't crowded. One could easily spend the day at the glacier. To do so, the city bus (Capital Transit blue route, $2 each way, exact fare required) adds a 1.5 mi. walk. Taxi or rental car are also options.
It was good - Sarah was a wonderful guide.
the glacial tour was informative
One of the most beautiful sights on the trip!
Mendenhall Glacier is breathtaking but our trip was too short. 45 min only. I wished there was more time to hike closer to the glacier.
Great experience. Those of us who went on the Glacier walk and helicopter ride just loved it, while those who chose the dog sled adventure were equally happy.
In Juneau, we walked off the ship and bought tickets on one of the many buses that run every hour to (and from) Mendenhall Glacier and Visitor Center. Bus tickets are $16 per person round trip and admission to the visitor center was $3 per person (total $19 p/p and we were free to go and to return when we wanted compare that to ship pricing and schedules!). We spent a couple of relaxing hours exploring the glacier park grounds and then learning a lot about glaciers in the visitor center. Again, we opted to be dropped off in the downtown area to do a little shopping, exploring on our own, and of course, to visit The Red Dog Saloon, enjoy an adult beverage and buy the hubs a souvenir t-shirt, before walking back to the ship.
Combined Rainforest gardens, Mendenhall Glacier and State Museum tour. The tour included two of the highest rated sites (glacier and museum), only took a few hours and was relatively inexpensive. You could do these 2 on your own with the shuttle to the glacier and a moderate walk to museum and save a few bucks. Mendenhall is impressive and there is a lovely waterfall (via a moderate walk) as well as a nice visitors center. The State Museum is also recommended as it gives a very good overview of the native cultures, gold mining history and information on wildlife, geography, etc. We also walked around town and visited the unimpressive Capitol Building (with a self guided tour) and the outside of the Governor's Mansion and, of course in town shopping.
There are 2 bus services in Juneau that provide a shuttle to Mendenhall Glacier. The cost is $16 round trip. You can buy tickets from the representative selling tickets at the various booths as you get off the ship. We purchased our tickets and had a nice narrated drive in an old school bus to the national park. There is no admission fee for the glacier itself, but it costs $3/pp to enter the visitor's center. The visitor's center has a video and some displays. As with all national parks, seniors get in free with their Golden Pass. We walked down to the lake and the waterfall. It was a nice, flat trail and an easy walk. We took the shuttle back to downtown Juneau and did some shopping. I wish we had waited until Ketchikan or Sitka to buy souvenirs for the kids. There was more variety and the prices were a little better. I had wanted to go to the Alaska State Museum and the Capitol Building which has a free tour, but there was very little time before they closed.
Outstanding to fly in a helicopter over the mountains to land on the glacier. We used the same company that Celebrity uses.
Wonderful time. Weather was beautiful, salmon were spawning, Mendenhall Glacier was majestic.
Got a real eyeopener at the Hatchery, never have I seen so many Salmon in one place, could have walked across them in the mouth of the hatchery there were so many, then off to the Glacier, beautiful area and fascinating presentation by the Rangers,didn't make the walk to the waterfall for health reasons but wish I could have.
Then off the the Salmon BBQ, the highlight of the day, the food was amazing, the music was great, and then the stroll up the spawning creek to the waterfall was a nice finish to a beautiful day, highly recommend this one.
Breathtaking but excursion far too short. If we returned we'd likely take one of the longer excursions to spend more time at the glacier. This isn't anyone's fault, just a matter of logisitcs when planning out a day.
This was the best deal of the cruise. Get off the ship and pay the $16.00 return fee for the Blue Bus to the Glacier.The visitors centre fee is $3 per person. Walk the trail to Nugget Falls and get up close and personal with the Glacier. Allow 4 hours to really enjoy all the points of interest and walk the gated boardwalks. We came face to face with a three year old male black bear. We also saw two baby bear cubs in the trees. The bus driver gave commentary on the way to the Glacier. Including the fact that the stores on the waterfront belong to the cruise lines. Even thought they have signs in the window that say that they are locally owned.
Mendenhall Glaciers/Nugget Falls. We took the Blue Bus, round trip ticket costing $18.00 ($36.00 for the both of us), at the booths just outside on the pier from where the Century docked. The bus ride took about 35 to 40 minutes to arrive at the Visitors Center. We walked the dirt foot path to the Glacier, about a mile there and back, total roughly around 2 miles of walking. This was not a strenuous walk, rather an easy non-rushed, at your own pace kind of walk. A little rocky at some points, a few inclines/declines, but still not tough at all (I have a bad knees). There are no rest rooms or water fountains between the Visitors Center and the Glacier, so if you have go, utilize the Visitor Center before heading out to the Glacier/Falls. What an AWESOME SITE to see, as huge and the amount of water that comes charging from Nugget Falls; it's amazing how calm the water flows at the very base of the falls to a calm and tranquil river with Mendenhall Glacier in the background. A must see if in Juneau. Lots of souvenir stores all around the city and numerous banks with ATM machines in case you need the cash.
Mendenhall Glacier is beautiful and we had a beautiful day to see it. Would had liked more time at the glacier.
The boat arrived early. We rented a car from Juneau Rental Car and drove to Mendenhall Glacier. The visitor center had a really nice movie with great photos. Nice presentations and displays of wildlife, glacier facts and you were allowed to touch a 200 year old piece of ice. They 'harvest' it about every other day and display it to touch. There is an admission fee and you are given a wristband. I did notice some people did not pay and were not wearing a band to walk on the paths. Really people?? Shame on you! The paths were well maintained. The path to Nugget Falls turned into sand and seemed to be the more popular hike. The end opens up into a large sandy beach right next to the falls. Some people climbed on the rocks next to the falls, or just lounged in the sand. Great view of the glacier from across the water. The buses started to arrive as we were leaving and it was getting more crowded. Go early because it is a very popular place.
There is NO NEED to book a tour of Mendenhall Glacier - it is EASY and CHEAP to take the shuttle and walk around by yourself without be "herded" with the masses and have limited time to see what interests you specifically. We loved walking around on our own and if we had booked a tour, we would have missed a totally chance encounter with a mama bear and her cub at the Steep trail.
We took a bus $16 round trip to Mendenhall Glacier then hiked the East Glacier trail on our own. Saw fresh bear scat on the trail so we made lot's of noise.
Would have like to spend more time in Juneau. Didn't have time to go up Mt Roberts Tramway.
Saw bald eagles right on dock.
Spent the entire morning at Mendenhall Glacier where we hiked two trails -- Nugget Falls and Trail of Time. For $16 each, we rode a bus from the tour kiosks area at the dock out to the park, spent as much time as we wanted there, and rode back to town where the driver dropped us near our next activity.
Beautiful place. Make sue to walk to the glacier, the Nugget fall, and the bear walk trail/salmon stream (the opposite site of the way going to the park)
Was great value and enjoyed the Glacier and the surrounding environment. The tour guide was funny and made for an interesting excursion.
Trip to hatchery, gardens and glacier
Beautiful, blue and huge, the glacier is a must see. There is also an incredible, powerful waterfall from snowmelt runoff. We only had an hour at the site so we skipped the visitors center and took the two mile, easy hike to the base of the waterfall and got a much closer look at the grandeur of the glacier. We took a ton of photos of both attractions along with plants, insects and eagles on ice flows.
Be aware that you don't get right up to the glacier unless you do one of the expensive helicopter tours. And you can take public transportation up to the glacier if you'd rather do this on your own rather than as part of a shore excursion and you'll save quite a bit.
Comfortable bus to glacier. Tour guide was from Utah and just working Juneau for the Summer. His commentary wasn't that interesting.
The glacier was amazing. Definitely a must see for an Alaskan cruise.
float plane tour of glaciers.
It was an expensive tour of $200. per person!! It was whale watching & Mendenhall Glacier--we watched humpback whales doing "bubble feeding" and it was awesome. Many bald eagles too.
The glacier tour on a boat was an excellent experience to see the glaciers from a close distance.
Knowledgeable local guide
Beautiful but quiet. No calving the day we were there. Great visitor center.
We thought the Mendenhall Glacier and Gardens tour was an excellent excursion. It wasn't too long and we had enough time to see all of the sights.
As we got off the boat, there were many booths offering tours and the same bus ride to Mendenhall Glacier http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/tongass/about-forest/offices/?cid=stelprdb5400800. We randomly picked one of them and after a 20 min wait boarded the bus and had a funny driver who told us stories all the way to the park. There we went on the 45 min hike to the waterfall close to the glacier and a short visit to the Visitors Center. It was very cool seeing the glacier up close (relatively) and the scenery and natural surroundings were just great. Definitely worth the visit.
20 minute shuttle to Mendenhall Glacier with narration. The bus was old and they pack you in it.
It was a $16 round trip bus ride but it was worth it!
We walked through town a bit and then stopped by one of the many local tour operator booths and paid $16 round trip per person to be taken to Mendenhall Glacier. Just beautiful and worth every penny. We did do the 1.3 mile hike to the waterfall which is totally worth it. If I was to offer one piece of advice, it would be to go early; right after your cruise ship arrives in port. As we were leaving there were tons of tour buses pulling up, dropping off hundred of passengers. It is much more serene, and easy to enjoy without as many people. Once we got back, we had to try the seafood at Tracy's Crab House. Although it was spendy, it was really delicious. The crab bisque was incredible, as were the crab cakes and king crab legs.
Breathtaking view of glacier, nice walking opportunity, photo shots
Nice excursion but instead of paying $44 each through the cruise line we could have spent $19 at the pier for the exact same thing.
Fascinating and educational.
We had booked this in advance from the online descriptions. We were very happy with this choice and highly recommend! Our trip began with a bus ride to the airfield - a pleasant driver, easy ride and upon arrival, we viewed a safety video and then on with the life vest, glacier boots and bundled up for the ride as it was drizzling and would be cold up on the glacier. We had a great ride in the helicopter complete with head sets. It would have been helpful to know that you could only bring what you could wear - no bags or purses - they were locked up at the airfield in lockers.
It would also been helpful to know that glacier boots were provided and they just slip over your shoes, so it really doesn't matter what shoes you have on underneath as long as they are comfortable and you have warm socks. The glacier guide was fun, informative and kept us moving around viewing the various spouts, crevasses to be seen in the 20 minutes before we were picked up. All in all, a wonderful excursion and awesome to see the glacier from above.
A beautiful and must-see scenary!
Part of combo - too short. We should stayed much longer.
Combined City/Glacier Tour offered right as you get off the ship. Skip the "City Tour" part and just go to the Glacier for less money. Glacier was EXCELLENT, city tour not so much.
Absolutely breathtaking. A bit of walking around involved. A very 'structured' access to the glacier. Nice photo ops here. An educational film and a museum like atmosphere and gift shop. Cold wet and raining while we were there in mid August.
great experience on a small boat tour, followed by a stop at Mendenhall
It was a good tour but as I said in my review, the tour bout was only about 200 yards closer to the glacier than the Jewel was. I would have been warm and richer if I had just stayed on the Jewel.