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Cruises to Fairbanks

Scenic view of Downtown Fairbanks, Alaska, USA from across the Chena river (Photo: Mikhail Varentsov/Shutterstock)

About Fairbanks

Fairbanks is in the middle of Alaska and not near the ocean. It gains its "port" status because it's a stop on some Alaska cruise tours -- and so the nickname, "the nation's northernmost cruise port." The northern lights that appear in the sky from August 21 to April 21 are a major draw for cruisers towards the end of the summer season -- along with heartier travelers who journey to see them at their brightest in the dead of winter.

Alaska's second-largest city after Anchorage, Fairbanks has a regional population just under 100,000 people -- and 16,000 moose, which you might see wandering at their leisure. The comfortable, casual, laid-back atmosphere lends a feeling of being in a small town. Surrounded by the beauty of wilderness, friendly locals graciously share stories about their lives, such as subsistence hunting and fishing, and how they deal with temperature extremes that fluctuate with the seasons between 90 and -40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Fairbanks is a fount of information for cruise passengers curious about the Gold Rush and exploring local Athabascan culture. You may walk among reindeer, hike tundra and boreal forests, sample craft beers at numerous local breweries, soak in hot springs and find Christmas attractions in nearby North Pole. Fairbanks has an active year-round arts community, which has led to painted murals and decorated ventilation drainpipes downtown. These, and the famous antler arch at the visitor center, are among popular photogenic sights.

In summer (prime cruise season), with the midnight sun and nearly 24 hours of sunlight, everyone is outdoors, and Fairbanks takes on a lively atmosphere, with beautiful gardens, farmers market and food trucks as part of the scene.

Fairbanks also is the gateway for exploration of Arctic Alaska, with day trips or overnights on the Dalton Highway north to above the Arctic Circle.


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  • 15 Night
    Cruise to Fairbanks

    Leaving:
    Vancouver
    Visiting:
    Ketchikan, Wrangell ... see more
    Cruise Line:
    Windstar Cruises
    View Deal
    View Cruise Info
    Hide Cruise Info
    • Itinerary
    • Ship Details
    • Reviews
    • Cabin Comparison
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    • Fare Includes
    Itinerary

    Cruise Itinerary

    15 Night Cruise to Fairbanks Route (Windstar Cruises)
    • Day 1
      Vancouver
    • Day 2
      Cruising
    • Day 3
      Ketchikan
    • Day 4
      Cruising
    • Day 5
      Wrangell
    • Day 6
      Tracy Arm (Cruising)
    • Day 7
      Juneau
    • Day 8
      Haines
    • Day 9
      Sitka
    • Day 10
      Cruising
    • Day 11
      Kenai
    • Day 12
      Seward
    • Day 12
      Talkeetna
    • Day 13
      Denali
    • Day 14
      Denali
    • Day 15
      Fairbanks
    • Day 16
      Fairbanks
    Ship Details

    Star Breeze - Windstar Cruises

    Pros

    Small-ship cruising, port-intensive itineraries

    Cons

    Limited entertainment and enrichment activities

    Bottom Line

    Terrific upscale yet casual cruise line for active travelers

    Reviews

    Star Breeze Reviews

    Cruise Critic Editor Ratings
    Overall
    4.0/5
    Cabins5.0
    Dining4.0
    Service4.0
    Value4.0

    The 212-passenger Star Breeze, which joined Windstar's fleet in May 2015, is a yacht-style smal...

    Cruise Critic Member Ratings
    Middlesister63
    Sail Date Jan 2019
    Panama Canal-Wonderful Cruise with Friends Bucket List
    Read More
    plight0
    Sail Date Jul 2019
    Desperately ready for an overhaul
    Read More
    Cabin Comparison

    Compare Cabin Prices

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    Call to plan your cruise 866-501-1694 866-501-1694
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    Fare Includes

    What’s included in My Cruise Fare?

    • Cabin
      Room with bed and private bathroom
    • Port Taxes & Fees
    • Service Gratuities
    • Most Onboard Entertainment
    • Kids Club
    • Shore Excursions
    • Wi-Fi
    • Spa Services
    • Select Dining
      Main dining room and/or buffet
    • Specialty Alternative Dining
    • Room Service
    • Butler Service
    • Basic Drinks
      Still water, coffee, and tea
    • Soft Drinks
      Soda and Juice
    • Alcohol
      Beer, wine, and spirits
    • Specialty Coffee Drinks
      Including smoothies and blended drinks
    • Specialty Fitness Classes

    ** inclusions in your cruise fare are based on Cruise Critic’s editorial expertise and not provided by the individual cruise lines. When you book with one of our cruise partners, please be sure to check their site for a full disclosure of all applicable fees. Cruise Critic does not guarantee any specific rates, prices, or amenities included in the fare. Inclusion items in the fare may change at any time and fees may apply for additional items.

  • 15 Night
    Cruise to Fairbanks

    Leaving:
    Vancouver
    Visiting:
    Ketchikan, Wrangell ... see more
    Cruise Line:
    Windstar Cruises
    View Deal
    View Cruise Info
    Hide Cruise Info
    • Itinerary
    • Ship Details
    • Reviews
    • Cabin Comparison
    • View All Prices
    • Fare Includes
    Itinerary

    Cruise Itinerary

    15 Night Cruise to Fairbanks Route (Windstar Cruises)
    • Day 1
      Vancouver
    • Day 2
      Cruising
    • Day 3
      Ketchikan
    • Day 4
      Cruising
    • Day 5
      Wrangell
    • Day 6
      Juneau
    • Day 7
      Haines
    • Day 8
      Tracy Arm (Cruising)
    • Day 9
      Sitka
    • Day 10
      Cruising
    • Day 11
      Kenai
    • Day 12
      Seward
    • Day 12
      Talkeetna
    • Day 13
      Denali
    • Day 14
      Denali
    • Day 15
      Fairbanks
    • Day 16
      Fairbanks
    Ship Details

    Star Breeze - Windstar Cruises

    Pros

    Small-ship cruising, port-intensive itineraries

    Cons

    Limited entertainment and enrichment activities

    Bottom Line

    Terrific upscale yet casual cruise line for active travelers

    Reviews

    Star Breeze Reviews

    Cruise Critic Editor Ratings
    Overall
    4.0/5
    Cabins5.0
    Dining4.0
    Service4.0
    Value4.0

    The 212-passenger Star Breeze, which joined Windstar's fleet in May 2015, is a yacht-style smal...

    Cruise Critic Member Ratings
    REO
    Sail Date Mar 2019
    Had a Wonderful Cruise
    Read More
    Jackrosie
    Sail Date Mar 2019
    Great
    Read More
    Cabin Comparison

    Compare Cabin Prices

    No Results Found
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    Compare Prices

    Call to plan your cruise 866-501-1694 866-501-1694
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    Fare Includes

    What’s included in My Cruise Fare?

    • Cabin
      Room with bed and private bathroom
    • Port Taxes & Fees
    • Service Gratuities
    • Most Onboard Entertainment
    • Kids Club
    • Shore Excursions
    • Wi-Fi
    • Spa Services
    • Select Dining
      Main dining room and/or buffet
    • Specialty Alternative Dining
    • Room Service
    • Butler Service
    • Basic Drinks
      Still water, coffee, and tea
    • Soft Drinks
      Soda and Juice
    • Alcohol
      Beer, wine, and spirits
    • Specialty Coffee Drinks
      Including smoothies and blended drinks
    • Specialty Fitness Classes

    ** inclusions in your cruise fare are based on Cruise Critic’s editorial expertise and not provided by the individual cruise lines. When you book with one of our cruise partners, please be sure to check their site for a full disclosure of all applicable fees. Cruise Critic does not guarantee any specific rates, prices, or amenities included in the fare. Inclusion items in the fare may change at any time and fees may apply for additional items.

  • 11 Night
    Cruise to Fairbanks

    Leaving:
    Fairbanks
    Visiting:
    Denali, Talkeetna ... see more
    Cruise Line:
    Windstar Cruises
    View Deal
    View Cruise Info
    Hide Cruise Info
    • Itinerary
    • Ship Details
    • Reviews
    • Cabin Comparison
    • View All Prices
    • Fare Includes
    Itinerary

    Cruise Itinerary

    11 Night Cruise to Fairbanks Route (Windstar Cruises)
    • Day 1
      Fairbanks
    • Day 2
      Denali
    • Day 3
      Denali
    • Day 4
      Talkeetna
    • Day 5
      Talkeetna
    • Day 6
      Tracy Arm (Cruising)
    • Day 7
      Lynn Canal
    • Day 8
      Sitka
    • Day 9
      Cruising
    • Day 10
      Ketchikan
    • Day 11
      Cruising
    • Day 12
      Vancouver
    Ship Details

    Star Breeze - Windstar Cruises

    Pros

    Small-ship cruising, port-intensive itineraries

    Cons

    Limited entertainment and enrichment activities

    Bottom Line

    Terrific upscale yet casual cruise line for active travelers

    Reviews

    Star Breeze Reviews

    Cruise Critic Editor Ratings
    Overall
    4.0/5
    Cabins5.0
    Dining4.0
    Service4.0
    Value4.0

    The 212-passenger Star Breeze, which joined Windstar's fleet in May 2015, is a yacht-style smal...

    Cruise Critic Member Ratings
    kimleg11
    Sail Date Mar 2019
    Travel Group on Windstar
    Read More
    CruiseOrLand
    Sail Date Jan 2019
    Daylight Passage of the Panama Canal
    Read More
    Cabin Comparison

    Compare Cabin Prices

    No Results Found
    Loading...
    View All Prices

    Compare Prices

    Call to plan your cruise 866-501-1694 866-501-1694
    Loading...
    Fare Includes

    What’s included in My Cruise Fare?

    • Cabin
      Room with bed and private bathroom
    • Port Taxes & Fees
    • Service Gratuities
    • Most Onboard Entertainment
    • Kids Club
    • Shore Excursions
    • Wi-Fi
    • Spa Services
    • Select Dining
      Main dining room and/or buffet
    • Specialty Alternative Dining
    • Room Service
    • Butler Service
    • Basic Drinks
      Still water, coffee, and tea
    • Soft Drinks
      Soda and Juice
    • Alcohol
      Beer, wine, and spirits
    • Specialty Coffee Drinks
      Including smoothies and blended drinks
    • Specialty Fitness Classes

    ** inclusions in your cruise fare are based on Cruise Critic’s editorial expertise and not provided by the individual cruise lines. When you book with one of our cruise partners, please be sure to check their site for a full disclosure of all applicable fees. Cruise Critic does not guarantee any specific rates, prices, or amenities included in the fare. Inclusion items in the fare may change at any time and fees may apply for additional items.

  • 15 Night
    Cruise to Fairbanks

    Leaving:
    Fairbanks
    Visiting:
    Denali, Talkeetna ... see more
    Cruise Line:
    Windstar Cruises
    View Deal
    View Cruise Info
    Hide Cruise Info
    • Itinerary
    • Ship Details
    • Reviews
    • Cabin Comparison
    • View All Prices
    • Fare Includes
    Itinerary

    Cruise Itinerary

    15 Night Cruise to Fairbanks Route (Windstar Cruises)
    • Day 1
      Fairbanks
    • Day 2
      Denali
    • Day 3
      Denali
    • Day 4
      Talkeetna
    • Day 5
      Talkeetna
    • Day 6
      College Fjord
    • Day 7
      Valdez
    • Day 8
      Icy Bay
    • Day 9
      Cruising
    • Day 9
      Icy Strait
    • Day 10
      Tracy Arm (Cruising)
    • Day 11
      Juneau
    • Day 12
      Petersburg
    • Day 13
      Wrangell
    • Day 14
      Ketchikan
    • Day 15
      Cruising
    • Day 16
      Vancouver
    Ship Details

    Star Breeze - Windstar Cruises

    Pros

    Small-ship cruising, port-intensive itineraries

    Cons

    Limited entertainment and enrichment activities

    Bottom Line

    Terrific upscale yet casual cruise line for active travelers

    Reviews

    Star Breeze Reviews

    Cruise Critic Editor Ratings
    Overall
    4.0/5
    Cabins5.0
    Dining4.0
    Service4.0
    Value4.0

    The 212-passenger Star Breeze, which joined Windstar's fleet in May 2015, is a yacht-style smal...

    Cruise Critic Member Ratings
    kafgill
    Sail Date Feb 2019
    Interesting Panama Canal Cruise!
    Read More
    sjefferson
    Sail Date Jan 2019
    Small Ship, Big Service
    Read More
    Cabin Comparison

    Compare Cabin Prices

    No Results Found
    Loading...
    View All Prices

    Compare Prices

    Call to plan your cruise 866-501-1694 866-501-1694
    Loading...
    Fare Includes

    What’s included in My Cruise Fare?

    • Cabin
      Room with bed and private bathroom
    • Port Taxes & Fees
    • Service Gratuities
    • Most Onboard Entertainment
    • Kids Club
    • Shore Excursions
    • Wi-Fi
    • Spa Services
    • Select Dining
      Main dining room and/or buffet
    • Specialty Alternative Dining
    • Room Service
    • Butler Service
    • Basic Drinks
      Still water, coffee, and tea
    • Soft Drinks
      Soda and Juice
    • Alcohol
      Beer, wine, and spirits
    • Specialty Coffee Drinks
      Including smoothies and blended drinks
    • Specialty Fitness Classes

    ** inclusions in your cruise fare are based on Cruise Critic’s editorial expertise and not provided by the individual cruise lines. When you book with one of our cruise partners, please be sure to check their site for a full disclosure of all applicable fees. Cruise Critic does not guarantee any specific rates, prices, or amenities included in the fare. Inclusion items in the fare may change at any time and fees may apply for additional items.

  • 15 Night
    Cruise to Fairbanks

    Leaving:
    Fairbanks
    Visiting:
    Denali, Talkeetna ... see more
    Cruise Line:
    Windstar Cruises
    View Deal
    View Cruise Info
    Hide Cruise Info
    • Itinerary
    • Ship Details
    • Reviews
    • Cabin Comparison
    • View All Prices
    • Fare Includes
    Itinerary

    Cruise Itinerary

    15 Night Cruise to Fairbanks Route (Windstar Cruises)
    • Day 1
      Fairbanks
    • Day 2
      Denali
    • Day 3
      Denali
    • Day 4
      Talkeetna
    • Day 5
      Talkeetna
    • Day 6
      Kenai
    • Day 7
      Cruising
    • Day 8
      Sitka
    • Day 9
      Juneau
    • Day 10
      Haines
    • Day 11
      Tracy Arm (Cruising)
    • Day 12
      Wrangell
    • Day 13
      Cruising
    • Day 14
      Ketchikan
    • Day 15
      Cruising
    • Day 16
      Vancouver
    Ship Details

    Star Breeze - Windstar Cruises

    Pros

    Small-ship cruising, port-intensive itineraries

    Cons

    Limited entertainment and enrichment activities

    Bottom Line

    Terrific upscale yet casual cruise line for active travelers

    Reviews

    Star Breeze Reviews

    Cruise Critic Editor Ratings
    Overall
    4.0/5
    Cabins5.0
    Dining4.0
    Service4.0
    Value4.0

    The 212-passenger Star Breeze, which joined Windstar's fleet in May 2015, is a yacht-style smal...

    Cruise Critic Member Ratings
    WanderingKiwi
    Sail Date Nov 2018
    Value based cruising on very old ships
    Read More
    ATravelinFoodie
    Sail Date Dec 2018
    Excellent Crew, Good Sized Rooms, Star Breeze Panama Canal Aruba-Costa Rica
    Read More
    Cabin Comparison

    Compare Cabin Prices

    No Results Found
    Loading...
    View All Prices

    Compare Prices

    Call to plan your cruise 866-501-1694 866-501-1694
    Loading...
    Fare Includes

    What’s included in My Cruise Fare?

    • Cabin
      Room with bed and private bathroom
    • Port Taxes & Fees
    • Service Gratuities
    • Most Onboard Entertainment
    • Kids Club
    • Shore Excursions
    • Wi-Fi
    • Spa Services
    • Select Dining
      Main dining room and/or buffet
    • Specialty Alternative Dining
    • Room Service
    • Butler Service
    • Basic Drinks
      Still water, coffee, and tea
    • Soft Drinks
      Soda and Juice
    • Alcohol
      Beer, wine, and spirits
    • Specialty Coffee Drinks
      Including smoothies and blended drinks
    • Specialty Fitness Classes

    ** inclusions in your cruise fare are based on Cruise Critic’s editorial expertise and not provided by the individual cruise lines. When you book with one of our cruise partners, please be sure to check their site for a full disclosure of all applicable fees. Cruise Critic does not guarantee any specific rates, prices, or amenities included in the fare. Inclusion items in the fare may change at any time and fees may apply for additional items.

  • 15 Night
    Cruise to Fairbanks

    Leaving:
    Fairbanks
    Visiting:
    Denali, Talkeetna ... see more
    Cruise Line:
    Windstar Cruises
    View Deal
    View Cruise Info
    Hide Cruise Info
    • Itinerary
    • Ship Details
    • Reviews
    • Cabin Comparison
    • View All Prices
    • Fare Includes
    Itinerary

    Cruise Itinerary

    15 Night Cruise to Fairbanks Route (Windstar Cruises)
    • Day 1
      Fairbanks
    • Day 2
      Denali
    • Day 3
      Denali
    • Day 4
      Talkeetna
    • Day 5
      Talkeetna
    • Day 6
      College Fjord
    • Day 7
      Valdez
    • Day 8
      Icy Bay
    • Day 9
      Cruising
    • Day 9
      Icy Strait
    • Day 10
      Tracy Arm (Cruising)
    • Day 11
      Juneau
    • Day 12
      Petersburg
    • Day 13
      Wrangell
    • Day 14
      Ketchikan
    • Day 15
      Cruising
    • Day 16
      Vancouver
    Ship Details

    Star Breeze - Windstar Cruises

    Pros

    Small-ship cruising, port-intensive itineraries

    Cons

    Limited entertainment and enrichment activities

    Bottom Line

    Terrific upscale yet casual cruise line for active travelers

    Reviews

    Star Breeze Reviews

    Cruise Critic Editor Ratings
    Overall
    4.0/5
    Cabins5.0
    Dining4.0
    Service4.0
    Value4.0

    The 212-passenger Star Breeze, which joined Windstar's fleet in May 2015, is a yacht-style smal...

    Cruise Critic Member Ratings
    Arling2nGal
    Sail Date Oct 2018
    Great Itinerary!
    Read More
    Treb1
    Sail Date Oct 2018
    Only average cruise
    Read More
    Cabin Comparison

    Compare Cabin Prices

    No Results Found
    Loading...
    View All Prices

    Compare Prices

    Call to plan your cruise 866-501-1694 866-501-1694
    Loading...
    Fare Includes

    What’s included in My Cruise Fare?

    • Cabin
      Room with bed and private bathroom
    • Port Taxes & Fees
    • Service Gratuities
    • Most Onboard Entertainment
    • Kids Club
    • Shore Excursions
    • Wi-Fi
    • Spa Services
    • Select Dining
      Main dining room and/or buffet
    • Specialty Alternative Dining
    • Room Service
    • Butler Service
    • Basic Drinks
      Still water, coffee, and tea
    • Soft Drinks
      Soda and Juice
    • Alcohol
      Beer, wine, and spirits
    • Specialty Coffee Drinks
      Including smoothies and blended drinks
    • Specialty Fitness Classes

    ** inclusions in your cruise fare are based on Cruise Critic’s editorial expertise and not provided by the individual cruise lines. When you book with one of our cruise partners, please be sure to check their site for a full disclosure of all applicable fees. Cruise Critic does not guarantee any specific rates, prices, or amenities included in the fare. Inclusion items in the fare may change at any time and fees may apply for additional items.

More about Fairbanks

Why go to Fairbanks?

Pros: Friendly locals; hidden gems for history buffs and foodies.

Cons: Many key sights are not in downtown.

Bottom Line: Fairbanks is a great introduction to life in Alaska's vast interior.

Fairbanks Cruise Port Facilities

There are no port facilities in Fairbanks. Though the ocean is hundreds of miles away, an estimated 162,000 cruise passengers visit Fairbanks each year on various cruise tours and pre- and post-cruise extensions.

Good to Know

When you wander around town, check out the parking lots. Many have electric outlets where people plug in the heater engine block in their cars overnight in winter, so they start up even when it dips well below zero. Summer travelers, of course, have no such needs, but if you return in winter, make certain your rental car is equipped with an extension cord.

Getting Around

On Foot: If you're at a downtown hotel, it's an easy walk to shops, restaurants, galleries and the Morris Thompson Cultural and Visitors Center. Downtown is small and easily explored on foot.

By Bus: Most hotels offer shuttle bus service from the airport and from the Alaska Railroad depot. Your hotel will either be downtown or nearby, with shuttle service (for a small fee) available between top sights -- and also stop at the Fred Meyer store in case you've forgotten to pack anything.

A public bus system, MACS Transit, operated by the Fairbanks North Star Borough, includes service from the airport, around Fairbanksand also to the North Pole.

By Taxi: Taxis are plentiful, cheap and metered. There are rideshare options (Uber and Lyft) too.

By Rental Car: Rental cars are available at the airport and include brands such as Enterprise, along with local operators, such as Alaska Auto Rental and GoNorth Alaska.

Currency & Best Way to Get Money

Currency is the U.S. dollar. Your credit cards and cash cards are accepted here. There are ATMs at the airport, in hotel lobbies and around town.

Language

English is spoken here.


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