Popular Icy Strait Shore Excursions
ZipRider: Following a scenic mountain ascent (8.5 miles and 40 minutes to the top), come face-to-face with the world's largest ziprider: six chairs across, 6 miles of cable down to the Adventure Center and speeds of up to 60 mph -- it's quite the trip! (You'll often get a great view of your ship from the top.)
Adventure Park & Zipline Course: Shaded by groves of gorgeous trees, the Icy Strait Adventure Park offers more than 60 obstacles across four ability levels for cruisers young and old to explore during their time in port. The course takes an estimated 2.5 hours to complete, though you can spend as much or as little time as you need to navigate the platforms amid the trees.
Native Heritage Center Theater: If folklore is your thing, spend an hour at the theater watching traditionally costumed members of the Huna Tlingit Dancers troupe enact their tribal heritage through song, dance and storytelling.
Cannery Museum: Even if this museum isn't on the top of your to-do list, take a stroll over anyway; its elaborately carved totem poles are well worth a closer look. So, too, is the free-to-enter museum, which is crammed with various historic bits of fish-processing paraphernalia. There are four types of Alaska salmon, which -- together with crab, halibut and black cod -- formed the mainstay of the Tlingit community's fishing industry when the Hoonah Trading Company cannery was founded in 1893.The best way to make sense of the machines is to take a Historical Cannery Tour, on which you'll be given a souvenir timecard before donning a fish-cutter apron and starting a factory worker's "shift" -- which will teach you every stage of the canning process, including can-testing and filling.
Flightseeing over Glacier Bay: This tour lasts nearly two hours. Hourlong flights depart from Hoonah Airport and take passengers across the whale-dense waters of Icy Strait to see the spectacular ice fields, forests, lakes and waterfalls of Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve.
Saltwater Salmon Fishing: This is a three-hour excursion to fish the densely populated stretches of Icy Strait. Warm, waterproof clothing and deck or rubber-soled shoes are essential; the minimum age to participate is 10. Caught fish cannot be stored on your cruise ship but can be locally processed and shipped to your home at extra cost, negotiable and payable onsite.
Whale and Marine Mammals Cruise: This two-hour tour aboard a sightseeing vessel takes passengers 17 miles out through Icy Strait to the Point Adolphus area, a prime feeding ground for humpback and orca whales. An onboard naturalist will offer commentary on the habitat and behaviors of whales and other local wildlife, including stellar sea lions, bald eagles and harbor seals. Wear warm, waterproof clothing and sturdy nonslip shoes for the open-air observation deck. You have an incredible chance of seeing whales around Icy Strait Point, with all but a 100 percent guarantee on sightings.