Travel Talk: Alaska by Land or by Sea

by PlanIt Travel Designs for The Aha! Connection

It’s no surprise that planning your first trip to Alaska can be a bit overwhelming. Alaska is vast and covers over 663,000 square miles. It’s bigger than Texas, California and Montana combined. With a short three month peak travel window, planning well in advance is key in securing better pricing, options and availability in Alaska. Whether you choose to take a cruise or plan a land trip, here are some tips on getting the most out of your trip.

Many people enjoy the ease and comfort that a cruise offers. Do you love the idea of waking up in a new city every morning with a fresh set of adventures awaiting? A cruise may be for you. Cruising is a convenient way to visit multiple cities without worrying about packing and unpacking multiple times or transportation between cities. Plus, all meals and entertainment are included and you have all the amenities of a floating resort. My tips for Alaska cruising:

  • Choose a cross-Gulf rather than a round trip itinerary to allow you to cover more ground in the same amount of time. 
  • Have excursions well planned out to maximize experiences. Think dog-sledding, bear watching, kayaking, whale watching, fishing. And don’t miss the opportunity to see Alaska by air…either helicopter or float plane.

  • Consider a land tour extension so you are also able to see Alaska’s mountains and interior landscapes.

Are you interested in seeing Alaska but not a fan of cruise ships? If you’ve ever considered a trip to Alaska but just don’t want to do a cruise, consider a custom itinerary to one of the many amazing destinations that Alaska has to offer. One huge benefit is that you have endless options and complete control of your itinerary. Two possibilities include flying into Anchorage and traveling by railroad or car through Alaska’s interior or flying into an Inside Passage town and exploring from there. Visiting Denali National Park or Glacier Bay may be on your bucket list. With a land tour, you can build your trip to include all of your Alaska wish-list excursions. Here’s why a land tour might be best for you:

  • You can visit places a cruise ship just cannot reach.
  • With more flexibility, a land tour allows you to fit more excursions into your trip. 
  • You can take advantage of all modes of transportation….  planes, helicopters, cars, boats and the Alaska Railroad’s dome trains.

Alaska is an incredibly breathtaking destination that offers stunning landscapes, wildlife viewing and unlimited adventure. Now is the time to start planning if you are interested in visiting Alaska in 2025!  This is one of those destinations that travelers who book further out will benefit from the best availability options!  

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PlanIt Travel Designs is a member of a travel consortia which offers additional perks to clients at certain hotels and cruise lines.  One of their clients is leaving on an Alaskan cruise this week and PlanIt Travel Designs was able to secure a $300 credit per person for them to use on the cruise ship.  This amount will vary based on the hotel and cruise line.  People that book directly with the cruise line would never get this benefit.