Gastineau Guiding supports responsible viewing practices adhering to the Alaska Humpback Whale Approach Regulations and does not intentionally approach whales within 100 yards. Our tours are operated under special use permit in the Tongass National Forest. We are an equal opportunity service provider. Persons with disabilities should inquire at least 48 hours in advance about the specific risks and challenges associated with this tour.
Alaska's Whales, Glaciers & Rainforest Trails
Experience majestic scenery and abundant wildlife on this exclusive Juneau shore excursion that combines a whale watching exploration with an easy hike on a secluded rainforest trail at the Mendenhall Glacier. A small group size sets the stage for a personable and interactive tour. Add one or two of our local experts, Alaska State Certified Interpretive Guides, for an outstanding wilderness adventure. You can relax knowing your guide is with you for the entirety of the tour.
By Sea: Whale Watching
Climb aboard one of our custom safari vessels, designed to optimize your wildlife viewing experience. This stable covered watercraft offers the following unique features: Unobstructed views via large opening panel windows, a low to the water vantage for eye-to-eye wildlife observations, an open stern and bow, and a hydrophone sound system (when occasion permits, you can to listen to underwater sounds made by nearby whales).
Your professional Captain & Naturalist team will help you seek out the variety of area wildlife, be it humpback whales, orcas, porpoises, sea lions, seals, sea birds, and more. You will want to keep a camera handy as you travel quickly from place to place or drift quietly while you observe the behaviors and antics of these fascinating marine residents.
On Land: Easy Rainforest Hike
Stretch your legs on a secluded trail set within a small corner of the Tongass National Forest. Begin your walk on a forested path that will open your eyes to nature's processes by illustrating the many connections between the land and the sea. After a short distance, the canopy gives way to the glacier's moraine with scenic views of the Mendenhall Glacier and Nugget Falls. Spawning salmon, arctic terns, and black bears visit this area each summer providing insights to the life cycle so important to a healthy ecosystem.
Your hike also reveals the forest succession by illustrating various stages of re-growth along the path. There will be stops along the way for interpretation and opportunities to take it all in. Best of all, your travel group is given permitted access to areas not available to other tour groups. Make the most of your Juneau experience with this world-class nature hike and marine exploration combined on a single tour!
- Tour Time:
- 5 hours
- Sea Time:
- 2.25 hours
- Trail Time:
- Approximately 1.25 hours
- Less than 50'
- Bottled water, granola snack and all transportation
- Adult Price:
- Child Price:
WHALE SIGHTINGS ARE GUARANTEED OR EACH GUEST WILL RECEIVE $100 CASH BACK AT THE END OF THE TOUR
Like a good story, this tour is fully-guided from start to finish. Group size is limited to 20, with a 2:10 guide to guest ratio, ensuring a comfortable and interactive atmosphere. Dress warmly and in layers, and wear comfortable yet sturdy walking shoes. Rain ponchos and walking sticks are available for use on the trail. Binoculars, maps and a marine head are available on the vessel. This tour operates in all weather conditions and may run in reverse order.
Select Your Cruise Line to Book this Tour: WHY?
As chosen by Juneau cruise line passengers. Highlights:
- Guaranteed whale watching
- Rainforest trail hike
- Mendenhall Glacier views
- Custom safari vessels
This is truly a unique small-group wilderness experience. There's a great variety of habitats and lots of opportunities to stop and look at the small things that are often overlooked when cruising along on a larger scale tour. – Jessica Smith