Whale Watching & Mendenhall Glacier Photo Safari

Step into Alaska with a naturalist photography guide. You will capture Juneau`s top sites and abundant marine wildlife on the same excursion! Your naturalist photography guide will lead you to local photo hot spots while sharing tips and techniques to help enhance your images. Some of the touches that set this tour apart include: A small group size limited to 14, an informative and entertaining media show, a naturalist photo guide that travels with you throughout the tour, and our unique customized safari vessels that offer the best vantage on the water.

By Land: Guided Trail Walk & Photo Shoot

You’ll enjoy a professional instructional slide show in the vehicle en route to the Mendenhall Glacier. Your photo guide works to inspire and educate while leading you to explore the Trail of Time capturing the natural history of the glacier. Walk an easy permitted trail through the shelter of the forest to photograph the signs of glaciation. Our aim is to step away from the crowds and capture the area`s hidden places before stopping to shoot the glacier itself. The itinerary is personalized and kept flexible in order to allow for those unexpected events that often become the highlights of an Alaskan vacation.

By Sea: Photograph Whales & Marine Wildlife

Next you will board our safari vessel for an unforgettable journey as you learn about life and living in the waterways of Stephens Passage. These boats are designed to get you up close and personal with the environment. The sheltered cabin has large panel windows that open from within to give you unrestricted views while keeping you dry on a rainy day. Padded arm rests fold over the sills to provide a steady platform for photographing marine life and shoreline activity. These are the only crafts of their kind in Southeast Alaska, custom built specifically for marine wildlife photography; there is simply no better vantage available.

On this tour the star of the show is different every day: Wildflowers in bloom, soaring eagles, spawning salmon, light on a foggy glacier, migratory birds, bubble feeding humpback whales, curious sea lions, sleek killer whales, and even lumbering black bears are possibilities. Your guide will provide photo coaching while helping you take full advantage of the opportunities each day presents. Come and learn about Juneau’s natural wonders and colorful history as you strive to capture that decisive moment in the medium worth a thousand words.  Each guest also receives access to a complimentary photo tutorial, “Tips and Pics from Juneau’s Photo Guides”.

View tour details

  • Tour Time: 5 hours
  • Sea Time: 2.25 hours
  • Trail Time: Approximately 1.25 hours
  • Elevation: Less than 50′
  • Difficulty: Easy/Moderate
  • Includes: Water, granola snack and all transportation *We encourage guests to bring a reusable water bottle to minimize plastic use*
  • Adult Price:$219.00
  • Child Price:$219.00


We believe the value of this excursion is built upon the expertise of your guide and the unique sights, vantages and stories provided throughout the tour experience. Group size is limited to 14 participants to create a comfortable and interactive atmosphere. From DSLRs to iPhones and Androids, our instructors works individually with each participant to ensure that everyone’s photographic abilities are improved. Your guide is with you for the entirety of the tour. Make sure your batteries are charged and bring plenty of memory or film. Expect some walking to get the best vantage and experience. Camera towels and rain jackets/ponchos are also provided. This tour operates in all weather conditions and may run in reverse order.

Select Your Cruise Line to Book this Tour : why ?

Reserving shore excursions online is the fastest, most convenient way for you to confirm your tours. Your cruise line will handle the request and in most cases have your tickets waiting in your stateroom when you arrive. If the cruise ship delays or if there is inclement weather, then the shore excursion department will take steps to inform you of any time changes or cancellations. And if your tour runs late, the ship will remain in port or they'll arrange transportation to the next port of call at no expense to you.


As chosen by Juneau cruise line passengers. Highlights:

  • Guaranteed Whale Watching (May 15th – Sept 15th)
  • Mendenhall Glacier views
  • Capture the story of the place
  • Custom Safari Vessels

Guide lines

This tour has three parts to it. Travel time, a photo safari by sea and a trail walk at the Mendenhall Glacier. As a local naturalist and photo guide, I enjoy helping people not only get better pictures but also telling them about things they see on the tour. People really get the opportunity to understand and capture the highlights of Juneau through this tour. – Cam Byrnes

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.