ALASKA YACHT CHARTER GUIDE
CRUISE INTO THE WILDERNESS THROUGH THE INSIDE PASSAGE OF ALASKA – A CHARTER IN THIS PART OF THE WORLD IS AKIN TO EXPLORING THE FINAL FRONTIER
Awe-inspiring and breathtaking, Alaska — the northernmost state of the United States — is home to a lush, yet rugged natural landscape that offers some of the most incredible scenery in the world. Cruise past glaciers, witness wild animals, including bears, whales and eagles, in their natural habitats, catch fresh salmon and hike mountains. Quickly becoming an “it” destination for adventurous cruisers who want to experience nature at its most pristine, the tranquility and rawness of the Alaskan wilderness are an incredible backdrop for a luxury yacht charter.
Alaska’s Inside Passage snakes up between the mainland and off-lying islands and islets to the southeast. This scenic stretch of coastline has become the most popular cruising area in Alaska. It is as far removed as you can get from the favored Mediterranean and Caribbean cruising grounds. Despite its popularity, Alaska is the largest state in the U.S. both in terms of land and water, and as such the area is so vast that you can steer a solitary route much of the time, enjoying the complete wilderness all to yourself.
A charter in this region typically begins across the border in Canada’s Vancouver or Seattle, Washington, in the U.S. before cruising up the coastline and across the border into Alaska; alternatively, you can choose to board your luxury yacht in Alaska’s capital, Juneau. Wherever you choose to embark, as soon as you set sail the world drifts far into the distance as you forget the noise, speed and drama of 21st century life. Here it is all about timeless, majestic landscapes and the remarkable wildlife that has inhabited the area for thousands of years. From ancient snowfields, glaciers and fjords to soaring eagles in lofty mountains and bears in dense forests to pods of whales escorting you through the wilds of America’s 49th state, Alaska, is one of the world’s most serene and spectacular cruising grounds.
- Hike along trails to the freshwater Beaver Lake around Desolation Sound
- Hunt for oysters and clams in the warm waters of Desolation Sound Marine Park
- Scuba dive around Pender Harbour, oft referred to as the “Venice of the North” thanks to its complex maze of islands, coves and reefs
- Kayak through the freshwater streams and lakes surrounding Pender Harbour
- Host a fishing weekend on the Campbell River – the salmon capital of the Northwest
- Explore the dramatic scenery of Chatterbox Falls, Vancouver Island
Fly from your yacht to a fly fishing lodge for a day or even an afternoon of terrific fly fishing. These lodges are outfitted with everything needed, including a wide range of fishing gear. Fly fishing guides are available to take you up the local streams where salmon are running – here you will find some of the world’s apex fly fishing. Even novices will enjoy the beauty of the wilderness and excitement of the “running” salmon.
JUNEAU TO HOLKHAM BAY (40 NAUTICAL MILES)
Deep in southeast Alaska, Juneau is an enchanting point of entry to the remote Inside Passage. Cruise to Holkham Bay, aka the “Iceberg Graveyard.” It is here where icebergs leave the fjord and melt in the open waters, making for some impressive sights as large chunks of ice drift around the bay.
HOLKHAM BAY TO ENDICOTT ARM (21 NAUTICAL MILES)
Cruise to Endicott Arm, home to the magnificent Dawes Glacier. Explore the local waters by kayak, spotting all manner of sea life as you go; it’s a great place to whale-spot and see calving glaciers.
ENDICOTT ARM TO THE BROTHERS (47 NAUTICAL MILES)
The two Brothers islands provide ample opportunity to view local wildlife. The two tiny islands are a gentle introduction to the environment you will encounter during your cruise. Drifting in such a remote location brings you up close to intriguing creatures in their natural habitats. Step ashore to explore the rugged landscape, spotting river otters and deer.
DAYS 4 & 5
THE BROTHERS TO BARANOF ISLAND (48 NAUTICAL MILES)
Spend the next few days exploring Baranof Island. One of three major islands in the Tongass National Forest, it is home to the world’s highest concentration of bears, largely thanks to the island’s glut of salmon streams. Hike the lakes and take a dip in the Baranof Warm Springs
BARANOF ISLAND TO SITKA (80 NAUTICAL MILES)
Cruise the twisting Sergius Narrows, passing serene forested islands as you go. Take out the binoculars to spot bald eagles and black-tailed deer along the coastline. Alaska’s most beautiful port, Sitka has been settled for thousands of years and today is largely sustained by fishing and tourism.
DAYS 7 & 8
SITKA TO POINT ADOLPHUS (110 NAUTICAL MILES)
From the stunning anchorage of Sitka, head to Port Adolphus and prepare for an encounter with humpback whales as you cruise through the intricate waterways of the Icy Straight with an expert guide. Stand on deck to watch for these incredible giants which are a daily sight in these waters.
DAYS 9 & 10
POINT ADOLPHUS TO GLACIER BAY NATIONAL PARK (23 NAUTICAL MILES)
Accompanied by a park ranger, spend a few days cruising around the Glacier Bay National Park, heading up to the Grand Pacific and Margerie glaciers. Just two centuries ago, Glacier Bay was covered with ice, but over time the massive glacier, more than 1,000 meters thick, 20 miles wide and 100 miles long, has retreated some 60 miles to form a bay. Today the Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve is home to a glacial ecosystem in all its glory – along with one of its larger visitors, the humpback whale.