From Cache

Best Alaska Wildlife Tours

Published: Jan 01, 2021
Last Updated: Nov 30, 2023

If we had to describe Alaska with just one word, it’d probably be wild. The Last Frontier boasts some of the most beautiful scenes nature has composed, with a bevy of beasts and a cacophony of creatures large and small. So, are you ready to get wild? We’d love to help.

Read on for our picks for the best Alaska wildlife tours:

1. Ketchikan Rainforest Wildlife Center and Eagle Sanctuary

Port: Ketchikan

wildlife sanctuary

This tour starts with a magnificent hike into the exclusive Alaska Rainforest Sanctuary, a private reserve that’s home to bald eagles, black bears, seals, and many other species. Your naturalist with guide you through the heart of the dense forest, walking on the spongy forest floor that’s covered with mosses, wildflowers, and a variety of berries. At the end of the half-mile hike you’ll visit the Alaska Wildlife Foundation where you can see and photograph live eagles and other raptors up-close, interact with and feed reindeer, and observe a master native totem pole carver at work.

2. Juneau Whale Watching & Mendenhall Glacier Tour

Port: Juneau

Do you dream of witnessing a majestic humpback whale in its natural environment? This tour guarantees that your dream will come true, or your money back! You’ll also be in search of killer whales, sea lions, porpoises, and much more as you enjoy the open water from our comfortable and custom-designed boats. With plenty of time out on the water, you're sure to see an array of spouts, tails, breaches, and more. Then it’s off to the world-famous Mendenhall Glacier. You’ll take in this mighty river of ice with 45 minutes to explore the walking paths that surround it as well as the U.S. Forest Service Visitor Center, with its wealth of knowledge. Make sure you bring your camera to snap photos of black bears feeding on wild Alaskan salmon!

3. Icy Strait Wildlife & Bear Search Tour

Port: Icy Strait

bear in water

Chichagof Island has been named "Bear Island" by National Geographic because it has the highest concentration of bears in the world. This exclusive small group tour will give you a flexible, up-close experience as you search for bears whilst viewing muskeg, an old growth forest; and a variety of other wildlife species, including mink, marten, red squirrels, otter, beaver, ducks, seabirds, Sitka blacktail deer, and plenty of bald eagles. Your experienced wildlife guide will know all of the spots to see these amazing creatures, as well as sharing all kinds of information about the area and its indigenous people.

4. Glacier Point Wilderness Safari Tour

Port: Skagway

This excursion will start aboard a boat that’s custom designed to provide and up-close sightseeing expedition. You’ll journey through the deepest fjord in North America, spotting seals, whales, and cascading waterfalls. Next up, it’s canoe time! After a venturous drive over glacial moraines, you’ll board a voyager canoe for a paddle around the lake and then enjoy a picnic-style lunch on a secluded Alaskan beach.

5. Skagway Wildlife Safari & Bear Viewing Tour

Port: Skagway

Departing from Skagway, this tour takes you on a wildlife adventure to the small town of Haines. You will start your trip with a narrated drive through the famous Fort Seward, the first military base in Alaska. See the Chilkoot Valley on your way to the Chilkoot River paired with coastal views along the longest fjord in North America. Due to the sheer amount of salmon swimming through the Chilkoot River, bears are never far from the banks! You can expect to see anything from brown bears, mountain goats, salmon, river otters, and bald eagles. With a seaside picnic followed by a trip to the mouth of the river, this tour is sure to amaze wildlife lovers and nature aficionados alike.