Alaska/Inside Passage Ferries

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Alaska/Inside Passage Ferries

Postby bexonthebeach » Thu Aug 30, 2012 11:29 am

Hiya,

I am looking to do the 2 week tour round Alaska and was hoping to take an extra week beforehand to travel up through the inside passage by ferry.

As I'm travelling on my own, I dont erally fancy (and cant afford!) to take a cruise, so am looking at taking the state ferry along thr Alaska Marine Highway. Has anyone done this?

I am just wondering how easy/safe it is do so as a single female traveller, as the cheapest and most adventurous way would be to sleep overnight on the solarium deck. Do people generally respect ur stuff there? although of course I would use the lockers for most of my stuff, if I had my sleeping bag on a deckchair there and nipped away to the bathroom for example, am I likely to come back and find my sleeping bag thrown overboard and somebody else reclining in my coveted spot?? Or is there an unwritten code of conduct in that kind of situation?

Also, where are the best ports of call along the way? I dont have much time so am either limited to stopping in 2 places briefly or just 1 place for a couple of days. I was thinking either Skagway or Juneau - any suggestions?

What is the leg from Bellingham to Prince Rupert like? I cant decide whether its best to board in Bellingham (which involves a flight to Seattle then a train...) or fly to Port Hardy and get a BC Ferry from there to Prince Rupert then pick up the Alaska ferry, or whether to just fly to Prince Rupert and start from there?? So many choices, I'm just not sure which is going to offer the best value for money and the best experience.

any tips/advice either about the ferries or places along the Inside Passage would be much appreciated :)
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Re: Alaska/Inside Passage Ferries

Postby ExplorerWannaBe » Fri Sep 21, 2012 7:37 am

Can't tell you much about the ferry other than the fact I'd love to take that myself one of these days. I took a regular cruise ship up the Inside Passage and the waters are quite calm. Skagway was a great place to stop; the one thing I did at Juneau was grab a helicopter flight to Mendenhall Glacier -- it was a fun trip but not cheap. I actually liked Sitka better than either of those two stops because of its remoteness, quaint architecture and history.

I would probably recommend Juneau and Sitka so you can get both glaciers and a better appreciation of Alaska's history but Skagway and Sitka would be a good combination too if the glaciers aren't a big draw for you.
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Re: Alaska/Inside Passage Ferries

Postby sinecure » Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:14 pm

bexonthebeach wrote:What is the leg from Bellingham to Prince Rupert like? I cant decide whether its best to board in Bellingham (which involves a flight to Seattle then a train...) or fly to Port Hardy and get a BC Ferry from there to Prince Rupert then pick up the Alaska ferry, or whether to just fly to Prince Rupert and start from there?? So many choices, I'm just not sure which is going to offer the best value for money and the best experience.


Getting from Sea-Tac to Bellingham is fairly easy, there is a QuickShuttle bus that connects the two cities airports and has wifi on board and runs several times per day. The train is equally as easy to get to from Sea-Tac and has some great scenery and wifi on board.

The flight to Port Hardy is basic at best, Prince Rupert is slightly better served by air. But keep in mind these are small towns surrounded by wilderness you are talking about and not big cites.

Let me know if you have any more questions.
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