Whittier is a popular departure point for day trips to the glaciers of Prince William Sound mid-May–late September. Phillips Tours and Cruises (907/276-8023 or 800/544-0529, www.26glaciers.com) operates the 4.5-hour 26-Glacier Cruise for $139 ($79 children). The trip aboard its 340-passenger Klondike Express—a high-speed three-deck catamaran—covers a lot of ground but still allows plenty of time to linger at the faces of several glaciers. A hot lunch is included, there’s a bar on board, and the lounges provide plenty of room inside should the weather be less than perfect. The schedule is timed so that you can ride the train from Anchorage and back (an additional $80) or take a bus (an additional $50).
Prince William Sound Cruises and Tours (907/835-4731 or 800/992-1297, www.princewilliamsound.com) runs a six-hour “Wilderness Explorer” tour ($139 adults, $70 children under 12) that includes Barry Arm (Barry and Cox Glaciers) and Esther Passage. Their four-hour trip to Blackstone Glacier is $109 adults, $55 kids. Lunch is included on both of these tours.
Major Marine Tours (907/274-7300 or 800/764-7300, www.majormarine.com, $118 adults, $64 ages 2–11, younger children free) takes visitors on a leisurely five-hour voyage into stunning Blackstone Bay daily. If you want to include the filling salmon and prime rib buffet, the cruise price is $137 adults, $73 children.
In addition to these large operators, a number of locals offer small-boat trips into Prince William Sound. The prices may be a bit higher, but you get a more personal journey. Recommended companies for sightseeing, fishing, water taxis, and kayak drop-offs are:
- Honey Charters
907/472-2493 or 888/477-2493
Lazy Otter Charters
907/345-1175 or 800/587-6887
Sound Eco Adventures
907/472-2312 or 888/471-2312
© Don Pitcher from Moon Alaska, 10th Edition