Credit: Shutterstock

Freshly caught salmon & tribe meetings - what it’s like to explore Alaska with Holland America Line

Author: Lucy Abbott

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Immerse yourself in Alaska through a range of enthralling shore excursions, interactive workshops and presentations to expand your mind with a Holland America Line cruise.

If you’re going to explore other-worldly Alaska, then what better cruise line to embark with than one that has been exploring The Great Land since 1947?

To toot Holland America Line’s horn, the brand has thought of literally everything when it comes to ensuring you have a 360-degree experience and immerse yourself in all that Alaska has to offer.

This is all made possible through the new Alaska Up Close programme that delivers a multitude of unique experiences such as getting privileged access to Glacier Bay National Park and learning hidden tips and tricks for how best to prepare a plump fillet of fresh salmon from talented chefs.

Holland America Line has six ships traversing Alaska, and every cruise includes a visit to one or more of Alaska’s iconic glacier destinations – lucky you.

For explorers who want to travel farther, 16 different Cruisetours combine an Alaska cruise with an inland exploration of Denali National Park or the unspoiled reaches of Canada’s Yukon Territory so you can tailor your cruise to you.

With the green light for cruises in Canadian ports, jump at the opportunity to discover this gorgeous area with Holland America Line.

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Alaska Up Close

Taste and experience the real Alaska through authentic experiences onboard and ashore that focus on culture, cuisine and immersive adventures with Alaska Up Close.

You won’t just cruise Glacier Bay, you’ll delve into its ecosystem, meeting interesting locals from native tribe members and National Park Rangers.

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Savour the salmon you caught that day and have it prepared by Holland America Line chefs – our stomachs are already rumbling.

Drink in the knowledge from the pros - Alaska Up Close features local experts and personalities leading workshops and lectures while Explorations Central lets you hear all about the fascinating stories of real Alaskans before indulging in local cuisine served in dining venues throughout the ship.

Holland America Line offers more options to see Glacier Bay National Park & Preserve than any other cruise line. Credit: HAL

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Onboard activities

From stories of Alaskan women working in fields traditionally dominated by men to the story of native Alaskans who are keeping their culture and language alive – go deeper to learn about the Alaskan lifestyle.

The learning doesn’t stop there with HAL – discover the science and history of Alaska’s splendours as naturalists lead workshops and host wildlife spotting on deck.

As a glittering bonus, itineraries that include Glacier Bay National Park will be joined by a Park Ranger and a member of the Huna Tlingit Tribe who will give you a taste of their lifestyle and answer any burning questions.

Be moved by BBC Earth’s Alaska in Concert multimedia performance on the main stage where a live orchestra will play a soul-stirring soundtrack set against a backdrop of mesmerizing footage from the BBC Earth television series “Wild Alaska.”

Be mesmerised by the four seasons and see how this land is as unforgiving as it is beautiful.

Eat like a local onboard and have some time to chew over your newfound knowledge. Through Port to Table programming, delve into the culinary traditions of Alaska via live cooking demonstrations.

Try local flavours at a food and wine tasting, add a new recipe to your repertoire at a live cooking demonstration or indulge your senses at a fine dining event.

Itineraries that include Glacier Bay National Park will be joined by a Park Ranger and a member of the Huna Tlingit Tribe. Credit: Shutterstock

Alaska excursions

Food lovers will find much to explore on an Alaska cruise, and through an array of exclusive FOOD & WINE shore excursions guests can tap into Alaska’s unique gastronomic scene – help yourself to the freshest seafood such as a crab feast or salmon bake, all washed down with a cold glass of craft beer.

Helicopter onto a glacier, spy on whales in their natural habitat, go white-water rafting or embark on a kayak to admire the best scenery around – it’s safe to say that Holland America Line delivers when it comes to excursions in the region.

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If you are sailing on Westerdam, jump at the opportunity to meet and learn about raptors during calls at Sitka – snap a picture with the charismatic Red Tail Hawk or Northern Goshawk.

How can you pass this opportunity up? Discover more and cruise further in 2022 or plan your ‘Bucket list’ Alaska holiday for 2023…

Visit your travel advisor or call 0344 338 8605 to find out more.

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About Lucy Abbott

Lucy is a cruise journalist who has sailed on a variety of ships, from expedition to river – with her favourite being expedition cruising.

Lucy is interested in new sustainable ways to cruise as well as how cruising is becoming accessible for all.

She works together with Kaye Holland to keep the World of Cruising website up to date with all the latest cruise news.