How To Get Up Close To The Sawyer Glacier in Alaska

How to get up close to the sawyer glacier in Alaska

The Sawyer Glacier in the Tracy Arm Fjord is so beautiful, especially when you get up close. If you go on a cruise that includes Tracy Arm Fjord scenic cruising you may have the opportunity to go on a tour and get up close to the Sawyer Glacier.

I would recommend doing this. It is a separate tour to the onboard scenic cruising and it is one of the best tours I have been on! You embark small boat from the cruise ship, well not that small, it still held around 100 or more people but a lot smaller than the cruise ship!

You sail right up to the north and south Sawyer Glaciers. And see so much more than you would just scenic cruising onboard.

I could not believe how much ice there was and icebergs floating in the water. We were just sailing into them!


The crew were fantastic on the tour. There were the captain, engineer and boat crew, the naturalist and the bar staff. The naturalist gave loads of great information about the glaciers and the ports in Alaska.

The captain and his crew got us so close the Sawyer Glacier through the iceberg-filled water and up close to some waterfalls. They were all very friendly and helpful and looked like they really enjoyed their jobs.



The day we were there it was very cold and raining so you felt it even more. I enjoyed the scenery so much I didn’t really notice it was raining, apart from wiping my camera lens, phone screen and glasses!


I would recommend a Waterproof Case cover for your phone to protect from the rain like this one from Amazon!


What did I wear?

On this tour, I wore jeans, my snow boots, thermal long sleeve tee, The North Face fleece, waterproof feather stuffed jacket, cashmere scarf, The North Face gloves and a fake fur lined hat. These items of clothing kept me warm throughout the tour.

You may also enjoy reading my Top 10 Packing Tips for an Alaskan Cruise.

Top 10 Packing Tips for an Alaskan Cruise

It was a magical experience and this was one of my top ten tours around the world. I think I will write a blog post on that in the future!

We sailed from the glacier all the way to Juneau and the tour was 6 hours long. The scenery was beautiful sailing through the fjords.


At the glacier, there were seals sitting on the icebergs and we even saw a few whales very close to the boat and flip their tails!



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Sailing through Tracy Arm Fjord on the Cruise Ship

Watching the scenic cruising through Tracy Arm Fjord from the ship is beautiful and you still see a lot. But as huge cruise ship cannot get up close to the Sawyer Glacier you can only see it from a distance.

On the cruise, I was on I was on deck in the morning at 7 am to 10 am, watching the sail in through Tracy Arm Fjord to reach the Sawyer Glacier.

This area has not been touched by man and is completely unspoilt. It is breathtaking how beautiful it is. The mountains are right there in front of you.

The icebergs in the water were so blue. The trees are growing on the rocky mountains and the are glaciers wedged in between the mountains is amazing. The mist is just below the mountain tops and the water is so green.

Which is the better way to see Tracy Arm Fjord?

I liked both ways, but seeing the Sawyer Glacier up close and sailing through the ice for me was amazing and I would recommend it.


Essential Info

  • Weather: 5*C to 9*C and a high chance of rain
  • Language: English
  • Currency: US Dollar
  • Recommendations: Wrap up warm as this will be the coldest part of the cruise.

If you enjoyed reading, please share on social media so your friends and family can read too! Sharing is caring!

Have you been to Tracy Arm Fjord? Do you have any recommendations?

Happy Travels

Love Lucy x


(L. Williams is a participant in the Amazon EU Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to, at no extra cost, to you).

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  1. September 21, 2017 / 7:25 am

    That looks a beautiful site to visit. Nice photos too. Loved the way you described the place.

    • September 21, 2017 / 9:31 pm

      Thank you very much 😀 The glacier is gorgeous up close &
      very cold! ❄️❄️❄️

  2. September 23, 2017 / 6:51 pm

    Wow, this looks incredible! We have been wanting to do an Alaskan cruise for years just haven’t got around to it yet. Can’t wait to go!

    • September 23, 2017 / 10:48 pm

      You must make the time to go, it is a great experience ☃️

  3. September 23, 2017 / 7:34 pm

    Omg I love this! I just came back from Alaska and we did a glacier day tour as well and got to see two and a bunch of wildlife! I love how you included what you wore!

    • September 23, 2017 / 10:48 pm

      Wasn’t it a fantastic tour! I loved every minute! Thank you I thought it would be helpful 😉

  4. September 23, 2017 / 11:30 pm

    What a fantastic scenery, I have yet to discover such arctic landscapes, and a cruise near glaciers in Alaska, wow, sounds like a dream! You are lucky. And so awesome to have seen whales!

  5. September 24, 2017 / 2:45 am

    Omg the whales!!! Awesome! I’d love to visit one day

  6. September 24, 2017 / 3:45 am

    I’ve honestly never thought about doing an Alaskan cruise but your beautiful photos have me convinced that I need to add it to my bucket list! Definitely gonna share this with my friends so I can get them all on board with this fun little trip idea!

    • September 24, 2017 / 4:09 am

      Thank you 😊 If you go cruising with friends in Alaska you will have a great time!

  7. September 24, 2017 / 9:14 am

    This is making me miss home so much! It’s sad I haven’t seen as much of Alaska as I want. As a local, I totally approve of your packing list and general tips! Beautiful photos!

    • September 24, 2017 / 4:45 pm

      Thank you very much, Susanna! I hope you get to go back soon and see more of your local area.

  8. carrieemann
    September 24, 2017 / 2:35 pm

    Whales!?!? Seeing them would make it totally worth the entire trip. The glacier looks incredible as well, and good to know that you can only see it from a smaller boat.

    • September 24, 2017 / 4:39 pm

      You will always see whales in Alaska! It is lovely to see them so close!

  9. September 25, 2017 / 3:02 pm

    Glaciers never cease to amaze me. They’re giant frozen rivers and that’s pretty awesome. I’m glad you enjoyed it all despite the weather being a little nasty!

    • September 25, 2017 / 4:29 pm

      They are amazing! We are so lucky we can still see them ❄️

  10. September 25, 2017 / 5:56 pm

    I’ve seen many glaciers in my life, but never one like this! That feeling to be so close to all the ice and the wales and seals must be so wonderful. I’m not a huge fan of cruises, but this is something I would do without hesitating <3

  11. September 26, 2017 / 2:08 am

    So dying of envy with your whale photos. I am also excited for forthcoming whale watching trip in December in Sri Lanka. I hope I get good photos like you have!

    • September 26, 2017 / 8:09 pm

      Have a lovely time in Sri Lanka & I hope the whales get close for you! 🐳

  12. September 26, 2017 / 12:45 pm

    This looks really beautiful and like a lifetime experience. Sailing and crossing those icebergs, getting so close to the glacier is what I would have loved most. I am putting this to my bucket list. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Peggy
    September 26, 2017 / 6:29 pm

    Lucy, thanks for sharing those awesome pictures. After getting back from our Alaskan cruise on sept. 10th. 2017 I was making plans for 2018 Alaska. We will add a tour to Saywer Glacier next time – to see more Ice. Your picture on the ship made me think of how we met. Hello to your hubby.

    • September 26, 2017 / 8:07 pm

      Thank you Peggy! Glad these photos have helped you for next year! Take care xx

  14. September 27, 2017 / 12:19 am

    My mom wants to go on an Alaskan cruise so bad. This will definitely come in handy. I like that hat too!

  15. September 27, 2017 / 4:24 am

    We love glaciers and Alaska so this would be right up our alley! Would be so fun to take an Alaskan cruise sometime. It’s so cool that you got so close to the Sawyer Glacier and love the wildlife you saw! So adorable 🙂 Sounds like a fun adventure!

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