Ketchikan in Alaska is on most Alaskan cruise itineraries and there is so much to do. There are many cruise excursions or private tours to choose from in the Ketchikan cruise port.
Things to do in Ketchikan range from the Totem Bight State Park, Saxman Native Village, Creek Street, the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show, eating crab, ziplining, the Alaskan Rainforest Wildlife Sanctuary, Tongass National Forest, sport fishing, wildlife spotting, seeing the misty fjords, kayaking, snorkelling and going on a seaplane.
If a tour is not for you, just walking around the town of Ketchikan is a lovely walk and it is close to the cruise ship terminal. There are many gift shops, for souvenirs, salmon, jewellery, etc. Stop for lunch and sample the local salmon, halibut or crab and try the local Alaskan Ale.
Ketchikan weather can be glorious, but you also have a high chance of it raining! Ketchikan has one of the highest rainfalls in North America.
I have been in lovely weather and rainy days and I have still enjoyed my time in Ketchikan, it is all part of the experience.
My top tip is to pack an umbrella, rain jacket, gloves, scarf, hat and wear layers. This way if you are blessed with warm dry weather you can take something off, but if you get a wet day you are prepared.
Ketchikan Cruise Excursions
From my list above you can see there are many excursions, you can go on in Ketchikan to enjoy your Alaska experience.
You can either book through the cruise line or go on a private tour. Just remember to be back before all aboard time if going on a private tour, as if you are late the ship probably will not wait for you. Tours booked with the cruise line will wait if you tour is late.
I have been to the Totem Bight State Park, Tongass National Forest and Creek Street and you can read more about those tours here. I had a lovely, cold but sunny weather and got some beautiful photographs.
In the past, I have also been on a seaplane through the misty fjords and that was an amazing experience, I highly recommend that if your budget allows for it.
Eating crab is a must in Ketchikan! The king crab is delicious and there is even a tour that takes you just for a crab feast!
This time I was in Ketchikan, Alaska I went to the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show. In ten years of coming to Alaska, I had not been! This is something most people have seen if they have been on an Alaskan cruise and I felt like I was missing out!
Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show
The Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show cruise excursion is a fun tour. It is very easy to get to from the ship as it is right in the town centre.
The day I was there, of course, it was raining! But this did not dampen my spirits (excuse the pun!) I had my umbrella ready, my rain jacket, hat, gloves, scarf, boots on and walked to the show, as the show must go on!
Once you are at the Lumberjack Show theatre, you do not need to worry about getting wet as the audience area in undercover. It’s just the poor performers that get soaked, as their part is open to the elements!
What happens in the Lumberjack Show?
The Ketchikan Lumberjack Show is a great way to experience Ketchikan and get true American entertainment. I’m British and I really didn’t know what to expect, but I loved it! It was very entertaining, and the performers kept it funny.
Basically, there are two teams; USA and Canada and the professional timber athletes compete in springboard chopping, buck sawing, log rolling, axe throwing, tree climbing and more.
It is all about how quickly they can use chainsaws, axes, saws and climb and they get points for the quickest team. The audience is divided into the teams to cheer, it was a lot of fun, even in the rain.
At the end of the show, you can have your photos taken with guys and there is a good lumberjack souvenir shop as you leave the theatre.
Around Up of the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show
This is a great shore excursion to go in Ketchikan to get a true Alaskan experience and it is only an hour long, so you can also combine it with another tour or a combi tour.
It is right in the town centre, so if that is the only tour you would like to see you can still walk to Creek Street and around the town. You would still have time to go for lunch and try some king crab or fish and chips.
What to Wear in Ketchikan Alaska
Always be prepared in Alaska for the weather, as it can be warm, cold, raining, sunny or windy! Wear layers forget about summer in the Mediterranean as it is not that type of summer.
Bring an umbrella, rain jacket, gloves, scarf, hat, waterproof walking shoes/boots, jeans, tees, sweaters.
Ketchikan’s average temperatures between May – September are 41*F (5*C) – 65*F (19*C).
YOU MAY ALSO ENJOY READING:
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TOP 23 PACKING TIPS FOR A COLDER CRUISE
TOP 10 PACKING TIPS FOR AN ALASKAN CRUISE
WHAT YOU MUST SEE IN KETCHIKAN ALASKA
HOW TO GET UP CLOSE TO THE SAWYER GLACIER IN ALASKA
TOUR OF A LIFETIME LANDING ON A GLACIER BY HELICOPTER IN JUNEAU ALASKA
HOW TO MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR DAY IN SKAGWAY ALASKA
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Love Lucy x
I love the idea of the lumberjack show, it sounds like brilliant fun.. We have been thinking of going Alaska actually. Is it as unspoilt as it looks on the internet?
Once you get out of thr port areas each town is beautiful and unspoilt. You really are in nature.
I have been to a lumberjack show before and totally recommend them. But that was in Canada, I wonder if they are more fun in the USA 😉 . Seriously thinking about Alaskian cruise soon and by the looks of it, you are selling it to me very well with all the excursions involved as well.
I bet the show was fun in Canada too! Highly recommend an Alaskan cruise!
Never heard of Ketchikan until now, let alone of a lumberjack show. But the competition sure sounds fun.
Neither had I until I went to Alaska 10 years ago! This is why I decided to watch the show, it was about time & it was really fun
I just read the whole article, nicely written by you. Thanks a lot of you for giving us suitable information by your awesome post.
Thank you very much!
Ketchikan is such a picturesque town. We visited it on a cruise about five years ago, and did wet-suit snorkeling, which was great. When I go again, I’d definitely try the Lumberjack Show — sounds like fun, and something so different from anything around my part of the USA in Texas.
Wow! You are much braver than me! The Lumberjack show is lots of fun, so im sure you will enjoy it
I was pretty convinced when I read the part about a seaplane trip through the fjords. That sounds like an awesome experience. Then I read the part about king crab and a crab fest. YUM! Ketchikan has just been added to my ever increasing bucket list!
I hope you get to go to Ketchikan in the future
I am getting ready to plan a trip to Alaska for 3Q19 so I bookmarked this post for reference. Thanks!
Your top tips for Ketchikan Alaska packing – “to pack an umbrella, rain jacket, gloves, scarf, hat and wear layers” are things I do on every trip – it’s useful to have rain and cold weather gear just in case.
State park and a seaplane ride interest me – 2 perspectives to see the landscapes. I ould not choose the Alaskan
I hope you have a fantastic time on your cruise to Alaska!
What a great idea to visit Ketchikan on a cruise. I guess is makes is really special, I would like to try cruise one day, too.
I hope you get to cruise in the future, it is a great way to travel.
I’ve only visited Alaska once, but sadly it was only for work. When I return for pleasure I definitely want to see a lumberjack show!
It’s so much fun, I hope you get to return to Ketchikan.
Ketchikan sounds really interesting. Was not much aware of this place. The Lumberjack show is something unique and intriguing, something we would love to experience. The Totem Pole National Park is another unique attraction that had our attention riveted. Hope to get to Alaska and experience it to the hilt someday.
The Lumberjack show and the totem pole park are both great things to see in Ketchikan.
This sounds like quite an interesting show. I have never seen a competition with lumber. Given that there are teams to cheer, I can quite imagine how energetic the whole vibe would be. A definite plus to the cruise bit.
It was really good fun!