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Make the most of your time in each port with an optional shore excursion. While you're free to explore any port on your own, many cruisers opt for organized excursions for their knowledgeable guides, access to restricted locations and unmatched convenience. Most excursions pick you up at the pier and drop you back off at the ship so you don't have to worry about transportation at port - or about arriving late and missing your ship. Start by browsing our destination to learn about their ports of call and the most popular things to do in each, or contact our experienced cruise consultants for help selecting the best excursions for you.

We recommend booking your shore excursions with either The Cruise Web's third party excursions partner, Shore Excursions Group , or through the cruise line directly.

There are many advantages to booking with Shore Excursions Group. For starters, you can enjoy prices up to 40% lower than cruise lines! Plus, Shore Excursions Group offers a money-back guarantee, additional excursion options, guaranteed return to ship and 24/7 traveler support at 1-866-703-0606.

NOTE : Shore excursions booked through Shore Excursions Group are NOT operated by the cruise line, but instead are arranged by Shore Excursions Group.

To browse shore excursions from Shore Excursions Group (The Cruise Web's 3rd party tour partner), please CLICK HERE .

Remember to book your shore excursions early for the best selection. Tours have limited capacity and fill up quickly!

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Holland America Line Shore Excursions

Shore Excursions

Whether wine tasting in Burgundy, zip-lining in Costa Rica or photographing penguins in Chile, Holland America Line Shore Excursions help you connect deeply to the people and places you visit.

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Benefits of booking.

  • Guaranteed best price — find a better price on any tour we offer and we'll refund you 100 percent of the price difference in the form of an onboard credit. More information available when you  log in to purchase your shore excursions .
  • Earlier departure off the ship
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  • Licensed, insured and professional local operators & Guides
  • Full refund if the port is missed
  • Flexibility to cancel up to 24 hours prior
  • Expert advice offered pre-cruise by our dedicated call center and onboard by our shore excursion staff

What are shore excursions?

Shore excursions are available through our partnerships with local suppliers and guides, in the majority of ports we visit. They cover an amazing array of places, landmarks, activities and experiences — from wildlife encounters in the Outback and salsa lessons in Havana to wine-tastings on a French estate and zip-lining in the Costa Rican rainforest. We offer something for every interest, taste and capability level.

How do I book shore excursions?

Choose from city tours, culinary explorations, shopping outings, outdoor expeditions, cultural activities and more. We recommend you book early for the best selection, as our excursions and tours have limited capacity and fill up quickly. Shore excursions may be easily booked online in advance of sailing on the book shore excursions page. If tour details are not yet finalized, please check again closer to your departure date. Shore excursions may be booked and prepaid online up to three days before sailing. Your Digital Tour Tickets will be available under My Account in Navigator. Please download the  Navigator app  prior to boarding. You will also be able to request tours on the ship at the shore excursion Office.

Many tours have limited availability, and booking tours in advance reduces the chance of disappointment. All tour bookings are processed on a first-come, first-served basis.  Prices are subject to change without notice. Tours are booked and paid with a credit card and a confirmation will be sent to your email address.

If a tour is sold out, many tours offer a waitlist option. If a tour is waitlisted and space becomes available, an email notification will be sent to you at which time you will have 72 hours to book and confirm the tour.  Your credit card will be charged once you have confirmed your tour.

Is there a dedicated resource I can speak with about shore excursions?

The shore excursion reservation office is available to assist you Monday-Friday, 7 AM to 4 PST. Guests may call 1(888)425-9376 to speak directly with an agent.

Is there a customized brochure of shore excursions available for a specific cruise?

To download a voyage specific eBrochure, go to  and select Already Booked then Book Shore Excursions. You will be prompted to enter your Email or Mariner ID along with your password. Go to Explore Shore Excursions then select Download Personalized eBrochure.

Will my kids be able to go on shore excursions with Holland America Line?

Yes, you’ll find a range of experiences to suit the interests and activity levels of everyone in your family. Our family-friendly shore excursions give you new ways to discover destinations together.

Click to learn more about  family cruises with Holland America Line.

What is the timing of shore excursions?

Shore excursion departure times coincide with the ship’s schedule as well as other tours, enabling you to take multiple tours if desired with worry-free return to the ship. In the very rare event that your tour is late and the ship must leave, we will arrange at our expense to get you to the next port of call. With independently booked tours, you are responsible for rejoining the ship at the next port of call.

Does Holland America Line offer accessible shore excursions?

Holland America Line is committed to providing safe, easy, and accessible accommodations for all persons with disabilities, to the extent that is feasible. The tours are graded according to their relative level of activity. The activity icons that appear at the beginning of each tour description provide a general idea of the level of activity to expect. It is important to keep in mind that tour operators are subject to the laws of their own country with respect to accommodating the needs of guests with disabilities. In most foreign countries, the laws are not as stringent as those in the United States. We cannot guarantee that all are able to provide facilities that are accessible to individuals with disabilities and third party shore excursion facilities may not be fully accessible to guests with disabilities. For detailed information on accessibility of shore excursions, we strongly recommend contacting our shore excursions reservations department well in advance of embarkation at 1-888-425-9376 (or locally at 206-626-7320). Once onboard, please visit the shore excursions office.

What is Explorations Central?

Explorations Central (EXC™) is a one-stop, multi-faceted program that combines indispensable travel resources and on-board enrichment opportunities, making your time ashore more engaging, vivid and meaningful. The program —including our EXC Guides, shore excursions staff and other resources— is located in the Crow’s Nest (on some ships) or another specially designated place.

What are the cancellation policies for shore excursions?

Cancellations for pre-paid tours are allowed up to 3 days prior to cruise embarkation and will be refunded to the credit card used for the purchase. If within 3 days of embarkation, all changes/cancellations must be done onboard the ship and refunds will be applied to your onboard account. If the credit is not fully utilized during the cruise, the balance will be paid to that passenger by the ship's Purser at the end of the voyage. If cancellation occurs onboard after the cancellation deadline for specific shore excursions, a 100% cancellation fee will apply. The ship's shore excursions office will be able to advise you of the cancellation deadline applicable to each tour. Optional shore excursions during the land portion of a Land & Sea Journey are non-refundable within 3 days of your Land & Sea Journey departure date. Group shore excursions cancelled within three days prior to embarkation (sail) date are nonrefundable. Custom tours may have different cancellation deadlines which will be stated in the proposal. In the rare instance that tours are cancelled by Holland America Line or the tour operator, the full amount will be refunded within four to six weeks after the voyage ends.

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Extraordinary Shore Excursions

Ignite your sense of wonder, inspiration, and adventure

Shore Excursions with Celebrity Cruises

Connect to the world in ways you never imagined and embark on an excursion perfectly tailored to your interests. Whether you're looking for a private, customizable experience, a carefully curated guided tour with a small group, or an unforgettable trip to iconic local landmarks, we have the right option to discover any destination, granting in-depth knowledge, expertise, and a truly extraordinary experience.

More Than 280 Breathtaking Destinations. Three Perfect Ways to Explore.


Create personalized tours and explore a range of exclusive offerings. Get insights from expert local guides who will drive you to the region's most memorable places.


Explore the best in every port with a select group of like-minded adventurers. Spend more one-on-one time with your guide, and develop a deeper appreciation of each destination you visit.


Experience each city's must-see landmarks and iconic sites through shore excursions that ensure you check the most important items off your bucket list.


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Already booked on a cruise? Book shore excursions in Cruise Planner.

Tours tailored to your interests.

Experience city highlights, iconic ruins, natural wonders or beautiful beaches on excursions customized for your specific needs.


Help preserve the destination and support the local community on tours that emphasize local history, culture and environment.

Enjoy more time discovering each destination’s extraordinary treasures, during extended tours with overnight stays.

Nourish your mind, body and spirit with tours that include a range of authentic experiences—indigenous healing practices, detoxes with local muds and minerals, destination-specific fitness, and more.

Savor authentic flavors or sip on the most popular drinks of each destination, during unique tasting experiences.

Immerse yourself in the culture and history of each destination on your exciting itinerary, while connecting with the locals.

Add some excitement to your cruise with thrilling zip line rides, white water rafting, hiking in the mountains, and more.

Spend the day on the water, sailing in a catamaran, snorkeling or scuba diving near majestic coral reefs, and reeling in some fish.

Relax on pristine white sands, stroll down the coast and observe local wildlife, or work on your tan as you sip a tropical cocktail.


Explore the destination's most iconic places and take exceptional selfies as you check famous local landmarks off your bucket list.

Join other animal lovers in your group for up-close looks at your favorite land-dwelling and aquatic creatures in their natural habitats.


Soar above glorious forests, frozen lakes, magnificent glaciers and active volcanoes for panoramic views of nature's beauty.


These are some of the great things our guests are saying about booking their shore excursions with Celebrity

"Booking your shore excursion through the ship is by far the best way to go. Each one is well thought out and has a special attention to detail that create lasting memories of a lifetime"

By Jennifer M.

"Try the shore excursions. At Cozumel, we chose Chaak Tun and it was exceptional. This was a ferry ride to the mainland and a visit to the cenote. James our guide was very knowledgeable, entertaining and helpful. The excursion included swimming the underground water, going through caves and caverns, meeting with a medicine woman (this was fantastic), a wonderful lunch and a final tequila tasting. Do not miss this excursion. It was the highlight of our trip"

By Barbara R.

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Best Caribbean shore excursions

Melinda Crow

Whether your ideal cruise vacation involves lounging, exploring or learning something new, there's a Caribbean shore excursion designed to help you find your bliss. In a year-round destination like the Caribbean, most of the fun revolves around sun, sand and sea. History, culture and food also top the lists of excursions available in the region.

You may be surprised by how many Caribbean islands have interesting geological features not found anywhere else in the world. Shore excursions offer plenty of adventurous ways to explore these areas, from caves to volcanoes.

In our quest for the best Caribbean shore excursions, our goal was not to find the most popular tours, but to find the experiences and attractions that make a destination stand out. Let's jump in with a look at our favorite tours.

For more cruise news, reviews and tips, sign up for TPG's cruise newsletter .

Prices may vary among third-party sellers, and from cruise line to cruise line. To account for that, we are using the following price key to help you get an idea of the costs to expect for each tour.

  • $ = $0-$50.
  • $$ = $51-$99.
  • $$$ = $100-$199.
  • $$$$ = $200-$499.
  • $$$$$ = $500 and up.

Best Eastern Caribbean shore excursions

Virgin gorda and the baths, tortola.

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You'll have the opportunity to visit many gorgeous beaches in the Caribbean, but The Baths is about as unique as they come in terms of pure scenic beauty. The beach features giant boulders and stone formations that create hidden pocket beaches and spots where the sand and water rush in and out. It's part of the National Parks Trust of the Virgin Islands. To get there, you'll take a 45-minute boat ride from Tortola to nearby Virgin Gorda.

  • 4 1/2 hours, challenging, $$$.

Related: Caribbean cruise guide: Best itineraries, planning tips and things to do

Bioluminescent Kayak Adventure, Puerto Rico

This excursion out of San Juan starts at dusk and finishes well after dark. You'll travel by van to the eastern edge of the island to a beach near a bioluminescent bay. You'll get brief kayaking instructions, life vests and lights before setting off through the mangroves and into a small, sheltered bay. Every stroke of your oars sets off sparks of light in the water as you stir the tiny glowing organisms.

Even with availability limited to cruises that stay in port overnight in San Juan or pre- or post-cruise stays, this excursion made our list because it is simply not something you can do in very many places in the world. Kayaking in the mangroves in the dark was one of the coolest things I've ever done, and the bioluminescence was an incredible extra bonus.

  • Six hours, moderate, $$$.

America's Cup 12-Meter Regatta, St. Maarten

Are you up for a yacht race? You don't need any experience sailing to participate. You can simply go along for the ride, or with some instruction, help sail the boat as you race to the finish. It's possible to hop on a sailboat and cruise around sipping fruity drinks on any island in the Caribbean. What you cannot do everywhere is help sail the boat or participate in a race. St. Maarten is known for sailing -- why not join the fun?

  • 2 1/2 hours, challenging, $$$.

National Park Snorkeling Excursion to St. John, St. Thomas

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This excursion simplifies the complicated process of getting from the cruise pier on St. Thomas to the island of St. John, home of Virgin Islands National Park. You'll get to see a bit of St. Thomas on the way to the boat dock, then enjoy a beautiful boat ride before your snorkeling begins. This is the spot for some of the best snorkeling in the Caribbean because the park encompasses over 18,000 acres of submerged land that include 45 species of hard coral, 400 species of reef-associated fish and 17 documented species of whales and dolphins.

  • 3 1/2 hours, easy to moderate, $$.

Related: Best Caribbean cruise tips to help you make the most of your time aboard and ashore

Monserrat Volcano Flightseeing, Antigua

Helicopter flightseeing is a popular shore excursion in other destinations, but it's not something you'll find in most of the Caribbean. This flight offers the opportunity to see a still-active volcano from the air, as well as experience the beauty of the islands from a unique perspective. There's also the possibility of seeing sea life like whales, dolphins and turtles from the air as you fly between the islands.

  • Two hours, easy, $$$$$.

Best Western Caribbean shore excursions

Blue hole and konoko falls, jamaica.

Waterfall excursions are a big deal in Jamaica, with multiple excursions featuring the often overcrowded Dunn's River Falls. This tour from Ocho Rios takes you off the beaten path to two slightly less crowded sets of falls. Blue Hole is an idyllic waterfall-fed swimming hole, where the more daring can jump from heights into the pool below. Konoko Falls is located within a botanical garden featuring parrots, crocodiles and tropical birds found on the island. Here, you can climb to the top of the falls for a better look and enjoy a swim in natural pools.

  • 4 1/2 hours, moderate, $$$.

Flavors of Jamaica

Jerk chicken is one of the best-known dishes of the Caribbean. Finding an excursion that allows you to experience it firsthand with a cooking class that teaches you about the flavors and culture of Jamaica is possible in most Jamaican ports. Most tours have you cooking your own lunch under the tutelage of a Jamaican chef. In Ocho Rios, a visit to a Jamaican estate house is a bonus.

  • Three hours, easy, $$$.

Related: Eastern Caribbean vs. Western Caribbean cruises: Which itinerary will I like more?

Xocolatl — The Chocolate Experience, Roatan

You may think you know chocolate, but Mayan chocolate is a palate pleaser not well known around the globe. This excursion from Roatan, Honduras, allows you to learn and taste how chocolate fits into the Mayan culture. Part cultural education, part Honduran traditional lunch, this tour is a delightful option for Roatan cruisers eager to skip the sun and sand to experience a local meal.

  • Three hours, easy, $$.

Cave Tubing, Belize

shore excursions by cruise

Cave tubing is the only super popular excursion that made the list. Cave tubing is famous in Belize, and we didn't want you to miss out. The drive through the jungle to get to the caves is half the fun of the excursion. Upon arrival, and after a safety briefing, you'll quickly get cool and wet floating through a tunnel of limestone. You'll want a waterproof camera for this one.

  • 5 1/2 hours, moderate, $$.

Discover Scuba Diving From Shore, Grand Cayman

If you've ever thought of learning to scuba dive, a Discover Scuba course is the way to try it without taking hours of classes or investing loads of money. If you are going to try it, you might as well try it in one of the best diving locations on the planet. Plus, doing it from shore is less intimidating than trying it for the first time from a boat.

Several dive operators set up shop right at the shore within walking distance of the tender docks. You can make your own arrangements with the dive shops in advance to participate in a Discover Scuba class or sign up for a ship's excursion if there is one. You'll learn the basics of breathing through a regulator, then enjoy a guided dive around the reef just offshore. (The reason ships anchor offshore at Grand Cayman.)

Save a Sea Turtle Experience, Cozumel

shore excursions by cruise

Most cruisers park their sunscreened bodies on a towel in the sand at one of the many beaches in Cozumel, Mexico, but you do have other options. Why not do something as cool as participating in a sea turtle hatching?

When sea turtles hatch, not all of them make it out of the nest and into the sea. This educational excursion allows you to give a helping hand to the little guys that didn't make it out. Under the careful watch of experts, you'll dig in the sand at already-hatched nesting areas looking for hatchlings that can either be helped into the ocean or retrieved and raised in a sanctuary until they are strong enough to be released. Bonus: Tiny baby sea turtles are adorable.

  • Four hours, moderate, $$$.

Best Southern Caribbean shore excursions

Whale and dolphin safari, dominica.

There is exactly one place on the planet with a known resident pod of nonmigrating sperm whales, and it's off the shores of Dominica. Come see them on a guide boat licensed to seek out both whales and dolphins; sperm whales aren't the only cetaceans that pass through this area. As with any whale watching, there aren't any guarantees, but this tour puts you in the right place for sightings.

  • 3 1/2 hours, easy, $$.

Related: The best Caribbean cruises for every type of traveler

Cave Snorkeling, Bonaire

Bonaire has dozens of accessible caves, some filled with actively growing stalactites and stalagmites. Most cruise excursions will take you to at least two of them. These tours are not for the faint of heart.

Climbing into the caves is the hardest part. Some involve ladders; others are more challenging, requiring you to don a climbing harness and pick your way down a rock wall with the help of an expert guide.

Once inside the cave, snorkeling allows you to experience the incredible clarity of the water that has filtered through rock crevices to form pools. You may need to take a brief swim through a passage leading to another room in the cavern. If you're up for it, you'll return to the ship with a remarkable story. This is near the top of the list of amazing things I have done.

  • Three hours, challenging, $$.

Sky Canopy and Aerial Tram, St. Lucia

shore excursions by cruise

Many islands offer adventure courses, but the geography of St. Lucia gives it the unique ability to offer a true treetop zip line experience among the island's mountain peaks. Start by taking a gondola ride into the mountains, ending near the first zip line tower. The lines are interspersed with rope bridges, making the whole course an adventure. Bonus: There's a cold beer waiting for you at the cantina when you finish.

  • 4 1/2-5 hours, moderate, $$$.

Pilot Your Own Boat and Snorkeling Tour, Grenada

Totally different from a personal watercraft, these little two-person inflatable motorboats (picture miniature Zodiacs) are crazy fun to drive. The snorkeling part of the excursion lets you explore one of the world's best underwater sculpture parks. The excursion is fun and lets you get wet, while leaving you plenty of time to shop or explore the port.

Half-Day Land Rover Safari, Aruba

shore excursions by cruise

Some of Aruba's best sites require a 4x4 to get there. The Land Rover option is a bit more comfortable than the ATVs many people choose. You'll visit the famous California Lighthouse and the more picturesque side of the island. On most of these excursions, you'll end up at a beach, so wear your swimsuit and bring a towel.

4x4 Adventure and Harrison's Cave Exploration, Barbados

If you want to get out of the city and see Barbados in its rawest form, this 4x4 adventure is a superb option. You'll enjoy a forest drive, featuring scenic overlooks and a view of the pounding Atlantic Ocean (and the rock formations it creates) where it meets the Caribbean on the eastern side of Barbados before enjoying a motorized tram ride through Harrison's Cave. The active cave (meaning it has water flowing through it) has a great hall with a ceiling height of almost 50 feet.

Bottom line

Shore excursions in the Caribbean give you the opportunity to explore beyond the pier or even the city where your ship docks. Whether you crave water sports, wildlife or a taste of local food, you can easily find an activity to enhance your time ashore. When your ship stays in port all day, as they often do in the Caribbean, half-day excursions leave you plenty of time for those other cruise basics, like shopping, lounging on the beach and kicking back with a tropical drink.

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Shore Excursions

Seabourn has planned an array of optional shore excursions of both general and special interest in the ports of call on your cruise vacation.

shore excursions by cruise

Shore Experiences

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Ventures By Seabourn

Benefits of booking.

Seabourn has planned an array of optional shore excursions of both general and special interest in the ports of call on your cruise vacation. In this section, you may view available sightseeing options, view detailed descriptions, and purchase your shore excursions online. Each of our tours provides the highest level of quality, safety, convenience and value. Once you have booked your cruise and know your itinerary, you can easily book your shore excursions online here; we recommend you book early for the best selection.  

To find shore excursions for your itinerary, please select a destination and port above, then click Search.  

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Shore Excursion FAQs

Can i purchase shore excursions on this website.

Yes, Seabourn shore excursions can be purchased online once you have booked your cruise and have a booking number. To purchase a shore excursion online, go to “Booked Guests” on and “ Book Shore Excursions & Spa ”.  Online purchases close at three (3) days prior to your cruise.  Your shore excursion tickets will be delivered to your suite.  All pricing is in U.S. Dollars.

Do I have to buy the shore excursions online?

No. Purchasing a shore excursion online provides immediate confirmation via email and will guarantee you receive the lowest price for that tour. Purchases can also be made using our Seabourn SOURCE App or after boarding your ship.  Space may be limited on select tours, so book early for the best selection and the best price.  Sales are made on a first-come, first-serve basis and waitlisted excursions are cleared in the order received.

Can I purchase tours for both myself and my companion?

Yes, you can purchase tours online for all guests on the booking.  You may also purchase excursions for additional bookings.

How do I know which tours are right for me?

Excursions are organized in our seven (7) Shore Experiences by Seabourn Collections and you can filter to specific collections when browsing or purchasing tours.  Tour descriptions are also marked with various symbols to indicate the difficulty of the tour, as well as any special interest content. In addition, specific information about restrictions or suggested cautions is included in the notes section of our tour descriptions. Once you are on board, our Destination & Guest Services teams can help you assess the suitability of a specific tour in a personal consultation.

What if I need to cancel my excursion?

We understand plans change. However, last minute cancellations can result in costs to us or to our third party service providers. Cancellations of shore excursions, spa services or gift orders made more than three days prior to embarkation will be fully refunded; cancellations made onboard or within the three day window prior to embarkation may be subject a cancellation fee. Cancellation fees for certain shore excursions may be up to one hundred percent (100%) of the shore excursion price, depending on the shore excursion. For onboard cancellations of shore excursions, therefore, please speak with the Shore Excursion department onboard for the actual cancellation fee amount. Cancellations of spa services within twenty-four hours of the appointment are subject to a fifty percent (50%) cancellation fee. All cancellations made onboard will be refunded in the form of onboard credit, regardless of whether the purchase was made by a guest or a third party.

What if I want to do more than one tour in the same day?

In many ports, it is possible to do more than one tour in the same day. Our booking system will not allow tours to be booked within forty-five (45) minutes of each other.  

What if I want to do something that’s not offered on a tour?

In most ports Seabourn's staff, both ashore and on board, are capable of arranging a wide range of individualized activities. You can make your custom request by calling us at 800-984-3225 or +1 206-626-9187 and speaking with one of our Destination Specialists to arrange your experience before you sail. Our hours of operation are Monday – Friday 7:00am to 4:00pm (Pacific Time).

What if a tour is cancelled?

If Seabourn cancels a tour due to safety, security or other conditions beyond our control a full refund will be provided to the credit card used to purchase the tour.  Similar tours to your liking may be available.  Check or call Seabourn shore excursion reservations for more information.

Is it customary to extend gratuities to local tour guides?

Yes. Seabourn tour prices do not include gratuities for guides, drivers and other tour operator staff.

How soon will shore excursions be available for my cruise?

Seabourn’s shore excursions are typically available one year prior to sailing.  Guests are encouraged however to go back on line a few times prior to their cruise departure date to see if any new programs have been added.

Does Seabourn provide a shore excursion brochure for my cruise?

Yes, confirmed guests can go to “Booked Guests” on and then “ Book Shore Excursions & Spa ”.  Guests will see all available excursions arranged by destination and can download a personalized brochure for their cruise.  Guests are encouraged to go back on line a few times prior to their cruise departure date to see if any new programs have been added.  Guests can also download their personalized brochure in online check-in when they register for their cruise.

What if I want to speak to someone about the tours available on my cruise?

Seabourn has a shore excursion reservations team that can help assist you with tour bookings or answer any questions you might have.  Our shore excursion specialists can be reached at 800-984-3225 (USA or Canada) or 800-260-639 (AU) or +1 206-626-9187 from Monday – Friday 7:00am to 4:00pm (Pacific Time).

I prefer private touring. Can Seabourn assist with making private arrangements?

Yes.  Seabourn has a department specifically designed to provide expert private touring arrangements for solo travelers, couples and small groups.  Kindly note Private Touring is at the moment limited in certain destinations like Alaska, Canada, Caribbean and Mexico. You can reach this team by emailing  [email protected] .

What if the excursion I want is not available, should I waitlist for that excursion?

Yes.  If the excursion is of particular interest to you, please do waitlist for it as our shore side teams monitor sales and will work with our tour providers to add more space or additional departures where possible.  Guests are waitlisted in the order received and will receive an email if additional space becomes available.  Responses to those emails are limited to seventy-two (72) hours at which time the next guest in line will be able to book the excursion.  Destination Managers will also check on additional space once you are on board.  

Can the price of shore excursions change?

Yes.  All excursion pricing is subject to change.  As Seabourn tries to make excursions available well in advance of your cruise, we will often encounter cost increases in the form of taxes, transportation costs or admission fees after our tours are made available for sale.  Pricing can also be increased based on demand.  We encourage guests to book early to receive the best price.  All prices are quoted for adults only in U.S. Dollars.  

What is a Mid-Cruise Overland Journey?

As part of our Journey Collection, Seabourn product specialists have developed several options to explore destinations not accessible during a single day port call.  Guests are approved to disembark the ship and travel to another destination and then re-board the vessel in another port.  Mid-Cruise Overland Journeys can be overnight experiences or multi-day trips and will include all transportation, hotel overnights and most meals.  Most journeys include several unique sightseeing experiences along the way.  Mid-Cruise Overland Journeys need to be booked well in advance in order to make the various arrangements.  We are able to secure additional space on occasion, so guests are encouraged to waitlist as our shore side team will actively be working to clear waitlisted guests. 

Note:  100% cancellation fees may apply to all overnight and overland journeys if cancelled within the penalty period.  Loyalty discounts do not apply to Mid-Cruise Overland Journeys.

Does Seabourn offer private vehicle touring?

Yes.  As part of our Bespoke Collection, Seabourn has arranged a variety of half-day and full-day vehicle options in every port where possible.  Options may include “Driver Only” for guests more familiar with a port of call, while others will include a Driver and English-speaking guide.  These options can be found with all other shore excursions available for your cruise and can be booked on-line or on board.  This version of private touring is where you set your own agenda.  Our Destination teams on board can assist you with arrangements as needed.  For guests wanting a fully customized private touring arrangement, they need to reach out to our Private Arrangement Specialists at  [email protected] .   Note:  Private Vehicles are booked per party and not per person.  Only one guests should book the vehicle.  Due to limited availability of private vehicles, 100% cancellation fees may apply.  Loyalty discounts do not apply to private vehicles.

Does Seabourn offer foreign language tours?

Seabourn designs their tour program to be delivered by English-speaking guides.  Our private arrangements team can set up foreign language private touring opportunities where available and guests can discuss onboard options with our Destination & Guest Services team.

Does Seabourn allow guests to bring wine or other spirits back on board the vessel?

Yes.  Seabourn has a significant amount of Epicurean Collection tours that may take you to a winery, distillery or other venue where you can purchase alcoholic beverages.  You are free to bring those back to the ship and no corkage fees apply.

I have limited mobility. How do I know which tours are best for me?

Shore excursion descriptions will include activity icons that will identify the level of activity required for the excursion.  It is important to keep in mind that tour operators are subject to the laws of their country with respect to accommodating the needs of guests with disabilities.  In most foreign countries, the laws are not as stringent as those in the United States.    Our shore excursion reservations agents can help with any questions you might have on accessibility.  Email  [email protected]  or call 800-984-3225 for additional service.   Once you are on board, our Destination & Guest Services teams can help you assess the suitability of a specific tour in a personal consultation.  Note:  Wheelchair accessible tour buses outside of the United States may not be of the same standards.  Our tour operators will do their best to accommodate guests with limited mobility.

Will I encounter difficulties (dis)embarking the ship during some ports of call?

Please see the on-board Destination & Guest Services team to help determine whether you can expect to encounter difficulties (dis)embarking the ship.  The decision whether or not to provide assistance to a guest or carry their device (wheelchair, walker, etc.) up or down a ship’s gangway, or on or off a tender boat, is at the sole discretion of the Captain, made based on his evaluation of guest and crew safety.  We encourage you to bring a collapsible wheelchair as space limitations may restrict the ability of some tour operators to accommodate motorized mobility aid devices.

Does Seabourn have a loyalty program?

Yes.  Seabourn has a robust loyalty program with some levels offering shore excursion discounts, and club points can be earned from shore excursion purchases.  To learn more about our loyalty program, visit our Seabourn Club information section on at .  Loyalty discounts do not apply to overland, overnight and private vehicle programs.

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I tried Holland America's 'Have It All' package. For just $55 a day, my cruise felt way more luxurious.

  • I tried Holland America Line 's Have It All package on a recent cruise to Alaska.
  • For $55 per person per day, we got complimentary drinks, special meals, and other perks.
  • The price was so worth it we already booked this package for future cruises. 

Insider Today

Cruise bookings are predicted to reach record levels this year, and travelers are especially interested in luxurious sailings.

But as many of us know, luxury doesn't always equate to value, even when it comes to upgrades and special packages.

So, on our recent cruise to Alaska, my husband and I put one of many cruise packages to the test: Holland America Line's "Have It All" package, which costs $55 per person per day.

It includes perks like a beverage package, ship credit for shore excursions, onboard WiFi, and dinner at specialty restaurants.

Here's why we found it to be such a great value we're going to add it to future cruises.

The beverage package was great, and it included special drinks without alcohol

The biggest perk of the "Have It All" package was the ability to order drinks without worrying about the bill at the end of the cruise.

Our previous cruises had us drinking only tap water, drip coffee, tea, and an occasional glass of wine with dinner to avoid any sticker shock at the end of the trip. We felt restricted in enjoying our vacation.

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But this time, we had the freedom to enjoy ourselves. The "Have It All" package we booked came with 15 drinks a day under $11. If you want a drink over $11, you only pay the difference.

The beverage package also covers non-alcoholic drinks. It was perfect for when we wanted espresso drinks for cold Alaska days or a bottle of water for a shore excursion.

The shore-excursion credit helped push us to have more fun

We knew we had to do a whale-watching excursion in Alaska, but didn't consider booking other excursions due to price. Many of the ones we were interested in cost over $100 per person.

But with the package, we each got credits to use toward shore excursions during our cruise. The value of the credit varies depending on the duration of your cruise — ours was less than 10 days, so we each got a $100 credit.

The $200 worth of credits made us feel more comfortable booking an incredible excursion to kayak the wild waters of Sitka.

We probably would've hesitated to book an excursion and missed an incredible experience if we hadn't felt compelled to use the credits in the package.

Specialty dining helped us celebrate our anniversary

Our "Have it All" packages each included at least one dinner at one of the ship's specialty restaurants. If you're on a longer cruise, this package would get you access to more dinners.

We used our credits to eat at the Pinnacle Grill, known for its premium steaks and intimate dining experience. Our anniversary dinner was extra special because of the access to premium dishes unavailable in the main dining room, five-star service, and a luxurious setting.

WiFi kept us connected

The package included WiFi, which really came in handy as we shared photos with friends and family throughout our trip.

We were able to use the internet to search for whatever we needed and research the highlights to visit at the next port of call.

We've already booked the package for future cruises

For less than what a few drinks cost per day, the package helped us relax, have fun, and enjoy each port of call with a shore excursion. Plus, we got to indulge in the ship's specialty restaurants.

We loved it so much we've already purchased this same package for three future cruises.

Watch: While Delta's business is 'extremely robust,' the airline's marketing chief stays focused on the data

shore excursions by cruise

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shore excursions by cruise

St. Maarten: Not Just Another Caribbean Cruise Port

Welcome to St. Maarten, a paradise destination renowned for its vibrant coral reefs, stunning beaches, and thrilling adventures. Cruisers visiting here encounter a delightful fusion of Caribbean allure and Dutch elegance. From beautiful beaches and the bustling shops of Philipsburg to the thrilling sights of Maho Beach, visitors revel in the relaxed island ambiance, making the most of their tropical getaway.

What Makes St. Maarten St. Maarten?

St. Maarten , a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, is located in the northeastern Caribbean Sea , to the east of Puerto Rico . It shares one of the world’s smallest landmasses, that is divided between two nations: the Dutch territory of Sint Maarten in the south and the French territory of Saint-Martin in the north.

St. Maarten is unique for several reasons:

Dual Access: St. Maarten and Saint-Martin are under the oldest open border treaty in the world, allowing residents and visitors alike to pass freely through — and enjoy — both sides of the island.

Cultural Diversity: The island itself is a true melting pot, with over 100 nationalities including African, European, Dutch, French, and indigenous descendants that influence its culture.

Unabashedly Buzzy: While Saint Martin has a more relaxed European feel, St. Maarten is more developed, with a lively Caribbean vibe.

Culinary Capital of the Caribbean: From beachside food stalls to fine dining establishments, St. Maarten is an up-and-coming Caribbean foodie hotspot with an array of cuisine to please any palate.

Beachy Airplanes: The island boasts 37 beaches, with Maho Beach in Philipsburg being the most famous. Here, planes fly low over the sand before landing at the Princess Juliana Airport , providing an exciting experience for beachgoers and aviation enthusiasts.

Overall, St. Maarten attracts a large mix of visitors, including couples seeking romance, families in search of adventure, cruise ship passengers exploring the Caribbean, and luxury travelers indulging in upscale amenities. There’s a plethora of things to do in St. Maarten, making it a popular and welcoming destination for travelers of all kinds.

Top Things to Do in St. Maarten

shore excursions by cruise

From snorkeling adventures to exhilarating water sports and cultural experiences, St. Maarten offers a myriad of shore excursions for every traveler.

Island Canvassing

Here’s your chance to experience the wonders of both St. Maarten and Saint Martin in a grand tour beginning with a warm welcome, complete with a floral necklace and red carpet treatment. Delve into the island’s geological history amidst breathtaking landscapes, led by our expert guide.

Journey through Philipsburg and Marigot , savoring local cuisine, admiring Dutch and French architecture, exploring historical sites, and chatting with the locals. Dig your toes in the sand at the Orient and Maho beaches, and witness thundering planes landing overhead. Indulge in French pastries, a rum tasting, and unique cheeses, then explore bustling duty-free shopping scenes.

With ten stops conveniently spaced and refreshments aboard, this five to six-hour adventure ensures an unforgettable exploration of the island’s best offerings.

Calling All Snorkelers!

Creole Rock is listed among the top ten must-do activities in St. Maarten , and is a hands-down favorite of snorkelers. This large rock with an accompanying reef offers excellent opportunities to see and possibly interact with a variety of tropical fish, including pufferfish, barracuda, and even the rare frogfish.

The calm, clear shallow waters provide great visibility and are perfect for novice snorkelers. Floatation belts and boards are also available for non-snorkelers to join in on the fun.

Learn to Scuba Dive

shore excursions by cruise

Always dreamt of exploring the depths of the ocean? Well, now you can! Join a beginner scuba diving experience led by certified divemasters; you’ll descend down 25-30 feet and marvel at the underwater wonders of St. Maarten’s vibrant marine life.

Your expert divemaster will go over the basics with you, then take you and your group on a one-tank scuba dive right from the beach. Please note, this activity does not provide any diving certifications, but it is a fantastic introduction to the exciting sport of scuba diving.

Craving an Adrenaline Rush?

Look no further than hopping on a jet ski and jumping along the ocean waves. Ditch the dull walking tours and feel the thrill as you explore St. Maarten’s gorgeous coastline, experiencing the island’s beauty in a different way. Be sure to look up to see airplanes coming in for a landing above you! Afterward, enjoy the salt life as you take a refreshing dip or relax on the beach, a cold drink in hand.

Island Perfume Factory Tour

Take a ride to the French side of the island and immerse yourself in tropical scents during a guided tour of an island perfume factory. You’ll learn about the art of crafting fragrances, then the fun begins as you create your own personalized scent from the oils of your choosing.

Once you’ve settled on your signature blend, it will be sealed in a bottle for you to take — along with a gift bag of Tijon products — as a treasured St. Maarten keepsake.

Fancy Something Romantic?

This private gondola tour will do nicely. Pass under charming bridges and by luxurious mega yachts on an authentic gondola boat while your gondolier serenades you under the starlit sky, offering a unique perspective of the island’s wonders.

You and your special someone will indulge in a delightful two-course meal with wine and dessert, all while gliding along the water under the shimmering stars, creating cherished memories and an unparalleled romantic ambiance.

Shopper’s Paradise

shore excursions by cruise

Duty-free goods, anyone? This picturesque island drive takes you to Marigot’s open air markets , as well as a few parts of the island not normally frequented by cruisers.

Start off with a photo stop at Harold Jack lookout point , offering breathtaking views of neighboring islands including Saba , St. Eustatius , and British Anguilla , weather permitting.

Next, delve into Marigot, the French capital, where a charming blend of French sophistication and Caribbean flair awaits. Enjoy some free time here to explore quaint streets lined with sidewalk cafes, gourmet restaurants, and vibrant markets nestled against the backdrop of a historic fort.

Continue your adventure at Orient Bay , a renowned two-mile stretch of powdery white sands protected by a reef. Indulge in seaside pleasures like swimming or strolling along the beach before returning to Philipsburg, with the choice of being dropped off downtown for more shopping or taken back to the pier. Please note: while most beachgoers at Bikini Beach in Orient Bay will be in swim attire, topless or nude sunbathers may be present.

Luxury Outings

If luxury getaways are your cup of tea, we’ve got you covered there, too! Step aboard a sleek 40-foot catamaran and set sail past historic sites such as Fort Amsterdam , Little Bay , Cay Bay , and Pelican Key . Lounge on the trampoline net, enjoy Caribbean music, and keep an eye out for playful dolphins along the way.

Snacks and drinks abound, and snorkeling gear will be provided for those who want to snorkel at a sunken helicopter and shipwreck site. You will also have some time at a beach to collect shells, make sandcastles, or just soak up the sun. It’s a harmonizing blend of relaxation and adventure.

Wait… You Thought We Forgot About the Food?

This IS the culinary capital of the Caribbean, after all! Sure, you could stop at one of the many lolo’s (food stands) scattered along the beach … or, you could t reat yourself to a delicious plate of ribs, chicken, or fish, with a variety of scrumptious sides, at Rosemary’s Restaurant in Marigot.

This culinary adventure is also served with a side of snorkeling in Little Bay, where you can examine the cannons, submarine, curious fish, and more at Fort Amsterdam. Another accompaniment is a belly full of plane gawking as the jets fly over your head at Maho Beach. And did we mention the ice cream or pina colada you can enjoy as you stroll around the Beauty Beach boardwalk back in Philipsburg?

Wrapping it Up

shore excursions by cruise

As you can see, there’s no shortage of fun things to do in St. Maarten. For even more exciting offerings, click here . With so many delicious things to do, it’s hard to pick just one!

Go ahead — reserve your spot with us today and get ready to make the most of your time in this tropical paradise.

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Shore Excursion Details

Alaskan coastal brunch escape & waterfront cruise, juneau, alaska.

shore excursions by cruise

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  • 3 3/4 hrs Estimate Duration

shore excursions by cruise

Cruise through the pristine waters off Juneau and on to a remote speck of an island in Stephens Passage for a classic Alaskan-style brunch. The sights along the way will be spectacular as you will sail through picturesque Fitz Cove and past forested Douglas Island before reaching Orca Point Lodge, a private retreat in an idyllic setting on Colt Island. The views from there will be equally dramatic, as you will gaze out over the Funter Bay State Marine Park, a completely undeveloped wilderness. After settling in, you will be served a hearty brunch prepared with locally sourced ingredients. The entrées will likely include a fluffy omelet stuffed with your favorite ingredients and salmon cakes Benedict. Refreshing mimosas or another beverage of your choice will complement the meal. A bit of free time follows, during which you might explore the island. Keep an eye out for humpback whales and other marine animals while cruising.

• Look for humpback whales and other marine life while cruising to remote Colt Island. • Enjoy brunch at the seaside Orca Point Lodge on the heavily wooded island. • Admire the serenity of the setting and the panoramic views of the wilderness.


• Dress in weather-appropriate clothing. • Wear flat comfortable walking shoes.

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The 16 Best Alaska Cruise Excursions for 2024

A cruise to Alaska is one of the best ways to visit many parts of the 49th state, including the Inside Passage and the southeastern port towns of Juneau, Ketchikan and Skagway. You can also see dozens of glaciers on a cruise, plus remote places reachable only by water, like Glacier National Park & Preserve. Traveling by ship allows you to get closer to one-of-a-kind experiences in Alaska's interior, especially if you extend your vacation with a cruisetour (a package that includes the cruise and a land portion either before or after your voyage).

When it comes to excursions, many cruise lines offer the same experiences ashore for larger ports of call, often with a slight variation in the itinerary. The most popular tours highlight the best activities and attractions, such as the Mendenhall Glacier Ice Adventure Tour in Juneau, the Misty Fjords National Monument in Ketchikan and the White Pass & Yukon Route Railway in Skagway. You'll also find entertaining offerings from cruise lines that call on smaller, less visited ports, like Icy Strait Point (Hoonah), Sitka, Seward and Haines.

While some tours cost less than $100, don't be surprised to find over-the-top experiences that run about $750 per person – such as heli-flightseeing tours, where you'll land on a glacier and go dog-sledding with a team of Alaskan huskies. If you're comfortable with going it on your own, you might find lower prices on some excursions by booking directly with tour operators. Alaskan outfitters are used to working around cruise ship arrival and departure times, so their tours tend to fit into those schedules.

U.S. News has compiled this list to help you find the best Alaska cruise excursions, from the most popular (and affordable) options to once-in-a-lifetime adventures.

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Even though it's surrounded by water and mountains – and there's no road into town – Juneau is one of the most visited ports in Alaska, welcoming hundreds of thousands of visitors each summer. You'll find plenty to do in Alaska's capital, including whale watching tours, salmon bakes and more.

Mendenhall Glacier

The Mendenhall Glacier is one of the top attractions in Juneau, so many tours include a visit to the Tongass National Forest to view the 12-mile-long sheet of blue ice. Some cruise lines, like Princess Cruises , offer self-guided trekking excursions that include a ride on the Juneau Goldbelt Tram, which affords views of the Chilkat Mountains and other panoramic scenery. You can also opt to see the glacier from the water by boat or kayak, or on a float trip.

However, if you're going to splurge on any one excursion, it's this one: Sign up for a helicopter landing on Mendenhall Glacier, followed by a dog-sledding adventure with a team of Alaskan huskies. During the approximately 30-minute helicopter ride, you'll fly over rainforests and spectacular summits, but the real fun is when you arrive at the camp to go zipping through the snow led by your team of dogs and a professional musher.

The Mendenhall Glacier helicopter excursion is offered on Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, Carnival Cruise Line, Viking Ocean Cruises, Seabourn Cruise Line and Silversea Cruises.

Whale Watching and Wildlife Quest

Whale watching is another top activity when visiting Juneau, and many cruise lines offer several options for tours. Holland America Line has a five-hour, small-group excursion for just 20 guests; you'll search for humpback whales on a safari vessel, then hike on Mendenhall Glacier where you can look for beavers, Arctic terns, porcupines and black bears. If you prefer an even smaller group, Princess Cruises offers a 3.5-hour private whale watching tour for six people. Possible sightings include humpback whales, orcas, sea lions, eagles, harbor seals, lighthouses, glaciers and maybe even a bear along the shoreline.

One of Viking Ocean Cruises ' excursions, the Best of Juneau, lasts more than six hours and takes guests on a naturalist-led whale watching cruise by catamaran. Before heading back to shore, you'll have a lunch of local wild-caught Alaska salmon on remote Colt Island, followed by a scenic drive to Mendenhall Glacier to end the day.

Alaska whale watching and wildlife excursions are offered on Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Royal Caribbean International, Norwegian Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Viking Ocean Cruises, Silversea Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Seabourn Cruise Line.

Taku Lodge Salmon Bake

Norwegian Cruise Line offers a 3.5-hour Taku Glacier Lodge Flight & Feast excursion that will tick several quintessential Alaska adventures off your bucket list. After flying over the Juneau Icefield (the fifth-largest ice field in North America) in a classic De Havilland seaplane, guests will land in the river at the historic Taku Glacier Lodge across from Juneau's largest glacier, the 5-mile-wide Taku Glacier.

A traditional Alaska salmon bake (with all the fixings) and drinks made with glacier ice are another highlight of the day. You might even see a black bear sniffing around for leftovers after your feast. Following lunch, take a walk in the lush Tongass National Forest before heading back from the wilderness.

Salmon bake excursions are offered on Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Viking Ocean Cruises, Silversea Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Seabourn Cruise Line.

Ketchikan sits at the southernmost entrance to Alaska's Inside Passage. It is one of the most visited ports in Alaska, according to the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA). Visitors come to this part of the state for the beautiful scenery, Alaska Native culture and fresh seafood, including Alaska salmon and king crab. And they just might enjoy an entertaining lumberjack show or floatplane ride to kick off their day while in town.

The Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show

Watch Alaska's hearty lumberjacks battle British Columbia's tough woodsmen in a head-to-head competition to see who can win the title of "Bull of the Woods." The thrill-a-minute show – a guest favorite – features a 50-foot tree climb, ax throwing, log rolling, buck sawing and springboard chopping, along with plenty of lumberjack lore. Some lines, like Princess Cruises, offer just the show; it lasts a little over an hour, so there will be plenty of time for a self-guided tour of Ketchikan before heading back to the ship. You may also be able to book a combination tour that includes the show and an ax throwing lesson (plus a competition of your own), or a trip to Totem Bright State Park, where you'll learn about the significance of totem poles and the Native Tlingit and Haida cultures.

Holland America Line offers a tour with the lumberjack show and a feast of local Dungeness crabs. For another culinary option, check out the 3.5-hour excursion with Norwegian Cruise Line . It includes a visit to Saxman Native Village, where you'll sample smoked wild game meats, dine on chef-selected dishes prepared with regional ingredients, and taste local wines and beers.

Lumberjack shows are offered on Alaska voyages with Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruises , Royal Caribbean International, Carnival Cruise Line, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Silversea Cruises.

Bering Sea Crab Fisherman's Tour

Embark on the Aleutian Ballard, the Bering Sea fishing boat made famous by the Discovery Channel's "Deadliest Catch" television series. The approximately three-hour excursion gives guests a firsthand experience of what it's like to sail on the vessel as a Bering Sea crab fisherman and catch massive king crabs, octopuses and other marine life with 700-pound crab pots. The boat may also stop at nearby Annette Island, where you'll have the chance to see whales, sea lions, seals and bald eagles soaring overhead (one may even try to snag your catch!). You may also get to watch local fishermen at work.

Some lines that offer the fisherman's tour include Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruises, Royal Caribbean International, Carnival Cruise Line, Viking Ocean Cruises, Seabourn Cruise Line, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Silversea Cruises.

Misty Fjords by Floatplane or Cruise

The more than 2 million-acre Misty Fjords National Monument is one of the top attractions in Alaska . Described by naturalist and author John Muir as "the Yosemite of the North," the awe-inspiring destination is best viewed from above on a floatplane. From the sky, you'll see towering 1,000-foot waterfalls, the volcanic Revillagigedo Island, snowcapped peaks, verdant forests and 3,000-foot walls of granite descending into the fjords. On a floatplane tour, you'll also have the chance to land on the water and take in the spectacular scenery from another viewpoint.

If you're not a fan of small planes, some lines offer the option of taking a cruise from Ketchikan's harbor. You'll sail into Behm Canal surrounded by the scenery of Misty Fjords, and you may even see wildlife or bald eagle nests. You'll also cruise by Eddystone Rock, a massive volcanic spire emerging from the sea, as well as waterfalls and 3,000-foot cliffs sculpted by glaciers.

Cruise lines that offer floatplane or cruisetours of Misty Fjords include Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruises, Royal Caribbean International, Viking Ocean Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Silversea Cruises.

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Skagway is another busy and popular cruise port in Alaska. It's one of the most popular towns on the Inside Passage itinerary; its fascinating Klondike Gold Rush history dates back to 1897. Take notice of the historic false-front shops reminiscent of the gold rush days as you explore. Many of these buildings are part of the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park, and you may even see people strolling down the streets dressed in period costumes.

White Pass & Yukon Route

One of the top-rated attractions in Skagway is the White Pass Summit Scenic Railroad journey through Alaska's wilderness. The narrow-gauge railroad is an International Historic Civil Engineering Landmark – an honor shared by the Panama Canal, the Statue of Liberty and the Eiffel Tower. Dating back 125 years, the historic railway features vintage rail cars and climbs to a steep 2,865 feet at the summit over just 20.4 miles. Along the way to the summit – located at the official international border between the U.S. and Canada – you'll listen to the history of the Klondike Gold Rush while passing by Inspiration Point, Dead Horse Gulch and Bridal Veil Falls. After making a loop at the top, the train will head back down the mountain. You might even see snow on the ride if your cruise to Alaska is early in the season.

Excursions on some lines combine the rail journey with other activities, like biking on the Klondike Highway from the summit or visiting Liarsville, a gold rush trail camp. Others include a stop (and a cold beer) at the Skagway Brewing Company. In addition, some cruise providers offer the train ride in a luxury class rail car, which includes complimentary beverages, snacks and a private guide who will explain the history of the railroad as you watch the scenery pass by.

Norwegian Cruise Line's six-hour excursion features a ride on the White Pass & Yukon Route, a salmon bake at Liarsville and an adult beverage with one of the "madames" at the renowned Red Onion Saloon. Meanwhile, Silversea Cruises ' new 5.5-hour tour includes the train ride; a trip to the Yukon Suspension Bridge, which sits 65 feet above the white water rapids of the Tutshi River; and a hearty lunch of bison chili.

Cruise lines that offer the railroad (and combination) tours include Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Silversea Cruises, Viking Ocean Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises.

Musher's Camp and Sled Dog Discovery

If you want to cuddle with Alaskan husky puppies, then this excursion is for you. Norwegian Cruise Line's approximately three-hour excursion takes guests to a professional musher's summer camp in Dyea Valley, where they train sled dogs for the Yukon Quest and Iditarod races. After a thrilling ride into the rainforest on a four-wheel-drive vehicle, you'll head out on a summertime dog sled with 16 Alaskan huskies at the helm. Before puppy play time, you'll learn how the mushers care for the dogs and prepare for the races. Depending on the cruise line, some tours may end with roasting s'mores by the fire.

Some lines that offer this excursion are Norwegian Cruise Line, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, Royal Caribbean International, Carnival Cruise Line and Regent Seven Seas Cruises.

Chilkoot Trail Hike and Float Adventure

The historic Chilkoot Trail was the main route for those in search of untold riches during the famous gold rush years. Today, the trail, located in Gold Rush National Historical Park, is a rainforest full of birds and wildflowers. Excursions to the park include hikes with river floats on the Taiya River (there are no rapids) or bike tours of the trail. There are also wilderness kayaking outings to Chilkoot Lake, which is home to the five species of Pacific salmon, waterfowl, bald eagles and one of the largest brown bear populations in southeast Alaska.

Some cruise lines that offer these excursions include Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Celebrity Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Silversea Cruises, Viking Ocean Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises.

Sitka is the only community in the Inside Passage that sits on the Pacific Ocean. The small city – home to just 8,500 residents – was owned by Russia before the U.S. purchased the land in 1867. Today, you'll find remnants of this Russian heritage, like onion-shaped domes and Saint Michael's Russian Orthodox Cathedral. Sitka also has a strong Tlingit culture. In terms of shore excursions, you'll find plenty of opportunities for wildlife viewing surrounded by pristine landscapes.

Sea Otter and Wildlife Quest

Royal Caribbean International's three-hour jet boat cruise on Sitka Sound features panoramic scenery (including snow-capped peaks) and the chance to see abundant wildlife. During the tour, look for playful sea otters, whales and brown bears walking along the coast. The line also offers another tour – Sea Otters, Raptors and Bears Oh My – that features a naturalist-guided catamaran cruise followed by visits to the Alaskan Raptor Center (a rehabilitation center for birds of prey) and the Fortress of the Bear (a rescue operation for orphaned bears).

In comparison, Carnival Cruise Line 's VIP wildlife quest in search of whales, sea otters, coastal brown bears and more concludes with a feast of wild salmon cooked over a wood-fired grill, Alaska crab and prime rib at the Fin Island Lodge. Following a wildlife Zodiac cruise around the archipelago, Holland America Line's version of this excursion also visits the lodge for lunch in partnership with Food & Wine magazine.

You can find this excursion on Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Carnival Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruises, Silversea Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Viking Ocean Cruises and Seabourn Cruise Line.

The Best of Sitka

Several cruise lines offer a version of this tour, which features an exploration of the top attractions in Sitka. On this excursion, you'll visit the Fortress of the Bear in Tongass National Park to learn about the facility's work with orphaned bears. There's also a stop at Sitka National Historical Park, where the 1804 "Battle of Alaska" between the Russians and the Tlingits was fought. Here, you'll see handcarved totem poles created by skilled Tlingit artists and get to meet local Native artists to learn more. The excursion also includes a visit to the Alaska Raptor Center.

Lines that offer this excursion include Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Viking Ocean Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises.

Icy Strait Point (Hoonah)

Icy Strait Point in Hoonah may be a much smaller port than others on this list, but it is a jumping-off point for endless outdoor explorations, including whale watching tours and searching for coastal brown bears. Icy Strait Point is Alaska Native-owned and -operated and is home to the largest Native Tlingit village in Alaska. While here, explore the wilderness areas of Chichagoff Islands, visit the 1912 cannery museum, and grab lunch with fresh Alaska king and Dungeness crabs before taking a ride on the world's largest ZipRider. (Or, play it safe and plan to take that ride down the mountain before lunch.)

Whale Watching & Bear Search

The waters surrounding Icy Strait Point host the largest summer population of humpback whales in the state, especially around the Point Adolphus area. If you purchase a tour directly with the Icy Strait Point website, they'll even guarantee you'll see whales – or they'll refund your money. During the tour, look for orcas, Steller sea lions, porpoises and seals. But be sure to also gaze overhead for bald eagles and search along the shore for bears; the Spasski River Valley in the remote wilderness of Chichagof Island has one of the highest densities of coastal brown bears in the world. Some cruise lines offer a variation of this excursion that includes a boiled seafood feast back on shore at Icy Strait Point.

You can find this excursion on voyages with Princess Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Viking Ocean Cruises, Silversea Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises.

Scenic Mountain Ascent & World's Largest ZipRider

Thrill-seekers (who love heights) will jump at the chance to ride the world's largest and longest zip line, which sits more than 1,300 feet above sea level at the top of Icy Strait Point. The ride to the summit on the SkyGlider mountaintop gondola is also a rush, but the real excitement comes as you zoom down 5,330-foot zip lines with five other riders at 60 mph – with views of the forest below and Glacier Bay National Park in the distance. A break-activated landing on the beach brings riders safely back to the ground. The price also includes unlimited rides on the gondola.

Cruise lines that offer this excursion include Norwegian Cruise Line, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Silversea Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises , Viking Ocean Cruises and Seabourn Cruise Line.

A less visited port than some others on this list (according to CLIA), Seward is the ancestral home to the Alutiiq, or Sugpiaq, people. Its breathtaking natural beauty – with mountains on one side and Resurrection Bay on the other – has been shaped by glaciers over thousands of years. Top attractions in Seward include the Alaska SeaLife Center and a charming downtown area. It also offers access to Kenai Fjords National Park.

Kenai Fjords National Park Cruise

During your stop in Seward, take a full-day excursion to see the astounding beauty of Kenai Fjords National Park. The impressive fjords are surrounded by mountains standing more than 6,000 feet tall and an ecosystem rich in wildlife. While there, watch for a variety of whale species, sea otters, porpoises and sea lions, and onshore, you might see bears and mountain goats. There are also 191 documented species of birds in the park and many glaciers. As you get up close to Holgate Glacier, listen as chunks of blue ice calve into the water.

Some cruise lines, such as Viking Ocean Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises, offer this as an individual tour, while others like Holland America Line include it as part of a cruisetour. You can also book the excursion directly with a local tour operator if you're embarking or disembarking in Seward.

Haines, a small port about 20 miles north of Skagway, is best known for its Alaska Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve. The 49,000-acre preserve has the largest natural gathering of eagles during the late salmon runs and boasts pristine forests, marshlands and rivers brimming with wildlife.

Glacier Point Wilderness Safari

Norwegian Cruise Line's five-hour excursion takes guests on an adventure into the wilderness by boat while cruising North America's deepest and longest fjord, the upper Lynn Canal. You might even see breaching whales and playful sea lions en route to Glacier Point, where you'll disembark at the beach upon arrival. After a drive through the forest and a hike in the woods, you'll have unforgettable, up-close views of the Davidson Glacier by canoe.

Lines that offer this excursion include Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line and Silversea Cruises. Holland America Line offers this excursion from Skagway.

Eagle Preserve Rafting Float Adventure

Look for bald eagles soaring overhead as you raft down the gentle Chilkat River through the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve. The waters are overflowing with salmon that come to spawn, serving as food for as many as 400 bald eagles living in the Chilkat Valley. Don't be surprised to see brown bears or 1,600-pound moose coming to feast along the riverbank during your rafting adventure.

Some lines that offer this excursion include Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Silversea Cruises and Seabourn Cruise Lin e. Holland America Line, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Viking Ocean Cruises host this excursion from Skagway.

Why Trust U.S. News Travel

Gwen Pratesi is a U.S. News & World Report contributor and an avid travel adventurer who fell in love with Alaska on her first visit to the state many years ago. She's returned several times both by land and sea to view wildlife and chase the northern lights in one of the best places on the planet to view them. She's even considered moving to The Great Land as a full-time resident. Pratesi used her deep knowledge of Alaska and the cruise industry to write this article.

You might also be interested in:

  • The Best Time to Cruise to Alaska
  • The Top Alaska Cruise Lines
  • Alaska Cruise Packing List
  • The Top Things to Do in Alaska
  • The Best Cruise Insurance Plans

Copyright 2024 U.S. News & World Report

Tour attendees looking at crabs on the Bering Sea Crab Fisherman’s Tour.

Eight passengers stranded on African island after Norwegian cruise ship left without them

A dream cruise vacation has turned into a nightmare for eight passengers left stranded on the African island of São Tomé and Príncipe after their ship left without them because they were late to return from a private tour.

The tourists — six from the U.S. and two from Australia — were aboard the Norwegian Dawn, a Norwegian cruise line ship , which departed from Cape Town, South Africa, on March 20 for a 21-day voyage up the coast of Africa set to end in Barcelona, Spain, on April 10.

But on Wednesday, the group of eight tourists was late to return to the ship by more than an hour for the all-aboard time of 3 p.m. from a private excursion on the island, which was not organized by the cruise line.

Jay and Jill Campbell of South Carolina were part of the group that was left behind.

They said that their tour’s operator notified the cruise captain that they were going to be late to rejoin the ship and that the local Coast Guard tried to get them on the vessel but that they weren’t allowed to board.

As a result, the couple and the rest of the group have been stranded for days on the island off Nigeria, grappling with language, currency issues and complicated travel to catch up with the ship.

“The lovely people of São Tomé were very gracious, very hospitable. They had reached out as much as they could to help us find hotels,” Jay Campbell said on NBC's "TODAY" show Tuesday morning.

“We were able to get to a tour agency there to arrange flights to the next port of call. ... Very difficult process — you’re dealing with multiple languages, language barriers, you’re dealing with different currencies ... finding someone that even has dollars ... trying to get an agent to understand where we need to get to.

"It’s one of those ‘You can’t get there from here,’" he added.

A Norwegian spokesperson called the incident a “very unfortunate situation” and said, “Guests are responsible for ensuring they return to the ship at the published time.”

The cruise line said that after the guests failed to return, their passports were delivered to local port agents, in line with protocol. The company said it was working with local authorities to understand “the requirements and visas needed for the guests to reboard the ship at the next available port of call.”

On Monday, the guests had made arrangements to rejoin the ship in Banjul, Gambia, but the ship was unable to safely dock there because of “adverse weather conditions” and “tidal restrictions,” Norwegian said. The guests were then contacted and provided with information to rejoin the ship at Dakar, Senegal, on Tuesday. 

Jill Campbell said they traveled through seven countries in 48 hours to arrive in Senegal on Monday night.

But the couple was reconsidering whether they even wanted to return to the cruise.

"We are considering whether or not we are going to board the ship. It is in dock here in Senegal," she said. "We believe there was a basic duty of care that they had forgotten about, so it does concern us."

"After what we witnessed, we truly believe that although there’s a set of rules or policies that the ship may have followed, they followed those rules too rigidly. I believe that they really forgot that they are people working in the hospitality industry and really the safety and well-being of the customers should be their first priority," she added.

Ultimately, the eight passengers did rejoin the cruise before 8:30 a.m. ET Tuesday in Dakar, Senegal, Norwegian told NBC News in an e-mail Tuesday evening, after this story originally published.

Norwegian said the passengers were responsible for making their own travel arrangements to rejoin the ship.

"Despite the series of unfortunate events outside of our control, we will be reimbursing these eight guests for their travel costs from Banjur, Gambia to Dakar, Senegal," a cruise line spokesperson said in a statement. "We remain in communication with the guests and are providing additional information as it becomes available."

A silver lining of the catastrophe was that the Campbells were able to connect with another Norwegian Dawn passenger — Julia Lenkoff, 80 — who was also left on the island, but for a medical reason.

Lenkoff was on a different day tour Wednesday. She had "medically disembarked" from the cruise to seek local treatment on that day, Norwegian said.

Norwegian said that its care team tried to call Lenkoff several times and was unable to reach her and that it worked with its port agent in São Tomé and Príncipe for updates on her health.

The Campbells met Lenkoff and were able to put her in contact with her family in California, who flew her home — a move Lenkoff's daughter said "saved her life."

"She's a world traveler. She travels all the time. So this was going to be one of her bucket list trips, because she's been to 120 countries so far, and she wanted to get to 130," her daughter, Lana Lenkoff Geis, said in an interview that aired Tuesday on "TODAY."

Norwegian said Lenkoff was escorted on a flight to Lisbon, Portugal, then put in the care of airport staff members to continue her journey back to the U.S., where she has safely returned.

Breaking News Reporter


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    Seabourn has a shore excursion reservations team that can help assist you with tour bookings or answer any questions you might have. Our shore excursion specialists can be reached at 800-984-3225 (USA or Canada) or 800-260-639 (AU) or +1 206-626-9187 from Monday - Friday 7:00am to 4:00pm (Pacific Time).

  22. Shore Excursion

    Explore shore excursions with Royal Caribbean. Start planning your next vacation by finding the best things to do on your cruise.

  23. Holland America's 'Have It All' Package Worth It for Couple, Review

    For just $55 a day, my cruise felt way more luxurious. Rebecca Reuter. 2024-04-05T16:07:01Z ... It includes perks like a beverage package, ship credit for shore excursions, onboard WiFi, and ...

  24. 11 Best Nassau, Bahamas Excursions Cruisers Should Try

    Most of these excursions in Nassau, Bahamas hit all the highlights, including the Queen's Staircase, Fort Charlotte, the Government House, Fort Montagu, Fort Fincastle, local rum distilleries ...

  25. St. Maarten: Not Just Another Caribbean Cruise Port

    From snorkeling adventures to exhilarating water sports and cultural experiences, St. Maarten offers a myriad of shore excursions for every traveler. Island Canvassing Here's your chance to experience the wonders of both St. Maarten and Saint Martin in a grand tour beginning with a warm welcome, complete with a floral necklace and red carpet ...

  26. Alaskan Coastal Brunch Escape & Waterfront Cruise

    We're here to answer them. Call us at the number below to speak with a Shore Excursion Specialist. 1.866.625.1167. 1.866.625.1167. Alaska Expedition Vessel & Wildlife Quest. ALDEA MAHAHUA, MEXICO THROUGH THE AGES.

  27. Cruise Excursions

    Shore Excursioneer is your most competitive independent partner for Cruise Shore Excursions. We are significantly expanding our current offer of 1,109 quality cruise shore excursions in our 114 cruise ports of call, as of Apr. 04th 05:37 am (EST) :), and we are adding new cruise ports of call/destinations with brand new, competitively priced and attractive cruise excursions on a daily basis.

  28. The 16 Best Alaska Cruise Excursions for 2024

    The Mendenhall Glacier helicopter excursion is offered on Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, Carnival Cruise Line, Viking Ocean Cruises, Seabourn Cruise ...

  29. Eight passengers stranded on African island after Norwegian cruise ship

    But on Wednesday, the group of eight tourists was late to return to the ship by more than an hour for the all-aboard time of 3 p.m. from a private excursion on the island, which was not organized ...