Direct-to-the-Wilderness® rail service

Princess Cruises exclusive Direct-to-the-Wilderness service allows you to step off your cruise ship in Whittier onto your unique Princess rail service and arrive at your Princess wilderness lodge that same afternoon. Or, on southbound itineraries, leave the Denali area and enjoy a direct link to your awaiting cruise ship in Whittier. Because fewer transfers and less time waiting makes for a more relaxing and hassle-free trip.

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Princess Cruisetours


Denali Explorer & On Your Own Cruisetours

Denali Explorer cruisetours include up to four nights at Princess wilderness lodges at Denali.


Most tours include exclusive Direct-to-the-Wilderness® rail service and all include the Natural History Tour into Denali National Park. ( Optional Tundra Wilderness Tour Upgrade )


On Your Own options have no scheduled activities so you can customize how you want to spend your free time.  3 days on land from just $299 more than a 7-day cruise!* With no sightseeing activities included, you’ll have the flexibility to create your own adventure with optional land excursions.

Find out More About Denali Explorer and On Your Own Cruisetours


Off The Beaten Path Cruisetours

These cruisetours include key benefits of the Denali Explorer itineraries, plus visits to less-frequented regions like Copper River and Wrangell–St. Elias National Park, and the Kenai Peninsula.

Find Out More About Off The Beaten Path Cruisetours


Connoisseur Escorted Cruisetours

These deluxe escorted cruisetours represent the highest level of service with a tour director on land and most meals included. They include up to four nights at a combination of both Mt. McKinley and Denali Princess wilderness lodges, with enhanced sightseeing experiences, such as the longer Tundra Wilderness Tour into Denali National Park. Plus, there are options to visit the Kenai Peninsula and Wrangell–St. Elias National Park. 


Find out More About Connoisseur Cruisetours


Princess Cruises® Alaska  

Alaska Cruises Direct





Our Ideal Alaska Cruise Tour

A Personal Look-In To Our Vacation     

Raye & Marty Trencher

Editors and Publishers

Cruise Traveler Magazine


Our Ideal Alaska Cruisetour - A Personal Look-In To Our Vacation

There's no better way to experience Alaska that with a Princess cruisetour. A cruisetour combines a 7-night Gulf of Alaska cruise with 3 to 8 nights on land for the ultimate Alaska vacation. You'll experience glaciers, wildlife, national parks, wilderness, the finest lodges and, of course, a world-class cruise.

Here is our excerpted day by day Journal of The Ideal Alaska Vacation

Day 1
Sail from Vancouver

Embarkation was a breeze, and we were excited when we found our shore excursion tickets waiting for us in our cabin. Now we can relax without standing on line. We made sure we had plenty of film in the camera as we set sail for Alaska under the Lion's Gate Bridge. We took advantage of Anytime Dining with a late dinner at the Bayou Cafe' Coral Princess' exclusive New Orleans restaurant.

Day 2
Sail The Inside Passage

We slept in this morning and enjoyed room service and the spectacular view from the comfort of our own private balcony. Spent the afternoon listening to the naturalists talk about Alaska marine life and whale watching as we cruised the Inside Passage. I discovered a cozy spot in the library to read my book and commented to my wife that the ship has an intimate feel, despite its grand size.

Day 3

We experienced the breathtaking beauty of Misty Fjords National Monument with a flightseeing trip that left us awestruck. We learned about Tongass National Forest from the U.S. Forest Service Ranger onboard. Then, scheduled a Sweedish massage in the Lotus' Spa before dinner.

Day 4

We woke up in Alaska's capital with a full day of sightseeing ahead. Enjoyed a buffet breakfast in the Horizon Court before getting started. Spent the afternoon on an exciting Mendenhall Glacier float trip. Then, dropped in to hear a presentation from Libby Riddles, the first woman to win the Iditarod.

Day 5

We thoroughly enjoyed our White Pass and Yukon Route rail adventure, an excursion we signed up for long before the cruise. We then saw a performance by famous storyteller Buckwheat Donohoe who made a special appearance on board the ship.

Day 6
Glacier Bay National Park

We enjoyed a champagne breakfast on our balcony this morning in front of Margerie Glacier. Listened to a narration by the National Park Ranger then enjoyed the Taste of Alaska buffet on deck for dinner.

Day 7
College Fjord

We entered College Fjord and the Captain took us all the way to Harvard Glacier at the end of the fjord. We passed right next to Bryn Mawr and Smith Glaciers and saw ice floes all around us. Took plenty of pictures of the porpoises, sea otters and killer whales swimming through Prince William Sound. It was absolutely amazing.

Day 8
Whittier to Cooper River

Our cruise has come to an end, but our adventure is just beginning. Now it's time to see the "real" Alaska. We enjoyed breakfast onboard, then disembarked for a scenic catamaran trip across Prince William Sound to Valdez - Alaska's "Little Switzerland". We saw the terminus of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline and drove right up to Worthington Glacier and Bridal Veil Falls on the way to Cooper River. We arrived at the Cooper River Princess Wilderness Lodge.

Day 9
Cooper River

We had a day at leisure at the gateway to Wrangell-St.Elias National park, the largest national park in the U.S. ( as big as six Yellowstones).
Princess' Alaskan Outfitters set up the perfect day for us. I fished the famous Cooper River while my wife visited the old town of McCarthy and once thriving turn-of-the-century Kennicott Mines. Even walked right up to Kennicott Glacier.
We enjoyed the signature Alaskan Cuisine at the lodge and warmed up by the fireplace as we watched the alpenglow on the mountains.

Day 10
Cooper River to Fairbanks

We walked the nature trail surrounding the lodge this morning. Then took a motorcoach trip along the scenic Richardson Highway across the Alaskan Range en route to Fairbanks. We spent the night at the Fairbanks Princess Riverside Lodge.

Day 11
Fairbanks to Denali

We boarded the Midnight Sun Express rail for our journey to Denali National Park. Breakfast on board with a breathtaking view as a backdrop. After checking into the Denali Princess Wilderness Lodge we decided on a flighseeing adventure. Landing on a glacier at Mt. McKinley's base camp.

Day 12
Denali to Mt. McKinley

We woke up and felt refreshed knowing the great outdoors was just beyond the lodge. We caught a glimpse of Mt. McKinley as we approached Talkeetna by motorcoach.

Day 13
Mt. McKinley to Anchorage

We enjoyed a morning at our own pace on a guided horseback ride through the wilderness. Then we were off to Talkeetna, where we board the train. The huge doomed windows and friendly car managers really made the trip enjoyable. We spend our last night in Anchorage, saying good by to the friends we met.

Day 14
Return Home

Out tour ended this morning in Anchorage. We're getting ready to head home, but already we're making plans for our next Princess cruise vacation.


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See Why Princess Cruises was voted  Best Cruise Line in Alaska

Alaska Cruises: Princess Wilderness Lodges

Strategically located at Alaska’s legendary national parks, our wilderness lodges offer excellent accommodations, authentic Alaskan dining experiences, and the same warm, welcoming service that you’ve come to expect on every Princess Cruises vacation.

Denali Princess Wilderness Lodge

Alaska Cruises: Denali Princess Wilderness Lodge

Nestled in a prime location near the entrance to Denali National Park, this gorgeous lodge is the perfect starting point for your wilderness adventure.

Denali Princess Wilderness Lodge »

Copper River Princess Wilderness Lodge

Alaska Cruises: Copper River Princess Wilderness Lodge

On a bluff overlooking the largest national park, this lodge has a wall of windows featuring dramatic views of Wrangell-St. Elias.

Copper River Princess Wilderness Lodge »

Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge

Alaska Cruises: Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge

North America's tallest mountain provides a stunning backdrop to the picture-perfect setting for this wilderness retreat just south of Denali National Park.

Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge »

Kenai Princess Wilderness Lodge

Alaska Cruises: Kenai Princess Wilderness Lodge

Top-notch salmon fishing is only steps away from this well-appointed lodge set in the mountains overlooking the beautiful Kenai River.

Kenai Princess Wilderness Lodge »

Princess Alaska Lodges
& Direct to the Wilderness Rail Service Brochure

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Did You Know: Grizzly bears have been a threatened species since 1975 in the Lower 48 states? Alaska however has over 32,000 grizzlies. Considering Alaska's population is only 670,000, that's 1 bear for every 21 people. Alaska is home to magnificent glaciers, giant halibut, hardy outdoorsmen.... and lots of moose. Alaska has 39 mountain ranges. Did you know? The larger ranges include: Alaska Range, which includes 20,320 foot Mt. McKinley, the continent's tallest peak , Aleutian Range, a volcano-ridden range on the Alaska Peninsula, Brooks Range, which is above the Arctic Circle; the Continental Divide runs through it and Boundary Ranges, along the Canadian border of the Inside Passage.

" Our trip was excellent. The room, with the upgrades, was amazing! We saw many eagles (bald and golden), one bear, many whales, including one breach, seals, one bear, one wolf, moose and carribou, and many smaller animals.. If we travelled during salmon run, we probably would have seen more bear and eagles. The scenery is to die for, the vistas spectacular. The ship was great; service, food, etc were all great. Thanks for everything. "

Larry Seidler - Island Princess

Ask an Alaska visitor about his or her trip and you'll likely hear tales about the state's exotic and awe inspiring wildlife. Chances are, you'll be regaled with stories and photos of the encounters with Alaska's wildlife. And who can blame them? Pictures of Alaska's moose, bears, caribou, bald eagles, whales and dozens of other wild species can be a trip's best (and most memorable) souvenirs. For those who cruise Alaska by sea, there's the opportunity to spot the breathtaking breach of a humpback whale or soaring seabirds such as puffins, terns, gulls, eiders and many others. Learn more about wildlife viewing in Alaska