Alaska Cruise & Seattle to Los Angeles Self Drive.
Holiday Ref: 16220
Available May - September 2018. Call for details.
Begin this amazing holiday with a pre-cruise stay in Seattle the ‘Emerald City’ nestled between the snow-capped Mount Rainier and the shoreline of Lake Washington, and the home of ‘Starbucks’.
Take a 7 night journey to Alaska onboard the luxury Ruby Princess. Live and breathe Alaska during this journey listening to the Alaskan storytelling in Skagway or why not have breakfast on the balcony while sailing along ice floes of dramatic Glacier Bay.
Take a post-cruise trip of a lifetime and drive the length of the stunning Pacific Coast. You will find yourself wanting to stop every few minutes just to photograph every new scenic vista!
Upon arrival make your way (independently) to your overnight hotel. Remainder of the day is at leisure. Overnight: Seattle
Day at leisure to explore. Take a City Tour (not included) or visit Pike Place Market one of Seattle most popular tourist destination. Or take a ride to the top of the Space Needle for spectacular view over the city. Overnight: Seattle
In 1880, it was slow going for Joe Juneau and Richard Harris as they searched for gold with the help of Native guides. After climbing mountains, forging streams and facing countless difficulties, they found nuggets "as large as beans."
From their discovery came three of the largest gold mines in the world. By the end of World War II, more than $150 million in gold had been mined. Eventually the mines closed, but the town Joe Juneau founded became the capital
of Alaska and the business of gold was replaced by the business of government.
Some 30,000 people live in Juneau. Its total area makes it one of the biggest towns, in size, in the world. Only Kiruna, Sweden, and Sitka, Alaska, exceed Juneau's 3,248 square miles.
Today Juneau is famous not only for gold and government but also for its breathtakingly beautiful glaciers and stunning views of both water and mountains
Skagway was the gateway to the gold fields for the thousands who flocked to Alaska and the Yukon with the hope of striking it rich. Skagway may have boasted the shortest route to the Klondike, but it wasn't the easiest.
Over 100 years ago, the White Pass route through the Coast Mountains and the shorter but steeper Chilkoot Trail were used by countless stampeders. Many a would-be miner perished on the treacherous Chilkoot Trail.
The gold rush was a boon and by 1898, Skagway was Alaska's largest town with a population of about 20,000. Hotels, saloons, dance halls and gambling houses prospered. But when the gold yield dwindled in 1900, so did the population as miners quickly shifted to new finds in Nome.
Today, Skagway has less than 1,000 residents. It still retains the flavor of the gold rush era
Princess is one of a select few cruise lines permitted to cruise the pristine waters of Glacier Bay, the highlight of our 7-day Voyage of the Glaciers cruise. Just west of Juneau, this breathtaking national park and preserve boasts some of the world's most spectacular tidewater glaciers, such as Margerie Glacier, which often drops colossal chunks of ice into the sea. Not surprisingly, Glacier Bay National Park and its epic ice giants are part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site comprising Alaska's magnificent park system.
During your scenic cruise, friendly Park Rangers will join the ship to share their knowledge of this amazing place and host a fun Junior Ranger program for kids. They may even be able to help you identify Glacier Bay's abundant wildlife, including humpback whales, sea otters, porpoises, harbor seals, black bears, mountain goats, bald eagles and large colonies of seabirds.
Take in the awe-inspiring scenery as you enjoy an unforgettable day of sailing through this dazzling park, where you'll glide along emerald waters and past calving icebergs, and can breathe in the crisp, fresh air to your heart's content
Ketchikan is known as Alaska's "First City" because it's the first major community travelers come to as they journey north. Located on an island, Ketchikan began life as an Indian fishing camp. The name Ketchikan comes from a Tlingit phrase that means "eagle with spread-out wings," a reference to a waterfall near town.
In the early 1900s, when gold was Alaska's claim to fame, fishing and timber industries were established in Ketchikan. The growth of these industries helped make this Inside Passage port Alaska's fourth-largest city.
Visitors to Ketchikan will be intrigued by its rich Native heritage, which includes the world's oldest collection of totem poles at Totem Heritage Center. The Haida, Tlingit and Tsimshian are all a part of the city's colorful history. Ketchikan, with its abundance of salmon, is also a sportfishing paradise. Sightseers will be impressed with both the scenic town and its surroundings, especially Misty Fjords National Monument.
Victoria exudes old-world charm and fragrant and colorful flowers are everywhere. Founded in 1843 by James Douglas of the Hudson's Bay Company, the city was first known as Fort Victoria. By 1848, Vancouver Island was a British colony and Victoria was its capital.
In 1858, Victoria was a tent city and the base for some 25,000 prospectors on their way to the Frasier River gold fields. When Vancouver Island was incorporated with mainland British Columbia in 1868, Victoria became the capital of the entire province.
Although it's a port city, Victoria is not as industrially oriented as Vancouver. The harbors, especially Inner Harbour, are dotted with pleasure craft, ferries and floatplanes. The city is renowned for its beautiful gardens, charming houses and very British feel.
Disembark your cruise ship and make your way (independently) to your overnight hotel. The remainder of the day is yours. Overnight: Seattle
Depart Seattle today en route to Mt. Rainier National Park, one of the outstanding scenic wonders of the Northwest. Cross the Columbia River for a stop at Mt. St. Helens that will reveal the devastation created by the 1980 eruption of this active volcano. Continue to Portland in the evening. Overnight: Portland
The dramatic coastline of Oregon has panoramic vistas and picturesque images for you to enjoy today. The peaceful drive through ever-changing terrain will take you through small towns which reflect the essence of the American Spirit. May we suggest packing a picnic and pulling off the highway at one of the many trails you will find along the way. Overnight: Redwood National Park
Pass former Russian fishing settlements as you continue your drive today. The giant redwoods are protected in state and national parks that are World Heritage sites. Overnight: Eureka
Follow the coastline of California south to the village of Mendocino. The town of Mendocino is a Historic Preservation District on the National Register of Historic Places with a superb coastal setting and is the perfect place to linger before continuing south to San Francisco. There will be time to explore the city this evening. Overnight: San Francisco
Enjoy a wonderful day touring the city. See places like Union Square, the Golden Gate Bridge, and Fishermans Wharf, where you can take a short boat trip to tour infamous Alcatraz Island. Overnight: San Francisco
Today's drive takes you down the California coast to Monterey. Stroll along Fisherman's Wharf and Cannery Row before continuing along the stunning landscape of 17-Mile Drive en route to the village of Carmel. Overnight: Monterey/Carmel
Follow Pacific Coast Highway south along the Big Sur Peninsula. On the way enjoy views of the Pacific Ocean pounding the cliffs and rocks below. Why not take time to visit Hearst Castle and learn about its fascinating history. Overnight in the heart of California's central coast. Overnight: Big Sur
Continue south today passing through Santa Barbara, yet another beautiful stretch of coast in Malibu and the seaside town of Santa Monica prior to arriving in the Los Angeles area. Overnight: Los Angeles
A full day to explore Hollywood or Beverly Hills. Go behind the scenes at Universal Studios Hollywood, or head to Anaheim's ever-popular Disneyland Park. Overnight: Los Angeles