More of Alaska -- more than 100 times more -- is covered by glacier ice than is settled by human beings.

  • Grand Pacific Glacier (Glacier Bay National Park): Two vast glaciers of deep blue meet at the top of an utterly barren fjord. Three intimidating walls of ice surround boats that pull close to the glaciers.
  • Childs Glacier (Cordova): Out the Copper River Highway from Cordova, this is a participatory glacier-viewing experience. The glacier is cut by the Copper River, which is 1/4 mile broad; standing on the opposite shore (unless you're up in the viewing tower), you have to be ready to run like hell when the creaking, popping ice gives way and a huge berg falls into the river, potentially swamping the picnic area. On one occasion, a glacier-generated wave left a salmon in a tree. Even when the glacier isn't calving, you can feel the ice groaning in your gut.
  • Exit Glacier (Seward): You can park near the glacier and walk the rest of the way on an easy, short gravel path. The vast wall of the glacier towers above like a huge blue sculpture, the spires of broken ice close enough to breathe a freezer-door chill down on watchers.
  • Western Prince William Sound: On a boat from Whittier, you can see a couple of dozen glaciers in a day. Some of these are the amazing tidewater glaciers that dump huge, office building-size spires of ice into the ocean, each setting off a terrific splash and outward-radiating sea wave.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.