Ketchikan Adventures: Must-Do Excursions in the Alaskan Wilderness

Ketchikan, also known as Alaska’s “First City” is located along the shores of the Tongass Narrows in Southeast Alaska. This charming fishing town is a gateway to the stunning beauty of the Last Frontier. Ketchikan is well known for its rich Alaskan Native heritage, vibrant local arts scene, and abundant wildlife. Ketchikan offers a perfect blend of beautiful landscapes and cultural experiences for all. Get ready to marvel at totem poles, go fishing for salmon, and immerse yourself in the unique charm of this coastal gem. Whether you’re here for adventure, relaxation, or a bit of both, Ketchikan is sure to capture your heart from the moment you arrive. Below we have a list of recommended excursions to do during your stay in Ketchikan!

  • Totem Bight State Park

Discover the cultural heritage and majestic beauty of Totem Bight State Park in Ketchikan, Alaska. This must-visit destination offers tourists a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in the rich history of the Alaskan Native tribes through intricately carved totem poles and traditional artifacts. The stunning scenic views of the Tongass Narrows provide a picturesque backdrop for visitors to explore the forest trails and learn about the significance of totem art in indigenous culture. One of the totem poles located at our state park made a feature in the first original version of the United States passport. Totem Bight State Park is a place you won’t want to miss during your time in Ketchikan.

  • Wildlife & Whale Watching Quest

Embark on an unforgettable wildlife and whale watching tour that will take your breath away. As you venture into the pristine Alaskan waters outside Ketchikan, be prepared to witness majestic humpback whales breaching the surface and otters floating among the kelp forests. On a tour like this you will have the opportunity to see humpback whales or pods of orcas! But that’s not all, keep an eye out for bald eagles soaring overhead and harbor seals basking in the sun along the coastline. This journey is an opportunity to witness the most magnificent creatures on Earth, making it a must-do experience in Alaska!

  • Salmon fishing

Experience world-class salmon fishing in the waters around Ketchikan. Join a guided fishing charter for a chance to reel in your own catch of the day. Experienced guides lead these tours, sharing their knowledge of the local waters and helping participants hone their fishing skills. They’ll provide all the necessary gear, including fishing rods, bait, and equipment, ensuring that you have everything you need for a successful outing. Alaska is famous for its five species of salmon: king (chinook), silver (coho), red (sockeye), pink (humpy), and chum (dog). Each species has its peak season, with salmon runs typically occurring between May and September depending on the location and species.

  • Rainforest Wildlife Sanctuary & Totem Walk

Take a guided tour through the rainforest to discover local wildlife, such as bears, eagles, and salmon. The guided walking tour at the Rainforest Wildlife Sanctuary typically lasts about 2 hours, during which visitors have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the beauty and tranquility of the lush rainforest environment. Knowledgeable guides lead guests through the sanctuary, providing informative commentary about the local flora and fauna. The tour offers a chance to spot a variety of wildlife. Visitors can also learn about the rich cultural history of the area and its significance to the indigenous people who call it home. Overall, the Rainforest Wildlife Sanctuary excursion is a delightful and educational experience that allows guests to connect with nature and appreciate the wonders of the Alaskan wilderness.

  • Sea Kayaking

Get adventurous and take on a sea kayaking tour in Ketchikan where you can immerse yourself directly in the beauty of the Tongass Narrows. Paddle through the tranquil waters surrounded by our towering mountains, Tongass National rainforest, and abundant wildlife. Explore our remote islands, and hidden coves while keeping an eye out for wildlife such as bald eagles and sea otters. During your kayaking excursion an experienced guide will give you fun information and insight about the local ecosystem and its inhabitants. This is a can’t miss activity if you’re craving adventure!

  • Saxman Native Village

Visit Saxman Native Village to see traditional Tlingit culture come to life through dance performances, totem carving demonstrations, and interactive exhibits. Saxman is a village located near Ketchikan, Alaska, known for its rich Native American history and vibrant totem pole park. Visitors can explore the traditional Tlingit culture, watch skilled artisans at work, and admire the impressive totem pole collection. Saxman Village offers a unique and immersive experience, showcasing the heritage and artistry of the indigenous people of the region. It’s a must-visit destination for anyone interested in Alaska’s indigenous culture and history.



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