View this email in your browser
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Media Center
In this January Alaska Travel News Bulletin you will find:
2014 Alaska travel forecast
 
Alaska’s tourism industry continued to grow in 2013 and is anticipating a quality return in 2014, with a total of 30 large cruise ships scheduled to call in Alaska, an increase in itineraries for small-ship cruise lines and increased international and domestic flight service to the Last Frontier.
 
Princess Cruises’ Crown Princess will make its debut as the cruise line’s largest ship in the state to date, accommodating up to 3,082 passengers and sailing the popular “Voyage of the Glaciers” route that runs through the Gulf of Alaska. Summer 2014 will also see the return of Princess Cruises’ small-ship cruising on the Pacific Princess, which will sail the Inside Passage from Vancouver. Celebrity Cruises and Norwegian Cruises will add Icy Strait Point, a small-ship cruise port located 30 miles west of Juneau, as a port of call for two ships, the Celebrity Solstice and Norwegian Pearl.
 
Small-ship cruise line Alaskan Dream Cruises is adding a new nine-day itinerary that will sail round trip from Sitka, stopping in the Tlingit village of Kake, Petersburg, Juneau and at the company’s exclusive Orca Point Lodge. Un-Cruise Adventures has added a new vessel, the 88-passenger Legacy, to its fleet for 2014. The replica coastal steamer will sail 10 weeklong adventures between Ketchikan and Juneau and will highlight historical and culturally significant destinations in Southeast Alaska.
 
Travelers to Alaska in summer 2014 will now have access to flights between Fairbanks and Dawson City, Yukon, with nine flights per week scheduled on Air North. The flights will be utilized by Holland America Line for its Land + Sea Journeys to reduce guest travel time between Dawson City and Fairbanks from two days by bus to a short, one-hour flight. Yakutia Airlines and AirRussia.US announced the return of seasonal flights between Anchorage and Petropavlovsk, scheduled to operate for 10 weeks on Saturdays, running July 12 – Sept. 13. On the domestic front, Delta Airlines announced seasonal flights between Seattle and Juneau beginning May 29, and has added an additional flight to its seasonal Seattle to Anchorage route.
 
Below are some highlights of new tours and products, anniversaries and events that visitors to Alaska can look forward to in 2014. For more information on planning a trip to Alaska, visit www.TravelAlaska.com.
New products and tours

Statewide
  • Princess Cruises is introducing the largest ship in the state to date, the 3,082-passenger Crown Princess, as well as the return of small-ship cruising on the Pacific Princess. (www.princess.com)
  • Holland America Line has re-branded its CruiseTour program as Land + Sea Journeys to include hotel accommodation updates, shorter train travel and an added one-hour flight from Dawson City, Yukon to Fairbanks, Alaska. (www.hollandamerica.com)
  • John Hall’s Alaska Cruises & Tours newest itinerary, “Three Bears of Alaska,” highlights Alaska’s famous bears in their natural habitat with a 17-day land, rail, cruise and flight route from the trip’s most southern point, Vancouver, to its most northern point, Kaktovik. (www.kissalaska.com)
Southcentral
  • Alyeska Resort opened the 2013-14 season with an upgrade to Chair 6, a four-person seating lift with a new high-speed detachable quad that accommodates a higher capacity of skiers with shorter lift times while relieving congestion on the upper mountain. (www.alyeskaresort.com)
  • The newly completed Bear Education Awareness Research Sanctuary (BEARS) at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center allows visitors to walk on an elevated boardwalk above the bear enclosure for a closer look at the bears’ habitats. (www.alaskawildlife.org)
  • The Anchorage Museum is featuring its first comprehensive exhibition about the Dena’ina Athabascan people, exploring the lives, language, traditions and history of the people who first called Southcentral Alaska home. The exhibition is on view through Jan. 12, 2014. (www.anchoragemuseum.org)
  • Denali Zipline Tours out of Talkeetna is expanding operations to Seward at an 80-acre park that will serve as the new grounds for high-flying fun and sightseeing amongst the beautiful backdrop of Alaska forests. (www.denaliziplinetours.com)
  • In 2014, Kenai Fjords Tours will add a new 150-passenger catamaran to its 12-vessel fleet, offering more visitors the chance to travel through Resurrection Bay and Kenai Fjords National Park to view wildlife and glaciers. (www.kenaifjords.com)
  • The recently renovated Kenai Fjords Wilderness Lodge is offering a new culinary program for 2014 that includes behind-the-scenes access to the lodge kitchen, where guests will learn the basics of handling and cooking fresh Alaska seafood. (www.kenaifjordslodge.com)
  • In addition to scenic tours and charter services, Talkeetna Air Taxi is partnering with Alaska Nature Guides to provide a remote drop-off in the Talkeetna Mountains. Guests will be dropped off with a guide to embark on an Alaska wilderness adventure catered to their hiking skills. (www.talkeetnaair.com)
  • Tanalian Aviation has introduced its “City of Lights” sunset helicopter tour, circling Anchorage and the surrounding bowl, for a scenic viewing of the Chugach Mountains, Cook Inlet coastline and the metropolitan skyline. (www.tanalianaviation.net)
  • Winterlake Lodge is launching three new outdoor excursions this winter, including two overnight excursions as well as new cross-country ski opportunities on nearby Wolverine Mountain. (www.withinthewild.com)
  • High Mark Distillery, a new distillery located in Sterling, uses a secret family recipe, mixed with ideas borrowed from backwoods jack makers, to create its popular Nickel Back Apple Jack, a smooth, apple-pie-flavored liqueur. (highmarkdistillery.com)
Interior
  • In mid-February, National Park Service Alaska will plow the Denali park road west of headquarters, a month or so earlier than usual. It will open up a recreational opportunity for skiers and snowshoers, as well as mountain viewers, at Mile 12, the new Mountain Vista Rest Area. (www.nps.gov/dena/planyourvisit/winter-activities.htm)
  • Friends of Creamer’s Field will offer one-hour guided walks around the Creamer’s Field Migratory Waterfowl Refuge every Tuesday and Thursday throughout the winter season. (www.creamersfield.org)
Inside Passage
  • New for 2014, Southeast Alaska Independent Living (SAIL) provides both information and services to visitors with limited mobility or physical, visual, or hearing impairments in the Juneau area. (www.sailinc.org)
  • Ursa Major Distilling became the second Alaska spirit product to be accepted into the Alaska Grown program, which recognizes Alaska businesses working together to source products locally. (www.ursamajordistilling.com)
  • Alaska Sea Adventures is offering visitors the unique experience of viewing wildlife in Alaska during spring herring trips in the 2014 season. The small luxury cruise operator says guests will experience views of bald eagles, whales, seals, sea lions and various seabirds. (www.yachtalaska.com)
  • A rearticulated humpback whale skeleton will be on display in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve as part of an outdoor exhibit the park expects to open by spring 2014. (www.nps.gov/glba)
  • Un-Cruise Adventures has added a new vessel to the fleet for the 2014 season, the 88-passenger Legacy, which will sail 10 weeklong adventures between Ketchikan and Juneau. (www.un-cruise.com)
  • Alaskan Dream Cruises is adding the nine-day “Point Adolphus, Frederick Sound & Stephens Passage Explorer” cruise, sailing round trip from Sitka, calling at the Tlingit village of Kake, Petersburg, Juneau, and the company’s exclusive Orca Point Lodge. (www.alaskandreamcruises.com)
  • Port Chilkoot Distillery, based in Haines, is a new distillery producing small-batch whiskey, gin and vodka. The micro-distillery recently released 12 Volts Moonshine, an un-aged corn whiskey. (www.portchilkootdistillery.com).
  • Wrangell’s Alaska Charters & Adventures is now offering full-day whale watching tours on the calm, pristine waters of the Inside Passage. A custom-built 35-foot aluminum cabin-style boat, enough to fit six passengers, provides wildlife viewing potential from any seat. (www.alaskaupclose.com)
Southwest
  • Kodiak will remember the 1964 Good Friday Earthquake and tsunami with special events and story telling in the new Kodiak Public Library during the week of March 25, 2014. An earthquake simulator will also be available at the annual Crab Festival in May. (www.kodiak.org)
New events and 2014 anniversaries
  • In 2014, visitors to Wrangell can experience the fifth anniversary of the Alaska Bear Festival, held July 23-27, celebrating the bears of Alaska. Activities include workshops; bear symposiums, kids activities, trips to Anan Wildlife Observatory and music. (www.alaskabearfest.org)
  • The Valdez Museum’s “Remembering Old Valdez” exhibit will be open to the public for extended hours of operation beginning in March, honoring the 50-year anniversary of the Good Friday Earthquake. A new exhibit “A Moving Experience: A Look Back at the Good Friday Earthquake,” will be unveiled in March with “Communities, Disaster & Change,” a traveling temporary exhibition, scheduled to launch the summer of 2014. (www.valdezmuseum.org)
  • In 2014, the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, which in 1964 created the National Wilderness Preservation System, is being celebrated. Travelers are encouraged to get out and explore the 32 million acres of designated wilderness in Alaska, more than anywhere else in the country. (www.nps.gov/akso/index.cfm)
  • Held once every two years in a different location throughout the circumpolar north, the Arctic Winter Games are coming to Fairbanks, kicking off March 15 and continuing through March 22. The youth sport competition for northern and Arctic athletes includes events such as alpine skiing, badminton, basketball, curling, snowshoe biathlon, dog mushing and ice hockey, as well as Dene games, the traditional games of the Northwest Territories. (www.awg2014.org)
  • Juneau-based Perseverance Theatre will present Summerfest, a six-week festival of three new plays: The Blue Bear, Warriors and Vonya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. Visitors will have the opportunity to experience all three plays that will rotate during the summer season. (www.perseverancetheatre.org)
  • A convention commemorating the Cold War is scheduled for Sept. 4-6 in Anchorage and will feature a reunion for Alaska Nike veterans, a variety of lectures and a site visit to the Nike Site Summit. (www.nikesitesummit.net/about-site-summit.html)
  • Celebration is a biennial Alaska Native cultural festivity featuring colorful processions, dance performances, authentic arts and crafts, workshops and lectures. Attendees can enjoy activities from June 11-14, at several venues in Juneau. (www.sealaskaheritage.org/celebration)
  • In 2015 Anchorage will celebrate its centennial anniversary, with a variety of events between now and 2015 commemorating the state’s largest city. Anchorage began as headquarters for the construction of the Alaska Railroad but has an even longer history dating back to the Dena’ina Athabascans and the voyage of Captain James Cook. (www.anchorage.net/centennial)
  • The historic Westmark Baranof Hotel, located in downtown Juneau, is celebrating 75 years of service. (www.westmarkhotels.com/juneau)
Our mailing address is:
State of Alaska
550 W. 7th Ave.
Suite 1770
Anchorage, AK 99501

Add us to your address book
unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences