Alaskan Cuisine

Posted on Monday, October 30, 2017

Alaskan Cuisine

Alaskan Cuisine - what types of food can you expect when traveling to Alaska

  • Try Valdez Moose Stew, Roast Caribou, Dungeness Crab and Shrimp Cakes and a wide range of recipes using oysters, salmon, cod and halibut. Salmon or seafood chowders are mouthwatering!
  • One good Alaskan feast is Wild Salmon grilled on an open fire served with salads and rice which you'll find offered at Salmon Bakes around the state.
  • Berries are very popular for jams, jellies and cooking with meat and fish. Wild Salmonberries, Lingonberries, Blackberries, Rhubarb, High Bush Cranberries and Black and Red Currants are just some of the 50 species of wild fruit that grow here. Try berry cobblers and unique jams.
  • Be sure to try some Alaskan sourdough bread, made famous during the Gold Rush.
  • For the more adventurous try the popular street food - reindeer dogs.  They often are served wrapped in sourdough bread. For the bold you can try Mutuk, which is whale fat and skin frozen together and then eaten raw. Muktuk is not found in many restaurants, but when you do it is usually served hot & pickled.
  • Another unique food in Alaska is Aqutak aka as eskimo ice cream.  This is not ice cream as we know it.  They use back fat of moose, reindeer, seal or caibou along with snow or water and then lots of fresh berries. It is eaten as a dessert, snack or spread. A similar recipe is used with eel to make ell akutaq. 

Alaska certainly offers a wide range of exciting things to see and do. It's unique in the world, an amazing and wild place which should be experienced at least once in a lifetime.

The Alaska Experience

Posted on Thursday, April 14, 2016

Get in touch with the real Alaska with a variety of entertaining and educational experiences on board and ashore. These are just some of the many options geared specifically to Alaskan culture, cuisine and nature to enjoy during your cruise.

Culinary

  • Culinary demonstrations featuring typical Alaskan dishes are featured on most ships. Many have dedicated culinary centres where you can cook side by side with the chefs while big screens display the process close up so the audience doesn't miss a thing.
  • Alaskan dishes are on the menus designed by the cruise line's celebrity chef.
  • Culinary and wine experts give classes and demonstrations on board Seven Seas Navigator's Food and Wine theme cruise: 14 nights, May 26, 2010, San Francisco to Vancouver via Alaska.
  • The Wild Alaska Culinary Extravaganza at Icy Strait Point is an example of the culinary excursions found in many ports. Learn how to prepare and cook local seafood, including salmon, halibut and Dungeness crab then enjoy a feast.

For the Kids

  • Park rangers bring Glacier Bay and the Alaska wilderness to life for kids and teens in Princess Cruises' Junior Ranger and Teen Explorer programs.
  • Kids and teens explore Alaska in a meaningful and enriching way with the Club Mariner Youth Program aboard Seven Seas Navigator.

Lectures and Commentary

  • In Glacier Bay and at Hubbard Glacier, park rangers will come on board to give an informative narration during your visit to the tide water glaciers.
  • Attend lectures and slide shows given by the on board naturalist or historian throughout your cruise.
  • The on board naturalist may also give a commentary at important parts of your voyage. Two popular places are when passing a sea lion colony or traversing the Grenville Channel, the narrowest part of the Inside Passage.

Local Entertainment

  • Check the daily program to see if local entertainers are coming on board. Libby Riddles, the 1985 Iditarod sled dog race champion and first woman ever to win the famous Anchorage to Nome trek, has been visiting the ships of Princess Cruises for the past nine years.
  • Russian dancers from Sitka and gold rush entertainers from Skagway may also entertain you.

Shore Excursions

  • Well informed guides teach you about Alaska on shore excursions from your ship. There's a wide range of excursions which immerse you in the culture and history of Alaska. Check these out at your cruise line web site where you'll find descriptions and details and you can book ahead of sailing.
  • With Holland America Line's Cruise With Purpose you'll have a chance to be a research biologist in the wilds of Alaska. This exclusive wildlife and research tour from Juneau is offered in conjunction with Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory Program and the Marine Conservation Alliance.

Best Time to See Wildlife in Alaska

Posted on Thursday, July 09, 2015

It's not surprising that in the land that has the biggest bears in the world, the largest salmon, the greatest gathering of bald eagles and more than half the world's humpback whale population, you'd find this kind of spectacular wilderness.  View with your own eyes the most dramatic scenery and the most abundant marine life and wildlife in the world on your Alaska cruise or land tour.

When is the best time to see Wildlife in Alaska?

That all depends on what you want to see!

Whales can usually be seen June through September.  You may see Humpback, Beluga, Orcas, Sea Otters, Beavers, Dolphin and Harbour Porpoises.

Salmon spawn late July and August so your chance of seeing bears improves these months. Bald eagles also feed on salmon, so this time is also great for bird watching. Other types of birds include hawks, puffin, ducks and loons. Wildflowers also bloom in late July/August.

Early June there is more wildlife viewing as young are born, and migrating to better feeding areas in the summer. If you are interested in seeing other wildlife such as Moose, Caribou, Dall sheep, Arctic Fox, mountain goats and bears, try to extend your stay to include a few nights in Anchorage or Denali National Park.  

Summer Solstice is June 21st, which is the longest day of the year. Many festivals are held throughout Alaska.

To avoid Alaska mosquitoes, travel in late July or early August. The evenings are normally a bit colder, which ward off the bugs.

Wildlife Viewing in Alaska

Posted on Friday, December 03, 2010

There are many ways to view wildlife in Alaska, but don't expect bears and moose at every turn. It is a matter of timing whether or not you'll be in the right place at the right time.

  • Black bears are frequently seen around Juneau. You might be lucky enough to spot one near Mendenhall glacier where there is a salmon stream or in town on of Mt. Roberts as you go up the tramway. (With the addition of bear proof garbage cans in town, sightings on the downtown streets have been reduced.)
  • Excursions to view bears generally take you to salmon streams where you observe them feeding.
  • Bear and Mountain Goats are often seen on flightseeing tours as they feed and roam in the mountains.
  • When cruising the fjords, you may see brown bear on the meadows around streams.
  • Eagle sightings are frequent even in town where they are attracted to fish canneries. At Sitka there is a Raptor Rehabilitation Centre where you can see eagles, owls, hawks and other birds close up as they recover from injury for their return to the wild.
  • Keep an eye out for Mountain Goats which precariously manoeuvre the steep mountain sides and moose which may suddenly appear at the road side.
  • The area between Juneau and Hoonah (Icy Strait Point) is the best for observing whales, Steller sea lions, Dall porpoise and harbor seals on excursions by catamaran.
  • You may see whales from your cruise ship so be alert as you look out to sea. The onboard naturalist should make an announcement of any sightings.
  • The Kenai Peninsula is one of the best places to see Caribou in the wild.
  • Alaska Rainforest Sanctuary near Ketchikan is a safe way to learn about the forest and its wildlife. See reindeer (domestic Caribou), a salmon hatchery and eagles, bears, seals and shorebirds during spawning season.

10 Exciting Places to Visit in Alaska

Posted on Thursday, November 18, 2010

1.  Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum in Anchorage

2.  Alaska Zoo in Anchorage

3.  Anchorage Museum of History & Art in Anchorage

4.  Elmendorf State Hatchery in Anchorage

5.  H20asis Indoor Waterpark in Anchorage

6.  The Imaginarium in Anchorage

7.  Juneau Trolley Car Company in Juneau

8.  Mount Robert Tramway in Juneau

9.  Pioneer Park in Fairbanks

10.  St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church in Juneau

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