Anchorage Cruise Port
While the vast Port Anchorage handles most of the goods shipped to Alaska, cruise passengers typically dock at Port Whittier (Anchorage Cruise Port) some 60 miles (96 kilometers) southeast. While some passengers choose to enjoy the activities on offer in Whittier, most opt for shore excursions and transfers that transport them to Anchorage proper.
After docking at Port Whittier (Anchorage Cruise Port), head off on a shore excursion to Anchorage proper and save yourself the hassle of navigating Alaska’s icy roads alone with convenient round-trip transfers. From Anchorage, popular options include flightseeing trips, dogsled tours, and glacier visits, as well as wildlife-watching and city tours.
Multi-day trips are excellent for travelers looking to explore pre-cruise, while visitors docking in Alaska can also stay in Whittier. Use the town as a jumping-off point for kayaking and boat rides in Prince William Sound and hiking in Chugach National Forest.
Things to Know Before You Go
- There are three cruise ports serving anchorage; select cruise lines dock at Port Anchorage, while others drop anchor in Port Seward.
- The drive between Whittier and Anchorage is beautiful—look out for the Turnagain Arm fiord and the Anton Anderson Memorial Tunnel.
- Alaska is cold and blustery year-round, so pack accordingly.
- Whittier is a common departure port; build in time before your cruise to enjoy the region first.
- Port Whittier terminal offers public restrooms and nearby cafés. There’s no free Wi-Fi or wheelchair rental options.
How to Get to Anchorage From the Anchorage Cruise Port
Many cruise ships dock in Port Whitttier, 60 miles (95 kilometers) southeast of Anchorage proper. Rental cars, shuttles, and private transfers are the most convenient and affordable ways to reach Anchorage. There's also a train which runs between Whittier and Anchorage. For passengers docking at Port Anchorage, shuttles, cabs, and shores excursions which depart from port are plentiful.
The official currency is the US dollar, and the state of Alaska has 20 official languages—mostly from the Inuit-Unangan and Na-Dené language groups—including English. There are several ATMs downtown in both Anchorage and Whittier.