Wondering how to spend your time at the Cruise Ship port of Ketchikan Alaska? Read about the top things to do in Ketchikan Alaska:
Day Trips to see Wild Black Bears Feeding on Salmon
For me, seeing salmon jumping up a river is exciting enough by itself. However, a short drive from Ketchikan you can watch black bears plucking the salmon from the water. What’s more, you can watch them eat the salmon afterwards. Definitely a once in a lifetime experience and the top thing to do in Ketchikan. Lastly, don’t worry as there is a safe viewing platform to watch the bears from. Take a wildlife tour which includes a visit to the black bear and salmon viewing point.
Fly Over Misty Fjords National Monument
Do you wish to see something majestic? Fly over the Tongass National Forest and Misty Fjords National Monument. Alternatively, sail through on a boat. As well as the stunning views you may see eagles and bears.
Totem Heritage Center
Have you ever seen authentic totem poles before? Maybe you’ve seen totem poles in Stanley Park before, these are a world famous Vancouver Landmark. However, they are not the original ones. Visit either the Totem Heritage Center or Potlatch Totem Park to see authentic totem poles. Did you know that totem poles are only found in this British Columbia / Alaska region of the world?
The most famous street in Ketchikan is Creek street. In addition, it’s also one of the most unique streets in the world. No cars can visit this street as it is in fact a creek! You must walk along a boardwalk which features bars, souvenir shops and even a historic brothel. Lastly, keep an eye out for salmon jumping up river.
A popular sight on Creek Street is the Salmon Ladder. August / September is the time of year when you’re most likely to see salmon jumping.
Dolly’s House Museum
Dolly was a prostitute who started a brothel called Dolly’s House back in 1919. Today, no longer a brother, Dolly’s House is a museum of what it once was. Visitors can see exactly how this brothel worked back in the day. Dolly lived in the house and you can see many of her original items. Finally, there are a few women dressed up as prostitutes to add to the authenticity of this place.
Married Mans Trail
Back in the day after men had visited brothels they would sneak home back to their wives. For this reason, Married Mans Trail was created. Not so much a beautiful trail but more of an Instagram spot by the street sign.
The most famous bar in Ketchikan is the Arctic Bar and Liquor Store. The Arctic Bar is the oldest bar in Ketchikan dating back to 1937. An interesting fact about the bar is that it’s the only one in the which has been lost at sea and then recovered. During flooding in 1956 the bar was actually swept away with a tenant still inside. The miracle is both the tenant and the bar both survived. Now that’s reason enough to enjoy a pint in this iconic location.
Bald Eagle Statue
A huge Bald Eagle welcomes you to Ketchikan Alaska. Take your photo here as you leave the cruise port.
The iconic Ketchikan street sign reminds me of Reno Nevada. What’s more, nearby are the worlds largest collection of totem poles. Do you want to buy Ketchikan Alaska souvenirs? You’ll find nothing but souvenir shops downtown. OK, maybe a few restaurants too. Enjoy.
How to Travel from Ketchikan to Juneau by Cruise Ship
After visiting Ketchikan I returned to my cruise ship. The next destination is Juneau, Alaska – home of the beautiful Mendenhall glacier. Enjoy the overnight journey whilst enjoying shows and eating at lots of buffets.
I laughed when I read that now the brothel was a museum and you can ‘see how it used to be back in the day’. LOL! I’m sure it is a G rated. 🙂 I’ve not been to Alaska and the whole family wants to visit. This town looks like it needs to be on our itinerary.
Ketchikan is on my list so enjoyed your fun overview of the town. I would definitely stop by that bar and now I am curious so I have to look up the logo. And a great story about how it was lost at sea and recovered. That’s a reason to go there for sure.
I have not heard about Ketchikan. Although looks like the city provides a lot of interesting day trips. I like these kind of places where you have option to do day trips in and around.
Alaska is my dream destination. I haven’t read about Ketchikan yet. Creek street looks beautiful! Those colorful houses, woods nearby,and salmon.. just perfect.
What an interesting story about the Arctic Bar. I can’t imagine what it would be like to be swept out to sea in a building! Crazy! I think I would want to see the bear, but the totem poles would top my list, too. Actually everything you listed sounds pretty amazing.
I would love to visit Alaska someday soon and a cruise sounds like a way to do it! Interesting tidbit about Dolly’s.
So far, oh so very far from my home in Western Australia. Maybe one day.
The arctic bar seems epic … I would love to have a drink here! I would love to visit Alaska someday… it’s so far away from India. I would love to add the bear tour to my initerary.
Cruising in this side of the world looks like such a great experience. You can discover and explore spots like this of which you’d never really hear much of on travel guides to Alaska. It’s interesting how they converted that brothel into a museum – it looks like the place has much history on its own.
Yes Yea Yes to buffets on cruise ships lol. How cool would that have been to be in bar that was swept away by flood. Glad to see both the bar and the patron came out unscathed.
OMG! You never stop, right! sooo jealous! Alaska is like a dream destiantion! I hope you shre more posts about this country!
I would love to go and see the bears catching the salmons. How can I go in this excursion? Is it by land or sea? We are going in the Princess Cruise.
I went with Princess as well. You can book the excursion with Princess on board or organize it when you get to Ketchikan when you arrive which is a little cheaper. I noticed some people had already booked online way before taking the cruise, this must be the cheapest method of booking a tour in Ketchikan.