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Eddystone Rock, a famous rock formation in the Misty Fjords monument
Misty Fjords Boat & Floatplane Tour
Closest available address
50 Main Street Ketchikan, Alaska 99901
Hours vary by tour times.
Best time to visit
The Misty Fjords boat & floatplane tour is a 4 hour combination sea and air excursion that departs by boat and returns by air to Ketchikan, Alaska and costs $350-400. The tour was arranged through Celebrity Cruises but it’s available on most Alaskan cruises that stop at Ketchikan or by direct reservation with a local tour operator. The tour explores Misty Fjords, an island and sea wilderness area made up of numerous mountainous islands, lush temperate rainforest and pristine coastal bays and inlets.
Misty Fjords was created by glaciers and is protected as a national monument and wilderness area. The monument is approximately 2.2 million acres and was established in 1978. It’s located about 40 miles east of Ketchikan. Many of the islands here are thousands of feet tall and have dramatic sheer cliffs, reflecting the carving actions of enormous glaciers. When the glaciers retreated, seawater advanced to fill the valleys.
Given the vastness and grandeur of this wilderness, a tour of the monument seemed like a no brainer. However, with only 8 hours to spend in a place chock-full of shore excursions, it was dicey to allocate half the time to just one activity. The problem with this tour was mainly the boat portion. It was boring, the narration uninformative and the scenery unremarkable from a sea level perspective. There were few animals or impressive natural sites, other than perhaps Eddystone Rock. Also, the plane ride back was essentially just transportation. A better, quicker and cheaper option to see Misty Fjords is simply to take a float plane tour. A plane tour takes about 2 hours and costs about $250. The pilot has more opportunity on this tour to point out interesting features like waterfalls, mountain ranges and to fly over and around island cliffs. The plane also lands briefly in the water to enjoy some solitude. Having done both tours, there is no question that the plane tour provided better value and more lasting memories.
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