Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think the opportunity would present itself for me to visit Alaska. When it did, however, I set out to see as many sea creatures as possible during my stay. After researching the area Seward, Alaska emerged as a great jumping off point to make my dreams a reality.
As you can see on my first day there I was already hobnobbing with an Orca:
The Alaska SeaLife Center sits at the edge of Seward along Resurrection Bay. This public aquarium is also a marine research and wildlife response facility. Here you can view sea lions, seals, octopus and many other species of birds and fish.
This is also the location in which I learned that I am absolutely obsessed with puffins. The center has a fascinating exhibit in which you can view the puffins swimming from the lower level. Next take a walk upstairs and view them frolicking in the water just steps away from you.
The next morning we headed to the boat dock to board the Kenai Fjords tour boat. We had reserved the Northwestern Fjords 9 hour tour. While shorter tours are available if there are time constraints for someone planning a trip, we went with the longer one with the hope that the more we were on the water the more likely we were to see more creatures. We were not disappointed.
The boat was a fairly large vessel. This particular tour came with a small breakfast, lunch and in the afternoon the aroma of freshly baked cookies was enough to call you in if only just for a moment. No one that I observed experienced seasickness on our cruise, but if you are prone to that Dramamine may make for a more pleasant day.
In one section large rocks jut out of the water to provide the perfect home for a congregation of sea lions.
And then…..there was the Orca sighting. The sighting that would have made this trip if nothing else existed on it. Seeing these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat is something I am so grateful to have experienced.
A humpback whale and her calf were doing their best to show this fisherman that his boat wasn’t that big after all. I don’t know about you , but with a fin that size I would have been a little fearful of navigating a small boat in such close proximity.
As you approach the glacier portion of the tour the temperature starts to rapidly drop. This is when those layers you bring aboard come in very handy.
Can you spot the otter in the photo above? He is a little hidden, but there he is enjoying his ice-cold water.
The glaciers are much larger than I expected. As silly as it may sound they reminded me of giant pieces of bright blue cotton candy attached to a cliff. As pieces broke off into the water with a thundering boom it was evident that they were not as light as cotton candy.
As our trip to Seward came to an end we were left with beautiful memories and a desire to return as quickly as possible.