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Paddle with Whales Kayak Adventure

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6 Hours Duration
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From pick-up to drop-off
Beginners Welcome
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No kayaking experience required
Small Group
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Maximum of 6 guests
Whale Watching
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Bald eagles and sea lions also common


An exclusive tour, explore the uninhabited Channel Islands by stunning kayak paddle and private charter boat, quietly taking in the grandeur of the scenery and observing an abundance of wildlife (including whales!) on the Paddle With Whales Kayak Adventure. This is easily one of the best Juneau shore excursions for a true Alaskan eco-adventure. As your knowledgeable guide leads your group on a paddle through the Channel Islands State Marine Park, just a short distance from Juneau, you will experience temperate rainforest and stunning snow-capped peaks, while accompanied by the amazing wildlife that calls this refuge home, including humpback whales, porpoises, orcas, sea lions, harbor seals, and bald eagles soaring overhead. Gliding quietly in a sea kayak with just your small group of six or fewer allows for a remarkable opportunity to experience the wonders of nature up-close in a pristine wilderness environment. To truly experience wild Alaska in a custom, intimate way, the Paddle With Whales Kayak Adventure is among the Juneau shore excursions you surely won’t want to miss.

As with other Juneau shore excursions, your eco-adventure begins with pick-up right at the cruise docks and transportation to the nearby boat harbor. Here you’ll be fitted with kayaking gear and receive safety instructions before boarding a private charter boat for a stunning ride along the Inside Passage out to Channel Islands State Marine Park, with wildlife viewing opportunities beginning right from the start. From here, it’s into the sea kayaks for about 2 hours of paddling in the pristine Marine Park, including time for exploring uninhabited beaches and lush rainforest by foot. After your time in the Kayaks, you will de-gear for your trip back to Juneau, but be sure to keep an eye out for wildlife in the inter-tidal zones! The Paddle With Whales Kayak Adventure is a family-friendly eco-adventure suitable for all guests 8 and older, with no previous kayaking experience required. It’s sure to be an outing you won’t forget! Note: As it’s of the most exclusive Juneau shore excursions, this trip has very limited spaces, so book early to guarantee your spot!


For stunning whale watching opportunities that don’t require a paddle, you might consider the Whale Watching & Mendenhall Glacier Tour. Or, to learn more about why Juneau is perfect for Whale Watching, check out this article on Juneau Whale Watching, part of our Nature & History series.

What's Included

Roundtrip Transportation
Knowledgeable Guides
Hearty Snacks & Bottled Water
Rain Gear (Hooded Jacket, Rubber Boots and Rain Pants)
Double Kayaks, Paddling Gear, and Dry Bags
State Marine Park permits
Guide Gratuities

Frequently Asked Questions

Will the tour still operate if it's raining?
Because much of SE Alaska is a rainforest, these Juneau tours do operate rain or shine. Rain jackets and pants are provided on this trip. If weather conditions are unsafe, the trip will be canceled and we will provide a refund (minus non-refundable fees).
What if our cruise ship's schedule is canceled or delayed?
We will try our best to work with you to reschedule the tour to a later time. If that is not a possibility or your ship doesn't make it into port, then you will receive a refund, less any non-refundable fees.
Are we guaranteed to see whales?
We don't guarantee whale sightings on this tour. Because this is wild Alaska and you will be traveling by kayak, we cannot guarantee sightings.
How many guests are on this tour?
This small-group tour allows for parties of 2-6
What about restroom facilities along the way?
You'll have a chance at the gear base to use the restroom but after that we will be entering the great outdoors. We recommend all guests follow 'Leave No Trace Principles' and should the need arise, we request packing all trash from the trip including toilet paper. If this is of concern for you, we recommend bringing toilet paper and a ziploc bag for easy packing.
Do I need previous kayaking experience?
Nope! This trip is rated as 'Easy' or 'Moderate' and we can accommodate even beginner kayakers. There is a recommended fitness level with the ability to paddle 4 miles and to be seated in a kayak for about 2 hours.

Know Before You Book

Minimum Age: 8 years old • Maximum Weight: 300 lbs
Wildlife in Alaska is unpredictable, so we cannot guarantee whale or wildlife sightings.
Everyone must be in good enough physical condition to paddle for 4 miles and be able to sit in a kayak for up to 2 hours.
Children must be able to swim and paddle in a double kayak with an adult.
This tour involves inherent risks, and for their safety, pregnant guests are not allowed on this tour.
Because of the activities involved, this is not a wheelchair accessible tour.
Clients must disclose information regarding pertinent medical conditions/history, allergies and any type of restriction or limitation that might introduce a higher degree of challenge on this trip.
The kayaks can accommodate a maximum torso (waist-chest) diameter of 52 inches (132cm). Maximum weight limits including gear are 600lbs (1320kg) for double kayaks. People taller than 6’2" (198cm) may have a hard time operating the rudder because the pedals only adjust to a certain maximum distance. However, people as tall as 6’6" have been able to paddle in the kayaks.
A rescue fee of $250 per client will be charged for any rescue based on the client’s inability to complete the tour due to undisclosed medical conditions/limitations or an insufficient level of physical fitness that significantly inhibits the group’s pace. Clients that require a rescue due to an injury incurred on the trek will not be charged rescue fees, nor will those who have disclosed information regarding medical conditions (and have been approved to participate) prior to the trip date.
Cancel up to 14-days before the tour for a refund. No refund is available if canceled within 14-days of the tour. If for any reason your tour is canceled, or if your cruise ship's schedule changes, you will receive a refund. Refunds do not include any non-refundable fees. Contact us by phone or email to request a cancellation.

Quick Facts


6h 00min

Guest Rate

Itinerary • 6h 00min • 5 activities

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Guides will meet you at your cruise pier for transport to the trailhead and launch site.

15 minutes
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Transfer to the warehouse for outfitting, then meet your captain at the boat harbor.

30 minutes
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Board your vessel for a ride out to Channel Island State Marine Park and keep an eye out for whale sightings along the way.

1 hour 30 minutes
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Spend 2 hours kayaking in beautiful Alaskan waters and get up close and personal with the marine life. Stop for a snackon a remote island beach.

2 hours
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Make your way back to the harbor before loading the van for the return trip to the cruise ship docks.

1 hour 30 minutes