Homepage / Tours / Orcas Cove Sea Kayaking

Orcas Cove Sea Kayaking

Orcas Cove Sea Kayaking the 1st Next Tour Image Orcas Cove Sea Kayaking the 2nd Next Tour Image
3 Hour Duration
Description feature image 0
From pick up to drop off
Wildlife Opportunities
Description feature image 1
Eagles, seals, and whales are seen often!
A High-Demand Tour
Description feature image 2
With limited capacity, book early!
Off the Beaten Path
Description feature image 3
Escape the crowds of downtown!


Experience serenity and beauty as you explore secluded coves and islands by boat and kayak on the Orcas Cove Sea Kayaking tour! Cruise along Ketchikan Creek on the way out to Orcas Cove, where you’ll move from boat to sea kayak for a leisurely paddle along the shoreline. At this remote location, you’re away from the cruise ship crowds and in a prime location for viewing wildlife. Commonly spotted here are bald eagles, seals, deer, river otters, whales, and sometimes even black bears! Slow down to enjoy a peaceful paddle, accompanied by the sounds of birds singing in the rainforest and the salty smell of the delicate intertidal ecosystem. One of the top Ketchikan excursions for nature lovers, the Orcas Cove Sea Kayaking adventure puts you up close and personal with the scenic Alaskan wilderness.

The Orcas Cove Sea Kayaking experience is suitable for both beginners and serious paddlers. And, all equipment including weatherproof outerwear and dry bags is provided. Your group of just 6 guests meets a short distance from the cruise docks to board a comfortable catamaran for the 20-minute ride out to Orcas Cove. This is the launching point for your almost two-hour paddle which will be followed by a delicious picnic in this beautiful wilderness setting. This picnic consists of delicious smoked salmon, hummus, crackers, hot drinks, and a complimentary Alaskan beer for those of age. Enjoy this treat aboard a floating Orcas Cove base at the conclusion of the sea kayak adventure! As you savor the peace & tranquility of your Orcas Cove Sea Kayaking adventure, keep an eye out for nearby wildlife. Additionally, your naturalist guide (who has led countless Ketchikan excursions) will share their knowledge of the native environment, making this adventure not only fun but a great educational experience! It’s no wonder why so many guests rate this as one of the best Ketchikan excursions for the whole family.

Note: If you’re looking for another exciting Ketchikan water adventure, check out the Ketchikan Kayak Eco Tour or Zodiac Boat Adventure!

What's Included

Round Trip Transportation
Knowledgeable Guides
Hearty Snacks
Bottled Water
Equipment & Gear - You will be outfitted with a paddle jacket, rain pants, and dry bags.
Guide Gratuities

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need previous experience? Is kayaking safe?
This tour is a great entry-level kayaking tour and perfect for first-timers or those with experience. The kayaks used for this tour are large, 2-person kayaks that are very stable. Alaska's Inside Passage is scattered with nearby islands which provide calmer, bay-like conditions for the paddle (this isn't on the open ocean). First time jitters are common, but the small-group setting means you'll have lots of personal attention from the accompanying guide.
Is there a weight limit for the kayaks?
Over the years, we have seen all shapes and sizes! We do not have a set weight limit as the ability to participate depends on size rather than weight. To fit into our kayaks, you must be able to step into a 52" spray- skirt tube and pull it up to your chest: if your girth is greater than 52", you will not be able to participate safely. If you are not sure whether you will be able to participate, please call us for more information.
Can I bring a camera?
Absolutely! There are dry bags of several different sizes to accommodate cameras, binoculars and any other items you would like to bring on the kayaks with you. Waterproof cameras are great but don't be afraid to bring a good digital SLR camera and put it in one of our dry bags. There are plenty of opportunities for photography and you don't want to miss an amazing shot.
Can Grandma come along too?
You are never too old to paddle a kayak. Our oldest participant to date was age 90 and going strong. We use double kayaks to pair people up to make strong paddling teams. Just be aware that kayaking does require some physical exertion, and for the Orcas Cove trip, we have to "climb" aboard the mother ship. Please call or email us if you have any questions or concerns.
What if it rains? Do the trips get canceled?
Ketchikan is in the heart of a temperate rainforest, and we would never do anything if we stopped for the rain. Please do not let the possibility of rain deter you from booking. Southeast Alaska is at its most beautiful on misty rainy days.
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.
What should I wear and how to prepare for this tour?
You should not need to bring any special clothing or shoes for kayaking. We provide rain jackets and pants for our guests and have poggies to keep your hands warm on cold days. Even in the summer, we wear 2 layers on most days. Please wear 1 or 2 layers under your coat (on chilly days) as it is best to have a layer or 2 under our paddle jacket. Fleece, wool and technical fabrics are ideal, but jeans or sweatpants and a sweatshirt will work just fine. On cold or rainy days, it is a good idea to pack a warm hat, gloves and an extra layer to put on after you kayak. A baseball cap is helpful on both sunny and rainy days. Despite Ketchikan’s reputation for rain, there are many days when sunglasses and sunscreen are needed on the water. Sneakers, sport sandals or rubber boots are the best shoes for kayaking: your feet will not get wet. Hiking boots can be too bulky to fit in the kayak and make it difficult to use the rudders.

Know Before You Book

Minimum Age: 6 years old
In addition to paddling, guests need to be able to climb short sets of stairs; walk to the departure point; climb on and off the transport boats and get into the kayaks, Sea kayaking requires a moderate level of physical activity and is not recommended for guests with back problems or limited upper body strength., The kayaks can accommodate a maximum torso (waist-chest) diameter of 52 inches (132cm).
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


3h 00min

Guest Rate

Itinerary • 3h 00min • 5 activities

point icon

After meeting your guides at Berth 3, you'll head over to the nearby harbor to hop in your boat and take a scenic cruise out to Orcas Cove.

20 minutes
point icon

When you reach Orcas Cove, you'll climb aboard the newly renovated vessel to go over the basics of kayaking, safety, and gear up with paddle jackets, rain pants, kayak skirts, paddles, & dry bags.

15 minutes
point icon

Explore the area in your tandem kayaks, paddling close to shore to look for intertidal wildlife, and taking in the breathtaking views of the small Islands surrounding Ketchikan.

2 hours
point icon

When you climb back on board the ship, there will be a nice variety of hearty snacks, coffee, hot chocolate, & sparkling waters waiting for you.

15 minutes
point icon

Conclude your tour by boating back up to Ketchikan, where you can explore the historic downtown, or head back to your ship. Be sure to keep an eye out for wildlife as your cruise back.

20 minutes