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“Great way to see the whales up close and personal” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Alaska Galore Tours

Alaska Galore Tours
8513 Mendenhall Loop Road, Juneau, AK 99801
907-321-5859
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$232*
and up
Ranked #21 of 71 Tours & Activities in Juneau
Certificate of Excellence 2014
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Owner description: Alaska Galore Tours is a locally owned and operated tour business based in Juneau. Owners, Louis Juergens and Jamie Letterman, have over 17 years of combined experience in the tourism industry. We have experience and expertise in all aspects of fishing and whale watching for groups, families, individuals, and corporate needs.
New York City, New York
Top Contributor
235 reviews 235 reviews
102 attraction reviews
Reviews in 97 cities Reviews in 97 cities
88 helpful votes 88 helpful votes
“Great way to see the whales up close and personal”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2013

Were were picked up by David and taken to the boat whose captain was T. The weather was perfect and we saw Dahl porpoises and some humpback whales. After an hour and a half one of the engines broke down. Even though the trip had to be cancelled (we got a full refund) we had the option to return to shore or to change to another boat for another hour on the water. We were efficiently transferred to a different boat with Captain John who made us feel welcome and we saw some humpback whales so close you could smell their fish breath! We had a great morning and enjoyed every minute.

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alaskagaloretours, Guest Relations Manager at Alaska Galore Tours, responded to this review, January 15, 2014
Good afternoon Karen! First off, I would like to apologize again for the inconvenience of the engine troubles you experienced. I understand that that was probably not what you had hope for on your tour, and I want to thank you for being so understanding of this fluke circumstance. We try hard to make sure that these things don't happen, but it sometimes just doesn't work out that way. I'm also delighted to hear that you weren't too put off by the whale breath! Thank you for your review of the trip and on behalf of Alaska Galore, we truly hope you choose to visit Alaska again someday, and that you come see us again! We hope you are staying warm this winter, and greetings from Alaska!

Tawney Letterman
Media Manager
media@alaskagalore.com
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Cordova, Tennessee
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“What a way to spend a whole day!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2013

We did the Whales, Bears, and Glaciers Tour on August 2, 2013. We booked online (not via cruise ship), months before, and all went smoothly. Our guide Jacqueline, a delightful Alaskan college student, met us on the dock; we were the first off the Disney Wonder and she was there already. We waited a few minutes for our shuttle driver who took us to the airport. We boarded a small Cessna to Chicagoff Island, for a 45 minute flight. It was a gorgeous morning, hardly any clouds, bright blue skies. Gorgeous flight! Our pilot even circled when we pointed out some humpbacks. After landing at Hoonah International Airport (a landing strip and single building!) we met our local guide, Johnny, who took us to look for bears. We stopped first at a bridge over a salmon stream. We saw hundreds, if not thousands, of salmon, and a bald eagle, but no bears. He took us to another stream where there were 2 juvenile coastal brown bears. We also saw a deer. We then boarded another Wings over Alaska plane with Jamie, our awesome pilot. She gave us headphones to hear her and took us over 3 glaciers on the way back to Juneau. The views were just beautiful in the perfect weather. She landed in the wind diagonally but made it feel like landing on cotton balls. Wow. We were then shuttled to the boat dock to meet our boat captain. We were supposed to get lunch, but there was a mix up, so sandwiches were apologetically provided after the tour. We were on the boat with 2 other families, about 12 people total. It was a bit crowded but not bad--still better than the large tour boats. The tour went well, we saw humpbacks 3 times, and some Dall's porpoises. We were then shuttled back to the ship, but were given the option of being dropped off in the shopping area of the pier if we wished. It was our favorite day of the entire trip. Many thanks to the several people who all coordinated our day.

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alaskagaloretours, Guest Relations Manager at Alaska Galore Tours, responded to this review, January 15, 2014
Good afternoon Jennifer! Wow, thanks for such a great review. I can't express how much we appreciate it when people truly enjoy their experience with Alaska Galore, you really help validate why we do what we do. I'm happy you found the pickup to be timely, and that you enjoyed your guide, Jacqueline, as well! Your weather sounded fantastic which can sometimes be intermittent, with our temperate climate, so this was great! Also, to read that you got to experience what sounds like quite a bit of wildlife is absolutely wonderful. I want to apologize for the mix up with your lunches, I understand that that can be a irksome, so thank you for your understanding. We work to make sure that these things don't happen but sometimes, they just do. Once again, thank you for your review, and I am absolutely thrilled that we got to be part of your favorite day of the entire trip! I hope you are having a great winter, and we would love to see you back in Alaska one day!

Tawney Letterman
Media Manager
media@alaskagalore.com
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Boca Raton, Fl
1 review
“Incredible Adventure!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2013

Captain John created an unforgettable experience. Not only did we see many humpback whales, he shared his knowledge of the wildlife, terrain and "local legends." The crew was very personable and accommodating. Their excitement was contagious. A real high point in our trip to Alaska. Ann W.

Visited August 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alaskagaloretours, Guest Relations Manager at Alaska Galore Tours, responded to this review, January 17, 2014
Greetings Ann! I am so happy to read that you had a great experience on our tour with Captain John! Thank you for taking the time to review your tour, your feedback is so valuable to us, as is the time we know you took to write about us. We sincerely hope you choose to return to Alaska someday and that you take a tour with us again. We hope you are having a great winter, and greetings from Alaska!

Tawney Letterman
Media Manager
media@alaskagalore.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cary, NC
Top Contributor
93 reviews 93 reviews
57 attraction reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
429 helpful votes 429 helpful votes
“BEST Excursion Ever--Nine Humpbacks Bubble Net Feeding!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2013

We wanted to squeeze in both Dog-sledding/Helicopter Ride to Mendenhall Glacier (which we booked through Princess at the earliest time possible--check my review) and a Whale Watching evening tour into our Juneau port stop and weren't sure if we could find one that squeezed into our schedule. Several whale watching companies we contacted were already completely booked for the entire day (and some didn't take kids anyway) but they all recommended Alaska Galore. We were so happy when Mendy had space on an evening tour that would get us back in time for our cruise ship's departure. She even offered to hold a space for my parents, in case they decided to join us! My parents were hesitant to spend the money at first, declaring that they would be able to see whales from the cruise ship, but the difference in the views is between seeing a tiny dot in the distance and seeing the full detail of the whales from a few hundred yards as their bodies crashed out of the waves over and over again.

We were picked up at port by a comfortable small bus and driven the 30 minute ride to the dock (very close to the Temsco heliport). Use the restroom before you board and visit the vending machine if you are a Coke fan ($1 each). Alaska Galore only provides Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, and water plus NutraGrain cereal bars (strawberry and blueberry) and Famous Amos Chocolate Chip Cookies. Suggestion: Sprite or Sierra Mist would be much appreciated by the kids. And pretzels, chips, crackers, etc. would be much nicer than cereal bars and offering both brands of soda wouldn't cost them any extra. I guess we were expecting a little more variety, but it was fine. We did have to ask for waters as they weren't really offered around much, but they were happily given when requested.

Our boat was stainless steel type body and seats. The captain was very proud that it was new. It had a serious engine, which was key to getting out far enough to catch the whales who were headed out to sea and were pretty far from our dock--we had to go fast to catch them, see them, and make it back in time for our cruise ship departure. Truly catching up to see them was our goal and so the fast engine and our great captain made our trip the very memorable occasion that it was. The seats weren't cushiony at all, but there were windows and doors to the main body if you wanted out of the elements and there were spaces to stand in the open stern and bow for better views. A couple of folks got seriously splashed and took it well, as they'd been warned.

TIP: If your child wouldn't react well to being wet and a bit chilly but will want to demand to stand on the bow or stern, a towel might be a great thing to bring along.

TIP: They provided complimentary self-focusing Bushnell binoculars. Much better than the ones we'd ordered from Amazon for the trip. Plus just seeing the whales and taking pictures takes up most of your attention.

TIP: There is a small bathroom on board--just let the captain know when you need to use it and he'll stop the boat for a minute so you don't get sloshed around!

We were so lucky to get the amazing joy of seeing a pod of 9 humpbacks swimming together, bubble net feeding over and over and over again. Their flukes were beautiful and their enormous majestic bodies were so powerful. Jennifer, our naturalist, had a small model whale and worked to explain these amazing creatures to the kids and the group as a whole. We had 6 in our party and two other families added up to a total of 12 on our 16 person boat. There was plenty of space for all of us. Our captain worked hard to get us the best view, while still following laws and boat etiquette to share views with other boats in the vicinity. There are a number of companies who cooperate with each other and help one another out if an engine goes down or to share busing or to tell sightings of wildlife.

We heard of 3 individuals who each booked weeklong tours with AG this summer, hoping for the views we had. Apparently 2 of the 3 left without them. Our guides were guessing that our whale pod was headed for their winter home in Hawaii and that our group might be the last of the season to get such a great view, though they said no one can predict for sure. It does sound like the sea lions hang out at the buoy every day, playing a cooling off king of the mountain. They were very cute, but the whales were our highlight. I'm so glad that my parents had a great experience since we'd talked them into joining us. My brother's family did a whale watching/salmon bake earlier in the day with Princess and it sounded like they had similar views, despite being in a much larger boat of 50 or so. I think this pod put on a great show for everyone. But my kids don't like salmon and the Alaska Galore tour was a good bit cheaper than the cruise tour, accommodated our dogsledding tour as well, and we did enjoy the small size of the boat.

We would definitely recommend this tour and this company to our friends and would rank it as the #1 highlight of our trip (though possibly tied for first with our Skagway Grizzly Falls Zipline excursion--see my review for that as well). We did arrive back at our cruise ship with time to spare for our 9:30 pm departure and even managed to grab some dinner in the buffet. It was an amazing day and a lifetime memory!

Visited July 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Plains, Missouri
1 review
“Best Excursion of the cruise!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2013

Eduardo, Misty, and Captain T rocked on this tour! I highly recommend this tour and will go on again in the future!

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alaskagaloretours, Guest Relations Manager at Alaska Galore Tours, responded to this review, February 4, 2014
Good afternoon Don! We really appreciate you taking the time to recommend us! We appreciate your business immensely, and we hope you are keeping warm this winter!

Tawney Letterman
Media Manager
media@alaskagalore.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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