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Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises

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Valdez, AK, USA
About Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises
Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises has been at home in Valdez and Prince William Sound since 1971. Known then as North Star Marine Charters, Stan and Mary Helen Stephens operated fishing and hunting charters on their first vessel the 26 foot m/v Mary Helen. Seven year later in 1978, the entire family joined the business as Stan, Mary Helen and their three daughters operated their first tour to Columbia Glacier on board the m/v Vince Peede. At this time the company changed it name to Stan Stephens Charters, Inc., and to Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises in 2003. Between 1987 and today Stan, Mary Helen, their daughters and extended family (also know as co-workers) have worked to develop their operations and increased awareness of Valdez and the Sound amongst travelers. During this time the company has operated a variety of tour boats between the three larger communities of Prince William Sound; Valdez, Whittier and Cordova. In addition to operating cruises, Stan Stephens Cruises also operated Growler Island Wilderness camp located just south of Columbia Glacier for 15 years. On Good Friday 1989, life for the residents of Prince William Sound changed when the Exxon Valdez ran aground on Bligh Reef. Stan's vessels were some of the first to carry response observers to the site. Due to the need for spill research, the Stephens's purchased two additional boats. It was the early days of the spill as Stan was observing the response that he dedicated the remainder of his life to working with industry to protect Prince William Sound. Today, the crew at Stan Stephens Cruises lives by Stan's example and works to share the corner of Alaska he worked so hard to protect. Since 1971 the vessels and tours that Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises have operated have changed, but the one thing that has not changed is their commitment to the customer and the company's long term dedication to the Valdez and Prince William Sound.
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Hours Today: 8:00 AM - 9:00 PM
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Tours and Tickets by Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises

Columbia Glacier Cruise from Valdez

Set out from Valdez and sail Alaskan waters on this cruise to Columbia Glacier. Head through the Trans-Alaska Pipeline Terminal and Columbia Bay before arriving at the glacier. Look out for wildlife, such as porpoises, puffins, sea lions, and sea otters, while you enjoy commentary from your tour guide.
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6 hours
from $143.59
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Popular mentions
Greta H wrote a review Jun 7
Genoa, Nevada134 contributions70 helpful votes
This 6 hour cruise out of Valdez to the Columbia Glacier was exceptional. I was not looking forward to 6 hours on a tour boat, but this small ship was beautifully maintained and so comfortable for a long day on the water. The crew, led by Captain Collin, was professional, knowledgeable, and went out of their way to make sure we saw the marine wildlife. Approaching the Columbia glacier was a little like approaching Antarctica with bergies everywhere. It was a great day and well worth the ticket price and scenic drive to Valdez. Hopefully, you will have a beautiful day too!
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Date of experience: June 2021
Response from colleens467, Owner at Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises
Responded 6 days ago
Thanks for traveling with us. We are so glad that yo enjoyed your day and appreciate your review. Enjoy the rest of your travels.
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Shelby M wrote a review May 2021
Shelbyville, Kentucky20 contributions1 helpful vote
Very knowledgeable and kind staff, great tour, got to see humpback whales, bald eagles, sea lions, and the highlight of our trip were beautiful porpoises playing in the boats wake. Even the food exceeded expectations. I will say, we did another boat tour in Seward with another company that we preferred, due to being able to get closer to the glacier and seeing Orca whales. However, I believe that’s solely due to location, this tour was in no way sun-par. If you’re debating on ONE boat tour, personally I’d recommend Seward, if Valdez is your option though, Stan Stephens is truly a great experience. It was in the middle of our trip and a much needed restful but beautiful day. If you’re prone to sea-sickness, this is also a great tour because it’s in a protected area without much wake. We had some vomit on our Seward tour — but it was worth it! Highly recommend this tour.
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Response from colleens467, Manager at Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises
Responded 1 week ago
Thank you for traveling with us. We glad you enjoyed your journey in Prince William Sound. Thank you for the review. We hope the remainder of your Alaska travels went well.
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Circe018 wrote a review May 2021
Liverpool, New York16 contributions1 helpful vote
We originally were supposed to take another day cruise but they had issues with the boat. We found this gem. It was a cold rainy day and this boat was perfect. It had a heated inner cabin with comfortable seats. They had tables for up to 6. Coffee, tea, lemonade was included and used to keep warm when outside. We saw humpback whales, sea lions, harbor seals, otters, bald eagles and dalls porpoises. The captain was knowledgeable about the wildlife and the Colombia glacier. Soup, bagels and oreos were included. Definitely recommened.
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Response from colleens467, Owner at Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises
Responded 1 week ago
Thank you for your kind review. We are happy that you were able to travel with us in Prince William Sound. We hope to see you again in next time you are in Valdez.
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DBDoc wrote a review Apr 2020
Lancaster County, Pennsylvania52 contributions38 helpful votes
Took this while we were RVing in Alaska summer of 2019. We were here over July 4th. Had a great experience.
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Date of experience: July 2019
1 Helpful vote
Griznation wrote a review Nov 2019
Montana28 contributions8 helpful votes
My husband and I had booked the Columbia Glacier cruise, but when arrived at our RV park the day prior to our departure we were told that there was mechanical trouble with the ship and we had been upgraded to the Meares Glacier tour at no cost to us. This was a longer tour with lunch and an afternoon snack. The cruise company picked us up in the morning and the check in was easy. The day was spectacular and the Captain was so informative and very accommodating in course changes, slowing, or stopping to give everyone a great view of wildlife and of course the gorgeous views. She made a short excursion into the bay of the Columbia Glacier which was littered with icebergs of various sizes. I later talked to a man who had gone on the Columbia Glacier tour the previous day and due to the number if icebergs they were unable to even get close enough to see the glacier. Climate change is very real! I would highly recommend this company and this tour.
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Date of experience: August 2019