Shop Ashore—Alaska Edition

Find the perfect memento from the Last Frontier.

Alaska Shop Ashore Feature

What better way to commemorate your Alaskan voyage than with an authentic local treasure? In the ports of call you’ll be visiting, you’ll find a bevy of stores that offer unparalleled selections. And you’ll find many of those shops just minutes—or mere steps, in some cases—from where your cruise ship docks.

Alaska Native arts and locally made crafts are among the most coveted purchases. In the ports of call, look for paintings, photographs, prints, pottery, wood carvings, and other distinctive items created by local artists—many of whom found inspiration in the stunning natural scenery that’s never far from view.

While art galleries abound throughout the state, they are particularly plentiful in Ketchikan, once named one of the country’s top 100 small arts communities. Stop by Scanlon Art Gallery, Arctic Spirit Gallery, and Julie’s Dock Street Gallery to view some favorite local collections.

For Native crafts, Icy Strait Point is a good bet. Some 95 percent of the workers are from the nearby village Hoonah, home to Alaska’s largest Tlingit population. Every store in the historic cannery is Alaskan owned or locally operated, and many specialize in authentic made-in-Alaska items—moccasins, totem poles, masks, drums, baskets, ivory carvings, jewelry made from local gold nuggets, and other regional products. Head to the craft market to meet local artisans and watch as they perfect their wares.

If you want to take a taste of Alaska home with you, you’re in luck. Salmon products are popular finds in all the ports of call. In Ketchikan, known as the salmon capital of the world, Salmon Etc. offers the fish almost any way you can imagine—smoked, filleted, frozen, canned, flavored, and more. You can even get fresh salmon packed on ice and shipped to your home. Many local stores offer similar pack-and-ship services, so just ask.

Of course, fine diamond jewelry and designer watches also make excellent sparkling reminders of your journey to the Last Frontier. If you’re in the market for a luxury purchase, be aware that the stores carry extensive collections from top brand name labels, including exclusive pieces you won’t find back home. Be sure you set aside enough time to browse.

For more information on shopping at the ports of call, see your ship’s Port Shopping Guide.

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