This article is an excerpt from our new Steppes Traveller magazine – please get in touch with us to receive your free copy.

In August 2019, 19 Steppes Travel clients joined Chris Packham on a small-ship cruise exploring south-east Alaska’s fjords and glaciers in search of the 49th state’s iconic wildlife.

“On this overcrowded planet, where so few landscapes remain in any way intact, it’s common for us humans to yearn for the wilderness. Like every other corner of Earth, Alaska is under pressure. It has quiet corners and huge tracts of magnificent habitat that we will need to look after if they are to be maintained. And that ‘we’ now includes us, that band of Steppes travellers who had our lives enriched in the forest and on the seas of this remarkable place.”

Chris Packham – November 2019

The power of nature is manifested in the sight and sound of a glacier. As the impact of climate change bites harder though, glaciers are receding all over the world. I wonder what this beauty looked like ten, fifteen, fifty or a hundred years ago.


Brown Bear cubs have endless reserves of energy and rarely sit still. This mother bear takes a well-earned break while her offspring create havoc in the background.

Brown Bears

The quintessential Alaskan scene. The big and beautiful backdrop of mountains has the capacity to make even the largest of mammals seem small.

whale fluke in alaska

As the sun sets over the forested slopes of Alaska’s mountains, the different contours and shades of light make for mesmerising views.

Sunset in alaska

A raft of Steller sea lions proves to be fast and agile swimmers while hunting for squid, octopus and herring. They can also be very inquisitive and came very close to our inflatable.


They can be big and bold, but icebergs are, as we now know, very fragile in our warming world. At first light, they have an ethereal, fairytale-like quality.

floating ice in Alaska

It’s what everybody wants to see when visiting Alaska – one of the world’s biggest mammals breaching in open waters. It epitomises the uncompromising nature of Alaska’s wilderness.

Breaching Humpback

After the blues of the icebergs, come the pinks and reds of the sunsets. Alaska’s palette can be subtle one minute and brilliant the next – it’s a landscape photographer’s dream.

Abstract pink sunset in alaska

Our Alaska specialists, Roxy and Sue, have explored the area many times and can create an itinerary that’s packed with unforgettable moments. Prices start from £3,950pp, excluding international flights.

Thanks for reading

Author: Chris Packham