Ketchikan - USA, Alaska

Ketchikan is situated on Revillagigedo Island, part of the Alexander Archipelago in southeastern Alaska, just at the southern border with Canada. Originally a fishing settlement and a supply centre for miners during the gold rush of the 1890s, several canneries were built and a boardwalk town developed. Its Tlingit Indian name, Kach Khanna, means "spread wings of prostrate eagle." Cruise ships dock close to the town centre. Nearby the bawdy houses along rickety Creek Street no longer entertain prospectors and loggers in from the wild, but the memorabilia in Dolly Arthur's house of ill repute will provoke some ribald laughs. And if you've arrived in Ketchikan during the summer salmon spawning season, there's an even better show from the boardwalk outside, where you can watch thousands of pink king salmon, locally known as 'humpies,' crowd their way upstream. The smart ones climb the fish ladders conveniently provided by the U.S. Wildlife Service. Ketchikan's other famous sights are it's totem poles, perhaps the largest and most elaborate colletion of wood carvings in the world. Each pole tells a story. In town visit the Totem heritage Centre which houses a major collection of authentic poles. Out of town at Totem Bight State Park and Saxman Village, you can see striking examples of totem poles (many have names) and watch enactments of clan legends and dances. Other activities in Ketchikan include kayaking on Ketchikan Creek, flightseeing over Misty Fjords National Wilderness, a fly-in fly fishing expedition to a remote trout stream and guided eco-tours to spot the plentiful local wildlife. There are more than 30 cruises calling at this port. Click the month or cruise line logo you are interested in to see details of the cruises.