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Portage Glacier, Girdwood

4.4
#1 of 15 in Nature in Anchorage
Portage Glacier once covered the entire valley. When the glacier retreated, lush greenery and a clear lake were left behind. Head to the Begich, Boggs Visitor Center to learn about the natural and human history of the area. From here you can see the glacial lake and mountains. Reserve a spot on one of the boats that leaves from the visitor center to travel to the glacier's edge. Wear warm clothes, including gloves. Take a look at our Anchorage vacation builder to schedule your visit to Portage Glacier and learn about what else to see and do during your holiday.
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Portage Glacier Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
835 reviews
Google
4.3
TripAdvisor
  • Another designation on our trip (see review of Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center) which I really hoped would be a delight for all involved was the Cruise to Porter Glacier. It’s the only way to see ...  more »
  • It is a short ride or cruising trip to the Glacier and totally worth it. You have to buy the tickets first and then drive 5 minutes to the boat, no reservation required. Even though it was hot and sun...  more »
  • The drive out from Anchorage to Portage Lake takes just over an hour. The lake itself was somewhat bleak when we arrived, with small ice bergs floating near the shore and the water a grey-blue colour ...  more »
Google
  • 2.5 mile hike (one way) in the snow when portage lake is frozen over. Bring snowshoes or skis in the spring during break up season or you will have a rough time.
  • A glacier that requires a day journey to reach, but you won't be disappointed. Portage Glacier is hidden well behind some rock, so if you want to see this glacier you'll need to travel to it. You could take a ferry from the Portage Glacier Cruises and that would be the easiest way to see Portage Glacier. Travel by kayak to the glacier is also possible, but you'll need to bring your own kayak and travel with someone experienced with the weather conditions. Finally you could hike to it from Whittier via Portage Pass Trail.
  • If it happens to get cold enough during the winter, be sure to make the ~2.5 mile (one-way) home across the lake when it freezes over. The glacier is gorgeous up close and certainly something everyone needs to see.
  • Walking across the frozen lake was amazing. Lots of people on bikes, great place to bring your dog as well. Definitely worth the slippery hike. Just make sure not to get too close to the base of the glacier as this area can be dangerous from calving.
  • Great amazing place to go see . Beautiful views of the glacier . You are able to get very close to it from the both . It's a must see do not miss this place . It is offered for about 85 per person through Holland of America . Someone else did it through Groupon .
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