The Tlingits, People of the Tides, lived in the Pacific Northwest long before the first explorers arrived. This Ketchikan port tour will take you to Saxman Native Village, where you will learn more about the rich living culture of Southeast Alaska's Native Americans.
After meeting your guide and small group at the cruise pier, you will travel to Saxman Native Village located outside of Ketchikan. The Tlingits welcome guests in the traditional style that defines the culture of Southeast Alaska. During your approximately 45 minutes at the village, your local Tlingit guide will explain the history, culture and ways of their people during a walking tour of the village, which includes a look inside the Beaver Clan House, one of the largest in Alaska.
Your guide will also show you the Saxman Totem Park, one of the largest gatherings of totems in the world. Through translation of their expressive carvings, your guide will help unravel the mysteries of these towering, majestic poles.
A stop will also be made at the Village Carving Center, where craftsmen pass on their skill to eager apprentices. Learn how modern day carvers differ from their ancestors and learn of their current projects around the world.
Free time will be provided for photos or guests wishing to visit the Native Faces store.
During the transfer to / from the village, guests will get glimpses of the small town of Ketchikan and the rainforest that surrounds it. On the return trip, those who wish may be dropped off at the historic Creek Street District.
Please note: Tour does visit inside the Clan House but does not include a dance demonstration.
Reviewer: Todd Howell
Really enjoyed our visit to the Saxman Village and learning about the history of the Tlingit Tribe, visiting the clan house and the woodworking shop where they make the totems. Learned a lot. Was a little confusion after the pick up and had to go back to the dock for a couple that turned out wasn't on our tour. Only complaint. Turned out we only had two in our group in a van...and was able to avoid having to go with the larger throng from the ship. Huge plus...and it was operated and guided by a memember of the tribe...even bigger plus!!! Thumbs up the Village gift shop!
Reviewer: Ann McCarthy
This was a wonderful and educational excursion, We were picked up at the ship without any problem. Our guide was a native and gave us complete history and opened a work shop used by the people working on the totem poles. We also saw dancing by the people. I would do it again.
Reviewer: Clare Strohman
I really liked this excursion which was led by a local Tlingit ( Raven / Beaver clan). We were picked up in two vans and driven a short distance south which was a pleasant scenic ride in itself. We went into a lodge, studied the totems poles in the Saxman Village which is currently inhabited by Tlingit natives, and viewed the making of a totem pole. The guide told of the cultural ways of his people, and donned his clan dress for us. We were also given a pamphlet which told the history and story of each of the totem poles we viewed. I was very impressed with this excursion.
Reviewer: Linda Phillips
Michelle did an excellent job with a fantastic tour! My husband and I were the only ones on the tour so it was truly an individualized tour. She went out of her way to adjust the tour to our time schedule.
Reviewer: Robin Hanks
Our tour was a small intimate group led by a Native woman, Michelle, who took us through her village and told her personal story. We loved the fact that our tour was conducted by the Native Americans and we learned so much more about totem poles, which was our goal. Thank you!