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Tips on Avoiding Ketchikan Tourist Traps

Ketchikan Tourist Traps

The first port in Alaska and a major cruise line destination, Ketchikan is a popular tourist town and day stop for Alaskan Cruisers. Whether just passing through or staying for a while, Ketchikan tourist traps are easy to spot.

Front Street

Front Street is setup mainly during cruise season for tourists. Most of the shops contain overpriced novelty or junk items made somewhere other than Alaska. Sometimes you’ll find local jelly, which is worth the purchase, but it’s better to avoid buying anything in these shops directly facing the water. Walk the side streets instead and head further into town to buy something unique from a local.

Jewelry Stores

When it comes to the big name jewelry stores in Ketchikan, skip them. These stores only head to Alaska during the tourist season. The cruise ships bring in the employees, jewelry, and essentially the entire block of stores each year and they pack up and head home when the season is over. It’s better to bypass these big-name stores and shop at a local jeweler. If you do stop in for a purchase, don’t buy anything without negotiating the price down first.


Avoid The Arctic Bar, which is the closest bar to the cruise dock. The prices here are higher than Kingfisher down the far end of town by the docks. Kingfisher is a local bar with a better atmosphere and decent drink prices.

Adventure Kart Expedition

The Adventure Kart shore expedition is an off-road adventure that is often mistaken for a go-cart ride. The adventure highlights the beautiful Alaskan countryside; however, for anyone looking for a relaxing smooth ride, this isn’t it. During the adventure, you’ll want to wear the rain gear offered and be prepared for a wet and bumpy adventure.

Editor’s note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about Ketchikan Tourist Traps.

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