Scenery, wildlife, history, culture: enjoy it all on Alaska holidays
They say that everything's bigger in America - and Alaska is the biggest state of all.
Covering more than 663,268 square miles, Alaska is about seven times the size of the United Kingdom. But it's also the least densely populated state, leaving vast stretches of unspoilt nature, full of stunning lakes and mountains, not to mention wildlife like moose, grizzly bears, bald eagles, polar bears, arctic foxes, killer whales and grey whales.
For most visitors to Alaska, one of the best ways to experience the glorious scenery of the state is on Alaskan ocean cruises. From the deck of a ship, you can enjoy panoramic views of majestic cliffs, icebergs and the many small islands that line the coast.
You'll also have plenty of chances to disembark and explore some areas on foot, giving you the opportunity to taste local dishes, learn about the history and indigenous peoples and do a bit of shopping.
Situated within the Tongass National Forest, Ketchikan is one of the southernmost cities in Alaska - and it's likely to surprise you with its temperate weather and evergreen forests.
Water sports like kayaking and canoeing are popular activities, while sports fishing, diving and mountain biking are other options for those who want to get active. Meanwhile, small boat tours will give you the chance to see marine life and the breathtaking fjords.
Ketchikan is also known for its vibrant artistic community. Walking around town, you will surely spot a number of galleries and shops that showcase the works of residents - and a selection of these could be great souvenirs to remember your Alaska holiday.
The Alaskan state capital, Juneau is named after a gold prospector who arrived in the area in the 1880s.
A beautiful city, located on the Gastineau Channel, it is known for its small-town feel and stunning natural surroundings.
From exploring Mendenhall Glacier, through to whale watching, tours of goldmines and checking out the spectacular views offered by the Mountain Tramway, there's plenty to keep you busy.
Plus, there's the friendly city, which offers plenty for art lovers and those interested in indigenous crafts, as well as historic pubs, amazing restaurants and microbreweries to keep you wined and dined throughout your stay.
Often called the Gateway to the Klondike, Skagway has been inhabited since prehistoric times, but first rose to prominence during the gold rush during the late 1880s, as it offered one of the most easily accessible routes to the gold that was thought to be found in Canada's Yukon Territory. It's also one of the main settings in Jack London's book The Call of the Wild.
There are a number of ways to explore the area around Skagway, from walking tours and horse riding excursions, through to helicopter rides, rafting tours, cycling or even by dogsled.
For a bit of history, head off to the Skagway Museum and archives or explore the Gold Rush Cemetery and the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park. Alternatively, enjoy some time in the great outdoors with a hike to Lower Dewey Lake or to Yakutania Point for a mesmerising view.
The Rocky Mountains, Canada and the Pacific Northwest
If you'd like to see more on Alaskan holidays in 2012, most of the tours offered by Titan include other parts of North America too.
For example, before your Alaska cruise, you could take some time to see parts of British Columbia and Alberta. Lake Louise in Banff National Park is one popular destination. Or you could step aboard the Rocky Mountaineer train for the journey from Jasper to Vancouver.
Alternatively, some Alaskan adventures begin in Seattle, giving you the opportunity to see a few of the USA's iconic sites like the Space Needle and Pike Place Market, or enjoy your favourite hot drink at the original Starbucks coffee shop.