Summary : This truly is the Ultimate Alaska Adventure cruise and will reveal all the best of what Alaska’s Inside Passage has to offer. Over the course of 15 days you’ll experience the wealth of Alaska wilderness and wildlife traveling deep into the heart of the Inside Passage, the way only a small ship can. Adventure and discovery is around every corner and the pristine, unspoiled beauty will leave you with lasting memories.
Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Snorkeling
$999,999,999 to $0
Welcome aboard! Meet your crew and get acquainted as you set sail into the Tracy Arm Wilderness.
At the end of Tracy Arm, a winding fjord with sheer granite walls, hundreds of cascading waterfalls, and some of the largest floating icebergs in all of Alaska, sits the twin Sawyer Glaciers—North Sawyer and South Sawyer. The fjord is home to brown and black bears, deer, wolves, harbor seals, birds such as arctic terns and pigeon guillemots, and mountain goats, usually spotted high on the cliffs. Later today, move into Frederick Sound—summer feeding ground for the northern hemisphere’s largest concentration of humpback whales. Keep watch for humpbacks, orca, and Steller sea lions.
Choose kayaking and a lush forest trek on a scenic Cascade Creek trail. Or go big on the 5-mile hike to the glacially-fed and rarely visited Patterson Lake for spectacular kayaking. Discover the origin of its “Devil’s Country” nickname during a reading from “The Strangest Story Ever Told,” about the area’s mythical shape-shifting creatures called Kushtaka.
In an area known for glaciers and rich in gold and quartz, take on the otherworldly boot-sucking Baird Glacier until you stand atop the mile-wide glacier. Adventure and natural beauty are sure to please whether you choose kayaking, paddle boarding, skiff riding, or hiking today. An abundance of bright red and green navigation lights guide you along “Christmas Tree Lane” as you cruise the winding Wrangell Narrows this evening.
Home to native culture, wildlife, and wonder—Wrangell is one of the oldest towns in Alaska and the only one ever governed by four nations. Brush up on your Tlingit cultureand view recently carved totem poles at Kiksetti Totem Park. Wrangell offers up many options to make your day.
Wildlife abounds in Yes Bay and the surrounding Tongass National Forest—humpback whales, orca, porpoise, seals, sea lions, brown and black bears, mink, marten, eagles, and otters. Say yes to a kayak paddle up the bay or venture out on a wildlife-seeking hike along one of the area’s scenic trail.
Affectionately called “The Yosemite of the North,” Misty Fjords National Monument represents nearly every ecosystem found in Southeast Alaska. Glacial valleys filled with sea water and steep, sometimes sheer, walls are a haven for ducks, brown and black bear, mountain goats, Sitka deer, mink, moose, river otters, and other wildlife. Glide through Walker Cove by kayak or explore by skiff soaking in the splendor of this largely forgotten corner of the world. This evening join the Captain for a sumptuous dinner and reminisce about the first leg of your Alaskan journey.
Alaska’s southern most city and “salmon capital of the world” also claims fame to having the world’s largest collection of standing totem poles. While others end their adventure and new guests join later in the day, you will spend the day off the ship. Enjoy lunch in town and explore the notorious Creek Street, once a red-light district, then take in a zipline tour or one of the other optional excursions available for purchase. A complimentary laundry service is provided today. Later this afternoon keep watch for eagles as you embark and cruise through the Tongass Narrows out of Ketchikan.
Wake in El Capitan Passage surrounded by breathtaking Tongass National Forest—the largest national forest in the US. Take a “wild” Alaska hike winding through high forest on an old logging trail. Trek up to El Capitan Cave, where 400,000-year-old bones have been found. And if the stars are right (okay maybe it's the tides), you just may get lucky today and snag some organic oysters from a local grower.
Discover living history in Klawock—one of the most authentic Tlingit villages in Alaska. Learn the importance of carving, gaze up at totem poles coloring the town, and hear their stories. Visit the carvers' shed where the art of carving and restoring totems is passed on. Explore the area on foot keeping an eye out for bears, eagles, sea birds, and whales.
It’s Captain’s Choice today as you explore the intricate passages and shores along Chatham Strait’s Kuiu or Baranof Islands. Join your expedition team on (or in!) the water. Conditions permitting, take to the water by kayak, skiff, or snorkel. Snorkeling is optional, but hidden beneath the surface lies a magical array of sea life only seen with a snorkel swim. Take a deep breath and go for it! Today’s discoveries will be within some of the most un-touched wilderness of the Tongass National Forest.
Lush forest, spectacular views, play time, and wildlife – they are all in abundance in Frederick Sound. Keep watch along the coastline for birds, wolves, and black bears. With many secluded coves to choose from, you may slip into the waters of Deep Cove, Patterson or Saginaw Bay, or perhaps another hidden gem to explore by skiff or paddle a kayak. Gear up for snorkeling or guided hikes. This evening, toast another day of amazing adventure with a cold microbrew or cocktail.
There’ll be plenty of wildlife viewing today. The Brothers, a pair of islands at the confluence of Stephen’s Passage and Frederick Sound, are home to some of Alaska’s most abundant wildlife. The area is the summer feeding ground for the largest concentration of humpback whales in the northern hemisphere. Keep watch for frolicking orca, humpbacks, and sea lions. Tonight, anchor in quiet bay and listen for the call of the wild.
Snow covered mountains, glowing blues, and the white thunder of calving ice take your breath away at the face of Dawes Glacier. As you glide through Endicott Arm you’ll likely find a few seals taking respite on the glaciers smaller “bergy bits.” Tides permitting, explore the narrow passage of Ford’s Terror and admire the magnificent domes, hanging valleys, and pristine wilderness that surround it. Join the Captain for a farewell toast during dinner.
Bid adieu to new found friends over breakfast before disembarking the ship. Transfer directly to the Juneau airport or begin your add-on overnight stay or extended land tour.
Due to the nature of the exploration, the itinerary is a guideline and may change in order to maximize wildlife and natural encounters. Variations in itinerary and the order of days may occur.
Kids In Nature Departures: 6/22/2013, 7/20/2013, 8/17/2013. The first week of these trips operate as special family departures, but the second week does not.
Accommodations aboard ship; all meals; intriguing lectures; sightseeing and adventure activities as listed on itinerary; use of ship's sporting equipment and facilities (excludes snorkel gear and wetsuit); on-deck yoga classes; services of the staff both on board and ashore; embarkation transfers and baggage handling between airport/ship; entry fees to national parks/preserves.
Airfare from your home city; snorkeling gear and wetsuits ($35 rental fee); items of a personal nature, such as alcoholic beverages and massages; optional gratuities; select optional excursions as noted; travel insurance; port taxes and fees (2013: $350 per person); fuel surcharge may apply.