Summary : Shaped by the staggering force of massive glaciers millions of years ago, Alaska’s Inside Passage boasts wildlife-filled fjords and lush island scenery—prime habitat for bald eagles, sea lions, porpoises and whales. Join a group of adventurous like-minded travelers and visit historic fishing villages, legendary Misty Fiord and be welcomed by the Tsimshian—the indigenous people of Metlakatla.
Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Photography, Triple/Quad Cabins
$13,200 to $35,700
Arrive in Seward and transfer to the ship.
Cape St Elias is the southwest end of Kayak Island in the Gulf of Alaska. The lighthouse, located at the southernmost tip, is a National Historic Landmark. It was built in 1916, and has been automated since 1974.
Icy Bay, located on the south eastern edge of the Gulf of Alaska, is a relatively new geographical feature that has formed within the past 100 years. As recently as the early 1900’s, the glacier front reached all the way to the Gulf of Alaska. However, the rapid retreat of the three major glaciers in the area (the Guyot, Yahtse, and Tyndall Glaciers) has resulted in the present-day bay, which is over 30 miles long. The surrounding scenery is stunning, with Mount Elias (at over 18,000 feet) towering high on the horizon. A long, sand spit protrudes into the bay at the entrance and there is beach on either side.
Hubbard Glacier, off the coast of Yakutat, Alaska, is the largest glacier in North America, with a calving front that is more than six miles wide. One of the main sources for Hubbard Glacier originates 76 miles inland. It has been a very active glacier, experiencing two major surges in the past 30 years. This glacier was named after Gardiner Greene Hubbard, a U.S. lawyer, financier, and philanthropist. He was the first president of the National Geographic Society.
Elfin Cove sits snugly on the southern shore of Cross Sound, which leads in eastwards to the Inside Passage. Northwards and across the Sound from the small community lies Glacier Bay National Park and the Fairweather Mountain range. Elfin Cove is a quaint little harbor clustered with attractive timber houses built into the wooded hillsides on stilts. The population swells to about 200 during the summer months, from a rather meager 6 or so during the snowy and isolated winters. Its commercial hub consists of a Post Office, mini-Museum, a General Store, the Coho Bar and numerous sports fishing businesses. In the summer months Rufous-backed Hummingbirds visit feeders scattered around the community.
During the evening the ship will be near Point Adolphus, a well-known area for whale watching. Enjoy an aperitif while you are on the outer decks, looking for humpback whales as well as orcas, or simply enjoying the landscape.
It's hard not to like Sitka, with its eclectic blend of Alaska Native, Russian, and American history and its dramatic and beautiful open-ocean setting. This is one of the best Inside Passage towns to explore on foot, with such sights as St. Michael's Cathedral, Sheldon Jackson Museum, Castle Hill, Sitka National Historical Park, and the Alaska Raptor Center topping the town's must-see list.
A small, unassuming timber and fishing community, Wrangell sits on the northern tip of Wrangell Island, near the mouth of the fast-flowing Stikine River—North America's largest undammed river. The Stikine plays a large role in the life of many Wrangell residents, including those who grew up homesteading on the islands that pepper the area.
Rudyerd Bay is one of the highlights of the Misty Fiords, 40 miles east of Ketchikan, along the Inside Passage. This fjord cuts through steep-sided mountainous terrain and extends far into the mainland. The scenery is stunning, with dramatic thousand-foot waterfalls plunging down rainforest covered cliffs to the water below.
Separating Revillagigedo Island from the Alaskan mainland, the roughly 100 miles long Behm Canal is located within the Tongass National Forest. Already charted in 1793 by George Vancouver, the Behm Canal is the western border of Misty Fiords National Monument. Tongass National Forest extends over 16.9 million acres and is the largest wilderness area in Alaska’s forests and the second largest forest in the nation. It has been described as an almost untouched coastal ecosystem with outstanding geological features, and Misty Fiords National Monument is sometimes called “The Yosemite of the North”.
Since the late 19th century, Metlakatla has been the major settlement of the Metlakatla Indian Community of the federally recognized Annette Islands Reserve, the only remaining reservation in Alaska. It is located on Annette Island, and in 2010 had 1,405 residents. Membership in the community is primarily by lineage and is comprised primarily of Tsimshian people.
Just 40 miles (66 km) south of the Alaskan border, Prince Rupert is the largest community on British Columbia's north coast. Set on Kaien Island at the mouth of the Skeena River and surrounded by deep green fjords and coastal rain forest, Prince Rupert is rich in the culture of the Tsimshian, people who have been in the area for thousands of years. As the western terminus of Canada's second transcontinental railroad and blessed with a deep natural harbor, Prince Rupert was, at the time of its incorporation in 1910, poised to rival Vancouver as a center for trans-Pacific trade. This didn't happen, partly because the main visionary behind the scheme, Grand Trunk Pacific Railroad president Charles Hays, went down with the Titanic on his way back from a financing trip to England. Prince Rupert turned instead to fishing and forestry.
Alert Bay is a small village on Cormorant Island, with approximately 1,300 residents. More than half are First Nations people. The settlement was named in 1860 in honor of the Royal Navy ship HMS Alert, which conducted survey operations in the area. The traditional Kwakwaka’wakw people of Alert Bay have endured a difficult history of devastating foreign diseases and failed government policies of assimilation. Today there is a revival of their traditions. One of the most well-known features in Alert Bay is the 173 foot wooden carved totem pole, claimed by some to be the tallest totem pole in the world.
The 'Harbour City' of Nanaimo is separated by the Strait of Georgia, and linked to Vancouver via the Horseshoe Bay BC Ferries terminal in West Vancouver. As the site of the main ferry terminal, Nanaimo is the gateway to many other destinations both on the northern part of the island, such as Tofino, Comox Valley, Parksville, Campbell River, Port Alberni, and Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park.
Disembark the ship after breakfast.
This itinerary is subject to change. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.
Kayaking will be offered complimentary and will run on a lottery system. Guests cannot pre-book the kayak tours. Participation requires good physical condition and right of participation is reserved. The kayak guides will make the final determination if a guest is fit to participate. Kayaking will be weather dependent. Minimum age 16. Guests should know how to use a rudder on a kayak.
Utilize the ship's new Photo Studio as a hub for the multifaceted enrichment program. With both private and group lessons, guests can learn to master the art of digital photography through the Academy, which provides an array of specialty workshops for both beginners and pros.
Shipboard accommodations; Wi-Fi onboard ship (1x device per guest for Vista-Deluxe Veranda; 2x devices per guest for Medallion-Owner's suites); kayaking (lottery system); parka; backpack; one voyage highlights USB per cabin; most meals onboard ship; butler service; most beverages onboard ship; gratuities onboard ship (except spa). Royal, Grand, and Owner’s Suites: receive laundry service throughout the voyage, 1x dinner for two in La Dame, and two hours of worldwide phone use from your suite. Subject to change without notice.
Airfare; transfers and luggage handling; meals onboard at La Dame Restaurant unless mentioned above as included; some alcoholic premium beverages; travel insurance; government fees and taxes; visa and passport expenses; gifts and items of a personal nature such as laundry (unless mentioned as included) and spa options; fuel surcharge may apply.
Photos: © Creative Services at Silversea Cruises