Stride climate

Trip Type : Small Ship Cruise
Northern Passages and Glacier Bay tour

Northern Passages and Glacier Bay

4.9 . Excellent
Travel Style: A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level: Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level: 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards. Premium - 4 star
8 days
From: $ 3,595 $ 449 / day
Checking price



  • Visit to Glacier Bay National Park
  • Sail between Juneau and Sitka
  • View Alaska's massive glaciers
  • Areas explored include Icy Strait, Chichagof Island and Peril Strait

Short Description

Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve and remote wilderness exploration highlight this 8-day Northern Passages and Glacier Bay small ship cruise. Sail between Juneau and Sitka, Alaska, with multiple days spent exploring inside Glacier Bay National Park with a National Park Ranger aboard for the duration to provide interpretation on the park’s history, culture, geography, flora and fauna. The park ranger, along with shipboard expedition guides, leads guests on hiking and kayaking expeditions within Glacier Bay. Other areas explored include Icy Strait, Chichagof Island and Peril Strait.

Small ship cruises usually have a max passenger count of 500. The primary purpose of these trips is to spend time off the vessel in local ports (e.g. Mediterranean) or experiencing nature (e.g Galapagos or Antarctica). Cabins can vary from budget to luxury.
Trip Type Small Ship Cruise
See all the highlights and popular spots on a classic tour.
Itinerary Focus Classic Highlights
3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards.
Lodging Level Premium - 4 star
Flights & Transport Only ground transport
Start City Juneau
End City Sitka

Trip Includes

  • All onboard meals
  • Roundtrip transfers and baggage handling between airport/boat
  • Entry fees to national parks/preserves
  • Most from-the-boat adventure activities and equipment
  • Use of hot tub, sauna, fitness equipment, yoga

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Day 1: Embark Juneau, Alaska

Meals: Dinner

Accommodation: Wilderness Explorer, Wilderness Adventurer or Wilderness Discoverer

Upon boarding, the Captain and crew welcome you aboard with smiles and a cocktail. Embark to cruise the scenic channels of the Inside Passage.

Days 2-3: Glacier Bay National Park

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Wilderness Explorer, Wilderness Adventurer or Wilderness Discoverer

One of America’s crown jewel national parks is yours to explore and marvel at for the next two days. At Glacier Bay National Park, a UNESCO Heritage Site and Biosphere Reserve, you’ll pick up the National Park Ranger who will be with you to explore coves and corners of the bay that most visitors miss. The park itself is 3.2 million acres (a little larger than the state of Connecticut), so there is plenty to see. Tidewater glaciers sweep like rivers of ice down massive mountain valleys, terminating before you in the waters of Glacier Bay.

Linger near South Marble Island to spot the many species of rare seabirds that call this area home. Keep your eyes on the water and the island for brightly-colored puffins and black oystercatchers. Stop in Bartlett Cove for a visit to the Park Service's headquarters.

Paddle a kayak and be awed at the face of a massive glacier. Go on a boot-sucking trek through sandbars and rainforest. And ride a skiff along shore for an up-close exploration of Glacier Bay. You'll find sea lions, mountain goats, sea otters, bears, moose, eagles, and spectacular scenic backdrops.

Day 4: Icy Strait

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Wilderness Explorer, Wilderness Adventurer or Wilderness Discoverer

Set your course for arguably the richest whale waters in Southeast Alaska. Join the Captain on the bridge or the Expedition Leader out on deck in search of marine mammals, primarily in the Icy Strait/Pt. Adolphus area. Then, set off for a more intimate land and sea exploration via skiffs for a closer inspection of the remote coastline, with eyes set on the shoreline for possible bear sightings.

Day 5: Chichagof Island & Baranof Island

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Wilderness Explorer, Wilderness Adventurer or Wilderness Discoverer

Today meander along the “waterfall coast” of Chichagof Island. With no binding agenda, marvel at the grand scenery of Alaska as our crew expertly guides you through those “not in the guide book” areas and fjords. This evening might conclude at anchor in a remote shelter, possibly Red Bluff Bay, providing another grand opportunity to lower the kayaks and skiffs, keeping your eyes open for sea otters and bears nearby. Explore the forest and shoreline on an intertidal walk. Enjoy another delectable dinner on board and relax in the hot tub before calling it a day.

Day 6: Captain's Choice

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Wilderness Explorer, Wilderness Adventurer or Wilderness Discoverer

Today's agenda is flexible. Perhaps you'll explore a tidal inlet by kayak, feel the burn of a rain forest hike or maybe you'll have the opportunity to smell the breath of a humpback while skiffing in a secluded cove. The possibilities are endless—your Captain knows best.

Day 7: Peril Strait & Sergius Narrows

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Wilderness Explorer, Wilderness Adventurer or Wilderness Discoverer

Peril Strait runs a total of 50 miles from Chatham Strait to Salisbury Sound. This haven for small ships is scenically highlighted by a very narrow connecting passageway called Sergius Narrows and an opening at Hoonah Sound as it reaches north and then west toward Sitka. Spend the bulk of the day exploring the shoreline for bear and the waters for otters, whales and more. This wildlife-rich waterway separating Chichagof and Baranof Islands is a great place to watch for eagles perched on trees along the shore. The passage narrows to only 300 feet in one spot (24 feet deep). After an adventurous, but “un-perilous” day, toast your voyage with a festive Farewell Dinner and “photo journal” of your trip presented by your Expedition Leaders.

Day 8: Disembark Sitka

Meals: Breakfast

Gather for breakfast this morning as you cruise the final leg of your journey to Russian-influenced Sitka, Alaska, for disembarkation. A transfer will be provided to your hotel or to the Sitka airport for your flight home.


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Price From $ 3,595
Price Per Day: $ 449 per day
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Ship Name

Wilderness Explorer

Ship Stats

  • 76 guests
  • Year Built: 1976
  • Renovated: 2011
  • Length: 186 feet
  • Cruising Speed: 11 knots
  • Flag: United States

Ship Description

The original M/V Wilderness Explorer (under the direction of AdventureSmith founder Todd Smith) pioneered adventure cruising in Southeast Alaska in the 1990s. Refurbished in 2011, the former Spirit of Discovery was relaunched in 2012 as a new-generation Wilderness Explorer offering a level of service and comfort far superior to the original. Affectionately and appropriately call a “floating base camp,” the 76-guest Wilderness Explorer is perfectly designed for remote exploration of wild places.

Cabins Aboard Wilderness Explorer

The 76-guest Wilderness Explorer offers three cabin categories consisting of 20 Trailblazer, 13 Pathfinder and 4 Explorer cabins. Bed configurations include twin or queen. Cabins feature flat-screen televisions with DVD players, iPod docking stations, air conditioning and eco-friendly bath amenities. All cabins aboard the Wilderness Explorer feature a large view windo

Deck & Cabin Plans

Wilderness Explorer Deck Plan

Trailblazer Cabins

Queen or twin beds; private bath with shower; view window. Lounge Deck and Sun Deck cabins are 92 square feet with outside deck entry, and Main Deck cabins are 110 square feet with interior hallway entry. Note that Main Deck Trailblazer cabins (#104-106) have fixed twin beds.

Pathfinder Cabins

Queen or twin beds; private bath with shower; view window; interior hallway entry. 104 square feet.

Explorer Cabins

Fixed queen beds; sitting area; refrigerator; private bath with shower; large picture window; outside deck entry. 126 square feet.

All Deck & Cabin Plans Trip Photos

Flights & Transport

Only ground transport

Group Size:

Standard Group

Cancellation Policy:

A deposit of $750 per person is required to secure a reservation. A Reservation Form, which includes a release of liability, must be completed and signed by all travelers. The balance of the trip price is due 90 days before the departure date. Guests who must cancel their trip for any reason must do so in writing. Cancellations are subject to the following per-person fees, based on number of days prior to departure:

91 days or more - 50% of initial deposit

90 to 61 days - Forfeiture of full deposit

60 to 46 days - 50% of gross fare

45 to 31 days - 75% of gross fare

30 to 0 days - 100% of gross fare

Age Notes

Families & Children

Kids 8 years and older are welcomed aboard all departure dates; exceptions for children 7 years and under may be allowed with special pre-approval. Save $500 per child, ages 8 to 13, with the exception of holiday departures.

Min. Age: 8

Additional Information:

Travel Insurance

Protect your travel investment with insurance. Our partners at Travelex Insurance offer a variety of plans and policies to fit every trip and budget. You must purchase your travel insurance policy within 21 days of booking your trip for it to cover pre-existing medical conditions.

Unused services & personal expenses

Regardless of any other term in this agreement, partial refunds are not available for unused services including but not limited to hotel rooms, meals, air or land transportation, activity days or other sightseeing excursions. You will not be reimbursed for any personal expenses such as airfare, hotel or other travel expenses due to changes in itineraries or cancellations. If a portion of the services of your tour are cancelled by us or our third party supplier because of an event within our control or the control of our third party supplier, and you are not offered a replacement or alternative, we will refund the cost of that portion of the services.

Medical Fitness and Age

Good physical and mental health is essential for the enjoyment of the active outdoor tours arranged by AdventureSmith Explorations. By forwarding the deposit and signed reservation form, the client certifies that he/she does not have any physical or other condition of disability that would create a hazard for him/herself or other clients, trip leaders or company representatives. It is essential that any participant with a medical condition that may be affected by motion on a body of water, vigorous activity, high altitude, headache, cold, other natural phenomenon, or particular foods or allergic reactions, notify AdventureSmith Explorations in writing in advance of travel. AdventureSmith Explorations expressly disclaims any and all liability for medical care or for special dietary requirements. Participants may be required to provide a doctor’s statement of good health.

Travel Documents

The client must obtain and have possession of a valid passport, all visas, permits and certificates, and vaccination certificates, required for the entire tour. The client accepts responsibility for obtaining these documents and any other necessary documents. It is the client’s responsibility to assure that the name on your airline ticket, cruise tickets, or any other travel documents matches your name as printed in your passport (or domestic identification, where applicable) by providing the exact name as it appears on your passport (or domestic identification, where applicable) to AdventureSmith Explorations before tickets are issued.

Once we have received your deposit and all signed Traveler Information Forms, we will send you a comprehensive Adventure Planner dossier. This contains our exclusive AdventureSmith Explorations destination handbook, map, immunization information, visa and permit information, a travel insurance application, packing list, reading list, etc.

You will also receive a final tour packet (which may be provided electronically) including final reminders and local contact information for your destination, and, where applicable, tickets and vouchers, 2-3 weeks prior to the Trip Start Date.

Information or advice given by AdventureSmith Explorations on visas, vaccinations, climate, clothing, baggage, special equipment, etc. is provided as an aid to you but AdventureSmith Explorations does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy or applicability of this information. You are responsible for confirming the applicability and accuracy of all such information necessary for your travel.

Trip ID#:


Trip Excludes

  • Airfare to and from your home city
  • Discretionary gratuities to vessel’s crew, typically 5-10% of fare
  • Port taxes and fees $200 per person for 2015
  • Travel insurance and insurance of any kind
  • Optional excursions and land tours
  • Wine, beer and liquor
  • Massage
  • Port fees and taxes
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Items of a personal nature

Meals Included:

6 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches and 6 Dinners

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