Expedition cruise line Alaskan Dream Cruises offers active adventures in one of the most raw and intriguing places in the world.
To add to its lineup of awesome itineraries for 2018, the line has announced the addition of a five-night "Alaska's Spring Wilderness & Wildlife Safari" cruise in March and April. The Alaska native-owned, small-ship cruise line is also introducing two special departures of its seven-night "Alaska's Glacier Bay & Island Adventure" to will sail round-trip from Juneau.
Alaskan Dream Cruises touts its motto as "True Alaska with True Alaskans," and the line says it will be sharing one of Southeast Alaska's best-kept secrets this spring on its "Alaska's Spring Wilderness & Wildlife Safari," sailing round-trip out from Sitka. As Pacific herring concentrate in Sitka Sound, humpback whales and eagles congregate around the wonder of the herring migration. Many residents prefer this season over any other time of year, because of crisp mornings, lengthening daylight hours and the flora and fauna springing to life.
With five departures from mid-March through mid-April on the 10-passenger Misty Fjord, the five-night expedition provides cruisers with optimal wildlife viewing and photography opportunities in Sitka Sound. As with all Misty Fjord itineraries, routes are not strictly defined on this expedition. The captain and experienced, onboard naturalist choose the best activities based on each day's outlook and passenger interests.
Highlights always include a chance for wildlife viewing and birdwatching. Expect to see humpback whales, sea otters, Steller sea lions and eagles. Kayak, paddleboard, and hiking excursions also are offer on these expeditions. You can visit rustic mineral pools at Goddard Hot Springs to soak in healing tubs and hike in spectacular forest areas or pay a visit to St. Lazaria Wildlife Refuge, an offshore volcanic island that is home to multiple seabird species. Travelers may be able to witness the spirited and competitive commercial herring fishery.
Departures are scheduled for March 17, March 24, March 31, April 7 and April 14 for this intimate exploration of Sitka Sound.
"We anxiously await the spring season every year. Residents know about the amazing wildlife, including humpback whales, that follow the herring migration during this time," said Alaskan Dream Cruises Senior Vice President Jamey Cagle. "We're thrilled to offer an itinerary that will immerse guests in a unique and exciting time here in Sitka that few Alaska travelers are able to experience."
The two new sailings of the seven-night "Alaska's Glacier Bay & Island Adventure" will sail round-trip from Juneau, scheduled for June 22 and August 24. These departures give cruisers the chance to spend two days in Glacier Bay National Park with the opportunity for small-group hikes in the park. The round-trip departures out of Juneau also allow for more extensive exploration of Alaska's capital city before or after the cruise.
Other highlights include opportunities to explore beautiful Sitka, the only community in Southeast Alaska that faces the open ocean waters of the Gulf of Alaska, as well as exploration of the Tracy Arm-Ford's Terror Wilderness, a place famous naturalist John Muir referred to as "a wild, unfinished Yosemite." This itinerary includes a feast of king crab, prime rib and Alaska salmon at an island lodge.
Alaskan Dream Cruises offers a casual atmosphere on ships with capacities ranging from 10 to 74 passengers. The company was launched in 2011 by the Allen family, members of the Alaska Native Tlingit clan.