Special OfferBook by August 9 to SAVE $1,500 per person!Overview
Be among the few travelers to explore seldom-visited ports along the water and land bridges that connect East and West (from Japan to Alaska), which served as a highway for human culture. Experience the natural wonders of Japan’s stunning and serene Northern Islands and marvel at the dramatic beauty of Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula, a World Heritage site. Call on the rugged yet inviting Aleutian Islands as you cross the Bering Sea, then enter the magnificent wilderness expanse of Alaska, making stops at the fascinating towns of Kodiak and Homer. Geologist Patrick Abbott and other guest speakers provide engaging discussions on the region’s natural history and cultural history. Enjoy the flexibility of our cruise program, which allows you to choose shore excursions of your preference through your shipboard credits. Optional extensions to Kyoto and Denali National Park/Fairbanks are also offered.
This unforgettable, 15-day transpacific voyage aboard the Six-Star, all-Suite M.V. Silver Shadow
provides an unmatched small ship experience that offers many complimentary features aboard ship
: all shipboard gratuities and port taxes, personal butler service, beverages in your suite and throughout the cruise, and even complimentary fitness classes.
Please note that there are Air Add-Ons from 53 major cities (see the Tour Cost page for details).Don't forget to check out our photo slide show to glimpse the excitement of this special program!
View photos by clicking "Next Photo" at top of page!Itinerary
Days 1 & 2 - U.S., Tokyo, Japan
Depart the U.S. for Tokyo. Upon arrival embark the M.V. Silver Shadow
. (D)Day 3 - Tokyo
Experience Japan’s capital and the world’s most populous metropolis. Beneath the thriving business districts, the latest architectural achievements and the wellspring of Japanese pop culture, you can find the cultural core of this historic city. Intricate Shinto shrines and neighborhood public baths still reveal time-honored old traditions. (B,L,D,R)Day 4 - Cruising the Pacific Ocean
During a day at sea, enjoy presentations by your study leader and guest speakers as well as the many luxury facilities aboard ship. (B,L,D)Day 5 - Hakodate, Hokkaido
Located on the southern shores of the largely untamed isle of Hokkaido, Hakodate opened as an international port in 1859. The city retains the ambiance of a bygone era with old-fashioned streetcars running leisurely through the historic Motomachi district, which is laden with turn-of-the-century American and European architecture. The city’s highlights include a Russian Orthodox church built in the Byzantine style; an antebellum mansion which houses the city’s public hall; and Asa Ichi, a fish and vegetable market brimming with local Japanese color. (B,L,D)Day 6 - Kushiro
The beautiful coastal port of Kushiro, situated in the southeastern part of Hokkaido and facing the Pacific Ocean, is known as “the town of mist,” and has been a base for deep-sea fishing for over a century. The thriving Washo fish market sells fresh seafood such as saury, hairy crab, salmon, shishamo (a kind of smelt) and scallops. Nearby, the largest wetland in Japan, Kushiro Marshland, is renowned for its unique ecosystem, which can be observed directly from a wooden walkway. It is home to about 600 plant species, and offers habitats for migratory birds and the enormous Japanese crane, a traditional symbol of both longevity and Japan. (B,L,D)Days 7 & 8 - Cruising the Pacific Ocean
Enjoy onboard lectures, live entertainment, Relais & Châteaux cuisine, complimentary fitness classes, onboard spa treatments, and stargazing. Or, simply wrap up in a blanket and relax on deck with a complimentary beverage of your choice while contemplating a panoramic view of the Pacific horizon. (B,L,D each day)Day 9 - Petropavlovsk-Kamchatka, Russia
Petropavlovsk, at the edge of Avacha Bay, is one of Russia’s oldest towns in the Far East and has one of the world’s most beautiful settings. The city is a commercial center of Kamchatka. In 1740, the explorer Vitus Bering reached Avacha Bay, and subsequently from here embarked on his voyage which led to the discovery of the Aleutian Islands leading to the coast of America. The region has since played a strategic role in the defense of Russian territory and was closed off to the world, resulting in the preservation of its vast and unique wilderness. Kamchatka is inhabited by the largest brown bear population in the world; the world’s largest eagle, the Steller’s sea eagle; and almost one third of the world’s Pacific salmon population. (B,L,D)Days 10 & 11 - Transpacific Crossing, International Date Line
On deck, look for marine wildlife such as Orca and Humpback whales, harbor seals, sea otters and one of the most dense populations of sea birds on Earth between port calls in Russia’s Petropavlovsk and Dutch Harbor, Alaska. Enjoy onboard lectures, live entertainment, Relais & Châteaux cuisine, complimentary fitness classes, onboard spa treatments and stargazing. (B,L,D each day)Day 12 - Dutch Harbor, Alaska, U.S.
Dutch Harbor has a diverse history where culture and commerce have coexisted since the mid-1700s. At the confluence of the North Pacific and the Bering Sea, it is the only natural deep water port in the Aleutian Islands, and vessels from around the world call here each year. Since 1988, the town has led our nation in both volume and value of seafood caught with more than 800 million pounds of seafood processed annually for export. Beyond the fisheries at the center of town, explore the terrain and wildlife of the island in the path of the indigenous Aleut people who have continuously inhabited these islands for approximately 9,000 years. (B,L,D)Day 13 - Cruising The Aleutian Archipelago
Enjoy being on deck to watch for marine life and the many species of birds in the area, as well as talking with experts informally. (B,L,D)Day 14 - Kodiak
Twenty thousand years ago, most of the Kodiak Archipelago was covered by glaciers that left scenic peaks, fjord-like bays and wide U-shaped valleys that became ideally suited for abundant land and marine life. The Alutiiq, Kodiak’s first inhabitants, were drawn to the region by its plentiful fish and sea mammals. Russian trappers were led to Kodiak in pursuit of sea otter pelts and established the first capital of Russian Alaska here in 1784. When the United States purchased Alaska from Russia in 1867, the economy shifted to whaling and salmon fishing. Today, the town is home to over 700 fishing vessels. Explore the island’s historic landmarks highlighting the Native American and Russian legacy and experience a wildness that is matched in few places on Earth. (B,L,D)Day 15 - Homer
Charming, colorful Homer, at the end of Sterling Highway, sits amid towering snow-capped mountains and blue glaciers on beautiful Kachemak Bay, a sheltered arm of lower Cook Inlet. People have inhabited the area for thousands of years, drawn to its diverse land, mild climate and abundant marine life. In the 1800s, homesteaders and coal miners comprised the area’s population until commercial fishing became the mainstay of the town. Today, Homer is known as the ‘Halibut Fishing Capital of the World,’ and is home to an eclectic mix of artists, fisherman, and outdoor enthusiasts drawn by the slow pace of life and wilderness setting by the clear-water bay. (B,L,D)Day 16 - Anchorage, Disembark M.V. Silver Shadow, Return To Home City
Anchorage, Alaska’s largest city was founded in 1914 as a work camp for the Alaska Railroad and boomed due to oil from Prudhoe Bay. With all the comforts of a U.S. city, the town maintains its frontier facade evident in the world’s largest floatplane sea base, Lake Hood. The Alaska Native Heritage Center features Alaska’s native culture, language, heritage and traditions. (B)