Join us for an extraordinary adventure of a lifetime on our popular cruise of southeast Alaska and the Inside Passage, from Vancouver to Juneau. 

Starting at: $5,295 * Price includes special offer Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Sawyer Glacier  The evocative Misty Fjords  Misty Fjords  Harbor seal lounging on an iceberg. Credit: Larisa Manewal  Pod of Orca whales  Breaching whale   Bear seen along the coastline  The town of Ketchikan  Colorful Creek Street in in Ketchikan. Credit: Mary Dossat  Totems and clan house, Ketchikan  Beaver Clan artist Nathan Jackson, Saxman Native Village. Credit: Sharon Harrison  The town of Sitka. Credit: ©State of Alaska/Mark Kelley  St. Michael's Russian Orthodox Church in Sitka. Credit: ©State of Alaska/Mark Kelley  Totem at Sitka National Historic Park. Credit: Matt Hage/Alaska Tourism Bureau  Bald eagles  Eagle at the Sitka Raptor Center  South Sawyer Glacier  Calving ice at South Sawyer Glacier  Calving glacier  View of Tracy Arm  Waterfall amid the forest, Endicott Arm  View of Juneau from Mt. Roberts  View of Vancouver's harbor

Alaska's Glaciers and the Inside Passage

A Cruise from Vancouver to Juneau

8 days from $5,295

Join us for an extraordinary adventure of a lifetime on our popular cruise of southeast Alaska and the Inside Passage, from Vancouver to Juneau. 

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

I have traveled with various groups but this trip has been better than any I've ever been on. On most tours at least one thing goes wrong, but not with Smithsonian. They're total experts and professionals and I can't think of anything that they could have done better.

- Valerie, M

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

See All Journeys Dispatches ››

Accommodations

* Click on hotel name to visit hotel web-site.

Pike's Waterfront Lodge

Fairbanks, Alaska, United States

Located on the Chena River in Fairbanks, Alaska, Pike's Waterfront Lodge offers a warm, friendly Fairbanks experience to guests. Designed by architectural firm Barney Flint Company, Pike's Waterfront Lodge features accommodations in Alaskan style with log, jade, copper and original Alaskan art.

Guest room features include air conditioning, a direct dial telephone, cable television, radio, hair dryer, bathrobe, wireless Internet access, and tea/coffee making facilities. Hotel facilities include two restaurants, a lounge, gift shop, laundry/dry-cleaning services, elevator, business center, computer facilities, wireless Internet access, and fax service.

Number of nights: 2

Grande Denali Lodge

Denali National Park, Alaska, United States

The Grande Denali Lodge on Sugarloaf Mountain is designed with your comfort and convenience in mind. The interior design highlights the Alaska Native Heritage of its owners while it offers panoramic views of the surrounding Denali wilderness and the Nenana River canyon.

Guest room features include air conditioning, a direct dial telephone, cable television, hair dryer, and tea/coffee making facilities. Hotel facilities and guest services include two restaurants, a lounge, laundry services, elevator, business center, computer facilities, wireless Internet access, fax service, and hotel safe.

Number of nights: 2

Anchorage Marriott Downtown

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Centrally located in downtown Anchorage, this 393-room hotel sits just steps from shopping and dining, the Anchorage Museum, and the Performing Arts Center, and offers views of downtown, the Chugach Mountain Range, and Cook inlet. Hotel amenities include a restaurant, bar, café, fitness center, indoor pool, laundry and dry cleaning services, and complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access. Each air-conditioned guest room features a private bath with hairdryer, TV, coffee maker, and phone.

Number of nights: 1

Westin Bayshore Vancouver

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Located in downtown Vancouver on Coal Harbour, steps away from shopping, dining, entertainment, arts and culture, this deluxe hotel is set again the natural beauty of the 1,000-acre Stanley Park and offers direct access to the city’s world-famous seawall. Floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors in every room reveal stunning views of the harbor, mountains and city skyline.

Guest rooms feature air conditioning, cable television, radio, hair dryer, safe, bath robe, wireless and high-speed Internet access, and tea/coffee making facilities. Hotel facilities and guest services include two restaurants, a lounge, gift shop, elevator, business center, computer facilities, wireless and high-speed Internet access, fax service, hotel safe, concierge services, 24-hour room service, fitness center, spa, sauna, indoor swimming pool, outdoor swimming pool, and Jacuzzi.

Number of nights: 2

Activity Level

Activity Level 3:  Moderate / Active


Expectations: This is an expedition-type cruise that involves excursions by small boats and shore landings by tenders for shore excursions. However, the ship will pull into a pier for embarkation and disembarkation and for some shore excursions. Travelers must be able to negotiate a steep gangway and get in and out of the tenders or small boats (with some assistance). Excursions will be at a moderately active pace during the morning and afternoon. Some days may require early morning departures. Some standing and walking for long periods of time (up to one and a half hours) during outdoor activities. Walking two to three miles will be over sometimes difficult terrain, such as uneven/slippery walking trails.   

Appropriate for: Travelers who are physically fit, lead active lives, are comfortable participating in long days of activities, and expect some physical exertion. 

Tour Extensions

Vancouver Pre-Program Option — 2 Nights, 3 Days

Surrounded by water on three sides and nestled alongside the Coast Mountain Range, Vancouver’s spectacular setting combines a diverse ecosystem with a vibrant cosmopolitan environment rich in art and culture. Visit the historic 19th‑century Gastown District, Stanley Park, Chinatown, and Granville Island. Enjoy a ferry ride to Victoria Island to visit Butchart Gardens and explore Victoria’s downtown and Inner Harbor. Accommodations for two nights are in the deluxe Westin Bayshore —Vancouver.

Fairbanks and Denali Post-Program Option5 Nights, 6 Days

Alaska’s Inside Passage, where the water meets the wild, is only the gateway to terra incognita. From Juneau, fly to Anchorage for one night in “the City of Lights and Flowers.” Travel inland and deep into the pristine wilderness of America’s splendid six‑million-acre Denali National Park, home to alluring Mt. McKinley, North America’s tallest peak, then venture further up the rolling green tundra to the former frontier trading post, Fairbanks, for the perfect conclusion to your northern experience.

Spend two nights in a lodge located near the park’s entrance. Enjoy a discussion about the park’s ecosystem, and journey into the heart of Denali, where a park guide will help you look for Denali’s amazing wildlife––moose, bear, caribou, wolves, Dall sheep, and raptors––in its protected natural habitat. Travel aboard a domed train offering open‑air observation platforms and stunning 360-degree views of the majestic landscape––mountains, gorges, and spruce forests—during the journey from Denali to Fairbanks.

Spend two nights in Fairbanks, where you can learn about daily frontier life a century ago when gold was discovered in nearby creeks. Visit the award-winning galleries of the Museum of the North and view a portion of the incredible Trans‑Alaska pipeline. 

Accommodations are available at the Marriott Downtown Anchorage as well as Pike's Waterfront and Grand Denali Lodges. Fairbanks/Denali Post-Program internal flight from Juneau to Anchorage is an approx. additional $325 per person and subject to change. Please call for more details (2022 pricing still to be determined.) 

Additional Pre- and Post-Program Option details will be provided with your reservation.

Ship

Star Breeze

Sister ship to the Star Pride, the Star Breeze is an intimate cruising at its finest, this Five-Star ship can dock in ports inaccessible to larger vessels and celebrates traditional “sail aways” on deck. Each of the 156 spacious ocean-view suites offers one queen bed (most convertible to two twin beds), a private granite-finished bathroom with shower (most with full bathtub) and luxurious European linens and amenities. These Five-Star suites range from approximately 277 square feet to 575 square feet.

The ship's AmphorA restaurant accommodates all guests at one unassigned, single seating. AmphorA features continental cuisine. The Veranda restaurant serves breakfast and lunch and is transferred into the Candles Gill in the evening, offering an alfresco option for dinner. The ship’s restaurant staff will do their best to accommodate special dietary requests (i.e. vegetarian, low sodium, etc.).

Star Breeze

Sister ship to the Star Pride, the Star Breeze is an intimate cruising at its finest, this Five-Star ship can dock in ports inaccessible to larger vessels and celebrates traditional “sail aways” on deck. Each of the 156 spacious ocean-view suites offers one queen bed (most convertible to two twin beds), a private granite-finished bathroom with shower (most with full bathtub) and luxurious European linens and amenities. These Five-Star suites range from approximately 277 square feet to 575 square feet.

The ship's AmphorA restaurant accommodates all guests at one unassigned, single seating. AmphorA features continental cuisine. The Veranda restaurant serves breakfast and lunch and is transferred into the Candles Gill in the evening, offering an alfresco option for dinner. The ship’s restaurant staff will do their best to accommodate special dietary requests (i.e. vegetarian, low sodium, etc.).

Testimonials

WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

I have traveled with various groups but this trip has been better than any I've ever been on. On most tours at least one thing goes wrong, but not with Smithsonian. They're total experts and professionals and I can't think of anything that they could have done better.

- Valerie, M
Reading List

Highly Recommended

Coming into the Country
By: John McPhee
Coming into the Country is an unforgettable account of Alaska and Alaskans. It is a rich tapestry of vivid characters, observed landscapes, and descriptive narrative, in three principal segments that deal, respectively, with a total wilderness, with urban Alaska, and with life in the remoteness of the bush. Readers of McPhee's earlier books will not be unprepared for his surprising shifts of scene and ordering of events, brilliantly combined into an organic whole. In the course of this volume we are made acquainted with the lore and techniques of placer mining, the habits and legends of the barren-ground grizzly, the outlook of a young Athapaskan chief, and tales of the fortitude of settlers―ordinary people compelled by extraordinary dreams. Coming into the Country unites a vast region of America with one of America's notable literary craftsmen, singularly qualified to do justice to the scale and grandeur of the design.
Guide to Marine Mammals of Alaska: Fourth Edition
By: Kate Wynne
The authoritative book on Alaska marine life, Guide to Marine Mammals of Alaska is a clear and concise look at all twenty-nine of Alaska’s mammal species, including whales, dolphins, seals, walrus, and polar bears. Now in its fourth edition, this award-winning book is fully revised with updated information on range and status of all the species.Meant to be a user-friendly and travel-ready resource, the guide provides an overview of each species with data on body type, size, color, behavior, habitat, and more. Maps detail range and migration patterns while full color photos accompany each entry. A glossary, introduction to mammal types, and naming chart make recognizing the different Alaska mammals easy and accessible.  In addition to the extensive photographs, the book includes Pieter Folkens’s highly accurate illustrations to assist in precise identification.The book itself is a rugged tool that is waterproof and spiral bound, encouraging readers to get out and start spotting fascinating Alaska creatures from land or from sea.
The Nature of Alaska: An Introduction to Familiar Plants, Animals & Outstanding Natural Attractions (Waterford Press Field Guides)
By: James Kavanagh, Waterford Press
America's last frontier is one of the great natural areas on earth. Alaska's rugged mountain ranges, lush forests, muskeg-bogs and open tundra are home to a rich array of wildlife including 105 species of mammals, 325 birds, hundreds of freshwater and saltwater fishes and thousands of trees, shrubs and wildflowers. This beautifully illustrated field guide highlights more than 325 familiar plants and animals and dozens of the state's outstanding natural attractions. It is an indispensable single reference for amateur naturalists, students and tourists alike.
Alaska & Canada's Inside Passage (Cruise Tour Guide)
By: Coastal Cruise Tour Guides
A giant six-foot by 11-3/4" fold-out map opens up to reveal vital details of this magnificent 1,000 mile Inside Passage-- names of glaciers, islands and channels that the cruise ships navigate through. Read about early explorers and ancient Indian cultures. Information on land and sea mammals are colorfully illustrated along with various types of fishing vessels that are likely to be seen. Learn about the exciting cities and ports-of-call along the cruise line route. Each city and port-of-call is covered by descriptive text, photos and a map showing the major points of interest.

Also Recommended

By Mike Miller - Alaska's Southeast: Touring The Inside Passage (Eleventh Edition) (2008-05-28) [Paperback]
By: Mike Miller
Alaska: Saga of a Bold Land
By: Walter R. Borneman
The history of Alaska is filled with stories of new land and new riches -- and ever present are new people with competing views over how the valuable resources should be used: Russians exploiting a fur empire; explorers checking rival advances; prospectors stampeding to the clarion call of "Gold!"; soldiers battling out a decisive chapter in world war; oil wildcatters looking for a different kind of mineral wealth; and always at the core of these disputes is the question of how the land is to be used and by whom.While some want Alaska to remain static, others are in the vanguard of change. Alaska: Saga of a Bold Land shows that there are no easy answers on either side and that Alaska will always be crossing the next frontier.
Looking at Indian Art of the Northwest Coast
By: Hilary Stewart
Bold, inventive and highly graphic, the indigenous art of the Northwest Coast is distinguished by its sophistication and complexity. It is also composed of basically simple elements, which, guided by a rich mythology, create images of striking power. This indispensable and beautifully illustrated book is the first to introduce everyone, from the casual observer to the serious collector of Northwest Coast prints, to the forms, cultural background and structures of this highly imaginative art. The elements of style are introduced; the myths and legends which shape the motifs are interpreted; the stylistic differences between the major cultural groupings are defined and illustrated. Raven, Thunderbird, Killer Whale, Bear: all the traditional forms are here, deftly analyzed by a professional writer and artist who has a deep understanding of this powerful culture.
The Island Within
By: Richard Nelson
Here is Nelson's luminously wise account of his exploration of an unnamed island in the Pacific Northwest. This book revises our own relationship with nature, allowing us to observe it and also to participate in it with reverence and a sense of wonder.
Alaska's History, Revised Edition: The People, Land, and Events of the North Country
By: Ritter, Harry
Travels in Alaska
By: John Muir
“Most people who travel look only at what they are directed to look at. Great is the power of the guidebook maker, however ignorant.”
Alaska: A Novel
By: James A. Michener
In this sweeping epic of the northernmost American frontier, James A. Michener guides us through Alaska’s fierce terrain and history, from the long-forgotten past to the bustling present. As his characters struggle for survival, Michener weaves together the exciting high points of Alaska’s story: its brutal origins; the American acquisition; the gold rush; the tremendous growth and exploitation of the salmon industry; the arduous construction of the Alcan Highway, undertaken to defend the territory during World War II. A spellbinding portrait of a human community fighting to establish its place in the world, Alaska traces a bold and majestic saga of the enduring spirit of a land and its people.   Praise for Alaska   “Few will escape the allure of the land and people [Michener] describes. . . . Alaska takes the reader on a journey through one of the bleakest, richest, most foreboding, and highly inviting territories in our Republic, if not the world. . . . The characters that Michener creates are bigger than life.”—Los Angeles Times Book Review   “Always the master of exhaustive historical research, Michener tracks the settling of Alaska [in] vividly detailed scenes and well-developed characters.”—Boston Herald   “Michener is still, sentence for sentence, writing’s fastest attention grabber.”—The New York Times
Into the Wild
By: Jon Krakauer
In April 1992 a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. His name was Christopher Johnson McCandless. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter.  How McCandless came to die is the unforgettable story of Into the Wild.Immediately after graduating from college in 1991, McCandless had roamed through the West and Southwest on a vision quest like those made by his heroes Jack London and John Muir.  In the Mojave Desert he abandoned his car, stripped it of its license plates, and burned all of his  cash.  He would give himself a new name, Alexander Supertramp, and , unencumbered by money and belongings, he would be free to wallow in the raw, unfiltered experiences that nature presented.  Craving a blank spot on the map, McCandless simply threw the maps away.  Leaving behind his desperate parents and sister, he vanished into the wild.Jon Krakauer constructs a clarifying prism through which he reassembles the disquieting facts of McCandless's short life.  Admitting an interst that borders on obsession, he searches for the clues to the dries and desires that propelled McCandless.  Digging deeply, he takes an inherently compelling mystery and unravels the larger riddles it holds: the profound pull of the American wilderness on our imagination; the allure of high-risk activities to young men of a certain cast of mind; the complex, charged bond between fathers and sons.When McCandless's innocent mistakes turn out to be irreversible and fatal, he becomes the stuff of tabloid headlines and is dismissed for his naiveté, pretensions, and hubris.  He is said  to have had a death wish but wanting to die is a very different thing from being compelled to look over the edge. Krakauer brings McCandless's uncompromising pilgrimage out of the shadows, and the peril, adversity , and renunciation sought by this enigmatic young man are illuminated with a rare understanding--and not an ounce of sentimentality. Mesmerizing, heartbreaking, Into the Wild is a tour de force. The power and luminosity of Jon Krakauer's stoytelling blaze through every page.
Passage to Juneau: A Sea and Its Meanings
By: Jonathan Raban
Passage to Juneau: A Sea and Its Meanings
The Only Kayak: A Journey Into The Heart Of Alaska
By: Heacox, Kim
Alaska: Tales of Adventure from the Last Frontier
By: Spike (editor) Walker
For thousands of years Alaska has called to us. The hardy souls who first answered that call endured bitter temperatures, maddening isolation, and often harrowing adventures for the privilege of living there, and many lost their lives in the process. From the earliest human explorers to Russian fur trappers, from Klondike gold seekers to today's miners and oilmen, from Alaska's native people to the millions of tourists who visit the state every year, people have come to Alaska to marvel at its beauty, rejoice in its riches, and measure themselves against its challenges. The wonder of Alaska, as well as its terrifying dangers, come to life in this anthology, featuring true adventures described by some of the best writers in the world, each hand picked by bestselling writer and Alaska aficionado Spike Walker. Alaska: Tales of Adventure from the Last Frontier will open your eyes and stir your soul as it celebrates the untamed beauty of Alaska.Inside you will find unmatched tales of adventure by the following authors:Spike WalkerJack LondonLarry KaniutRoger A. CarasLew FreedmanDana StabenowGary PaulsenJean AspenAnn Mariah CookJohn MuirWashington IrvingAnd many more...
Murder at Five Finger Light: A Jessie Arnold Mystery
By: Sue Henry
The Jessie Arnold mysteries offer “real thrills set against the wild beauty of Alaska” (Minneapolis Star-Tribune)—and this time, Jessie unscrambles a deadly puzzle along the Alaskan Inside Passage… Two of Jessie’s friends are throwing a party at their new digs—an old lighthouse on the Alaskan Inside Passage. Not a party in the typical sense, but one where guests earn their keep by scraping, painting, and generally restoring Five Finger Light, named after the long, low islands around it. So Jessie decides to leave her partner-in-crime, Alex, alone for a few days and lend a hand. With the company of old friends and a view to die for, Jessie won’t soon forget this weekend—especially when she stumbles across a dead body. Looks like an accident. But even as a frantic Alex learns that someone’s cut the phone lines and wrecked the radio, Jessie realizes there’s a killer loose on the island. Worse yet, the killing spree might not be over—even though the party certainly is....
The Reader's Companion to Alaska
By: Alan Ryan
The Alaskan frontier is revealed at its most inspiring and unforgiving, through the eyes of its awestruck visitors. An enraptured John Muir first glimpses Glacier Bay; Jon Krakauer marvels at the sight of a grizzly’s footprints in the snow; Erma Bombeck comments on the “cruise from hell,” and more. Map.
Alaska Wildlife: A Folding Pocket Guide to Familiar Species (A Pocket Naturalist Guide)
By: James Kavanagh, Waterford Press
The state marine mammal, the bowhead whale, is one of thousands of species of animals inhabiting the diverse ecosystems found throughout the Last Frontier State. This beautifully illustrated guide highlights over 140 familiar and unique species of mammals, birds, amphibians, fishes and seashore creatures and includes an ecoregion map featuring prominent wildlife-viewing areas. Laminated for durability, this lightweight, pocket-sized folding guide is an excellent source of portable information and ideal for field use by visitors and residents alike. Made in the USA.
24x36 World Wall Map by Smithsonian Journeys - Tan Oceans Special Edition (24x36 Laminated)
Travel Insurance

For the convenience of our travelers, Travel Guard provides an on-tour Insurance Plan. On-tour emergency evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. Residents only). It also includes up to $25,000 medical and up to $500 dental expense coverage, and 24-hour worldwide travel and medical assistance. Please click here to view complete coverage details.

Please visit www.TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys or call Travel Guard at 1-800-208-6142 to learn about additional (optional) coverage.