Big Cruise Lines Not Your Style?

Written by Scott Travis

September 15, 2010

photo-1413834932717-29e7d4714192Want to explore Alaska without taking a Big Cruise Ship?

Visiting Alaska means experiencing glaciers, mountains, wildlife, and awe-inspiring beauty. You can definitely see those sights on big cruise ships, but you will be surrounded by other people. People willing to give up the perks of the big ships can get more intimate experiences with nature.


Consider Taking a Small Ship, a Ferry or Trains and Planes

If you want a luxury, small ship experience, you may want to check out Oceania Regatta, or the Seven Seas Navigator for an all-inclusive luxury experience. There’s the un-cruise, for those who don’t want “just another cruise.” They say that they have an experiential cruise vacation, with groups up to 85. Bigger ships are limited by their size to just a few ports and they have a set itinerary. Smaller ships can travel into smaller bays and have more flexible schedules.


But you don’t have to take a cruise at all. Alaskan locals take ferries on the Marine Highway to get around. Independent travelers use the ferries to explore the state and the Inside Passage. These ferry boats travel up and down the Inside Passage year around. They make many more port stops than the cruise ships.  They are significantly less expensive and luxurious than the small cruise ships. I’ve been on the ferries twice. If you don’t get a cabin. you’re sleeping in  bag on the observation deck and eating food from the ice chest packed in the car below. But, the views and small ports are amazing, and you get the insider experience.  If you want a cabin on the ferry call me right away. They go fast and early.


Not a fan of ships at all? Don’t give up on your dream of Alaska. I can help you plan a trip of a lifetime that includes driving and planes only. Or, how about a bike tour from Anchorage to Prince William Sound? Maybe you’d like to fly fish around the state, or visit a bear camp. I’ll get you there.


Find the Frontier

Despite the 1.44 million visitors that Alaska attracts each year, it’s not hard to find a remote river or hike. Most visitors stick to a very small portion of the Southeast coastline. Adventurous types could spend a lifetime exploring the wilderness of the peaks, valleys islands, and waterways. Big cruise ships are great, but Alaska deserves to be traveled more than once, and in a variety of ways.


Pack Your Spirit of Adventure

Planning the ultimate Alaskan adventure takes some preparation. Call me and we can chat about the animals you want to see, the level of comfort you desire, and your time frame. Even if you aren’t willing to book anything yet, give me a call. It’s always fun to speak with a fellow traveler.

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