12:00 AM TO 12:00 AM
Rivers, mountains, emerald wilderness and milky blue glacial lakes pass below during the flight to Fairbanks. After meeting your Alaskan Guide and transferring to your comfortable hotel, the rest of the day is yours to rest up or explore downtown Fairbanks’ unique blend of old and new.
(Includes overnight at Fairbanks Hotel)
12:00 AM TO 12:00 AM
day 2 Fairbanks to Denali
Board the Riverboat Discovery for a trip back in time on the Chena River, stopping along the way to learn frontier living skills at an Athabascan Indian village, watch an Alaskan bush pilot use the river as a runway, and visit Iditarod champion Susan Butcher’s kennels. After a scenic drive to Denali National Park, mingle with fellow guests at a Welcome Reception, then get a taste of old-time Alaska at Alaska Cabin Nite Dinner Theater, complete with an all-you-can-eat salmon and barbecue ribs dinner.
(Includes overnight at Denali Lodge, Breakfast, Welcome Reception and Cabin Nite Dinner)
12:00 AM TO 12:00 AM
day 3 Denali National Park
Spend a full seven to eight hours in the park famous for its wildlife, searching for moose, Dall sheep, caribou, grizzlies and wolves. If you have energy to spare, finish the day with an ATV, zip line or horseback adventure on your own.
(Includes overnight at Denali Lodge, Breakfast, Lunch and a Snack)
12:00 AM TO 12:00 AM
day 4 Denali to Talkeetna
Board your deluxe domed train for a scenic ride to the quaint village of Talkeetna at the foot of Denali. Settle into your hotel, then listen to colorful tales of the area’s history before your Farewell Dinner.
(Includes overnight at Talkeetna Hotel, Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner)
12:00 AM TO 12:00 AM
day 5 Talkeetna to Anchorage to Seward
The Seward Highway is one of the most breathtaking routes in Alaska, following along Turnagain Arm and through the Kenai Mountains. Pause in Anchorage for a visit to the Anchorage Museum before finishing the drive to your waitng ship.
(Includes Breakfast and then all meals on board)
TO 6:00 PM
day 5 Seward (Anchorage), Alaska
Your sailing will begin or end in Seward, an Anchorage cruise port about 125 miles from the city. Seward is one of Alaska’s oldest communities with a history that goes back to 1793 when Russian fur trader Alexander Baranof first visited. In town, stop by the Alaska SeaLife Center, a marine research facility, to check out the aquarium and observe sea otters frolicking among other cold-water creatures. The town, sandwiched between the Kenai Mountains and Kenai Fjords National Park, is a delight to visit, but the great outdoors is the big draw. Boat tours, with commentary by National Park Service rangers, visit Resurrection Bay and the Kenai Fjords National Park, with its ice-carved landscape and more than three dozen tidewater glaciers. Or explore by dogsledding, either from a local Iditarod training kennel or farther afield, on top of a glacier (you get there via helicopter).
8:00 AM TO 5:30 PM
day 6 Scenic Cruising College Fjord
Watching a glacier thunderously calve into the sea is one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences that gets your heart pounding. Glacier viewing at College Fjord is dazzling. Members of the Harriman Expedition, who discovered the Fjord, gave the glaciers names of Ivy League and other prominent Eastern universities. You can check out walls of blue ice named Harvard, Yale, Vassar, Williams, and others. The entire fjord is lined with stunning scenery. The area has mostly recovered from the Exxon Valdez oil spill of 1989, and wildlife thrives including bald eagles, sea otters, harbor seals, sea lions, and puffins. You may also spot humpback whales. Expertly guided Windstar Signature Expeditions by kayak and Zodiac give you a thrilling view of the frequently calving Harvard and Yale glaciers.
7:00 AM TO 1:00 PM
Valdez has fewer than 4,000 people living in this port city on Alaska’s south coast which makes it a perfect small ship port. It is surrounded by the Chugach Mountains which are some of the tallest coastal mountains in the world. The tallest point in the range is Mount Marcus Baker at 12,884 feet. With its proximity to the sea, the Chugach Range is one of the snowiest place in the United States and one of the snowiest in the world. From the town there’s easy access to the wilderness via ATVs, flightseeing (some tours land on a glacier so you can walk on the ice) and a variety of other adventures. If you stick around town, visit The Valdez Museum and Historical Archives to learn about the oil industry, gold rush, and the town’s 1964 Good Friday Earthquake. Or check out the impressive collection of Alaska Native objects and mounted animals at The Maxine & Jesse Whitney Museum Collection museum.
12:00 PM TO 12:30 PM
day 9 Scenic Cruising Point Adolphus
Point Adolphus is one of Alaska’s most popular feeding areas for migrating humpback whales – and one of the best whale-watching destinations in the world. Observing the whales here brings the delight of seeing all sorts of behaviors. They breach, spy-hop (their eyes just above the waterline), blow, and slap their tails. You may even see them bubble-net feeding, when they gather to form a circle, blowing bubbles to corral fish. Scientists come here to study the whales. Windstar Signature Expeditions kayak or Zodiac experience gets you close to the action.
2:00 PM TO 9:00 PM
Icy Strait Point (Hoonah)
day 9 Icy Strait Point, (Hoonah) Alaska
Icy Strait Point is an Alaska Native-owned cruise destination on Chichagof Island, close to the small Huna Tlingit city of Hoonah. Surrounded by rainforest and water rich with sea life, it’s a prime destination for both wildlife and native cultural experiences. Icy Straight Point is also home to one of the largest zipline rides in the world (no experience required!). The tourist side of Icy Strait Point centers on the historic Hoonah Packing Company cannery, with a museum, restaurants and shops. Anglers boat off to reel in the big one. Other excursions lead to spotting marine life or wilderness residents such as grizzly bears deep into the Tongass National Forest. Visit Hoonah to learn about subsistence living, view totem poles, and watch enthralling tribal dance performances. The ZipRider is taller than the Empire State Building and more than a mile long. Doing the harnessed vertical drop is a bragworthy thrill with views.
6:00 AM TO 6:00 PM
Tracy Arm / Endicott Arm
day 10 Scenic Cruising Tracy Arm / Endicott Arm, Alaska
A cruise to the Tracy Arm or Endicott Arm fjord brings views of tree-covered wilderness, snow-covered mountains, and, once you enter the fjord, sheer granite cliffs as high as 4,000 feet with cascading waterfalls. The big treat is that each arm has a glacier at its head – where you will experience what’s known as “white thunder” when the glacier sheds ice into the sea. Your Windstar captain will gently guide the ship around dozens of icebergs, some of which may be dotted with seals and their pups, halting in front of the massive Sawyer Glacier and South Sawyer Glacier in Tracy Fjord or the Dawes Glacier in Endicott. A Signature Windstar kayaking or Zodiac experience lets you get as close as is safely possible to the tidewater glaciers.
8:00 AM TO 9:00 PM
Juneau is the only state capital you can’t drive to. While the city is not on an island, it is cut off from the rest of Alaska, and Canada to the east, by impenetrable forest and the enormous Juneau Icefield. Ice is a major attraction, whether you head out to see the Mendenhall Glacier, only a dozen miles from town, fly over glaciers on a floatplane, or land on the ice via helicopter for such experiences as putting on crampons and hiking or dogsledding with a team of huskies. In town, check out the state capitol building or make a beeline to Tracy’s King Crab Shack, where the giant boiled crab legs and crab bisque have gained such fame the restaurant was featured on the TV show “Top Chef.” Food and brewery tours hit local hotspots. For exercise with views take the Mount Roberts Trail (two miles up to the timberline) and then head back down on the harbor-view Goldbelt Tram.
7:00 AM TO 3:00 PM
day 12 Petersburg, Alaska
Surrounded by water, glacier-topped mountains and rainforest, Petersburg is a major fishing center with a delightful small-town vibe and strong Norwegian heritage (the first Norwegians having arrived here in 1898). It’s the kind of quirky place only accessible on a small ship cruise (big ships can’t get into the harbor). Part of downtown is built on docks, pilings and wooden walkways. In Alaska’s “Little Norway,” fishermen rule – tens of millions of pounds of seafood is landed and processed in town, and some of the low-key fishermen you may meet are millionaires. Petersburg is a wonderful place to hike and bike with views. You might spot sea lions hanging out in the harbor, among the nearly 700 fishing boats, with eagles watching from the trees. Excursions explore Frederick Sound and beyond. Visiting nearby LeConte Glacier, the southernmost tidewater glacier in North America, is a thrilling experience.
8:00 AM TO 6:00 PM
Accessible only by small ship, Wrangell is a charming small town and one of the oldest communities in Alaska. Conversion comes easy, whether you are wandering the one main street, admiring the totem poles around town, or walking down to Petroglyph Beach to see the largest collection of ancient primitive rock carvings in Alaska. Pristine wilderness is right next door. Wrangell is at the mouth of the wild, glacier-fed Stikine River, the fastest-flowing navigable river in North America – it runs from British Columbia and empties into a rainforest delta outside of Wrangell. Jet boat tours explore wilderness with thundering waterfalls, glaciers and even hot springs. About 30 miles away, and also accessible by boat, is Anan Wildlife Observatory, one of the best places in Alaska to observe black and brown (grizzly) bears.
7:00 AM TO 1:00 PM
Ketchikan, at the southern tip of Alaska’s Inside Passage, claims status as a capital of salmon fishing. Guests who want to try their hand will find fishing and outdoor dining excursions as well as historic walking tours, zipline expeditions and much more. And reserve time to take a photo of the colorful buildings built on pilings on Creek Street – once the town’s red-light district – located along a creek where salmon swim upstream in spawning season. Ketchikan is a strong center of the Tlingit, Tsimshian and Haida cultures and one of the best places in the world to learn about totem poles. These carved beauties hang out everywhere, in parks, building lobbies, and on the town’s streets. Totem poles are best viewed with an interpreter who can read the stories they tell. Some may surprise you. In nearby Saxman Native Village, young people lead tours of the village’s collection. Ketchikan, at the southern tip of Alaska’s Inside Passage, claims status as a capital of salmon fishing. Guests who want to try their hand will find fishing and outdoor dining excursions as well as historic walking tours, zipline expeditions and much more.
10:23 PM TO 10:24 PM
Canadian Inside Passage
day 15 Scenic Cruising Canadian Inside Passage
Your cruise will explore parts of the Inside Passage, which is not just in Alaska – it runs from Washington state into Canada. The protected Canadian portion of the famous archipelago is between Port Hardy on Vancouver Island and Prince Rupert Sound, near the Alaska border. Your Windstar cruise takes you through the Inside Passage past the rugged, spectacular scenery of coastal British Columbia. Views include towering snow-capped mountains, tall waterfalls, and deep green forest. Your ship maneuvers through a maze of channels, impressively narrow at times. You’ll want to be on deck to take in remote fishing villages and beaches where grizzly bears may linger – keep your binoculars at the ready! Look up to spot eagles and a variety of seabirds, and watch, too, for orca and humpback whales.
day 16 Vancouver, BC, Canada
This gem of a Canadian city is where the Pacific Ocean shares its views with distant snow-covered peaks. The green-space pride of the city is Stanley Park, largest urban park in Canada with 1,000 acres of rose gardens, Native totem poles, and wooded rainforest trails. Ride a bike or walk along the waterfront to the park’s beaches.Time your stay to include dim sum in one of North America’s largest and oldest Chinatowns. While in the historic neighborhood, escape to Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden, with its exquisite architecture, plantings, and koi ponds.Visit the Museum of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia (UBC) campus in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada it is renowned for its displays of world arts and cultures, in particular works by First Nation band governments of the Pacific Northwest. MOA houses 38,000 ethnographic objects as well as 535,000 archaeological objects in its building alone.
*Rates shown are per person, based on double occupancy, reflect all discounts and include non-discountable amounts. Taxes, Fees & Port Expenses are additional.