Exploring Alaska’s Coastal Wilderness Cruise (WAITLIST ONLY)

Embark on an awe-inspiring 8-day expedition into the remarkable wonders of Southeast Alaska. Aboard the 100-guest National Geographic Quest, sail through fast-moving channels where whales return to feed year after year and bears, sea lions and eagles can be spotted in their natural habitat. Spend a full day in Glacier Bay National Park and gain exclusive access to NPCA staff experts who will provide an inside look at NPCA’s on-going work in Alaska.

Download Detailed Trip Brochure (1 MB pdf)

Available Dates:

August 25 – September 1, 2024

8 days/7 nights


Why Travel with NPCA?

Our goal is to offer premium educational travel itineraries in the places we know best: America’s national parks.

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Itinerary Highlights

  • Spend an entire day amid the coves, fjords, tidewater glaciers and majestic mountains of Glacier Bay National Park
  • Witness waterfalls cascading from glacially carved walls
  • Look for brown bears, mountain goats, orca and humpback whales, puffins and Stellar sea lions, alongside an expert naturalist
  • Hike in the wild remote areas of Tongass National Forest
  • Witness the soaring Dawes or South Sawyer Glacier up close for an unbeatable view among sculpted icebergs
  • Search for marine mammals in the nutrient-rich waters of Icy Strait


Day 1: August 25 – Arrivals to Sitka: Arrive by 2:00 PM in Sitka, Alaska, situated on the western coast of Baranof Island and overlooking the Pacific Ocean. A member of Lindblad Expeditions team will transfer guests to the National Geographic Quest in time for cocktails and an introduction of the vessel staff and crew.
Please note: NPCA encourages you to arrive a day early for an optional group trip to *Sitka National Historical Park** on the morning of August 25th.  *(D)

Day 2: August 26 – Southeast Alaska’s Islands, Bays and Fjords: Today, nature is our guide as we set forth to view wildlife with the flexibility to take advantage of weather conditions. We may stop at an isolated beach to beachcomb, explore tide pools and hike stunning forest trails. We’ll keep an eye out for old bear tracks worn into the soil as you move from forest to meadow. Sightings of bald eagles are common. If conditions permit, we will do some kayaking, always watching for marine and terrestrial life.
(B, L, D)

Day 3: August 27 – Icy Strait and the Inian Islands: We’ll explore among the Inian Islands, where an abundance of Steller sea lions and sea otters reside and search for marine mammals in the nutrient-rich waters of Icy Strait. Then we’ll choose the perfect spot around Chichagof Island to hike where sightings of bald eagles are common.
(B, L, D)

Day 4: August 28 – Glacier Bay National Park: Today, we’ll spend the entire day amid the coves, fjords, tidewater glaciers and majestic mountains of Glacier Bay National Park. We’ll witness glaciers that end abruptly at the water’s edge and observe them calving, when tons of ice separate and crash into the water accompanied by a thunderous sound. Mountain goats scaling the peaks as well as harbor seals, Steller sea lions and puffins are some of the creatures we may observe. A visit to Tidal Inlet may also bring the sight of brown bears lumbering up the hillside. (B, L, D)

Day 5: August 29 – Frederick Sound and Chatham Strait: These waters are prime areas for both orca and humpback whales. With luck, guests may observe their fascinating behavior — breaching, tail-slapping and variations on feeding — as we fill the deck and listen to the play-by-play from our expert naturalists. We will explore spectacular bays and inlets, following bear trails and salmon streams. Once ashore, we have the opportunity to walk along a quiet forest trail. The still waters are excellent for kayaking, offering another option for up-close exploration. (B, L, D)

Day 6: August 30 – Petersburg: We visit the small Alaska fishing town of Petersburg on Mitkof Island today, which still retains much of its Norwegian heritage. We’ll explore a unique Southeast Alaska ecosystem, the muskeg, with stunted trees and carnivorous plants. There is an opportunity to stretch our legs with an optional bike ride around town. For dinner, we will enjoy a crab feast. (B, L, D)

Day 7: August 31 – Tracy Arm-Fords Terror Wilderness: We’ll start the day on a voyage into Tracy or Endicott Arm, both spectacular fjords, with waterfalls cascading from glacially carved walls. We’ll see the soaring Dawes or South Sawyer Glacier up close and take a cruise in a Zodiac for an unbeatable view among sculpted icebergs. Keep an eye out for harbor seals, harbor porpoises and arctic terns. (B, L, D)

Day 8: September 1 – Juneau, Alaska / Disembark Trip: After breakfast we disembark in Juneau. Take time to visit the local shops before exploring the newly constructed Alaska State Museum, with its sprawling collection of natural history and cultural artifacts. Transfer to the airport for connecting flights home.

Please note: Accommodations and activities are subject to change at any time due to unforeseen circumstances or circumstances beyond NPCA’s control.

MORE INFORMATION: For full details on this trip, including inclusions, exclusions, accommodations, terms and safety protocols, please download the detailed trip brochure.

Download Detailed Trip Brochure (1 MB pdf)

NPCA TRAVEL ELIGIBILITY: NPCA is the only independent, nonpartisan organization dedicated to advocacy on behalf of the National Park System. Over 70% of our funding comes from donations from individuals like you. NPCA trips are an exclusive NPCA member benefit. One traveler per group must be an NPCA member to participate in an NPCA trip. An annual membership starts at $15 per person. Please make dues payable to NPCA by check or credit card at npca.org.

NPCA TRAVELER RESPONSIBILTY Participants in NPCA’s Educational Travel Program assume responsibility for selecting a trip aligned with their ability, fitness, and overall health. Before joining a trip, all participants must complete and submit NPCA’s waiver of liability, personal information form, flight form, and acknowledge the tour operator’s Terms and Conditions. Additionally, participants are expected to familiarize themselves with all pre-departure materials, ensuring appropriate clothing and gear for the journey.

By enrolling in NPCA’s Educational Travel Program, participants commit to upholding NPCA’s Core Values of Commitment, Inclusion, Integrity, and Respect, as well as embracing NPCA’s Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) principles. This commitment extends to participants conducting themselves safely and appropriately, following instructions from the tour operator or NPCA staff, and adhering to the laws of the destination(s) visited on the NPCA trip. Participants understand that their dedication to these values is essential for creating a safe, positive, respectful, and memorable experience for all involved.

MAKING RESERVATIONS: To secure your space on this NPCA trip, please click the “Register Now” button at the top of this page or contact NPCA’s National Parks Experiences Program at 1-800-628-7275 or travel@npca.org.

TRAVEL PROTECTION: We strongly recommend purchasing important optional travel insurance that will cover you for a variety of travel-related contingencies, such as trip cancellation, interruption, and/or delay; baggage loss, theft, damage or delay; accident and/or sickness medical expenses; accidental death; as well as evacuation/repatriation coverage. Please note that a Pre-Existing Condition waiver is available if you purchase the policy within 21 days of making your initial trip payment. Also consider the optional “Cancel for any Reason” protection. All questions regarding the plan’s coverage should be directed to Travel Insurance Select through USI Affinity at 1-800-937-1387 or by visiting their website.

Have questions? Please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Check out NPCA’s full tour lineup at www.npca.org/trips

  • Cost:
    From $7,011 per person
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