WHY IT RATES: Travelers heading to Alaska in 2021 can choose from several itineraries with Windstar Cruises. —Codie Liermann, Associate Editor
Windstar Cruises announces its 2021 Alaska season today, offering nine different journeys from June through September on four unique itineraries, including a new seven-day option from Vancouver to Juneau and the reverse.
Scenic Alaska will feature coastal wilderness cruising along the Canadian Inside Passage, as well as time in Alaska’s Misty Fjords plus Tracy or Endicott Arms, with stops in Ketchikan, Sitka, Skagway (a first-time port for Windstar) and Juneau.
Windstar also will offer far-reaching Cruise Tours for the comprehensive Alaska experience combining coastal cruises with overland explorations to Denali and Fairbanks in 2021.
“We achieved the highest guest ratings in the company’s history during our second season in Alaska in 2019, proving that Windstar is the absolute best way to experience the majesty of Alaska,” says John Delaney, President of Windstar Cruises. “I was fortunate to have the opportunity to sail for a few days during our Alaska season and was able to visit the small native community of the Inian Islands and to kayak deep up in Tracy Arm – it was an incredible experience that is truly a life-changing adventure. Our 2019 season sold out quickly, and we encourage people to book early for 2021,” he added.
While Windstar’s popular 11 (and more)-day itineraries in Alaska allow plenty of time for scenic cruising and in-depth exploration, Windstar’s new seven-day cruise is in response to guest demand for shorter options to explore Alaska in an immersive way.
Guests will see something spectacular every day, with no days spent “at sea,” allowing them to get the most out of their Alaskan cruise in a shorter amount of time.
With new Alaska itineraries and ports comes the opportunity for new shore excursions and experiences, including exclusive offerings as part of the line’s innovative Signature Expeditions program, where a team of six experts is on board sharing the history of the region, cultural tales, scientific discoveries and insider knowledge.
New 2021 Signature Expeditions include Zodiac cruises and kayaking in Icy Bay, a remote fjord near Prince William Sound that’s part of the Wrangell-Saint Elias Wilderness.
In Barry Arm, three glaciers flow from the Chugach Mountains into the fjord, making the area magnificently picturesque. The location is perfect for Zodiac cruises and kayaking with Windstar’s Expedition Team because the area is relatively ice-free with smooth waters.
New 2021 shore excursions include experiences like taking the vintage White Pass & Yukon narrow-gauge train from Skagway through a panorama of mountains, glaciers, waterfalls, tunnels and historic sites, or embarking on a Glacier Point wilderness safari, including catamaran cruising along ice-scoured fjords, hiking through dense rainforest and paddling a canoe on a mountain lake to the stunning face of an ice wall.
In addition to unique itineraries and excursions, Windstar also excels at bringing Alaska’s local bounty on board for guests to enjoy with their chefs’ focus on sourcing local ingredients, which will continue in 2021. These tasty items include seasonal huckleberries, reindeer and venison sausage, birch syrup and of course seafood like King and Sockeye Salmon, Pacific Ling Cod and King Crab.
All 2021 Windstar Alaska sailings will take place aboard the reimagined 312-passenger Star Breeze, with 50 new suites, two new restaurants, an enhanced spa and fitness center and more. Rates for 2021 Alaska sailings and cruise tours start at $2,999 per guest.
To learn more about Windstar’s unique style of authentic small ship cruising in Alaska, contact a travel advisor or Windstar Cruises at 1-800-258-7245, or visit www.windstarcruises.com.
SOURCE: Windstar Cruises press release.
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