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19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
My wife and I wanted a small ship cruise to see Alaska's glaciers before they disappear. We chose UnCruise. a Seattle company of good reputation to take us into Glacier Bay. Our small boat got close to places big ships could only view ... Read More
My wife and I wanted a small ship cruise to see Alaska's glaciers before they disappear. We chose UnCruise. a Seattle company of good reputation to take us into Glacier Bay. Our small boat got close to places big ships could only view from a distance. Zodiacs took us a quarter mile from the marine glacier’s crumbling face and to remote shorelines. Booking for us, unfamiliar with cruising, was supportive. Uncruise met us at the Juneau airport and escorted us to the ship. Crew were tops, every member - helpful, enthusiastic, smart. Couldn't do enough for us. The bridge was open most times, the captain welcoming. The ship was clean but spare and dated; food good varied, ample; the bartender a magician. A park ranger joined us for a full day providing a complete tutorial. Were that all, no question five stars plus. My wife completely enjoyed every minute of the trip despite the noisy cabin. The only flaw, and fatal for anyone who expected wilderness tranquility, was our cabin [more below] which, we didn't realize until we left port, was located directly above the throbbing main engine. When we booked the agent assured us both decks were essentially similar, maybe the lower a bit noisier., but save the money. On my IPhone dB meter our cabin measured 75-85 dB relentlessly night after night. Ear plugs and a pillow over the head did little. Home, I measured our electric leaf blower on top setting - 85 dB at 8 feet. IOW we were asked to sleep with a ferocious leaf blower. We can quibble the app wasn't a dedicated scientific meter but I'm satisfied I obtained a reliable equivalence. Four persistent attempts over a month to contact the company finally produced a frank sympathetic response from the CEO and an offer at recompense which we appreciate but didn't erase the experience. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
One of the best trips we have ever been on, for sure. If you want a small boat, with great views, wildlife, activities, crew, and food, and 50 adventurous, well traveled people to laugh with for a week, this is a great trip. We had great ... Read More
One of the best trips we have ever been on, for sure. If you want a small boat, with great views, wildlife, activities, crew, and food, and 50 adventurous, well traveled people to laugh with for a week, this is a great trip. We had great weather, sunny days, but even if it had been misty or cloudy, which we were expecting in Alaska, the breathtaking scenery, abundant wildlife, opportunities to observe them, (not just "spot" them) along with activities, crew and staff, food, and the other guests we met and got to know, made this an AWESOME trip for us. Lots of wildlife - eagles, (one time, we saw 8 in a tree at once) many opportunities to see whales, (including breaching, which is amazing to watch) orcas, sea lions, puffins, bears (Saw three onshore once, the first mate, Alex, announced the sighting, steered the boat toward shore so we could watch, for about an hour or so) moose. Spent three days in Glacier Bay with no other boats (except one sailboat. Captain Rob skiffed out to them and brought croissants and cobbler- as a friendly and diplomatic gesture.) We kayaked to small coves, close to glaciers and waterfalls (even caught a couple thunderous calving glaciers) quiet glacial waters and untouched wilderness. Stopped in small town of Haines for a day, did a river raft with very good guide from area. There was hiking and/ or bushwacking, kayaking, snorkling (obviously with wetsuits, which were provided) or skiff rides each day, or I suppose you could stay on board if you wanted to. There was 20- 30 min of morning yoga/stretching sessions on deck with Sarah, to get ready for the days activities, and also a couple of stationary bikes, stairclimbers and some weights. Excursions and activities included in cost. I cannot say enough about the captain, crew, and staff. Impressive and more. All are enthusiastic, knowledgeable, friendly and eager to share their knowledge and experience. They want you to have a great time, and make it happen. All worked as a team, and it was not unusual to see the captain helping to haul out the kayaks, returning for the day. The guides are eager to share their passions- knowledge of the area, wildlife, plants. There were evening talks, which were plus/minus for me, short enough to listen to, not extensive. We had a Glacier Bay Park Ranger onboard for 2 days, who interacted with everyone, did a couple talks, and even ate meals with us. You could (and we did) go up to the bridge and talk with the captain and other crew. The captain altered the itinerary to get the best weather or sightings. Food was excellent. Breakfast and lunch buffet. Service for dinner, with three entree choices (meat, seafood or veg or could do half and half) big salads available for lunch and dinner, and dessert. All you can eat crabs one night, and a delicious berry cobbler for 4th of July. No formal seating, and getting dressed for dinner is putting on a clean tee shirt, and then finding your friends to sit with. Generous cocktails, good wines, (included in cost) soft drinks at the bar. Patience was our only bartender and somehow she made it all happen, although other stewards could jump in to pour wines when she was busy)The metal water bottles provided are fine to use for the week, but it would be good if there was flavored waters or Mio drops to add to your water, or G2 or Smartwaters or something. There is no cell or internet- absolutely glorious to "unplug" for the week (ship to shore calls if urgent) Most people in 60's age range, with a few college kids with parents. We had three kids under age of 12 on our boat, who were exceptional- enjoyed all activities, books, board games and cards, and even talking with the rest of us. The last night there is a slide show with pics from the week's activities and all your new friends. You can opt to have them emailed to you, and you can keep them. The small boat experience and this kind of access to wilderness makes the trip well worth the cost. Signed up to do another one- just have to decide on an itinerary, but we may do another Alaska one! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
I love wilderness. I love small ships that don't really go "anywhere." This cruise promised and delivered exactly what I wanted. We had 3 whole days in Glacier Bay with nary another person or ship in sight. To add to the ... Read More
I love wilderness. I love small ships that don't really go "anywhere." This cruise promised and delivered exactly what I wanted. We had 3 whole days in Glacier Bay with nary another person or ship in sight. To add to the sensory overload was 3 continuous days of sun, something unheard of in most of Alaska. Alaska was Awakening and while there were no babies of any sort and the bears were still hibernating, it was a great experience. Small ship cruises are most expensive. With 37 passengers and a crew of 25, there was lots of attention. The food was good and the cabin, albeit with its tiny bathroom, was comfortable. Each crew member had a particular interest. What I found troubling was that there seemed to be no one in charge of wildlife spotting. While not every bird, otter, sea lion, seal and porpoise needs to be enumerated, it is good to call them out and identify them. I found that lacking and it was disappointing. There were multiple and daily opportunities to kayak, hike, and go for skiff rides to explore. The activities are not tremendously difficult. On the cruise we were on, I think young children would be bored. I would go again. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
Just returned from the 4/17-29/17 "Famed Passages of Discovery" cruise from Seattle to Alaska. Can't begin to say how incredible it was. The small ship experience let us get to know everyone on board, including the entire ... Read More
Just returned from the 4/17-29/17 "Famed Passages of Discovery" cruise from Seattle to Alaska. Can't begin to say how incredible it was. The small ship experience let us get to know everyone on board, including the entire expedition team. All wonderful, enthusiastic, adventurous people. The mountains, waterfalls, and wildlife were beautiful. Enjoyed the hikes, boat tours, kayaking, paddle boarding, snorkeling, polar plunge, ...... all tailored to the group. You could choose from many options to meet your level of desired activity. The itinerary was altered to get the best weather. The UnCruise team was very impressive - especially noticed how well everyone was treated. It is a rare cruise that allows the team to stop what they are doing and photograph and observe wildlife when they are present, even if that means dinner will have to wait. The entire team was also personally introduced on the first day and thanked by the captain on the last night. The team worked together to get what needed to be done completed - not unusual to see the captain down on the EZ dock pulling your kayak in. He provided the nighttime entertainment one night by singing with his guitar. We had a wonderful stretch of weather - less rain in April than usual. Would love to go on another UnCruise adventure - biggest question is which one should be next. Highly recommend!!!! Cabins are very small (and bathroom is the smallest I've ever seen), but we didn't spend any time in there other than to sleep. Not too much evening entertainment, but by then everyone was too tired to do much and headed to bed. Not too much fitness equipment on ship, but plenty of off-ship hiking, kayaking, and paddleboarding available. This was a "wellness/fitness" cruise so we had added yoga, fitness classes and discussions of nutrition that aren't normally included. Given the space limitations, it was impressive what fitness activities could be done on board. If you like the spa treatments, formal nights, casino, shopping, city tours, or entertainment of more traditional cruises, this is NOT the cruise for you, but if you prefer seeing the unspoiled wilderness & native wildlife with a few adventurous people, this is DEFINITELY the way to go. All excursions and alcoholic beverages are included in the price. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2016
We wanted an adventure experience and we got just that. It was fantastic; we bushwhacked, kayaked, skiff boat excursions, visited a salmon fishery and were up close and personal with the Bears. The staff and crew were first rate, everyone ... Read More
We wanted an adventure experience and we got just that. It was fantastic; we bushwhacked, kayaked, skiff boat excursions, visited a salmon fishery and were up close and personal with the Bears. The staff and crew were first rate, everyone was knowledgeable, helpful, entertaining and felt like family by the end of the week. The food was excellent, rooms small but nice, comfortable and very clean. The land package before the cruise was just as excellent and did not disappoint. For a trip of a lifetime; Un Cruise made it a lasting memory to enjoy for ever. One unique feature is that if nature is showing her face, like 20 plus whales feeding,the boat will stop and let you enjoy the sweet surprise. We also experienced the Northern Lights. We departed from Juneau which is a beautiful city to explore and enjoy and cruised the inside passage and returned to Juneau which was perfect for us. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
This was our first experience with any type of cruise. We chose the small boat because we heard that we would be able to go to areas not normally allowed of the big cruise ships. We were not disappointed! The cabins were very nice and ... Read More
This was our first experience with any type of cruise. We chose the small boat because we heard that we would be able to go to areas not normally allowed of the big cruise ships. We were not disappointed! The cabins were very nice and ours had a sliding door that opened on to the deck. I would not recommend spending the extra money on this type, since there was no added value for the door. Also, because we had no cross ventilation, none of the clothes that got wet were able to dry during the whole cruise (and these were NOT cotton clothes). Everything else in the cabin worked great. The guided trips were fantastic, especially dropping anchor next to a glacier and then kayaking closer. The whale watching was not a disappointment, as we saw quite a few whales. Some even swam just yards from the boat. Another favorite was the snorkeling. Obviously we needed to use their wet suits because the water temperature was 34 degrees. But I never got cold. Unfortunately, there was only one 45 - minute chance to perform this activity and we paid $35 to rent the suit. Very expensive for just the one time. They should have scheduled more snorkeling activities. The crew was extremely friendly and went out of their way to make sure you had what you needed. Megan was a fantastic leader for all of the activities and Dawn was a great guide, who knew quite a bit about many things. The food was excellent, definite fine restaurant quality. Breakfast and lunch were buffet style while the dinner was slightly more formal sit down. For dinner each night you could choose a meat, seafood, or vegetarian. What we didn’t realize until the last couple of days was that you could order half and half. And we didn’t know this until a fellow passenger ordered it. This was not publicized. All in all, we had a great time and will certainly book another cruise in the future. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
Although the accommodations are not luxurious, they were comfortable and adequate. The adventure was unbelievable! We spent little time in the room and most of our daytime hours were off the boat. We kayaked, hiked, went on skiff tours and ... Read More
Although the accommodations are not luxurious, they were comfortable and adequate. The adventure was unbelievable! We spent little time in the room and most of our daytime hours were off the boat. We kayaked, hiked, went on skiff tours and snorkeling was available. We saw humpback and orca whales, bald eagles, puffins, bears and even the Northern Lights!!! Unbelievable beauty and breathtaking experiences being so close to calving glaciers, misty islands, amazing tide pools and feeding bears. The staff was so enthusiastic and informed that it was contagious. I felt VERY safe all the time whether on the boat or kayaking or hiking. The food was terrific, varied and abundant and the on board staff so helpful and cheerful. There were games, movies and a bar for down times. The other guest were from all over the US and world and so much fun to hang out with. I would go again without any hesitancy! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
My kids had a great time, this was their first cruise, so they had no other comparisons. I was expecting more for $20,000 (4 of us)- like linen changes, portion sizes of dinner more than 4oz and special occasion celebrations as shown in ... Read More
My kids had a great time, this was their first cruise, so they had no other comparisons. I was expecting more for $20,000 (4 of us)- like linen changes, portion sizes of dinner more than 4oz and special occasion celebrations as shown in brochure. It is one of the few cruises that you can lose weight, many choices of activities. The staff was wonderful and we enjoyed getting close to nature. I think this cruise line is a great idea for parents with teenagers because there is no internet and the kids get unplugged and do some physical activity out in nature. The evening presentations were also very educational. Kids entertained themselves with board games, books and binoculars (looking at whales and other animals). The staff worked hard to make everyone's trip enjoyable. I would recommend this trip for people, who are willing and able to get off of the boat and are up for adventure. Read Less
17 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
We, a group of 3 couples, took this cruise a couple weeks ago. I cannot say enough good things about this cruise line. When you compare prices of Un-Cruise cruises and the "big ship" cruises, you wonder if it could be worth the ... Read More
We, a group of 3 couples, took this cruise a couple weeks ago. I cannot say enough good things about this cruise line. When you compare prices of Un-Cruise cruises and the "big ship" cruises, you wonder if it could be worth the extra money. The answer is yes. We were on the Wilderness Adventurer. It holds 60 passengers and 25 crew. It is 4 floors. The lowest level is the crew level so we never saw that. The next level has some cabins, which is where ours were, the galley, the dining room and the bar/lounge. On the back of the boat, this is the level you get into your kayak or the skiff but you access this from stairs on the 3rd level. The 3rd level is rooms and the front bow where you can stand out and watch wildlife. The 4th level is the open deck and bridge. The back half is off limits because this is where kayaks and skiff are stored. There are 2 elipiticals and 2 stationary bikes and some weights on this level also. This cruise line is very informal. You do not need to dress up for any meals. Some nights we came in from hiking and went straight to dinner without cleaning up. There is no assigned seating. There is fruit/toast/yogurt out at 6:30am, then hot buffet breakfast at 7:30 every day. Lunch is buffet at 12 or 12:30. Cocktail hour is at 5:30 with a drink special, because the Alaska cruises do not include alcohol, and heavy appetizers. Dinner is at 6:30. During breakfast the chef tells you your dinner choices, a meat option, a seafood option, and a vegetarian option. You pick one. One night, one of our group didn't like her meal so they brought her out one of the other choices. One night I didn't like any of them, so they made me a salad to order. Cookies every day with lunch and at 3pm and a different desert every night. I am a picky eater and don't eat seafood so the food wasn't my highlight. My friends loved the food, especially the all you can eat crab night. The cabin is basic. But you aren't on this ship to be in your room. We were about 6 or so feet off the water, with a nice size window. You have a shower/toilet combo. There is a TV but it's only a couple channels of discovery type shows. We never turned ours on. The rooms only lock from the inside, not from the outside. At first, I thought that was crazy but it quickly became obvious, there is no need to worry. Both the other passengers and crew are all great people. As the week went on, more and more clothing were being hung outside the room on hooks in the hallway. Our floor of rooms had a problem with the heat, we talked to several people about it but they couldn't figure it out. We ended up sleeping with the window wide open and the door cracked to cool off. There is a big white board in the dining area. This is where the days activities are listed plus the expedition leader would tell us our options every night. Some days we all went out on skiffs, some days we all stayed on board and did some wildlife viewing from the top deck. Sometimes, the choices were kayaking or hiking or skiff. The expedition guise are all so interesting and knowledgable. Some had degrees in wildlife but others had other degrees but just love being outdoors. I learned so much from them. The best thing we did a bushwhacking hike. There was no trail, hiked over, under and through the forest. It was a blast! A bear was spotted on shore about ¼ mile from us. Luckily we never saw him on the hike, we did go see him on the skiff on the way back to the boat. There was some kind of different entertainment every night. Some were lectures, one night was crew or guests could sing, the last night was the slide show. We brought some cards with us and played cards a few nights. There are some games on board along with books and DVDs. Every room has a DVD player. The whole week was just so great, no cell phone service, no other people besides who was on our boat, and the park rangers we saw at Glacier Bay National Park. All of the guests were easy going and interesting to talk to. Most guests were probably in their 60s. Our group is aged 33-52. There were a few other 20 somethings there, all with their parents. Almost all Americans, except 2 couples from New Zealand and 2 from Australia. We loved it so much we signed up for another one on board. You get a nice discount for doing so. Wildlife we saw were humpback whales lunge feeding, they kept coming closer and closer to the boat, probably 50 or so yards away. We saw 2 orcas, 2 moose, lots of brown bears, aka as brown and fuzzies, and cubs, mountain goats, seals, sea lions, otters, Bald Eagles, puffins. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2016
We selected Uncruise,- Wilderness adventurer - which went up into Glacier Bay as part of the itinerary. No stops in trinket shopping towns except Juneau for embarking/disembarking. Our trip was all scenery which we wanted, and we ... Read More
We selected Uncruise,- Wilderness adventurer - which went up into Glacier Bay as part of the itinerary. No stops in trinket shopping towns except Juneau for embarking/disembarking. Our trip was all scenery which we wanted, and we observed every species of wildlife we hoped to see: humpbacks, orcas, see otter, harbor seal, seals, bald eagles, puffins, brown bear, mountain goat, deer, various birds, and more. We saw several glaciers and calving. Weather was much better than usual with virtually no rain, and we wore everything from full winter gear to shorts and T shirts on deck. We were able to do a several short hikes, sea kayaking, skiff rides, snorkeling, and the obligatory polar plunge near a glacier. It is true that there is a lot of camaraderie among the guests and crew. Meals were EXCELLENT, and better than expected. Fun happy hour with orderves each night before dinner, when we also signed up for next day's activities. I highly recommend Uncruise for Alaska, and believe it is a far better experience than on a big cruise ship. We have been on 4 prior big boat cruises. On deck were some work out equipment (bikes and ellipticals which were quite worn), but it is a harsh environment - glad they at least had that. Binoculors in rooms and all over the ship. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
We are not leisure cruisers, but this adventure cruise captured our imaginations. The size of the ship, the destination and the activities were all appealing to us, and the cruise was certainly not a disappointment. Our cabin was basic ... Read More
We are not leisure cruisers, but this adventure cruise captured our imaginations. The size of the ship, the destination and the activities were all appealing to us, and the cruise was certainly not a disappointment. Our cabin was basic but adequate with plenty of hot water. Even tho it was above the engine, once under way our sleep was not disturbed. All staff were great from the hotel staff and kitchen staff to the tour guides and crew. Activities for all levels of fitness were catered for from shore walks and skiff tours to kayaking, hiking, bushwacking and even snorkelling. The scenery was spectacular! Cities of Juneau and Sitka had a frontier feel and were interesting to explore. food was extremely good with a choice of main courses and the bar offered a great variety of beers and wines. Would thoroughly enjoy this type of cruise for the active traveller. Read Less
25 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
I have done the traditional cruises in the Caribbean, but when my husband and I decided to go to Alaska for the first time, I wanted to find something different. I did not want a ship that dropped you off for a few hours at a port; I ... Read More
I have done the traditional cruises in the Caribbean, but when my husband and I decided to go to Alaska for the first time, I wanted to find something different. I did not want a ship that dropped you off for a few hours at a port; I wanted to see wild Alaska. I did some research, most of the small ships were priced out of my budget, but I found information about Uncruise. The more I read the more I realized this was just the type of cruise I was looking for. And, when you consider all the excursions are included in the price, it was within budget. We booked the seven day cruise “Northern Passages and Glacier Bay” on the Wilderness Adventurer starting 8/29/2015 from Juneau to Sitka. I choose this particular cruise because the entire itinerary did not go to another port until we disembarked and also I wanted to see Glacier Bay. This trip and the ship surpassed my expectations. Day 1 - Embarkation We flew in two days early, so we had some time to sightsee in Juneau. The day of embarkation, Uncruise arranges a hospitality suite so you can drop off your bags anytime after 9:00 am, which was right downtown, not far from the dock. That left us time to shop and have lunch. Everyone was to meet back at the suite by 4:00 pm. Our luggage had already made it ways to our cabins, so we only had ourselves to deal with. There were tables and chairs set up so you could relax before your journey to the ship and start meeting your shipmates. Mark, the Activities Director, said a few words of welcome. Then we all followed him down the street to board the ship and have our picture taken. Each picture was displayed on a board in the dining room so not only was it easy to remember names of our shipmates, but it helped the crew get to know all of us too. At the gangplank stood the captain of the ship, Shep, who greeted each one of us and welcomed us on board. Then each couple was escorted by a member of the crew to their cabin. At first I was a bit freaked about the size of the cabin and small storage space. But when I actually unpacked, it all worked fine. It is the smallest cabin I have been in, just room for the twin beds (placed together) and a small cabinet. There is more room if you leave the twins separate; otherwise whoever sleeps on against the wall has to crawl over the other person to get out. There are four shelves against the wall as you come in, that is where you store your clothes, no closet. There are two extra pillows on one shelf (you can ask that they be removed to give yourself more room). That leaves three shelves for your clothes. Our cabin was on the lowest passenger deck, I found later on the cabins on the deck above us has about an extra foot of room, which also gives more room for on the shelf for clothes. There is a sink with a cabinet above, which held most of our toiletries. The bathroom is small. Shower is as you walk into the door, and to keep the toilet and your towels dry you pull a shower curtain across. Space is tight, but the shower is a hand held which helps. There is a full window across the back of the bed, and you can even open it for fresh air or to take pictures through. I tend to need some alone time, there were many times that I propped the pillows up against the wall while in bed, and watched the coastline go by. There is also a shelf above the bed, which was great to store things too (like a clock). Each room has a set of binoculars, very handy. We met for happy hour and introductions to the heads of the departments. Then we had our safety drill, very painless. Watched the ship leave Juneau and we were on the way. Dinner was at 7:00. The dining room is open seated, with tables of four and six. You get to choose who you sit with, and you typically get to know most of the people right away. The passengers were probably aged 50 to 70, a few younger and few older. One woman brought her three children, probably late teens or early twenties. There were several Australians and one couple from England. Dinner is plated, and you have three choices, seafood, meat, or vegetarian, all served with the same sides. Each day at breakfast the chef would announce what the evening’s choices were and there was a sign-up sheet. If you changed your mind later, it was not a problem, but it helped with meal planning for the chef to know what and how much to prepare. My choice that night started with a spinach salad with strawberry vinaigrette, salmon in a cream blanche (very yummy), finger potatoes, asparagus, and a rich chocolate dessert with an orange sauce. This set the bar for the trip, the food (including the buffets) was outstanding and served at the appropriate temperature. Blaine, the head chef was amazing and created terrific food in a very limited kitchen. And the pastry chef, Cathi was very talented. (The only “complaint” I would make is that our cabin was directly across from the kitchen and Cathi worked nights, several times I woke at 2:30 in the morning smelling bread baking, sure wanted to walk across the hall and ask for a sample!) I will continue to list each night’s choices, though I did not keep track of the vegetarian entrees. After dinner, we met in the lounge (which has a great selection of books, mostly on nature and Alaska) and an extensive game selection. Also heard what was planned for the next day and met the expedition crew. After that the crew would come around and sign you up for which activity you wanted. What was typically offered each day was a guided kayak trip, open kayak (you had to stay within sight of the ship), paddle boarding, a shore walk (easy), a hike (easy to medium), a bushwhack (strenuous), and a skiff tour. Snorkeling was offered once, they provided full wet suits and about 6 of the passengers took this opportunity and said it was great. There were no trails, this is the wilderness. Bushwhacks tended to be up a mountain, through brush and forest. Most lasted about 2 ½ hours (skiff tours were typically 1 hour). All of the guided trips had one expedition leader, and they all were very good. They were knowledgeable about the history, area, wildlife, and plants. We traveled most of the night, and hit some rough ocean (this particular ship does not handle swells well because of the shallow draft). Most of the time we were in protected water and there was very little motion. One of the things to be aware of, the itinerary that is listed is only tentative. The captain will decide where best to go based on the sea and the weather, which is great so that the bays you are anchored are the most protected for the ship and kayaks. Day 2-Glacier Bay We woke up at 5:45, still sailing to clouds and rain. Early morning continental breakfast starts at 6:30 or so. There was fruit, cereal, pastries, and I think oatmeal and grits. Coffee is not very good, but great selection of teas, cocoa, milk, and three types of juices. Every morning there is a stretch class at 7:00 for 15-20 minutes. It is not yoga, but a very good class to take (don’t need any special clothes). It helps work the kinks out and wake up the body. If not raining it was held on the sun deck, you can’t beat exercise with gorgeous scenery passing by. Hot breakfast was at 7:30 with Florentine scrambled eggs, Cajun potatoes, excellent crisp bacon, and of course all the cold selections offered earlier. The owner of the company showed up when we arrived in Glacier Bay (Bartlet Cove) at the ranger outpost. He greeted everyone individually and spoke about Alaska and the beautiful protected area of Glacier Bay, a very passionate, inspired man. We took on a ranger for the two days that we were in Glacier Bay, who went on the hikes and also spoke in the evening. She was always available for a conversation on deck. There were only 3 walks offered in the morning, a 1 mile in the forest with the ranger, and a 3 hour walk to a river and lake (one was fast paced and one a bit slower). I took the walk in the forest, which was lovely even though it drizzled the entire time. Unfortunately, it was a large group of people and you could only hear the ranger if you were close. At the end of the walk was a skeleton of Snow, a humpback whale that had been hit by a cruise ship and killed. I took a short nap while we started cruising again. Lunch was also a buffet, and let me tell you the food was always excellent and plenty of it. There was a salad, coleslaw, BBQ brisket (very yummy), anchio braised pork, mac & cheese, cornbread with honey butter, vegetable soup and a raspberry pound cake. After lunch the ranger talked about Glacier Bay. The guides talked about hiking safety and explained how to get in and out of the boats and kayaks. We were issued vests for kayaking which were kept in individual lockers. Spent the afternoon cruising and watching for wildlife, saw lots of dall sheep. When wildlife is spotted the ship stops to give us lots of time to enjoy. Traveled to Marjorie Glacier and actually saw some calving (small chunks). Happy hour always had a cocktail on special and appetizer. Today was goat cheese and herb spread. There is beer on tap and a good selection of wine. The alcohol is extra, but the soda pop is free. Also they always had flavored water at the bar, every day something different; one of my favorites was cucumber and mint. Dinner was a shrimp dish or duck with nuki and kale. Excellent cheese cake. Evening talk was about plants for nutrition and healing held in the lounge. The nice thing was that you could also watch the presentation on the TV and hear it on the speaker in your room. Day 3-Glacier Bay Great night sleeping, my husband said he saw the moon during the night, but it was overcast in the morning. Beautiful mountains surrounded us during morning stretch. Breakfast was pancakes, potatoes O-Brian, and large link sausage. We were at Lamplugh Glacier. There were four excursions offered; kayak to the glacier, a skiff and shore, a skiff and scramble (at the side of the glacier), and a skiff tour to this and another glacier. We chose the skiff and shore, spent about 45 minutes in front of the glacier and got a lot closer to it than I expected. Then we were dropped off on the shore beside the glacier for about 45 minutes. The great thing was that there had been a stream beside the glacier that prevented you from getting up close. The stream was such that we could ford it in our rubber boots and actually go and touch the glacier. It was amazing. Lunch was ginger chicken and rice, coconut fish, stir fry vegetables, spinach salad and spice cake. Also, any dessert left over from lunch was placed out during the afternoon to snack on and at 3:00 fresh baked cookies were offered. Took another nap and then watched out my cabin window. Listened to a lecture by the ranger on seals and birds we would be seeing at South Marble Island. I went on deck and spotted two porpoises and lots of sea lions. Very cool! Happy hour had glazed fig tarts with mascarpone and bacon. Dinner was a choice of pork tenderloin with onion jam or rockfish with apricot chutney, green beans and sweet potato puree. Delicious cheese cake. The evening talk was about the different ways that salmon is raised. Day 4-Dundas Bay Sunshine! Woke to the ship cruising and clear skies, saw seals and otters. Morning stretch was interrupted by a moose sighting. Breakfast was omelets, home fries and ham. The excursions offered was a skiff tour, a shore walk, kayaking and two bushwhacks. We took the shore tour, which was great! We saw wolf, bear, and moose tracks. We walked through streams and even through the river, about 1.7 miles. Lunch was tacos with beef or pork, rice, vegetables, nachos, and brownies baked with a bit of cayenne. Our afternoon kayaking was canceled as the wind picked up. Headed off to Icy Bay and whale watching. Finally sighted a breech about 4:30. There were lots of spouts and fluke sightings. Came in for happy hour with drunken watermelon slices and feta cheese cubes. Halfway through more whales were sighted, very active with breeching, tails, and side feeding. Boat finally started back up to send us back in for dinner, which was bacon vinaigrette scallops, lemon chicken and risotto, carrots, parsnip soup, and tisuimi. Dinner was followed by a great sunset. Day 5-Sitkoy Bay at Chichagolf Island Very rough night traveling; the ship was rolling from side to side with loud booms as the waves crashed on the side. We traveled all night, had to move from where it was planned on anchoring to another site because the sea was too rough. There was a beautiful sunrise as we did morning stretch. Breakfast was fried eggs mornay, country potatoes, bacon, and scones. Signed up for guided kayak, what a beautiful day, sunshine and fairly calm, saw lots of jelly fish, zombie salmon (dying after spawning), and a couple of harbor seals. We did see a couple of black dots in a meadow that we found out latter were bears that the hikers saw. Paddled to the settlement of Chatham, which used to be a salmon cannery, now just used as a camp for traveling boats. When the guided excursion was done, we continued to kayak in open paddle around the ship and really enjoyed it. Lunch was chips, salad (great strawberry poppy seed vinaigrette), curry chicken wraps, roast beef cheddar wraps, steak fries with a dipping sauce, cucumber salad and lemon bars. After lunch we did a moderate hike, the wind had picked up so there was no kayaking. Happy hour was on the sun deck. Dinner was Dungeness crab, prime rib, succotash corn, bok chow, beet salad, and chi chocolate dessert. The evening discussion was on the feeding habits of humpback whales. Day 6-Ushk Bay on Chichagof Island Had sunshine again. Breakfast was French toast, link sausages and home fries. Took another guided kayak trip, the water was calm, quiet, and very serene. We paddled to the mouth of the bay, saw an eagle. We then continued in open kayak, this is the Alaska I hoped to see, wild and gorgeous. Lunch we had delicious lasagna, Alfredo shrimp, eggplant parmesan, garlic toast, salad and a great dessert that was cashews in a date bar sort of thing. In the afternoon we did a shorewalk and ventured in the forest for a bit, really awesome. We found a deer skull, lots of dead Dungeness crabs and fish. Happy hour was on the sun deck again, salmon and crackers as the appetizer. We even saw a whale as we were enjoying our cocktails. Dinner was halibut, lamb, butternut bisque, white beans over shaved zucchini. The evening entertainment was Alaska animal trivia. We were going through the Narrows that night, I arrived too late on deck to see but my husband said it was very interesting to see the boat travel through this very narrow channel. That night the crew woke us to see the Northern Lights. Spectacular! Day 7-Magoun Islands Breakfast was cheesy eggs, potatoes and ham. We decided to just do open kayak as the day before it was pretty strenuous paddling. The area was so pretty that most everyone wanted to kayak. We had to wait until the guided kayak trips left (three groups of them), and discovered there was only one kayak left for open, luckily we were geared up and ready to go. All the guided kayaks left the area and we had the islands around the ship to ourselves, just drifting along, soaking in the scenery. It was so quiet, very awesome. This was one of the highlights of our trip. Lunch was grilled chicken, steak strips and blackened cod, Cesar salad and yummy caramel cupcakes. In the afternoon we did a shore walk, did see an eagles, lots of hermit crabs, little fish and bear poop. Dinner was salmon or filet migon, brocollini, mashed potatoes, and a pear salad. After dinner was the polar plunge, and yes, I did it! They then did a slide show of pictures the guides took of our trip. This will be emailed to the passengers. Boat moved to a pretty bay a few miles from Sitka for the evening anchor. Day 8-Sitka Left the bay about 5:45 am. We went on deck to take pictures of the last day of travel and coming into Sitka. Had a delicious breakfast casserole with a cheese sauce and the terrific bacon again. All the crew lined up at the bottom of the gangplank to say farewell. A word about the crew, this was the happiest, most talented and friendliest crew I have ever met on a ship. They love what they do and all of them have time to interact with the guests even though they put in long hours. A bus took us to the hospitality suite at the Westmark hotel. The ship provides transportation to the airport, but if your flight does not leave until later, you can leave your luggage there and continue to sightsee. In conclusion, if you wish to see wild Alaska from the water, this is the type of cruise you should take. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2015
Wonderful time. The crew was great and the passengers all got a long. Food was very good and the general atmosphere was very friendly. The cabin was small but functional-all we did was sleep there. First time on a cruise. Not for those who ... Read More
Wonderful time. The crew was great and the passengers all got a long. Food was very good and the general atmosphere was very friendly. The cabin was small but functional-all we did was sleep there. First time on a cruise. Not for those who are looking to be entertained. if you are looking for moderate adventure, it is very well worth it. Would do it again in a heart beat. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2014
My husband and I are not cruise people but this one ticked all our boxes. A small boat with only 60 passengers but very comfortable with great food, a fabulous crew and lots of interesting excursions. We enjoyed getting out into the ... Read More
My husband and I are not cruise people but this one ticked all our boxes. A small boat with only 60 passengers but very comfortable with great food, a fabulous crew and lots of interesting excursions. We enjoyed getting out into the Alaskan wilderness but it was made so much better by the young, energetic guides who were extremely knowledgeable but obviously loved their job too. The whole crew worked so hard at making sure that we were looked after 24/7. We saw glaciers calving; salmon running; bears feeding; and the whales! Everything was great from beginning to end. I supposed it helped that the weather was magnificent but even apart from that we're sure it would still have been lots of fun. Met some great people and really enjoyed every minute. Plenty of time to relax if you wanted to but also lots of trips onto the mainland or kayaks to really do some exploring. 5/5 from us for everything.   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2014
In 2013, My Mother-in-Law called me and said we are taking the entire family to Alaska for their 50th Wedding Anniversary but they wanted me to research the cruiseline options because they didn't want a big ship and you we had gone ... Read More
In 2013, My Mother-in-Law called me and said we are taking the entire family to Alaska for their 50th Wedding Anniversary but they wanted me to research the cruiseline options because they didn't want a big ship and you we had gone on a small cruise line before. I was thrilled and terrified as my husbands family (His sister and her husband their two kids and our two kids plus our in-laws all have very different interests and I wasn't sure how this was going to work. The small cruise line we had sailed before was Star Clipper but they don't sail in Alaska. A bit of Internet reach turned up Un-Cruise adventures and specifically their Kids in Nature cruise. It was perfect!!! My husband, 11-year old twin nieces, and my 12 year old son love challenging hikes. My 15 year old daughter hates anything too physically challenging but loves to find a quiet inspiring spot to curl up and work on the novel she has been writing since she was 13. I just love Nature. My Mother-in-law loves anthropology, shopping, and any awe inspiring site. My father-in law loves photography. My brother-in-law loves to find a quiet spot to read and my sister in law just goes with it all. Needless to say Un-Cruise had something for everyone. Choose your level of difficulty for hikes and physical activities. A terrific Child Wrangler (not a baby sitter!) but a head camp counselor who helped arrange social activities for the kids and made the activities interesting and fun. Amazing scenery for those that preferred to just hang out. Polar bear plunges for my action adventure junkies. Plenty of great photography! The crew is warm and approachable. The owner of the line met us at the end and genuinely wanted to know if we had a good time. The sites we saw where amazing. The guides phenomenal. Compared with Star Clipper the ship isn't as elegant. Think floating wilderness lodge vs. elegant but the action adventure was awesome! And every shore excursion is included. The craft beer was lovely. The food isn't gourmet but its plentiful and wholesome and hits the spot after a day of adventure. No one goes hungry. The animals are amazing! Bear, salmon, sea otters, moose star fish, Whales and more whales! Glaciers are a spiritual experience. You get up close and personal. We also did the land excursion to Denali. It was terrific but a bit too short would have liked it to be a day or two longer. I would definitely do this again but come to the experience that this is floating wilderness adventure lodge vs. elegant pampered cruise. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2014
Read about Un-Cruise last spring and fell in love with the "dream" of it. When my dream started becoming reality I was beyond excited... I had read and read about all the rave reviews of the cruise line... so had all kinds of ... Read More
Read about Un-Cruise last spring and fell in love with the "dream" of it. When my dream started becoming reality I was beyond excited... I had read and read about all the rave reviews of the cruise line... so had all kinds of hopes and fantasies in my head of our cruise. Un-Cruise did not disappoint!! The experiences and adventures...there's no way anyone else could offer this. I remember one night in Icy Strait we were surrounded on 3 sides of the boat by whales... everyone outside amazed and fascinated with the show they were putting on for us, baby breaching, hearing them vocalize with chirps and clicks and even one that sounded like a boat horn! During all this, I happened to look behind us and saw a large cruise ship crossing behind us... they never knew of, nor would ever be able to experience, the amazing show the whales were giving us. My husband and I both agree, there is no way we could ever go on one of those large cruise ships ever again... We learned so much, we experienced so much... it's really hard to put it all into words... The rooms are small, but seriously, you are only in there when it's time for bed. There are shelves and hooks to hang your clothes, even hooks outside to hang wet clothes (which you have a lot of!) Our only downfall we found was not enough electrical outlets. The "sho-lette" takes a bit to get use to...lol (shower / toilette combo) But we were happy with the cabin overall. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2013
Our cruise started in Juneau. Our cabins were very adequate. Spacious for storage and comfortable for sleeping. The ships crew kept them clean and anything you needed they were happy to comply. Dining was perfect. we had buffet and seated ... Read More
Our cruise started in Juneau. Our cabins were very adequate. Spacious for storage and comfortable for sleeping. The ships crew kept them clean and anything you needed they were happy to comply. Dining was perfect. we had buffet and seated dining. Everything was well prepared and special request were gladly excepted. Our servers were excellent. As a matter of fact we got quite close to all of the crew. There was nothing we asked for on the ship that was not taken care of . The whole ship staff was great. There were 4 in my family. 3 of us had massages and it was worth it. Activities included. hiking, kayaking, polar bear plunge,snorkeling and paddle boards. Every evening our teens were in the dvd library or planning a board game from the lounge with other ship mates. If they weren't to tired from the day's activities. One day was a 5.5 mile hike to a lake by a glacier. So if you do the math, total was 11 miles. so awesome!!! There are always other options available. Never a dull moment. We saw a multitude of alaska wildlife. Humpback whales, sea lions, brown bear, black bear and eagles. That's only mentioning a few. You get up close and personal with everything you do. Our captain even did the polar bear plunge. And he was there for almost every activity we did when we returned to the boat to ask how it was. In my opinion it is the best cruise to take in Alaska. Don't hesitate to call and ask them questions they are so helpful. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2012
We experienced some of the most magnificent scenery in the world as we cruised into fjords & coves that are inaccessible to the mammoth cruise ships. In solitude, our adventure started as we watched Dawes Glacier calf as harbor seals ... Read More
We experienced some of the most magnificent scenery in the world as we cruised into fjords & coves that are inaccessible to the mammoth cruise ships. In solitude, our adventure started as we watched Dawes Glacier calf as harbor seals reefed on the floating ice quite close to our skiff. The culmination of our cruise were the towering cliffs of Misty Fjord dwarfing everything below. The stars dazzled the night sky many evenings. We were also fortunate enough to see an aurora borealis on the horizon. We kayaked, hiked beaches & forests, took skiff excursions, walked on Baird glacier & basked in the unexpected sunshine for. I am a novice kayaker, but the launch ramp from the back of the boat made entering & exiting to water very easy. Hikes were rated from 1 to 5. 1 & 2 hikes were very manageable for most of our group. Experienced hikers took the 3 - 5 treks. Snorkeling & paddle boarding were also available. For a buffet, the food was exceptional. Quality was preferred over quantity. Lots of healthy choices were offered each day at breakfast, lunch & dinner. Happy Hour appetizers were good enough to gorge yourself & skip dinner - which I did the night they served lamb. The entire cruise was a photographers dream. Every turn in the river, bay or cove revealed scenes that were even more spectacular than the last - mists enshrouding mountains, mirror images of soaring cliffs, the aurora. Eagles & sea gulls were everywhere. Groups of harbor seals & individuals were spotted. A whale surfaced & tail-flapped with great enthusiasm near kayakers on day 3. A bear was spotted on the beach from the boat. However, I was disappointed in the wildlife viewing. The orcas had headed south; the puffins were gone; I never saw an otter. We didn't get as close to some of the animals we saw as I would have liked. All in all - it was a truly unique experience that I would recommend to anyone who loves nature & the great outdoors. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2012
We have sailed on a number of small expedition ships and have found this to be our preferred way of cruising. We had a wonderful first week in which the Wilderness Explorer met all of our expectations.The Wilderness Explorer did not have ... Read More
We have sailed on a number of small expedition ships and have found this to be our preferred way of cruising. We had a wonderful first week in which the Wilderness Explorer met all of our expectations.The Wilderness Explorer did not have the luxury of some of the ships we have experienced but the price was quite a bit lower and on the whole, the first week represented very good value for money. The second week however was very disappointing and I would not recommend it at all. Firstly though the advantages. During the first week, there were some good hikes and excellent opportunities for paddle boarding and sea kayaking. . The main benefits for us were the excellent staff especially those helping with the sea kayaking and the small skiffs. The staff were also quite knowledgeable and seemed to genuinely try to make the experience enjoyable for everyone. On most evenings, there was a lecture after dinner and it was interesting to hear from the staff about aspects of the environment or Another great aspect of the trip was that we were able to visit many places which would have been inaccessible to larger ships. This was a real bonus as some places such as Misty Fijords were truly spectacular. It was also wonderful to be in places where our ship was the only one to be seen and which seemed to be true wilderness areas remote from other people. The food on the ship was quite good and very plentiful. There was plenty of variety and lots of salads and vegetables. Except on the final night, all meals were served buffet style. There was also bar where it was possible to purchase cocktails and other drinks and nibblies were served before dinner. In summary, every day during the first week was filled with interesting activities, beautiful scenery and opportunities for exercise. The second week was a very different story. We had booked for the cruise in Australia and I did not realize that there was an opportunity to disembark the ship in Ketchikan. Only a third of the passengers remained on board for the second week- most of whom were other Australians. During this time we had full three days at sea where it was not possible to leave the ship at all. The ship was simply too small for this to be a pleasant experience. Additionally, our mid range cabin was very small and very cold so it was a pleasant place in which to relax. The other days, while pleasant, were spent in areas which could not be considered wilderness areas. I think that the whole week was oriented towards bringing the ship back to Seattle at the end of the season.The staff too, seemed to relax after most of the passengers left. Even on the days which were not at sea, many of the staff seemed to be not as helpful as they were during the first week and we had the feeling that they were simply wanting to finish the cruise. I can understand this as the staff must have worked incredibly hard all season and were probably ready to move on to other aspects of their lives. Finally, we were slightly annoyed that one of the staff made it very clear that a ten per cent tip would be expected at the conclusion of the trip. We know that this is common practice but it still irked. Read Less
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