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Small Ship Trips

Small Ship Voyages

Take to the sea aboard one of the six ships of the National Geographic–Lindblad fleet and explore the Galápagos, Alaska, and more with a team of experts.
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Land Trips

Land Trips

Our land trips are designed to immerse you in fascinating cultures and draw out the uniqueness of each destination through enriching and authentic experiences.
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Private Jet Trips

Private Jet Trips

Experience fascinating places as far-flung as Easter Island and Marrakech on one epic journey, traveling with a team of experts in the comfort of a VIP-configured jet.
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Active Adventures

Explore by foot, by camel or kayak, or even by dogsled on an active adventure that combines spectacular places, physical challenge, and cultural interaction.
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Our newest small-group trips, provided in partnership with G Adventures, blend fun, hands-on exploration with meaningful cultural encounters, as well as more free time and choices, all for an unbeatable value.
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Improve your photography skills with the guidance of a National Geographic photographer— whether you’re traveling through Japan or heading out on shoots during an intensive weekend workshop in New York City.
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Private Expeditions

Private Expeditions

Explore independently—with all the benefits of traveling with National Geographic—on a private trip with the travel companions and dates of your choosing.
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Train Trips

Train Trips

Wind through dramatic mountain scenery or observe scenes of everyday life, experiencing the world through the nostalgic lens of train travel.
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Family Trips

Family Trips

Introduce your family to the magic of travel on trips designed for travelers of all ages that combine learning, discovery, and fun.
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Student Trips

Student Expeditions

Send your high school or middle school student on assignment with National Geographic to explore inspiring destinations in depth alongside our experts and trip leaders.
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Expedition Details


Experience the remarkable beauty of southeastern Alaska on a voyage aboard the National Geographic Sea Lion or the new National Geographic Quest into a land of mist-shrouded fjords, tidewater glaciers, and islands teeming with wildlife. Search for orcas and humpback whales, kayak around dramatic icebergs, spend a full day in Glacier Bay National Park, and learn about Alaska’s rich Native American heritage.

Our approach during this voyage is one of discovery. We take time to stop and explore this beautiful and intriguing land up close, in the company of expert naturalists who have an intimate knowledge of the region. Our small ship has the flexibility to take you ashore to places that few others see. The long days of summer allow for wildlife viewing well into the evening hours.

Trip Highlights

    • Kayak into protected coves and look for sea otters, seabirds, and whales.
    • Hike through lush forests to cascading waterfalls, and ride an expedition landing craft into coves looking for brown bears.
    • Meet members of the Alaska Whale Foundation to learn about the local whale population, and get a firsthand perspective on Alaska’s indigenous peple from a Tlingit cultural interpreter.
    • Discover Alaska’s seldom-seen, vibrant marine life, revealed by our undersea specialist.

Itinerary - 8 Days

Day 1 — Seattle/Juneau, Alaska

Fly from Seattle to Juneau, the capital of Alaska. Visit the imposing Mendenhall Glacier. There is time to explore Juneau on your own before we embark the ship in the late afternoon.
National Geographic Sea Lion or National Geographic Sea Bird (D)

Day 2 — Tracy Arm Fjord—Fords Terror Wilderness

Enter Tracy Arm, a spectacular 22-mile-long fjord where waterfalls cascade from towering, glacially carved walls. We maneuver among large icebergs, keeping an eye out for feeding bears on the shoreline and mountain goats on the cliffs above.

Day 3 — Petersburg

Discover the small town of Petersburg on Mitkof Island, founded more than 100 years ago by rugged Norwegian fishermen. A visit to Petersburg provides a glimpse of a true Alaskan town and an opportunity for hiking along forest trails. Explore Southeast Alaska’s muskeg, an area with stunted trees and carnivorous plants. There is also an opportunity for optional flightseeing (weather permitting) or bike riding. Enjoy a crab feast for dinner this evening.

Day 4 — Exploring Frederick Sound and Chatham Strait

These waters often make for great whale watching. Look for Steller sea lions stretched out on the rocky islands that dot the channels. Take a walk with naturalists along a quiet forest trail or kayak in the tiny coves in this area. Meet members of the Alaska Whale Foundation—whose work is supported by a grant from the National Geographic/Lindblad Fund—and discuss some of their recent discoveries about the region's marine mammal population.

Day 5 — Icy Straits and Inian Pass

Hike and kayak among the Inian Islands, where an abundance of Steller sea lions and sea otters reside. We’ll search for whales in the rich waters of Icy Straits and, conditions permitting, lower the ship’s hydrophone to listen in on the whales’ communication.

Day 6 — Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve

Spend the day exploring magnificent Glacier Bay, where enormous glaciers flow from the ice fields far above. Watch and hear glaciers calving as tons of ice crash into the sea. Venture near islets that are home to seabirds such as puffins and guillemots, and look for humpback whales and orcas. Get a firsthand perspective on Alaska’s indigenous people from a Tlingit cultural interpreter, who will be on board with us today to share stories passed down through oral tradition and art.

Day 7 — Exploring Alaska's Islands, Bays, and Fjords

Beachcomb, hike forest trails, explore by kayak, or cruise along Admiralty Island, where the massive brown bear is found, along with perhaps the world's highest density of nesting bald eagles. If conditions permit, explore the coastlines of some remote islands by kayak. Enjoy a farewell dinner this evening.

Day 8 — Sitka/Seattle

After breakfast, disembark in Sitka, a unique town with a strong Russian heritage. Visit St. Michael's Russian Orthodox Cathedral, a striking testament to Alaska's roots prior to the U.S. purchase of the territory from Russia. In the early afternoon, transfer to the airport for the flight to Seattle.

Related Trips

Special Offer

Complimentary Airfare

Book now and receive complimentary round-trip airfare between Seattle and Alaska on select May and June 2017 departures. Offers are for new bookings only, may not be combined with other offers, and are subject to availability. Please call for details.

Expedition Team

Accompanying each expedition is a diverse team of experts — from naturalists to regional specialists — who will share their knowledge and insights on the wildlife, landscapes, and local culture. See one of the members of our extraordinary team below.

Flip Nicklin

Flip NicklinNational Geographic photographer and marine biologist Flip Nicklin is one of the world's leading photographers of whales. His majestic photos and amazing audio tracks of humpbacks and killer whales have appeared in numerous National Geographic publications and television specials. The North American Nature Photography Association has named him Outstanding Nature Photographer of the Year. Flip migrates with the humpbacks, spending summers in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska and winters off Maui, Hawai'i.

Flip will join the following departure:

Jul 08 - 15, 2017

Lindblad/National Geographic Logo

This trip is offered in association with Lindblad Expeditions.


  • May 14 - 21, 2017 [SL] REV
  • May 21 - 28, 2017 [SL]
  • May 28 - Jun 04, 2017 [SL] REV
  • Jun 04 - 11, 2017 [SL]
  • Jun 11 - 18, 2017 [SL] REV
  • Jun 18 - 25, 2017 [SL]
  • Jun 25 - Jul 02, 2017 [SL] REV
  • Jul 08 - 15, 2017 [QUE] REV
  • Jul 09 - 16, 2017 [SL] REV
  • Jul 15 - 22, 2017 [QUE]
  • Jul 16 - 23, 2017 [SL]
  • Jul 22 - 29, 2017 [QUE] REV
  • Aug 05 - 12, 2017 [QUE] REV
  • Aug 12 - 19, 2017 [QUE]
  • Aug 13 - 20, 2017 [SL]
  • Aug 19 - 26, 2017 [QUE] REV
  • Aug 20 - 27, 2017 [SL] REV
  • Aug 26 - Sep 02, 2017 [QUE]
  • Aug 27 - Sep 03, 2017 [SL]

[QUE] National Geographic Quest
[SL] National Geographic Sea Lion
REV Indicates trip operates in reverse.

Add one of two six-day extensions to Alaska’s Denali National Park and Preserve. Please call for details.

Expedition Cost

Quest Sea Lion
Category 1 $6,590 $5,890
Category 2 $7,290 $6,750
Category 3 $7,790 $7,730
Category 4 $8,690 N/A
Category 5 $9,590 N/A

Prices are per person, double occupancy. For a single cabin in 2016, add $3,250 in Category 1 and $3,750 in Category 2. For a single cabin on the Quest in 2017, add $3,400 in Category 1 and $3,310 in Category 2. For a single cabin on the Sea Lion in 2017, add $2,950 in Category 1 and $3,375 in Category 2.

Airfare to/from Seattle and airfare between Seattle and Alaska are not included in the expedition cost. The group flights from Seattle to Juneau and return from Sitka, or vice verse, are $500.

View Ship/Deck Plan

Featured Traveler Photo