Alaska Yacht Cruises
of Here are answers to some of our guests’ most frequently asked questions about Alaska yacht cruises with Northern Explorer Adventures. If you need additional information, please contact us!
What is the best time to cruise to Alaska?
Our Alaska yacht cruises are offered continuously from the middle of May through September 15 and, in general, anytime during these months is a good time to go. Spring is an excellent time to see wildflowers in bloom and the fall is known for colorful fall foliage. The warmest and longest days of the year are in June and July – a trip during this time is perfect for watching glacier calving.
How long are your Alaska yacht cruises?
We offer 4-day/3-night and 5-day/4-night cruises, departing from Whittier. Full boat charters and customized trips of one to seven days are also available upon request. Please contact us to discuss your plans.
If you’re looking to extend your stay and explore Alaska’s unique interior, consider adding a land tour to the beginning or end of your cruise. Known as cruise tours, these allow you to visit and explore other parts of Alaska. If you are interested in a cruise tour, please contact us – we are happy to recommend and help you arrange a tour before or after your Alaska yacht cruise on Prince William Sound.
Can you do trips longer than five days or shorter than three?
We are happy to customize trips of one to seven days. Please contact us to discuss your plans.
Can I book the entire boat?
Absolutely! A full boat charter is wonderful for family vacations, corporate retreats or groups of friends that want to travel together. For a flat rate, you can charter the entire boat for up to six guests. Contact us to discuss your plans.
Where does the cruise start and end? How do I get there?
All of our cruises depart and return to Whittier, which is approximately an hour from Anchorage, where the state’s largest international airport is located. Transportation options to and from Whittier include a rental car, private transportation, limousine, or a ride on the Alaska Railroad. We are happy to assist with pre- and post-cruise transportation, so just let us know when you make your booking. Our partners at the beautiful Lakefront Anchorage Alaskan lodge also offer exclusive rates for our guests wishing to stay in Anchorage before or after their trip. Click here for details.
How much does an Alaska yacht cruise cost?
Our all-inclusive cruise rates vary depending on the length of your trip, stateroom choice and number of people. Costs are calculated per person, and all rates are based on double occupancy. We are also happy to accommodate single travelers. In addition, we offer full boat charters for up to six guests. Find on the details on our rates page.
When considering your Alaska cruise vacation options, be sure to compare our competitive rates, luxury accommodations, gourmet cuisine, small group size and personalized itineraries. We believe you will find Northern Explorer Adventures offers the highest standard of comfort and service at a comparable price.
What if I am traveling by myself? Do I have to pay more?
Our rates are based on double occupancy, however, we are happy to accommodate single travelers. If you want to guarantee a private stateroom, a 65 percent single supplement charge will apply. If you are willing to share a stateroom, but we are unable to match you with a roommate, you will not be charged a single supplement. Please let us know your preference when making your reservation.
How can I pay for my cruise?
A 50 percent deposit per person is required to reserve your space for your requested dates. The balance is due 14 days prior to departure. Payment options include:
Should I tip the captain and crew?
Gratuities – or tips – are absolutely not required. If you have received exceptional service during your cruise, you may choose to give a gratuity, although it is never expected. Some guests ask us how much is appropriate. Again, this is completely up to you. Based on our experience, an average gratuity is about 15 percent of your individual cost. This is then shared between the crew, as the captain does not accept gratuity. If you wish, you can give the gratuity directly to the crew or provide it to the captain along with your instructions.
Is a luxury Alaska yacht cruise worth it?
We believe our all-inclusive cruises offer an incredible value and are one of the best ways to experience all that Alaska has to offer – from glaciers and wildlife, to hiking and fishing. You will explore awe-inspiring scenery, enjoy your choice of excursions, rest in the comfort and privacy of your own stateroom, and dine on gourmet cuisine aboard a luxurious 68-foot yacht, which you will share with only five other passengers and three crew members.
What will I see on my cruise?
“The last frontier,” as Alaska is often called, is well-known for abundant wildlife, unspoiled wilderness and glistening glaciers. Aboard the Northern Explorer, keep your eye out for moose, caribou, dall sheep, grizzly bears, puffin, seals, humpback and killer whales, eagles and more. Your time on our Alaska yacht cruise will also introduce you to Alaska Native culture and gold rush history. And you’ll have your choice of diverse excursions, such as kayaking, fishing, hiking and beach combing, customized to your interests and abilities.
When’s the best time to see whales?
Whales make their northbound migration to Alaska beginning in February, so our summer cruise season is the perfect time to see these wondrous creatures. Humpback and minke whales, orcas, Pacific white-sided dolphins, and dall and harbor porpoises can all be seen in Alaska’s waters generally between June and early September.
What should I wear?
You’ll encounter a range of temperatures and conditions on your Alaska yacht cruise. From the frigid temperatures on a glacier hike to warm afternoons in quaint fishing villages along the coast, you’ll definitely want to layer your clothing for comfort. During the day, consider casual sportswear, such as windbreakers, pants and jogging suits, as well as hiking boots or comfortable walking shoes with rubber soles. At night, you’ll appreciate having a sweater or light jacket to keep you warm. Remember that the weather can be unpredictable, so don’t forget your ponchos or rain gear and fleece jackets. We always recommend that you carry a light pair of gloves, a hat and sunglasses – and don’t forget your camera and binoculars! See our recommended packing list for more suggestions.
What should I bring?
Packing requirements for an Alaska yacht cruise vary depending on what kind of activities you are planning, as well as your own personal needs and lifestyle. However, to help you get started, we have compiled this comprehensive list of essentials to pack.
Should I bring my kids?
An Alaska yacht cruise can certainly be a family affair. Kids will enjoy the adventurous activities and parents will love the educational aspects of the trip. Our flexible itineraries and excursion options ensure that there is something for everyone to enjoy throughout the voyage.
Will I get seasick on board?
Very unlikely! The Northern Explorer is equipped with state-of-the-art stabilizers designed to minimize movement. However, there are many over-the-counter and prescription treatments for seasickness, so if you are prone to motion sickness, we recommend that you discuss preventative measures with your doctor or local pharmacist.
Will my cruise be canceled if there aren’t enough passengers?
With a maximum of six guests, it would be very rare for your trip to be canceled due to the number of passengers. Our cancelation policy applies primarily for causes such as weather or other safety-related issues.
Is my stateroom choice guaranteed?
Yes, once your booking is confirmed, your stateroom is guaranteed.
What if the other passengers want to do something other than what I want to do?
Every Northern Explorer Adventures cruise is customized to suit the interests and abilities of our guests. Our small group size and guest/crew ratio mean that we can provide attentive service, and tailor the day’s activities to each guest’s preferences. For example, at one location, we can put guests ashore for hiking, beachcombing, gold panning or just relaxing, while our experienced guides launch kayaks for another group of guests, or take out the skiff for a photo safari or some fishing.
Can I go fishing?
Fishing is an important part of Alaska’s culture and economy, and we enjoy sharing that activity with our guests. Depending on the area we are in, you might fish for king, pink, silver and sockeye salmon, or halibut, rainbow trout, char and steelhead. We provide all the gear, but be sure to pick up your fishing license before you board. Fishing licenses are available online or at most Alaska grocery stores and outdoor outfitters.
Can you accommodate special meal requests?
Our dedication to providing truly customized trips extends to the dining room. If you have special dietary needs or allergies, our professionally trained chef is happy to prepare delicious meals that accommodate any dietary restrictions, including vegan, vegetarian, gluten intolerant or nut allergies. Just talk with us about your needs when you book your cruise.
Will my cell phone work while on board?
Cell phones work in a large portion of our cruising area. There are areas of restrictive coverage but we are usually within cell range each day at some point. We always travel with satellite phones for communications when cell service is unavailable. And, of course, the yacht is equipped with VHF radios for all Coast Guard communications.
Do you have on-board internet?
We do have the ability to connect to the internet using a “hot spot.”
Will I be cold on my Alaska yacht cruise?
Contrary to what you might think, Alaska is quite mild five months a year. Temperatures in June, July and August – when most people visit – range from 60°F – 80°F in the daytime, and 40°F – 50°F at night (although you may encounter colder conditions during certain activities, such as glacier trekking). We recommend dressing in layers so you are comfortable all day, regardless of the activity.
Is it light all the time during the summer?
Known as the “land of the midnight sun,” Alaska experiences long periods of daylight in April through September, with the longest day of the year on June 21, summer solstice. The amount of daylight depends on where you are and when you are traveling, but in the height of summer, you can step out on deck at 11 p.m. and have splendid views of Alaska’s pristine scenery and abundant wildlife.
Comparing your options
When considering your Alaska private touring yacht options, be sure to compare our competitive rates, luxury accommodations, gourmet cuisine, small group size and personalized itineraries. We believe you will find Northern Explorer Adventures offers the highest standard of comfort and service at a comparable price.