Alaskan Dream Cruises is expanding its seven-night True Alaskan Family Cruises in 2017 with an overnight stay and second day in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve.
The extra time in Glacier Bay allows guests to spend more time enjoying the scenery and wildlife around the Marble Islands, Gloomy Knob, and Margerie Glacier. It will disembark in Bartlett Cove near the park’s visitor center, as well as in Reid Inlet, a more remote wilderness area that cruise travelers typically only sail past.
In Bartlett Cove, the only inhabited area of the park, adults and kids can visit “Snow,” the largest humpback whale skeleton exhibit in the United States. The newly opened Huna Tribal House, also nearby, is a gathering place for tribal members and a learning place for visitors interested in Tlingit history and culture.
A National Park Service ranger and a Native Huna Tlingit interpretive guide will be aboard to spend time with families and to share the park’s natural wonders and history as an Alaska Native ancestral home. Kids can also become a Junior Ranger; family cruises are staffed with a designated Youth Expedition Leader, who leads activities and educational programs specific for young cruisers.
Other highlights include searching for fossils in Saginaw Bay, whale watching in Frederick Sound, roasting s’mores at Orca Point Lodge, and a Demaree Inflatable Boat excursion in Tracy Arm Fjord. Families can also join the Killer Whale Club by taking a dip in the ocean.
The 74-passenger Chichagof Dream will anchor for the night in the far reaches of Glacier Bay after guests spend the first day in Bartlett Cove. On the second day, guests will cruise past Lamplugh Glacier and back out of the bay after the stop at Reid Inlet.
There are two 2017 departures: July 9 and July 23. Cruise fares start at $4,390 for adults; children ages 15 and under receive a 30 percent discount. Accommodations on the ship, all meals during the cruise, scheduled shore excursions, airport transfers, use of recreational equipment, and standard on-board services are included.
The family cruises are designed for multi-generational groups and families with children age seven and up, although all ages are welcomed.