Due to robust demand for Alaska cruising, Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic, a small-ship expedition line with eco-adventure activities for guests, plans to add two more ships in Alaska this summer—providing 13 additional departures for the 2021 season.
Lindblad announced that it will reactivate its two remaining, U.S.-flagged vessels, the 62-passenger sister ships, National Geographic Sea Bird and National Geographic Sea Lion. Since both sail under the U.S. flag, neither has to make a foreign port call, a requirement for foreign-flagged cruise ships. That rule of U.S. law has derailed plans for many cruise lines (including all the major, big-ship lines and some small lines too) to operate in the 49th state this summer.
National Geographic Sea Bird and National Geographic Sea Lion will explore Alaska on a series of "Wild Escape" departures, starting June 25, 2021, and continuing through August. Those six-day cruises will operate either between Juneau and Ketchikan or between Sitka and Juneau.
The expedition line had previously announced plans for two other U.S.-flagged small ships, the 100-passenger National Geographic Quest and sister ship, National Geographic Venture, to sail in Alaska this summer.
Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic says the new voyages will allow guests to explore Alaska on an "active expedition" to see the state's wildlife and landscapes, all in the compact time frame of one work. The ship will become a "base camp" of sorts, as guests will go ashore to hike through forests, kayak long routes into glacially carved fjords, and participate in other active adventures.
Guests looking for a longer voyage can combine both "Wild Alaska Escape" itineraries. Those who do will benefit from a 10 percent discount. Rates begin at $4,570 per person, based on double occupancy in a Category 1 cabin.
Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic will require all guests who are 16 years of age and over to be fully vaccinated prior to boarding. The line's other health and safety requirements include everything from negative COVID-19 tests to daily guest temperature checks. There will also be extensive cleaning protocols.
This expedition will take a "bubble" approach to exploring. "From start to finish, guests will travel exclusively with their expedition community," the line's press release stated.
For more information, visit www.expeditions.com.