Small Ship Safaris has announced two new cruises departing in late 2013 and mid 2014 themed around Darwin's Patagonia and Alaskan history.
While there are multiple departures this year in Patagonia, only two departures, a 3-day departure on December 4, 2013, and 4-day departure on December 7, 2013, bring on board experts who add insight to Darwin’s landings and scientific discoveries. The journey, called The Route of Charles Darwin, is on the 208-passenger M/V Stella Australis. The route includes sites visited by Darwin during his voyage on the HMS Beagle and navigates the channels of Tierra del Fuego and Wulaia Bay with sightings of the Holanda Glacier, Wollaston Islands and the Italia Glacier where Darwin made many of his discoveries and observations. On board the luxury expedition ship, guests can indulge in fine dining to go with the breathtaking views; there are two spacious lounges and even an on board gym. See: http://smallshipsafaris.com/destination/patagonia/
Lecturers on board are Sergio Zagier, John Woram and Gerardo Bartolomé. Zagier, a leading Argentine publisher of books and maps related to Patagonia, serves as advisor to Argentina's Minister of Tourism. Woram authored two books on Darwin: Charles Darwin Slept Here: Tales of Human History at World’s End, (Rockville Press, 2005) and Here Be Giants: Travelers’ Tales from the Land of the Patagons (Rockville Press, 2009). Bartolomé in 2003 led an expedition navigating the Santa Cruz River (southern Patagonia) that recreated Darwin and FitzRoy´s trip in the same place in 1834. He has authored several books concerning Darwin.
Next summer guests can explore Alaska’s heritage on the 88-passenger S.S. Legacy (departure dates June 15, 22, 26; July 6, 13, 20, 27 and August 3, 10, 17 2014). Featured highlights of Alaska’s Golden History adventure include the Tlingit culture at Chief Shakes Tribal House, hand-carved totems in Wrangell and Sitka’s Russian heritage with guided tours to Castle Hill, St. Michael’s Russian Orthodox Cathedral, Sitka National Historic Park and the Alaska Raptor Center. Guests visit Glacier Bay National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Biosphere Reserve, and explore Petersburg on a walking tour of the town’s Scandinavian heritage. There is also a ride in a 1920’s-era street car and the White Pass & Yukon Route railway in Skagway between wandering through museums imbibing this region’s colorful frontier history and lore. See: http://smallshipsafaris.com/itineraries/alaska-golden-history/.
The ship, newly refurbished in 2013, emulates the old-world charm of a turn-of-century coastal steamer, complete with period costumed characters who wander through the halls and salons. Exquisitely appointed with period decor, the vessel's carved wooden cabinetry, Grand Salon complete with a full bar and dance floor, Klondike Dining Room with wine bar, Pesky Barnacle Saloon, hot tub, sauna, fitness equipment, yoga classes, and massage suite are features accessible to all guests. The S.S. Legacy's four decks provide ample outside viewing opportunities and relaxing public spaces for gathering with new found friends. Elevator access is available to three of the public decks.