Wednesday, 19 January 2011

InnerSea Discoveries Reports Strong Inaugural Sales


InnerSea Discoveries has reported that sales are strong for inaugural cruises aboard its two expedition ships that are scheduled to launch in May. The ships will offer seven-night cruises in Alaska’s Inside Passage, which can be combined for 14-night Ultimate Adventure cruises, through September. In particular, bookings for the 14-night cruises are fours times higher than expected, according to Tim Jacox, the line’s executive vice president of sales and marketing.


The 50-passenger ships, the Wilderness Adventurer and Wilderness Discoverer, will sail between Juneau and Ketchikan (and reverse) on a Western Coves and Eastern Coves itinerary. The itineraries will bypass the usual ports visited by most large ships in favor of a deeper wilderness experience that includes excursions like hiking and kayaking. Between Ketchikan and Juneau, the only port visited is the Tlingit village of Klawock, where guests will meet with locals, hear stories about their culture, visit an active carving shed and totem poles, and explore the area.

The ships will also visit five wilderness areas -- Capitan Passage and Devilfish Bay in Tongass National Forest, Little Port Walter and Mist Cove, Patterson Bay and Deep Cove, The Brothers Islands and Frederick Sound, and Endicott Arm and Ford’s Terror Wilderness. Highlights will include a full-day of whale watching in Frederick Sound; up-close view of Dawes Glacier, an actively calving tidewater glacier; hiking in remote areas; and an exploration of El Capitan Cave, the largest known cave in North America.

The Eastern Coves itinerary will spend more time exploring the wilds of the mainland, including two wilderness areas, plus LeConte Bay and Misty Fjords National Monument. Between Juneau and Ketchikan, the only port call will be Wrangell, where guests will land by skiff at Chief Shakes Tribal House for native Tlingit storytelling, visit Kiksetti Totem Park, and the museum or take an optional tour such as a river boat ride up the nearby Stikine River or go mountain biking.

Each ship will carry 28 kayaks, 10 stand-up paddle boards and a limited number of wetsuits, rain gear, binoculars, trekking poles, Osprey daypacks and snorkeling equipment. Hiking and kayaking trips will be in groups 12 or fewer guests and will range from short excursions to eight-hour expeditions. Independent touring also is available. In addition, guests will be able to participate with crew to collect samples and data to submit to the forest service and other organizations. And one night each week, guests may embark on an optional overnight kayak trip with full camping gear and guide provided.

On board will be hot tubs, a sauna, exercise equipment, yoga on deck and 24-hour espresso/coffee/tea service. Cabins will feature memory-foam mattresses and flat-screen TVs with DVDs and iPod docks. An underwater bow camera will stream live video of wildlife, including dolphins surfing the bow wake on the TVs. The main salons will echo the feeling of a 1940s National Park Service Lodge and a neighborhood pub. Meals will feature fresh ingredients, including locally caught Alaskan seafood.

Fares for the seven-night cruises start at $1,795 per person, double, and include transfers and all activities except optional excursions. Port charges of $167 per person per week, as well as massages, alcoholic beverages and gratuities, are extra. Select dates are designated as Family Discoveries with a focus on activities tailored for all ages. Kids 12 years and younger receive a 25 percent discount on all departures and 30 percent on Family Discoveries voyages. For more information, call 877-901-1009 or visit www.innerseadiscoveries.com.