Princess Cruises, which carries more passengers to Alaska than any other line, is upping the ante in 2018 by increasing capacity by 15 percent.
Seven ships will offer 130 departures, with more than 75 percent of voyages sailing to Glacier Bay National Park. Departures are from Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Vancouver, B.C., and Whittier. More than 22 cruise-tour options are available, visiting five Princess Wilderness Lodges.
New for 2018, Island Princess will feature a full season of calls to Icy Strait Point on every seven-day northbound “Voyage of the Glaciers” itinerary. Also new are two 12-day round-trips from Los Angeles.
The May-September program includes “Voyage of the Glaciers” Gulf of Alaska sailings between Vancouver and Whittier. These feature two glacier-viewing experiences on every voyage, with visits to the UNESCO-listed Glacier Bay plus either Hubbard Glacier or College Fjord. These cruises are offered aboard Island Princess, Coral Princess, Star Princess and Golden Princess.
Inside Passage cruises are offered on seven-, 10- and 12-day round-trips from Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles. Ruby and Emerald Princess sail on weekly round-trips from Seattle with all Ruby Princess cruises visiting Glacier Bay. Grand Princess sails from San Francisco and has five departures visiting Glacier Bay.
The two 12-day round-trips from Los Angeles aboard Emerald Princess and Golden Princess also include Glacier Bay.
The 2018 season is shaping up to be a huge year in Alaska, when Norwegian Cruise Line will send its biggest ship ever, the new Norwegian Bliss.