If you’re looking for an authentic cruise experience to the 49th state, your ship has arrived. Windstar’s Alaskan Splendors itinerary takes you off the beaten path and into areas and ports of call that only smaller ships can access.
The all-suite, 212-guest Star Legend departs from Anchorage and arrives in beautiful Vancouver BC, Canada, 11 days later. Along the way, you’ll get up close and personal with some of Alaska’s most iconic sights, including Kenai Fjords National Park and Tracy Arm’s twin Sawyer Glaciers. You’ll explore First Nations villages and Russian cathedrals, see wildlife galore, and visit off-the-beaten-path ports including Wrangell and Haines. Add in Windstar’s locally sourced culinary experiences, six friendly onboard expedition leaders, and excursions launched directly off the back of the ship, and you have an Alaskan adventure that’s 180 degrees from ordinary.
Cruise the spectacular Inside Passage and ogle centuries-old coastal rain forests, towering mountains, wild orcas, and bald eagles from the ship’s deck.
Windstar is synonymous with elegant ships, intriguing and port-intensive itineraries, and authentic local experiences. Their expert travel itinerary designers have curated unique and exciting voyages that genuinely connect each guest with their surroundings. As the official cruise line of the James Beard Foundation, Windstar also celebrates regional flavors with locally sourced cuisine from some of the world’s most recognized chefs. All of this happens on ships that visit places the bigger ships can’t reach. All aboard!
Sandwiched between the epic Kenai Mountains and Kenai Fjords National Park, the town of Seward is Anchorage’s gateway—and one of Alaska’s oldest and most scenic communities. Your Alaskan adventure kicks off right here in the shadow of Mount Marathon, famous for the namesake footrace to the top every Fourth of July. As you explore the town’s eateries, don’t be surprised if you bump into a roaming moose or two.
Kenai Fjords National Park
Where Seward ends, your journey into the otherworldly Kenai Fjords National Park begins. Stretching over more than 600,000 unspoiled acres, the park is home to tidewater glaciers, abundant wildlife, and endless adventures. Most cruise lines don’t go here—but the Windstar Star Legend does, and offers an unforgettable Kenai Kayak Tour to boot. Spend the afternoon paddling through majestic ice fields with an expert, keeping your eyes peeled for seals, black bears, and eagles.
Take advantage of this time to enjoy the ship’s spa, library, and fitness center. Hang out with the Captain on the Open Bridge and chat with the friendly Expedition Leader about the great Alaskan wilderness. Soak in the two whirlpools, or relax out on the deck and revel in the majestic scenery.
After your day at sea, you’ll dock at one of Alaska’s most culturally rich communities. Sitka is filled with Tlingit, Russian, and early-American history—so get your land legs working again and explore the town’s copper-domed St. Michael’s Cathedral, the Pioneer Home, and the Russian Bishop’s House. Or set off on a Bike and Hike excursion for an off-grid tour that few travelers get to experience.
Welcome to the only U.S. state capital that has no roads in or out. Juneau is delightfully isolated—and dazzling as a result. On your fifth day, explore Juneau any way you choose. Hike along the Mendenhall Glacier, or let the Mt. Roberts Tramway whisk you up 1,750 feet to enjoy panoramic views. Everywhere you go, you’re surrounded by steep mountains capped with the Juneau Icefield.
Haines is one of Alaska’s most popular ports—and an excellent place for hiking and bald-eagle viewing. Grab your binoculars and take a scenic Float Trip down the Chilkat River to spot these regal creatures, which flock to the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve to feed on the summer’s salmon rush. Your expert guide will fill you in on everything about these magnificent birds. If you’d rather explore the local culture, the Alaska Indian Arts Center and Sheldon Museum and Cultural Center are both fascinating.
Tracy Arm & Endicott Arm
Today you’ll sail through some of the most awe-inspiring scenery in Alaska. Tracy Arm and Endicott Arm are two 30-mile-long fjords riddled with plunging waterfalls, evergreen cliffs, and glaciers carved into 7,000-foot-tall mountain peaks. As you slowly float along, you might spot wild bears, deer, and wolves. If the ice permits, you’ll venture to the end of Tracy Arm and come face to face with the mesmerizing twin Sawyer Glaciers.
Wrangell is arguably one of the most interesting towns in Alaska, its history showcased in the totems scattered throughout town. For a deeper cultural dive, visit Petroglyph Beach State Historic Park to see the primitive rock carvings. Wildlife enthusiast? Venture some 30 miles to the Anan Wildlife Observatory—home to the largest pink salmon runs in the Inside Passage—and look for eagles, harbor seals, and black bears.
Today you’ll travel into the Tongass National Forest and the spectacular Misty Fjords National Monument. Lucky for you, Windstar’s smaller Star Legend easily navigates around the icy blue lakes, waterfalls, snow-capped peaks, and 3,000-foot glacier-sculpted cliffs. For an even more up-close-and-personal experience, take a Misty Fjords Zodiac Tour; your expert guide operates the boat as you gawk at the scenery and wildlife right in front of you.
Prince Rupert, BC, Canada
Welcome to beautiful British Columbia and the port city of Prince Rupert. Inhabited by First Nations people for more than 10,000 years, this picturesque area is teeming with wildlife such as whales, eagles, salmon, and grizzly bears—and you’ll have the entire day to explore. The intriguing city boasts a gorgeous harbor, two excellent museums, fine restaurants, and the nearby Butze Rainforest, which is definitely worth a hike.
Canada’s Inside Passage
Today you’ll cruise through the breathtaking fjords of Canada’s Inside Passage. Get your camera ready; you’ll be passing by centuries-old coastal rainforests, pristine beaches, gushing waterfalls, and towering mountains. Canada’s Inside Passage is simply magnificent and home to some 25,000 miles of isolated coastline. Along the way, keep your eyes peeled for First Nations longhouses, as well as the grand totems that pay homage to orcas, porpoises, and bald eagles.
Vancouver, British Columbia, is as stunning as it is sophisticated. It’s one of Canada’s most ethnically diverse cities and home to Stanley Park, five-star restaurants, and a renowned film industry. Take a stroll around the neighborhoods of Gastown, Granville Island, and Chinatown. Wander across the Capilano Suspension Bridge, walk or bike through Stanley Park, then pop into the Vancouver Art Gallery. This is the last stop on your Windstar Alaskan Splendors journey, so before you head home, soak up the city’s culture—and don’t miss out on its incredible food.