Small ship Alaska cruises in 2024 and 2025 feature a variety of new itineraries. Plus, our experts weigh on the best 2024 cruise rated by our travelers and other tips. Read this guide on what’s new, or skip straight to our selection of 2025 and 2024 Alaska cruises. Then grab your calendar and contact an Adventure Specialist to reserve your space aboard one of these small ship Alaska cruises in 2024 or beyond.
What’s New for 2024 & 2025 Small Alaska Cruises
With increased demand for small ship Alaska cruises in 2024 comes more departures and more itineraries to choose from. Here’s our round-up of what’s new to consider for small Alaska cruises in 2024, from Prince William Sound to a novel Aleutians Islands route coming in 2025. Watch this space or sign up to receive updates as more new itineraries are released.
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2024: A New Ice-Focused Itinerary
One of the most exciting new 2024 Alaska cruise itineraries on tap is “Ice of the Inside Passage,” a southbound variation of our popular Inside Passage Sojourn aboard 49-guest Baranof Dream. This new route affords guests the opportunity to get up close to the Margerie, Grand Pacific, Mendenhall, Sawyer, South Sawyer, Dawes and LeConte glaciers—making it this ship operator’s most in-depth glacier offering to date! In addition, there may be opportunities to view the Lamplugh, Reid, Herbert, Eagle and Sumdum glaciers on this classic Alaska’s Inside Passage and Glacier Bay cruise. Also included in the itinerary fare is an exciting, high-speed jet boat adventure to the LeConte Glacier and a call to the remote Alaska Native village of Kasaan.
2024: Adult-Only & Kid-Friendly Departures
Want to guarantee your small ship Alaska cruise in 2024 has your ideal passenger complement? Look for alternative departures of the Wild & Woolly Alaska Cruise, which also offer a slightly different route that features 2 full days in Glacier Bay. Leave the kids at home for select Glaciers & Tranquility, adult-only departures. These sailings feature a deeper dive into education, an elevated drinks menu at the bar and onboard activities like top-deck dance parties. Or bring the whole family on Kids in Nature, family-friendly departures. These family-oriented sailings are open to guests of all ages, and feature kid wrangler guides and active days to keep young ones busy.
2024: Explore More of Prince William Sound
New in 2024, the 8-day Prince William Sound Explorer travels farther than other small ships in the region, thanks to the stable, 36-guest Safari Explorer. When not cruising in Hawaii, this ship will be dedicated to her new Prince William Sound itinerary. With included transfers to begin and end the trip in Anchorage, this small ship Alaska cruise in 2024 is ideal for linking additional Alaska trips to the Kenai and Katmai Peninsula, or even visiting Denali National Park. And the region is perfect for travelers who’ve cruised in Alaska’s Inside Passage before and want something new.
On this new itinerary, pay a special visit to Cordova, a small fishing town only accessible by air or water. Learn about the town via a few options, including an Eyak Tribe cultural program or the Prince William Sound Science Center. Take in tidewater glaciers and narrow fjords. Even view a fish hatchery and learn about Alaska’s salmon species.
Guests can expect the active UnCruise Alaska experience that this operator is known for. Think shore walks, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding and cruising in inflatable skiff boats. Prince William Sound is an ideal region for whale watching in Alaska, and the Safari Explorer’s three public decks provide plenty of opportunity to spot orca and humpback whales.
2024: Celebrate 100 Years of Cruising Aboard Westward
Want a really unique 2024 Alaska cruise? Get aboard the 8-guest Westward. Not only is this ship the smallest option sailing overnight cruises in Glacier Bay, it’s turning 100 years old this year. Be apart of its rich history add your name to her past guest list that includes Bing Crosby, John Wayne and Walt Disney. Refurbishments for her centennial 2024 small ship Alaska cruises include an overhauled transmission, fresh fastenings and planks, and a whole host of updates from a team of shipwrights, painters and machinists in late 2023.
2025: Aleutian Islands + Kodiak, Katmai & Kenai
Debuting in 2025 is a unique itinerary ideal for those who’ve been to Alaska and want to return for something different. The 11-day Aleutian Islands Cruise with Kodiak, Katmai & Kenai focuses on Southwest Alaska, exploring the rugged, volcanic Aleutian Islands along the Ring of Fire, plus the wilderness of Kenai and Katmai National Parks and the bear-rich Kodiak Island. The seafaring 36-guest Safari Explorer will take guests along glaciers, volcanic fields and petrified forest. Regular opportunities to hike, kayak, stand-up paddleboard and explore by skiff will introduce travelers to a side of Alaska seen by few other visitors.
2025: Enjoy More Unscripted Exploration
Launching in 2025, the Wild Alaska Odyssey offers not only 1 day in Glacier Bay, but also 2 flex days for unscripted wildlife exploration. This itinerary uniquely either starts or ends in Wrangell, a charming town that’s rarely visited by Alaska travelers. A stop into the Alaska Native Village of Kake offers a chance to immerse in Tlingit culture via an artist demonstration and viewing the world’s largest totem pole. Travelers will appreciate this wilderness-focused itinerary offered on 40-guest Alaskan Dream—a combination offered by a company with generational history in Alaska.
2025: Access an Exclusive Wilderness Area
Book aboard 49-guest Admiralty Dream in 2025 for an itinerary with an exclusive stop: William Henry Bay. On the new Alaska’s Ultimate Adventure Cruise, guests are treated to time in this special wilderness area that’s privately owned by the cruise operator. This active itinerary also offers longer opportunities to paddle a kayak, explore on a skiff tour, beachcomb and hike. Add 1 unscripted day to optimize for weather and wildlife, plus an optional jet boat ride among ice or the scenic Stikine River, and this small ship adventure is sure to please.
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Best Small Ship Alaska Cruises 2024: Our Top Pick
What’s our pick of the best small ship Alaska cruises in 2024? The top-selling Northern Passages with Glacier Bay & Sitka.
Year after year, by popular demand, Alaska travelers have chosen this 8-day itinerary as their overwhelming favorite. The lengthy route offers far-reaching exploration and the itinerary’s long tenure ensures a well-tuned, exceptional experience. Learn more from our expert’s firsthand experience in Alaska with UnCruise, or hear it direct from travelers in testimonials of this cruise.
The 84-guest Safari Endeavour raises the bar for comfort along the way. She’s been described by our travelers as “comfortable and welcoming” and “well appointed” with “superb food” and “plenty of storage.” Reserve your space now for this popular option among the best small ship Alaska cruises of 2024 (or 2025), and learn why this ship qualifies this cruise for our list of luxury Alaska cruises.
What is the best small ship Alaska cruise in 2024 for you? Every Alaska traveler has different goals and priorities. Maybe you want the smallest ship? A departure during the best time to visit Alaska? The best naturalist guides? An Alaska National Park cruise, or a focused Glacier Bay National Park cruise? Let our experts help you find your ideal trip based on interests, budget and timeline.
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Deals: Small Ship Alaska Cruises 2024 & 2025
Save on your small ship Alaska cruise for 2024 by using our Alaskan cruise deals. Enjoy special deals for groups and solo travelers, or receive complimentary airfare, while supplies last. Our Alaska specialists offer the most up-to-date incentives available and will keep you apprised of all opportunities to save on your 2024 Alaska small ship cruise. Due to our longstanding business relationships and volume-driven buying power, you will never pay more for your cruise.
Watch for 2024 deals here. At AdventureSmith, we always recommend booking early to be rewarded (and avoid missing out).
Book Your 2024 or 2025 Alaska Cruise or Charter Before It’s Gone
Small ship cruises and especially private Alaska yacht charters are increasing in popularity as travelers seek smaller, more exclusive experiences aboard Alaska small cruise ships. Get your small ship Alaska cruise in 2024 or 2025 confirmed by contacting an Adventure Specialist to be matched with the best small ship Alaska cruise in 2024 for your interests, timing and budget.
Want your experience to be private? Alaska 2024 charters book up early, especially on our smallest boats, so whether you want an exclusive charter or semi-private experience aboard ships carrying 8-36 guests, contact us now to secure space for your small ship Alaska cruise in 2024.
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MORE ALASKA RESOURCES:
Alaska Small Ship Cruises
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Luxury Alaska Cruises
Alaska Cruise Guide
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Small Ship Alaska Cruise Reviews
Best Alaska Cruises for Families
Small Alaskan Cruise Lines
Glacier Bay Cruises
Alaska Inside Passage Cruises
Alaska Whale Watching Cruises
Visiting Denali National Park
Alaska National Park Tours
Best Time to Visit Alaska