Cruising Alaska, on both large ships and small, is very popular. The country is beautiful and lots of it can be seen from a ship. Whether you are on an Alaska's inside passage cruise, an Alaska glacier cruise, or an Alaska adventure cruise, the experiences are unique.
If you are comparing small ship to large ship cruising experiences, Alaska offers more dramatic differences than any other location because many of the biggest ships sail side by side with many of the smallest.
Much of the beauty of Alaska is hidden up long, deep fjords. Large ships sail up a fjord until it starts getting narrow and turn around. The smaller ships can go much further into the less explored areas.
Small ships can alter their course to follow a pod of whales or pull closer to shore to get that close-up of a bear. Several of them will anchor in a cove so the passengers can get out on kayaks to explore the shoreline or take a hike in the woods.
Everybody should take an Alaska cruise but, if you really want to experience Alaska, take a small ship cruise.
Here is a list of the lines that offer Alaska cruises on small ships. Clicking on the company name will take you to a more detailed description of the company, it's ships, and their itineraries.
Alaskan Dream Cruises - has three ships in Southeast Alaska. Their "tag line" is that they are true Alaskans (the founding family are third generation Alaskans) and they can show off their state as no others can.
American Cruise Line - has one ship sailing Alaska's Inside Passage - the 100 passenger American Spirit.
Fantasy Cruises - has a single 32 passenger ship which concentrates on Southeast Alaska.
Un-cruise Adventures - Un-cruise Adventures is a small company with seven small ships. They are as close to yacht cruising as any company in Alaska. While they offer many opportunities for adventure, the atmosphere is definately elegant.
Lindblad Expedtions - has several Alaska itineraries on two ships.
Silversea Cruises - usually has one ship in Alaska during the summer months which concentrates on the inside passage (Southeast Alaska).