Seattle To Juneau

14 Days

13 Nights

For those who love to see ‘whats around the next corner’ this trip is for you. Our days are governed by the ebb and flow of the tide and you will  quickly slip into boat mode as we leave civilization behind.  Discovery’s Canada Inside Passage cruises are very opportunistic in nature and with no set schedule we can make the most of wildlife encounters along the way. Join us on an unforgettable voyage from Seattle to Juneau.

Tour Map

Sample Itinerary

Welcome aboard Discovery (10am) and depart Seattle. The breeze carries with it an air of freedom and the scent of adventure as Discovery clears the Ballard Locks that connect Seattle’s Lake Union to the salt water of Puget Sound. Relax on board this afternoon as we cruise towards the San Juan Islands.

Wake up to the smell of freshly brewed coffee and take a stroll on deck before breakfast as Discovery gets underway. We’ll cross the Strait of Juan de Fuca and cruise through the San Juan Islands, a beautiful archipelago of over 450 islands, rocky pinnacles and beaches. Keep a look out for Orca Whales that frequent this area. We’ll time the tide later in the day and sneak through Dodd Narrows just south of Nanaimo (on Vancouver Island) where we’ll clear Customs and tie up for the night.

Today we’ll make tracks north cruising in the Strait of Georgia that separates Vancouver Island from the mainland. This passage is 150 miles long and varies in width from 11.5 to 34.2 miles wide. Our distance travelled today depends somewhat on wind and tide (if its with or against us) and Captain Swanson will choose a pretty harbor marina at which to overnight allowing guests time to get off the boat and explore.

Georgia Strait narrows and a myriad of interconnecting tidal passages and inlets mark the beginning of a more remote region of British Columbia dotted with islands and marine parks. We’ll wind our way through the swirling currents (which on the ebb and flood can generate whirlpools and standing waves) to Desolation Sound and into Teakerne Arm and drop anchor in a secluded cove beneath a waterfall that spills from a lake high above. It’s a beautiful place to kayak and/or skiff ashore for a short hike.

Our route up Johnstone Strait to Blackfish Sound and the Broughton Archipelago today takes us right past the famous rubbing beaches waterways where Orca Whales congregate each summer to feed and socialize. Ocean currents support abundant marine life in the surrounding waters here so keep a look out also for Humpback Whales, Pacific White-sided dolphins, Porpoise, Seals and a variety of sea birds.

This morning we will round Cape Caution to the east of Vancouver Island’s northern point and cruise to one of our favorite anchorages in Fitz Hugh Sound. We’ll skiff to shore and hike through a coastal forest to a driftwood littered beach. Explore the beach and rock pools or join us on a longer guided hike to West Beach. It’s a great spot to watch the sun set over the Pacific Ocean.

Today begins at a leisurely pace. Then it’s a short cruise to the remote community of Shearwater where we will dock amongst fishing boats and yachts at the small marina. The locals you meet dockside have many interesting stories to share or pop up to the Pub and relax on the patio.

The scenery over the next few days brings new meaning to the phrase “getting away from it all”. Remote narrow passages, deep fjords and cascading waterfalls form part of the majestic landscape of British Colombia’s northern coastal fringe. You’ll feel like you’re in another world here. Dense rainforest, rich river estuaries and salmon streams provide habitat for Wolves, Brown Bear, Black Bear and the elusive Spirit Bear. Our anchorage tonight lies tucked beneath snowcapped mountains and we’ll spend time exploring (by skiff or kayak – your choice) and looking for wildlife.

We’ll make our way toward the coast again today and cruise to Prince Rupert a port city and transport hub at the western terminus of the Trans-Canada Highway.

We’ll make an early start from Prince Rupert this morning and take a shortcut through Venn Passage, a small channel marked by a dozen or so buoys and range lights, to Chatham Sound that opens into the waters of Dixon Entrance. We need to clear customs on arrival in Ketchikan. There will be time to explore the town in the afternoon or the following morning.

The bench seat in front of the wheelhouse is a popular vantage point as we cruise through the Wrangell Narrows. A winding, 22 mile long channel between Mitkof Island and Kupreanof Island, this passage has 65 navigational markers and is in places barely wide enough to accommodate the Alaska State Ferry. The Alaskan fishing community of Petersburg is situated at the northern entrance. With a proud Scandinavian heritage, canneries and a commercial fishing fleet it is an interesting and convenient overnight destination.

We continue ever northward through waters frequented by Humpback Whales. We hope to spot these gentle giants and visit a Sea Lion rookery on the way to a small cove nestled beneath a hanging glacier at the edge of the Tracy Arm Fords Terror Wilderness.

Today we will cruise the length of Tracy or Endicott Arm beneath sheer granite walls with cascading waterfalls. We’ll navigate our way between glittering blue icebergs in the hope of reaching the massive face of a tidewater glacier. Keep a look out for Bear, Mountain Goats, Bald Eagle, Harbor Seals with pups on icebergs and their nemesis the Orca (Killer) whale.

This afternoon its a scenic cruise to Taku Harbor where guests have one last opportunity to kayak and/or explore an abandoned fox farm, dock pilings and rope swing before a celebratory dinner to cap off an amazing journey.

Its the final morning and a short 2 hour cruise into Juneau where we aim to be docked (after breakfast) by approximately 10am.

Please keep in mind: While cruises follow the general route described weather, tides and wildlife encounters will at times determine the evenings destination. This spontaneity allows us to provide the best trip possible and is one of the joys of small ship cruising.

From our Guests:

Photo by Ron Niebrugge

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