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5 best luxury Alaska cruises for 2024

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Luxury Alaska cruises have a different vibe than posh sailings in balmy climes. Lounging poolside plays second fiddle to shore excursions showcasing the state’s spectacular natural wonders. Onboard experiences are uniquely Alaskan; viewing glaciers and wildlife from your ship’s spacious decks and listening to fascinating lectures from passionate expert guests overshadow trivia games and wine tastings.

The best Alaska luxury cruises also deliver the pampering luxe-lovers crave. Smiling servers will pass you mugs of hot chocolate while you gape at calving icebergs. Cashmere blankets await you in your suite, so you can stay warm and cozy on your private veranda while taking tail-flipping whale pics.

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On luxury lines, many excursions are complimentary. These riveting outings transport you far from crowded ports and touristy shops to pristine forests and lakes or to bucket-list adventures like dog-mushing, glacier-trekking and bear-viewing. Such outings would cost big bucks on premium or contemporary ships. Of course, the cost is folded into a luxury cruise’s higher prices, but you’ll likely see and experience far more when the activities are included in your fare.

If you’re seeking unabashed luxury and thrills galore, try one of these five best luxury Alaska cruises for 2024.

Editor’s note: Cruise fares are based on availability and are subject to change at any time.

Silversea Cruises


Silversea Cruises’ newest ship, the 728-passenger Silver Nova, brings the outdoors in with abundant floor-to-ceiling windows, making the ship an idyllic ride for Inside Passage cruising.

Its seven-night Vancouver-to-Seward voyage visits every must-see port — including Ketchikan, Juneau and Skagway — and also sails to the astonishing Hubbard Glacier. Silversea fares include most shore excursions, so you don’t have to pay extra to immerse yourself in the best Alaska has to offer.

For instance, in Ketchikan, Silver Nova offers a whopping 12 complimentary shore excursions, such as a Hovercraft cruise with possible wildlife glimpses of eagles and whales, followed by a beach landing in the Tongass National Forest, or a ride on a fully enclosed adventure boat to a marine park for a scrumptious seafood boil with crab, shrimp, clams and mussels at Silverking Lodge. In Sitka, 11 included excursions run the gamut from a mountain hike to an alpine lake with a Champagne toast to a three-hour kayak paddle to a floating base camp.

On board, relish all-suite accommodations, butler service, complimentary sustainable caviar and alcohol. Among 10 notable dining opportunities, seven are complimentary. All gratuities are included. Best of all, this ship’s asymmetrical design — new to Silversea — delivers phenomenal views from pretty much everywhere — even in glass elevators.

Silver Nova is offering weeklong cruises, sailing between Vancouver and Seward from May through mid-September 2024. Fares for the June 20 departure start at $4,950 per person.

Related: The best luxury cruise lines for elegance and exclusivity

Regent Seven Seas Cruises


One of the best luxury Alaska cruise ships is the 746-passenger all-suite Seven Seas Explorer. It’s one of Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ most glam ships, and you can pamper yourself on board for a week as you sail from Seward, Alaska to Vancouver, British Columbia. If you love opulence — think exquisite marble and crystal lavished everywhere — and a magnificent multimillion-dollar art collection, look no further than Seven Seas Explorer for your vacation home-suite-home.

Your cruise fare includes so many amenities, like round-trip air, most shore excursions, all specialty dining (don’t miss Chartreuse and Pacific Rim), 24-hour in-suite dining, alcohol, airport transfers, gratuities and, my personal favorite, valet laundry service. The biggest suites come with even more perks, such as a one-night pre-cruise hotel and butler service.

Related: The 2 types of Regent Seven Seas Cruises ships, explained

In Alaska, count on many notable included excursions, like driving the uber-scenic Klondike Highway, feasting on freshly caught salmon at Liarsville Gold Rush Camp or visiting a sled dog camp (petting allowed). In Juneau, search for humpbacks and orcas on wildlife quests at sea or photograph the mighty Mendenhall Glacier from advantageous viewing points.

Ketchikan is totem territory; here, you can meet a Native American artist demonstrating not only how carvings are done, but the significance to their culture. Or visit a raptor rehab center where you can stare down a bald eagle eye to eye.

Seven Seas Explorer is offering seven-night cruises, sailing between Vancouver and Seward from May through mid-September 2024. Fares for a July 17, 2024, “Summer on the Frontier” cruise start at $6,799 per person.



Is a week not enough time in Alaska? For more pampered vacation days and more time spent exploring the 49th state, choose the yacht-like, 458-passenger all-suite Seabourn Odyssey and its 11-night round-trip Vancouver voyage for your Alaska luxury cruise.

Although this is the ship’s last summer with Seabourn (Seabourn Quest assumes this route in 2025), no shortcuts are taken for the final season fling. Service consistently excels. Count alcohol, Regiis Ova Caviar (a company co-founded by superstar chef Thomas Keller) and gratuities among inclusions. The crew pulls out all the stops for Seabourn’s Caviar on the Ice, a complimentary deck party with — you guessed it — loads of caviar to eat and bubbly to sip. It’s a riff on Seabourn’s iconic Caviar in the Surf party offered in tropical climes and just as scrumptious.

Seabourn Odyssey’s timeless design suits the country-club-ish ambience and makes for a cushy onboard experience. All suites but entry level provide private verandas. The ship offers eight complimentary dining venues plus 24-hour in-suite dining. If you like, enjoy the latter for dinner after a day of adventurous excursions; dishes will be served course-by-course. Passengers love the Club, the hangout for afternoon tea and nighttime dancing. Its outdoor terrace lures with two whirlpools and a plunge pool.

While not an expedition vessel, Seabourn Odyssey hosts about 14 experts on Alaska sailings, including academics, scientists and other wildlife experts. They guide the optional (extra fee) Ventures by Seabourn excursions, such as Zodiac, kayaking, hiking and catamaran tours. Highlights include a four- to six-mile hike through a rainforest past a glacial lake to Mendenhall Valley and kayaking to Hubbard Glacier. A professional photographer lectures and offers small-group workshops on how to capture perfect wildlife pics.

Related: Alaska cruise guide: Best itineraries, planning tips and things to do

Note that this itinerary is longer than most (and Seabourn also offers weeklong sailings), delivering a far deeper immersion into the state’s pristine and less-visited allures. For instance, visiting the Inland Islands, Endicott or Tracy Arm and Wrangell are unbeatable. The same goes for scenic cruising in Misty Fjords, with nearly incomparable beauty.

Seabourn Odyssey is offering seven, 10, 11 and 14-night cruises from May through August 2024. Fares for this June 17, 2024, 11-night round-trip Vancouver “Inside Passage and Alaska Fjords” cruise start at $7,799 per person.

Oceania Cruises


While considered an upper-premium line, Oceania Cruises recently unveiled a novel program called simply MORE, adding many inclusions to standard fares, such as round-trip airfare, airport transfers, most alcohol and a $600 shore excursion credit per passenger. This program ups the cruise ante to luxury-level standards.

Not to mention, Oceania Cruises’ ships are stunning, even an older one like the 670-passenger Regatta. Built in 1999, it underwent a major refurbishment in 2019. Expect public spaces in sky and sea hues and an abundance of timeless teak, stone and custom tile work.

Related: The 5 best destinations you can visit on an Oceania Cruises ship

Dining on board is major; all five restaurants excel and are included in the fare (even the fanciest dishes, like prime dry-aged Angus steak and Maine lobster). A complimentary afternoon tea is served daily, with four-tiered pastry carts, artisanal brews and a live string quartet performing.

To complete the luxury experience, book at least a concierge-level veranda (to add free laundry service, cashmere lap blankets, priority boarding and more to your list of perks). Book a suite for 24-hour butler service.

This 10-night round-trip Seattle voyage hits not just the usual stops of Sitka, Ketchikan, Juneau and Skagway. You’ll also visit Victoria, British Columbia, for whale-watching, a city walking tour or outings to cider farms and wineries. Stroll the iconic Butchart Gardens, its winding paths ablaze with colorful blooms.

Explore beyond Icy Strait Point, where wildlife outnumbers the primarily Tlingit Indian population. Look out for grizzlies and bald eagles, learn about the Tlingit culture or combine a grizzly bear viewing opportunity with a humpback whale cruise.

If your questions about Alaska aren’t answered ashore, onboard guest speakers, such as naturalists, passionately share knowledge about the region’s history, culture and environment.

Regatta is offering six-, nine-, 10- and 11-night cruises from May through September 2024. Fares for this July 9, 2024, round-trip Seattle 10-night “Radiant Alaska” cruise start at $3,399 per person.


Sailboats in Valdez, Alaska. REBEKAH P TRAVIS/GETTY IMAGES

While Viking falls in the (self-declared) upper premium category, most cruisers see the line’s ships as luxury. Sailing in Alaska, the 930-passenger adults-only Viking Orion offers an elegant and spacious modern Nordic design.

Entry-level cabins offer a generous minimum of 270 square feet, including a private veranda. These cushy digs include a king bed, spacious bath with heated floor and anti-fog mirror, plush robes, turndown service and complimentary soft drink, water and snack minibar. Bigger, costlier accommodations come with complimentary welcome Champagne, a coffee maker and priority booking for shore excursions and restaurants.

The Spa offers complimentary access to its Thermal Suite, where guests can rejuvenate by alternating between a steamy sauna and a frigid Snow Grotto. Daily afternoon tea service is a treat in the gorgeous Wintergarden. It’s complimentary, as are the ship’s primo specialty restaurants.

Related: The ultimate guide to Viking cruise ships and itineraries

Viking Orion’s 10-night cruise between Vancouver and Seward includes scenic sailing of the Inside Passage and Yakutat Bay and a stop at rarely visited Valdez. There, enticing shore excursions include kayaking by Valdez Glacier; flying over glaciers, searching for wildlife in a helicopter; and a UTV  (utility terrain vehicle, larger than an ATV) adventure through the Chugach Mountains to the Mineral Creek Canyon. One shore excursion is complimentary in every port.

Viking Orion is offering 10-night 2024 Alaskan voyages between Vancouver and Seward from May until early September 2024. Fares for this July 3, 2024, Vancouver to Seward 10-night sail start at $6,999 per person.

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