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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
This small ship, the Lindblad-National Geographic Sea Bird, was able to go into the small bays of the inside passage of Alaska to kayak around icebergs while we got to watch seals swim around us and bears up close on the shore. The staff, ... Read More
This small ship, the Lindblad-National Geographic Sea Bird, was able to go into the small bays of the inside passage of Alaska to kayak around icebergs while we got to watch seals swim around us and bears up close on the shore. The staff, the naturalists, made our trip! No other like it. There was a big ship watching us from the mouth of the bay because they couldn't fit where we went! They took us to a glacier by zodiac and saw it up close. We saw a piece calve and fall into the water with a big boom! Then our naturalist plucked a same bit of ice floating in the water and told us the history and journey that piece took through time. Activities were stellar. Service and knowledge made our trip. More food than we could eat. The cabin was small, but we were only there to sleep. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Continuing our excellent experience with Lindblad, we went to South East Alaska/ Inside Passage this time. As is usual, all aspects of the expedition were impeccable. The ship, NG Quest was just the right size - 100 passengers. The cabin ... Read More
Continuing our excellent experience with Lindblad, we went to South East Alaska/ Inside Passage this time. As is usual, all aspects of the expedition were impeccable. The ship, NG Quest was just the right size - 100 passengers. The cabin was comfortable and had a small balcony for standing and watching nature go by. The dining experience was quite good though it could take some improvement in the quality of ingredients as well as cooking. The naturalists and the outdoor activities were outstanding. It was a special treat to have Tom Ritchie, Lindblad naturalist on-board. Besides him, there was an impressive set of naturalists on-board, including Melanie Healy. The range of wildlife seen and the settings in which we saw them were exceptional. The explanations of the naturalists and the evening recaps were great. The expedition staff were outstanding in managing the logistics of getting us on and off the ship superbly. Most days, they had to do it twice a day and it was all done without a hitch. The highlight of these expeditions is that they managed to keep us off the ship for most daylight hours engaged in activities like hiking, kayaking, paddle boarding, wildlife and nature viewing in zodiacs. And, come back to the ship, just as you would to a hotel while on a road trip except that this was a trip on water. The captain and the officers as is usual on Lindblad ships were always accessible and helpful. If I have a suggestion for improvement, it would be in the area of dining - the fare and the quality weren't as inspiring as our previous experiences with Lindblad ships. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
We were a little last-minute signing up for this trip but our expedition specialist facilitated everything so smoothly, we just packed and took off. So many passengers opted to take an earlier flight than the recommended flight to ... Read More
We were a little last-minute signing up for this trip but our expedition specialist facilitated everything so smoothly, we just packed and took off. So many passengers opted to take an earlier flight than the recommended flight to Sitka that Nat Geo scrambled and the expedition director met us at the airport with a special bus and tours - that was an impressive start! My husband and I had made plans to go to The Fortress of the Bear (GO!! A must see!) so we met up with them later for a private tour of the Raptor Center, another must-do in Sitka. That flexibility marked the rest of our trip, which you can only do with a small group like we had for this cruise. We loved the size of the ship - and what a beautiful ship it is. The lounge at the bow and the dining room at the stern were both surrounded by windows. The bow outside had a unique configuration allowing everyone a front row view of wildlife and scenery - a well thought-out design. And of course, breath taking photos by Nat Geo Photographers adorned the walls. Our room was lovely with plenty of storage space. With a ship this size we were able to go to areas that the big cruise ships could not. As a matter of fact the only time we even saw one of the bigger cruise ships was in the port at Juneau. The single most impactful aspect of the trip? The people - the naturalists, photographers and staff. They were such a pleasure to be around because they exuded enthusiasm about what they were doing and where they were, and they wanted to share it with you. I am an early riser and that was accommodated by coffee and light fare at around 6:30, and a yoga/stretch class at 7:00. I made one class but kept getting distracted by happenings on the bow - and no matter how early I was up, there was already a Naturalist out on the bow looking for wildlife! Our excursions were varied and always entertaining, active and educational. There were hikes geared to various levels from exploring tide pools at low tide to bushwhacking (well, we didn’t really whack any bush) through the rainforest, and climbing to a WW II military gun emplacement. Some people wanted a quicker pace, so they organized aerobic hikes as well. There were kayak opportunities and zodiac explorations to find wildlife and get up close to impressive icebergs and to the base of an immense glacier. The smaller ship size and the open seating at meals allowed us to meet and get to know a lot of our fellow passengers. They were all like minded travelers that included several individuals who traveled by themselves. Everyone took those singles under their wings and made sure they felt a part of everything. It was that kind of group. There were various sizes of tables and if you sat at one of the larger tables, you might have the pleasure of having one of the naturalists or photographers join you, and they always had great stories to tell. On two occasions, a Nat Geo photographer and a Naturalist donned scuba gear and dove the frigid waters with underwater camera equipment. Then that evening we would see their video production of what was going on underneath our boat. That was a real treat and quite a surprise to see all the marine life and beauty below. Cocktail hour in the lounge was at 6:00 and at 6:30 there would be a recap of the day and presentations by naturalists and photographers. These were often interrupted by the appearance of Humpback Whales breaching off the bow or an Orca mama bringing her calf to see the people. I always had my camera with me. And the food! I expected it to be good but was impressed with the gourmet fare and the presentation. There would always be an option for meat, fish or vegan fare. And no matter if it was a table for 4 or 10, they managed to have all courses delivered at the same time. I looked at the types of cruises listed below to check as applicable (Luxury, Gourmet, Entertainment, Family, Singles, etc.) but did not see one for “Adventure!” So this cruise was all those things plus the adventure!! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
We chose this cruise for our family of 10. Ages were 9,11,15,18, 47,47,48,49,74 &75. The cabins were compact, but very workable. Because our cabins were all in a line we could find each other and the younger ones could be with their ... Read More
We chose this cruise for our family of 10. Ages were 9,11,15,18, 47,47,48,49,74 &75. The cabins were compact, but very workable. Because our cabins were all in a line we could find each other and the younger ones could be with their parents or not. Meals, snacks and service was exceptional. I asked each member to tell me the three things they liked best and the 9 year old listed breakfast as one of them.The picky eaters were catered to and there was a large variety for the non picky adults. When it came to what people liked best it was all across the board of shore excursions, kayaking, walking, flight seeing,floating the Chilkat and the DIBs rides. I personally liked the information from the wildlife talks. It was a bonding experience for our family in a comfortable, exciting, beautiful venue which is why we booked it. We would highly recommend it. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
The NatGeo Lindblad Wild Alaska cruise on the Sea Bird (May 19th embarkation from Sitka) was incredible! We cannot say enough good things about the staff, crew and naturalists who made our 6-day cruise exceptional. In addition, our little ... Read More
The NatGeo Lindblad Wild Alaska cruise on the Sea Bird (May 19th embarkation from Sitka) was incredible! We cannot say enough good things about the staff, crew and naturalists who made our 6-day cruise exceptional. In addition, our little Sea Bird made it possible to get up close and personal to some of the Alaskan inlets and passages that the larger cruise ships cannot (or SHOULD not). [I'll be writing another review to lambaste the "Disney Wonder" monstrosity that barreled through Endicott Arm at 7 knots on its way to Dawes Glacier. It was not allowed to be there AND ignored the speed limit in order to block our view of the glacier.] From the moment we were greeted by the captain and crew at Sitka to disembarkation in Juneau six days later, we were treated like royalty, yet the atmosphere was wonderfully casual and down to earth. We were informed of upcoming talks by the naturalists, expedition choices each day, wild life sightings, wellness/exercise classes and photography workshops. The meals were outstanding and featured local cuisine with locally grown produce and sustainably caught seafood. We were transported by zodiaks (sturdy inflatable rubber boats like the ones Jacques Cousteau used) to remote shorelines where we could continue on by foot on hikes, kayak around the inlets, or hop on a stand-up paddle board! No one fell in! In Haines, Alaska we visited the Klukwan Heritage Center and floated down the Chilkat River, learning about this tribe and the wildlife that lives there. At the end of the trip, we were treated to a wonderful video compiled by the ship's rockin' videographer and we each received our own copy of the video to take home. Our photography expert also compiled our guest photos which we submitted before dinner, and got to see after dinner (when did HE eat dinner?). We came away with wonderful new friends and an appreciation for the indigenous people of southeast Alaska. THANK YOU LINDBLAD and NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC for giving us the trip of a life time! We would definitely go again! And remember, do NOT sign up for a "Disney Wonder" cruise - EVER! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
I researched Alaska & what I wanted to see and do. I looked at land trips, cruise ships & other smaller ships. I went with the National Geographic Seabird for the itinerary, the educational aspect & the companies care for the ... Read More
I researched Alaska & what I wanted to see and do. I looked at land trips, cruise ships & other smaller ships. I went with the National Geographic Seabird for the itinerary, the educational aspect & the companies care for the environments that they visit. The very first evening the Captain and the staff made it clear that this was going to be an adventure! That the itinerary could change depending upon what we come across, such as whales, or what the weather does. The crew & staff took things to the next level. They were all interactive and personable. They all took the time to add value for each and every passenger. The food on board was exceptional! The activities varied and extensive! The ports were all different so we felt as if we saw a very good cross section of Alaska! The ship was very well outfitted & very comfortable! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
We have nothing but wonderful things to say about this trip. It was like being in a luxury resort for a week, except the scenery came to you. We spent most of our time on deck or off the shop on outings. We were off the boat almost every ... Read More
We have nothing but wonderful things to say about this trip. It was like being in a luxury resort for a week, except the scenery came to you. We spent most of our time on deck or off the shop on outings. We were off the boat almost every day for hiking, kayaking, watching bears fish for salmon. The crew and staff were incredibly accommodating, taking care of everyone's needs to the absolute best of their ability. The five naturalists were always available, searching for wild life, leading expeditions, handing out photography advice. The food was lovely, always snacks and drinks available. Read Less
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