Black Book – Crystal’s Northwest Passage

The Northwest Passage ranks on many adventure travelers’ bucket lists, but now it will be done in a way like never before. With Crystal Cruises’ new Northwest Passage itinerary, visitors no longer have to rough it on an expedition ship but can explore the destination on a luxury cruise instead. Embarking on its maiden voyage in August, the Crystal cruise allows those of us who can’t live without our creature comforts to experience this amazing journey with all the frills of luxury travel.

From fascinating speakers to top-rate entertainment and five-star dining, Crystal Serenity offers guests the incredible service and amenities Crystal guests have come to expect, this time on a 32-day cruise to experience the Northwest Passage first-hand. Beginning in Anchorage and ending in New York City, the cruise takes guests on the historical sea route, made up of a series of waterways north of the Arctic Circle that link the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. From Greenland through the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and onwards into the Beaufort Sea, explored as a shorter trade route between Europe and Asia, guests will have the chance to navigate around Alaska and beyond, witnessing majestic landscapes, spectacular glaciers and towering fjords in the Land of the Midnight Sun.

For the journey, Crystal has hired a 14-member expedition team of naturalists, explorers, scientists, historians and photographers to offer guidance onshore and enrichment onboard, such as lectures, seminars and workshops. Days at sea will be balanced with scheduled ports of call and shore excursions, and there will also be surprise expedition days guests can sign up for, from rare wildlife sightings (think whales, polar bears and Caribou) to exciting arctic adventures, such as Zodiac cruises, kayaking in scenic coves and trekking with a professional guide.

As Tully cruise specialist Gerri Grant points out, this kind of itinerary is not normally done with a passenger vessel of this size and caliber, making it a one-of-a-kind experience. “It’s the first time I’ve seen anything like this. While expedition ships do it every year, no one has ever done it on a luxury liner before. Crystal wanted to offer their guests something unique, so they’ve chartered the RRS Ernest Shackleton which will escort the Crystal Serenity through the Northwest Passage. The RRS Ernest Shackleton will provide operational support, including ice breaking assistance should the need arise, and carry additional safety and adventure equipment. “This is something different and cruisers can still have their luxury and feel comfortable in their environment,” says Grant, who shares that there are a few spots left for the August 2016 departure, and is now currently booking customers for the 2017 voyage.

Extreme adventure in the lap of luxury? Sounds like the ultimate journey to us. For more information on the Northwest Passage, contact Tully Luxury Travel today!

– The Tully Travel

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