By James Shillinglaw, Feb 12, 2020, Shared from Insider Travel Report

Victory Cruise Lines (VCL), operated by American Queen Steamboat Company, a Hornblower Families Company, announced its inaugural itineraries for the 2021 season onboard the 200-guest Ocean Victory. Currently under construction, VCL’s third vessel will allow guests to explore the scenery and wildlife of Alaska and British Columbia on expert-led excursions on a small ship.

To ensure that the Ocean Victory showcases the very best of expedition cruising, VCL is working with California Polytechnic State University to include marine biologists, scientists and naturalists among its 19-member expedition team, which will lead excursions, offer lectures and act as a resource for all guests. Highlights from the new Discover Beyond  Alaska Expedition Adventure Cruise itineraries on Victory Cruise Lines include.

Northbound: This 12-day cruise from Vancouver, B.C to Sitka, Alaska departs May 21; June 11; July 2, 23; Aug. 13; Sept. 3. From Vancouver to the stunning views along the British Columbia Inside Passage, guests will experience the best of this varied region. Guests will see Fiordland Conservancy’s dramatic waterfalls dropping into majestic fjords, wildlife sightings in Misty Fjords National Monument, ice fields at LeConte, Sawyer and Dawes Glaciers; and world-famous whale watching in Frederick Sound. In addition, they will experience the culture of the Tsmshian people, Norwegian-inspired Petersburg, Alaska, and Russian-influenced Sitka, Alaska. Ports of call include: a pre-cruise hotel in Vancouver, B.C.; British Columbia Inside Passage; Fiordland (Kynoch Inlet); Ketchikan/Metlakatla; Misty Fjords National Monument; Wrangell/Stikine River Wilderness; Waterfall Coast/Baraof Wilderness; Petersburg/Le Conte Glacier; Tracey Arm/Sawyer Glacier; Kake/Frederick Sound/Five Finger; and Sitka, Alaska. Fares start at $4,199 per person double, plus port fees, taxes and gratuities.

Southbound: This 13-day cruise from Sitka, Alaska to Vancouver, B.C. departs May 31; June 21; July 12; Aug. 2, 23; Sept. 13. The southbound itinerary reverses the northbound itinerary, with an additional day exploring Tracey Arm, Endicott, Dawes and Sawyer Glacier and Ford’s Terror Wilderness. On all Ocean Victory sailings 20 Zodiacs and dozens of kayaks will transport guests through narrow inlets larger ships cannot access. Expedition leaders have the flexibility to choose the best spots for the day’s adventure, setting the Alaska adventures on the Ocean Victory apart from competition. Ports of call include: a pre-cruise hotel in Sitka, Alaska; Kake/Frederick Sound/Five Finger; Endicott Arm/Ford’s Terror/Dawes Glacier; Tracey Arm/Sawyer Glacier; Petersburg/LeConte Glacier; Waterfall Coast/Baranof Wilderness; Misty Fjords National Monument; Ketchikan/Metlakatla; Fiordland (Kynoch Inlet); British Columbia Inside Passage and Vancouver, B.C. Fares start at $4,999 per person double, plus port fees, taxes and gratuities.

Hidden Coast: This 12-day cruise from Vancouver, B.C. to Seattle, Wash., departs Sept. 24. This one-time itinerary will explore the ports and sights along Vancouver Island. Keeping with VCL’s dedication to education, guests will visit the Copeland Island Marine Park and U’Mista Cultural Center, one of the longest operating First Nations’ cultural facilities in British Columbia. On the southbound leg, they will get striking views of Cortes Island, Von Donop Inlet and Desolation Sound. Ports of call include: a pre-cruise hotel in Vancouver, B.C.; Princess Royal Reach/Princess Louisa Inlet; Copeland Islands Marine Park; Alert Bay/U’Mista Cultural Center; Cortes Island/Von Donop Inlet; Desolation Sound – Redonda Islands; “Sunshine Coast” – Pender Harbour; Nanaimo; Gulf Islands/Ganges; Victoria and Seattle, W.A. Fares start at $4,199 per person double, plus port fees, taxes and gratuities.

Ocean Victory will feature 93 suites, of which 68 will have balconies, nine with French balconies and 16 with panoramic windows. The vessel will carry a crew of 100 with a 2-to-1 guest to crew ratio. Onboard venues include two restaurants, an open-deck dining area, piano bar, library, gym, heated outdoor pool, spa services and Jacuzzi, plus observation and lecture lounges, and a dedicated expedition and adventures launching platform. Bookings for Ocean Victory Alaska cruises are now open, with early booking savings up to $1,400 per stateroom on reservations made by March 31, 2020. For more information, visit