Custom Alaska Cruises and MV Sikumi are proud to announce our third annual “Donation Month” for 2017 and 2018.
During the month of March, Custom Alaska Cruises will donate 5% of the purchase price of any standard cruise booked for the 2017 or 2018 season aboard the small luxury vessel, MV Sikumi, to the Alaska Conservation and its Sportsman’s alliance for Alaska initiative.
We, the owners of MV Sikumi, believe it is our duty to give back where we can, and through this you can feel good as well knowing your trip to Alaska helped support local conservation efforts.
If you’ve been thinking about a trip aboard the MV Sikumi, there is no better time than now and there is no better way to know your money went to help a great cause. Book your Alaska cruise today!
The Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska is setup to protect Alaska and it’s conservation efforts. These conservation efforts include the Bristol Bay region, Tongass National Forest and Teshekpuk Lake.
One of the most notable conservation efforts going on today is located in the Bristol Bay region of Alaska. Over the past 10 years, the Bristol Bay area has been targeted for a massive mining proposal. A Canadian mining company (Northern Dynasty Minerals) acquired 100% ownership in the mining rights to the area in 2005. Northern Dynasty Minerals want to develop the worlds largest open pit mine known as the Pebble mine.
The effects of the Pebble Mine are said to destroy a $1.5 Billion annual commercial salmon fishing industry due to the mine’s location upriver.
As this is just one of the many conservation efforts that the Alaska Conservation Foundation has in place to protect Alaska, your cruise with Custom Alaska Cruises will great help conservation in Alaska.
When is the best time to cruise Alaska?
The best time to cruise Alaska’s Inside Passage is between May and September when daytime temperatures are in the mid 60’s and the rainfall is under 3.5″ per month.
This may surprise you…
The months with the lowest average rainfall are May and June! So booking a cruise in May or June will give you the least rainy days on average.
Enhance your cruise by doing this:
You can enhance your Alaska cruise experience if you choose the best cruising time based upon what you want from your vacation. Each month that you cruise Alaska will have different highlights that you can’t miss.
View our incredible images of our cruises through the Inside Passage here.
Escape the heat of the Lower 48 on a cruise aboard the Sikumi for a cruise through Alaska’s Inside Passage.
The average temperatures throughout the cruising season remain mild and pleasant in the 60s in Southeast Alaska. And with these mild and warm temperatures, wildlife flourishes, and the Alaskan landscape is alive with lush green foliage and colorful wildflowers.
Alaska is a place of incredible beauty and gorgeous weather during the month of May. There are infinite reasons to take an Alaskan cruise in May, including active wildlife, blooming wildflowers, and the peace and quiet of traveling before peak tourist season.
Bear sightings are nearly inevitable during May.
With Alaskan black and brown bears having awakened from their winter slumber, they are active and hunting food near shore since salmon aren’t yet running in the streams and rivers.
May is also when the first Alaskan wildflowers begin blooming for the summer, and migratory birds are heading in, flocking to bodies of water to settle in.
And with 18 to 20 hours of daylight, there is plenty of opportunity for enjoying all there is to see, whether you are on board the Sikumi, cruising around in a kayak, or hiking a less traveled trail.
Not only is there lots of daylight to enjoy, but May generally brings less precipitation and more sunshine to Southeast Alaska (and the Inside Passage) than other months, and the daily temperature is warming up for summer as well.
With Alaska’s peak travel season not yet underway, enjoy the peace and tranquility that comes with one of the wildest and most beautiful places on the planet.
May Cruise Testimonials
“The comment card just didn’t have enough room to express our thanks or comments about this trip of a lifetime!“
“We can’t wait to tell everyone about this trip in the hopes they will come and have such a glorious experience as we did.”
Of the few warm summer months in Alaska, June has the longest days all year, with summer solstice falling on the 20th. Southeast Alaska experiences daylight nearly around the clock in June, making it a good time to see everything there is to see on an Alaskan cruise.
Wildlife is visibly abundant, with whales making their journey back into Alaskan waters from Hawaii. There is a heavy concentration of humpback whales in Southeast Alaskan waters during the summer months, and it is not uncommon to see them feeding with their young.
There are also grey whales, orcas, Dall porpoise, seals, sea lions and sea otters inhabiting the area where the Sikumi cruises. And look ashore for black and brown bears who are in full swing for summer, hunting and fishing for food.
June brings wildflowers, lush green forest and mild temperatures to Southeast Alaska, making it a perfect time to explore. Because of the Sikumi’s size, guests are awarded the opportunity to get off the boat and hike and kayak around to get a closer look at what Alaska is all about.
Summer solstice is an exciting time all over Alaska, so make plans to visit a town or festival before or after your custom Alaska cruise on the Sikumi.
June Cruise Testimonial
“Our adventure was close to its end… I could feel the nostalgia growing inside me. I would miss this boat and her crew. Our once-in-a-lifetime experience was their routine, and I couldn’t help but envy them.”
The month of July is a great time to enjoy the many things that the Alaskan wilderness has to offer. The sunny days and amazing wildlife activity make July cruises very special indeed.
What better way to celebrate July 4th than to be aboard the Sikumi experiencing all the beauty Southeast Alaska has to offer.
July, being the heart of summer, brings long daylight hours and nice temperatures to Alaska.
The heart of summer in Southeast Alaska brings with it lush green landscape and active wildlife. July is perhaps the sunniest month of the Alaskan calendar. No other single month holds as many long and sunny days as July. In addition, rain seems to fall with less frequency and in smaller amounts during July.
Whales have already made their return trip to Alaska from Hawaii by this time, providing a spectacle for passengers.
Frederick Sound is a favorite spot to visit this time of year, as thousands of whales can be observed bubble net feeding with their babies. Brown and black bears are out and about hunting and fishing for salmon in the streams and rivers of Alaska.
Wildlife is not the only active part of Alaska in July. Alaska’s glaciers are actually active and alive year-round. But the warmer temperatures of July cause the glaciers to calve and tumble into the sea, which is a powerful and extraordinary force to witness.
Watch this video from the deck of the M/V Sikumi.
We will take you as close as humanly possible to these glaciers, so you can see firsthand just how massive the bergs are. Because of the high temperatures, the waters are generally free of debris, allowing some of the closest iceberg viewing of the year.
All the things you envision Alaska Cruising to be about; blooming, colorful wildflowers, lush, majestic mountains and active glaciers and wildlife, are yours to experience during the month of July aboard the Sikumi.
Our July cruises are some of the crew’s favorites. The long July days bring a welcome reprieve after the cold and dark winter. We’d love to bring you aboard for one of this years July cruises.
August is a great time to visit the far north and indulge in a luxury Alaskan cruise. It is still warm, the days are long, all of the whales and migratory birds have yet to head south for the winter, and all of the businesses that cater to tourists have gotten all of their early season hiccups out of the way.
Whales and bears alike are feeding before the long winter takes hold once again. A dense population of humpbacks feeds in the waters of Southeast Alaska preparing for their journey back to Hawaiian waters. Bears are fattening up for their long, winter hibernation, and migratory birds prepare to head South.
Alaska is alive with activity in August, and the warm, summer days of Southeast Alaska cause the landscape to move and change.
Experience the powerful and incredible force of calving glaciers and moving icebergs. And there is still plenty of daylight in August to experience all you can take in aboard the Sikumi.
It can rain more in August than in other months, but it can be beautiful as well.
Alaska is a fickle state, and the weather can be unpredictable – clouds and rain one day and warm, clear skies the next.
August also has another reward; since the season peaks on August 15, if you come after that, you will see Alaska without all of the intense summer crowds.
No matter the date, we can guarantee that once you step aboard the Sikumi, your trip will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience, out and away from it all in the Alaskan wilderness.
Treat yourself to a custom Alaska cruise this fall after the kids go back to school. September in Southeast Alaska is when autumn starts to sink in, and just like any other season in Alaska, there are countless reasons to plan a vacation around this time.
Peak tourist season is over by September, so Alaska will once again be quiet as everyone prepares for another long, white winter, including the wildlife.
Black and brown bears will be stuffing themselves in preparation for winter hibernation and migratory birds will be preparing for a long flight south, while other animals are ready to hang in there for the Alaskan winter.
Bald eagles can be seen flying above or sitting in trees despite the season. Sea otters, sea lions, orcas and Dall porpoise aren’t picky about the weather either.
Alaska experiences some beautiful fall foliage in September, as well. The mountainsides turn beautiful shades of gold and yellow, and the mountains begin to collect snow on their peaks.
As the nights grow darker and longer, there is a very good chance to catch the awe inspiring Aurora Borealis, Alaska’s northern lights. Imagine cruising aboard the Sikumi and looking into the night sky to see dancing curtains and swirls of light.
September is a magical time to visit Southeast Alaska.read more
There are nine different types of whales in Alaska. The Beluga, Blue, Bowhead, Bottlenose, Gray, Humpback, Orca, Minke and Sperm. The most common whales that you will see whale watching in Alaska are the Orca and humpback whales.
Beluga whales are the easy to identify as they are pure white and quite a bit smaller than other types of whales in Alaska.
Beluga whales can also be easily identified because they do not have a dorsal fin and have a larger round head and forehead. Their forehead is soft and non-bony..
A really unique feature of these whales is that several of their neck vertebrae are not fused, which allows the Beluga to turn its head without turning its body. This gives them an incredible advantage for visibility and movement when they are swimming. This is gives them an incredible advantage from predators like sharks and polar bears.
Beluga whales are also quite a bit smaller and are comparable in size to dolphins. View the image below to see the difference between a dolphin and beluga whale:
Beluga Whales have a life expectancy of around 30 years and will reach their full size at around 10 years old.
Beluga Whale Sizes:
Beluga Whales eat marine species that are most common depending on the season and location. They feed on salmon, shrimp, whitefish, cod, mussels and more.
Range of location:
Beluga whales inhabit the range from Russia to Alaska and down to Canada. And also from Canada up to Greenland and Norway. You can view Beluga whales in the following locations in Alaska: Cook Inlet, Bristol Bay, eastern Bering Sea, eastern Chukchi Sea and Beaufort Sea.
Check out this incredible video of a Beluga Whale teasing a couple kids at the museum. I couldn’t help but share it 🙂
Grey whales are one of the most unsung marine mammals of Alaska’s Inside Passage. These barnacle-covered beauties are not hidden from view because they are small – they are the size of a school bus – but because of their feeding habits are much less frequently seen than their counterparts like the humpback or orca are. Grey Whales like to move along the bottom of the ocean floor and suck up sand and silt filled with krill, plankton, and other tiny organisms.
Instead of teeth, they have big sieve-like plates known as Baleen. Grey whales take immense gulps off water, silt and plankton off the ocean floor and then push out the excess water and sand leaving only the tasty plankton behind. They head north from Mexico every year because they know that Alaska has exceptionally nutrient-rich water.
Minke whales have the biggest population of any whale species, so you may be wondering why they are so elusive. These sleek, dark-colored whales are smaller than a humpback, but bigger than an orca, and can swim at speeds up to 20 miles an hour. They also have a smaller blowhole and spout, and can submerge faster than many other species. Because of their large numbers, Minke whales are still hunted in the waters of Japan and Norway.
However, Minke whales frequent the waters of the Inside Passage, and their curious nature often draws them to inspect and play near cruise ships. Ask our naturalist during your next private Alaska yacht charter and maybe you too will spot one of these elusive whales.
Who, what (whale watching), when, where,
Link to whale watching page –
On the Sikumi, Grey Whale watching is another reason why you should book your next cruise with us. View our Whale Watching Exursion here.read more
You want to pack the basics of what you NEED for a cruise so you will be comfortable on your vacation; so you pack for every possible scenario. This ultimately leads to over packing.
What you need is a plan. A simple blueprint to help you pack for your cruise to keep from over packing.
To walk you through this we have put together 8 tips to optimize your cruise packing list today.
Ultimately, we’re giving you The Anatomy of a Perfectly Optimized Suitcase.
If you are planning for your first-time cruise or you cruise so much you think you should steer the ship, these resources will help get your cruise off on the right foot.
Planning a cruise with a little research will not only help you to be stress free prior to your cruise, but also show you how to be laser specific when packing.
Now that you have an itinerary of what you are doing on your cruise and what the climate will be like, now is the time to really have some fun.
Choosing which electronics to bring on a cruise is one of the most popular topics when packing for a cruise. This is where we can use technology to really help us save some space in our luggage!
Before we could even start getting into what to pack for a cruise, we mentioned planning for a cruise and the best electronics for a cruise.
Those chapters sets the stage for what we should pack by allowing us to know more about our cruise ship, climate, excursions, port activities and what devices will allow us to have a better cruising experience.
By gathering that much needed information, it will help us form The Perfectly Optimized Suitcase.
Hang on one second! Packing for an Alaska cruise is quite a bit different than packing for a Caribbean cruise.
Alaska is one of the last adventurous raw locations on earth. With its ever-changing climate, breathtaking views and wildlife, you are sure to have an unforgettable experience. But before you book your Alaska small ship cruise, check out these Alaska travel tips.
As the average temperatures ranges from 48 degrees to 67 degrees May through September. Alaska is the cruising destination that will have you kneeling on your suitcase in order to close it. Read more on the best time to go on a cruise in Alaska.
If you are traveling to Alaska from outside the United States, here are the Visa and Passport requirements to read before you go.
There are few places on earth that are as pristine as the Caribbean. The turquoise water, warm weather and local cultures make going on a Caribbean Cruise a must for every family type. As you can travel to the Caribbean year round, here is a great article on the best time to travel to the Caribbean.
No matter what time of year you decide to go on a cruise through the Caribbean, this is the ultimate trip where you can PACK ULTRALIGHT!
Ok, maybe your suitcase won’t be this small, but you get the idea 🙂
But before you start packing for your trip, take a look at this Caribbean Travel Guide to give you insight as to what to expect when you travel.
If by the off chance you are overzealous and have reached this page because you want to know what to pack but haven’t selected a cruise ship yet, here are 20 Best Caribbean Cruises. I know you want to know what to pack for a cruise, but don’t forget to book a cruise too 🙂
Don’t get stressed out with everything that you have to plan and pack for your cruise.
This cruise packing list for women is designed to keep you from agonizing over every little piece so that you can get the most out of everything you pack.
Men have it easy when packing for a cruise!
Because quite a bit of your outfits, yep I said “outfits”, in a man’s suitcase are incredibly versatile and suitable for just about every activity. Think about it, one pair of khakis shorts can be worn on excursions as well as for semi-formal nights.
This will help to remove the “Do I have everything” feeling before you leave.
Putting together a cruise packing list for kids can be very tough.
You don’t need to worry. We’ve taken the stress out of trying to decide what to pack for your kids in our cruise packing list. The following packing list is for every age range that your kids may be in, whether they are a infant, toddler, preschooler, middle schooler or teenager.
Obviously you can’t pack everything you need / want, so be sure to Google: “Your Cruise Ship” + rental, to find a list of what’s available to make your cruising experience better.
Maybe you are going on a cruise with your teenage friends, here is a teenage packing list you can email them to bring.
Before checking out this section, you should check out our cruise packing list chapter on best electronics for cruises. In that guide we go over the incredible benefits of tablets and other electronics that make cruising with kids more pleasurable
The Misty Fiords National Monument was created in 1978 to preserve the remote and pristine coastal rain forest in which it is located.
The Misty Fiords National Monument consists of almost 2.5 million acres and receives an average of over 120 inches of annual percepitation. Ketchikan fly fishing is a popular recreational activity, along with birding, hiking, hunting, fishing, and kayaking. Southeastexposure is a Ketchikan based company offering guided kayaking trips.
Contact Us with questions or for information on booking your Alaskan adventure cruise to the Misty Fiords National Monument today!read more
Located within Tongass National Forest, Admirality Island consists of over a million acres of lakes, streams, meadows, and coastal rain forests. The island is located within Alaska’s Inside Passage can be reached by floatplane from either Juneau or Sitka and by an Alaskan small ship cruise. The island exhibits many different kinds of wildlife from Alaskan brown bears to bald eagles. Bird species that inhabit the area include geese from Canada and trumpeter swans. Sea lions, whales, and harbor seals also make homes on and around the island.
For information on booking a trip to Admirality Island fishing Island, Contact Us today.read more