National Geographic Quest will have 50 cabins, 22 with balconies, and eight that can be configured into four adjoining cabins for families. All Category 5 cabins can accommodate three people.
The ship will be outfitted 24 sea kayaks, paddle boards, snorkeling equipment and Zodiacs, the latest expedition technology, including a remotely operated vehicle, video microscope and a hydrophone and bow-cam designed for immediate bow deployment to hear and film, for instance, humpback whale vocalizations and see bow-riding dolphins.
The first voyage will be the 13-day 'Treasures of the Inside Passage: Alaska & British Columbia.' This expedition will spend a day in the San Juan Islands and a day in the Gulf Islands before heading north through BC and Alaska. Fares start at $9,390 per person, double occupancy.
National Geographic Quest will then operate 'Exploring Alaska’s Coastal Wilderness' on a Saturday to Saturday schedule July 8 through Aug. 26. Fares start at $6,590. The ship will finish the Alaska season with a 'Treasures of the Inside Passage: Alaska and British Columbia' departure on Sept. 2, 2017.
National Geographic Quest will remain in the Pacific Northwest for a series of new cruises between Seattle and Vancouver, with stops at the San Juan Islands, Victoria, Alert Bay and more far-reaching stops in BC's channels and fjords.
Beginning in December 2017, National Geographic Quest will reposition and operate voyages in Costa Rica and Panama before kicking off a series of new sailings in Belize and Guatemala starting in February 2018.
With the addition of the ship, Lindblad created new programming for its 62-passenger National Geographic Sea Bird.
'Wild Alaska Escape,' the most active adventure offered by Lindblad, offers six days in wild, pristine Alaska with the opportunity to engage in some challenging activities. Passengers will visit the Chilkat Tlingit village of Klukwan and, in Haines, the activities include a three-hour bicycling trip around a stunning glacial lake; half-day hikes up a few of the region’s most dramatic mountains and, for the most fit, a trek up Mount Riley. Or, passengers can float down the Chilkat River through an area rich with native tradition and the world's largest congregation of bald eagles.
In the more remote stretches of the voyage, there will be guided, point-to-point kayak trips with the ship as a moving basecamp. Or, passengers can head out in expedition landing craft to zip around icebergs or land on remote beaches for hikes in dense and dramatic Tongass National Forest. Rates begin at $4,290 per person. Twelve departures are offered, May 27 through Aug. 30, 2017.
'Big Picture Alaska' is an 11-day expedition spanning the full north-south expanse of the Inside Passage with a special focus on photography. The trip expands Lindblad’s popular week-long expedition, adding Mistry Fiords at the lowest reaches of Alaska’s Inside Passage and Haines in the northernmost corner.
Passengers will be able to raft though the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve, explore Glacier Bay National Park, search for humpback whales with time in Clarence Strait, a popular feeding area, kayak amid glacial ice, hike the Tongass National Forest and learn about the region’s Tlingit heritage. All this while shooting with the expertise of Lindblad-National Geographic-certified photo instructors and National Geographic photographers.
Rates begin at $8,990, and four departures, June 16 through Aug. 5.