Five Norwegian Cruise Ships Setting Sail in Alaska

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Norwegian Cruise Line has begun their 2024 Alaska sailing season, but which ships are visiting the Last Frontier this year, what itineraries are on offer, and what destinations can guests expect to visit?

Five of Norwegian Cruise Line’s 19 ships will be offering a variety of Alaska sailings this year, though the length and destinations vary widely. One-way and roundtrip sailings are available, and travelers have a diverse selection of ship sizes and classes to choose from.

Norwegian Bliss

Norwegian Bliss opened the cruise line’s Alaska season with a very early sailing, departing Seattle, Washington on Saturday, April 6 for the first Alaska cruise of the year. The 168,028-gross-ton, Breakaway-plus-class ship was purpose built for the Alaska market with extra viewing areas and technical features to ensure comfort and safety in the region.

This makes Norwegian Bliss uniquely suited for early- and late-season sailings in Alaska. The ship will remain sailing in the Last Frontier until the end of her last seasonal sailing on October 26, when she returns to Seattle for the last Alaska cruise debarkation of 2024 for that popular homeport.

Norwegian Bliss in Alaska
Norwegian Bliss in Alaska (Photo Credit: Melissa Mayntz / Cruise Hive)

All season long, Norwegian Bliss will be offering 7-night itineraries featuring Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan, Sitka, Icy Strait Point, and Victoria as ports of call, depending on departure date. Spectacular scenic cruising is planned for Glacier Bay or Dawes Glacier, depending on the ship’s exact route.

Norwegian Bliss can welcome 4,002 guests aboard, and is also home to approximately 1,700 international crew members.

Norwegian Jewel

The second Norwegian Cruise Line ship to set sail in Alaska this year is Norwegian Jewel, which began her season of 7-night Alaska voyages from April 22. The 93,502-gross-ton ship, lead vessel in the popular Jewel class, is offering northbound and southbound voyages between Seward, Alaska and Vancouver, British Columbia.

Along the way, the ship will be visiting Icy Strait Point, Juneau, Skagway, and Ketchikan, as well as Hubbard Glacier for scenic cruising. Depending on the itinerary, cruising in Glacier Bay may be included.

Norwegian Jewel Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: lenic / Shutterstock

At the end of the season, Norwegian Jewel will offer three Seattle departures, 9-night roundtrip sailings that also visit top Alaskan ports and offer a different departure option for travelers. The ship’s last Alaska departure of the season will leave Seattle on October 19 and will debark guests on October 28.

Read Also: What’s the Best Cruise Line for Alaska?

Norwegian Jewel can welcome 2,376 travelers aboard for each sailing when booked at double occupancy.

Norwegian Encore

Third in Norwegian Cruise Line’s 2024 Alaska fleet lineup is Norwegian Encore, which began her first sailing of the season on Sunday, April 28, departing from Seattle. The 169,145-gross-ton, Breakaway-plus ship – the largest in Norwegian Cruise Line’s fleet – is offering 7-night roundtrip sailings from Seattle through her October 6 departure, debarking her last Alaska guests on October 13.

Norwegian Encore in Alaska
Norwegian Encore in Alaska (Photo Credit: EWY Media / Shutterstock)

Similar to her fleetmates throughout the season, Norwegian Encore will be visiting Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan, and Victoria throughout the summer months, with spectacular scenic cruising in Glacier Bay.

Norwegian Encore is a sister ship to Norwegian Bliss and can host 3,998 travelers at double occupancy on each sailing.

Norwegian Sun

The fourth and last Norwegian Cruise Line ship to offer multiple Alaska itineraries in 2024 is Norwegian Sun. One of the cruise line’s oldest and smallest ships, the 78,309-gross-ton vessel will embark for her first Alaska sailing of the year on May 1.

Norwegian Sun will be sailing 9- and 10-night Alaska itineraries roundtrip from Seattle throughout the season. Depending on cruise length and sailing date, the ship will offer visits to Sitka, Juneau, Skagway, Icy Strait Point, Haines, Ketchikan, and Victoria.

Scenic cruising will also be on every itinerary, whether in Glacier Bay or near Hubbard Glacier at the north end of Disenchantment Bay.

Norwegian Sun Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: SebZet / Shutterstock

Norwegian Sun‘s last Alaska cruise from Seattle will depart on September 27 and end on October 7, after which the ship will move to Vancouver for one more departure.

Worth Reading: Norwegian Sun Hits Iceberg in Alaska

That sailing, departing October 8, is a 15-night cruise from Vancouver to Honolulu, but will visit Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, and Glacier Bay before turning south toward the Aloha State. This gives travelers a unique opportunity to visit both Alaska and Hawaii on a single cruise.

The small but versatile ship can welcome 1,976 guests at double occupancy or up to 2,400 travelers when fully booked, and is home to approximately 900 international crew members.

Norwegian Spirit – One Sailing Only

One final Norwegian ship is offering just a single cruise with destinations in Alaska in 2024. Norwegian Spirit will depart on May 8 for an 18-night one-way journey from Vancouver to Tokyo, visiting Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Icy Strait Point, and Seward before she leaves the US.

Norwegian Spirit, Missing Passenger
Norwegian Spirit Cruise Ship (Photo Credit: Macklin Holloway)

Norwegian Spirit had previously been planned to offer a full season of 7-night Alaska cruises in 2024, but the cruise line announced in May 2023 that the bulk of her sailings were cancelled.

The vessel has been chartered to a Taiwanese tour company, Lion Travel, to offer cruises around Taiwan during the summer months, visiting a variety of southeast Asia destinations in Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea on sailings of 3-9 nights.

Norwegian Spirit will remain operating in southeast Asia through April 2025, and in December 2025, will be based in Australia and New Zealand. Deployment plans for the vessel in the fall of 2025 have not yet been revealed, but she may be chartered to another company again during that time.

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