On April 23, one of the most luxurious cruise ships in the world will make a day-long stop in Unalaska.
It's the Crystal Serenity, and later this summer the $400 million dollar ship will make history by sailing from Anchorage to New York City through the Northwest Passage. Last week the cruise ship company announced its ship would be accompanied on that August trip by a British icebreaker called the RRS Ernest Shackleton.
But it's too early in the season to make that formidable journey.
Many of the passengers who will disembark in Unalaska this weekend left San Francisco on Jan. 24 for a round the Pacific Rim trip. The ship sailed west, visiting Hawaii, Australia, Indonesia, Southeast Asia, China, Japan, Russia and points in between. This week the cruise ship is crossing the North Pacific from Petropavlovsk, Russia.
Some of the passengers boarded the ship in Toyko just for the 23-day ride back, a trip Crystal Cruises calls the Glacial Grandeur. The price for that portion of the trip ranges from $7 thousand to $36,000 per person.
For the whole 102-day Pacific Rim voyage, guests shelled out anywhere from $37,000 for a basic stateroom to nearly a quarter million for the crystal penthouse suite.
After visiting Unalaska, the ship will continue to Kodiak and other Alaskan ports before heading to Vancouver and the rest of the west coast. The trip ends on May 6 back in San Francisco.
The advertised shore excursion for Dutch Harbor is a complementary three and a half hour sight seeing trip. A few locals will serve as docent-guides, shuttling the guests on school buses between the Museum of the Aleutians, the WWII museum and the Holy Ascension church. Because of orthodox Palm Sunday, the church will be closed.
The ship will be carrying 1090 passengers and several hundred crew members.