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Small Ship in Glacial Waters

By Michael Shapiro

Looking down on Juneau from atop Mount Roberts, I see two megaships, each the length of three football fields with room for thousands of passengers. Floating next to them, looking like a bathtub toy, is my home for the next seven nights, the Safari Endeavour, a boat that holds a maximum of 84 guests.

The Endeavour is part of the Un-Cruise line of small ships that offer adventures while cruising, including stand-up paddle boarding, glacier hiking and kayaking among humpback whales. Because our boat is compact, it can navigate inlets and fjords the big ships can't reach. The Endeavour doesn't dock at ports; instead we'll anchor at sea and watch, ideally from the hot tub with a cool pint of Alaskan Summer Ale, as the sun sets over distant mountains in a glorious blaze of colors