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You can sail from Vancouver on an ultra-luxury cruise to Japan that visits Alaska

From glaciers to the lights of Tokyo.

Vancouverites can cruise through Alaska and cross the Pacific to the Land of the Rising Sun on a luxury vessel for a steal.

If you associate ocean cruises with huge crowds, boisterous guests, and massive ships, this cruise line may sound like a luxurious breath of fresh air. Not only is their guest capacity significantly lower — try 596 passengers rather than 1,500 to 6,000 on medium and large ocean liners — but their guest-to-crew ratio is also much lower.

For those 596 passengers, there are roughly 408 crew members on board. This means guests are afforded the highest, most attentive level of service, with the crew anticipating their every need. 

The 23-night sailing on the Silver Muse departs from Canada Place on Sept. 2 before sailing up the inside passage to Ketchikan, Alaska. The cruise will make a stop in Endicott Arm before overnighting in Juneau on Sept. 5. 

The next Alaskan stops on the voyage include Sitka, Icy Strait Point and Haines before it spends some time cruising past the awe-inspiring Hubbard Glacier. The cruise will also stop in Valdez, Anchorage, Kodiak and Dutch Harbour before crossing the Pacific on Sept. 16. 

Guests will spend six days at sea crossing the ocean — and the International Dateline — before arriving in Kushiro, Japan on Sept. 22. The ship will then stop in Hakodate and Miyako before it disembarks guests in Tokyo on Sept. 26.

Date Port Arrive Depart
Monday, September 2 Vancouver, B.C., Canada   7:00 p.m.
Tuesday, September 3 Inside Passage, AK (Cruising)    
Wednesday, September 4 Ketchikan, AK 8:00 a.m. 5:00 p.m.
Thursday, September 5 Endicott Arm, AK 10:30 a.m. 4:00 p.m.
Thursday, September 5 Juneau, AK 8:00 p.m.  
Friday, September 6 Juneau, AK   6:00 p.m.
Saturday, September 7 Sitka, AK 9:00 a.m. 6:00 p.m.
Sunday, September 8 Icy Strait Point, AK 8:00 a.m. 6:00 p.m.
Monday, September 9 Haines, AK 7:00 a.m. 3:00 p.m.
Tuesday, September 10 Hubbard Glacier, AK (Cruising)    
Wednesday, September 11 Valdez, AK 9:00 a.m. 6:00 p.m.
Thursday, September 12 Anchorage (Seward), AK 7:00 a.m. 7:00 p.m.
Friday, September 13 Kodiak, AK 9:00 a.m. 3:00 p.m.
Saturday, September 14 At Sea    
Sunday, September 15 Dutch Harbour, AK 8:00 a.m. 2:00 p.m.
Monday, September 16 At Sea    
Tuesday, September 17 At Sea    
Wednesday, September 18 Crossing International Dateline (Cruising)    
Thursday, September 19 At Sea    
Friday, September 20 At Sea    
Saturday, September 21 At Sea    
Sunday, September 22 Kushiro, Japan 7:00 a.m. 6:00 p.m.
Monday, September 23 Hakodate, Japan 8:30 a.m. 6:00 p.m.
Tuesday, September 24 Miyako, Japan 8:00 a.m. 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, September 25 At Sea    
Thursday, September 26 Tokyo (Koto City), Japan 7:00 a.m.

Vancouver cruise: Silversea Cruises experience 

Headquartered in Monaco, Silversea Cruises offers all-inclusive luxury cruising experiences. Guests enjoy 24-hour room service, open dining at an array of restaurants, and beverages in their cabin and throughout the ship. This includes champagne, selected wines, and premium spirits, too. 

To complete the pampered cruising experience, each guest has a personal butler on board. 

In addition to a low guest-to-crew ratio, the ship for this itinerary, the Silver Muse, boasts the most dining options of any luxury ship. This means you'll have a wide range of dining options and won't sacrifice gourmet quality. There is a jogging track, fitness centre, swimming pool, showroom, dancing area, casino, and five bars/lounges.

Prices for a Superior Veranda Suite start at $34,400 or $17,200 per person. The price includes all of your meals and premium alcohol, entertainment, luxury accommodation, transportation, and butler service for the entirety of the cruise.

For comparison's sake, a one-night stay at a luxury hotel generally costs more — and that's without any food, entertainment, butler service, or alcohol. 

Guests can also pay a couple thousand more for the "door-to-door" all-inclusive package, covering travel from their homes to when they return from the trip. They include tickets in economy class seats, transfers to the ship, and more.

Travellers generally want to spend a few nights in Tokyo at the end of their cruise. Thankfully, flights back from the Japanese capital are a steal thanks to Zipair's ultra-low-cost direct option from Narita. Tickets start at under $400, including all taxes and fees on several dates at the end of the month (see slide four).