As more and more thoughtful travelers seek expedition-style trips to explore our planet’s natural wonders – from walking safaris to Arctic odysseys – we seek a local connection that does good from our trip. On North America’s northwest coast, our boutique-sized expedition cruises provide an answer.
Today, our 37-year-old company is excited to announce our 2024 scheduled sailings. From 9-day Haida Gwaii archipelago and Great Bear Rainforest trips, to 12-day odysseys off the beaten track in Alaska, to 5-day safaris in southern British Columbia, these award-winning regenerative trips are created by us, locals with a love for our coastal home.
“We know you want to get away from the heat, away from overcrowded areas,” said Maureen Gordon, co-owner of Maple Leaf Adventures. “We encourage you to look at these adventures, that can be combined with a city stay in Vancouver or Victoria, but are in a place that feels like another world.”
Smaller Than You Think!
Think “small ship” means 200 guests? Not here! Each of our Maple Leaf Adventures trips takes a maximum of 8, 12, or 24 guests to explore the rainforest, fjords, wildlife, and islands of Canada’s west coast and Alaska. This means each of you feels like a personal friend of the experts who are taking you to explore by boat – no crowd control, no ticket numbers, no line-ups.
While our guides have a trip plan and key highlights targeted, as experts, they are able to organize events to get the best from weather, tides, wildlife behavior, and special opportunities.
Crafted And Led By Locals
This is a locally grown company with a wide reputation. Our crew and guides all hold a passion for the coast they live on – even our engineer and steward have much to share with you, in addition to our trip’s naturalists, cultural guides, and expedition leaders.
We have played an active role in both the fights to protect the land and sea in the region, as well as the co-creation of a tourism economy based on conservation. As a result, you benefit from the work of scientists and other leaders involved in these big efforts with us, who now contribute to our guest program.
Special Wildlife Access
Hallmarks of such small group trips are personalized attention, trips that feel unrehearsed because each is unique, and access to special, off-limits sites to view bears or visit cultural monuments. For example, we hold an exclusive permit for bear viewing at Pack Creek in Alaska, and several other similar areas in the Great Bear Rainforest.
What’s New In 2024
Maple Leaf Adventures is a company with exploration in its genes, creating new itineraries with the best, off-the-beaten-track experiences. So you may not have heard of many of our trips, with the exception of our classic Great Bear Rainforest, Haida Gwaii, and Alaska itineraries.
In addition to obscure-sounding, now-staple adventures like sailing around the glacial refugium, beaches, and seabird colonies off northwestern Vancouver Island (an itinerary in summer called “Vancouver Island’s Wild Side”), we have added some new elements for 2024:
- BBC Planet Earth III: A chance to explore with the researchers whose work on humpback whale behaviors so fascinating, they are featured in BBC’s upcoming Planet Earth III. Conduct science, explore with the researchers, and likely witness this behavior yourself on our October Desolation Sound & Fjords of BC trip.
- Regeneration: Participate (voluntary!) in a legendary movement to remove marine debris from the wild beaches of Haida Gwaii and the Great Bear Rainforest. This addition to select trips has been driven by both guests and crew. After hearing a presentation by crew who were part of our industry-saving 2020 and 2021 marine debris expeditions, guests asked to do their part!
For all our itineraries, from wildlife to culinary adventures, see below.
The Expedition Yachts: Coastal Characters
Each of our three expedition yachts is a unique coastal character. Lovingly maintained by us and our crew, they contain coastal materials, coastal history, and the craftsmanship of coastal artisans.
- Cascadia: a 138-foot, expedition catamaran, she is a bright adventure yacht and the most upscale vessel. Designed specifically for boutique-scale tourism, with landing craft tenders for each beach access. 24 guests in 12 spacious private ensuite cabins.
- Maple Leaf: a 92-foot, classic schooner with a 119-year history on the coast of British Columbia, she is the flagship of Maple Leaf Adventures. 8 guests in shared double accommodations.
- Swell: a 90-foot, classic tugboat, with a 111-year history on the coast of Alaska, British Columbia, and Washington, she is a beloved ship along the coast. 12 guests in 6 cozy, private ensuite cabins.
From solo traveler specials, to early booking flight credits that expire this fall, find them all at our Special Offers page.
- Haida Gwaii: Archipelago along the continental shelf, south of Alaska. Marine life, Haida culture, rainforest, travel with Haida storyteller. May, June, July
- The Great Bear Rainforest: 6.4 million hectares of largely protected ancient rainforest, home to grizzly bears, the rare white spirit bear, coastal (marine) wolves, and whales. Also cutting-edge conservation research and Indigenous cultural experiences. May, June, July, August, September, October
- Slow Travel in Alaska: The natural and cultural wonders of Alaska without the crowds on 12-day supervoyages: glaciers, whales and bears, rainforest, and more. July, August • Summer Adventures on BC’s Rainforest Coast – Discover summer wildlife, beaches, islands, and rainforest far from crowds and tourist traps with these 5- to 9-day expeditions along the coast in summer. July, August
- Desolation Sound & Salish Sea: Easy access from Vancouver and Victoria, and yet feeling so far away. These beautiful areas of islands and fjords feature shorter getaways you can drive to, yet still experience wildlife and natural wonders. April, May, October
- BC’s First Grape Safari by Expedition Yacht: Embark on a wine tasting tour like no other. Away from the heat of summer, the crowds, and the travel disruption that comes with it. This is a 5-day tasting odyssey into Cowichan and the Gulf Islands’ emerging wine regions and the pioneering winemakers behind them. And while wine tasting provides the purpose of the trip, it’s about much more: an exploration of the nature and culture of the Salish Sea, that inspires the wines we make.
Our all-inclusive fares range from Cdn $3465 plus tax per person to upwards of $11,000 plus tax per person, depending on the location, duration and ship. For full prices see our Dates and Rates!