Upcoming Trips

Bearcat Explorers experience destinations near and far! Alumni, parents, and friends are invited to join us on the upcoming trips. At any point, feel free to contact the office at 503-370-6430, or email the trip contacts listed below.

2018 Trips

Antarctica, the Falklands & Cape Horn - SOLD OUT

February 25 - March 16, 2018


This will be a very special opportunity (and price!) to see some of the most spectacular scenery on earth! Alumni and friends will be treated to the amazing beauty of the Chilean Fjords, Tierra del Fuego, the Beagle Channel, Cape Horn and four days in Antarctica before finishing on the Falkland Islands (great for bird-watching) and Montevideo, Uruguay (a rising tourist destination). Most of our time will be spent aboard the MS Midnatsol, a state-of-the-art cruise ship built especially for this part of the world.

Our tour operator, Vantage, has selected the optimal time of year to visit this part of the world. It has also assembled the best possible value package for a trip of this magnitude. We have been given the 2016 price for a 2018 trip! In addition, Vantage offers a pre-payment discount of 10% if paid by Feb. 25, 2017. If you have any desire to see the "Seventh Continent" in your lifetime, this is likely the best opportunity and value you will see. And sharing this experience with other Willamette alumni and friends will make it even more memorable. A post-trip extension of six nights in Santiago, Chile and Easter Island is also available.

For additional information, contact Kim Burris in the Alumni Office (503-370-6430 or kburris@willamette.edu) or Jim Booth ’64 (503-910-3192 or jbooth@willamette.edu).

  • Cost: Begins at $7,999 per person double occupancy plus air ($1,399 from Portland; $1,049 from Seattle; and $949 from San Francisco and Los Angeles). A 10% pre-payment discount is available if paid by Feb. 25, 2017; lower discount thereafter.
  • Single supplement: $699. Discounts for pre-payment and previous Vantage travelers (within last two years) available.
  • Deposit: $500 per person
  • Final Payment Due: Nov. 25, 2017
  • Activity Level: Moderate to Active
  • Group Size: 20
  • Tour Host: Jim Booth '64

Glacial Adventures of Alaska

June 19-29, 2018

alaska glacier

We are very pleased to offer a fabulous five-star cruise through the Inland Passage to Alaska and back! We will travel from Seattle to the Hubbard Glacier on Oceania’s Regatta, the same 684-passenger ship that took us through the Panama Canal in 2015. Along the way, there will be stops in Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Icy Strait Point, the Hubbard Glacier, Sitka, and Victoria. Your cost will be based on 2-for-1 cruise fares, and will include free airfare, free unlimited Internet access, and your choice of six shore excursions, a $600 shipboard credit or a free beverage package.

Our tour operator for this trip is Go Next, which did a great job for us on the Panama trip two years ago. They will provide us with assistance on travel arrangements prior to departure, support during the trip from an experienced program manager, a welcome reception, select shore excursion packages and a price below regular Oceania rates. This will be a truly luxurious, yet comprehensive tour of the Inland Passage. Pack comfortable and casual attire, as no formal wear will be required.

For brochure and registration information, contact Kim Burris in the Alumni Office (503-370-6430 or kburris@willamette.edu) or Jim Booth ’64 (503-910-3192 or jbooth@willamette.edu).

  • Cost: $3,049 per person, double occupancy
  • Deposit: $950
  • Final Payment Due: March 19, 2018
  • Activity Level: Light to moderate
  • Group Size: 22
  • Tour Host: Jim Booth '64

Majestic Canadian Rockies by Train, Seaplane & Ferry

NEW DATE - September 22-29, 2018

canada rockies

Note: Some details of this trip have been changed. See the description below.

We are pleased to offer a return to the spectacular Canadian Rockies (we last went in 2007), a region known for its glimmering icefields, soaring peaks and beautiful lakeside forests. This extraordinary trip will feature a dome-car train ride, a seaplane ride from Vancouver, B.C. to Victoria, a speed ferry ride from Victoria to Seattle, a snow coach ride on the Athabasca Glacier, and many other great activities for everyone in the family. The packed itinerary also boasts  scenic adventures — including 11 sightseeing excursions and cultural discoveries — but it will still be manageable for all age groups and for working people, as the trip covers just one work week (Saturday to Saturday). If you have not seen the exquisite beauty of Vancouver, Victoria, Jasper, the Columbia Ice Fields and the wine country around Kelowna, this would be an opportunity you won’t want to miss, especially with the camaraderie of Willamette alumni and friends.

While costs for North America tours have risen recently, travelers can offset this by taking advantage of the pre-payment discount of 10% offered by Vantage, our tour operator. There are further discounts for alumni who have traveled with Vantage in the last two years. The trip begins in Vancouver and ends in Seattle, so transportation costs will also be low.

For additional information, contact Kim Burris in the Alumni Office (503-370-6430 or kburris@willamette.edu) or Jim Booth ’64 (503-910-3192 or jbooth@willamette.edu).

  • Cost: $4,299 per person double occupancy plus air ($599 from west coast airports). A 10% pre-payment discount is available if paid by Sept. 22, 2017; declining discount thereafter. At least one FREE single supplement available. Three-day post extension available in Seattle for $449 per person.
  • Deposit: $500 per person
  • Final Payment Due: June 22, 2018
  • Activity Level: Moderate
  • Group Size: 26
  • Tour Host: Jim Booth '64

New York Theater Tour

October 1-7, 2018

nyc tour 2018

Travel to the Big Apple and join fellow Willamette alumni for an unforgettable experience touring the city's legendary theater scene. Along with a six-night stay at the Kimberly Hotel in midtown Manhattan, travelers will enjoy five exceptional shows (four on Broadway and one Off-Broadway), four intimate post-performance discussions with New York arts professionals and a private tour of the best art galleries in New York's chic Chelsea district. On top of all that, the trip also includes daily gourmet breakfasts, a welcome and farewell dinner and a private coach to take you to and from shows and events. This experience is truly a theater lover's dream!

This trip will be led by award-winning playwright, screenwriter, film director, actor and founder of Insider Cultural Tours James Ryan. Mr. Ryan is the former chair of the graduate dramatic writing program at the Actors Studio/New School University and he teaches in the graduate dramatic writing program at Rutgers University. He is the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, New York Foundation for the Arts, McKnight Foundation, and the Drama League Award.

Click here to see complete details and the itinerary. For additional information, contact Kim Burris in the Alumni Office (503-370-6430 or kburris@willamette.edu).

  • Cost: $4,550 per person double occupancy (airfare not included) Single supplement is $1,133.
  • Deposit: $1,200 (due by June 25, 2018)
  • Final Payment Due: July 25, 2018
  • Tour Host: James Ryan of Insider Cultural Tours

national parks

2019 Trips

America's Majestic National Parks

June 15-29, 2019

This trip is a combination of the Canyonlands of the Southwest and the Wild West Adventure trips. See info on those individual trips below.

In response to numerous requests, we are finally offering alumni and friends the opportunity to enjoy one or both eight-day trips which will cover the Grand Canyon, Lake Powell, Bryce and Zion Parks in the Southwest, followed by another eight-day excursion through the national parks from Jackson Hole, Wyoming to Rapid City, South Dakota, including Yellowstone and Mount Rushmore.

Vantage Deluxe Travel will be our tour operator for these trips. Their trips are known for excellent itineraries and great value. If you have traveled with Vantage during the previous two years (Croatia in 2017 and Canadian Rockies in 2018), you will be entitled to discounts (3% of Croatia trip cost; 5% of Canadian Rockies trip cost). Additionally, Vantage offers a 10% discount if you pre-pay for the trip a year in advance, with lesser discounts thereafter.

See the details for each individual tour below.


Canyonlands of the Southwest

June 15-22, 2019

This trip is the first leg of America's Majestic National Parks trip. See below for pricing for this trip alone and when combined with the Wild West Adventure.

The first Saturday-to-Saturday leg of this tandem tour of great national parks of North America follows the classic route from Scottsdale, Arizona to Las Vegas, Nevada with highlights including a visit to Sedona, a train ride on the Grand Canyon Railway, a cruise on picturesque Lake Powell, a float trip on the scenic Colorado River and a visit to the spectacularly beautiful Zion Canyon. Along the way, we will experience seven sightseeing excursions and five cultural discoveries, while staying at deluxe hotels and lodges.

Wild West Adventure: Yellowstone, Grand Teton and U.S. Monuments


June 22-29, 2019

This trip is the second leg of America's Majestic National Parks trip. See below for pricing for this trip alone and when combined with Canyonlands of the Southwest.

The second Saturday-to-Saturday leg can also be done individually or in tandem with the Canyonlands tour, beginning in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and ending in Rapid City, South Dakota. Highlights will include a float trip on the Snake River, extensive viewing of the world’s first national park, Yellowstone, the Buffalo Bill Center in Cody, Wyoming, the Devils Tower (first U. S. national monument named by Franklin Roosevelt) and the amazing Mount Rushmore lighting at night.  This tour includes 10 sightseeing excursions and four cultural discoveries, as well as the aforementioned deluxe hotels and lodges.

Please contact Kim Burris in the Alumni Office (kburris@willamette.edu or 503-370-6430), Jim Booth (jbooth@willamette.edu or 503-910-3192) or Cheryl Sheehan at Vantage (csheehan@vantagetravel.com or 866-786-2006, ext. 7147) for more information or to deposit.


  1. America's Majestic National Parks (both Canyonlands of the Southwest and the Wild West Adventure combined) - $7,198 (with free airfare!).
  2. Canyonlands of the Southwest - $3,499 (+airfare--$499 from Portland). Post-trip option: Two nights in Las Vegas for additional $499.
  3. Wild West Adventure - $3,699 (+airfare--$749 from Portland). Pre-trip option: Two nights in Jackson Hole for additional $799.


  • Deposit: $500 per person
  • Final Payment Due: March 15, 2019
  • Activity Level: Moderate
  • Group Size: 20
  • Tour Host: Jim Booth '64

Greek & Italian Gems

August 22 - September 2, 2019

greek gems

There are few places on the planet more interesting and beautiful than the Greek Isles and Italy. This trip will feature a luxury cruise at an exceptional price. Go Next will be our tour operator on the Oceania Five-Star cruise ship Sirena. Join Jim Booth ’64 and his wife Sandy on what may be their final trip for alumni and friends of Willamette.

The cruise begins in Rome (although some may wish to start a week earlier from Barcelona) and just gets better as we enjoy the beauty and history of Sorrento & Capri, Sicily (Taormina), Corfu, Gythion, the spectacular and romantic isle of Santorini, Mykonos, Dubrovnik, before finishing with two nights in the unique and historic city of Venice. To add to the value, Oceania is offering free air, unlimited Internet and a choice between a $600 shipboard credit, six free shore excursions or a free beverage package (per stateroom). In addition, you will enjoy the camaraderie of the group at two cocktail parties along the way!

We expect space to go fast, so contact Kim Burris in the Alumni Office (503-370-6430 or kburris@willamette.edu), Jim Booth ’64 (503-910-3192 or jbooth@willamette.edu) or Kate at Go Next (khelmrich@gonext.com or 952-918-8951) with questions and/or about deposit.

  • Cost: From $4,099 per person (includes free air)
  • Deposit: $950 per person
  • Final Payment Due: May 22, 2019
  • Activity Level: Light
  • Group Size: 40
  • Tour Host: Jim '64 and Sandy Booth

Additional trips are currently being planned! Stay Tuned!