Starting this month, Holland America will be venturing on a new type of cruise that aims to give back.

Cruise With Purpose (SM) is more than just a pleasure cruise. Participants on the Alaskan cruises will also be taking part volunteer work and “citizen science” projects.

The first Cruise With Purpose (SM) will tour the Auke Bay, allowing passengers to collect data on the habitat and communication skills of orca and humpback whales in association with the Alaska Sea Grant’s Marine Advisory Program and the Alaska Marine Conservation Alliance.

The volunteer-style cruise costs $219 per participant. After their work is done, participants will be able to track their scientific efforts via the Cruise With Purpose (SM) website. Cruises will last through September 2009.