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San Juan Cruises

Washington's diverse cruising options

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postedJanuary 28, 2020

While Seattle has long been the departure point for major cruise lines offering itineraries to Alaska, the area surrounding the city also is popular for shorter sightseeing excursions. The NTA membership includes the following four companies providing a variety of themed tours that highlight Washington’s northwestern coast:

Argosy Cruises

Using Seattle as its base, Argosy Cruises offers tours year-round. The company has the city covered through its one- to two-hour cruises on Elliott Bay, Lake Union, and Lake Washington. It has two five-hour excursions heading to Blake Island that include visits to Native American sites at Tillicum Village. Contact Dana Barrett for more information.

Island Adventures Whale Watching

This new NTA member offers excursions from three ports: Anacortes (February to November), Everett (March to May), and Port Angeles (May to October). The half-day tours keep the focus on multiple species of whales, sea lions, porpoises, shorebirds, and other animals. Contact Matthew Plier for more information. 

Ride the Ducks of Seattle

For nearly 25 years, the wacky captains from Ride the Ducks have been delighting visitors during 90-minute rides around Seattle. The land portion covers Pike Place Market, Pioneer Square, Fremont, and the downtown waterfront, and the boat tour goes around Lake Union. Contact Tammy Guill for more information.

San Juan Cruises

Operated daily from June to September, and on weekends in May and October, the company’s signature cruise starts and ends in Bellingham and showcases the whales around the San Juan Islands over the course of six hours. The company also offers culinary-themed and holiday tours. Contact Drew Schmidt for more information.


Top photo: San Juan Cruises
Photo by Jim Bachman/


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Norwegian Cruise Line