With modernized cityscapes, gorgeous parks, and breathtaking waterfront views, Seattle remains high on the list of must-see destinations in the United States. Sample the Emerald City’s famous espresso (it is the birthplace of Starbucks, after all), visit its fresh, local markets, and tour the thriving art, tech, and foodie scenes that are scattered throughout its diverse neighborhoods. Located between Puget Sound and Lake Washington, Seattle is also a fantastic city for those who enjoy outdoor recreational activities, such as hiking and kayaking.
The city is perfectly situated to embark on an Alaska cruise from Seattle. After spending a few days in this vibrant metropolitan city, you’ll experience the towering glaciers, rugged landscapes, and unique wildlife of the Last Frontier.
Discover the magic of the Last Frontier during a Dawes Glacier cruise from Seattle, where you’ll sail through Alaska’s Inside Passage, stop in quaint fishing towns, and witness the beauty of nature’s wonders. Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventure or are hoping to spot wildlife in their natural habitat, there’s something for everyone to enjoy during a cruise to Alaska.
Allow the colorful wooden buildings of Ketchikan to welcome you to this seaside town, known as the salmon capital of the world. Enjoy a freshly-caught salmon bake for lunch or embark on a crab fishing excursion and see what you can haul in. Ketchikan boasts the largest collection of Northwest totem poles, which are fascinating works of art that depict Tlingit history and culture.
In Alaska’s capital of Juneau, you’ll find yourself surrounded by mountain vistas and scenic waterfronts. A favorite spot for adventure seekers, Juneau boasts more hiking trails than roads, and is home to the magnificent Mendenhall Glacier, which is easily accessible on a hike through Tongass National Forest.
Stop in Skagway, a small town where over 100,000 prospectors once panned for gold during the great Gold Rush of the 1890s. Visit the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park and learn more about this important era of American history. Board a vintage train on the historic White Pass and Yukon Route, grab a window seat, and admire Alaska’s breathtaking scenery.
Experience the adventure of a lifetime when you cruise to Alaska from Seattle with Celebrity Cruises. Sail past magnificent glaciers and admire the view from your private veranda or cruise ship deck. Stop in the unforgettable ports of Juneau, Ketchikan, and Skagway, then unwind in your luxurious stateroom before setting off on the next day’s adventure. Marvel at the incredible calving displays of Dawes Glacier while an onboard naturalist describes every detail of the captivating sight.
On Celebrity Solstice, you’ll travel aboard a luxury ship where every one of your needs is taken care of. Enjoy world-class dining at our wide array of restaurants featuring global cuisine, fresh seafood, and grilled favorites. Catch an al-fresco concert by the pool deck, or spend the evening watching an entertaining show at The Theatre. Throughout your journey, you’ll find endless opportunities to make memories you’ll cherish forever.
Alaska cruises from Seattle depart from Smith Cove Cruise Terminal, located about two miles north of downtown Seattle. Taxis, buses, rideshares, and car rentals are available outside the terminal.
Centrally located in the heart of Seattle, the Chihuly Garden and Glass Exhibit features some of the stunning glassworks of world-renowned artist, Dale Chihuly. Blending in perfectly with the lush, green garden theme of the Emerald City, the glassworks are on display in an open-air museum.
Seattle’s most famous attraction, the Space Needle, is also the most easily recognizable structure in the city’s stunning skyline. Towering over the neighboring buildings, the Space Needle features an observation deck approximately 520 feet in the air, which offers breathtaking 360-degree views. Just underneath the observation deck, you’ll find a restaurant where you can dine in style overlooking the spectacular city of Seattle.
One of the oldest farmers’ markets in the US, and certainly one of the oldest attractions in Seattle, Pike Place Market has been open for over a hundred years. At the fish market, watch as local fishermen and vendors toss fresh-caught fish in the air, passing each fish through the market until it reaches the customer.
If stunning landscapes and breathtaking views are what make your vacation special, look no further than Puget Sound. The Sound provides postcard-like views of snow-capped mountains behind evergreen forests stretching for miles until they meet the sea right in front of your eyes.
Riding one of Seattle’s many ferries is a unique way to see the best views of the city. From the rugged evergreen forests to the sharp, stunning skyscrapers of the city, you can see all aspects of Seattle from your waterside vantage point. Plus, you may just get a chance to meet some of the local marine wildlife that come out to play while you enjoy a peaceful and smooth ferry ride.
The Space Needle may be the most easily recognizable structure in the Seattle skyline, but it is not the tallest. The Columbia Tower reaches heights of nearly 1,000 feet and boasts 75 floors. Go to the observation deck on the 73rd floor and take in the spectacular and awe-inspiring views of Seattle and the surrounding area.
On Blake Island, you’ll find Tillicum Village, the heart of Seattle’s Native American heritage. Learn the history of the first inhabitants of this beautiful land and enjoy interactive activities like woodcarving and traditional dance shows. Fully immerse yourself in the culture by tasting authentic dishes prepared in the traditional style of the area’s Native American tribes.
Love coffee? Then a tour of the Starbucks Headquarters in Seattle is a must. Discover how the world’s largest coffee chain got its start and how it runs today. Tour the facility and see its tasting rooms and laboratories, where coffee testing is performed daily. Sip Starbucks’ famous blends, learn the history of different coffee types and where they come from, and get tips and tricks for making your own special brew at home.
Portage Bay Cafe
Brunch is the main attraction at this café, which serves generous portions of global staples like huevos rancheros, Swedish pancakes, and crab cake benedicts throughout the day.
Love a good steak dinner? This is the place for you. The Metropolitan Grill serves the very best meat out there, hand selecting each of the USDA Prime steaks on the menu. Pair your main with a glass from their award-winning wine list.
Pike Place Market
Not just a fish-tossing market, Pike Place Market also features a myriad of local restaurants, from casual bar and grill atmospheres to fine dining and upscale cuisine. Many of the ingredients in the market’s restaurants are fresh.
Dubbed “The Emerald City,” Seattle perfectly balances the bliss of nature and the modernization of urban living. Heavily influenced by a variety of cultures over the decades, Seattle is a multi-cultural melting pot, drawing from ancient Duwamish roots and early European settlers, as well as more recent Latin, Asian American, African American, and Nordic cultural influence. The city is known for its outdoor events, shows, and festivals, as well as its lively art and music scene.
During the busy peak cruising season, both the port area and downtown Seattle are well served with ample options for local transportation. From the ship terminal, most visitors on Seattle cruises prefer to take the shuttle offered through the cruise line to the pier. For more private or direct transportation, plenty of taxis are typically found in the area, and rideshares are available as well.
Once you’ve docked at Pier 91 in Smith Cove Cruise Terminal—an old naval base about 2 miles north of downtown Seattle—you’ll be a short walk from several local boutiques in what’s known as the Magnolia neighborhood.
Tipping is not mandatory, but it is customary in Seattle, just as it is throughout the U.S. Tips are not only greatly appreciated, but they are quite often a crucial part of the wages in the tourism industry.
Here are some handy tipping customs to keep in mind:
Restaurants: 15% for standard service and 20% or higher for excellent service.
Bars: An appropriate tip in a bar is 10% to 15% of the bar tab total. However, if you're ordering complicated drinks or require additional services, such as bottle-opening service or food service, a tip of at least 20% or higher is appropriate.
Taxis: It is customary to provide a tip of between 10% and 18% of your fare to your taxi driver.
Tour guides: If you are happy with your tour guide, a tip of 10% to 20% of the total cost of the tour (including all members of your party) is appropriate.