When we think about spending our vacation on a luxurious cruise, we usually think about the various tropical locations in the Caribbean. However, there is no shortage of beautiful cruise destinations right here in the United States. More specifically, Alaska and the western seaboard offer beautiful coastlines that attract cruisers looking for a more tranquil, relaxing vacation. A western seaboard cruise is a perfect vacation option for those looking for scenic views of beautiful mountains or massive glaciers.
West Coast Cruises
For those looking for a scenic cruise along the coastline of the western seaboard have several options when it comes to which port to depart from. Port locations in California can be found in Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Francisco. Western seaboard departure ports are also located in places such as: Portland, OR; Clarkston, WA; Seattle, WA; Honolulu, HI and Vancouver, BC.
What to See While Cruising
The Pacific coastline offers scenic views of luxurious beaches and interesting cities ready to be explored. Certain cruise itineraries also include visits to wine country. These itineraries offer a much more relaxing vacation, as opposed to the slightly overwhelming pace of cities found in the Caribbean. California cruises are perfect for families hoping to spot celebrities in Hollywood or to spend the day at Universal studios. Cruisers can also explore Getty Center, which displays antiquities and breathtaking art. San Francisco is a great destination because of their high-quality restaurants, historic museums, and world-class shopping centers. Cruises departing from Victoria, British Columbia provide exciting excursions surrounding ocean wildlife exploration.
There are several departure ports along the coast of the Gulf of Alaska. These include: Seward, Skagway, Icy Strait Point, Juneau, Vancouver, Victoria, etc. Alaskan cruises can also be boarded in Seattle, WA.
What to See While Cruising
Alaskan cruises are known for their beautiful, mountainous scenery. Cruises travel past the Kenai Peninsula, travelers can enjoy the stunning views of Kachemak Bay and the volcanic peaks of Cook Inlet. Cruisers can also partake in an excursion in Alaska’s “Golden Heart City”, where you can hike around a six-million acre wild land provided by Denali National Park. The Park also plays host exciting wildlife that can be observed by travelers. Bears, moose, wolves, caribou, and other animals have been found when hiking through the park.
When to Travel
The Alaska cruise season runs between May and September. The summer months are the warmest, at temperatures between high 50’s-70’s, but also have the most rainy days. When looking for wildlife on various excursions, it is recommended that cruisers travel during the later summer months. However, May and September offer cheaper fares and fewer crowds. Weather is certainly unpredictable in Alaska, so travelers should pack both a bathing suit and a warmer jacket just to be safe. The water in the Gulf of Alaska begins to get more choppy at towards the end of the season and is not recommended for passengers who commonly get seasick.
Photo Courtesy: Norwegian