From the founding of Seattle in 1851, the city has had a bustling waterfront. It wasn't controlled by the Port of Seattle in 1911, after it was wrested away from what was essentially a stranglehold dominated by the railroads.
Located at the Bell Street Pier and Smith Cove on the Seattle waterfront, the cruise piers service seven different cruise lines that together carry nearly 900,000 passengers a year out of or through Seattle. Most of them are going to Alaska during the summer, meaning the cruise terminals are very busy. Only a 20-minute cab or shuttle ride from the airport or just minutes off the freeway, the cruise facilities are easily accessed. Amtrak stops nearby as well.
Whether starting a cruise in Seattle or making a stop, there is plenty to see and do close to the cruise ports. Downtown Seattle and the waterfront are people-oriented. It's easy to walk and find great restaurants or tourist sites. The very exceptional mix of outstanding urban and natural experiences virtually on top of each other make Seattle a destination unto itself.
Within blocks of the waterfront you can find great shopping, the Space Needle, the Experience Music Project together with the Science Fiction Museum, Pioneer Square, Seattle Aquarium, and Pike Place Market with its famous fish throwing.