Ketchikan to Seattle

12 Days

11 Nights

For those who love to see ‘whats around the next corner’ this trip is for you. Our days are governed by the ebb and flow of the tide and you will  quickly slip into boat mode as we leave civilization behind. Discovery’s cruises are very opportunistic in nature and with no set schedule we can make the most of wildlife encounters along the way.

Tour Map

Sample Itinerary

Take a breath of ocean air and make yourself comfortable on board as we depart Ketchikan this morning. Watch for the tell tale spout of a humpback whale as we cross Dixon Entrance and cruise into Canadian waters. A shortcut through shallow Venn Passage leads into Prince Rupert where we’ll clear customs and tie up for the evening.

Wake up to the smell of freshly brewed coffee and take a stroll on deck before breakfast as Discovery gets underway. We’ll cross the Strait of Juan de Fuca and cruise through the San Juan Islands, a beautiful archipelago of over 450 islands, rocky pinnacles and beaches. Keep a look out for Orca Whales that frequent this area. We’ll time the tide later in the day and sneak through Dodd Narrows just south of Nanaimo (on Vancouver Island) where we’ll clear Customs and tie up for the night.

Deep fjords and cascading waterfalls form part of the majestic landscape of British Colombia’s northern coastal fringe. You’ll feel like you’re in another world here. Dense rainforest, rich river estuaries and salmon streams provide habitat for wolves, bald eagles, brown bear, black bear and the elusive Spirit Bear. Our anchorage tonight lies tucked beneath snowcapped mountains and we’ll spend a few hours exploring (by skiff or kayak – your choice) to look for wildlife in the meadows and rivers at the head of the inlet.

Narrow passages and tidal currents again give way to coastal islands. Jackson Narrows is so shallow at the dog leg turn that you can almost make out the bottom. We’ll make our way to the small community of Shearwater and tie at the dock amongst fishing boats and luxury yachts in a small marina. There are stories to share, a hike to a muskeg bog or pop up to the local Pub and relax on the patio.

We may stop for a spot of fishing before an early arrival at Pruth Bay on Calvert Island where we’ll skiff to shore (and/or you can kayak) and hike through coastal forest to a driftwood littered beach. Explore the beach and rock pools or join the crew on a longer hike to West Beach. It’s a great spot for a campfire and cookout as the colors fade and the sun sets over the Pacific Ocean. Watch for humpback whales in Fitzhugh Sound.

We’ll get under way early this morning to cross Queen Charlotte Sound. Once around Cape Caution ocean currents support abundant marine life in the surrounding waters so keep a look out for Orca, Humpback Whales, Porpoise, Seals and a variety of sea birds once we are inside the northern tip of Vancouver Island. Tonight we’ll likely be dockside in Port McNeill.

Our route into Johnstone Strait takes us right past the famous rubbing beaches where Orca Whales congregate each summer to feed and socialize. Its a second chance to look for Orca whales this morning and in the afternoon we cruise in waters frequented by Pacific White-sided dolphins that are known to come together in large pods sometimes even accompanying the boat.

We’ll cruise through Inter connecting channels on our way towards Georgia Strait with a stop in one of the scenic anchorages around Desolation Sound.

We’ll make our way toward the coast again today and cruise to Prince Rupert a port city and transport hub at the western terminus of the Trans-Canada Highway.

Civilization beckons and we’ll spend the today cruising in Georgia Strait which separates Vancouver Island from the Canadian mainland. Overnight will likely be at a small marina.

Todays cruise winds through the San Juan Islands, a beautiful archipelago of over 450 islands, rocky pinnacles and beaches. Keep a look out for Orca Whales (J-pod) that frequent this area. Tonights destination is either Roche or Friday Harbor (or an anchorage via one of these towns) to clear into US Customs.

We’ll cross the Strait of Juan de Fuca and cruise south in Puget Sound to Seattle. At days end we transfer through the Ballard Locks that connect Puget Sound to our moorage in South Lake Union.

Disembark: We typically arrive at the dock late afternoon.

Please keep in mind: While cruises follow the general route described weather, tides and wildlife encounters will at times determine the evenings destination. This spontaneity allows us to provide the best trip possible and is one of the joys of small ship cruising.

From our Guests:

Photo by Ron Niebrugge

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