It’s time to breathe the fresh, mile-high air on Hurricane Ridge, just south of Port Angeles, in the Olympic National Park. You’ll feel you’re on top of the world, and you actually are! The ruggedly carved mountain range contrasts with the soft fields of wild flowers in the subalpine meadows below. Next, it’s Anchors Away! Cruise the pristine waters and narrow passageways aboard the Viking Star. View Orca whales, and other wildlife, on a 3 day cruise you’ll never forget! We’ll end this journey in the Emerald City, Seattle, where we have some fantastic things planned!
Day 1 Sunday August 7th – Salem, OR to Port Angeles, WA
The Motor Coach will pick you up at your hotel this morning. Next, lunch is served at Anthony’s at Sinclair Inlet… The restaurant overlooks Bremerton Marina and hosts spectacular, sweeping views of Sinclair Inlet, the Bremerton ferry, Naval ships, and local boating activity. After lunch, we’ll visit the Puget Sound Navy Museum… Visitors can explore the naval history of the region and experience life as a sailor through exhibits about the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, the USS John C. Stennis, Special Operations Submarines, and much more. Then, walk next door to the USS Turner Joy… The famed Navy destroyer from the Vietnam War is now maintained and administered by the Bremerton Historic Ships Association. The museum ship and memorial honors not only the men and women of our modern US Navy, but also recognizes the accomplishments of those who help build and maintain the Navy’s ships as well. An active and educational facility makes the USS Turner Joy a unique and lasting legacy to Puget Sound’s maritime heritage. Welcome aboard the USS Turner Joy! Next, we’ll check into our home for the night; the Red Lion Hotel in Port Angeles. Your Evening is free to explore! Red Lion Hotel, Port Angeles WA. (B, L)
Day 2 August 8th – Port Angeles, WA to Friday Harbor, WA
We’ll start our day with a trip to the Olympic National Park Visitors Center… Diversity is the hallmark of Olympic National Park. From the lush canopy of the rain forests, to the sandy beaches of the coast, to the majestic overlooks of the rugged, glacier-capped mountains, Olympic National Park has a great deal to offer. Next, it’s on to Hurricane Ridge… the most easily accessed mountain area within Olympic National Park. In clear weather, fantastic views can be enjoyed throughout the year. Lunch is on your own in the quant town of Port Townsend, then, we’ll be welcomed aboard the Chinook… After clearing the dock in Port Townsend, we will work our way towards the San Juan archipelago. We’ll cruise past such points of interest as Iceberg Point, Deadman’s Island, and Cattle Pass. As we travel, our captain will give an interesting and entertaining narration about the history of the islands. Upon arrival in Friday Harbor you and your luggage will be transferred to the Earthbox Inn & Spa. Afterward you’ll have time to look around, do some shopping and explore restaurants for your evening meal. With no less than a dozen restaurants offering a variety of cuisine, ambiance, and prices, you will easily find something that satisfies. Your evening is free to explore Friday Harbor… Earthbox Inn, Friday Harbor WA. (B)
Day 3 August 9th – San Juan Islands – Local Touring
We have a full and exciting day ahead of us. Start the morning off with a hot cup of coffee or tea upon boarding. You’ll be served breakfast onboard the Viking Star, as we make our way north in San Juan Channel to our first stop of the day. Tour Roche Harbor… established in 1886 as the company town of the Roche Harbor Lime Works. The classic Hotel de Haro is still open today and is now listed on the National Historic Register. You will have a plenty of time for a good walk around on your own, or join us on a guided tour conducted by one of our crew members. At noon, we’ll re-board the Chinook to explore the more central of the San Juan Islands, while searching for wildlife, including Orca and Minke whales, as you dine on our famous Old Fashioned Cracked Crab Feast. Arrive at the Rosario Resort for a shore visit & Organ Concert in the Moran Mansion… Christopher Peacock, an accomplished musician, author and Rosario historian, offers a presentation of music and photography that walks guests through the history of the Moran family, and the Rosario estate. Highlights of the presentation include the historic Moran Photograph Collection, music from Phantom of the Opera – played on the mansion’s 1,972 pipe Aeolian organ with silent film, stories of the Mansion’s most colorful residents, and Christopher’s original piano compositions played on the 1900 Steinway Grand Piano! We’ll indulge in a wonderful dinner at the resort before we depart for an evening wine tasting cruise back to Friday Harbor. Enjoy tasting a few of the local San Juan Island while soaking up the evening sunset and unforgettable scenery. Earthbox Inn, Friday Harbor WA. (B, L, D)
Day 4 August 10th – Friday Harbor, WA to Seattle, WA
You’ll start your day today with coffee/tea and a tasty breakfast on board, as we steer for the top of the San Juan archipelago. Once again we’ll go in search of Orca Whales, Bald Eagles, Harbor Seals, Dall’s Porpoise, Minke Whales, sea birds and other magnificent wildlife. Viewed in their natural environment these magnificent animals are always a treat to behold! Sucia Island Nature Walk & Picnic… Up north, at the very top of the archipelago, lies a unique, horseshoe shaped destination called Sucia Island State Park. The reefs and broken shorelines of the island are from a geologic folding of the Earth’s crust, which has brought many interesting marine fossils to the surface. Upon arrival on Sucia, you’ll be treated to a freshly-prepared picnic on the beach. After lunch, take a short hike through the forest or along the shoreline and enjoy this opportunity to stretch your legs among some of the most stunning shorelines and views the Northwest has to offer. After our unforgettable shore visit on Sucia we’ll re-board the Chinook to continue on your final leg of our voyage, taking us through channels and past islands not yet explored. We’ll depart on the Motor Coach for Seattle, where a welcome dinner awaits. The Maxwell Hotel, Seattle WA. (B, L, D)
Day 6 August 11th – Seattle, WA – Local Touring
Enjoy breakfast at the hotel this morning. We’ll also enjoy another cruise on a distinctly different kind of vessel… the Ducks! Travelers and local Seattle-ites of all ages love to Ride the Ducks! Their hilarious, Coast Guard-certified maritime captains will take you on an adventure tour of Seattle while they narrate historical information and local folklore, dance to funky music and QUACK you up with jokes and comedy! Next, you’ll experience a one-hour historical tour of Pike Place Market, filled with intriguing tales! At 107 years old, Pike Place Market is the oldest continuously operating market in the United States. The original Starbucks and Sur La Table stores can be found here, as well as the world famous fish throwing “Pike Place Fish Boys”. Your afternoon is free to explore the Emerald City on your own… Early Evening we’ll tour Chihuly Garden of Glass, providing a look at the inspiration and influences that formed the career of artist Dale Chihuly. Located at Seattle Center, Chihuly Garden of Glass includes an Exhibition Hall, the centerpiece Glasshouse and a lush Garden. The Exhibition Hall contains eight galleries and three Drawing Walls, offering visitors a comprehensive look at Chihuly’s significant series of work; the Glasshouse presents a suspended 1,400-piece, 100-foot-long sculpture; and the Garden is a backdrop for four monumental sculptures and other installations. Maxwell Hotel, Seattle WA. (B)
Day 7 August 12th – Seattle, WA to Salem, OR
This morning, board the Coast Starlight passenger train to Portland, or take the motor coach to the SeaTac airport in Seattle. (B)
“Custom Tours” were designed for groups of 24 or more… If you have a group that wants to book one of these trips… or wants us to design a tour for your groups specific needs… please don’t hesitate to call us. Our tours are designed with a “love of discovery”. Our creative itineraries can be custom-designed to your request including some “must see” attractions as well as “off-the-beaten-path” experiences.