The 2025 Alaska cruise season has begun with Norwegian Bliss departing the Port of Seattle on Saturday, April 6 from the Bell Street Pier Cruise Terminal on a 7-night itinerary to favorite ports in the Last Frontier.

This year is the 25th year of cruise voyages from Seattle to Alaska, a momentous milestone that will only get better with port improvements and outstanding economic impact from hundreds of sailings through the next few months. At the same time, the port is working hard to ensure environmental responsibility, preserving its position for phenomenal, unspoiled sailings for generations to come.

Norwegian Bliss has officially sailed into the 2024 Alaska season with the ship’s first departure of the year from the Port of Seattle. The 168,028-gross-ton, Breakaway-Plus class ship is purpose-built for the Alaska market, with a tremendous observation lounge and other viewing areas onboard so travelers will never miss a moment of the region’s spectacular scenery and wildlife.

The ship will be offering 7-night sailings through mid-October, visiting destinations such as Sitka, Juneau, Icy Strait Point, Ketchikan, and Victoria, with scenic cruising in the phenomenal Glacier Bay.

Norwegian Bliss is only one ship that is part of the 275 planned sailings from the Port of Seattle this year. Up next is Carnival Spirit with her first departure on April 23, followed by Norwegian Encore departing on April 28.

In addition to ships from Norwegian Cruise Line and Carnival Cruise Line, vessels from Holland America Line, Royal Caribbean International Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, Oceania Cruise Line, Seabourn, and Hurtigruten Expeditions will all set sail from the Port of Seattle this year. Various ships will also visit the city as a port of call.

In total, more than 800,000 unique passengers will embark from the cruise port in the next few months, until Norwegian Bliss closes the season with her October 26 departure.

Norwegian Bliss Docked in Seattle, Washington (Photo Credit: Wirestock Creators / Shutterstock)

This is a great contrast to 2000, the first season of passenger service from Seattle, with just 36 ship calls that began with the then brand-new Norwegian Sky, now one of the oldest ships in Norwegian’s fleet.

“Our history with the Port of Seattle runs deep, and it is a partnership we are very proud of,” said David J. Herrera, president of Norwegian Cruise Line. “Together we pioneered voyages to Alaska from Seattle, with Norwegian Sky’s inaugural sailing to the Last Frontier in May 2000. In 2018, Norwegian Bliss was the first ship to be christened in Seattle, and today, we continue to bring guests from all over the world to sail aboard our spectacular ships from this beautiful city.”

It is the collaboration between cruise lines and the city that has made it a remarkable homeport for Alaskan sailings, with many travelers extending their visits to enjoy all the Emerald City has to offer.

“The Port of Seattle collaborates with the tourism and small business community to ensure passengers are well informed of the sights, sounds, and adventures of our city. From our revitalized waterfront to our diverse neighborhoods, passengers have an abundance of experiences to embrace,” said Visit Seattle President and CEO Tammy Canavan.

“As the gateway to Alaska, we look forward to welcoming explorers this cruise season, and sending them home eager to return for more.”

The Port of Seattle estimates that 2024’s cruise season will bring nearly $900 million in economic impact to the region, including direct tourism and spending by passengers, provisioning cruise ships, and the 5,500 jobs supported by the cruise industry, from longshoremen and port workers to expanded workforces in other tourism and related sectors.

Norwegian Bliss Cruise Ship in Seattle (Photo Courtesy: Port of Seattle)

“The working men and women of ILWU local 19 welcome the start of this year’s cruise season and the family wage jobs it provides to our local,” said Rich Austin, President ILWU local 19. “Each year the cruise industry can rely on our highly skilled and efficient workforce to see that ships are fully provisioned and the needs of passengers and their baggage are met.”

While the cruise industry has undeniably expanded in Seattle, both the city and the cruise lines are working to keep the industry environmentally responsible and sustainable. This will ensure many years to come of amazing cruise vacations with travelers able to enjoy the pristine waters, remarkable scenery, and stunning wildlife of the region.

Read Also: Your Guide to the Best Alaska Cruise Ports

“Over the last 25 years, the cruise business has become a significant part of our local economy, contributing to hundreds of businesses and thousands of jobs. All that activity comes with environmental impacts, however, and so the Port of Seattle is committed to providing a leadership role in advancing maritime decarbonization,” said Ryan Calkins, Port of Seattle Commissioner.

Photo Credit: lenic / Shutterstock

“Our objective is to provide a road map for maritime leaders worldwide that demonstrates the viability of a greener industry, one that serves our communities and passengers while minimizing environmental and social impacts.”

The port, cruise lines, and other regional communities are working together to create a green corridor for sustainable sailing. The integrated, cooperative effort is one of the first of its kind on such a massive scale to protect the delicate and unique environment of the region.

“The cruise industry is committed to sustainable operations, with some of the most technologically advanced ships sailing in the region, use of shore power to reduce emissions, and investing in new solutions to protect beautiful destinations like the Pacific Northwest,” said Sally Andrews, Vice President Communications & Public Affairs, Cruise Lines International Association.

Among the advancements to be made in 2024 is finalizing shore power for all three Seattle cruise berths, six years earlier than initially forecast.

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