FAQs

Where is Bellingham?

Bellingham is in Washington State, 80 miles north of Seattle and 22 miles south of the US/Canadian border. You can see where we’re at on Google Maps.

What is the population of Bellingham?

80,885 people, as of 2010.

What is there to do in Bellingham?

There are PLENTY of things to do in Bellingham! The city is located on Bellingham Bay, so there are numerous water-related activities, as well as a great variety of waterside dining options. Mount Baker, Mt. Shuksan and the Cascade Mountains are also just a short drive away on the Mt. Baker Highway. Downtown Bellingham is home of the Whatcom Museum, antique shops on Holly Street, Mindport Exhibits, the SPARK Museum Of Electrical Invention and much more. Some of the best microbreweries in the Northwest are found in Bellingham, including Boundary Bay, Kulshan, Wander, Stone’s Throw and Chuckanut breweries. The Bellingham Cruise Terminal, where our boats and office are located, is just down the hill from the Historic Fairhaven District, where turn-of-the-century brick buildings house a variety of great shops and restaurants. The best resource for Bellingham/Fairhaven information is the Bellingham / Whatcom County Tourism website.

How do I get to your office?

From Interstate 5, take Exit 250. Turn west onto Old Fairhaven Parkway and follow the signs to Alaska Ferry and Fairhaven Terminal. See the map below (click to enlarge). The Port of Bellingham charges $0.50/hour for parking, in the large lot with numbered spaces about 30 yards in front of the terminal building. If you are gone more than a day, the charge is $6/day. There is free parking for up to 2 hours in front of the terminal.

Bellingham Cruise Terminal Map

What is there to do in Friday Harbor?

Friday Harbor, located on San Juan Island, is the largest town in the San Juan Archipelago. It is filled with unique shops, artist galleries, bookstores, pubs, and the Friday Harbor Whale Museum. It is a compact town, with most of the things to do and see within a few blocks of our dock. A good source for online information is the Friday Harbor/San Juan Islands Visitor’s Bureau. To learn more about the history of the town, please visit the Historic Friday Harbor website.

What is the weather like in Bellingham and the San Juan Islands?

During our operating season (May through late September) it is usually fairly dry, with temperatures in the mid-60’s through mid 80’s (fahrenheit). The San Juan Islands are in the rain shadow of the Olympic Mountains, which means the area normally get less rain and has slightly higher temperatures than Bellingham.

Which San Juan Island is the biggest?

Orcas Island is the largest island geographically at 58 square miles, with San Juan Island a close second at 57 square miles. However, the population of San Juan Island is greater than the other islands and Friday Harbor, on San Juan Island, is the largest town in the San Juan Islands.

How big is your boat? Will I get seasick?

The Victoria Star, which goes between Bellingham and Friday Harbor through the San Juan Islands, is 100 feet long and licensed for 149 passengers. Since we only operate during the summer months, when the weather is nice and winds aren’t too strong, the water is usually calm. Also, our cruises go through the protected waters of the San Juan Islands, so there is very little open water that we are going through and the islands provide a natural buffer from the elements. It is very rare for people to get seasick on our cruises.

We would like to rent one of your boats for a private party, event or dinner cruise. Can we?

Yes you can! All three of our vessels are available for private charters. With capacities of 49, 66, 126 and 149 passengers, they’re perfect for lunch or dinner cruises, birthdays, weddings and wedding receptions, sunset and cocktail cruises, company parties, reunions and much more. We can also take you out to islands not serviced by the Washington State Ferries with our new water taxi boat called the Osprey, such as Sucia, Matia and Stuart Islands. For more information, please visit our Private Parties page, or give us a call at 1-800-443-4552.

Do you use locally-sourced food and beverages aboard your vessels?

We do! We are always on the lookout for ways we can incorporate local foods and beverages into our menu. We have always included a wide variety of local and NW beers and wines from Whatcom County and the San Juan Islands. We are proud to partner with Bornstein Seafoods in Bellingham for the Dungeness crab served on our Chuckanut Bay Cracked Crab dinner cruises. Avenue Bread supplies us with their bread and breakfast bars. On our popular Bellingham Bay BREWers Cruise series, Boundary Bay Brewery is on each and every outing, joined by other Northwest breweries including Kulshan, Wander and Chuckanut Breweries.

What is your cancellation policy?

For most of our cruises, including our Whale Watching Adventure cruise and Chuckanut Bay cracked crab dinner cruise, we require 24 hours notice in the event of a cancellation for a full refund. When you make a reservation, we will send you a confirmation letter detailing our cancellation policy.