Any city that started life with the name of Duwamps (really! It came from the name of a local Native American tribe) deserves our attention, and Seattle deserves more than just a little. This gorgeous spot in the northwest corner of the U.S. is filled with diversions and scenery that are unsurpassed in any other metropolitan community.
It's much more than a cruise ship starting and ending point; it's a vibrant, alive, trendsetting and thoughtful place, home to innovations that have changed lives around the world. It's artistic, musical, wired and caffeinated; it's beautiful and friendly and fun.
During the summer months there are fairs and festivals all over the greater Seattle area. Local listings will have the daily events and locations for Seafair, which lasts two months, and Bumbershoot, which takes place on Labor Day weekend.
If you're staying in the downtown area, a car will be a hindrance rather than a help, so rent a car only for the day that you need it. Families, couples and seniors will find the city enchanting, the fresh sea air refreshing, the northwest cuisine delicious and the activities enticing.
--By San Diego-based Jana Jones, who is the creator and editor of lodging Web site Sleeping-Around.com, as well as one of Cruise Critic's stalwart ship reviewers.
Image provided by the Seattle Convention & Visitors Bureau.