“After a trip up the West coast of the USA a stop in Seattle makes good sense for any visiting superyacht,” says Chace., who adds that the bustling city is a noteworthy one for its excellent dockage and marine trade. “There are dry docks and shipyard facilities; Delta Marine has an excellent service division, for example. Crew always enjoy themselves here, and with an international airport nearby it is handy for crew and guest transfers.”
A historical lumber town and once the busiest port in the Northwest, Port Townsend, just 20 miles from Seattle, can act as a stop on the way to the San Juan islands. “In the 1800s lumber barons built huge Victorian style mansions in the ‘Upper town’, while down in the ‘Lower town’ along the waterfront the saloons and brothels thrived. Now Port Townsend is a charming town with beautiful 19th Century architecture and excellent shopping, restaurants and art galleries.”
Once a commercial port, Roche Harbor was transformed into a resort in the 1950s, but retains much of its original charm with the addition of modern amenities. “A pod of orcas are often found just outside the harbor, and the nightly announcements and ‘colours’ ceremony, where the US flag is lowered and a cannon fired at sunset, are a tradition enjoyed by everyone,” explains Chace.
Vancouver, British Columbia
“Certainly one of the most beautiful cities in the world, tucked between the Straits of Georgia and the North Shore mountains, Vancouver is a must visit for any superyacht," notes Chace. "It has a truly international flavor, with people from all the Commonwealth countries working and living there.”
Princess Louisa Inlet, British Columbia
This fjord lies north of Vancouver and comes with challenges, but is most certainly worth it, says Chace. “Entering should only be done at high, slack tide through the Malibu rapids, a very narrow entrance. Inside, the mountain walls rise steeply on all sides, and at the head of the fjord are Chatterbox falls. This is a spectacular anchorage and well worth exploring by tender and on shore.”
Desolation Sound, British Columbia
Approximately a day’s run north of Princess Louisa, this deep-water sound is another go-to for those wishing to see spectacular fjords, mountains, waterfalls and wildlife. “The mountains plunge nearly vertically into the sea, and the protected water tends to warm up in the summer, so much so that boaters come from hundreds of miles away to spend time in the sound. Swimming, waterskiing, tubing, all of these are possible in the summer thanks to this unusually warm water temperature.”
Queen Charlotte Island, British Columbia
“An offshore island along the coast of British Columbia, this island is home to completely uninhabited bays and beaches, amazing wildlife, a deeply rich First Nations heritage and stunning scenery," Chace explains. "The largest black bears in the world live here and can be seen foraging along the shore.”
“An Ideal stop on the way to Juneau and Glacier Bay, Ketchikan has large docks, great fishing, a wide variety of shops and restaurants, and an international airport with direct flights from the USA,” says Chace, who points to Ketchikan as a good place for crew exchanges and for the start of an Alaska cruise.
Tracy Arm, Alaska
“This is certainly one the most spectacular sights in the world. To see the huge Sawyer glacier calving enormous pieces of ice, as large as office buildings, into the water below is truly amazing. The sound and sight of this process is unlike anything in the world. The scenery leading up to the head of the arm is spectacular, with countless mini-icebergs floating down the sound toward the sea.”
“In very few parts of the world can one watch large creatures go about their business of survival without paying any attention to nearby humans. A superyacht is the perfect vehicle to find these experiences,” concludes Chace. “The sea, the scenery, and the wildlife throughout the Northwest make it a truly amazing part of the world, and worthy of a visit by the world’s finest yachts.”