Cruises of all kinds scare me: Caribbean cruises, Mediterranean cruises, European cruises, Tom and Suri Cruise. I did a quick search on Carnival Cruise Lines' website and found you can take a "Cruise to Nowhere" for a mere $329. To nowhere. Sorry, but that sounds just plain terrifying.
So when I heard about this eight-day, beer-themed un-cruise that Kendall Jones of the Washington Beer Blog (and Seattle magazine contributing writer) was hosting, I was intrigued. Jones has teamed up with the Seattle-based Un-Cruise Adventures, a company that specializes in exclusive, non-traditional sea travels with smaller boats, fewer people and more interesting activities, to offer the craft beer-themed Explore! Olympic Wilderness & San Juan Islands expedition.
For eight days and seven nights, 60 cruise-goers will sail the San Juan Islands, Puget Sound and Salish Sea and enjoy bird watching, whale watching, wildlife viewing, day hikes, shore walks, kayaking and snorkeling. And of course, there will be beer. What's great, though, is that this isn't some regular old "booze cruise." Jones has arranged for several special beer tastings, rare and interesting beers aplenty, and he's planned local beer pairings with fresh local shellfish and seafood.
"I'm excited to introduce people to, and share with them, some of the great beers of Washington as we explore and enjoy the natural beauty of Washington," Jones says. "There's a connection between the beer and the place where it is brewed. I am excited to drink a beer brewed by Hood Canal Brewing as we cruise on Hood Canal. Excited to enjoy a beer brewed by Anacortes Brewing as we sail the Salish Sea. I'm not sure a beer from Port Townsend Brewing can taste any better than it does right after you've tied up to the dock in Port Townsend."
It's all happening in April 2014, so you have plenty of time to secure your dog/cat/baby/house/mini pig sitter. Wine drinkers are welcome and there is a full bar on the boat, too.
Head over to Un-cruise.com for more details on the beer cruise or to book your spot. Or visit the Washington Beer Blog. Who knows, you may just find me aboard, beer in hand, life jacket securely fastened.