If you are looking for how to maximize your cruise, this ultimate guide for the Princess Cruises Pacific Wine Country Cruise will help you make the most of your time at each port!
What better way to see the Pacific Coast than by taking a west coast cruise? There are so many to choose from, but one of our favorites was the Pacific Wine Country Cruise with Princess Cruises. We went on a cruise to celebrate Josh’s graduation from BYU. We loved seeing all of the iconic sites in San Francisco, exploring Astoria, Oregon, and pretending to be locals in Victoria.
Also, can we talk about cruises for a second? We LOVE THEM. It is so nice to be chartered from place to place, all the while just relaxing on the boat. We ate so much delicious food, watched some fun shows, and visited some fun places. A cruise is the best of all vacations put into one. Cruising with Princess Cruises was so fun too because they made us feel so welcome and the environment was super chill and relaxing.
Let’s get to it! This blog post is all about what to do in each port on your Princess Pacific Wine Country west coast cruise.
P.S. We shot this entire video using our iPhone 7’s! The video quality of these phones is amazing!
Table of Contents
Pacific Wine Country Cruise
The Princess Cruises Pacific Wine Country Cruise typically starts in Los Angeles, California, and ends in Vancouver, Canada. Or vice versa. The stops we are talking about are the stops that our west coast cruise had and the top things we recommend doing in each place!
Here’s what we recommend doing in each place!
The Muir Woods are pretty close to the port in San Francisco and are so beautiful. There are several hikes you can do in there and it’s shaded and amazing. Also, you might get as lucky as we did and see deer! Apparently, they don’t bite, just in case you were wondering.
Such a cute little town. We loved getting to walk around, explore, and eat delicious food. If you are looking for a good burger, go to Napa Valley Burger Company. It is the #1 Restaurant in Sausalito on TripAdvisor for a good reason.
Ok, this place was amazing! There are such fun little shops, fresh fruit, a carousel, and sea lions. Also, it’s within walking distance from most of the cruise docking ports, so that’s a plus.
Musée Mécanique at Fisherman’s Wharf
This is a warehouse full of old arcade games that were so cool! I never played arcade games growing up, so I felt like I was living my lost childhood there. (Just kidding mom, I had a great childhood!) We spent most of our extra cash just playing around on some classic games and some creepy-looking ones too. Haha.
8 hairpin turns in 1 block. I had no idea this road existed, but it was so cool to see! I would definitely recommend renting a car if you’re gonna do this one so you can drive down it. Or you can walk the stairs on the side like we did. Fair warning though: they aren’t kidding when they say there are A LOT of hills in San Francisco. After eating dessert after basically every meal though, we didn’t mind walking up to the road. We didn’t quite make it up the actual road though. Haha.
Golden Gate Bridge
You’ve seen it in all of the movies featuring San Francisco. You’ve heard all of the cool facts. Now see it in person! The Golden Gate Bridge is pretty famous, so I don’t feel like I have to talk to much about it. I just highly recommend it. Seeing it in person and driving across it is so much cooler than just seeing it in pictures or movies!
There are some excursions that take you to most of these places so you can have more time explore! We did one that took us to the lookout point on the north end of the bay to see the Golden Gate bridge, the Muir Woods, and Sausalito. Super worth it.
The next stop on our Pacific Wine Country west coast cruise was Astoria, Oregon! This cute city sits just at the mouth of the Columbia River and has a lot of great history and nature to explore!
Oregon Film Museum
Josh is such a film buff and this little museum has trivia on all of the fun movies filmed in Oregon. We didn’t actually go in (haha) but if you love movies, especially movies like Goonies and Free Willy, this is a must.
This was AMAZING. I would highly recommend this. It’s free to walk up to it and climb the actual column. The only fee associated with this is parking there, but if you buy the all day transit pass that they offer right when you get off the ship, there IS a bus that takes you up there. They don’t advertise this very well though so we walked and it was SO STEEP. The views up there were so worth it though. On a clear day, you can even see the volcanoes!
Columbia River Maritime Museum
This is such a cool museum to visit. It’s got so much maritime history and a cool little weatherman simulation. Also tons of fun information regarding the ocean and all its attributes.
Next up on the Pacific Wine Country west coast cruise is Victoria, Canada!
PSA, there ARE bike rentals here and I would highly recommend them! We didn’t realize this so we bought a bus pass to and from the boat which was fine, but there is nothing like biking around a city.
Beacon Hill Park
This park is AMAZING. The park was donated to the city on the condition that nothing could be sold on the premises and they’ve stuck to that! It so beautiful and peaceful there. It was such a good place to spend the last afternoon of our cruise.
We walked to this castle (seems to be a pattern with us) but Victoria is fairly flat so this was a breeze in comparison to San Francisco and Astoria. There is so much history in this castle and it’s served the city of Victoria well ever since its occupants left. I would highly recommend going.
I’m all about history and Downtown Victoria’s got it! There’s the Parliament building that is lit up at night, the Inner Harbour, Miniature World, and the Royal BC Museum (Canada’s version of the Smithsonian). There’s also a ton of shops that were so fun to explore.
That’s a wrap on our recommendations for each port on the Pacific Wine Country cruise with Princess Cruises! We had an amazing time and are so excited for the memories and adventures you will have on this cruise!