cruise ship industry

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Cruise season has begun in the Pacific Northwest with the arrival of gleaming cruise ships. They'll be steaming back and forth to Alaska all summer from Vancouver, B.C. and Seattle. At the beginning and end of the cruise season, those large cruise ships also call on smaller Northwest ports such as Astoria, Port Angeles and Nanaimo, B.C.

Peter McGraw / Port of Seattle

The number of cruise ships sailing to Alaska from Seattle remains down from the peak of two years ago.  In 2010, 223 ships made the trip.  This year, 202 ships will sail from Seattle.  It's a slight uptick from last year when 196 ships used Seattle as a homeport during the summer Alaska cruising season.

The Port of Seattle says  revenue from the cruise business remains strong .