cruise logo Christmas Ship™ Festival

A Northwest Tradition for over 70 years

Argosy Cruises Christmas Ship™ Festival is a ship-to-shore holiday celebration that has been a Northwest tradition since 1949. The Spirit of Seattle™, the Official Christmas Ship™, is decorated with hundreds of shimmery white lights and sails to different Puget Sound waterfront communities – around 40 in all. Choirs on board the Christmas Ship™ perform to guests aboard, to follow boats, and to communities gathered on shore.

Stay tuned for our 2024 schedule & tickets!

Schedule Tickets  Special Events Holiday Store

Three ways to experience the Christmas Ship™ Festival

If your party is larger than 10 people, please call or inquire about a private holiday charter

Take in the holiday magic aboard the official Christmas Ship™, the Spirit of Seattle™, as she sails to various Puget Sound waterfront communities.

Christmas Ship™
Hop aboard the official Christmas Ship™, the Spirit of Seattle™, and visit waterfront communities around Seattle.

This experience includes:

  • 1.5-hour cruise to a waterfront community
  • On board community choir
  • Reading of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas
  • Full-service bar with specialty cocktails, local wine & beer, and non-alcoholic beverages

21+ Follow Boat
The festive, adults-only ugly sweater party is back! Hop on the 21+ boat and follow the Spirit of Seattle to a waterfront community.

This experience includes:

  • 1.5-hour cruise to a waterfront community
  • Broadcast choir performance
  • Photo booth and ugly sweater contest
  • Full-service bar with specialty cocktails, local wine & beer, and non-alcoholic beverages

Learn More

Onshore Event
Welcome the Christmas Ship™ and Follow Boats from a community event on shore and enjoy a 20-minute choir performance broadcasted from the Christmas Ship™. View the complete schedule to see what parks are throwing onshore events.


Special Events

Regular FareSpecial Event Night
Christmas Ship™Christmas Ship™
Adult (13-64)
Senior (65+)
Youth (4-12)
Kid (3 and under)FreeFree
Regular FareSpecial Event Night
Christmas Ship™Christmas Ship™
Adult (13-64)
Senior (65+)
Youth (4-12)
Kid (3 and under)FreeFree

The official Christmas Ship™, the Spirit of Seattle, is a family-friendly holiday experience on the water. When the Christmas Ship™ arrives at the designated parks, the choir on board sings a 20-minute concert which is broadcast to the surrounding boats and people onshore. Santa rides along to entertain, and a cruise director will guide you through the evening. Snacks, pre-wrapped food, and beverages are available for purchase.

The 21+ Follow Boat is another fully decorated Argosy Cruises boat that follows the Christmas Ship™ along the night’s cruise route. It stops with the Christmas Ship™ to hear the choir sing to those on shore as broadcast from the Christmas Ship™. This boat is adults-only and has select availability. View the schedule to find a 21+ event.

The Christmas Ship™ boat set up will be very similar to previous years with seating offered on the first deck and on the second deck in front of the choir. Both areas offer great opportunities to enjoy the festive decorations, hear the choir performances, and have access to a full-bar for food and drink. We also encourage guests to visit the outer decks to enjoy the sights of fellow boaters and onshore bonfires.

The performance will be live on the second deck and be live streaming onto a monitor for those on the 1st deck to watch and listen in.

It is not common, but we do like to warn parents that there may occasionally be more than one Santa on the dock during boarding times when we have multiple Argosy vessels sailing. We have often told our own children that they are Santa’s helpers who dress up and carry his messages, as he cannot be everywhere at once. Please know that there will be only one Santa on board your boat. It is not guaranteed that Santa will be on the Follow Boat.

A full list of our departure locations and parking options can be found on our Christmas Ship™ Departure Locations Page.

Unfortunately, we can’t keep the scheduled performances and hundreds of people waiting. Please arrive with plenty of time to find parking and complete the boarding process. We pull the boarding ramp up promptly at the scheduled departure time.

We recommend wearing warm, comfortable clothing and footwear (we recommend flat shoes that are not smooth-soled, stilettos are very strongly discouraged). Most guests enjoy both the indoor heated decks as well as the outdoor spaces. Please dress accordingly for both as we sail rain or shine. Festive holiday attire is always encouraged! Fun, festive accessories like hats, necklaces, earrings, etc. will be available for purchase onboard.

We recommend flat shoes that are not smooth-soled. While the boats are warm and comfortable, they do rock with the waves they are floating on. If it is raining, the dock and the boat deck can be slippery. Please watch your step and be aware of rainy docks and the motion of the waves.

We are so excited to share some of our favorite holiday drinks and snacks this year aboard the Christmas Ship™. To check out what other goodies we have onboard, view the full menu.

Planning to enjoy food onboard? Pre-order your favorite sandwich, salad, wrap or snack tray during the check-out process to guarantee availability. Then add on to your pre-ordered item with plenty of snacks, sweets, or a cup of Ivar’s Clam Chowder that we have onboard!

The last day to pre-order for your sailing will be the 10 days before your scheduled departure.

Please, no outside food or beverages allowed onboard. The bar will have festive, specialty cocktails, local beer & wine, plus non-alcoholic beverages. Snacks, bites, and chowder will also be available to purchase on board.

If you are part of a group that has booked under separate reservations, check your confirmation letters to ensure you are booked on the same date and time. You can also call to confirm that all parties are on the same boat.

Tickets to our Christmas Ship™ Festival are only sold through the Argosy Cruises website and are not sold on any other platform. Please do not purchase tickets from an anonymous account or resellers. Tickets are not transferable and are under the specific guest’s name.

We only cancel sailings if the mayor or governor declare a state of emergency due to weather or other causes.

Guests who cancel 72 hours or more in advance of their departure date and time will be offered a 50% refund on the total amount paid for their booking (inclusive of taxes/fees). Cancellations less than 72 hours in advance will not be refunded. Future open credits will not be offered for any cancellations.

Group tickets does not apply to the Christmas Ship™ festival. When booking, a MAX of 10 tickets is allowed to be purchased. If you are looking for a holiday activity for your company, please reach out to our private charter department HERE.

Before you depart:

1Book your reservations

2E-pass or print at home

3Board your vessel