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Seattle is known, and really grew, because of it's waterfront. This is a major port, and shipping center, as well as a major landing for a considerable fishing fleet. Seattle is actually closer to Japan, and to China, than it is to New York. In addition to all of this, Seattle is the gateway to Alaska, even to the extent that many Alaskans joke, that the capitol of Alaska is Seattle. This bustling city has not become a major center for cruise ships. Still, with some of today's huge ships, and with the automation of everything, far fewer ports are needed, even for today's increased traffic. As a result, many of the old ports have become centers of commerce, recreation, and tourism. Tour boats, shops, restaurants, and a considerable aquarium, along with a maritime museum, and convention center, now lure visitors to the old docks.

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