Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is home to the world’s largest body of freshwater in the entire world — Lake Superior. Covering approximately 31,700 square miles and reaching depths of over 1,300 feet, visitors and U.P. locals alike are drawn to this massive attraction. Its miles of beach shoreline are popular destinations in the summer for a refreshing dip in its chilly waters. Come fall, locations along the coast are filled with award-winning, breathtaking fall color. But the exploration doesn’t stop there. See this Great Lake’s natural waters, shipwrecks and explore its expansiveness with these Lake Superior cruises and boat tours!
Pictured Rocks Cruises
An awe-inspiring natural phenomena — this cruise along the southern shore of Lake Superior by the world famous Pictured Rocks is sure to be a highlight of your vacation.
Extending almost 20 miles eastward from Munising, the complete colorful expanse of forest-topped rocks can only be seen by boat. Miner's Castle, Battleship Rock, Indian Head, Lover's Leap, the Color Caves, Rainbow Cave and Chapel Rock are only a few of the breathtaking sights which can be seen from the water. Miss Munising, Miner's Castle, Pictured Rocks, Grand Island and the Miss Superior vessels were built especially for the Pictured Rocks trips and are equipped for your comfort and relaxation to further enhance this delightful 2 ½-to-3-hour narrated cruise. Boats run through early October.
Mix thrill and sightseeing all in one! The Riptide Ride goes at high speeds with 360-degree spins and hairpin turns, but you also get to cruise alongside 25 miles of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore along Grand Island. The 90-minute tour includes photo op stops and narration of the lakeshore’s colorful rock formations, two lighthouses and cascading waterfalls. This up close view is not one you want to miss.
Glass Bottom Shipwreck boat tours
One of the most extraordinary adventures that you’ll ever experience, this two-hour, narrated tour gives you the history and an unbelievable perspective on the shipwrecks from decades past. Viewing through glass wells on the bottom of the boat, you’ll see two actual shipwrecks pass only feet below and ancient relics that rest on Superior’s cold, rock bottom.
Above the water, visitors will see beautiful rock formations and historic landmarks like the famous East Channel Lighthouse.
Grand Island Cruises
Enjoy a 2.5-hour scenic cruise around Grand Island. The Cruise is located 3 miles west of Munising on Highway M-28 next to the Duck Pond Restaurant and Beer Garden. Open Memorial weekend through the end of September, this scenic cruise includes historic lighthouses, waterfalls, sea caves and a history of the scenic Grand Island National Recreation Area. Plus, your ticket includes a complimentary meal from the Duck Pond Eatery and Beer Garden which you can bring on the tour.
Isle Royale Ferries
Isle Royale National Park is a remote destination surrounded by Lake Superior. It’s the perfect place to go to reconnect with nature. However, it takes some planning to visit since you can only reach it by seaplane or ferry. There are two ferries if you choose that route. The Ranger III journeys a six-hour, one-way trip from Houghton, or you can opt for a shorter ride just over three hours long from Copper Harbor aboard the Isle Royale Queen IV.
The gorgeous views begins when you depart. As you approach the island, you can actually feel its warmth and smell the earth and vegetation. For ferry users who do not often travel long distances over water, this experience is quite unique and memorable.
Keweenaw Boat Tours
Experience the ultimate tour of the Keweenaw Waterway that only Keweenaw Boat Tours can provide. Choose from a variety of options!
Jacobsville Lighthouse and Sandstone Cliffs
The Lighthouse Cruise is a popular option that includes the historic Jacobsville Lighthouse and stunning sandstone cliffs that were formed millions of years ago.
Superior Sunset Cruise
This awe-inspiring tour is for those who prefer an evening ride. It’s an an ideal choice to savor the scenic beauty while enjoying the sunset over Lake Superior.
The Keweenaw Adventure
Brand new for 2023, this tour takes you from Lac La Belle to Keystone Bay, at the tip of the Keweenaw Peninsula. This tour showcases a remote section of the Keweenaw Peninsula that can only be witnessed by boat.
Each tour lasts for approximately 2.5 hours, and there are restrooms available along the way. The Keweenaw Explorer, a 25-foot cabin cruiser, has a bathroom onboard, and you can bring your own snacks and drinks. As this is a private tour, your booking party will be the only party on the boat!
Soo Locks boat tours
When you visit Sault Ste. Marie, you can choose to watch freighters passing through the Soo Locks, or you can take a tour through them yourself! There are two touring companies to choose from.
Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours
Operating since 1959, Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours offers a variety of cruises aboard its iconic yellow and blue tour boats. Experience a 90-minute tour through the Soo Locks, the world’s largest parallel locking system that resolves the 21-foot variance between Lake Huron and Lake Superior. During the summer months, the lighthouse cruise is a memorable, educational and relaxing maritime adventure.
Original Soo Locks Boat Tours
Experience locking through the Soo Locks followed by a cruise right alongside the massive Great Lakes freighters on the beautiful St. Mary's River.
Experience our other boat-based tours
Once you finish exploring Lake Superior, consider some of these boat tours, ferries and other cruises around the Upper Peninsula!
- Portage Canal Tour
- Mackinac Island ferry - Bridge tours (Star Line and Shepler’s)
- Les Cheneaux boating excursions
- St. Mary’s River Lighthouse Cruise
- Year-round Drummond Island Ferry
Book your stay!
Start planning your boating getaways — and book stays in those Lake Superior shoreline cities in advance. It’s time to set sail!