Best Boat Tour (2021)


Travelers can choose from myriad iconic water-based experiences in this country, from whale watching excursions and sunset sails to scenic cruises past waterfalls and cliff-backed shores.

  • Chicago Architecture Foundation

    Chicago Architecture Foundation
    Chicago, IL

    The Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady is led by highly trained expert docents. On this ninety-minute cruise, you will hear fascinating details about Chicago, including stories about the people who designed the buildings along the Chicago River. Options include both daylight tours and evening cocktail cruises.
    Photo courtesy of Getty Images

  • Holo Holo Charters

    Holo Holo Charters

    With Holo Holo Charters, visitors to Kauai can sail to the forbidden island of Niihau or cruise along the spectacular Na Pali Coast to see its waterfalls, lush valleys and hidden sea caves from a new perspective.
    Photo courtesy of Holo Holo Charters

  • Laughlin River Tours

    Laughlin River Tours
    Laughlin, NV

    Hop on board a Laughlin River Tour and relive the nostalgic adventure of traveling on a steamboat down the Colorado River. Laughlin River Cruises offers a ninety-minute narrated Scenic Cruise, a two-hour sunset River Boat Dinner Cruise, and a six-hour jet boat tour to the famous London Bridge. These riverboat cruises are the perfect getaway for all members of the family.
    Photo courtesy of Laughlin River Tours

  • CanderĂ© Cruising

    Canderé Cruising

    Boat tours with Canderé Cruising let visitors see seaplane take offs and landings up close, with views from the water of Seattle landmarks like the Space Needle and Fremont Bridge. Options range from an hour long cocktail cruise to a three-hour sunset sail or four-hour tour to see Seattle’s lakefront mansions. This family business offers one of the best ways to experience Seattle's waterways in a unique and affordable way.
    Photo courtesy of Canderé Cruising

  • Red Boat Tours, LLC

    Red Boat Tours, LLC
    St. Augustine, Fla.

    Instead of fighting the crowds of downtown St. Augustine, step aboard the White Pelican for a boat tour of the intracoastal waterway. Red Boat Tours offer a variety of sightseeing cruises, including dolphin watching excursions, BYOB sunset sails and full moon cruises.
    Photo courtesy of Turning Tide Photography

  • Treasure Coast Sailing Adventures

    Treasure Coast Sailing Adventures
    Stuart, FL

    Treasure Coast Sailing Adventures gives passengers the opportunity to travel back in time and enjoy a sail through Florida's Okeechobee River on the wooden Schooner Lily. Guests are offered two-hour public sail charters in the morning, afternoon, and evening, as well as an early morning river cruise with birdlife, dolphins, and a close view of the ecosystem of the Okeechobee waterway.
    Photo courtesy of Treasure Coast Sailing Adventures

  • Blue Ocean Adventure Tours

    Blue Ocean Adventure Tours

    Blue Ocean Adventure Tours unlock the spectacular scenery of Kauai’s Na Pali coast with tours ranging from whale watching excursions to beach landings. Guests get to see the 3,500-foot sea cliffs from the water, visit the Hawaiian fishing village of Nualolo Kai and spot Hawaiian green sea turtles while snorkeling.
    Photo courtesy of Blue Ocean Adventure Tours

  • Waco Tours

    Waco Tours
    Waco, Texas

    A river cruise with Waco Tours comprises 2.5 hours along the serene Brazos River in the heart of Texas. Learn about the history and people of Waco as you see the city from the water and spot local wildlife on the riverbanks.
    Photo courtesy of Waco Tours

  • Redline Rafting

    Redline Rafting

    Redline Rafting’s motto is “half the crowds, twice the adventure.” That’s what you can expect, whether you’re cruising Maui’s Forbidden Coast, snorkeling in Molokini Crater or looking for North Pacific humpback whales who make Maui their winter home.
    Photo courtesy of Redline Rafting

  • Major Marine Tours

    Major Marine Tours

    Major Marine Tours takes visitors into the waters of Kenai Fjords National Park, one of Alaska’s most popular attractions, for the chance to spot whales in Resurrection Bay and see glaciers up close. Full-day cruises include an Alaskan salmon and prime rib buffet.
    Photo courtesy of Major Marine Tours


The top 10 winners in the category Best Boat Tour Company are as follows:  

  1. Chicago Architecture Foundation - Chicago, IL
  2. Holo Holo Charters - Kauai
  3. Laughlin River Tours - Laughlin, NV
  4. Canderé Cruising - Seattle
  5. Red Boat Tours, LLC - St. Augustine, Fla.
  6. Treasure Coast Sailing Adventures - Stuart, FL
  7. Blue Ocean Adventure Tours - Hawaii
  8. Waco Tours - Waco, Texas
  9. Redline Rafting - Hawaii
  10. Major Marine Tours - Alaska

A panel of experts partnered with 10Best editors to pick the initial nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote.

Congratulations to all the winners on the 10Best list!

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AlertThe Experts

Lauren Gay

Lauren Gay

Lauren Gay

Jeremy Clement

Jeremy Clement

Jeremy Clement

Chez Chesak

Chez Chesak

Chez Chesak

Catherine Smith

Catherine Smith

Catherine Smith