A Great Lakes cruise is offered in Duluth, Minnesota, by Vista Fleet Harbor Cruises & Gifts. The Vista Fleet is composed of three different ships. The smallest of these is the 66 foot Vista Queen, next is the 78 foot Vista King and the largest is the 92 foot Vista Star.

The daily cruises and tours are each about 1 ½ hours long. These are lunch and dinner cruises and include a tour around the harbor and a running commentary on the sights given by an experienced guide.

There are a number of other specialty tours that are also offered by the Vista Fleet, these include Mother’s Day Brunch, Father’s Day Beer n’ Brats, Armed Forces Weekend, Blues Cruises, Harvest Festival and Fall Colors Cruises, Halloween Cruises and 4th of July Fireworks Cruises.

Children are welcome on most of the cruises and the prices are reasonable at anywhere from $20 to $60 in 2009 pricing. Of course the prices vary based upon the cruise, with the most expensive being the Fireworks Cruise. There are two locations for the Fireworks cruise; Duluth, Minnesota; and Superior, Wisconsin. The Duluth trip is aboard the Vista Star, the largest of the fleet and includes a prime rib dinner. The Superior trip is aboard the Vista Queen, the smallest of the fleet and includes hors d’oeuvres and a limited Open Bar. Yet a third 4th of July option is added when the Vista King sails from Duluth. This trip is only $30 per person but includes only light snacks and a cash bar.

If you want to try a Great Lakes cruise but you’re afraid you might not like it, or your budget is very small, one of these short “day trips” might be just perfect for you. You can easily test your sea legs without breaking your bank account.

You will find that companies like the Vista Fleet operate in many ports, so if you live anywhere in the area of the Great Lakes, there is probably a cruise company located somewhere near you. The ships these companies operate may have cabins for lodging, or like those of the Vista Fleet, they may be completely converted to passenger seating and dining areas. Either way, these short trips offer a great opportunity to learn about the local harbors and to get on the water and have some fun. At the relatively low price charged for one of these short Great Lakes cruises they also make fun Mother’s or Father’s day, birthday, graduation and wedding presents.

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