Small ship cruises offer several advantages, and one of the most important is affordability. Often, you can book excursions that last only a few hours and these trips can be both fun and inexpensive.

Unlike cruises on the floating islands that pass for ocean going cruise ships, cruises on the Lakes are often on much smaller ships. While the smaller craft may not have all of the entertainments that larger ships do, there are many other advantages to touring on smaller craft.

For instance, cruises on small ships are often of much shorter duration, some lasting only a few hours and others a day or two. These mini adventure cruises are often themed; some are centered on a fabulous meal, others around live music and dancing, or perhaps fireworks, a wine tasting trip, an ice cream social, or an educational trip. There are even glass bottom boat trips available. These are fantastic opportunities to meet other people and enjoy an afternoon on the water, and the cost of these short trips is usually very affordable. Many two or three hour cruises are under $50 per passenger and a few are under $40.

Even longer luxury cruises on the Great Lakes are on ships much smaller than most ocean going ships. These cruises stop at multiple ports along the lake shore and offer passengers the opportunity to visit everything from small harbor towns full of history to large metropolises. You can go antiquing in a quaint village with roots from prior centuries or visit the museums and restaurants of some of the largest cities in the region.

Day excursions offer the opportunity to see some of the wild life that so abundantly fills the area. Even the shore line itself can be a delight, from the rocky coasts of the far northern shores to the low sand dunes of Michigan. The shoreline is clothed in emerald green in spring and summer and often in blazing red and orange in the fall.

For an adventure cruise you might consider a dinner or fireworks trip on one of the tall ships that sail the area. There are tall ship opportunities on every one of the Great Lakes and these are often some of the best of the low cost cruises available. Often the cost of an excursion on a tall ship is not much more than that on a conventional vessel and the tall ship offers one great advantage–you will have a wonderful memory and pictures worth showing your friends. Not only that, most of them will be interested enough to be willing to hear all about your trip.

So if you have ever been afraid to consider a cruise vacation because you think they are too expensive, why not consider a small ship cruise on the Great Lakes? These low cost cruises are fun and can be worked into your regular vacation as an afternoon activity.

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