The Great Lakes Region is known for spectacular fall colors and what better way to view them than from the deck of a luxury cruise ship? Lakes Superior, Michigan, Huron, Ontario and Erie offer the largest single body of fresh water in the world, containing 1/5 of the world’s supply. Along the shores of these behemoth lakes, grow groves of maple, aspen, cherry and oak that all combine to offer breathtaking fall scenery.

There are many companies, both U.S. and Canadian, that offer Great Lakes Cruises. You can find everything from small boats that go out for an afternoon’s trip, to large liners that may cover 6500 miles or more and take you from Niagara Falls to the far Western Corner of Lake Superior. In fact, it is shorter to cross the Atlantic than to go down the length of the Great Lakes.

Prices for Great Lakes cruises may be higher than they would be for a driving tour, but with a cruise, you take your hotel room with you, and the meals are always ready. The boats that cruise the Great Lakes are generally much smaller than those that provide ocean cruises, so you probably won’t have a bunch of shops, a pool or a casino on board. You will have ample staterooms, great food, beautiful sunsets and sunrises, the gorgeous coastline and the quiet relaxation of a lakes voyage. The pace is often modest on a Lakes cruise, with time for the passengers to get to know the crew.

As a general rule, the cost of a cruise will be much lower on a smaller boat that only goes out for short tours. These smaller boats are sometimes ferries that run from the mainland to the various islands. Even these low cost runs can be relaxing and entertaining. They sometimes include walking tours of the islands, and a few even include dinner either on board the boat or on shore.

The Lake islands are often only lightly inhabited and almost untouched. They are usually heavily covered with hardwoods and brightly colored in the fall. A very few have lodging, restaurants and other facilities.

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