Traverse City Boat Cruise

Michigan sunsets are some of the best in the world. Without a doubt, any sunset is even better enjoyed from aboard a boat on the lake.

Nauti-Cat Traverse City Boat Cruise Sunset

For my first summer trip back to Michigan in years (and my first to Traverse City), I knew I’d want to do a Traverse City boat cruise at sunset. It was also my fiance’s first time in Michigan in the summer, and I wanted to plan a special Michigander surprise for him.

Traverse City Boat Cruise

I started searching on Groupon, which offers deals throughout the summer. If you can’t find one, contact a Traverse City boat cruise provider directly to see if they’ll offer any discounts.

I picked a discount up on Groupon in July f0r $50 for 2 people, including a champagne toast at sunset. Score!

My Traverse City boat cruise provider of choice was the Nauti-Cat. The dock is located off the main street, and can be accessed through the West Bay Beach Resort Hotel parking lot.Nauti-Cat Traverse City

You’ll need to arrive and check-in at least thirty minutes before the cruise, but you can have a drink on the patio of West Bay Bar while waiting. I’d actually recommend checking in even earlier (maybe an hour or more), and then having dinner and drinks on the patio. There is a decent vegetarian selection (and non-veg of course), the drinks were strong and tasty, and the view of the lake can’t be beat.

A few minutes before cruise takeoff, people will start lining up to get on the boat. It isn’t so important to get in the front of the line, as there are plenty of seats.

Once onboard, you’ll need to pick a place to sit (and pick wisely, as people stuck to their positions). I found that near the front had the best views, both of the water and of the rest of the boat, without other people blocking the scene.

Nauti-Cat Traverse City Boat Cruise Sunset

Make sure to bring a jacket (or two), because the air out on the lake feels at least 10 degrees cooler, and as soon as the sun starts to sink it gets seriously COLD! I brought a light trench coat and wished I would have brought something heavier.

Bundle up, grab a drink (the Cat Nip is the boat specialty but they’ve got a full bar and beer on tap), sit back, relax, and enjoy the awesome Michigan views around you.

Nauti-Cat Traverse City Boat Cruise Sunset

Nauti-Cat Traverse City Boat Cruise Sunset

Nauti-Cat Traverse City Boat Cruise Sunset

Have you ever taken a Traverse City boat cruise? What did you think? Any tips?

Visiting Traverse City soon? My other recommended activities for a Traverse City weekend trip include staying in a B&B, visiting Sleeping Bear Dunes, and taking a winery tour.


A short vacation in Thailand turned into a life abroad with a canceled ticket home. Nearly a decade later and after living in Bangkok, Rio de Janeiro, Puebla, and Puerto Vallarta, Steph is on to her next adventure and living back in beautiful, cosmopolitan Mexico City. She is living, traveling, and working (both as an expat therapist and an international health insurance representative) around the world to find the beautiful, inspirational, and interesting while sharing it with you!

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