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“Aurora Borealis Harbour Cruise” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Toronto Harbour Cruises

Toronto Harbour Cruises
333 Lakeshore Boulevard East, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
(416) 260-5555
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Fee: Yes
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Aurora Borealis Harbour Cruise”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013

Boarding the boat was a shock. Very dirty, terrible smell, and creaky floors. The man in charge looked as if he had never washed his clothes. Beautiful scenery of the skyline, but that was about it. We had asked for water during our meals, but were lied to when we were promised a bottle each. We then had to pay 3$ per bottle of water just to wash down our terrible soggy meals. COMPLETE WASTE OF MONEY! We had danced to try and get rid of the negative vibe, but overall, I would highly recommend that you do NOT waste your money on this lie. Also, we were promised a beautiful view of the fireworks (we went on Canada Day), again, that was also a false promise. Very disappointing.

Visited July 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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134 reviews from our community

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English first
Thornhill, Canada
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
17 attraction reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Dinner Cruise”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 27, 2013

The wife and I were booked for the Aurora Borealis. When we walked up to the pier, we were told that the Aurora Borealis was under renovation and that our cruise was transferred to the older Stella Borealis. Chairs were uncomfortable so we chose a bench seat to fix that problem. Dinner was good...pasta, chicken, caesar salad and bread roll. Drinks - water, juice etc. not included. Had to buy bottle of water and small solo cup of Coke - $5 in total. Cruise director said that they had to make a profit somehow. Isn't water an essential to eating a meal at the very least? 3 hour cruise...took us around Hanlan's Point/IYC area and back. Nice weather. Second floor was used for groups...not much to see there. We stayed on the first floor and deck area for the most part.

Visited June 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vaughan, Ontario, Canada
Top Contributor
64 reviews 64 reviews
21 attraction reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
“Bait And Switch - June 26, 2013”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 27, 2013

Last night we were suppose to go on the Aurora Borealis for a dinner cruise. Instead of the originally booked boat they ended up putting us on the much older Stella Borealis. The person in charge told us that the other boat was being renovated. I suspect that they didn't have enough passengers to fill that boat so they put us on the older smaller one. We had booked our special anniversary dinner through Groupon and thank goodness didn't pay full price for it.

The boat was ok but it was very old. We ate at folding tables and sat in plastic garden chairs. They tried to make it look nice by putting a black table cloth over the tables but nothing short of a renovation was going to make that boat look nice. Our dinner was caesar salad, a choice of dinner rolls, pasta primavera and/or chicken breast. Later on they served dessert of different kinds of cookies (chocolate chip, Linzer and merangue) and a chocolate square, tea and coffee. What really irked me was that you had to buy all of your drinks. You couldn't even have a glass of water with your dinner. My husband had to spend an additional $5 for a tiny cup of Coke (if you have to pay that much for Coke why not give him the whole tin) and a bottle of water. It was disgusting.

The boat was docked right beside the old Captain John's restaurant with no signage that it was even there. It took us a while to figure out how to get to it with all of the construction fencing around the area. There is parking in the lot right by the boat for $15.

All in all, the food was ok and the views of the Toronto Harbour were really beautiful but most of the reviews here are spot on. All I can say is thank goodness we had amazing weather.

Visited June 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Relax people- it's not that bad... Honest, realistic review!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 10, 2013

Ok, so I want to start off by saying that after already purchasing my dinner cruise months back to take my girlfriend for her birthday - I stumbled on this site looking for directions on how to get there.

After paying for the cruise for 2 using a groupon and paying the taxes and gratuity I was about $90 in. I was about to cut my losses and abort my whole birthday plan for her after reading these reviews- in fear the boat was gonna look old, the food would suck, and everything else people were complaining about. Without telling her what the birthday plans were, she still insisted we still do it and make the most out of whatever it was- and worst case, if we had to stop at McDonald's on the way home- so be it.

So we parked and walked over to the ship just after 5:30pm when the doors opened, very quick to cast judgement from the second I got on after reading what I read. Music was already playing, as we got on- and made our way upstairs where there was already maybe 60-70 people sitting down snatching up all the window seats. We ended up sitting at the end of a table for 8, which was just fine. Was private enough to talk even with people near us. Everyone seemed in a good mood ready for fun- dressed up, and 2 stagette parties of 8+ girls. Mixed ages, couples, families, etc.

We were given coloured dinner cards to avoid a mass rush for food. Our colour was called last but made no difference - the food was what I expected. Chicken was the kind you'd find at a lower end banquet hall- but in no means terrible like I read, the Caesar salad was good- penne was so so, but all in all I'm not complaining at all!

The actual boat tour was really nice- again, not anything as described previously on here. We went all through and around centre island, and across the city skyline a few times.. Took some pictures, took in the scenery, and listened to the music as the dj played the entire 3 1/2 hours ( by the way, I know it says disco party, but they played everything throughout the night and was very fun!)

If anything that I read was accurate, it was that the music was actually very loud for such a smaller dance space, but from where we stood outside taking in the views- it was great, and people on the island seemed to enjoy it too as we passed.

As I mentioned, there were quite a few couples, so if you are planning on going with your partner I think it's great. Some looked like they anticipated it almost like a booze cruise- a place to pick up, and I didn't get that vibe. So if you're a couple of singles with that impression- I'd say try a different type of ship/venue. And to piggy back on the booze, it's not any more expensive than a regular bar or club price wise. $6.75 isn't cheap for a carona- but it's also not unheard of. Same with mixed drinks- the cups may be smaller but the alcohol is free- poured and close to an ounce.

This is my first time ever writing a review, and almost felt compelled to after the fact- because these reviews here almost cost me $100 in not going and doing something else. Would I spend the money regular price? Probably not. Are there nicer ships and better food? Of course- at a more expensive price tag. But if you're looking for an honest 30-something year olds opinion of this outing, I'd say we had a great time - so find out for yourself and don't let the reviews scare you off!

Visited June 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Birthday Cruise”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 2, 2013

IF YOU PLAN TO GO ON THIS CRUISE, YOU SHOULD KNOW THAT DRINKS (including water) WILL NOT BE INCLUDED IN THE LUNCH/DINNER menu. You will have to pay for a child size cup for pop or water...Seating was horrible, its basically first come first serve and you'll be crammed up with other strangers so do know you will have no privacy at all. Food was supposed to be a 3-course meal but you basically have it all served on one plate like a buffet style. I would highly recommend you taking the ferry to centre island, even that would be a better option than going on this lousy cruise ever again. Within 30 minutes, more than half the people on the cruise got bored and wanted to head back to shore.

Visited June 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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