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“Trip to Dry Tortugas on Yankee Freedom III” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Yankee Freedom III

Yankee Freedom III
Lands End Marina, Key West, FL 33040
800-634-0939
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Ranked #41 of 326 Activities in Key West
Type: Boat Tours, Sightseeing Tours
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Attraction details
Owner description: Discover the eighth wonder of the world aboard the Yankee Freedom II Dry Tortugas National Park Ferry. Cruise in spacious comfort to Fort Jefferson Dry Tortugas National Park seventy miles southwest of Key West. Our veteran captain and friendly crew will take you to one of the most unique and spectacular national parks in the United States. Your trip includes breakfast, lunch, snorkel gear and guided tour of the largest brick structure in the United States.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Plant City, Florida
1 review
“Trip to Dry Tortugas on Yankee Freedom III”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2013

We traveled on Thursday, May 23, 2013 & had a great time! The weather was fantastic. Boat was clean and very spacious. We were to capacity and still had lots of room. Crew spoke about the waters and surroundings going to the Fort. Breakfast & Lunch were great! Restrooms were very clean. We took the tour of the Fort,in which one of the crew led and gained a ton of knowledge from his tour. We have recommended this to all our friends and people we meet! Great Day on the Water!!

Visited May 2013
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Chicago, Illinois
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Skip this trip!!! Beware....”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2013

We went on this awful trip on July 1, 2013 and it was just horrible! What started out as something I was looking forward to during my time in the Florida Keys turned out to be a disaster.
One hour into our trip it started to rain and really big swells started tossing our boat around and some people fell going to the restroom. About 60% of the people on the boat became seasick and were vomiting in these small white bags handed out by the staff, who, also were taking out the food for lunch. People were puking in the same room that they were setting out the food in! It was disgusting.
The trip back was even worse with more people puking and the staff handing out more bags. The swells were so big and our boat would literally go up in the air and slam down. We had to stay seated for safety reasons. The skies were gray, the water was almost black and we really feared for our safety. We could not get off that boat fast enough when we docked.

I know that some people would say, "well, you can't control the weather", but we found out later that there was a small craft advisory, and apparently "yankee freedom" didn't really care about that. Complaints to the company when we got home fell on deaf ears with no response. My thought is that you rely on the captain of this boat to be a professional and make an informed decision based on weather and water craft advisories to ensure the safety of the customers in his care - even if that means having to cancel the excursion because of weather conditions! However I did not get the sense that this company gave a hoot as long as they got your $164 per person fee ahead of time (yes, it is that expensive).

Beware if you go on this trip because you have to cancel at least 24 hours ahead of time and there is no guarantee that you will see anything when you get to Dry Tortuga. When we got to the island, it was drizzling and cold. The fort is old and crumbling and there is a lot of walking if you take the tour. The ground is unkempt and uneven and may not be suitable for those with mobility problems. The snorkeling was non-existent, and we could only attempt to snorkel on one side of the island because the wind was so bad. The currents were strong and the only thing I saw was seaweed. The south beach was rocky and the strong winds made it impossible to sit because the wind was whipping the sand at your skin and face, there are picnic tables, but no covered areas.

When we got back on the boat, we were cold and wet and we asked the staff if they could shut down the AC or warm up the cabin, they said no, they couldn't adjust the temperature, so we sat in a cold, air conditioned room with damp bathing suits/clothing on. They also ran out of some food which only consisted of sandwiches, chicken salad with a hair in it, and chips. After seeing people vomiting right across the aisle from where I was sitting, I did not really have much of an appetite.

I was really hoping that my excursion would have been as pleasant as those reviews I read about previously on Trip Advisor, but I would use caution in deciding to go on this excursion. You might be better off going on a nearby snorkel trip that is likely much less expensive and cares about its customers. If you are planning to take this trip make sure you are not prone to sea sickness, however I strongly advise you to skip this horrible trip.

Visited July 2013
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Atlanta, Georgia
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Wonderful trip to Dry Tortugas on Yankee Freedom III”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2013

Traveled in early June 2013 during short family trip to Keys. Made advance reservations and found check-in flawless. Beautiful and smooth ride over. Perfect weather. Ample inside seating as well as space outdoors to enjoy the breeze. Good continental-plus breakfast. Arrived at the fort on time, enjoyed exploring and snorkeling, returned to boat for nice lunch, then off again to swim and tour. At end of trip took advantage of the rinse off shower, found a nice cool booth inside, got delicious fru-fru drinks (very reasonably priced), some salty snacks and stretched out for the lovely ride back. Very pleased with the services of the crew, the ship, the amenities and the destination. What an incredible experience, and we were so well cared for. Plan on returning with other family members who could not come. My son brought fishing gear and had a great time, and caught some big fish right from the shore and dock. The snorkeling was incredible,as was walking the sea wall and watching he beautiful tropical fish.

Visited June 2013
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Dayton, Tennessee
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Trip to the Dry Totugas with the Yankee Freedom III”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2013

My husband and I spent a week in the Florida Keys in April. We stayed in Marathon and using that as our base and ventured out to do a little island hopping. We new we wanted to go out to the Dry Tortugas. The fee is a little pricey but the experience is priceless! We had a wonderfull time. The crew was awsome. We had a delicious buffet breakfast and lunch. There are several areas of the boat you can go to enjoy the ride. It is a long trip about three hours each way. But, we used it to get to know other passengers and to catch up on some reading. We took our beach umbrella,a beach chair, a couple of towels and a small cooler of drinks & snacks. The crew was more than happy to store our umbrella and chair and made it avilable when it was time to use. My husband went snorkeling and I sat on the sandy beach area and watched the sea planes come in. The tour of the fort was informative and we took some great pictures! Thank you Yankee Freedom for a unforgettable experience!!!!

Visited April 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wien, Österreich
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Day-trip to the Dry Tortugas”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2013

70 miles, even with a fast boat, is quite a long distance. You get a good breakfast when you start the trip earlly in the morning, About 50 minutes before arriving, the crossing of a deep-sea channel is announced, and even the sea does optically not change it gets really bumpy (and you hopefully don't get seasick). After this hurdle you arrive in a very deserted beautiful place with the large fort, waiting to be explored on your own or with a park-guide. At noon a small lunch is proveded. On one side of fort is a sandy beach, which can be used for swimming and snorkling. As we were there (the day before was stormy) the water was very sandy and we haven't seen even one fish. Bad luck. The return cruise turned out to be more convenient, as the channel now was crossed in the other direction and in another angle. The price for the trip ia quite high, but it is worth of it.

Visited April 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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