Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours

Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours

Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours
4.5
Monday
9:00 AM - 3:30 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 3:30 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 3:30 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 3:30 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 3:30 PM
About
We are sailing into our 65th season with an approximately 90-minute lock tour of the Soo Locks. Cruise beside lake freighters and ocean vessels and see the construction of the new lock as we lock through. Live narration explains the history and sites along the way. Enjoy the scenic shorelines of the U.S. and Canada. We sail rain or shine, with many departures daily. Our fully enclosed, spacious lower level is climate controlled and has a snack bar and restrooms. For a true maritime adventure come aboard our Lighthouse Cruise. Available on a limited basis, our 4.5-hour lighthouse tour has been very popular. Our ticketing system makes it easy to plan your trip and reserve your date and time. You save money when booking online too! We look forward to having you onboard. New this year is our Sip & Sail Cruise. With hearty appetizers and full bar on-board it is a great way to enjoy being out on the water. Check out all our tours online.
Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan

Awards
Travelers' Choice
2023

Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Travelers talk about
(2 reviews)
(5 reviews)
(7 reviews)

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles42 reviews
Excellent
34
Very good
2
Average
3
Poor
1
Terrible
2

Judy B
7 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2022
The entire trip was just wonderful. The crew: Scott, Karie and Jim just made it so enjoyable. Karie's narration was very informative - you can tell she's done this for a while because she really knew her stuff. It was truly amazing to see how the locks work and I would almost take this tour again if I was in the area just to experience the amazing feat of the lock system. I know there are other lock tour operators in the area but I would truly recommend this company because of their adherence to their schedule and the knowledgeable and kind staff.
Written October 18, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank so much for your thoughtful review. We are very proud of our staff and really appreciate your comments about these super employees. We are delighted to know you enjoyed your tour and hope you will come back to cruise with us again.
Written October 23, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

William R
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021
My wife and I are Soo natives but haven't lived there for over 40 years. We try to get back every year or so for a visit and periodically take a tour on the yellow boats of the Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours. We had a wonderful tour last week, which included my son and daughter-in-law. The whole tour was as great as usual, but we especially appreciated the narrator, Deidre Stevens, who turns out to be a local historian. When I approached her with a question, she was friendly, professional, and surprised me with her knowledge!

I highly recommend Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours if you are interested in taking a relaxing, informative and close-up look at the Soo locks!
Written August 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you so much for your recommendation of the Famous Soo Locks Boat Tour. It is wonderful that you return to Sault Ste. Marie and enjoy taking a boat ride with your family. I am so glad you had a chance to visit with Deidre. She has a wealth of knowledge of our area and we are so happy to have her be part of our crew. We appreciate your kind words and 5 Star Review.
Written August 7, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

JanetB
Saline, MI6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2021
Visiting the Soo Locks was always on our bucket list and we thought actually riding through the locks on a boat tour would be the best way to do this. We took the Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours and loved it! Famous was easy to find, right on Portage Avenue next to the Valley Camp Freighter. The staff was super friendly and the 90 minute tour was outstanding. The boat itself was clean and comfortable with seating on the upper deck or lower deck which is good for chilly days - a great view either way. The narrator was well informed and delightful. Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours strikes me as a well established top notch operation. We will be back again, next time with our grandchildren along.
Written May 28, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your thoughtful Five Star Review. We are delighted to know that one of your bucket list experiences met your expectations. We look forward to having you return with your grandchildren.
Written May 29, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

traveler59
Florida182 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2023 • Family
The Famous Soo Locks tour is beyond awful! We went with our nine year old grandson as a special trip for his birthday. About 5 minutes into it, I looked at my husband and said "I think he's bored." My husband said "I'm bored too." Then I said "Me too." The locks are like watching a 10,000,000 gallon bathtub fill up for 15 minutes. The boat is very old and grimy and the seats are uncomfortable and the scenery is terrible. The food offerings are packaged chips, candy and crackers other than the popcorn which was cold and very salty and not buttered. It would be a good place to take a nap if it weren't for the noise. Terrible family activity as all of the kids were either crying or running around out of boredom. Nothing against the staff because there's nothing to look at or do. If you enjoy looking at piles of coal and rusty steel mills and pollution, this will be your paradise. We felt like we were in prison for two hours and couldn't wait to get out. At one point the guide said the next highlight was in 15 minutes so enjoy the time until then. We didn't enjoy the 15 minute gap. It was worse than awful. The best part was getting off. They blocked us from escaping but luckily my husband and grandson were the first to safely return to the mainland. My grandson was jumping with excitement when we saw the tour dock in our view. The employees did a good job attempting to make a boring trip fun but it just didn't work out. The Valley Camp nearby is good but overall if you can avoid going to Sault Set Marie, highly recommend that you find a different destination. Really not much going on in the whole area. The highlight of our evening afterwards was us laughing about how terrible it was. It was an amazing place if you like to learn about old steel mills. The boat is slow - there were a couple times that the boat rubbed against the wall in the locks and heaven help the passenger who might have had an errant hand beyond the rail at that point! Avoid at all costs totally boring
Written July 10, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
I am sorry the boat tour was not enjoyable for your grandson and you. I can understand looking for activities that your grandson might enjoy can be stressful. Our boat tour strives to make your tour enjoyable and I am sorry you’re expectations we’re not met. As you noted our staff tried to make it positive for you.
Written July 10, 2023
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Ann M
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2021
Wonderful tour! From the moment we boarded till we docked, the trip could not have been better. It is the perfect way to see the locks and understand how they operate. The narrator was excellent – very knowledgeable and willing to answer all questions. Traveling beside the huge lake freighters was fantastic - a fun trip with a great crew! We will be back for the Lighthouse Tour!
Written May 28, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We greatly appreciate your 5 Star Review and look forward to seeing you again one of our Lighthouse Cruises.
Written May 28, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Indy-ND
South Bend, IN3,563 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021
We showed up to our tour about 30 minutes ahead of schedule, so we poked around the gift shop and got a snack for the boat. We headed down to the dock about 10 minutes before the departure time and watched the boat come in from the previous time slot. It was an organized arrival and departure.
Once we were off, we had a little wait before it was our turn to enter the locks, so we came up alongside a few freighters, checked out the locks towards the Canadian side, got a lot of interesting facts about the Canadian side, and then watched a boat pull along side a freighter to send their grocery/supply order over. Then came past the power plant until it was finally or turn to use the locks.
We entered and roped up with the other lock tour company behind us. It doesn't seem to take long to raise and less time to lower.
Once we were through to the west side, we learned about the new lock being built, the
Written October 13, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We are so glad to hear you enjoyed your boat tour through the Soo Locks. Thank you for your informative 5 Star Review.
Written October 15, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

dreamspeaker
Middleton, WI461 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2022
I've visited Sault Ste Marie before and been on this tour before when I was younger, so this time I brought my husband and daughter. They could not understand the appeal as we were boarding. It was fun to watch their tune change as the tour progressed. They enjoyed seeing Canada's shore, seeing freighters pass us and hearing the stories about them (continually impressed that the crew has all the information about these freighters at hand and can tell us about them), and the situation with the locks. By the time we were going through the locks, family was tickled to be on the tour.... so I win!
I love going through the locks, even if it takes a long time between waiting for the lock to open up and waiting to go up or down. And it was extra great to have a crew that was laughing and having a good time with us.
Thanks for another great tour!
Written July 30, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your wonderful review. We are so glad your family now agrees with you that it is a fun family experience to travel through the Soo Locks. We loved your review and will share it with our crew. They are a super group and we are pleased when others recognize their spirit. We appreciate your 5 Star Review!
Written August 9, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

susanrL1721ZD
Keene, NH87 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2022
A great tour. I had never experienced going through a lock before and this was both interesting and informative. The narration was exceptional; very informative and the speakers were so clear you could hear and understand it all. Watching the gates open and close, the boom go up and down and the water levels change was really interesting. Would highly recommend a tour with the Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours if in the area.
Written June 11, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We greatly appreciate your 5 Star review and your interesting review of our boat tour. We love that you rated Famous Soo Locks Tour with 5 stars. Thank you.
Written June 25, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

ljretires
Middletown, NY134 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022
There was alot of information given out as we passed things. Our problem was the Soo Locks were booked up and we were suppose to be out for 2 hours but since we didn't get to go thru the locks we were out longer. Once we went through we actually had to turn around right away otherwise it could of been another two hour wait. So all in all we did get to go through the locks and it was a four hour trip and not 2 hours.
Written June 21, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thanks so much for your understanding with the delayed trip. It has been challenging at times when there is a lot of freighter traffic to keep our tours to an on time return. Once we are allowed again in the Canadian lock this will not be a problem. We appreciate your 5 Star review.
Written June 25, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

nicholas40
Beau Vallon, Seychelles50 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2023 • Couples
Be aware if you take this tour that it may run very late. Our tour was 1/2 hour late departing and took an hour more than it should have done for the actual trip. This was because of waiting for other boats to fit into the locks . Not necessarily the trip’s fault but it should be made clear at booking if you are on a schedule and need the trip to run to time. Plus sitting in a lock going nowhere and breathing in diesel fumes isn’t my idea of fun.
Written September 9, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We are sorry your tour had delays. We take pride in keeping with the boat schedule, but there are times that we do have unexpected delays due to shipping traffic. The day you were visiting we had two large cruise ships plus the normal freighter traffic. Many of our customers love this as they get to see many ships up close, but I understand delays are not fun when they are unexpected. I hope you enjoyed the rest of your time in our community.
Written September 13, 2023
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Showing results 1-10 of 41

Famous Soo Locks Boat Tours - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

All Sault Ste. Marie HotelsSault Ste. Marie Hotel DealsLast Minute Hotels in Sault Ste. Marie
All things to do in Sault Ste. MarieTours & Activities in Sault Ste. Marie
RestaurantsFlightsVacation RentalsTravel StoriesCruisesRental Cars