Portland Spirit Cruises & Events

Portland Spirit Cruises & Events

Portland Spirit Cruises & Events
4.5
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 2:30 PM
About
Operating a fleet of four boats for public and private events, Portland Spirit offers year-round dining and sightseeing cruises — an experience unlike anything else in Portland, Oregon! Brunch, lunch, dinner and sightseeing cruises offered, in addition to holiday and specialty cruises throughout the year. See the city in a whole new light as you travel up river from the city center to the historic Milwaukie Waterfront. For the adventurous at heart, hop aboard the Explorer Jetboat for an exhilarating experience to the Columbia River Gorge traveling at speeds up to 45 miles per hour. In the summer, enjoy the Bigfoot Adventure and 7 Wonders of the Gorge cruises, as well as Sleigh Rides on select dates in December. The Portland Spirit has been family owned and operated for more than 25 years.
Portland, Oregon

Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Travelers talk about
(93 reviews)
(46 reviews)
(39 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
669 reviews
Excellent
355
Very good
200
Average
74
Poor
27
Terrible
13

placesIveLiked
Palo Alto, CA12 contributions
Sep 2021
The Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler was a very lovely day outing, 10am - 3pm, with 2 very good meals, excellent live narration by the captain (a native of the Gorge area), a trip through a large lock, a good look at the Bonneville Dam area, and plenty of room outside to stand at the rail and watch the Gorge go by. The trip only goes once a week, in the summer, and sells out. Two caveats: we had a beautiful day, sunny and warm with a slight breeze. I'm not sure how the trip would be on a cloudy day. If it's raining there is nowhere to shelter except your assigned dining room, which is completely enclosed with only small, closed, windows. It's big enough for normal times, but with covid-19 still raging it felt crowded and didn't really have 6' between the tables. (Somewhat ridiculously, the staff told us that it was OK not to be masked in the 50 person dining room but to wear masks outside, regardless of the breeze.) If you go - there's a public fish hatchery nearby with an elevator for the salmon diverted from their swim upstream.
Written September 22, 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 cruising with us and for taking the time to leave us a review. We appreciate your feedback so we can continue to improve our service and communication. We hope to have the pleasure of serving you again!
Written November 18, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Sally Ann M
Columbia City,Oregon31 contributions
Sep 2019
Food and entertainment was great and the charity event was a very big hit . The tables were well placed for viewing from inside though most of us were out and about on the decks since it was a beautiful night.
The ship had a great bar ( which could supply any type of drink) and all of the evenings food was good if not excellent. The event had a Irish theme which was well done. I would highly recommend having or booking a fundraiser for a charity on a ship. My husband booked a table and those of us who went loved it . One missed out due to illness but they let us substitute at the last minute. We will certainly go again be in for a fundraiser or just for the heck of it! Parking was no issue .
Written March 5, 2020
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 the wonderful review Sally, it sounds like a lovely evening out on the water. I will pass your comments on to our staff. We hope you will come back soon!
Written March 6, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Michele W
Streatley on Thames, UK60 contributions
Jan 2020 • Friends
We were so fortunate that the weather was NOT as expected. Rain did not arrive until after our cruise, so we were able to enjoy the upper decks between courses... and the weather was a balmy 57 degrees, in January. The service was excellent and attentive. The live piano music was a bonus! My order was mixed up, twice but the food was delicious.
Written January 5, 2020
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.

Lori C
Salem, OR9 contributions
Jun 2021
We went on the Sternwheeler Gorge sight seeing cruise for Fathers day. It was a nice cruise, but the wait to get ANYTHING from the bar was very long... from the time we got on the boat to the time we got off of it. People waiting to order drinks, or get snacks spent over 30 minutes just to order. Who's running the show there? Two servers would have been able to serve twice as many people, and make twice as many sales. Not only paying for the additional person, but making the business much more profit. People don't want to spend their sightseeing cruise waiting for a soda..
Written June 20, 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 taking the time to leave a review Lori, I apologize for the long lines. There are labor shortages across the country, we are no exception. I will pass this review onto our general manager and service manager to hopefully make sure this doesn't happen again.
Written June 30, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Jay Flats
Los Angeles, CA275 contributions
Aug 2021 • Solo
Even on a cloud day this experience on the Willamette River… shines. My solo trip for the lunch toke cruise was well worth the $38 to go sight seeing. Peaceful ride up river with beautiful scenery on both port and starboard sides. Informative history is told during the cruise. Even if you don’t get the food menu they still have 2 bars… and a piano player! I saw several families enjoying their time together celebrating birthdays and anniversaries. Very relaxing and enjoyable. If you have a few hours to spare in Downtown Portland don’t hesitate to take this cruise.
Written August 20, 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 such a wonderful review! Come back soon, next time check out our Sternwheeler in Cascade Locks, the Columbia River is very beautiful!
Written September 9, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Teena W
3 contributions
Jul 2023 • Friends
The tipping structure on the Portland Spirit is confusing at best. Recently I went on a lunch cruise that cost $66.00 per person.  It included the entree and water- no beverage or dessert. (a soda costs $6) Everything else was extra. The cost of a sightseeing tour would have cost $40 per person with no food included.  So that would lead me to believe the meal cost would be approximately $26.00 plus anything extra that was ordered.  Makes sense to me and I'd be willing to tip on that amount but to tip on the whole amount is ludicrous.  
I read in a previous post explaining their twisted reasoning.  It states that  "the gratuity process is distributed to the entire crew who make the cruise possible including the galley, Captain and engineers as well as your servers and bartenders."  What?  Wouldn't you or shouldn't you charge more and just pay your staff the appropriate amount? I understand tipping the restaurant staff because that's customary but over and beyond that I just have a hard time with it.  My husband is an engineer and he doesn't receive tips. lol It just seems like you put that random amount on the check and hope for the best because I'm fairly sure most people feel it is unjust.  Just charge more and pay your staff the appropriate amount and customers won't go away with a bitter taste in their mouths.
I have taken the scenic trip for $40 previously and thoroughly enjoyed it. I would highly recommend that. And BTW no one asked me to tip on that amount. I learned a lot and was excited to try the dining experience. The dining experience was just okay but I wasn't expecting it to wow me. It definitely wasn't a $66 meal....more on the lines of Applebees. However, the piano player was wonderful, the views were great and the dining area presented itself nicely
Written July 12, 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.

Collins M
Vancouver, WA228 contributions
Aug 2022
Four adults with ages from 19 to 82 took a night cruise (7 PM)
We had the marvelous dinners with two of us choosing the salmon and other two the tenderloin.
WOW, NO COMPLAINTS.
All topped with elegant drinks from the bar and soothing live piano music.

Views were as advertised, but to get the full ambiance you must get on the third deck to hear the history of this river and to admire the sun setting down on river banks.
Written August 3, 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 cruising with us and taking the time to share your experience. We're so glad you enjoyed all the amenities of the cruise and the views. Thank you again and we hope to see you on board again in the future!
Written August 5, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

L S
25 contributions
Feb 2022
We took a dinner cruise on the Multnomah River. Food was excellent, service so friendly and live piano player played so many types of songs, which set the mood nicely.

Wasn't too crowded and we got to walk around. From top deck, we could see so much, however, it was dark and only places with lights were visible on the shoreline. Our cruise was in Feb., so a dinner cruise in late spring to fall would have been in the daylight allowing a lot more to see.
Had a cute little gift shop where we bought artistic postcards.

I love boat rides of all types and this one was wonderful.
Written March 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.

Rob B
5 contributions
Jun 2023 • Family
Our family group of twelve couldn't have been happier with our Sunday Brunch cruise. We lucked out with a beautiful weather day, but it's always a pretty sail up and down the Willamette on the Portland Spirit. Our table server was incredibly attentive given the size and diverse requests of our table. And we made multiple trips to the great spread of the buffet table... bonus points for a great carving station. If you're agile enough, head on up to the top deck and check out the city views, spot a dragon boat, or whistle under a bridge. Everyone in the family, from the 8 year old to grandpa absolutely enjoyed the entire cruise.
Written June 21, 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.

CAROLYN T
La Grande, OR3 contributions
Dec 2021 • Couples
The booking process was quick and easy, the rest of the process was not enjoyable. Booked the dinner cruise with the Celebration package. When we arrived there were three boats loading. The guy was yelling out to the crowd to load. We all walked down the ramp only to be told that the boat we were on was not released to board and we had to return to the top of the ramp. This was several groups that had to go back. Once we were finally able to board we were seated and I inquired about getting the items that came with the Celebration package. I was told the package I purchased had changed and I would not be receiving what I paid for. I asked to speak to a manager. When the manager came over he told me I didn't pay for the new celebration package and therefore I would not get the two memory mugs. After going back and forth for ten minutes he finally agreed that yes I had paid for the package. We literally are talking about a $16 difference. It was not about the money but about the principle of it. Move onto the food... TV dinner from the 80s at best. Definitely not worth the cost. The waitress was young and inexperienced. We tried to make the best of the night, all in all skip this one and find a better romantic adventure. Photo is the drink I received vs the photo of what I should have received.
Written December 24, 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 booking a cruise with us. We are disappointed to hear about your experience. That is not our typical boarding process, in fact we like to be ready to board at least 15-20 minutes earlier than the publicized boarding time. We will discuss what happened at our managers meeting to make sure this doesn't happen again. We want our guests first experience with us at boarding to be pleasant and easy and we're sorry that was not the case for you. The recent change in the Celebration package and what is included has been confusing. We apologize for that and glad you were accommodated on board with an upgraded souvenir mug. We have learned some lessons there and will ensure it doesn't happen again in the future. I have shared your comments about the food with our executive chef, bar manager and our general manager. We are always looking for ways to improve our offerings that we make fresh on board each night, and are disappointed to hear it was not to your satisfaction. Staffing has been difficult for us and other locally owned businesses and we continue to work on training the new staff. We appreciate the feedback so we can continue to grow and improve. We hope you'll give us another chance in the future so we can make it up to you with a great experience.
Written December 29, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Showing results 1-10 of 659

Portland Spirit Cruises & Events - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)