We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Sponsored by:
Map
Satellite
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Sponsored by:
Get directions
Address: Fairbanks, AK 99709
Phone Number: +1 866-479-6673
Website
Today
7:00 am - 6:00 pm
Open now
See all hours
Hours:
Sun - Sat 7:00 am - 6:00 pm
Description:

More than just a boat ride! Board the Sternwheeler Riverboat Discovery for...

More than just a boat ride! Board the Sternwheeler Riverboat Discovery for one of the most unique Alaskan experiences available! This three-hour cruise will take you into the heart of Alaska and introduce you to a family who has made the rivers of Alaska a way of life for five generations. You will see a bush floatplane takeoff alongside the boat, visit the home and kennels of the late four-time Iditarod winner Susan Butcher and see her champion sled dogs in action. Be immersed into the ancient Athabascan Indian culture when our Alaskan Native Guides take you on a personalized tour of the Chena Indian Village.

read more

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 1,037 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 653
    Excellent
  • 274
    Very good
  • 59
    Average
  • 18
    Poor
  • 12
    Terrible
Mandatory!

What a fabulous surprise! The paddlewheel tour was total immersion into regional culture. From watching sled dogs enthusiastically waiting to be hitched up to native descendants... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed yesterday
Janice A
via mobile

Similar Things to Do in Fairbanks

Add Photo Write a Review

1,037 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
  • More
Showing 1,016: English reviews
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW via mobile

What a fabulous surprise! The paddlewheel tour was total immersion into regional culture. From watching sled dogs enthusiastically waiting to be hitched up to native descendants describing their ancestors' lifestyle, this tour was a winner. Don't miss it.

Helpful?
Thank Janice A
Midlothian, Virginia
Level Contributor
75 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

We went on the Discovery III as part of a pre-booked tour thru Princess Cruises and probably wouldn't even have visited Fairbanks on our own, let alone gone on the sternwheeler had we planned the trip ourselves. However, the boat ride offered a variety of glimpses of Alaskan life, with the bush pilot, Chena Village and dog kennels. All of... More 

Helpful?
Thank Booklover48
Charleston, South Carolina
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

An absolutely wonderful excursion and experience!!! Lots of history, great photo ops, well organized and lots of fun!! This paddle-wheel river boat is the real thing and the journey up and down the river gives the visitor an up close and personal introduction to interior Alaska waterway living, the life of an Alaskan bush pilot, the famous Alaskan dog-sled team... More 

Helpful?
Thank ThomasSC53
New Holland, Ohio
Level Contributor
28 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

We went on the excursion our first day in Alaska and it got the trip started on the right foot. The riverboat cruise was neat by itself, but the attractions on the shore made it even better. We got to see Susan Butcher's Ididarod kennel and they put on a demonstration. We were able to get off the boat and... More 

Helpful?
Thank MemeDolphin
Brunswick, Georgia
Level Contributor
399 reviews
115 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 125 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

What a fun time. The riverboat is powered by the paddle wheel. This is more than a jaunt up the river. We learned about sled dogs and sledding from a musher, we learned about native peoples from a group we visited off the boat, and we learned about bush pilots from a bush pilot who demonstrated a takeoff and landing... More 

Helpful?
Thank Vickie S
Davie, Florida
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

Excellent afternoon! This was an included excursion with our Celebrity cruise tour package and expected a typical cruise along the Chena river- this experience is so much more! The staff are friendly, knowledgeable and the lead commentator interacted with select shore sites through a microphone. We watched a bush plane land and take off on the water and then listened... More 

Helpful?
Thank dzengenv
Arizona
Level Contributor
33 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

Very good tour with presentations along the shore and river - float plane takes off and lands right next to riverboat. Also see dog sled teams and native village. Boat has system of talking directly to pilot, dog musher and girl at village preparing salmon and projecting on TV screens and over audio system. Presentations are so close to boat... More 

Helpful?
Thank highpines
Collegeville, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
137 reviews
48 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

This authentic River Paddle Boat takes you on scenic tour of the River. Guides will inform you of the area and history along the banks. A stop at a reconstructed village is a great way to understand how early settlers survived the harsh environments. Another highlight was a visit to the Idijarod dog sled winners kennel. Susan Butcher's daughter succeeds... More 

Helpful?
Thank osborner
Level Contributor
24 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

This was my favorite Land tour Fairbanks in Fairbanks, climb on board and help yourself to all the fresh homemade donuts and coffee you like, they are provided. Be sure to get a seat on the right side of the boat as you go down the river most of the attractions are on that side. The settle in and get... More 

Helpful?
Thank Greg l
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 days ago NEW via mobile

We had a very knowledgeable captain with lots of rich historical information. We enjoyed the trip and the stops. The younger crew were enthusiastic, sharing their knowledge and culture freely. Excellent way to spend a morning. Complimentary blueberry donuts were also a great plus. Learning about Susan Butcher and her Iditarod history was fascinating. This was part of a Holland... More 

Helpful?
Thank Helen S

Travelers who viewed Riverboat Discovery also viewed

 

Been to Riverboat Discovery? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Riverboat Discovery and other visitors
11 questions
Ask a question

See all questions (11)

Questions? Get answers from Riverboat Discovery staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
  • How should I dress for this tour?