Spent 4th of July weekend in the area. It was a last minute trip, so able to get an inexpensive room in Watertown at the Travelodge. They allow pets and we had our little Boston Terrier.
Arrived Saturday afternoon, left the pooch in a nice air conditioned room, and headed to Alexandria Bay for an Uncle Sam's cruise. We took the 2.25 hour Natrions cruise, that travels across the Canadian waters. The little islands were so interesting. Some were just large enough for a small house and a tree.
We made an optional stop at Boldt's Castle for an hour. It was a nice little getaway and retreat from the hustle and bustle of Alexandria Bay. But we had to return to get back to the car. Alexandria Bay is one of those touristy places with restaurants and souvenoir stores. It can get extremely hectic, as we found out the next day on the 4th. I'm glad we left our dog at the hotel because some of the dogs we had seen looked rather uncomfortable.
The next morning, we took our pooch to the nature trail of Wellesly Island State Park, the largest US Island in the area. It was just across the bridge from Alexandria Bay. We took a wonderful, scenic hiking trail. It was so nice and cool, we did not want to leave. However, I had purchased tickets for the Fireworks cruise through Uncle Sam's again. So, we made the 30 minute journey back to Watertown to return the pooch, and relax before the hectic journey back into the Alexandria Bay "jungle".
We were informed to arrive 2 hours early, but it really was not necessary. Everyone was informed that all the Fireworks cruise tour had seat at the top of the boats, so everyone would have a good view. Well, Uncle Sam lied. Fortunately, we were lucky enough to get seats at the top on the 3rd boat out. The company woulf fill up the top of one boat, then another. The first 2 boats that went out were the steam ships, and were the nicest. The 3rd boat was huge with 3 levels but had limited seating on the top. However, they kept piling people onboard so there were folks who were either standing or had to go to the lower decks. Finally, they boarded the remaining passengers on the smaller shuttle ships. Additionally, the staff of Uncle Sam's were rather rude, from the person I booked the Fireworks cruise with via telephone, to the persons helping to board the ships. For a family owned business, you would think they could be a little friendlier to the guests. But they are a monopoly in the area, so I assume they don't care.
The fireworks were OK...not exactly NYC, but we had nothing else planned for the evening. Exiting Alexandria Bay following the foreworks was pure _ell ! It was unbelievable that people traveled there for a bogus 20 minute firework display, then spent 90 minutes leaving. But that's the American way I guess.
I really am glad I visited 1000 Islands. It is such a unique destination. Next time, I will most likely avoid Alexandria Bay and head over to the Canadian side.