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“A great 1/2 day halibut trip with top notch boat crews”
Review of Rainbow Tours

Rainbow Tours
Ranked #8 of 57 Tours in Homer
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Full Day and Half-day sightseeing tours exploring Kachemak Bay in beautiful Homer Alaska. Come spend the day seeing incredible pelagic seabirds and abundant wildlife. We also offer fast-paced, fun 1/2 Day Halibut fishing adventures. Call or visit us online to make your reservation today!
Salt Lake City, Utah
Level 5 Contributor
60 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
“A great 1/2 day halibut trip with top notch boat crews”
Reviewed July 15, 2013

My father-in-law and I got setup with Rainbow Tours through our fishing lodge for 2 - 1/2 day halibut fishing trips. This was our first time to Alaska and we were not sure what to expect. When we arrived check in was very easy. We told them who we were, they told us what boat we were on and where to get on it. When we first got on the boat, one of the deck hands on the Jackpot was sounding like we weren't going to do very well because the tides were really massive and fishing might be pretty rough. I don't know if this is to get everyones hopes down just to bring them up and beyond expectations when everyone limits out!? Needless to say we were very bummed at first. It takes about 1.5 hours to get to the fishing hole, so most of the time is spent watching the deckhands prepare the poles or watching for wildlife. We were pretty lucky both times we went out when we were looking for wildlife. We saw orcas, humpback whales, sea otters and dolphins. Upon arriving at the fishing hole we were given a pole and told to move down the sides of the boat and drop the line until it hits the bottom. The current was really ripping so naturally everyones line headed to the back of the boat. Luckily we had very few tangles. Almost immediately people had fish on and everybody caught their limit, even the captain and crew got in on the action. So much for rough fishing!! In the 2 days that we fished we were put on both the Jackpot and the Sizzler. Both the crews and captains were very professional and did everything they could to get us on fish. Although the fish were smaller they are still pretty tough to reel in. We limited out both times. The weather was really good when we were on the boats and the waves were minimal. If I have any gripes, it would be the amount of people on the boat and the size of the Sizzler v.s people on it. From what I had heard and saw almost all the charters had tons of people on them so no big deal. Overall I give them 2 thumbs up for great customer service and would highly recommend them because of my experience.

Visited June 2013
1 Thank Yellowstone75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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144 reviews from our community

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English first
Newville, Pennsylvania
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Best Money spent in Homer!”
Reviewed July 11, 2013

Rainbow's wildlife 7 hour tour/cruise was worth more to us than the $59.00 + tax per person it cost me. Tim, the captain, was very knowledgeable, & quite willing to answer any/all questions. The views of wildlife & scenery was breath taking. This cruise is all Alaska!

Visited June 2013
Thank DennyMoore53340
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Welch, Minnesota
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“You can tell they want your business”
Reviewed July 10, 2013 via mobile

You have many tour operators to choose from in Homer, Alaska...and these people know it! Therefore, we were treated royally. Starting with the girl at the desk, answering all sorts of questions that I'm sure she's heard hundreds of times. The boat crew provided a very personal service...friendly, patient & professional all the way. I'll go back...in fact, I am today.

Visited July 2013
1 Thank sjstub
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“A Homer "Must Do"”
Reviewed July 8, 2013

Our family has gone on the Rainbow Tours 1/2 day halibut charter for the last 7 years, most recently in late June 2013. Our experience has been consistently great, but it is important to have your expectations right when signing up for a 1/2 day halibut boat.

We take a summer trip to Alaska each year to see friends. An important part of that is a trip down to Homer to enjoy the beautiful scenery, eclectic town, and always a 1/2 day halibut trip with Rainbow tours. Our children (boy 8, girl 11) have been going on the boat since before they could look over the rail and fish, but once they could see over the rail and handle the rod Capt Art has let them fish. The kids consider this trip to be a core part of summer vacation.

Why a 1/2 day halibut boat? We have 3 primary reasons. First, it is affordable with younger children. Doing a full day halibut charter would cost 3 times more. Second, a half day is about right for kids. They will catch fish, but not be out on the ocean for 8 hours. In 7 years our kids have never gone home without catching multiple halibut. Some years are better than others (this year was a challenge due to the strength of the tides) but the kids have a great time manning their rod and reeling in their catch (generally with help from me or the crew if they get tired). Lastly, it is a nice boat ride out to the fishing area on a boat large enough for the kids to move around and generally see sea otters, lots of birds, and whales. We look on it as 1/3 halibut trip, 1/3 wildlife viewing, and 1/3 sight seeing (mountains, volcanoes, etc...)

Why Rainbow Tours? We have had an excellent experience every year for 7 years. Most often we have gone out with Capt Art, but have been out on both the Sizzler and the Jackpot. The deck hands are first rate. They change pretty much every year, but have always been helpful and fun. With young kids we appreciate that they engage the kids both lending a hand while fishing and giving impromptu biology lessons when the fish are being filleted. The Captain often welcomes the kids onto the bridge and lets them sit in one of the chairs. With the larger boat there is enough room in the "galley" to move around, have a cup of coffee, use the microwave, etc... Since we go on the morning boat the kids often fall asleep on the bench on the ride back to harbor. It is a great family experience.

What a 1/2 day halibut charter is NOT: 1) Private. Expect 20 people on the boat. We have yet to have a bad experience, but I can imagine that one rude or insensitive person would create a bit of a challenge. 2) A trophy fishing expedition. If you want to catch bigger halibut pay the money and commit to a full day. The halibut on a 1/2 day will probably average 10-20 pounds. The biggest I've seen is 40lb. 3) A guarantee of perfect weather. We have been lucky with weather (we are generally in Homer for 3 days so watch weather reports) and haven't gone out when the wind is up. We have gone out with light rain and had wonderful trips, but make sure you have the proper clothes (i.e. rain coat, particularly for kids).

As you can tell we are big fans of Rainbow Tours 1/2 day halibut boat. We do it each year and have never had an experience that would make us consider one of the other charter companies. I'm sure there are other excellent charters offering 1/2 day trips in Homer, but Rainbow is one of the originals and they have never disappointed us.

Visited June 2013
1 Thank WesPDX
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Middlesex, North Carolina
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Trip to Seldovia”
Reviewed July 2, 2013

Not the best trip. While the crew was courteous and helpful and the scenery fantastic, the engine noise kept us from hearing anything the Captain said about the area we were passing through. The speakers are very poorly located. We chased and flushed several flocks of water birds looking for a puffin. I felt this an unnecessary disturbance as there were Puffins on the water if she had made her initial approach more carefully. After finally arriving in Seldovia we waited almost an hour and a half for lunch at one of the two restaurants in town. After having a sixteen dollar hamburger and a tour of the museum (A very good local museum on the history of the town) it was time for the return trip. There are better options for seeing gull island and the long ride with no understandable narration to Seldovia is hardly worth the time.

Visited June 2013
1 Thank Carl B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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