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Join us aboard Schooner Manitou located in Traverse City, Michigan, for a unique adventure back in time. You will discover the beauty of northern lakes Michigan and Huron from the deck of this majestic sailing vessel while enjoying a level of relaxation rarely experienced in today's frenzied world.
The Tall Ship Manitou is a replica of an 1800's "coasting" cargo schooner, similar to those that sailed the Great Lakes and the Atlantic Ocean. Specifically designed for passenger service, her hull was constructed in Portsmouth, New Hampshire in 1983 and finished by Vermont carpenters on Lake Champlain. With a 59 passenger capacity, there is plenty of space for sitting and moving around the decks while under sail. Her overall length of 114 feet, beam of 21 feet, and displacement of nearly 100 tons ensures a comfortable, relaxing motion, soothing to both landlubbers and "old salts" alike.
Located at the base of beautiful West Grand Traverse Bay, Traverse City, MI is the vibrant homeport for Manitou for our 4 and 5 day Windjammer cruises in September. Traverse City's unique shops and galleries, as well as its many high quality restaurants, are sure to enhance your sailing adventure.
Sailing out of Traverse City, Manitou offers a Noon Sail, Afternoon Moomers Ice Cream Sail, a popular Evening Sail and a Floating Bed & Breakfast. Each adventure is two hours in length. Specially catered picnic meal is included on the Evening Sail. With over 3,000 square feet of sail, this stately vessel has plied the waters of West Grand Traverse Bay since 1991 and continues to be the most unique attraction in the entire area.
Manitou meets or exceeds all U.S. Coast Guard regulations for construction, stability, safety equipment, and electronics for vessels in passenger service. The U.S. Coast Guard licensed captain has many years of experience, and together with a capable crew, you can rest assured of being in good hands.
Life aboard the Manitou is fun and informal. The object here is to slow down and take things as they come. Discover the lost art of conversation with new found friends, read a good book, marvel at the breathtaking array of stars, get back in touch with yourself. Many folks have told us that this is the best stress reliever they have ever found. While underway, you are free to leave the sailing to our experienced crew or lend a hand and learn the arts of the sailor. After Manitou tucks into a snug anchorage for the evening, take out our sea kayaks or rowing dinghy for a little exploration. Beach combing is special fun for those who would like to further enjoy the beauty of many of our destinations.
"We did not expect such gourmet food."
You'll love the food on Manitou. Our healthy menus will satisfy the heartiest of seagoing appetites, with emphasis on Manitou specialties, fresh fruits, and produce of the region. Our team of cooks will delight you with bountiful home cooked meals turned out of the ship's galley.
Travelers are always looking for memorable and relaxing experiences. Let’s discover more through the words of our innkeepers. Many thanks to Dave McGinnis for sharing his own secrets with BBOnline.com! Why do most travelers stay at your inn?
For a unique adventure that gives a taste of life on a 19th century tall ship.
What are you best known for? What makes your inn unique? What do you love most about your inn?
The inn itself is very unique in that it is a 114' long historic replica of a working cargo schooner. We love the opportunity to expose people to something that is way outside of their normal experience.
If someone has never been to your city, what is the #1 reason to come visit?
People come for outdoor recreation.
What’s the best compliment you have ever received about the inn?
People say our staff is so wonderful and attentive.
What’s the best kept secret about the area?
Believe it or not, the best kept secret is our beaches. We have miles and miles of pristine shoreline that are enjoyed by a fraction of the numbers of people that descend on east coast beaches.
If a traveler is staying at your inn for 4 nights, what should he/she do in the area?
Enjoy the large selection of top notch restaurants, visit Sleeping Bear Dunes, tour the wineries, go sailing (of course), and take in a concert at Interlochen.
Is there anything within walking distance of your inn?
Beaches, restaurants, museum
What is your favorite restaurant/food in the area?
Any good area guides/websites that travelers could reference? How many rooms does your inn have?
We have 12 rooms.
Do you accept pets?
We don't accept pets.
Sailing with us
* Through Labor Day weekend. Minors under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Prices listed are for our regular sails. Specialty sails that occur during these times will have significantly different rates. See the section on Specialty Sails for more details. SPRING AND FALL SCHEDULES VARY. Please view the schedule or contact us for details.
** Passengers are welcome to bring along a simple lunch (sandwiches, etc.). DUE TO SPACE LIMITATIONS, NO COOLERS ARE PERMITTED.
Schedules are subject to change, and due to charters or other special events, certain voyages might not be available at their regularly scheduled time. If you are interested in a specific date and time, please check the schedule.
Reservations are made by purchasing a ticket for the desired cruise. Reservations canceled 24 hours prior to scheduled departure will be refunded in full. Refunds will be made if a sail is canceled by the company. Tickets are available for purchase online up until one hour before departure time. Traverse Tall Ship Co., LLC reserves the right to change sailing schedules when necessary.
Sailing with Us
Please check in at the office located across the street from the ship at the Discovery Center Great Lakes a minimum of 30 minutes before your scheduled sailing time to receive your boarding pass. If you have not checked in by this time, you may forfeit your reservation. Once you have received your pass, you will be shuttled to the ship. The ship casts off promptly at the scheduled time and we cannot delay the cruise for latecomers.
Other things to consider:
- Dress warmly. It is often a fair bit cooler out on the water compared to the temperature on shore.
- Dress appropriately for the weather. The ship will sail in all weather so long as the captain feels there are no safety concerns. Tie down your hat on windy days, wear sun protection on sunny days, and bring a rain jacket on rainy days. NO UMBRELLAS ALLOWED!
- There is a bar with drinks (beer, wine, soft drinks), complimentary water and snacks available on board. Please leave coolers on shore. Purchases on board can be made with cash, Visa, Mastercard or Discover.
- Gratuities to the crew are appreciated.