The only way to really get the magical feel of Lake George is to spend time actually on the lake. Many tourists that visit enjoy the many great activities that the area has to offer, maybe spend some time at the beach and then go home satisfied. However, they leave without having any idea of what Lake George really is!
There is something inexplicable about navigating the pristine waters of the lake that you must experience. While I am partial to navigating the lake in a private vessel I must admit that the larger cruise boats are an amazing way to experience the lake.
ROMANTIC DINNER CRUISES
There are several cruises to choose from, however, the dinner cruises and the firework cruises are experiences that all should have at least once. Although very few experience it only once since the memories continue to inspire them to come back for yet another cruise until they finally do.
While there are many options we will be considering the most popular and longest standing company:
THE LAKE GEORGE STEAMBOAT COMPANY
The Lake George Steamboat Company is the most popular option on the lake. They really know what they are doing, they would have to since they have been on the lake for so long. In fact, it was founded in 1817, right in the height of the romantic era.
In other words, as of the writing of this article, the company is 199 years old! That makes them the oldest company in the entire Lake George region! So, let’s start by taking a look at the fleet.
The Mohican II: It is only proper to start by introducing the Mohican II. This ship goes beyond vintage, there are no other boats in America that have been continuously run for as long as it has! It was inaugurated in 1908 and has continued to be run up until today! That means that it’s cruises go back 108 years from today! In 2008 it claimed a well deserved place on the national Register of Historic Places.
The Minnie-Ha-Ha: This is one of the few authentic steamboats left in America that actually still run off of steam. Experiencing the thrill of the steam whistle with the red paddle wheel churning the otherwise calm waters of the lake is a thrilling experience that you can not get in many places anymore. The ship is complete with a calliope (a pipe organ that runs off of the steam) that is powered by the steam from the engines and can be heard throughout the village when played! The slower pace of the cruise is ideal for a romantic moment.
The name of this boat comes from an Iroquois expression that means “laughing waters”. It interesting to reflect on this as you observe the paddle wheel tickling the otherwise calm waters seeming to make them “laugh”. Interestingly Minnie-ha-ha was the name of the daughter of the famous Mohawk Indian chief Hiawatha.
The M.V. Lac du Saint Sacrement: This is the newest addition, however, it is still almost an antique. This boat was originally designed because of the need to accommodate larger groups and conventions that would require first-class service. The service included —and still includes— moonlight cruises, live entertainment and fine dinning.
The boat was named after Lake George’s original European name. In 1646 Issac Joques, a Jesuit priest, christened the lake: Lac du Saint Sacrement, which means “The Lake of the Blessed Sacrament” . Years later —in 1755— the name was changed to Lake George in honor of King George II.
The Lake George Steamboat Company offers many cruise options that operate from the month of May until the end of October. At the time of writing the following options were available:
The Minnie Ha-Ha: We have already explained the fascination of this historic ship which in itself gives many reasons to take a cruise on it. Another reason to consider it may be the time factor. If you don’t have much time available this is a great option since the cruise is shorter that the others. There are 7 daily cruises that last 1 hour each. The most romantic cruise that the Minnie Ha-Ha offers is the Moonlight Cruise that is scheduled for every Saturday night throughout the summer and includes live entertainment.
The Mohican: This historic ship is a great option for those who have some more time available and would like to see more of the lake aboard a large vessel. There are several cruises available at different times and different lengths. The most popular seems to be the Island tour that goes cruises through the narrows up to Paradise Bay. If you want to go all out there is also a cruise that leaves early in the morning and goes the entire 32 mile length of Lake George! Another popular option is to take a dinner cruise. Most evenings there is a different theme, i.e., Taco, BBQ, or Pizza.
The Mohican also offers private charters for weddings, rehearsal dinners or other special occasions. Such parties can number up to 300 guests for cocktails or 120 guests for a buffet dinner.
The Lac du Saint Sacrement: If you want a romantic evening dinner cruise this is the ship to choose! There is a luncheon cruise daily that last for two hours. On Sundays you also have the option of enjoying a brunch cruise complete with Champagne! The most romantic option however, is the firework cruise that runs every Thursday night during the summer!
ENJOY THE LAKE!
With so many options one can easily get overwhelmed, however, we have a simple solution: Come back, each time you visit Lake George you can try a different cruise! Most visitors do decide to come back regularly and we are sure you will want to do the same!
However you decide to spend your romantic getaway in the Adirondacks, whatever activities you decide to program, we hope you enjoy the Lake!