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The 10 Coolest Boat Tours on Groupon

BY: Editors | Jul 31, 2017

When you're on a nature tour, it's exciting enough to spot fresh prints. But passengers on a recent Louisiana swamp tour got to see something even rarer: the Fresh Prince.

In a visit to the Tonight Show to promote her new hit Girls Trip, Jada Pinkett Smith told Jimmy Fallon all about her recent Groupon adventure. After castmate Tiffany Haddish mentioned she had a Groupon for Cajun Pride Tours, one of our most popular boat tours, Jada said she and Will would love to join her. But there was a misunderstanding: the couple had assumed the tour would be a private affair held on a small fanboat. When they arrived, however, they realized they'd be taking the tour with a large group instead.

Jada was concerned things could get out of hand. "I was like, 'Tiffany, I got Will. This could get really crazy!'" she told Fallon. But Will wasn't having it: "He's like, 'Forget that, I'm not going home. I want to go on a swamp tour!'"

They ended up staying for the tour, which turned out to be the right call. "We had the best time ever!" Jada crowed. "So you know, shoutout to Groupon!"

In honor of their adventure, we collected 10 of the top-rated, most interesting, and most unusual tours on Groupon, starting with the trip Jada and Will enjoyed so much. Even if you don't spot any celebs on these boat trips, you're bound to see something unforgettable.


1. Swamp Boat Tour from Cajun Pride Tours

La Place, LA | Get tickets starting at $19

Rating: 4.9/5 with 3,474 reviews

Why it's special: Will and Jada may be welcome at Manchac Swamp, but jet skis and fishing boats aren't. Thanks to the swamp's protected status, it sees no outside visitors other than tours, meaning the local wildlife—including alligators, snakes, opossums, and bald eagles—are accustomed to the boats and will often peek out (or float to the surface) to say hello.

2. Dinner Show Cruise from Jungle Queen Riverboat

Fort Lauderdale, FL | Get two tickets for $81

Rating: 4.7/5 with 13,176 reviews

Why it's special: The regular sightseeing cruise has plenty to recommend it—namely, panoramic views of Millionaire's Row and other sights aboard a double-decker riverboat. But the dinner show takes it even further, promising a live variety show and all-you-can-eat barbecue upon arrival at the company's Tropical Isle.

3. Glass-Bottomed Boat Tour at The Meadows Center

Austin, TX | Get tickets starting at $12 for two

Rating: 4.8/5 with 3,215 reviews

Why it's special: Texas State University runs this highly informative peek at the diverse wildlife of the San Marcos Springs. Bonus: while you're there, you can hike the surrounding Hill Country, stroll the Wetlands Boardwalk, and visit the interactive Discovery Hall nature exhibit.

4. Everglades Airboat Tour from Coopertown Airboats

Miami, FL | Get tickets starting at $17

Rating: 4.7/5 with 5,777 reviews

Why it's special: After departing from tiny, unincorporated Coopertown (pop. 8), you'll head deep into the wetlands, admiring colorful waterfowl and stopping at alligator holes along the way. Back at home base, you can try the frog legs that founder John Cooper originally began the airboat company to produce back in 1945.

5. Sailing Tour from Tall Ship Windy of Chicago

Chicago, IL | Get tickets for $22

Rating: 4.7/5 with 2,402 reviews

Why it's special: This 148-foot, four-masted schooner is a perfect match for the Windy City. Each day it sets sail on Lake Michigan for narrated tours that cover topics such as the city's architecture and local pirate history (yes, the Great Lakes had pirates).

6. Glacier and Wildlife Tour from Alaska's Finest Tours and Cruises

Anchorage, AK | Get tickets starting at $199 for two

Rating: 4.5/5 with 112 reviews

Why it's special: You'll get within a few hundred feet of the famous Portage Glacier during this outdoor adventure cruise, which also includes round-trip ground transportation from most Anchorage hotels and a pre-tour stop at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center.

7. Manhattan Tour from Hornblower Cruises & Events

New York, NY | Get tickets starting at $15

Rating: 4.4/5 with 1,162 reviews

Why it's special: This tour brings you as close as possible to the Statue of Liberty, then pauses so you can snap photos to your heart's content. But you're not done yet: you'll also take in Ellis Island, the Brooklyn Bridge, and other sights of Lower Manhattan. Good luck beating that for $15.

8. Duck Tour from Dells Army Duck Tour

Wisconsin Dells, WI | Get tickets starting at $42 for two

Rating: 4.5/5 with 2,251 reviews

Why it's special: Boats are great, but they have one conspicuous flaw: they can't go on land. Dells Army Duck Tour fixes this glaring error by holding its Dell Creek tours aboard amphibious vehicles built during WWII—a practice that dates back to the tour's founding in 1946.

9. Patriot Jet Boat Thrill Ride from Flagship Cruises & Events

San Diego, CA | Get tickets starting at $18

Rating: 4.7/5 with 6,302 reviews

Why it's special: At 30 minutes, this outing is on the shorter side for a boat tour. Then again, it's on the extremely long side for a rollercoaster ride, which is essentially what it is. During the ride, the boat twists and turns across San Diego Bay while two turbo-charged engines propel it upwards of 50 mph.

10. Pirate Ship Cruise from Hawaii Pirate Ship Adventures

Honolulu, HI | Get tickets starting at $37

Rating: 4.7/5 with 738 reviews

Why it's special: The 83-foot galleon known as the Treasure Seeker lives two lives. By day, kids and families come aboard to hunt treasure and battle rival pirates using the ship's 12 water cannons. At night it turns into a BYOB party cruiser where adults dressed as pirates hit the dance floor.