Themes of The Great Lakes
Cruise Among Majestic Skylines
These destinations on the Great Lakes play host to extraordinary metropolitan centers: historical crossroads for centuries of agricultural, industrial, and cultural exchange.
Sail Past Natural Wonders
Explore the wonders of the Great Lakes' deep waters, soaring cliffs, natural waterfalls and diverse wildlife among these awe-inspiring Great Lakes cruise destinations.
United States & Canadian Provinces
US States on the Great Lakes
Canadian Provinces on the Great Lakes
Witness the extraordinary locks, canals, and lift bridges that make Great Lakes transportation possible among these cruise destinations.
- Aerial Lift Bridge (Duluth, Minnesota). This Great Lakes cruising destination is a remarkable feat of engineering found just off Lake Superior. Allowing ships into the historic Duluth Ship Canal, the Aerial Lift Bridge raises its entire over-the-water portion with an elevator mechanism. Ships are then able to pass below. This rare style is one of only 227 aerial lift bridges in the world.
- Soo Locks (Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan and Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario) cruises visit a man-made marvel that was built in 1855 to connect Lake Superior to Lake Huron. The busiest lock system in the world, between seven and ten thousand ships pass through the Soo Locks during the shipping season each year. Being too large to travel through the Welland Canal that bypasses Niagara Falls, larger domestic carriers (called lakers) need to travel through the Soo Locks. Large ships that pass through the locks are approximately 1,000 feet long by 105 feet wide. The largest ship to pass through the Soo Locks is larger than three football fields in length. The Paul R. Tregurtha measures 1,013 feet and 6 inches. Smaller foreign ships (termed salties) can exit the Great Lakes by way of the St. Lawrence River and Atlantic Ocean.
Explore More Great Lakes Cruise Themes
Great Lakes Lighthouses
With our Great Lakes cruises, you'll have the opportunity to see -- and even visit -- several prominent lighthouses that are still in use today. Across the lakes, there are over 200 active lighthouses that continue to guide ships, preventing them from wreckage while inviting guests as popular Great Lakes cruising destinations.
Native American Cultures
The Great Lakes as we know them were once home to many Native American tribes. They were a resource -- not just for fish, water, and fur, but also iron and other metal ores. These First Nations used it all far before European settlers arrived, leaving behind cultural landmarks and traditions still passed down to their ancestors today.