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North American Waterways: St. Lawrence and the Great Lakes - 2022

Montréal • 12-night Great Lakes small ship cruise with Kingston, Toronto, Niagara Falls, Cleveland, Detroit, Lake Huron, Manitoulin Island, Sault Ste. Marie, Mackinac Island, Lake Michigan • Chicago
  • SAIL INTO THE MISTS ON A NIAGARA FALLS CRUISE ABOARD THE HORNBLOWER
  • Small Ship Ocean Cruise from Montreal to Chicago | North American Waterways: St. Lawrence and the Great Lakes
    TAKE A HORSE-DRAWN CARRIAGE TOUR OF HISTORIC MACKINAC ISLAND, WHICH REMAINS CAR-FREE
  • FLOAT PAST MORE THAN 50 ARCHITECTURAL WONDERS AND ENJOY THEM FROM A UNIQUE PERSPECTIVE ON THE CHICAGO RIVER
  • Lake in Montreal City
    DISCOVER THE ARCHITECTURAL HIGHLIGHTS AND INVIGORATING CITYSCAPES OF MONTRÉAL
  • ROUND OUT THIS REMARKABLE JOURNEY WITH AN EXTENSION TO CHICAGO
  • ocean explorer exterior flowers
    CRUISE ON THE 5-STAR OCEAN EXPLORER, AN AGILE AND STATE-OF-THE-ART EXPEDITION VESSEL THAT CAN NAVIGATE TO PLACES LARGER SHIPS CAN’T
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Chicago to Montreal

Pre-Trip Extension

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (Pre-Trip)

FROM: $1499 PER PERSON | 3 DAYS | $500 PER DAY

Chicago, Illinois (Pre-Trip)

FROM: $999 PER PERSON | 3 DAYS | $333 PER DAY
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DAY 1:

Arrive in Chicago, Illinois

Arrive in Chicago for the first leg of your Great Lakes adventure! Spend the afternoon and evening at leisure, with time to explore your new surroundings. After settling in, enjoy free time before a Welcome Dinner tonight.

Included meals:

Dinner

DAY 2:

Tour the highlights of Chicago

This morning, we'll depart from our hotel on a panoramic tour of this cultural capital. You’ll have the afternoon free to catch some more of the Windy City’s highlights on your own.

Included Feature:

  • Half-day panoramic tour of Chicago

Included meals:

Breakfast

DAY 3:

Take an architectural boat tour of Chicago, and embark the Ocean Explorer

Today will bring a new nautical adventure, as you see Chicago from the water on an architectural tour. More than 50 buildings line the Chicago River, a testament to how this metropolis has thrived over the past century to become one of the world’s largest cities.

You’ll enjoy a tasty and authentic deep-dish pizza lunch before boarding your private motorcoach to Milwaukee. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the scenery as you head to the port of Milwaukee, where the Ocean Explorer awaits your arrival.

Following embarkation, you’ll have time to explore your beautiful 5-star vessel before joining your fellow travelers for a Welcome Briefing. Dinner this evening will be served on board.

Included Feature:

  • Architectural boat tour of Chicago

Cultural Discovery:

  • Deep dish pizza lunch

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 4:

Sail along scenic Lake Michigan

The only Great Lake located entirely within the United States, Lake Michigan has a surface area of more than 22,000 square miles, making it the fifth largest lake in the world. The name Michigan is believed to come from the native Ojibwe word mishigami, which translates to “great water.” After a scenic day of cruising, we’ll gather for dinner in the ship’s main dining room.

Included Feature:

  • Scenic day of cruising on Lake Michigan

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 5:

Step back in time on car-free Mackinac Island

Tour the popular retreat of Mackinac Island today via horse-drawn carriage. With its Revolutionary-era heritage and car-free streets, arriving on the island feels like a true step back in time.

Spend the rest of the afternoon exploring the village on your own. This evening, you're invited to attend a captivating presentation by the ship’s Resident Lecturer, rounding out another delightful day.

Included Features:

  • Narrated horse-drawn carriage tour of Mackinac Island
  • Tour Fort Mackinac

Cultural Discovery:

  • Buffet lunch at the historic Grand Hotel

Scenic Sailing:

  • Enjoy views of the 5-mile long Mackinac Bridge as you sail to and from Mackinac Island

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 6:

Choose your own adventure in Sault Ste. Marie

Today, we’ll transit the Soo Locks from Lake Huron into Lake Superior at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. Located at the mouth of the St. Mary's River, these four parallel locks — MacArthur (constructed in 1943), Poe (1895), Davis (1914), and Sabin (1919) — pass an impressive 10,000 ships each year.

You’ll have your choice of adventures and attractions on the U.S. side of the locks, including a hop-on/hop-off tour, Valley Camp Museum, and the Soo Locks.

Included Features:

  • Transit the Soo Locks from Lake Huron into Lake Superior
  • Choice of tours in Sault Ste. Marie: Visit the Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre or the Museum Camp Valley Ship

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 7:

Encounter Ojibwe tradition and a powwow on Manitoulin Island

Keep your cameras ready as we cruise through the rugged beauty of UNESCO-listed Georgian Bay, sometimes called the sixth Great Lake. Our destination is Manitoulin Island, the world’s largest freshwater island and home of the Ojibwe tribe. With native and non-native communities coexisting like nowhere else on the continent, Manitoulin has a history as colorful and diverse as any in Canada. Docking at Little Current via Zodiac transfer, you’ll explore the area’s rich native and nautical history, and discover how the beliefs and customs of the Ojibwe intertwine with Catholicism during a visit to the Immaculate Conception Church.

Included Feature:

  • Explore Manitoulin Island and visit the Immaculate Conception Church
Cultural Discovery:
  • Experience a traditional smudging ceremony and powwow at the Ojibwe Cultural Foundation

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 8:

Spend a day on Lake Huron

Spend the day enjoying incredible views of Lake Huron. The second largest of the Great Lakes, Lake Huron features more 30,000 islands and boasts more shoreline than any of the other Great Lakes. Head to the sun deck with a cocktail and a good book, or with a good camera for some excellent photo opportunities.

Included Feature:
  • Scenic cruising around Lake Huron

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 9:

Discover Detroit: From the Henry Ford Museum to the Institute of the Arts

Sailing from Lake Erie to Lake Huron, we’ll find ourselves in Detroit, Michigan. Peruse artifacts from American history during a self-guided tour of the Henry Ford Museum, home to the limousine that carried President John F. Kennedy on that fateful day in Texas, the bus in which Rosa Parks stood her ground and sparked the Civil Rights Movement, and the chair Abraham Lincoln was sitting in when he was assassinated.

After lunch back on the ship, you’ll tour the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA). The DIA features one of the most renowned art collections in the country that include Diego Rivera's Detroit Industry Murals and Vincent van Gogh’s self-portrait — the first Van Gogh painting to enter an American museum collection. Home to the Harriet Tubman Museum Collection, as well as other important offerings documenting the Detroit’s labor movement.

This evening, enjoy dinner and a Motown performance back on the ship as we set sail for Lake Huron.

Included Features:

  • Visit Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA)
  • Peruse artifacts from American history during a guided tour of the Henry Ford Museum

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 10:

Tour Cleveland’s iconic sites, including the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Enjoy a charming hop-on/hop-off trolley tour of Cleveland, nestled along the banks of Lake Erie. Depending on the day of the week, our stops may include the stately Museum of Art, the Tiffany-designed Wade Chapel at Lakeview Cemetery, and the bustling West Side Market, where hundreds of vendors hawk everything from fresh seafood to flowers. You'll also have the opportunity to visit the iconic Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, spanning generations of incredible music history displayed in interactive, audibly-pleasing exhibits.

Included Feature:

  • Half-day trolley tour of Cleveland
  • Visit the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Please note: Some groups will experience today’s itinerary in reverse order. However, both groups will enjoy the same number of features.

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 11:

Sail into the mists of Niagara Falls and visit a local winery

Excitement prevails today as we disembark in Port Colborne on the southern end of the Welland Canal and drive along the Niagara River for dramatic views of Horseshoe Falls. Then you’ll board the iconic Hornblower “Voyage to the Falls” for a cruise past the American and Bridal Veil Falls before heading into the misty spray of Niagara’s thunderous Horseshoe.

This afternoon, enjoy a wine lunch at an estate in the Niagara Wine Region, home to over 50 wineries. Back on shore, we’ll drive along picturesque Niagara Parkway, spotting famed Niagara sights including the Floral Clock and the Whirlpool Rapids.

Included Feature:

  • Embark on a Hornblower "Voyage of the Falls" cruise before a scenic drive along the Niagara Parkway

Cultural Discovery:

  • Visit a local winery for wine tasting

Please note: Timing and docking may vary due to ship's transit time through canal.

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 12:

Enjoy a panoramic tour of Toronto

After breakfast, a panoramic tour of Toronto ensures you’ll see this wonderful metropolis and its skyline in full view. We’ll drive by Toronto City Hall, the Eaton Center, and more, before visiting the pedestrian-only Distillery Historic District, and then drive by the Hockey Hall of Fame. Lunch will be served on board following your tour.

Included Feature:

  • Half-day panoramic tour of Toronto

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 13:

Tour Kingston by trolley

Today we'll explore Kingston, known as the "Limestone City" for its historic architecture and charm. You'll experience this city in the best way, via a hop-on/hop-off narrated trolley tour. The included stops will offer a look at all of the city's most well-known visitor destinations, including the Canadian Penitentiary Museum, Queen’s University's Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Pumphouse Museum, Bellevue House, Kingston City Hall, and Market Square. Later we'll visit the downtown shopping area for a brief stroll and finish our tour at Fort Henry. Fort Henry is a 19th century British military base, complete with period equipment, museum, and even garrison parades. There will be an interactive tour and lunch at the fort before returning to the ship.

Included Features:

  • Trolley tour of Kingston
  • Guided tour of Fort Henry

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 14:

Spend a day in a historic Canadian village

Travel back more than 150 years to see up close how rural life was lived in an English Canadian settlement. You'll spend a full day in Brockville, a small-town city overflowing with hiking trails and heritage gems located in the heart of the Thousand Islands region. This afternoon, enjoy an included lunch at a local restaurant.

Included Feature:

  • Full-day in Brockville

Included meals:

Breakfast, lunch & dinner

DAY 15:

Discover the glory of Montréal on tour and disembark the Ocean Explorer

Today you'll disembark the Ocean Explorer, then set out to explore this remarkable city, situated on an island in the St. Lawrence River. This UNESCO City of Design (one of only a few in the world), is home to more than 50 national historic sites, and it boasts a lively downtown arts and cultural scene.

At lunchtime, you'll feast on a traditional sugar shack meal, rich and laden with peak-season maple sweetness. Afterward, you'll have time to explore this magnificent city on your own.

Included Feature:

  • Highlights tour of Montréal

Cultural Discovery:

  • Sugar shack lunch

Included meals:

Breakfast  & lunch

DAY 16:

Explore more Montréal on your own

Enjoy a full day exploring Montréal at your leisure. You will have an opportunity to visit Notre Dame Basilica on your own, with entrance tickets provided by your Program Manager.

Make sure you take advantage of its vibrant foodie scene, complete with fresh catch-of-the day, like Atlantic char, and poutine, which is a dish of French fries smothered in cheese curds and gravy.

Included meals:

Breakfast & dinner

DAY 17:

Board a return flight home

After breakfast at the hotel this morning, check out of the hotel and transfer to the airport for your flight home.

Included meals:

Breakfast

Post-Trip Extension

Chicago, Illinois (Post-Trip)

FROM: $999 PER PERSON | 3 DAYS | $333 PER DAY

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (Post-Trip)

FROM: $1499 PER PERSON | 3 DAYS | $500 PER DAY

Please Note: Ocean cruising is not the same experience as river cruising; as such, you may experience fluctuating tides and weather patterns that may involve some rocking of your vessel. Itineraries will include all activities as planned except in extreme cases that can’t be controlled by your shipboard crew. Day-by-day itineraries are preliminary and therefore subject to change. If changes occur while on tour, you will be notified by your Cruise Director or regional expert.

Contact Vantage

CALL 1-800-322-6677

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