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Windjammer Multi-day Cruises

“Hidden Treasure”… “Undiscovered Paradise”… phrases that are well suited for the island wilderness areas, charming coastal villages and sailing routes traveled by the tall ship Manitou in these “fresh water seas.” Pristine deserted sandy beaches capped by beautiful rolling hillsides… Clear, sparkling, swimmer-friendly waters… Wonderful sailing breezes… All are typical of this area.

Join us aboard Manitou for a unique adventure back in time. You will discover the beauty of northern Lake Michigan from the deck of this majestic sailing vessel while enjoying a level of relaxation rarely experienced in today’s frenzied world.


To Make Windjammer Reservations Please Call 800-678-0383 

Cruise Dates Price*
3 Day Bay Getaway September 05* – 08, 2018 $635 per person
4 Day Stories of the Stars  September 11* – 15, 2018 $789 per person
4 Day Wine Cruise September 18* – 22, 2018 $789 per person
4 Day Season Finale Cruise  September 25* – 29, 2018 $749 per person

*Board between 6:00 and 8:00 pm on first day.
Prices based on double occupancy


Manitou is one of the largest sailing ships on the Great Lakes, constructed with modern materials, but similar in design to vessels that sailed one-hundred years ago. She was built specifically for passenger service, making her one of the most comfortable windjammers afloat.

Our licensed captain has many years of experience and together with the professional crew you can rest assured you’re in good hands. Manitou meets or exceeds all U.S. Coast Guard regulations for construction, stability, safety equipment and electronics for vessels in passenger service. If the wind should fail, the sturdy diesel engine powers her swiftly to the next destination. Because of her size and design she ensures a comfortable relaxing sail for all.two-masted, gaff rigged, topsail schooner, she measures 114 feet in length with over 3,000 square feet of sail and displaces (weighs) over one hundred tons. Up to twenty-four passengers can enjoy the pleasure and thrill of sailing aboard Manitou.


Located at the base of beautiful West Grand Traverse Bay, Traverse City, MI is the vibrant homeport for Manitou. Traverse City’s unique shops and galleries, as well as its many high quality restaurants, are sure to enhance your sailing adventure.

Remove yourself from the trappings of modern life while aboard Manitou : no TV, phone (cell phones are discouraged), or email, and definitely no itinerary. The wind and weather conditions help determine our course, and after a good day of sailing we drop anchor at one of a variety of possible destinations. We may take in a little local color at a historic fishing village such as St. James on Beaver Island , or visit one of Michigan ‘s oldest general stores (est. 1839) while at Old Mission Harbor. The storekeeper will recount its fascinating history while serving up a genuine fountain soda or ice cream. Surveying the ship at anchor from atop a historic lighthouse or stumbling upon an abandoned, turn of the century farm are likely possibilities on the remote Manitou Islands . Marvel at the towering beech trees during a hike on Power Island in Grand Traverse Bay, or hunt for the ancient Petosky Stone while beach combing in Cathead Bay. A wealth of islands, bays, anchorages and coastal villages are within our reach.


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 d inghy for a little exploration. Beach combing is special fun for those who would like to further enjoy the beauty of many of our destinations.


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. All of the cooking is done on our wood fired stove, “Cleo”, and is served either family style in the main cabin or as a wonderful buffet on deck. Beverages such as juice, tea, and coffee are provided during meals. Soft drinks may be brought on board and stored in your cabin or in ice chests provided on deck.


Manitou accommodates twenty-four passengers in twelve double cabins. Each is nicely appointed but simple and rustic with two sturdy built-in bunks and electric lighting. They are clean, cozy, comfortable, and supplied with fresh linens, towels and warm blankets. All of the cabins and entries have plenty of headroom and windows which can be opened for ventilation. Passengers look after their own cabins and keep them “shipshape.” Skylights and seating areas around the ship’s various cabin sections add to the overall comfort for conversation or an intimate encounter with a good book. The ship’s marine heads (toilets) and hot showers are conveniently located on deck.


Pack comfortable casual clothes in soft luggage instead of suitcases for easy stowing. Bring layers of clothing so you can be prepared for cool and cold nights as well as warm or hot sunny days. Rubber soled shoes, bathing suites, sunglasses and rain gear, cameras and musical instruments are items to be remembered. For those who might like to sleep on deck during nights with bright stars and the Northern Lights, a sleeping bag and cushioned pad should be packed as well. For the comfort of all on board:

  • Radio/MP3 players with headphones only please
  • Smoking is permitted on deck only
  • Excessive drinking is prohibited
  • Minimum passenger age is 12

2018 Windjammer Schedule

To Make Windjammer Reservations Please Call 800-678-0383 and Press Option 2

Cruise Dates Price*
3 Day Bay Getaway September 05* – 08, 2018 $635 per person
4 Day Stories of the Stars  September 11* – 15, 2018 $789 per person
4 Day Wine Cruise September 18* – 22, 2018 $789 per person
4 Day Season Finale Cruise  September 29* – 30, 2018 $749 per person

*Board between 6:00 and 8:00 pm on first day.
Prices based on double occupancy



This cruise is the perfect “get acquainted” windjammer, for those who are intrigued by the idea of a sailing trip but leery of a big time or money commitment. We’re confident you’ll be hooked after this! We’ll explore the beauty of well protected Grand Traverse Bay and its variety of anchorages.


We’re excited to be joined by Mary Stewart Adams, director of the Headlands International Dark Sky Park, who will guide us through a journey of the night sky. Mary is a star lore historian, storyteller and author who has been immersed in the history of star knowledge for nearly 30 years. She led the initiative that resulted in International Dark Sky Park designation for the Headlands property in Emmet County, MI, which later resulted in the State of Michigan passing legislation to protect the night sky over an additional 23,000 acres of state park and forest land. Mary writes and speaks extensively to local, national and international audiences on our relationship to the night sky and its cultural consequences, and has received numerous honors for her work. In addition, she is a member of the International Dark Sky Places Committee of the International Dark Sky Association, protecting and designating dark sky sites around the world. Mary’s weekly radio program “The Storyteller’s Guide to the Night Sky” airs during Morning Edition on Interlochen Public Radio every Monday. Mary makes her home under the starry skies of Harbor Springs, MI.

“I describe myself as a star lore historian because it allows me to access the night sky and its stories in ways that are not confined to one singular approach. Much to my own surprise (because I am a land-lubber, after all!) nowhere is this as obvious as when I’m out on the great lake under the wide open sky. There’s a harmony in the rhythmic motion of a ship under sail that lends itself to understanding the larger rhythms of the sun and moon, planets and stars, whether it’s the scientific discovery that has resulted from centuries of explorers setting out to “follow their star” or the music and poetry inspired by the same, there is something quite specific in the cosmos that can only be known when you leave off from the shore and set your course toward an experience of the stars. It is hard to not wax poetic, but when you’re in this environment with wind and sail and waving water, it opens something within that allows the stars to enter, in a way that’s much different than when your feet are firmly on the ground. I love the unique experience that the astronomy cruise offers!”

– Mary Stewart Adams



Explore the great wine regions of the world with sommelier Ryan Arnold.  Each evening aboard the Manitou we will discuss the wine making histories and taste the varietals of different countries.  Dinners will feature paired wines chosen by Amanda as a perfect complement to our meals.

Graduate of the University of Montana, sommelier Ryan Arnold studied in both Torino and Rome during his college years and it was here that he first fell in love with food and wine.

In 2004, he began his career as a member of the opening team for Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises (LEYE) Chicago restaurant Osteria Via Stato, and was reintroduced to Italian wine in the States, further sparking his passion and inspiration to pursue a career in the wine business. Arnold followed his vision, and in 2006, he accepted a position with local Italian wine importer Vin Divino. He quickly moved up the ranks and was promoted to regional manager shortly thereafter.

In 2010, Arnold joined Winebow, a large New York-based import company, and opened their Chicago branch. Two years later, Arnold rejoined the LEYE team as Divisional Wine Director where he develops various wine programs at restaurants including Ema, Summer House Santa Monica, il Porcellino, Stella Barra, Hub 51, Beatrix and more.

In 2015, Ryan was named Wine Enthusiasts 40 under 40 and Star Chefs’ Chicago Rising Star Sommelier.

Outside of the world of wine, Arnold’s passion is traveling and experiencing new cultures. A member of the NBC Olympic hospitality team, Arnold continues his worldly exploration, and has participated in the implementation and logistics of NBC’s Client program for the Athens, Torino, Beijing, Vancouver, London and most recently the Rio games. In his spare time he enjoys biking, rock climbing, traveling, and cooking and resides in the Logan Square neighborhood of Chicago.

4 Day Season Finale Cruise

Join us as we embark on our final cruise of the season, exploring the islands and bays of northern Lake Michigan.

A deposit of $350 per person is required at the time of reservation.  The balance is due 30 days before the date of the sail. Reservations cancelled more than 30 days prior to sailing will be refunded, less a $25 per person processing fee.  If cancellation occurs within 30 days of sailing Traverse Tall Ship Company, LLC reserves the right to keep any funds collected.

Advance purchase highly recommended!

Book early to guarantee your space!

Book online now!

Top-rated sails by hundreds of past guests