This Cruise Ship Sails into Thunder Bay

Now you can sail from Milwaukee into Ontario's Northwest on the Great Lakes Explorer. Here's everything you need to know about the Viking Octantis.

There's a new ship in town! Thunder Bay is welcoming the latest addition to its vibrant waterfront—a spectacular summer cruise that sails between the Northwest Ontario city and Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 

Photo of Sleeping Giant near Thunder Bay courtesy of Viking Cruises

The cruise is called the Great Lakes Explorer and is on offer from Viking Cruises. Travellers will set sail on the brand new Viking Octantis expedition ship that's packed with amenities—and specially designed to navigate the inland canals of the Great Lakes. 

Photo courtesy of Scott MacKay

There are 8 stops on this scenic Great Lakes voyage and travellers can choose to set sail from either city. Here's everything to expect on the 7-day adventure and some travel tips on the best things to do in Thunder Bay—either before or after your epic journey. 

Photo courtesy of Scott MacKay 

What Are the Ports of Call on the Great Lakes Explorer?

For travellers choosing to start their journey in Thunder Bay, the stops are as follows. 

1. Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada

Kakabeka Falls near Thunder Bay is a popular destination for nature-seekers.

The waterfront city of Thunder Bay is the jewel of Northwestern Ontario. Set on the shores of Lake Superior the city is known for its art-filled downtown, Indigenous art galleries, and easy access to some of Canada's most scenic landscapes. Hike boreal forests, watch for wildlife, and learn about Anishinaabe First Nations heritage.

2. Silver Islet, Ontario, Canada

Kayak across the remains of the world's largest silver mine in Silver Islet.

Kayak over the remains of what was once the world's largest silver mine or visit the steep slopes of Ouimet Canyon. Visitors even have the option of exploring in an underwater submarine! Check out the top things to do in Silver Islet

3. Scenic Sailing: Soo Locks Transit

Sail the St. Mary’s River and cross the Soo Locks, between Canada and the United States. Check out our guide to the Sault Ste. Marie waterfront. 

4-6. Explore Georgian Bay with Stops in Perry Sound, Killarney, and Manitoulin Island

Discover some of the 30,000 islands that comprise this UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

7. Mackinac Island, Michigan, United States

Explore this car-free island by carriage, bicycle or on foot; kayak along the shoreline.

8. Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Explore this revitalized town along the shores of Lake Michigan.

Book Your Voyage on the Great Lakes Explorer Today

Check out some frequently asked questions about the Great Lakes Explorer Viking Cruise. To book visit the website, call at 1-800-381-4596, or contact your travel advisor.

About Northern Ontario

Welcome to Northern Ontario, Canada! Bigger than Texas, wilder than the west, more welcoming than a campfire in October, Northern Ontario is like no place else. Sunset Country is famous for its spectacular fishing lakes, Superior Country stretches into the deep north wildnerness, Algoma Country has Lake Superior as their back yard, and the Northeast provides excellent vacation destinations close to Toronto and other large urban centres in Southern Ontario.

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