No Boat? No Problem! Here’s How to Get Out On The Water This Summer


Nothing says summer on the shore quite like boating and thankfully, outdoor recreation is one of the safest activities we can do right now. Whether it’s getting a private sailing lesson or chartering a yacht with your pod, these sailing and boating options are the perfect way to relax on the water safely this summer.

Argia Mystic Cruises offers two-hour day sails or sunset cruises aboard the 81’ schooner. These cruises can be private or shared; for the joint boating adventures, careful COVID safety measures have been instituted. The boat will operate at 50% capacity with seating zones six feet apart to ensure social distancing. To accommodate for this change, tickets are only being sold in packs of two or three. To purchase four tickets or more, give them a call. No food or drink will be served aboard the Argia, but you’re welcome to bring your own small cooler. Tickets for daytime cruises are $53, increasing to $56 for the special sunset tours. 

Argia sets sail from 12 Steamboat Wharf, Mystic. Call them at (860) 536-0416.


Mystic Boat Adventures is the perfect date option, as their cozy boats fit two people. While social distancing is already taken care of, extensive sanitation and safety procedures have been put in place to clean boats before and after use. If a group outing is more your speed, you can book multiple 2-seater boats and cruise around together. Maximum group size is 8 people, split between 4 boats. Book a one hour tour for $75 per person, or a 3 hour tour for $135 per person. Pack a small cooler with snacks and drinks on the longer tour. 

Mystic Boat Adventures is located at 145 Pearl Street, Noank, Groton.


Gather your group and charter the beautiful antique picnic boat from Mystic River Cruises. Private cruises are available for up to 6 people. Pack your own lunch for the day cruise, or sip on cocktails during the sunset cruise. Tickets are $40 per person or $20 for kids (12 & under) for daytime boating, $50 per person or $25 for kids at sunset. Rides available 9am to 7pm daily, depending on the timing of the sunset. Push off from Seaport Marine at 2 Washington Street in Mystic. Call (860) 912-3404 for more information.


Mystic Seaport is the one-stop-shop for any of your boating needs. Rent a sailboat, rowboat, or even a pedal boat for an hour, and all for free. These options vary in capacity from 2-5 people. For those more comfortable as a passenger, grab a spot for a 25-minute cruise aboard the sailboat Liberty; tickets are first-come-first-serve. Another option is the Breck Marshall, a 20’ Crosby catboat reproduction. The Breck Marshall has a four-person max capacity for social distancing, or six-person if all in the same family. Tickets are very affordable at $8 per person. For a longer adventure, charter a private cruise on the lobster yacht Mamie. Enjoy the day swimming and lounging on the beach as your captain navigates the Sound. Maximum of six passengers, bring your own food and drink. Visit their website for quotes and to reserve. Mystic Seaport is located at 75 Greenmanville Ave., Mystic.


Geraldina Charters specializes in small group cruises–perfect for girls day out, corporate or couples charters. Up to six people can fit on the beautiful 45’ Viking Power Yacht. Venture off to summer destinations like Montauk and Shelter Island on a full-day charter, starting at $899 for six people, or stay closer to the shoreline for $699. For a half-day charter, cruise around and then anchor down at Duck Island for lunch or dinner, sunbathing and swimming. This 4-hour option starts at $499 for six people. Bring your own food and drink. Charters leave from Cedar Island Marina in Clinton, located at 34 Riverside Drive. Email for more information.


Thames River Heritage Park offers water taxi rides to historic sites at an affordable cost, all with comprehensive COVID-19 safety plans in place. Taxis are operating at 50% capacity, with seating areas 6 feet apart for passengers, except for groups of 3 from the same household. A maximum of 21 passengers will be allowed on the boat at a given time, and masks are required for all on board. Venture to historic Groton and New London sites along the Thames, or sign up for one of the themed rides like Women of the Thames or Revolutionary Ghosts for a more informational afternoon. Taxis leave from 1 Water Street in Mystic on Friday-Sunday.


Carefree Boats delivers all of the perks of owning a boat with none of the hassle (or expense). This private boat club has two locations nearby, in Clinton and Noank, and hundreds of locations across the country and world, from California and Florida to the British Virgin Islands and the Philippines. Membership costs only a fraction of normal boat ownership and cuts out all of the time-consuming maintenance. On-the-water instruction is available for newbies as well. Visit their shoreline locations at 1 East Main Street in Clinton or 145 Pearl Street in Noank, Groton. Call (866) 826-2846 for more information.