A view of the Renaissance Center from aboard the Diamond Jack.

Cruising on the Diamond Jack

Did you know the Beatles once stayed at the now abandoned Whittier Hotel along the Detroit Riverfront? Or that the Peace Tower on Belle Isle is named after influential Detroit News columnist Nancy Brown, whose readers donated to build it during the Great Depression?

These are just two of the countless fun facts and historical anecdotes passengers will learn about during the two-hour narrated sightseeing boat tour along the Detroit River on Diamond Jack’s River Tours.

For those looking to see Detroit in a whole new way, Diamond Jack’s River Tours offer a fun, unique and exciting experience. Passengers can take in the breathtaking panoramic views of the river and the famous Detroit skyline from either the open-air deck or seated at comfortable group tables inside below deck.

Also below deck you’ll find a modest concession stand with a few snacks and beverages, but I recommend grabbing lunch before. The stand does offer a small selection of draft beer for purchase. I also recommend arriving early to get a place in line as seats on the top deck fill up fast and admission is first-come, first-served.

The Ambassador Bridge seen from aboard the Diamond Jack.

In Detroit, the Diamond Jack tours load along the Detroit Riverfront at Rivard Plaza (there’s also a downriver tour that docks in Wyandotte). From there, the tour route will take you all the way down toward Lake St. Clair, loop around Belle Isle, down the Canadian side taking in sights of Windsor, underneath the breathtaking Ambassador Bridge before completing the loop near Historic Fort Wayne and the old Boblo Island loading dock.

Diamond Jack’s tours are available June through September on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays with departure times at 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.

Tickets are $17 for adults, $15 for seniors (over 60), $13 for children ages 6-16, and free for children under 5. Keep an eye out for a Groupon deal on great discounted tickets, or take advantage of this coupon offer for a $10 ride for Thursday or Friday.

Have you been aboard the Diamond Jack? What are some of your favorite sights along the Detroit Riverfront?

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