Pearl of the Lake: Authentic Mississippi River Paddlewheel Boat

"Lake Pepin ought to be visited by every poet and painter in the land." -- William Cullen Bryant. It is the largest natural Lake on the Mississippi River and is surrounded with beautiful, soaring bluffs. Commonly referred to as "North America's Lake Lucerne", visitors from all over the world come to Lake Pepin each year to enjoy the most beautiful part of the Mississippi River.

Guests learn about the unique environment and geology that formed the Upper Mississippi in our area. Historical features include the birthplace of Laura Ingalls Wilder, the invention of water-skiing, the only working lighthouse on the river and the largest marina on the entire length of the river. Folklore includes a mysterious Lake Monster dubbed "Pepie" that has been seen swimming on the Lake for centuries! We often experience close-up encounters with eagles and other wildlife during our tours.

Each of our tours is fully narrated and provides exciting "edu-tainment".

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Latitude: 44.462098 Longitude: -92.284027 Elevation: 679 ft
the best travel advice comes from the people who live here
Larry Nielson

About the Vessel

Pearl is an authentic replica of the paddlewheel boats that plied the mighty Mississippi River. True to tradition, her paddles are the only method of propulsion with NO propellers. She was originally built in 1982 at LaCrosse, WI and operated in Arkansas and Tennessee. In 2006, local businessman Larry Nielson purchased and renovated her and brought her to Lake Pepin to operate as "Pearl of the Lake".

There are modern restrooms on board and a full-service bar with beverages and light food available to purchase. The lower level is climate controlled and the upper level is open air with a canopy above.

Seats and tables are a comfortable banquet style. We use open seating, and guests are free to walk around and explore the boat. Oftentimes, passengers will have the opportunity to visit the helm and help drive the Pearl for a first hand "Captain's experience".

Seasons Open and Departure

We operate from Mid-May through October

Length of Tour

Most cruises are 90 minutes long

Costs and Fees

$10 for kids 6-13, $17 for adults and $15 for seniors 65 and older

Appropriate Age Groups

All ages

How to Find the Departure Point

Our dock is located at the North end of Lake City at the intersection of Highway 61 and Central Point Road.

Locally or Family-Owned Business Notes

Owned and operated by local businessman, Captain Larry Nielson.

Accessibility Notes

We are handicap accessible and welcome all guests. If you have special needs please call ahead so we can adequatly prepare for your trip.

Pet Friendly Notes

On many of our cruises we can allow pets. Please call ahead to verify that your pet will work for the day and time you desire.

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