Hello, I’m captain Tom Drohan.
We Started Destiny Harbor Tours in 2007 to give people of all ages a chance to have the Puget Sound experience “up close and personal” for a very reasonable price! We operate two authentic, restored U.S. Navy boats that are U.S.C.G. certified for up to 33 passengers each. Our boats “Destiny” and “Maritime” are named for Tacoma, the city of Destiny and Maritime for Gig Harbor, the Maritime City.
We invite you, your family, friends and visitors to come on our exciting adventure to experience the beauty, wildlife and history that only Destiny Harbor Tours can offer… Bring your camera!
GETTING STARTED with Destiny Harbor Tours
Q: Do I go for a Destiny Harbor Tour or a Private Charter?
What are the differences?
A: You can be on a regular scheduled tour with other guests (choose from a 1 or 2 hour long tour). Call us in advance to confirm our schedule and locations for the day as weather, special events and private charters can create the need for changes from our base schedule. For groups of 6 or more a reservation is recommended. You will be charged and ticketed at the pier before departure. Non-alcohol beverages and snacks are allowed. (Remember there is not a potty on board but there is at the departure and return locations) or…
You can reserve a private charter for just your group (of 1 to 33 people) for a duration of your choosing (up to 4 hours recommended.) Boats are licensed for up to 35 people. 30 or so could be comfortable for about 2 hours depending on the people and the trip. Any fewer than 30 just gives you more space. With about 24 people, things are pretty comfortable!
Tour times are measured from when we leave the departure dock until we return to let you off where we started the cruise. I figure 20 minutes for loading at the start and 10 minutes at the end for disembarking. There is no charge for this time. You can bring food and beverages on the trip but consider that there is no galley on board so come ready to serve what you have. (Remember there is no potty on board either but there are bathrooms at the departure and return locations).
Q: How does the level of the tide affect when we should take a Destiny Harbor Tour?
A: If anyone in your group has a mobility challenge, choosing a time where the tide is high to moderate can make getting to and from the boat safer and easier. Here on Puget Sound, there is a big tidal exchange 4 times per day. Some exchanges are as much as 14 feet in a 6 hour period. This change can dramatically affect how steep the gangway ramps are from the pier to the dock. In general, when the tide is 5 feet or above it is in a mid to upper height which means ramps will be moderately to less steep. You can check the predicted tide level for any day and time in our area by calling us or clicking: www.mobilegeographics.com:81/locations/2152
Q: Are your boats, piers and docks for Destiny Harbor Tours wheelchair accessible?
A: Our Museum of Glass location’s ramp is the longest and widest so it is the least steep and most accessible one that we use and is wheelchair accessible. A tour from this dock would be the least mobility restricted at any tide level. While our boats are not wheelchair accessible, we have been successful at safely loading and unloading many folks with mobility challenges who were thrilled to be able to make the trip and had a great time! If we are informed in advance, we should be able to safely lock up wheel chairs on the pier for the duration of the tour.
Q: What is it like on board Destiny Harbor Tours?
A: Both boats are open so the views are fantastic! Some seats are more out of the wind, some are not. Depending on the boat’s speed and direction, the warm or cool breeze you may feel changes temperature and direction. Guests can move around on board to a degree to change how much wind they feel.
It is possible to encounter a rain shower and some seats are more susceptible to sea spray depending on wind conditions. We recommend keeping any sea spray off your cameras and phones. Of course we will not be responsible for any damage to your property or personal effects. We try to keep people as comfortable as possible during the trip and make changing recommendations depending on the weather, our course and speed.
The sides of the boat are of ample height to keep all people safely inside. The captain asks that all guests keep the rail above their waist and adults must manage children to do the same (or the captain will!). All guests should bring some layers of upper clothing. I have found that a fleece jacket plus a thin windbreaker has proven to be good for typical summer operations. Additionally all guests should have the hats, water, sunscreen, camera and camera batteries they would need for an outdoor adventure or a sporting event! After all, You’re Doing Something Real!
(Listed by point of departure)
Destiny Harbor Tours from Tacoma
We are located on the water side of the Museum of Glass and 1817 Dock St., Tacoma 98402.
All parking is pay parking. You can park on the street or in the parking garage under the Museum of glass. Thea Foss Waterway, City Views, & Bridges, Old Town, Brown’s Point, Ships, Tugs & the working Port of Tacoma, Wildlife, History, Ecology on Puget Sound.
Click here for map of the Tacoma departure location
We tour the Thea Foss Waterway, SR 509 cable-stayed bridge, 11th. St. (Murray Morgan) Bridge, Grain terminal and Navy reserve ships. We see all ships, boats, tugs and barges in the area. Continuing into the Blair waterway (on the 2 hour only) we often observe cargo handling and shipping activity. Of-course during the trip there are ample views of all mountains, the famous Stadium High School, Vashon and Maury Islands, plus views over toward Brown’s Point, Pt. Defiance and Gig Harbor.
There are tons of things to see! We talk about highlights without taking away from the feeling of just being there. Sea birds, seals and other wildlife may be seen on this trip. However the themes are primarily the manifold man-made things, stunning natural vistas and the frequent opportunity to see ships and port operations in action.
Destiny Harbor Tours from Gig Harbor
Tours gathers at the bench on the walk down to the dock at Anthony’s Restaurant: 8829 N. Harborview Dr. Gig Harbor, WA 98332.
Very limited, free on-street parking. Restaurant parking lot is off limits during dining hours. Try Franklin St. one street up the hill. Walk down the Finholm view-climb stairs and cross the street.
Click here for map of the Gig Harbor departure location
Gig Harbor, Narrows Bridges / Galloping Gertie, Salmon Beach, Point Defiance Tour (2 Hours)
The tour from Gig Harbor gathers at the bench on the walk down to the dock at Anthony’s Restaurant and glides out into Gig Harbor revealing the sights, sounds and feelings that you should find enchanting and inspiring.
We will leave the harbor, negotiating the narrow passage at the mouth of Gig Harbor. Then we head down into the narrows past Pt. Evans as the Narrows Bridges come in view. Bobbing along in the current, we pause to take in the grandeur of our two bridges and remember “Galloping Gertie” that lays on the sea floor below us.
Starting our return heading north, we pause for a photo of the entire span. We add power through the Narrows current and then glide past storied Salmon Beach and Pt. Defiance. Frequently we see sea lions and harbor seals feeding on fish under the bridges. Bald eagles can be spotted all along the route. After floating a bit in the tide rip current off Pt. “D” we head toward Gig Harbor, running close to the beach and light house. Then as we move into the protected bay we take in the incredible scene that unfolds. We’re back in Gig Harbor!