Please be sure to read all cruise related FAQs prior to purchasing tickets.


Before You Go:

  • Scheduled cruises may operate in inclement weather including rain or fog.  Please plan to wear layers (including a jacket and/or windbreaker), dressing for a variety of wind and sea conditions.
  • Passengers of all ages, even infants, are required to have a ticket for boarding (does not apply to Shepler’s private charter cruises).
  • Guests with Lighthouse cruise paper gift certificates, are required to present their certificates at the Mackinaw City dock office in exchange for a boarding voucher.  To book a cruise using a gift certificate, please call 231-436-5023.


  • All scheduled cruises depart from and return to our Mackinaw City dock unless otherwise noted.
  • Guests departing on a Shepler’s scheduled cruise enjoy complimentary parking in our Mackinaw City Day Lot at 311 South Nicolet Street.
  • Please plan to arrive one (1) hour prior to the cruise departure time.
  • Guests purchasing a cruise ticket are assigned a boarding number at time of purchase.  Boarding number dictates the order in which guests board.  Once boarded, guests may choose any seat they prefer.
  • Boarding for all cruises begins 30 minutes prior to departure time.


  • Lighthouse cruises are narrated by members of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association and donates 10% of all cruise profits to assist with their mission and preservation efforts.
  • Dark Sky cruises are narrated by dark sky expert Mary Stewart Adams.
  • Direction and duration of all scheduled cruises is subject to change at the captain and crew’s discretion due to unforeseen circumstances such as weather.
  • Outside food or beverages of any kind are not permitted on Shepler’s scheduled cruises (does not pertain to private charter cruises).
  • Smoking is not permitted on any Shepler’s motor vessel.
  • Only trained service animals are permitted on any Shepler’s scheduled cruise.  Pets are not permitted.
  • Restrooms are available on all scheduled cruises.

Cancellations and Refunds:

  • Shepler’s reserves the right to cancel a cruise at any time, or return to port early due to any unforeseen circumstance such as weather or a change in sea conditions.  Should Shepler’s cancel a cruise, a full refund will be provided within one week to all ticket holders.
  • All Night Sky Cruise and 4th of July Cruise tickets are non-refundable and non-transferable.
  • Lighthouse Cruise tickets are refundable up to 48 hours prior to your departure date and time.