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

  • 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.
  • Night 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.
  • 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.
  • On all public cruises, we are permitting outside snacks be brought on board but ask that you limit it to concession stand items only. Examples of this include: candy bars, small bag of chips or a cookie. We will not allow pizza boxes, popcorn, coolers, to-go boxes from restaurants and other items as such on board. Ultimately, it will be left to the crew’s discretion if a questionable item is allowed, taking into consideration if it may hinder the other guest’s experience.  We will offer a concession stand with pop/water for sale (cash only), dependent of COVID guidelines in place at the time.  In addition, on all Night Sky and 4th of July Cruises (ONLY) we will offer bar service.  On all cruises we kindly prohibit bringing on board any personal beverages, including alcohol.  Please check back closer to the date of your cruise for possible restriction updates regarding any of these procedures.
  • 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. In the event of a cancellation, a full refund will be provided within one week to all ticket holders.
  • For the 2021 season – Lighthouse Cruises are refundable 48 hours prior to the cruise departure. Night Sky and 4th of July cruise tickets are non-refundable once the purchase is made.