Blount Small Ship Adventures
- American-crewed ships carry no more than 100 passengers
- Line offers family-style meals and friendly ambience
- Emphasis on off-the-beaten-path coastal, lake, river and canal areas of the Americas
- Passengers tend to be mature, well-traveled Americans
OnboardBlount Small Ship Adventures operates two American-flagged, shallow-draft coastal cruise vessels that offer simple yet comfortable accommodations. Each vessel has a forward observation lounge that can seat all passengers at one time for social gatherings, sightseeing, reading, local entertainment and the line's enrichment program. One deck below, the dining room with an open serving kitchen seats all passengers at one time at mostly round tables of six and eight. The food is good all-American fare, often reflecting the cruising region. The crew all hail from the States.
Alcohol is not sold, but wine is offered on special occasions, and passengers are encouraged to bring aboard their own supply of alcoholic beverages. Storage facilities, setups, and soft drinks are complimentary, and the crew can point out top-up stores along the way.
Cabins, scattered over three decks, include outside and inside cabins, all very small and all having private showers, sinks and toilets. Some cabins open to the outside deck, others to a traditional inside corridor. Some open both ways.
Organized activities and usual shipboard pastimes -- such as bingo, spas, shopping and major stage shows -- found on big ships are absent. The emphasis is more on socializing, sightseeing and, depending on the itinerary, swimming, snorkeling, sunbathing and glass-bottom boat riding. Evening entertainment is usually a lecture, followed by cards, reading and videos. Local bands and entertainers come aboard in some ports. Shore excursions are extra and may be bought as an advance-purchase package or individually onboard.
About Blount Small Ship AdventuresThe company was started as the American Canadian Line (and, until recently, was called American Canadian Caribbean Line) in the mid-1960's by Yankee entrepreneur Luther Blount, who built his cruise vessels in his own Rhode Island shipyard. His three daughters now run the cruise line and shipyard, which also constructs excursion boats and ferries.
Blount Small Ship Adventures FleetThe present fleet consists of the nearly identical 1997-built Grande Caribe and 1988-built Grande Mariner, each 184 feet long and taking up to 98 passengers. They're American built with American officers and crew. The ships are designed to reach bodies of water and ports that bigger vessels can't visit. Each has a retractable pilothouse that allows it to pass under low railroad bridges, and a shallow 66" draft permits river and canal cruising and landing close to shore. Other features include a bow ramp for beach landings, an underwater exploration camera and a swimming platform in the stern.
Fellow PassengersPassengers are mostly well traveled and nearly or completely retired Americans and Canadians, with some Australians now finding their way to Blount. The company has developed an extremely loyal fan base that returns for many different itineraries.
Blount Small Ship Adventures Member Reviews
Travelled from NYC up the Hudson River, through the multiple locks on the Erie and Oswego Canals, into Lake Ontario, through more locks on the St. ... Read more
We, a couple in our 50s, have sailed many times with Blount (formerly ACCL - American Canadian Caribbean Line) and absolutely love it. Here's the ... Read more
We had heard wonderful things about this cruise line. The idea of a smaller more intimate cruise held a lot of appeal. Unfortunately, the idea was ... Read more
The Grande Mariner is old and shows it age; the shower was rusty and mildewed. That said, everything else was acceptable. And the crew kept our ... Read more
Background: Blount Small Ship Adventures truly marches to a different drummer in the cruise industry. A family owned company, the term family will ... Read more
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