Harriot II Riverboat (Montgomery) Travel Guide
Amidst Montgomery’s rich tapestry of history and culture, the Harriott II Riverboat stands as a proud reminder of the city’s ties to the Alabama River.
Whether you’re a Montgomery native or a tourist eager to experience Southern hospitality at its finest, a cruise on the Harriott II is an experience you won’t want to miss. This guide delves into the magic of the Harriott II, offering insights and tips for a memorable voyage.
- Introduction to the Harriott II Riverboat
The Harriott II Riverboat, anchored at Montgomery’s Riverfront Park, is a majestic 19th-century riverboat replica. With its gleaming white facade, grand paddlewheel, and red accents, it’s a nostalgic throwback to the days when steamboats ruled the rivers.
- A Glimpse into History
While the Harriott II itself is a modern construction, Montgomery has a longstanding riverboat history. The original Harriott, for which Harriott II is named, operated in the 1820s, transporting cotton, goods, and passengers along the Alabama River. Today’s riverboat is a tribute to this storied past, ensuring that Montgomery’s riverboat legacy continues to thrive.
- Cruising Options
The Harriott II offers a range of cruising experiences tailored to different tastes:
a. Scenic Cruises: Perfect for those looking to relax and enjoy the Alabama River’s tranquil beauty. These cruises often come with insightful narrations about Montgomery’s history and its relationship with the river.
b. Dinner Cruises: A gourmet experience, these cruises feature a delicious spread of Southern dishes, live music, and dancing.
c. Themed Nights: From jazz nights to blues cruises, the Harriott II frequently hosts themed evenings, allowing guests to immerse themselves in rich musical traditions.
d. Private Charters: For special occasions, the riverboat can be privately chartered, offering a personalized experience for guests.
- Amenities Onboard
Spread over three levels, the Harriott II boasts a range of amenities:
a. The Saloon Deck: Featuring a full-service bar, concessions, and restrooms.
b. The Jubilee Deck: This is where you’ll find the dance floor, band stage, and another full-service bar.
c. The Patriot Deck: Perfect for taking in panoramic river views, it offers open-air seating and a bird’s-eye view of the paddlewheel in action.
- What to Expect Onboard
A cruise on the Harriott II is more than just a ride; it’s an experience. Guests can expect:
a. Engaging Entertainment: From live bands to DJs, there’s always something to keep guests entertained.
b. Delicious Southern Cuisine: Depending on the cruise, guests might enjoy a buffet dinner, snacks, or themed meals.
c. A Friendly Crew: Known for their Southern hospitality, the crew is always on hand to ensure guests have a memorable experience.
- Tips for Travelers
a. Reservations: Popular cruises, especially themed or dinner cruises, can fill up quickly. It’s advisable to book in advance.
b. Attire: While daytime cruises are generally casual, evening cruises, especially those with dinner and dancing, might have a dressier code.
c. Weather: Given the Patriot Deck’s open nature, it’s a good idea to check the weather forecast and dress accordingly.
- Nearby Attractions
The Harriott II docks at Riverfront Park, making it easy for guests to explore surrounding attractions:
a. Riverwalk: A scenic trail ideal for walking or jogging with picturesque views of the Alabama River.
b. Montgomery Biscuits Baseball: If you’re lucky, you might catch a game at the nearby Riverwalk Stadium.
c. Amphitheater: Located right in Riverfront Park, the amphitheater hosts a range of concerts, festivals, and events throughout the year.
- Reviews and Testimonials
Guests frequently highlight the Harriott II’s romantic ambiance, making it a popular choice for anniversaries and date nights. The combination of southern food, soulful music, and the gentle sway of the riverboat creates a magical experience cherished by many.
- Accessibility and Facilities
The Harriott II is equipped to accommodate guests with disabilities. However, it’s always a good idea to check in advance regarding specific needs.
Montgomery’s Harriott II Riverboat is more than just a mode of transportation; it’s a voyage through time. It’s an ode to the bygone era of grand riverboats, of sultry Southern nights filled with music, laughter, and the gentle murmur of the Alabama River. Whether you’re a history buff, a music enthusiast, or someone simply seeking a unique experience, the Harriott II promises a journey you’ll cherish long after you’ve disembarked.