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Paddlewheel Steamboat Cruise on the Mississippi River, New Orleans

Experience the old, vast and timeless Mississippi River on the authentic steamboat Natchez as part of this group bus trip. Steamboats like the Natchez played a major role in the development of the Mississippi River during the 19th century. Transporting passengers and freight, these boats used their steam power to travel up and down the river. While the development of railroads resulted in less passenger traffic, these historic boats continued to serve Mississippi River commerce until the early 20th century. Today establishments such as the New Orleans Steamboat Company keep the romance and history of steamboats like the Natchez alive through preservation of the steamboats and educating the public about their history on their authentic steamboat river cruises.

Sternwheeler Steamboat Natchez

In April of 1975, the Natchez was launched in Braithwaite, Louisiana just miles below New Orleans on the Mississippi River. Modeled after steamboats Hudson and Virginia, the steamboat is 265 feet long and 46 feet wide. It weighs in at 1,384 tons. Throughout her rich past, the Natchez was used as part of U.S. President Gerald Ford’s Natchez political campaign trip to the Southern United States in 1976. In 1982 she won the Great Steamboat Race, part of the Kentucky Derby Festival held each year in Louisville, Kentucky.

View of the Paddlewheel Stemboat Natchez

Have Fun on the Steamboat Natchez

View of the Paddlewheel Stemboat Natchez

Enjoy Your Steamboat River Cruise

View of the Paddlewheel Stemboat Natchez

Immerse Yourself in History

View of the Paddlewheel Stemboat Natchez Have Fun on the Steamboat Natchez
View of the Paddlewheel Stemboat Natchez Enjoy Your Steamboat River Cruise
View of the Paddlewheel Stemboat Natchez Immerse Yourself in History

Discover Historical Facts and See the Highlights of the Port of New Orleans during Your Harbor Cruis

During your paddlewheel steamboat cruise you will enjoy a voyage on the Natchez that features the highlights of the Port of New Orleans. The steamboat’s museum quality Steam Engine Room offers something for everyone to explore. Gifts and souvenirs can be purchased from the Steamboat Natchez Gift Shop.

The Paddlewheel Steamboat Cruise Experience

Board the Natchez on the Riverwalk, close to New Orleans’ French Quarter. The two-hour, round-trip cruise will take you back to 19th century Mississippi as a guide provides live narration of historical facts and highlights of one of the world’s most active ports. Delve into New Orleans’ past as you cruise by historic sites like Chalmette Battlefield, where French-American pirate and privateer, Jean Lafitte, and his buccaneers joined forces with Andrew Jackson to defend New Orleans during the Battle of New Orleans. Learn how the port inspired timeless characters in literature like Mark Twain’s Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer. Discover the hustle and bustle that takes place along the busy port today. Spectacular skyline views of the city are also part of your harbor cruise experience.

The Steam Engine Room

Be sure to explore the Natchez’s museum quality Steam Engine Room. Highlights of the Steam Engine Room include the tandem compound condensing reciprocating steam engines from the towboat Clairton. Look for the giant wood paddle wheel at the stern. The white oak and steel paddle wheel is the sole means of forward and reverse motion for the steamboat. The steering gear as well as the large pitman arms that connect the engines to the paddlewheel are also from the towboat Clairton.

The Steamboat Natchez Gift Shop

If time permits, enjoy shopping in the Steamboat Natchez Gift Shop. Tapestry throws featuring the Sternwheeler Steamboat Natchez, sweatshirts with the Natchez logo, Natchez hat pins and many other items for steamboat enthusiasts are available for purchase in the Gift Shop.

Travel Tips

- Be sure to ask about the Natchez’s steam calliope, a 32-note steam pipe organ which replicates the Thomas J. Nichols Steam Calliopes built almost 100 years ago.

- Seating aboard the Natchez can be found both indoors and under covered areas on the deck.

- Don’t forget your camera. There will be exciting photo opportunities during your paddlewheel steamboat cruise.