This romantic cruise along The Esplanade and into the Charles River includes:
- A PRIVATE, hour-long cruise
- A live accordion player
- A dozen roses
- Custom, framed photograph of your tour in a Gondola di Venezia frame
- Custom made set of 2 wine or champagne glasses in a gift box
- Non-alcoholic sparkling cider
- A basket of cheese & crackers
- Fresh strawberries
- Rich chocolates
Up to 4 additional passengers may board at a charge of $15 per person.
All tours include an ice bucket, ice, and champagne or wine glasses. Dont forget to bring your favorite vintage of champagne or wine!
At night, votive candles will be lit to create the perfect romantic ambiance. Couples, don't forget - a kiss under any bridge brings good luck to all!
Incredible photo opportunities include the Boston and Cambridge skylines, featuring Fenway Park, the Citgo Sign, the Bunker Hill Monument, MIT, and the Hancock and Prudential Towers; the Longfellow Bridge, Venetian-style bridges and lighted fountains; the famous Dragon Boats; and, depending on time of day, amazingly romantic sunsets!
What Is Not Included?
* A gratuity for your gondolier, while not required, is greatly appreciated.
NOTE: It is illegal to consume alcohol anywhere on The Esplanade except while on the gondola!
- Are these authentic gondolas?
- Yes! Both gondolas were built in Venice, Italy. Everything about the boat, the gondolier, the style of rowing, and his uniform are real. The owners have gone to incredible lengths to maintain the ancient Venetian traditions regarding the gondola and to present the Boston Gondolas experience as 100% authentic. There are few authentic gondolas in all of North America and we proudly share our passion for these boats with you.
- Is it necessary to purchase tickets in advance?
- Yes, advance purchase is required for the Bellissimo tour. To maximize your chances of getting the day and time you prefer, please book well in advance. Tickets can be purchased with a Visa, Mastercard or American Express.
- Will there be other people on the tour with us?
- No! All tours are completely private, so only those passengers in your party will be on board.
- Can I bring my own wine or champagne?
- Provided you are of legal age and have ID, yes! We encourage you to bring a bottle of champagne, wine, sparkling cider or any other beverage that may enhance your experience. (Corkscrews and bottle openers are available for your use on the gondola.) There is a liquor store at the corner of Beacon St. and Charles St. for those who wish to purchase before a scheduled tour.
- Is it customary to tip the staff?
- Your gondoliers row for the love of it and work hard to make your experience a happy and memorable one. They are compensated by gratuities and appreciate everyone's generosity. The range of tipping is 15% to 30%. If you feel a gratuity is not deserved, please do not tip, and let us know why. We appreciate your feedback.
- Isn't it illegal to consume alcohol at The Esplanade?
- Yes, it is!!! Boston Gondolas has special permission to allow guests to drink their own champagne, wine, or beer while on the gondolas to enhance the experience. You may not consume alcohol on The Esplanade either before or after your tour.
- Can I purchase food or drink at the Esplanade?
- The Esplanade Cafe is generally open from 10 AM until 6 PM and they sell soft drinks, sandwiches, hot dogs, pretzels, coffee and an assortment of other snacks. They do not sell alcohol!! Remember, please do not bring food to eat on the gondolas!
- When does the season run?
- Tours are operated from late May through the end of October.
- Where should I park my car?
- The most popular option is to take advantage of the valet parking at Maggianno's Little Italy, 75 Chestnut St., or the Hungry I at 71 Charles St. The Boston Common Parking Garage is located between the Boston Common and the Public Garden on -0- Charles St 02116. Using parking meters on the streets is another option. There are hundreds of parking meters around the Public Gardens, Boston Common, Beacon St. (near Cheers), Arlington St. and Charles St.
- What happens if it rains?
- Tours proceed as scheduled in light rain and other mild weather conditions. Tours will only be cancelled at the discretion of Boston Gondolas, and we will only cancel in the event of moderate rain, severe wind, or dangerous weather conditions. If you have purchased tickets for a tour that is cancelled, you will have the opportunity to reschedule your tickets (subject to availability) or receive credit towards a future event. Some of our most memorable and wonderful tours have taken place in these conditions!
- Can seniors easily get on board?
- Yes! It is very simple and takes little effort getting on and off of our gondolas. Your gondolier will always assist you. We take many seniors on tours and we always have a blast!
- Can children come on a gondola tour?
- Yes! Children under 10 years of age can come aboard free of charge and without a ticket as long as they are accompanied by an adult. We have many families with children come aboard and we always have a blast! (Remember, children 12 years of age or younger must wear a life jacket.) Please also keep in mind that the gondola is permitted to carry up to 6 adults, and up to 7 passengers if at least one passenger is a child under 10.
- Are the gondolas handicapped accessible?
- We have yet to deny any person with a handicap access to our gondolas. The Esplanade is wheelchair accessible by means of using a ramp over The Arthur Fiedler footbridge. The boarding dock has a ramp as well, so there are no stairs. We will have to assist you out of your wheelchair and onto the gondola, as wheelchairs cannot be allowed on the gondolas. There is also available parking on The Esplanade for handicapped persons.
- Are there restrooms on the gondolas?
- No, but there are public restrooms on The Esplanade that are generally open until 8:00 PM.
- What is the best time for a tour?
- There is no such thing as a best time! Just a few guidelines: Families and groups tend to find the daylight hours or late afternoons more appealing. If you are looking for a romantic experience, night tours offer more privacy. Sunset tours are highly sought after. There is only 1 time per day that the sun will set, so buy your tickets far in advance!
- What time is sunset?
- Sunset is different every day. You can use these times as an approximate guide: * May 16 8:00PM * May 31 8:14PM * June 15 8:23PM * June 30 8:25PM * July 15 8:19PM * July 31 8:04PM * August 15 7:45PM * August 31 7:19PM * September 15 6:53 PM * September 30 6:27PM * October 15 6:02PM * October 31 5:38PM * November 3 4:36PM
- Can I add special things to my tour?
- Yes. You may add a message in a bottle ($50 + tax) with at least 48 hours notice upon purchasing your tickets [Boston Gondolas will be happy to provide further information concerning this option upon request].
- Do all tours go on the river?
- The Il Bacio, Mezza Luna and Bellissimo Tours do go on the river most of the time, assuming the weather permits. On rare occasions when the wind is too powerful or there is too much boat traffic, your gondolier reserves the right to remain in the canals, lagoons and ponds for safety reasons.
- How many people can a gondola carry?
- The gondola can carry up to 6 adults each (if at least one passenger is a child under 10, the gondola can carry 7 passengers total). Groups between 7 and 12 passengers should click the "Contact GondolaTours" link to make special arrangements to use both boats at the same time.
- Do people get married on the gondolas?
- Yes! We have had some very beautiful wedding ceremonies. We have special uniforms and dress for the gondolas, and our gondoliers love to help make it a special and wonderful occasion. To create a custom wedding ceremony, please click the "Contact GondolaTours" link to reach Boston Gondolas.
- What do you do for marriage proposals?
- This information is top secret!! Guys and girls, you will not find a more unique and special way to say, "Will you marry me?" If you intend to propose on the gondola, please make sure you let us know beforehand! Just click the "Contact GondolaTours" link to contact Boston Gondolas.
- Can my photographer come on board?
- Yes! We have many requests for photo shoots and engagement photos. You must notify Boston Gondolas in advance (by clicking the "Contact GondolaTours" link) if a professional photographer is part of your party.
- Are gondolas safe?
- Gondolas are very safe. Besides being especially built to avoid tipping, our gondolas are fully equipped with all US Coast Guard required equipment including life jackets. NO, you do not have to wear a life jacket unless you are 12 years of age or younger.
- Will I get seasick?
- In the past 5 years we have never seen a single guest get sick!
- Do celebrities ever ride the gondolas?
- All the time!!! How about President Bush, Mick Jagger, Elton John, Tom Brady, and the Queen of England! Just kidding!!! Gondoliers are great at keeping secrets. We will never reveal who you are or who you came with. Maintaining your privacy is important to us. Our lips are sealed!
- Are gift certificates available for the Gondola di Venezia tours?
- Yes, gift certificates are available for the Bellissimo tour, the Mezza Luna tour and the Il Bacio tour, and they make a perfect gift for holidays, birthdays or any other occasion! To purchase a gift certificate for the Bellissimo tour, please click on the "Gift certificates: Purchase" link in the box above.
- How is my gift certificate delivered? Can I print it out now and give it to the recipient myself?
- Yes, you can! When you purchase your gift certificate online, you will be presented immediately with your gift certificate so that you can print it out and deliver it. If you buy it over the phone, a link to your gift certificate will be emailed to you as soon as your purchase is completed.
- What if I want the gift certificate emailed to the recipient instead?
- That's no problem, either! When you purchase your gift certificate, just select the option to have the certificate emailed directly to the recipient and provide their email address. You'll even be able to decide whether you want the email sent immediately or if you'd prefer to schedule it to be emailed on a future date. (For instance, if you want to buy it today so you don't forget, but you don't want it emailed to the recipient until their special day!)
- Non-refundable, cannot be rescheduled.
- Once purchased, tickets cannot be refunded and cannot be rescheduled because your space is being guaranteed at the event.
- Activity may be cancelled due to severe weather.
- The activity usually runs in light rain and other moderate weather conditions, but the seller may cancel the activity up to an hour before the start time in the event of severe or unsafe weather conditions. If the seller cancels the event, ticket-holders will be allowed to reschedule tickets (subject to availability) or receive credit for a future event.
- The message in a bottle add-on requires 48 hours advance notice.
- If you are purchasing a message in the bottle, please note that you can only do so if you are ordering at least 48 hours before your tour starts in order to give us enough advance notice to prepare it.
Gondola di Venezia
Our team of gondoliers has been trained to row gondolas on the canals of Venice, Italy, and is well versed in the history and the unique and magical personality of the gondola.
Our tours have been featured in The Boston Globe and Sunday Morning America with Charles Osgood.