• Tours Resume May 16, 2020

Rock Island Lighthouse on a Glass Bottom Boat Tour

Tours Resume May 16, 2020

Quick Details

Rock Island Lighthouse Tour In Clayton, NY

Board the Night Heron, our incredible glass-bottomed boat, and get an unparalleled view of underwater life in the clean waters of the St. Lawrence River.

Travel to Rock Island and spend one hour visiting the island where you can climb up in the lighthouse tower and look over the St. Lawrence River. Visit the lighthouse keeper’s home that is now a museum and gift shop.

Walk the island and see the building once used to store whale oil for burning in the lighthouse. Peer through the unique glass bottom boat to see native fish of the St. Lawrence, as well as countless other natural wonders beneath the waves of the Saint Lawrence River. The tour is guided by our historical and naturalist narrators with unique knowledge of the Thousand Islands.

Rock Island Lighthouse is located in the Thousand Islands about 4.5 miles northeast of Clayton, Jefferson County, New York, off of Fisher’s Landing. Originally commissioned in 1847, it is one of six lights put up along the St. Lawrence River to guide traffic to and from Lake Ontario through the waterway.

The Rock Island station is the best preserved, as all of its structures still survive. It was refitted in 1855, rebuilt in 1882, and moved in 1903. The light was closed in 1955 after more a century of service. Today, the lighthouse and island are maintained by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation.

In 2010, restoration of Rock Island and its structures began, using federal and state funds. The goal of the work is to make Rock Island a tourist destination that describes the station and its keepers and gives a glimpse into life on the St. Lawrence.

2020 Schedule

Spring Schedule – May 16 through June 12 11:00am Daily / Memorial Day Weekend May 23-25 10:15am and 1:00pm / June 13-19 10:15am and 1:00pm

Summer Schedule – June 14 through September 7  10:15am and 1:30pm

Fall Schedule – September 8 – 21 Thrusday – Monday 1:00pm and Fiday & Saturday 10:15am, 1:00pm

Highlights of the Tour Include:

  • Shipwreck of the Schooner Elk – old sailing grain carrier sunk prior to 1860
  • Clayton Waterfront
  • Calumet Island – once home to Calumet Castle built by Charles Emory
  • The Narrows
  • Eel Bay
  • Thousand Islands Biological Station – Governors Island
  • Maple Island – “The Maple Island Mystery”
  • Eagle Wing Shoal
  • Bluff Island
  • Picton Quarry – Picton Island
  • Thousand Islands Park – Wellesley Island
  • Native plants, fish and bird species
  • Rock Island and Rock Island Lighthouse
  • Isle of Pines – Once featured on “Ghost Hunters”
  • Watch Island
  • Frontenac Yacht Dock Cribbing – Round Island
  • Hiawatha Lodge – Round Island
  • Highest Point of the Frontenac Arch

Meeting Location

  • Boarding takes place 15 minutes prior to departure.
  • Meeting Address: 39611 Chateau Lane, Clayton, NY 13624
  • FREE parking, buses, and RVs welcome

Concessions – We do not have concessions on board our boat for this tour, however, we do offer picnic lunches to carry on board with you. Picnic lunches should be pre-ordered online when purchasing tickets to guarantee selection or by calling us at least one hour prior to departure. We also offer a made to order menu at our concession stand onshore. Please arrive early for your tour to allow us time to prepare your food or stop by after your tour. All items are available to go and may be taken aboard our boats, eaten on Rock Island, or onshore before/after your tour.

Rock Island Lighthouse Admission Included

No pets are allowed on Rock Island,  with the exception of registered service animals.***

NO PASSPORT REQUIRED

OUR BOATS ARE SMOKE-FREE