Boat Tours

Photograph by Erin Cuddigan

While WaterFire Providence does not provide or arrange for boat tours for the general public there are still several ways to enjoy the fires from the river. Two of the best ways to both get on the river during WaterFire events are to become a member of the WaterFire Brazier Society or to join our volunteer corps.

Our rivers are closed to boat traffic during WaterFire lightings with the exception of two PUC licensed boat tour companies. La Gondola’s fleet of authentic Venetian Gondolas is available for tours both during WaterFire events and other dates throughout the Summer and Fall. Providence River Boat Company offers guided historical tours of Providence’s waterways throughout the Summer and Fall and also offers rides during WaterFire events. Learn more below.

Guest boat captains position their vessels to observe the WaterFire lighting ceremony. Steven is the on the middle boat. Photo by Irene Zawadowicz.

Brazier Society Guest Boats

One of the best ways to experience WaterFire and the city is a ride in one of our Brazier Society Guest Boats. Brazier Society members receive a fixed amount of guest boat passes for each full lighting in the WaterFire season. Learn more about Brazier Society membership benefits.


La Gondola

La Gondola offers authentic Venetian gondola trips through WaterFire that are rowed by skilled oarsmen practiced in this ancient art. Use the link above to reach their website or call them at (401) 421-8877.

Providence River Boat Company

Whether you’re a RI native, traveling with your family, or visiting for work, Providence River Boat Company tours are designed to appeal to everyone. Board one of their open-air 18 passenger vessels & enjoy the city views & expert narration of your tour guide! Book now through their website or call them at (401) 580-BOAT.


Providence Kayak

Located just steps from the RI Convention Center, the Providence Place Mall, and many downtown hotels, the Providence Kayak Co. is proud to offer a fun & exciting way to explore historic downtown Providence!

Discover urban Providence at your own pace as you paddle throughout the picturesque bridges, cobblestone walkways and green riverbanks of the Providence and Woonasquatucket Rivers, Riverwalk and Waterplace Park. 

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