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African Queen Canal Cruise, Key Largo

Categories: Tourist Spots, Ships
Inspirock Rating:
4.1/5 based on 340+ reviews on the web
The African Queen is the boat used in the 1951 movie The African Queen starring Humprey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn. It is located in Key Largo, Florida. On February 18, 1992, it was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.HistoryThe boat was built of riveted sheet iron in 1912 in the United Kingdom for service in Africa on the Victoria Nile and Lake Albert where the movie was filmed in 1950. Originally named the Livingstone, she was built for the British East Africa Railway and used from 1912 to 1968. It spent most of its first 50 years operating in the waters of the Ruki River in the northern Democratic Republic of Congo where she was used to transport a mixture of hunters, mercenaries and cargo.According to an article on its 2012 restoration, it was built by Lytham Shipbuilding and engineering Co, as evidenced by the boiler plate and Lancashire records.The boat was found in Cairo, Egypt in the 1970s, with coal still in its bilges. Purchased and shipped to USA it had a succession of owners and is currently held in trust. It was refurbished in 2012, including installation of an interior steel hull frame and new boiler, and restored to service as a tourist boat.
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  • Trip was very relaxing - only ourselves and another two people aboard - just a slow cruise down the canals and out to sea about half mile - able to try our steering the boat - skipper was very good wi...  read more »
  • We took a boat ride on the actual African Queen! We were given background on the saving of the boat before sailing down the canal and out to the ocean. My husband and I both had the opportunity to ste...  read more »
  • We were the only family on boat. The Captain is very nice and shows pictures and tell story from the movie. Excellent tour. A must Go Bucket List 
  • Captain Mike gave us a great history of the African Queen. Although the steam engine was out for repair, we had a wonderful time. It was a personalized, fun tour. Bogart and Hepburn fans would particularly enjoy it!
  • Excellent experience; the only other glass-bottom boat I'd been on in Key West barely had any glass on its bottom! The crew were friendly, relaxed, and knowledgeable and of course Molasses Reef put on a splendid show!
  • Being a devoted Katherine Hepburn fan, I was thrilled when my husband surprised me in February by buying tickets for the African Queen for our trip to Florida in March. Years earlier, I'd read about the boat being found and restored, and it had been my hope to one day go see her. Imagine our surprise and delight to show up and find out we were the only passengers scheduled, and therefore we had a private cruise? :) Captain George was gracious and knowledgeable,the weather was perfect, and the African Queen is a celebrity, attracting attention by everyone she sails past. Be prepared to have your picture taken! And also be prepared to learn a lot about the history of the boat, a lot of behind-the scenes information about the making of the movie, and especially be prepared to fall more in love with the African Queen than ever before. Thank you Captain George, and thank you to the preservationists who cared enough to save this beautiful boat.
  • Wow!!! What a great experience. This was always my favorite movie, never did I expect to someday ride aboard it. The steam engine that was 112 years old and still operating was a site to see.The captain was very knowledgeable about this complicated piece of machinery. His appearance and personality was fun and professional.
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