FAQs

What is a Drop Off Tour?

All of our drop off tours leave Bruce Anchor’s departure dock at exactly the time they are scheduled. From there, passengers are taken into Big Tub Harbour to view two of Fathom Five National Marine Park’s historic shipwrecks. These wrecks are easily viewed over the sides of our vessels or through our large glass panel floors – that you can stand on!!
After the shipwreck viewing our tour will take you to Flowerpot Island. You will see the famous Flowerpots from the water as you approach Beachy Cove, our docking location. Depending on which vessel you select for your tour you will arrive on Flowerpot Island between 20 and 50 minutes from the time you depart Bruce Anchor’s dock.
Once the vessel has safely docked at Flowerpot passengers will exit the boat and begin their adventure on Flowerpot Island. Hiking on the island is self-guided so make sure you note the time it takes you to get from place to place!

Your preset return sailing time will leave promptly at the time it was scheduled to depart Flowerpot Island. It will be the only seat that you are guaranteed on to get home.

What is a Stay Aboard Tour?

A stay aboard tour is an excellent way to see the sights of Fathom Five National Marine Park from the water.
All of our tours leave Bruce Anchor’s departure dock at exactly the time they are scheduled. From there, cruise passengers are taken into Big Tub Harbour to view two of Fathom Five National Marine Park’s historic shipwrecks. These wrecks are easily viewed over the sides of our vessels or through our large glass panel floors – that you can stand on!!
After the shipwreck viewing our tour will take you around  Flowerpot Island to view the historic light station and famous Flowerpots.
This tour option is great for those who prefer not to hike on Flowerpot Island, or for those who prefer to stay dry on a rainy day.

What is a Direct Shuttle?


For those who are looking go to Flowerpot Island as fast as possible, a direct shuttle is the way to go!  Usually the direct shuttle is offered on weekends during the peak season.  The direct shuttle sailings will leave Bruce Anchor’s departure dock at exactly the time they are scheduled.  Once you depart Bruce Anchor’s dock you will head directly to Flowerpot Island.  These sailings do not include shipwreck viewings or famous Flowerpot viewings from the water.
Upon your scheduled return time, the direct shuttle will take you directly back to Bruce Anchor’s dock.

What is the National Park Pass?

Every person stopping on Flowerpot Island is subject to National Park entry fees. These fees are remitted to Fathom Five National Marine Park and help to cover the upkeep costs of the island. Lately, they have been used to build a rain/sun shelter on the dock where you will load/unload, to improve the trail system all the way to the light station, and to build new washroom facilities.

Flowerpot Island is part of the Fathom Five National Marine Park. Every person visiting Flowerpot Island must have a valid Parks Canada entry pass. Visit http://www.pc.gc.ca/ for information, terms of use, and to order your Discovery Pass. You can also purchase your entry pass at out ticket outlets.

How long is the cruise?

If you are booking a stay aboard cruise, the sailing duration will be approximately 70 minutes.

If you are booking a drop off tour, the length of your adventure is variable.  When booking your drop off tour or direct shuttle you will have to select a departure time from Tobermory and a preset return time from Flowerpot Island will be provided.  The length of your cruise will be based on those two bookings.

Can we take our dog with us?

Bruce Anchor Cruises accepts pets!  We ask that the dog is friendly, good with people, good with other dogs, not anxious on boats, and non-muzzled. We want all our guests to feel comfortable and safe, and as such our captains have the right to refuse any dog if he thinks this will be compromised. We might also ask you to sit in an open portion of the boat so that anyone with allergies won't have any issues.

We are camping on the island. How do we get there?

Campsites on Flowerpot Island are booked through Parks Canada.  Please visit here to book your site.

Once your site is booked, please email to reserve your transportation to Flowerpot Island.

Parks Canada allows campers to check-in to their sites after 2:00pm.  Therefore, during peak season, campers will be required to select a cruise departure time, from Tobermory, after 4:00pm.  Upon their return to Tobermory, they will be required to select a departure, from Flowerpot Island, before 12:00pm.
Campers will be charged discounted rates to be transported to Flowerpot Island.  They will not receive a shipwreck tour.

For Fathom Five National Marine Park (Flowerpot Island) COVID-19 updates, please visit here.

When can we see shipwrecks?

All drop off and stay aboard sailings will see shipwrecks unless stated otherwise.

For more information, please use our live chat option or call our ticket office at 1-800-591-4254.

Where do we park?

All Bruce Anchor Cruises guests will receive free parking during their cruise. We have a long term parking area close by, at 22 Legion Street, a 10 minute walk from our boarding dock.  Parking permits are required.  In addition, shuttle buses operate daily to provide assistance to guests with mobility issues to the Bruce Anchor dock for boarding.

How long should we stay on the island?

We have changed our reservation system to include return times in order to monitor the number people on Flowerpot Island as per government COVID-19 contact regulations.  This involves having set return times to limit contact sharing on the vessels.  Your time on the island will be slightly different with each sailing, but generally around 3 hours is provided with each tour.  This will allow time on the island, to swim, hike, picnic, camp, and explore.  There are 4 km of hiking trails leading from Beachy Cove to the Flowerpots, a Cave, the Lightstation, a Museum, and Castle Bluff.  Please check https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/amnc-nmca/on/fathomfive/activ/flowerpot for details and construction notices, as some attractions may not be available.

Can we take our stroller on the boats?

It is especially relevant that passengers who bring strollers be reminded that they must be compact (umbrella stroller) or the stroller will have to remain at the ticket booth.

If a stroller must be taken on board, the stroller must fit between the feet/knees of the accompanying adult.

As an alternative, it will probably more comfortable to wear a baby carrier/backpack as this would be more conducive to the terrain on Flowerpot Island.

What are your glass bottoms like?

All of Bruce Anchor Cruises vessels boast beautiful glass bottoms. The glass bottoms of our vessels are viewing windows built into the hull of our boats.  Only a percentage (20%) of our floors are glass.  Due to the nature of the waters that we sail in, our vessels are built to a Near-Coastal Class II Specification.  Therefore, extensive reinforcement must be provided throughout the vessel to accommodate the glass panels.  Because of this, our glass bottom panels are as large as allowed by Transport Canada.

Are your docks and boats wheelchair accessible?

Bruce Anchor Cruises docking facilities are not wheelchair accessible.  Please be aware that there are essentially three flights of stairs between our parking area and docking facilities.

Can we buy food on the island?

There are no restaurants or other retail outlets on the island.

For Fathom Five National Marine Park (Flowerpot Island) COVID-19 updates, please visit here.

Are there washrooms on the island?

Composting toilets are available for visitors to use on the island.

For Fathom Five National Marine Park (Flowerpot Island) COVID-19 updates, please visit here.

What is the cancellation policy?

Boat tickets must be paid in full at the time of reservation by Visa or Mastercard. Visa Debit and Mastercard Debit will decline and are not accepted forms of payment. Cancellations must be made 24 hours prior to departure time in order to receive a refund. Any cancellations made within twenty four hours of the purchased sailing will not receive a refund. All cancellations must be made over the phone. Tickets are non-transferable within the 24 hour cancellation period. Additionally, we reserve the right to change any of the booked sailing times at our discretion.