A family beach vacation to the Gulf Coast of Florida always promises plenty of fun, laughter, and timeless memories. But what do you do when the sandy, sun-weary kids tire of frolicking on the beach? You take them on a Panama City pirate cruise, of course! Below, we’ve listed everything you need to know about the Sea Dragon Pirate Cruise, one of the Gulf Coast’s best family attractions. For more local insight, be sure to check out our complimentary 30A Travel Guide!
This Panama City Pirate Cruise Will Shiver Your Timbers!
History of the Sea Dragon
Back in the 1980s, Captain “Fearless” Phil—Sea Dragon’s proud owner—had a vision. He wanted to use his 25 years of scuba diving, lifeguarding, and C.P.R. instructor experience to create a unique family-friendly attraction in Panama City, Florida. While “Fearless” Phil pondered his next steps, his uncle was busy building a truly amazing structure: the 85-foot, 157,000-pound Sea Dragon. Through an unexpected turn of events, “Fearless” Phil purchased the impressive vessel—which is a modern-day replica of an ancient pirate ship—from his uncle. Since 1993, she has become a beloved staple in the waters surrounding Panama City!
About the Cruise
Captain “Fearless” Phil has come a long way since purchasing Sea Dragon. Since then, he has curated a unique, fun experience for all ages. A Sea Dragon Pirate Cruise offers both a relaxing tour for adults and two fun-filled hours for children. The vessel boards in the heart of Panama City and cruises out a half-mile away from the shoreline. You’ll get to sit back, relax, and watch the kids have a blast (under the friendly crew’s careful observation)!
What to Expect on Board
Almost as soon as everyone boards the ship, the crew will gather the little ones for their 2-hour itinerary of swashbucklin’ fun. They will get to enjoy funny stories told by in-character crew members, sword fights (the safe kind), face painting, pirate tattoos, squirt gun battles, and, of course, buried treasure. While the kids make timeless memories and new friends, parents enjoy some blissful sightseeing on the main deck. You’ll see numerous species of birds, fish, and—if you’re lucky—a pod of Bottlenose dolphins! Grab a margarita from the on-ship bar, put your sunglasses on, and enjoy two stress-free hours aboard the Sea Dragon.
Admission and Helpful Tips
Pirate cruises aboard the Sea Dragon operate between March and October. The schedule varies each year, so be sure to check the cruise calendar before booking! Since this is such a popular attraction, you’ll want to book your trip several days (or better yet, a week) in advance. Here are ticket prices (for each 2-hour journey):
- Adults (15 years and older): $27
- Seniors (60 years and older): $23
- Children (14 years and younger): $19
- Tots (1-2 years): $13
- Baby pirates: Free.
Be sure to come prepared with sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, and—just in case—motion sickness medication. There are light snacks, soft drinks, and alcoholic beverages available on board.
After a fun-filled Panama City pirate cruise, treat the kids to the most important aspect of your 30A vacation: A spacious and comfortable vacation rental on the beach. In a Your Friend at the Beach rental, the kids have plenty of space to roam, relax, and recharge after a fun day in the sun. In fact, your whole family will feel right at home thanks to our premium resort amenities: Complimentary Keurigs with plenty of flavored K-Cups, fully stocked kitchens, and convenient concierge services (hello grocery delivery and crib rental services!), just to name a few. Choose between our Destin, Blue Mountain Beach, and Santa Rosa Beach condos and find the home-away-from-home that’s perfect for your family! We can also help recommend even more kid-friendly attractions in the area (like sandcastle-building and visiting Panama City’s Gulf World).