10 Best Places to Watch Fireworks

10 Best Places to Watch Fireworks by Boat Around the US

Written by Boatsetter Team
June 3, 2024

Last Updated on June 3, 2024 by Boatsetter Team

On the Fourth of July, people all around the United States will be in celebration. With a maritime history reaching as far back as the discovery of the New World, it was no surprise at all to find out that  next to backyard barbecues, celebrating the Fourth on the water (or near it) is very popular. With thousands of boats with unique features like slides, BBQ grills, and spacious flybridges, find a boat rental in any of the trending Fourth of July destinations for a truly memorable holiday.

Trending Fourth of July destinations to celebrate by boat  

  1. Boston, Massachusetts
  2. New York City, New York
  3. Chicago, IL
  4. Houston, TX
  5. Lake Tahoe, CA
  6. Panama City Beach, FL
  7. San Diego, CA
  8. Miami, FL
  9. Lake Michigan
  10. Seattle, WA

Find unique boat rentals for Fourth of July weekend near you 

1. Boston, Massachusetts

Between early Puritan’s arrival and settlement and the Boston Tea Party, it seems fitting that Boston hosts one the largest Fourth of July festivals in the country. And, with many of those significant historical events happening by water, on water, or near it, why not hop on a center console for Harborfest, a weeklong event celebrating Boston’s proud maritime and revolutionary past time.

Find available boat rentals in Boston for the Fourth of July

2. New York City, New York

new york 4th of july on the water

Macy’s 38th 4th of July Fireworks is one of the largest shows in America, flooding the city with 2 million people including world famous celebrities, influencers, and pro athletes. Fourth of July on ground can be a lot of fun, but for encumbered views hop on a boat and get on the Hudson River.

Find available boat rentals in New York City for the Fourth of July

3. Chicago, Illinois 

From spectacular fireworks at Navy Pier that light up the city’s lakefront to a concert of beloved classics in Millennium Park, from a baseball game to a bbq rib fest, there is no better place to celebrate the country’s independence than Chicago.

Find available boat rentals in Chicago for the Fourth of July

4. Houston, Texas

houston 4th of july on the water

Houston’s Freedom over Texas firework display is the largest display in the country. The festival is an all-day event with an event filled with six-hours of festivities, tradition, and live concert stages, along Allen Parkway. Cruise over to the Buffalo Bayou for top views of fireworks.

Find available boat rentals in Houston for the Fourth of July 

5. Lake Tahoe

Looking for a lake to celebrate Fourth of July? Lake Tahoe South Lights’  fireworks display is ranked by many as one of the top displays in the country. The fireworks are shot from a barge in the middle of the lake and are visible from all over town. As you might have guessed one of the sweetest spots to view the show is on the water, directly under the fireworks.

Pro tip: The fireworks are set to music, so make sure to dial to KRLT radio station by 9:45 pm.

Find available boat rentals in Lake Tahoe for the Fourth of July

6. Panama City Beach, Florida

The Spring Break Capital of the World” made it onto the list of the best Fourth of July destinations to explore by boat, and we’re not surprised. Pana cit Beach hosts the largest Fourth of July fireworks show on the Gulf Coast. Dock at a waterfront restaurants to enjoy the show or achored near the shore. PCB typically keeps Fourth of July celebrations running for a couple of days. Toggle to Multi-Day when choosing rental dates to secure a boat for a couple of days.

Find available boat rentals in Panama City Beach for the Fourth of July

7. San Diego, California

While there are many locations throughout San Diego that host their own Fourth of July fireworks show, the main one take place across San Diego’s spangling bay. People enjoy an bursting read, white, and blue lights against the backdrop of the glittering city. San Diego’s Fourth of July firework show lasts approximately full 17 minutes.

Find available boat rentals in San Diego for the Fourth of July

8. Miami, Florida

Miami 4th of july on the water

All through out South Florida crowds of people head toward the golden beaches around five or six o’ clock to find the perfect spot to watch the fireworks. It should come as no surprise that South Beach will be packed. Hop on a cruiser and head over to Key Biscayne where you will enjoy Miami’s iconic city skyline and views of fireworks.

Find available boat rentals in Miami for the Fourth of July

9. Lake Michigan

Lake Michigan, a member of the Great Lakes and the largest freshwater lake in then US, will be lit up with Fourth of July firework shows around it’s shore. Whether you’re in Milwaukee or Chicago, find a unique boat to celebrate America’s birthday on one if it’s most precious resources.

Find available boat rentals near Lake Michigan for the Fourth of July

10. Seattle, Washington

Seattle 4th of july on the water

Go to Angle Lake Park in SeaTac this Fourth of July for the Parade of Decorated Boats. This event is great for families with small kids or a group looking for a more intimate Fourth of July. But if you’re looking for a big Fourth of July throw down, go to Gasworks Park on Lake Union — the cant-miss in Seattle for the fireworks show.

Find available boat rentals in Seattle for the Fourth of July

10 quick boating tips for a safe Fourth of July

  1. Fireworks are often done over lakes, rivers, and bays. Anchor a safe distance away from the fireworks.
  2. While many boats are pet-friendly, keeping pet(s) home for this event is recommended.
  3. Don’t bring fireworks, sparklers, or other open flames on the boat.
  4. Don’t use distress flares as fireworks.
  5. Plan how to head back to the dock or ramp (especially if it’s in the dark).
  6. Keep in mind there may be some waterway traffic after the show.
  7. Book a boat with a USCG-certified captain if you plan on drinking.
  8. Create a float plan and share booking details with friends or family.
  9. Keep in mind most firework shows end after dark.
  10. During your boat trip Boatsetter provides free, on-the-water support. For breakdowns and other, contact TowBoatUS by phone at 1-800-391-4869 or VHF Channel 16: Hail “TowBoatUS” using the Boatsetter Membership ID 49000251. 

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