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TAMPA, Fla. — Untying ropes from boats tied to docks in the heart of downtown Tampa, General Manager Emily Meister prepares to depart in a vessel that turns heads wherever it goes.

Taking to the waters of Tampa Bay, Meister rides in style with Riverwalk Boating Company, a job she’s just over a year old.


What do you want to know

  • Riverwalk Boating in Tampa features classic 1950s ships
  • They have been fully restored to their former glory
  • Boaters can choose the route they prefer around Tampa Bay
  • Views vary from the natural beauty around Davis Island to the downtown scene

“Okay, we just push that button and get ready to go, and we’re stalled right now, but we just have to push that forward and we’re going!”

However, spending time on the water has been in her blood since she was a child.

Growing up in North Carolina, she lived near several lakes, where she enjoyed water sports throughout her youth. Later in her teenage and college years, she worked summer jobs on several of these lakes.

“I worked on a few inland lakes in North Carolina and did some exercises in Beaufort for a few years near their saltwater lakes,” she said.

Meister eventually made it to Florida, where she now manages Riverwalk Boating Company boats.

The boats are unique, originally designed and manufactured in the 1950s and now fully restored to their former glory. It’s like cruising in a classic car built for the water, and boaters get to experience all the bay has to offer.

They can take a more scenic natural route around Davis Island or head downtown to see the skyscrapers and luxury homes. Whichever route you choose, you’ll be in for a treat.

The Riverwalk Boating Company is located in downtown Tampa on the waterfront right next to the convention center. It is open daily from 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time until sunset. For more information, visit the company’s website.

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