Each year the Sausalito Floating Homes Association puts on a tour of 12-15 architectural masterpieces in the floating homes community. This is the only way to get to see the inside of the boats instead of merely looking at them from the dock or across the water. The homes in the area range from repurposed World War II era working boats to custom-built concept designs, with every variation imaginable in between.
There will be no tour for 2018. The Floating Homes Association has announced that the tour will return in 2019.
The tour is sponsored by the Floating Homes Association, a non-profit volunteer organization that promotes the “dock life” and closely watches out for the interests of its owners and residents. Your ticket purchase partially benefits the Friends of the Marin City Library, Sausalito Village, and other local non-profits.
Insider Tip: Many of the homes on the tour change each year, so if you’ve gone before you’ll still see new floating homes each year.
See the videos on our Sausalito Houseboats page for an example of what you’ll see on the tour.
The 2018-19 Sausalito Houseboats Tour
Date: September, 2019. Specific date to be announced in February, 2019. There will be no tour in 2018.
Time: 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM.
Information from the 2017 tour for reference:
This year’s Sausalito Floating Homes Tour theme is “Homefront on the Waterfront” and commemorates the 75th Anniversary of Marinship. Along with getting this rare opportunity to look inside 15 of these unique floating homes (including ones built from WWII surplus), you’ll be treated to music, swing dancers and cars from the 40’s era, as well as, exhibits from local artists and authors. Everyone attending is encouraged to wear their favorite 1940’s attire. Food and drink will be available for purchase.
Parking is provided in the Westamerica Plaza, where you will be greeted by volunteers who can help you park and register for the tour. A free shuttle bus will take you to the event and bring you back at the end. With the exception of a few handicapped spaces, parking is not available in the Floating Homes Community.
Insiders Tip: This event usually sells out. To avoid disappointment, we advise buying your tickets in advance. Tickets are $50 for early bird, or $55 on the day.
Can’t make it here in September? You can see photographs of the homes in the Floating Home Association’s virtual tour on this page.
Homes will open at 11:00am and close at 4:00pm. Colorful flags will indicate exactly which homes are included in the tour.
Your wristband, which you’ll receive when you check in, is your ticket; so keep it somewhere safe.
No smoking is allowed on any of the docks.
Please do not bring food or drinks into the houseboats.
No pets/animals are allowed on the tour. This includes any sized dogs.
Use caution when walking along the docks and especially when moving on and off each home.
A few homeowners ask visitors to put on shoe coverings or to remove one’s shoes before entering their floating home, so we recommend wearing comfortable, slip-on shoes.
We do not encourage the inclusion of children on the tour, but if you bring children along, remember that they are your responsibility. Keep a close eye on them at all times.
Locations of all port-a-potties are shown on the map in the self-guided tour booklet, which you will receive when you arrive. Please don’t ask docents or homeowners to use their facilities.
If you have any questions, concerns, or need any type of assistance, simply ask any of the 200 volunteers on the tour.
Do you have a large group who would like a houseboat tour, or think this would be an interesting corporate event? The Floating Homes Association offers private tours for groups of 20-40 people. The 90-minute tour will take you and your group to four homes, where you will get a unique opportunity to hear the history of the houseboat from the actual owners, and learn about their extraordinary lifestyle. To learn more click HERE.