It’s with a heavy heart that we’re saying goodbye to the Henrietta III. On January 20, 2016, The Henrietta III was sold and will be departing downtown Wilmington, NC.

Captain Carl Marshburn originally brought the Henrietta to Wilmington, NC in 1988 and has added to our fleet through the years. This includes the Captain J.N. Maffitt and John Knox, two smaller boats, which will remain operating from the same Water Street dock.

“My goal has always been to create a quality attraction for Wilmington and that our citizens would adopt the Henrietta as “their boat. And I’m proud to say that we did.

Cape Fear Riverboats has always been a family-run business and being part of the community has always been vitally important to them. The Henrietta III may be heading for different waters, but we they are not. Cape Fear Riverboats will continue to run their other vessels: the Captain J.N. Maffitt and John Knox as well as our newest addition “Jacob’s Run” for sightseeing cruises, sunset cruises and private charters.

Weather permitting, Cape Fear Riverboats will be resuming sightseeing cruises on the Captain J.N. Maffitt and John Knox in April.

Locals and visitors that have purchased valid gift certificates for the Henrietta III are being contacted by Cape Fear Riverboats.


Featured Offerings

Cape Fear Riverboat invites you to enjoy our following offerings

  • Narrated Sightseeing Cruises

    Narrated Sightseeing Cruises

    We offer one hour Narrated Sightseeing Cruises aboard the Captain Maffitt and John Knox. Our Captain will teach you all about the Cape Fear River and downtown Wilmington while you sit back and just enjoy the ride.

  • Black River Nature Cruises

    Black River Nature Cruises

    Take a 4-Hour Relaxing Getaway up to the Black River! This tour is narrated by Andy Woods a Coastal Ecologist and Author. This is a photographers dream! Limited dates available, please call to pre-purchase your tickets.

  • Captain Maffitt/Knox Private Charters

    Captain Maffitt/Knox Private Charters

    Celebrate a Special Event aboard the Captain Mafffitt or John Knox, both 50 foot boats are available for private charters

  • Capt. Maffitt/John Knox Cruises

    Capt. Maffitt/John Knox Cruises

    The Capt. J.N. Maffitt and John Knox offers daily sightseeing tours April thru October as well as a 4 Hour Black River Nature Cruises. Charter either boat for a special event.

  • School & Summer Camps

    School & Summer Camps

    Riverboats ignited the creativity of one of America’s greatest writers, Mark Twain, & could spark interest in your group of students! Expose them to both history and adventure with a field trip aboard the Capt. Maffitt for school and summer camps to 45 passengers. Two of our boats can be used for a total capacity of 90.

  • Special Events Cruises

    Special Events Cruises

    We offer special event cruises throughout the year. Valentine’s Day, Fourth of July, Santa cruises, and New Year’s Eve cruises are all extremely popular and sell out every year.

Do you know someone that would enjoy a cruise?

We offer gift certificates that can be used for a Black River Nature Cruise or a Sightseeing Cruise.

Our gift certificates make perfect gifts for anyone coming into town on vacation or anyone that would just enjoy a relaxing cruise on the Cape Fear River.   Whether its a 1 hour sightseeing adventure or a 4 hour Black River Nature Cruise, give a gift they won’t soon forget!


Call to purchase your gift certificates  (910-343-1611)


The absolute best way to see Wilmingtons Waterfront!
Lou Neofotistos
- Owner of

Make your time in Wilmington more memorable...

Join us for a water tour or cruise on the Cape Fear River today!