How many people can be on a boat? What about dogs?
Passenger allowances for our vessels are listed here and here and are strictly enforced. Nauti-Toons can not make exceptions to these restrictions.Regardless of age, each person counts as a single passenger.
We welcome you to bring your furry family members on board! However, please keep in mind that dogs are not allowed on any sections of Deer Island or Harrison County beaches. If you take your dog into these areas, you may receive a ticket, and you will be asked to keep your dog on the boat or sidewalk. Drinking salt water will make your pup sick in ways that are very unpleasant to clean up. For your dog please remember to bring items to keep her/him comfortable as well especially if boating or the climate here is unfamiliar. Offer your pal plenty of freshwater, food, shade, and time to get used to the situation. We encourage you to bring a leash, properly fitted doggie life jacket, and a favorite toy.
Is the water safe for swimming and fishing?
Dive in! Mississippi's coastal beaches are OPEN! See MDEQ for more information as beach closures can happen any time.
How long can I rent the boat?
Times listed on the Availability page include 30 minutes of orientation and loading. You can choose from a 4.5 hours (half day) or 9 hours (full day).
Can I do a sunset cruise or overnight?
All boats must be re-fueled and returned by 6pm. We do not offer sunset trips at this time. Hourly rental rates or overnight rentals are not available.
What costs am I responsible for?
The prices listed here are the base prices. Nauti-Toons must collect 7% sales tax on that amount. You are also responsible for the amount of fuel you consume. On the day of departure we also hold a $250 security/damage deposit that will be refunded to you when the boat has been returned in good shape and rules have not been violated. Military discount with ID is available on full day rentals only. If paying with cash, please have exact change for fees and taxes and the security deposit separate.
What if there's bad weather?
If you or we decide the conditions are not suitable, there are no charges for cancelling or rescheduling your boat trip. We watch the weather forecast closely and work with you if the weather may be unfavorable.
Savvy boaters assess the risks and consider their skill level and the comfort of their group. In boating there is more to the weather than rain. Wind, waves, heat, and thunderstorms can be the most dangerous phenomena affecting activities on the water. Afternoon storms with gusty wind and lightning occur frequently in June, July, and August and can rapidly present several hazards at the same time.
Do I need to make a reservation?
Yes! Nauti-Toons operates by appointment. We can accommodate walk-up rentals only if our staff happens to be on-site at the time. Please call us to arrange a date, time, and boat as soon as you are interested in renting. To hold your reservation, we will need a name, phone number, credit card, and number of passengers including all children. No-shows and cancellations with less than 24-hours notice may not have the $100 deposit refunded. We will assess the weather and sea conditions prior to the rental time and reserve the right to call off the trip if not safe.
How do we get our boat?
Please call us if you will be late so we can coordinate other rentals accordingly.Your reservation time includes 30 minutes for paperwork and orientation.When you arrive to pick up your boat, we will need to see the designated operator's driver's license. The operator must complete several forms and review the rules. We will also cover charts, maps, hazards, boundaries, swimming and fishing spots, and the return process. Then our staff will show you the ins and outs of your particular boat.
Can I pick up people elsewhere?
We must have a manifest and liability waiver for everyone who will be on your boat--no exceptions. If someone has not completed those documents, then he/she is not allowed to step foot on the boat. For that reason, we ask that your entire party be present before departure. If you will be adding passengers after departure, you will need to arrange that with us as soon as possible.
Who can rent a boat?
Only one person may be the designated operatorof the vessel. The operator must beat least 25 years oldand present avalid driver's licensein his/her state. We also require the operator to have someprior boating experience. Residents of Mississippi born after June 1980 are required by the MDWFP to complete a Boater Safety Course prior to operating a boat in the state. Proof of certification is your responsibility if you encounter any law enforcement agencies during your excursion.
Nauti-Toons staff will consider the competence of the driver during the orientation and reserves the right to deny rental to anyone who does not exhibit an appropriate level of skill to maintain the safety of all persons and the boat in the given conditions.
What kind of boats do you have, and what are the features?
Traditional pontoon with comfortable seating, radio/Bluetooth stereo, Bimini, and swim ladder
Water slide pontoon with upper deck, water slide, USB port, abundant seating, and swim ladder
What can we do?
The Mississippi Sound, Biloxi Back Bay, and Biloxi River offer plenty of water-based activities. You are welcome to explore, fish, swim, and play until you are exhausted. Deciding to pack your lunch for a picnic or dock at a restaurant will be the toughest decision you have to make all day!
What can we NOT do?
The designated operator agrees to remain without the influence of alcohol or drugs. Towing or water skiing is forbidden.
Bowriding (being outside the gates or on the upper deck of the slide boat while the boat is moving) is extremely dangerous and illegal. Jumping/diving from or riding on the upper deck of the slide boat is not allowed. Any person who has not signed the liability waiver is not allowed on board the boat.
Can we go to Ship or Horn Island?
NOPE--these are small pontoon boats not built for traveling in a true gulf environment. Deer Island is the only island within our boundaries.
What do we need to bring with us?
Don't forget the essentials especially in summer: plenty of water, a cooler (glass containers are prohibited on Deer Island and beaches), snacks, towels, sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, flip flops/water shoes, and phone. A waterproof container is really suggested for personal electronics, wallets, and purses.
What do you provide?
You will depart with a full tank of gas to get you through your day. On the boat you will have a life jacket for each passenger, required emergency gear such as life ring or throwable float, air horn, flares, and fire extinguisher. Each boat also has an anchor, local nautical chart, boat hook/pole, and dock lines that travel with you. Anyone under 13 years old is required to wear a properly fitted life jacket any time the boat is moving--no exceptions.
Where can we go?
During orientation our staff will review where you can travel. These areas include Deer Island, Katrina Reef (southeast of Deer), Fort Bayou (Ocean Springs), Biloxi Bay and Back Bay, the mouths of the Biloxi and Tchoutacabouffa Rivers, various sandbars and beaches, fishing spots, and restaurants with docks.
We ask that you remain within the boundaries that we have set. These limits are in place for safety of the boat, passengers, and those who would have to assist if you are in distress. Traveling beyond these points will result in the loss of your security deposit. NORTH of Interstate 10 either via the rivers or Fort Bayou is prohibited. Traveling WEST of Big Lake into the Industrial Seaway is prohibited. On the east side of Deer Island, EAST of the southbound channel is prohibited. On the west side of Deer Island, WEST of the southbound channel is prohibited. Traveling beyond ½ mile SOUTH of Deer Island is prohibited.
These are small pontoon boats not ocean vessels, therefore, traveling into the sound beyond Deer Island is not wise. Wind and sea conditions often quickly become uncomfortable and dangerous. Our boats are easily handled in the areas that Nauti-Toons has defined. Even with limited local knowledge, if you adhere to the rules, boundaries, and advice our staff gives, then you and your crew should have a safe and pleasant adventure.
Where can we find restaurants or bait shops?
Around the Fort Bayou/Washington Ave/Hwy 609 bridge in Ocean Springs you'll find a variety of restaurants to have lunch. You may also dock at The Blind Tiger and Gollott's in Biloxi. If you dock at the Small Craft Harbor beside the Hard Rock Casino, you'll have access to a selection of restaurants along Highway 90.
Spot soaring cranes, swooping pelicans, chatty gulls, osprey carrying fish, even migrating geese and monarch butterflies depending upon the time of year. You may spot an alligator lounging in the bayou. You'll see tiny and medium crabs. (Please don't take away the hermit crabs from their native environments!). Watch minnows dancing and mullet jumping. Along the beaches you'll find so many cool shells and bones, maybe even a horseshoe crab shell. During the summer, a variety of jellyfish are present in the water, and they also wash up onto the beach. Scan the water and sand for them. The bigger jellyfish with flowy tentacles have a very painful sting. Look out for everyone's favorite! (Please do not crowd or chase the dolphins!) Everywhere you look there will be something interesting whether it's in the water, on the land, or in the sky!
BILOXI BOAT RENTALS
Captain your own boat! Discover Deer Island, Biloxi Back Bay, and Biloxi River.