The best places to celebrate July Fourth on a boat

San Francisco – to celebrate with an abundance of live music

The Fourth of July is a day of patriotic fun and parties. Nearly every town in America puts on family activities, parades and firework displays, and what better way to celebrate than on a superyacht?

Here is our selection of the best places to celebrate:

1. San Francisco

On July 4 the creative hub of San Francisco will be buzzing with artists' exhibitions and cover bands on Pier 39, live music performances all day in the Aquatic Park and, of course, an extraordinary fireworks display over the bay set to a soundtrack by the San Francisco Symphony. More than 10,000 fireworks are set off from two locations in sync to create a kaleidoscope of colour across one of America's most iconic skylines.

Where to be: There are plenty of mooring options for those cruising on a luxury yacht around San Francisco Bay (87 metre Musashi and 119 metre Motor Yacht A have been spotted in Sausalito in recent years) or guests can head out on a fireworks cruise around the bay. Alternatively, book early for an outdoor table at one of Pier 39's many restaurants.

Picture courtesy of / Keneva Photography

New York — to celebrate in an iconic setting

Although many locals leave the city to celebrate the holiday in the Hamptons or in upstate New York, the city is still a great place to enjoy Independence Day. The Macy’s Firework Display will see more than 10,000 fireworks let off from barges right in front of the Brooklyn Bridge. The entire display will be synchronised to music and this year the score will be classic cinema themes with a live performance from Jennifer Hudson.

Where to be: Venturing out into the New York Harbour allows you to get a close-up view of the Statue of Liberty while taking in the fireworks. This year, ONE°15 Brooklyn Marina will have a front-row seat for the pyrotechnic display. ONE°15 can host yachts up to 60 metres and boasts one of New York City’s best marina views for the show.

Washington DC — for a patriotic celebration

What better way to celebrate independence than in the nation’s capital? Although Washington D.C. is not directly on the coast, the Potomac River comes into the heart of the city and many people enjoy the spectacle by boat. During the day, America’s National Independence Day Parade, featuring bands and patriotic floats, takes place before a fireworks display in the evening.

Where to be: The fireworks spectacular takes place on the National Mall from 9pm. The area fills up quickly, so why not enjoy them from the water instead?

PIcture courtesy of Chris Parypa Photography/

Miami — for the biggest party atmosphere

Miami is the ultimate party destination to celebrate the Fourth of July. There are events hosted all across the city and along the coast with spectacular firework displays — most of which start at 9pm. If you are looking for a way to start the celebrations during the day time then head to Key Biscayne to take in a good-old fashioned parade.

Where to be: The best place to take in the atmosphere in the evening is offshore on a boat so you can enjoy multiple fireworks displays at once as every city along the coastline puts on its own display. The nearest superyacht marinas in Miami are Sunset Harbour Marina, Miami Beach Marina or the Island Gardens Deep Harbour.

The next day, recover from the celebrations at Nobu's Esencia spa on Miami Beach.

Picture courtesy of Carsten Reisinger/

San Diego — for a family friendly atmosphere

San Diego has a great family friendly atmosphere and one of the best fireworks displays in the country. The Big Bay Boom display sees fireworks set off from four barges strategically placed around North San Diego Bay and three other displays also take place up the coastline.

Where to watch: Try and berth for the weekend at Kona Kai Resort and Marina, it is conveniently located just 10 minutes downtown and is the closest marina to the open ocean. The fireworks kick off at 9pm and the best place to watch the displays is in the open water. The Coastguard, Harbor Police and special patrol vessels are there to make sure the event is safe.

Picture courtesy of Evantravels/

Maine — for a whole week’s entertainment

Maine is a popular place to enjoy a few days of partying, racing and fun for July Fourth. On July 5 Penobscot Bay hosts the Great Schooner Race. The centre of celebrations on July 4 is Bar Harbor, where activities begin at 6am with a blueberry pancake feast and in the evening crowds gather to watch a firework display over Frenchman’s Bay.

Where to be: There has been a big influx of superyachts chartering in Maine and the surrounding coastline and the marinas are well equipped to handle the deep drafts and shoreside assistance required by yachts. Head out to water to enjoy the fireworks or join the crowds at Bar Harbor.

Picture courtesy of Joseph Sohm/

Nantucket — For all-American fun

Nantucket is the epitome of American idyllic summertime and is a great place to celebrate July Fourth on a superyacht. Get ready for street activities, beach games and the Fire Department water fight at 10am. In the evening, enjoy the Downtown celebration and an amazing fireworks display.

Where to be: Nantucket Boat Basin marina is the best place to base yourself over the weekend. To watch the fireworks, you either want to head out at a safe distance from the barge or join the party on Jetties Beach.

Newport — for two displays in one weekend

Newport is the perfect place to enjoy a festival-style Independence Day, with a bike parade and free community festival taking place at Channel Place Park. Additionally, there will be the Old Glory Boat Parade, the coastal flyover by the Condor Squadron Officers' and Airmen's Association, and fireworks on Newport Beach at 9pm.

Where to be: The best place to take in the displays is out at sea, but consider mooring for the weekend at the marina at Brown & Howard Wharf, which can accommodate yachts up to 70 metres.

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