Q: Are any special skills required to captain a Parrot Cove houseboat?
A: Any responsible adult with basic boating experience can operate our houseboats. Our Keycraft Cruiser houseboats are designed and built with the renter in mind and as such are simple to operate. Before departure, a Parrot Cove representative will instruct you on the operation of the boat, safety rules, and general cruising tips. A 24-hour emergency phone number will be provided in case you need assistance. (Bring your portable cell phone. If you don’t have one, we will provide one for you.)
Q: What activities would a typical Parrot Cove houseboating vacation include?
A: Most people enjoy simply cruising the lake, taking in the sun and scenery. Find a secluded cove, drop anchor and have a swim. Kids will love the water slide! Relax. Have a cool drink; throw some steaks on the grill. Fish for small-mouth, large-mouth or striped bass. (Fishing license required. Click here for info) You may also choose to rent and tow along a run-a-bout or Waverunner. Use Parrot Cove as a base for shore excursions such as a round of golf at one of two nearby public golf courses or shopping at local craft and antique shops. Para-sailing, video arcades and restaurants are all minutes away.
Q: Where do I spend the night?
A: Smith Mountain Lake has over 500 miles of shoreline with hundreds of secluded coves perfect for overnight anchoring. Just choose one, drop anchor, switch on the anchor light and you are set for the night. Of course, you are always welcome to dock overnight at Parrot Cove.
Q: What do I need to bring?
A: All bed linens and towels are provided. The galleys are fully furnished with cookware, dinnerware, and utensils. Just bring food, clothing and toiletries. Everything else is optional. Just some suggestions: reclining lounge chairs, beach towels, sunscreen, fishing equipment, CDs, jam box (for use on the upper deck), DVD movies, cards or games, bottled drinking water, paper towels, camera.
Q: When is the best time of year to come?
A: Obviously the weeks between Memorial Day and Labor Day are the most popular. It is best to book your reservation well in advance if you want a houseboat during this period. Spring and Fall rentals are increasing in popularity and offer some advantages many prefer. The weather is milder, the lake less crowded, the availability of boats greater, and the rates are discounted. We are open for business from April 1 through October 31.
Q: How much would I expect to spend on gasoline?
A: For a 3-day weekend rental, the average fuel expense would be approximately $150. This will obviously vary depending on the amount of cruising you do as well as the amount of time you run the generator.
Q: Can I bring my own runabout or PWC to tow behind a houseboat?
A: Yes. We can accommodate parking for a limited number of trailers.
Q: What about insurance?
A: All houseboat contracts automatically include $1,000,000 of liability coverage to protect the renter from legal claims for third-party property damage or bodily injury.
Also included is houseboat damage insurance for the full value of the boat less a 5% deductible. To help limit the potential liability to the renter, we recommend purchasing the Damage Loss Waiver.
Cost of Waiver
For this fee, except in the case of gross negligence, intoxication, an intentional flagrant act, or any act that would negate insurance coverage, Parrot Cove will waive any costs that exceed the $500 damage deposit.
If you choose not to purchase this Damage Loss Waiver, you will be held responsible for the cost of the deductible plus any other costs not covered by insurance.
Q: Are pets allowed?
Q: How do I get to Parrot Cove?
A: Click here for directions