Boarding a steamboat is entering another era. The captain barks orders through an old-time hand-held megaphone. The calliope trills into the air while the great wheel, 25 tons of white oak, churns the heavy Mississippi waters. You slip into a sense of the old, vast, timeless river. As it glides past the French Quarter, you understand the magic of the experience. For all its history and romance, the excitement of riding a steamboat is as real, rich and genuine as it was a century ago.