It may have been a 40th birthday splurge, but a pontoon boat rental on Bartlett Lake was super fun for the whole family!
Bartlett Lake is about 50 minutes from Scottsdale, and one of our favorite lakes (read more here), with easy access and beautiful views. The only rental option is with the Bartlett Lake Marina, and you can reach them online.
Our party consisted of 5 adults, and 5 children, and the 12 passenger pontoon (full shade cover) was absolutely perfect, with lots of space to lounge. We also paid for the tube rental, and highly recommend this! Having never tubed before, it was an absolute blast and made our morning so fun!
If you keep right coming out of the marina, you’ll come to the picturesque lake dam. From this bottom point, there is about 3 miles of water and cliffs to explore! We made many spots to swim and to trade off riders on the tube. The northern part of the lake where the river enters was dirtier, so we didn’t linger long. Overall, a fabulous way to celebrate a birthday!
Here are some tips for renting a pontoon boat on Bartlett Lake:
- arrive 20 min before your scheduled time; we arrived around 10 minutes before and while check-in was smooth, it took time to park, walk our stuff down to the marina, get life jackets, hear safety tips, and load the boat. So we were 10-15 min into our rental time before finally jetting off.
- on the lifejackets: ages 13 and under are required to wear them at all times while boating. We brought our own life jacket for our toddler and made use of the free ones at the marina for the other children. Make sure to get a tight, but comfortable fit. This will make swimming much more enjoyable!
- bring a cooler for drinks and another for food; it was easy for the kids to grab what they wanted without disturbing the food. We brought lots of water, juice, LaCroix, soda, and adult drinks (cans only). Food-wise, we had snacks, and lunch (sandwiches, chips, watermelon, cookies). We had cold water ready back at the car for the drive home as well.
- sunscreen up for sure, and often, and bring sunglasses. We brought hats too but with the breeze and frequent jumping into the water, we didn’t wear them much. Towels weren’t used as much either. The extras we enjoyed were a Bluetooth speaker and pool noodles brought from home.
- pricing was about $450/half-day (9 am-1 pm), including taxes and the tube rental. You have about a 10-12 minute grace window when returning the boat, before being charged extra. Learn more here.