Our company believes in giving back, not only to the community but also internationally. When you step on The Buccaneer Pirate Ship, we snap a photo of you and your family, but what you may not know is that the proceeds from our picture sales help support a number of charities. This is also true with our sister ship, The Southern Star, as well. Ultimately, it is our hope to supply the needs of our community and to teach the Gospel of Christ to the Nations. We encourage you to explore the organizations that we proudly support and partner with below. Our priority is create an exciting, family-fun adventure that is like no other as we encourage our passengers to “Unlock the Treasures of Your Heart and Let Your Dreams Come True.” Furthermore, The Buccaneer is a boat to serve the Nations as it helps supply the needs of our community as well as teach the Gospel of Christ. We partner with local organizations such as Food for Thought – a local food pantry – to sew into our community. Working with international mission organizations such as A.I.M.S. and One Hope, we are able to send the message to literally hundreds of thousands of men, women, and children, making a significant impact upon the Kingdom.

In 1994, our owners – Captain Steve & Wendy Wilson – walked into what was at the time, AmSouth Bank. They had a plan and an idea to develop a new cruise market in Destin, Florida: a dolphin eco-tour. This was a novel and new initiative which was approved by AmSouth’s lenders and would birth the first dolphin eco-tour in the Destin area. The Wilson’s proposal, generously granted by AmSouth was responsible for sparking an entirely new tour boat industry represented now on every dock.
Captain Steve and Wendy searched for a fresh and innovative form of family fun boating adventure that would not interfere with our original dolphin cruise. They experienced tour boat rides from Kona, Hawaii to Cancun, Mexico, and of all the excursions, the most noteworthy was found in Clearwater, Florida: “Captain Memo’s Pirate Adventure.” Why not? Everyone loves pirates, and many are enthralled by their exciting and adventurous lifestyle. Walt Disney popularized the idea years ago  with the introduction  of Captain Hook into the mainstream of children’s entertainment, and the legendary “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies, inspired by their theme park attraction, have evoked senses of fun and adventure for adults and children alike. Pirate ships never go out of style and rouse wonderment and fascination.
Clearwater provides a perfect test market, as all types of boat tours are exemplified including snorkeling and shelling, celebrity home tours, dolphin cruises, tours, speed and thrill boat rides, dinner cruises, sailing excursions, and the most popular of all – the pirate ship themed cruise.
The simple presence of the vessel itself attracts vacationers, particularly children, like a magnet. The tour interactively entertains passengers with sword fights, water gun battles, storytelling, dancing, and treasure hunts. Parental involvement is voluntary. They are given the option to join in the excitement – and no parent would want to pass on this opportunity – or simply sit back, relax and watch their children  have the time of their lives.
The pirate cruise concept appeared to be growing as it was observed in our initial phases of the project. Tarpon Springs’ boatyard has delivered two such vessels in the past few years. Another opened in Orange Beach, Alabama and Alan Laird suggested building one for Destin.
Our success with the Southern Star Dolphin Cruise is based on the concept of offering a high value form of family fun at a low cast. We offer the highest measure of service possible on the most desirable and comfortable vessel. We have developed and strengthened relationships with nearly all property managers on the coast. Many exclusively recommend and endorse the Southern Star’s service to their patrons. Additionally, this continues to be the same with the Buccaneer Pirate Cruise.
However, the journey wasn’t easy for our owners but their faith made the impossible possible. Despite discussing building a pirate ship, Wendy, not being convinced that this was both of God and a good business venture, questioned God for a sign. Thus, for twenty-one days, Captain Steve and Wendy fasted and prayed, pressing into God for an answer.

During this time, Captain Steve and Wendy traveled to Bayou La Batre, Alabama in search of a boatyard that could build a pirate ship within budget.  Bayou La Batre is a beautiful setting with towering, moss- laden oak trees and winding roads that follow the meandering bayou. While there, our owners visited three different boatyards. The last yard belonged to Joey Rodriguez, and before leaving the meeting, he mentioned that there were two pirate ships being built – one, located over by a bridge, was being built of wood.

After meeting with Joey Rodriguez, Captain Steve and Wendy piled into the car to head home. Crossing the bridge that Joey Rodriquez mentioned, Wendy spotted the ship.  Captain Steve swung the car around, and headed through the dirt driveway into an old boat yard.  They parked, and as they stepped out of the car, Captain Steve saw, lying on its back in the dirt, an old wheelhouse that had been removed from a boat.  He could not believe his eyes as he discovered that this was his wheelhouse from the first Southern Star.

Dumbfounded, he examined the old wheelhouse complete with the eagle and praise banner.  Wendy had gone looking for the rest of the boat. “Stephen,” Wendy yelled from behind the building, “come here!”  Captain Steve still couldn’t believe that his old wheelhouse was lying there in the dirt.  As he walked around the building, he felt his heart leap. Before their eyes, clear as day, was their first boat, the original Southern Star.  Carpenters were breathing new life into her.. She was being transformed from the dolphin cruise boat of yesterday into a pirate ship for tomorrow.  Wendy was in tears, and Captain Steve was having difficulty believing in the reality of what he was seeing.  The Southern Star—the original Southern Star—that was a gift from the Father fifteen years ago, and the same Southern Star that sparked a new industry in Destin, had lain in abandoned waste, dying for these last years.  Now, she was miraculously being transformed into a pirate ship.

Captain Steve didn’t know if he was more excited that God had given them their sign, or to see the carpenters breathing a new life into her.  This was the sign that they had prayed for – a confirmation of being of one accord with peace in their hearts.

Today, the Buccaneer Pirate Cruise is Destin’s Premier Pirate Ship, seeing well over 50,000 people each year, but more importantly, giving back to the Nations and encouraging every little buccaneer to unlock the treasures of their hearts and let their dreams come true.

If ye dare step aboard the Buccaneer Pirate Ship and cruise the Emerald Coast waters in search of undiscovered treasure, our friendly pirate crew will greet you as you enter the atmosphere of adventure and fun for the whole family.

This be ye chance to learn more about our merry band of buccaneers. Meet the pirates and read about the history of our crew and the background of each character that you will meet on our interactive cruise. Call us today at 850-269-0896 to book your trip on one of Destin, Florida’s newest attractions and meet the pirates of the Buccaneer.

If ye dare step aboard the Buccaneer Pirate Ship and cruise the Emerald Coast waters in search of undiscovered treasure, our friendly pirate crew will greet you as you enter the atmosphere of adventure and fun for the whole family.
This be ye chance to learn more about our merry band of buccaneers. Meet the pirates and read about the history of our crew and the background of each character that you will meet on our interactive cruise. Call us today at 850-269-0896 to book your trip on one of Destin, Florida’s newest attractions and meet the pirates of the Buccaneer.


Commodore Courageous17 (3)

Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland
Skills: Seamanship, Authority of Command
Weapon of Choice: Cutlass

Commodore: Southern Star and the Buccaneer

The Fleet’s Sail Master and a master of tactics. Strong in knowledge and wit, he is not one to challenge with a sword.  He is after all, Courageous as so named by his peers.

Born to a British father and an Irish mother, Steven Wilson was constantly looking for adventure. He often found it in the wrong places. He joined the crew of a merchant ship as a cabin boy at the age of eight years old. At 18 he was captain of his own ship, the Southern Star.

While in Port Royal, Jamaica, Wilson’s crew heard of a load of gold that was taken off a Spanish Galle on by French pirate, Francois L’Ollonais. Wilson met L’Ollonais in a tavern and with his friendly disposition began to converse with the cruelest pirate in the Caribbean. He bought the notorious pirate rum until L’Ollonais was falling down drunk. Wilson convinced the pirate that he and his men would join his crew. Wilson offered to stay watch over the ship in order to allow L’Ollonais’ crew to rest through the night. The older buccaneer was too drunk to make reason of the request and agreed. Wilson’s crew boarded the ship, transferred the load to the Southern Star and got away without firing a shot. Wilson’s intelligence would often prove useful in the future.

Wilson had the Star fitted with cannons while anchored in Hispaniola. The young captain who craved adventure would now find it, turning pirate. The Southern Star was very successful in capturing ships under the Spanish and French flags. Wilson was soon able to obtain letters of marque from the British Crown. As a privateer, Wilson’s efforts intensified without fear of prosecution. As Wilson gained wealth, he was able to pay the crown their share, while keeping the finest ships and flying them under his colors. Wilson’s flagship, the Southern Star continued to work as a privateer vessel while his other ships operated as pirate ships. Wilson had now reached the rank of commodore in the eyes of the brethren of the coast, and was given the name Commodore Courageous. He was second only to his friend, the brethren’s admiral, Henry Morgan.

Commodore Courageous handed the job of captain of the Southern Star to Captain Cannonball, and retired to Florida with his wife, Irene the Pirate Queen. The Commodore continued to command his ships without the long periods at sea and has transferred Captain Cannonball to his new flagship, the Buccaneer.

Irene The Pirate Queen Wilson19 (2)

Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland
Skills: Marksmanship, Leadership, Organizational Skills
Weapons of Choice: Flintlock Pistol and Cutlass

Owner of The Southern Star and The Buccaneer Pirate Ship

Irene Donovan was born to Sean and Catherine Donavan of Cork.  Sean worked as a ships carpenter and went to sea a year after Irene was born.

As a teenager, Irene met an 18 year old captain named Steve Wilson, (Captain Courageous). Six months later they married. Captain Courageous set sail just about a year after their marriage. Irene and their infant son Lawrence learned to deal with what life had to offer, while Captain Courageous was at sea. Irene raised Lawrence in the ways of the sea. When Captain Courageous was in port, he would take his young son to the docks and teach him all that he needed to know.

Once Lawrence was old enough, he became a member of his father’s crew, a pirate crew.

Captain Courageous moved his family to Port Royal. Jamaica. While her husband was at sea, Irene became friends with the wife of another captain. A welsh woman named Mary Elizabeth Morgan. Mary Elizabeth and Irene spent a lot of time together while their husbands were away. On one particular day their conversation turned to ships and their husband’s ways of life. Irene pointed out that she could also raise a crew and double her families’ assets Mary Elizabeth, knowing Irene very well, knew that she was serious.

Irene set out to make her idea a reality. She used the money that Courageous had been sending her to buy a small sloop with 8 cannons. She set out to raise a crew. She talked with the sailors on the docks and in the taverns, but none were interested in sailing for or with a woman. This gave her another idea. Why did her crew need to be male? Finally she signed on the first crew of its kind; an all-female crew. She appointed Priscilla the Pirate Princess as her first mate. She named her sloop, “Sirens’ Call”. On the morning of July 10, 1697 the crew set sail. In the next several weeks, the Sirens’ Call had taken 4 ships: one English, and three Spanish. Irene knew that she couldn’t show any sign of weakness of authority so she offered no quarter to the crews of the defeated ships.

Irene and her crew became known and feared throughout the Caribbean. That’s when she became known as Irene the Pirate Queen. She and her husband’s ship, the Southern Star, often would make port together in Tortuga, Hispaniola or back home in Port Royal. Courageous often discussed the possibilities of joining forces. Irene wanted to make sure that if that were to happen, then her crew would be welcomed also. Courageous assured her that they would be taken care of. Together they built a new ship, the Buccaneer. They made Captain Cannonball her captain and added first mate, William Morgan and his crew. The Buccaneer now sails as the most feared ship in the fleet.

Princess Priscilla “Prissy” the Pirate Princess

Birthplace: England
Skills: Underground Piracy, Looting, Knowledge of jewels, Heir to British Monarch
Weapons of choice: Jeweled swords and daggers

First Mate to Irene the Pirate Queen

Princess Priscilla was born the first daughter of King William III and Queen Mary II of England. Shortly after Priscilla’s birth, King William III of the House of Orange-Nassau set sail for the Bahamas to sign a treaty ending piracy, and to colonize new land for Priscilla to establish a reign as Queen.

Edward Teach, also known as Blackbeard ruled the land, and his crew raided and destroyed the King’s ship. Princess Priscilla was captured and held as a hostage for ransom. Queen Mary became very ill and commissioned privateers to rescue her heir, but never saw her daughter’s safe return.

The Princess skilled herself in the lifestyle of piracy at a young age out of a need for survival under Blackbeard’s control. She became the most skillful and knowledgeable jewel looter in all the Caribbean and was given the alias Prissy the Pirate Princess by the swashbucklers that inhabited the land.

Using her ties to royalty to board, pillage, and plunder British ships, she was able to obtain jewels, riches, and treasures that she had been accustomed and entitled to as daughter of a King.

Years later, piracy was put to an end as the Bahamas were established as a Colony of England. But Prissy was jealous that she was not the established Queen of the Bahamas, and remained an underground pirate.

Hearing of a crew being formed in Port Royal, Jamaica, she was able to secure passage on a merchant ship. Upon landing in Port Royal, she joined Irene the Pirate Queen onboard Irene’s newly acquired ship, the Siren’s Call. Irene was impressed with the intelligence and skills of the young girl, and Priscilla became First Mate in Irene’s all-female crew. Irene treated Prissy as if she were her daughter, rather than a shipmate. Prissy sailed with Irene for just over a year.

During a visit commissioned to him by the British, Prissy met William Augustus Bowles, better known as Captain Billy Bowlegs, who sought to finance and establish a free Indian state called Florida. Prissy seized the opportunity to reign as the rightful Queen that she had been born, and invested her fortune in Captain Billy’s efforts.

With their motley crew, they fled to the Gulf Coast of Florida and joined with Choctawhatchee and Seminole tribes to help them establish independence from Spain. Captain Billy and Prissy were celebrated throughout the area. However, after helping Captain Billy and the Indians in their quest for freedom, Bowlegs was killed in a battle with Captain Cannonball of the Southern Star. Prissy found out that Cannonball sailed for Commodore Courageous, the husband of her mentor, and renounced her reign.

Longing to return to the life of freedom, adventure, and merriment she had grown to love as a young pirate, she re-joined the Captain whom had meant so much to her before, Irene the Pirate Queen and the Crew of the Buccaneer.

Gypsy Pirate Princess Rose Marie

Birthplace: The Island of Hoopty Looptidoo
Skills: Training young mates, Hula-Hooping, Maintaining the Cannons
Weapons of Choice: Dagger and Cannon fire

First Mate of the Buccaneer

Rose Marie, the Gypsy Pirate Princess, is heir to the throne of Hoopty Looptyloo, but joined the Buccaneer as a mate to escape an arranged marriage set by her father, the King, to a Spanish Captain. Having no interest in marriage, she fled to the closest pirate port and asked Captain Cannonball to join his crew. She quickly proved herself a worthy pirate and soon was given the responsibilities of First Mate.

Rose Marie loves to transform the young mates into fearless, brave, and noble pirates when they come aboard the Buccaneer. Teaching lads and lasses to sword fight and helping them find treasure is her favorite part of her daily adventures! She also loves being able to add a bit of magic and excitement into the lives of all visiting pirates. She is a tough princess, and is very talented with a hoop or daggers, depending on her situation.

When on shore-leave, Rose Marie enjoys dancing with her hula-hoop on the white sand beaches of Destin and can sometimes be found hunting for oysters along the harbor — she’s rather fond of the pearls!

Rose Marie will return one day to reclaim her right as Queen of her people, but not until she has seen the world and lived out her dreams of a life full of adventure, intrigue, and of course, treasure!

Kirby Jake Scarborough

Birthplace: North Yorkshire, England
Skills: Cannonfire
Weapons of Choice: Cutlass

Kirbert Jacob Scarborough was born in North Yorkshire England. He was raised in the Borough of Scarborough, a small providence facing the pass to the North Sea of England and Scotland to the west.  Kirby Jake was a poor child who tried to support his Mother and brother by working on the docks of Scarborough, learning trade after trade until one day he became a Cabin Boy on a proper merchant ship, gaining a year at sea and some pay. Upon the proper age he joined the British Royal Navy, and served in her Majesty Queen Anne’s military. Growing up at Sea, Kirby Jake was educated by a caring Captain Atwell and a ship’s Physician, Dr. Wilson and learned his way around a ship although he was always in trouble for being cheeky and unruly.

After 10 long years more of hard work, sailing the world for Queen Anne, fighting for the glory of England, and truly making little money, Kirby Jake was due for a promotion to Captain. He had served a long, sturdy career and was ready to accept his just reward, taking the helm of The Royal Sovereign II , a magnificent new Brigantine warship, with heavy gun. Kirby Jake was also arrogant and too self-assured. Kirby Jake was not chosen. He snapped in anger and felt betrayed by England. He wanted to be free and receive his own wealth and take what he wanted from then on. “If they doesn’t do right by me, I’ll be taking what’s mine!” they heard him say. Days later, Kirby Jake took control of the H.M.S. Royal Sovereign II in the night, with a faithful crew of merchantmen, felons, former slaves seeking escape to freedom and anyone who would sail from the local taverns and ports. He did escape that night and would go on to be a most aggressive Pirate, attacking British, French and Spanish ships, plundering and pillaging all he could carry but he always let the captives go, to spread his legend or gave them the option to join his Crew on the newly named, “Scarborough’s Right” Pirate ship. He wanted to be a famous Pirate and get rich, after all, not kill anyone.  He tried to use his brain more than his sword. 

Upon the day of a  voyage from Port Royal to Havana, Kirby Jake was sailing around the north tip of Cuba when he was met by an angry fleet of British Navy, looking for Pirates and traitors. Strangely beyond coincidence, a monster storm hit them from the Southeast as the cannons fired. Pirate war raged on the Caribbean Sea, the winds howled and the sea churning beneath them, with waves breaking at 15 feet or more. Kirby Jake was outnumbered, weather beaten and under experienced. He was losing, sinking into the abyss – treasure, crew, ship and all. The Sea was against them, England was against them! And what of Heaven?! It was the last straw!!   Kirby Jake raised his fist to the sky from the foremast of his sinking ship. He challenged heaven itself and swore revenge against all who would oppose him. With all his rage he challenged God himself as he went below the salty water.

Kirby Jake awoke wet, cold and alone on white sand of a beach. No ship, no crew, no nothing but the wind and the seagull’s cries. Kirby Jake stood, and looked around him. He could not believe what he saw. He discovered later on that it was the year 2013. He was on the beach in Destin, Florida, in the Americas (Spanish Territory he remembered). He later, after many escapes from the men with black flintlocks, found open scrolls of scribed words beside the glass markets. He finally knew in his heart what had transpired. He challenged heaven? He challenged God.  His anger had defeated him.  He knew he had done wrong.  He wasn’t angry anymore. His heart was at peace. He loved to sail, he loved being a free man, a pirate. Kirby Jake was taken on board by The Infamous Captain Cannonball and his mighty pirate ship, The Buccaneer. Befriended by this Buccaneer Crew including Princess Prissy, Irene, The Pirate Queen, and the mighty Commodore Courageous, Kirby Jake Scarborough must pay forward the kindness shown to him, by teaching the true path of the Pirate, with honor and dignity (sometimes with cheeky sarcasm), to kids and the young at heart.

Red Tom

Birthplace: Lizard, Cornwall, England
Skills: Tomfoolery, Mischief
Weapons of Choice: Squirt Pistol

The son a pelican and a sea turtle, Red Tom has quite an enormous beak. His pelican mother tried to drop him off at the circus, but the size of his ears scared the elephants. He took to a life at sea after stowing away aboard the Buccaneer and has been there ever since.

Family Pirate Adventure

If ye dare step aboard and cruise these waters in search of undiscovered treasure, hearty Arrrrgs from our friendly crew await you, as you enter the atmosphere of adventure and fun for the whole family. Music and excitement fill the air as you and your hearties board our ship and the crew prepares for departure.

We begin our search in Destin Harbor and proceed into Choctawhatchee Bay with our merry band of Buccaneers. Your crew will interactively entertain while training the Scallywags and Lil Bucs the basic skills of pirating. Merriment and excitement continues with sword fighting, water gun battles, dancing, story telling, and treasure hunting. Adult mateys join in with your children, or simply kick back, enjoy the island music, take in the scenery, and watch the little ones have the time of their lives.

“Treasure off the port bow!” Someone exclaims and all attention draws to a float line marking treasure buried in the sea. All hands on deck join in to hoist the treasure aboard.

Buccaneer is a 100’ Pirate Ship, built in 2012, equipped with 2 restrooms and plenty of room to walk about. Inside the galley, the pirates and wenches serve up hot dogs, smoothies, soft drinks, beer and wine, and other various snacks.

Our priority is to create an exciting, family-fun adventure that is like no other. Aboard the ship, safety and passenger comfort are great concerns and you are in good hands with experienced captain and crew. Join us for your two-hour thrilling voyage that your whole family will remember as the highlight of your Destin Vacation.

Unlock the treasure of your heart and let your dreams come true!

Private Cruises

Create a unique experience for your special occasion while enjoying a relaxing cruise aboard the Buccaneer! With capacity for up to 149 guests, the Buccaneer is perfect for your event or gathering. We can accommodate family reunions, business meetings, wedding receptions, church groups or birthdays. Food can be catered to your taste, from the simple to the most exquisite, and we can recommend several options. 

The Buccaneer is a 100-foot double deck, vessel. U.S. Coast Guard approved for up to 149 passengers, the vessel is equipped with a galley, restrooms, and a state-of-the-art sound system. Rates vary seasonally and includes the boat, captain, and crew for a minimum of two hours.

For more information, please contact us at 850.269.0896.


Your special day deserves a once-in-a-lifetime experience! Weddings aboard the Buccaneer Pirate Ship offer an atmosphere like no other, set on glistening emerald green waters and views of pristine sugar-white beaches. When the most precious moment of your life is accompanied with the spectacular, breathtaking scenery offered aboard the Buccaneer, you are sure to make the most important day of your life into the most unforgettable moment, not only for you, but for your other half, family, friends and loved ones alike. For more information, give us a call at 850.269.0896.

Field Trips

Looking for a fun and unique field trip for your students? Come aboard the Buccaneer and enjoy a safe, entertaining, and fun pirate cruise!

The Buccaneer is certified by the U.S. Coast Guard to carry 149 passengers. Our boat docks at HarborWalk in Destin, Florida, located at 100 Harbor Boulevard. HarborWalk has adequate parking facilities for buses and there are several on-site dining options.

Please contact us for pricing by calling 850.269.0896.