18 Best Houseboat Rentals In Northern California


Northern California is one of the most popular travel destinations in the States. The Golden Gate in San Francisco, Yosemite National Park, Lake Tahoe, and Monterey are few of the must-visit destinations. Experience Northern California with other world-class attractions nearby and have a well-spent vacation on a houseboat. Here, we list some of the best Airbnb houseboats in Northern California to choose from. In addition to hotels and vacation rentals with private pool, they’re also one of the best ways to spend a vacation where you can choose from luxurious rentals to inexpensive boats. Take your pick from this list of houseboat rentals in Northern California, and start planning your staycation today.

1. Modern floating home by the San Francisco Bay (from USD 825)

This spacious floating home, surrounded by the majestic San Francisco Bay, provides an escape into a realm of tranquility. You need to bring your camera because everything, from the interior to the exterior of this houseboat is certainly Instagrammable! It has an area of approximately 278 square meters (2,992 square feet) with three floors in a deep water slip on Richardson Bay. The master bedroom is located on the upper level with a king-size bed and a balcony, whereas the lower level has two large bedrooms with queen-size beds. It also has a fully equipped gourmet kitchen, a beautifully appointed living room with a fireplace, and a large dining table where guests can enjoy sumptuous meals. This houseboat has a guest capacity of up to six.

Magical Sausalito Floating Home !
Sausalito, California, United States
47 reviews  Wifi Available
Houseboat 3 Beds 6 Guests 3 Bedrooms 2 Bathrooms

Accommodates: 6

Top guest reviews
Amenities & Room:
loved the style the amount of space and the comfortable yet sophisticated decor
a wonderful comfortable space with wonderful views
great well equipped comfortable home with fantastic views
kids happily spread out in the lower level beds
it’s a fabulous space with many thoughtful touches and plenty of room to spread out
the place was clean and comfortable and we immediately felt at home
very clean large complete kitchen and nice touches throughout
all interaction was fast and helpful
pati is a very nice and helpful host
everyone on the dock was very friendly
pati was a fantastic host and communication was easy and quick
he was always responsive available and attentive without being intrusive
absolutely beautiful home and location
we had a wonderful stay the location is serene but yet so close to everything
very nice place quiet and close to everything
wonderful houseboat extremely well located and nicely decorated
we had such a nice time super fun location and wonderful little home
Read more reviews

2. Cozy houseboat in San Rafael (from USD 106)

This is an attractive houseboat along San Francisco Bay, which you can rent and enjoy with friends or family. It is a cute, newly remodeled houseboat rental in California that provides all the comforts and conveniences that a home can offer. This accommodation is recently rated very clean, with a complete set of kitchen wares, a delightful dining area, and a cozy living room where you can play plenty of fun games. There’s also an open window where you can enjoy the breeze as you sail along. Although WiFi is not available, you can make the most of your trip by enjoying the company of each other, taking photos and making memories.

Newly Remodeled Houseboat!
San Rafael, California, United States
93 reviews
Houseboat 1 Bed 3 Guests 1 Bathroom

Accommodates: 3

Top guest reviews
and super clean top3
this place was very clean and comfortable would definitely recommend
the houseboat is quite cute and clean and quiet at night
very clean and cute place neighbors were friendly
host makes us fill happy
so kind nice host and quick answer for us
communication with the hosts was easy and quick as was check in
very cute and comfortable houseboat in central san rafael close to terrapin crossroads and sol food
super cute place to stay the marina is located just off the highway ample parking
loved that it was close to many parks and had a lot of places to go and explore
the price is good and is probably just the right place for the right person
Read more reviews

3. Boat near Redwood City (from USD 100)

Redwood City is known for its high-tech industry and as the midpoint to the beautiful San Francisco. It has a great climate, perfect for exploring the city and to stay. Be entertained by lots of restaurants, movie theaters, parks, and kayak. The Whisper is a houseboat that is five minutes away from downtown Redwood City. It might be a small-scale boat but it has every essential that you need for a comfortable stay. The boat’s overall ambiance is romantic, clean, and relaxing. Beside the window is your bedroom, a perfect spot for watching the calm of the waters. Your sleeping abode also features a toilet, a tiny kitchen, and a laptop-friendly workspace.

The Whisper
Redwood City, California, United States
180 reviews Superhost  Wifi Available
Houseboat 1 Bed 3 Guests 1 Bedroom 1 Bathroom

Accommodates: 3

Top guest reviews
Amenities & Room:
what a beautiful view from the bed looking out to a shimmering silver lake
space heaters keep it nice and warm and the bed is very comfy
paid a $60 cleaning fee and (to be totally honest) it just wasn’t clean (bathroom & kitchen area)
bathroom is clean on the boat
the bed and linens were very clean and comfortable though
whisper is clean and has everything you would need
it was incredibly clean functional and homey with everything needed for a great stay
marcus was a great host
marcus is a wonderful host
marcus is a gracious host
marcus is a great host
great hospitality great place great host
caltrain station is only a few minutes away which made our visit even easier
very close to some cool local places and also to public transportation
very good value and close to the airport
marcus's whisper provides a unique and beautiful location to stay while on your trip to the silicon valley
luckily there is an adequate shower house and bathroom within walking distance up in the parking lot
Read more reviews

4. Luxurious floating home (from USD 140)

This luxurious floating home with a wooden balcony is a popular accommodation option for both locals and tourists looking to have an enjoyable moment in Northern California. It has all the modern amenities of a house such as a spacious living room, a compact galley kitchen, a wide toilet and bath, a great view of Mt. Tamalpias, WiFi connection with a laptop-friendly workspace, and free parking on the premises. As night falls and you start feeling the cold breeze, there is an available indoor fireplace to keep the place warm. The host also offers unlimited use of bikes and kayaks. Best of all, renting this houseboat does not limit you to a few days’ stay, but up to 28 days or more.

Little Lux. Floating Home
15 reviews Superhost  Wifi Available
Houseboat 1 Bed 2 Guests 1 Bedroom 1 Bathroom

Accommodates: 2

Top guest reviews
Amenities & Room:
centrally located in the quaint houseboat community and has all the amenities for a very comfortable stay
huge flat screen tv bbq kayaks bikes etc
clean and modern with beautiful unobstructed views
stylish decor clean and warwick was always communicative and accommodating
warwick is the perfect host
warwick's floating home is simply one of a kind
warwick is a perfect host - friendly and responsive
last but not least warwick himself is a fantastic host - so responsive and accommodating
warwick was very helpful and easy to communicate with
great location close to 101 nice restaurants and grocery store close by
a special location that we hope to visit again
his location is the best in the area
if you want a special place on the outskirts of san francisco you've found it
Read more reviews

5. Comfortable houseboat with fabulous views (from USD 140)

This houseboat feels like your home away from home! Inside this accommodation, you’ll find complete amenities and essentials. The living room is homey with a fireplace to warm up the area. There’s also a private room that can be locked up for safety and privacy and here, an adjustable Tempurpedic bed that moves up and down will make you sleep better. Waking up in the morning, enjoy a sip of coffee on the balcony facing the San Francisco bay while having a good conversation with your friends, or you can simply observe the seaplanes taking off and landing across the jetty. This charming houseboat can accommodate up to two guests.

Comfy Houseboat with Fabulous View!
5 reviews  Wifi Available
Private room in houseboat 1 Bed 2 Guests 1 Bedroom 1 Bathroom

Accommodates: 2

Top guest reviews
sausalito itself is calm clean and charming with upscale restaurants and everything in between
susan is just an amazing host
Read more reviews

6. Capacious houseboat for large groups (from USD 368)

For large groups, this amazing houseboat is situated in Shasta Marina at Packers Bay and will make for a great holiday rental. Well-appointed and spacious, the two-level houseboat has five comfy bedrooms, a full bathroom, and another half bath. There’s also a bright and well-laid-out living area, a galley, and more areas to relax and unwind in. Guests will also have access to a hot tub, a wet bar, and an area perfect for sunbathing. Enjoy lovely views of the lake and mountains from multiple windows and portholes.

Shasta Marina på Packers Bay Mirage I Houseboat
2 reviews
house boat 14 Guests 5 Bedrooms 3 Bathrooms

Accommodates: 14
Minimum Nights: 0
Refund Policy :

Top guest reviews
the houseboat was clean and in great shape actually fancy
shasta marina has the best employees they were all so nice and helpful
Read more reviews

7. Mt. Tamalpais view from Mediterranean-style houseboat (from USD 600)

To add a Mediterranean flair to your Northern California vacation, rent this beautiful houseboat. It has a Mediterranean-style interior and offers unparalleled views of Mt. Tamalpais. The well-appointed houseboat has an open-concept living, dining and kitchen area, elegant bathrooms, plush bedrooms, a gorgeous kitchen, and laundry facilities. A cozy outdoor deck with ample seating is also accessible to guests. Golden Gate Bridge is just 4.9 mi (7.8 km) away from this rental.

Vicino al Mare, Floating Home, Houseboat, Mediterranean Tranquilty
 Wifi Available
house boat 4 Guests 2 Bedrooms 2 Bathrooms

Accommodates: 4
Minimum Nights: 30
Refund Policy : 100% refund if you cancel at least 60 days before check-in.

8. Chic and stylish Sausalito houseboat (from USD 400)

For a cozy stay with your family and friends, book this chic houseboat in Sausalito. Enjoy soaking up the sun while sitting on the outdoor deck or go kayaking near the dock. Inside, there is a beautiful living area with large windows, an open-plan dining area and modern kitchen, a stylish office, two plush bedrooms and bathrooms, and more. Golden Gate Bridge is just 10 minutes away and the center of San Francisco is a ferry ride away.

Cozy & Cute Sausalito Boathouse
1 review  Wifi Available
house boat 6 Guests 2 Bedrooms 2 Bathrooms

Accommodates: 6
Minimum Nights: 30
Refund Policy : 100% refund if you cancel at least 30 days before check-in.

9. Charming Sausalito houseboat with a view (from USD 311)

This delightful houseboat in Sausalito has two cozy bedrooms perfect for your vacation. The roof deck gives you a relaxing view of the bay, and it has a really comfortable sofa where you can enjoy your favorite beer while taking in all the sights. If you feel like going out for delicious local food, take a leisurely walk to nearby restaurants. The homey and welcoming vibe of this accommodation will surely make your stay enjoyable.

Sausalito houseboat living
Sausalito, California, United States
16 reviews  Wifi Available
Houseboat 2 Beds 5 Guests 2 Bedrooms 1 Bathroom

Accommodates: 5

Top guest reviews
Amenities & Room:
lots of light easy parking well equipped and very comfortable
it was quiet well furnished and clean
house has all you need and it is really clean
great place very well located but not exactly a modern or clean place
alan is a very attentive host and his home is really comfortable and spacious
alan is a great host the boat house is a unique experience
alan is a wonderful host his place is a is simply spectacular
if you want a peaceful stay this is the place very family friendly and quiet
great place in a houseboat community close to downtown sausalito and the highway
this is a great place to stay for a couple or family
Read more reviews

10. Elegant floating home with breathtaking views (from USD 217)

Experience tranquil houseboat living in this chic two-bedroom floating home. With a fully equipped kitchen, cooking gourmet meals will be a breeze. Get a breathtaking view of Mount Tamalpais or the sunset skies from the comfort of the balcony, and enjoy a bottle of your favorite wine as you savor the scenic sights. Wake up every morning to a gorgeous view and the sunlight entering through the big windows. For convenience, this floating home features two modern bathrooms. There is also a television inside the bedroom so guests can watch a movie before going to bed.

Chic Floating Home In Scenic Sausalito
44 reviews  Wifi Available
house boat 4 Guests 2 Bedrooms 2 Bathrooms

Accommodates: 4
Minimum Nights: 31
Refund Policy : 100% refund if you cancel at least 30 days before check-in.

Top guest reviews
Amenities & Room:
janet was very helpful and responsive and made our stay easy and comfortable
the house was immaculate and the beds were perfect for a good night's sleep
comfortable bedding great towels (including the black makeup washcloths ) arrival flowers and spirits and so much more
both beds were first rate the kitchen was very well equipped and the entire unit was very bright
super clean and cozy
it is spotless comfortable and furnished beautifully
very clean and was ready before we got to san francisco
the home is tastefully decorated and well appointed impeccably clean very comfortable and carefully maintained
met the owner and everything was more & better than expected
owner thought of everything and has great instructions in a nice book if something comes up
the houseboat neighbors were very welcoming and friendly and were happy to talk about houseboat life
janet is easily the most experienced organized and thoughtful host we've ever dealt with
the location was absolutely perfect
tam is calming and uplifting
perfect home perfect location
walking up and down the docks was an adventure in and off itself
Read more reviews

11. Fabulous ferryboat on San Francisco Bay (from USD 816)

This spectacular vacation home brings you closer to nature, and the open water surrounding the house will definitely make you feel refreshed. Guests sleep well in the three bedrooms on this houseboat. In the morning, sip your morning coffee with greater pleasure as you take in the tranquil water, trees, and other boats around you. The spacious living room offers plenty of cozy seating options so you can lounge in comfort. Experience luxurious houseboat living with spectacular views in Sausalito.

Fabulous Ferryboat on San Francisco Bay
Sausalito, CA, US
3 Bedrooms 2 Bathrooms

12. Big Dog: a 72-foot (21.9-meter) luxury custom houseboat (from USD 300)

This gorgeous houseboat can accommodate eight people seeking a luxurious vacation experience. Guests looking for entertainment can easily find it in the Big Dog. Enjoy the surround-sound feature of the home’s entertainment system and lounge on the couch while watching your favorite shows and movies. Enjoy a scrumptious barbeque with your friends or family. If you feel like going for engaging water activities, there are paddle boards and one kayak available for use. Your stay here will definitely make your vacation a lot more interesting.

72 foot Luxury Custom Houseboat "Big Dog"
55 reviews  Wifi Available
house boat 8 Guests 4 Bedrooms 2 Bathrooms

Accommodates: 8
Minimum Nights: 3
Refund Policy : 100% refund if you cancel at least 30 days before check-in.

Top guest reviews
Amenities & Room:
the sleep accommodations were comfortable with the downstairs rooms being a perfect place for kiddos to sleep
very accommodating and very clean
big dog was more than we imagined a very spacious and comfortable home on the water
clean quiet and who doesn’t want to wake up on the water?
if you’ve been houseboating before then you’ll appreciate the “big dog” as it’s a custom and spacious boat
the owner was very nice and easy to talk to
vince's communications were consistent and helpful
the owner is extremely nice and is an experienced captain
being on the water was awesome and vince was a great host
vince was friendly generous with delta knowledge and demonstrated incredible expertise navigating the big boat in complex conditions
great location would be great for anglers fishing derby’s out of russos or the sugar barge
Read more reviews

13. Luxurious houseboat on Lakehead (from USD 490)

This 56-foot (17m) houseboat in Lakehead, California, has enough space in its 6 bedrooms to accommodate up to 16 persons. You can comfortably lounge in its spacious living area with its air-conditioning unit or heating system for you to use, depending on the weather. There are two bathrooms with a toilet and shower, and a kitchen that’s fully equipped with full-sized appliances and complete cooking and dining utensils. The houseboat also has a luxurious lounge with a TV, DVDs, and a gas fireplace to ensure your comfort while you and your family stay there. A stairway leads to the rooftop where you can watch the sunset while enjoying drinks from the wet bar, or while relaxing in the hot tub.

Shasta Marina på Packers Bay's Mirage II Houseboat
1 review
house boat 16 Guests 6 Bedrooms 3 Bathrooms

Accommodates: 16
Minimum Nights: 0
Refund Policy :

14. Spacious houseboat on Shasta Marina (from USD 860)

The Sumerset is a new and spacious houseboat on Shasta Lake, which offers a whole new boathouse experience. Its hulled design and full-width cabin create enough space for 20 persons with 6 private staterooms, 2 with queen-size beds, two with full-size beds, one with double bunk full-size beds, and one with a queen-size convertible sofa bed. Guests also have two full bathrooms with a glass-encased shower. Preparing meals is also a breeze, thanks to the houseboat’s fully equipped kitchen. Aside from the luxurious lounge packed with entertainment amenities, guests can party and have fun on the rooftop with a wet bar, hot tub good for eight persons, a TV, and helm stereo.

Shasta Marina på Packers Bays Sumerset Houseboat.
house boat 20 Guests 7 Bedrooms 3 Bathrooms

Accommodates: 20
Minimum Nights: 0
Refund Policy :

15. Classic motor yacht with a bar

This unique accommodation is run by a classic motor that has stood the test of time but is still operational at its best. Renting this vintage houseboat creates an amazing experience with every stay, thanks to the hosts’ outstanding hospitality. Aboard this lovely yacht, you can spend a perfect getaway along the quaint, lovely marina while watching the river sunset. Make it a romantic weekend getaway or lose yourself to adventurous water activity. This yacht also has a lot to offer, amenities-wise: a fully equipped galley, refrigerator, two staterooms and can accommodate up to guests. There is also a barbecue on the deck where you can enjoy homemade breakfast or dinner.

46' Motor Yacht Semper Fi, classic and comfortable
Antioch, California, United States
19 reviews
Boat 3 Beds 2 Bedrooms 1 Bathrooms
Top guest reviews
marina facilities are clean and the other marina people we encountered were very friendly
he offered great recommendations and was extremely helpful overall
eric and susana are wonderful hosts
we would definitely recommend eric and susana to our friends to host them on their next airbnb adventures
eric was an awesome host onboard with us during our 4 day stay
eric and susana were very welcoming and friendly upon our arrival
we were docked in a beautiful and safe location
great location that offers plenty to do in the area
additionally antioch is a more secluded location and access is easier
really cool place to stay
Read more reviews

16. Modest houseboat with picturesque views

Staying in a tiny house that’s like living on the water makes you feel a different vibe. The marina where this houseboat is docked is situated only a few steps away from Jackson London Square where you can enjoy the nightlife, with lots of luxurious shopping options. You may also visit the Farmer’s Market every Sundays or opt to rent a scooter to explore the surrounding charming town. When it’s time to rest, unwind on your comfortable bed and stargaze all you want. This houseboat boasts picturesque views on all sides, so all you need to do is just sit back, relax, and enjoy the views!

Glamping on the water aboard 38 ft. houseboat!
Oakland, California, United States
17 reviews
Houseboat 2 Beds 1 Bedroom 1 Bathroom
Top guest reviews
relaxing clean and met all of our needs
sabine is a fabulous host
sabina is a wonderful host who went above and beyond to ensure my stay was 5-star experience
the ferry to san fran is a small walk away which helped a ton thank you sabine
i’d highly recommend it to anyone looking for a unique relaxing place to stay
Read more reviews

17. Romantic floating private cabin

Couples who are looking for a private stay away from the hustle and bustle, this is the place to be; a floating cabin on a turtle pond. If you’re fond of staying in fishing lodges, then you’ll definitely like this property as it is located on the far-end part of the ranch where guests can enjoy fishing and canoeing. While parties and other events are not allowed, this makes the venue even more intimate and a perfect place to make occasions more special with solemn and simple celebrations. Because it’s located in a ranch, you can also enjoy the company of the friendly farm animals. Inside the cabin, you can only find one sofa bed with no other amenities, so make sure to bring your own essentials and basic needs such as water and meals. Overall, renting this houseboat will provide guests a rustic experience that would surely make you appreciate simple living in the company of nature.

Bodega Bay, California, United States
73 reviews
Houseboat 1 Bed 1 Bedroom 0 Bathrooms
Top guest reviews
the staff are very friendly so are the farm animals
excellent location and private setting
overall great location however
cool location unique experience would go back
Read more reviews

18. A safe haven in Alameda

Alameda is a vibrant and family-friendly destination with diverse restaurants, concept shops, first-class services and other fun things to do. This floating house has two levels and each provides a different kind of comfort and great views. There is one bedroom with a queen-size bed while the other bedroom has common spaces. You may opt to cook meals during your stay or walk around and find restaurants. But make sure to enjoy a perfect breakfast meal paired with hot coffee on the balcony facing the lovely bay. Enjoy this charming accommodation with friends or family!

Lovely and cozy floating home.
Alameda, California, United States
10 reviews
Houseboat 2 Beds 1 Bedroom 1 Bathroom
Top guest reviews
Amenities & Room:
loved having breakfast and great coffee right one the water
nice surrounding and having breakfast outside with a view on the water was awesome
susan is a great host
i couldn’t have asked for a better host
her instructions were very clear and susan was very helpful and hospitable
susan is a great host who responds to communication quickly
the location was ideal and easy to get to from oakland airport
very attractive and comfortable home in a beautiful and quiet location
connections to sf by ferry are close and fun
Read more reviews

Have a wonderful Californian holiday

While there are plenty of unique accommodations like airstream rentals and glamping spots in Northern California, you’ll have a more memorable stay when you spend a soulful night or two on a houseboat. Witness the calming feeling of morning delight while sipping coffee on the balcony or enjoy a little adventure on the waters. Whatever your cup of tea is, make the most of your holidays by renting one of these charming houseboat rentals in Northern California.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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