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New Bedford Whaling Museum

18 Johnny Cake Hill, New Bedford, MA 02740
508-997-0046
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Ranked #1 of 21 attractions in New Bedford
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Specialty Museums
Owner description: The largest museum in America devoted to the history of whaling, it houses an extensive collection of art and artifacts relating to this industry... more » Owner description: The largest museum in America devoted to the history of whaling, it houses an extensive collection of art and artifacts relating to this industry during the age of sail.Through its educational programs and activities, the Museum looks to the future by engaging children, teaching that they are part of the fabric of the community, critical to its growth, and destined to be a chapter in its history. The Museum is a forum for whale and now fishing conservation, research and symposia. Its cultural outreach extends around the world, with close ties to Japan, Portugal and the Iñupiat people at the Arctic Circle. The Museum is a compelling destination that inspires all visitors to reflect on the complex issues that shaped the past, remain critical today, and inform a sustainable future. « less
Useful Information: Activities for older children
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173 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Northbridge, Massachusetts
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2014

The New Bedford Whaling Museum is a must see! We spent one full day here but could easily have spent two days. This museum has an extensive collection and was quite impressive. The museum is well organized and in immaculate condition. The staff was extremely friendly and helpful. You won't be disappointed visiting the New Bedfor Whaling Museum!

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Columbia, South Carolina
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
10 attraction reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2014

This museum surpassed expectations with much more to see than you would think. Great exhibits for families. We easily spent two hours. The staff are friendly and helpful. Take the guided tour if you can.

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Evanston, Illinois
Top Contributor
90 reviews 90 reviews
71 attraction reviews
59 helpful votes 59 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2014

Having a few hours to kill while waiting for our shuttle to the Providence airport (we had ferried over from Marthas Vineyard), we took the recommendation of our shuttle driver to visit the Whaling Museum. This was an excellent tip. All ages in our party were able to enjoy the very engaging exhibits. It was easy to breeze through and... More

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Campobello, South Carolina
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2014 via mobile

We were so impressed with this museum. Very educational and informative, and SO MUCH to see. The history & exhibits in this place are incredible. Definitely one of the best museums we've ever visited. A Sunday afternoon VERY well spent!

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Palo Alto, California
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2014

New Bedford was once one of the most important cities on the East Coast, and learning that a whale could produce 60 barrels of oil made the history come alive. Good short films at the entrance show the whaling hunts and "harvest". Half size replica ship and huge whale skeletons are highlights. Special exhibit on the Portuguese Azores and their... More

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Lawrenceburg, Indiana
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 attraction reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2014

Beautiful building....,3 different whale skeletons..... Scaled down Whaling ship on premises...unbelievable collection of harpoons & carved scrimshaw. A very fascinating afternoon.

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Norfolk, Virginia
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
7 attraction reviews
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2014

-Active duty military folks are free. -Whale skeletons are pretty mind-blowing. They have some pretty neat resin casts of ribs and vertebrae that my 3-year-old enjoyed. -There is a lot of information in this museum--if you want to soak it all (or most of it) in, you need awhile. -A lot of information to read, but also a lot of... More

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Griffin, Georgia
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
14 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

This museum had several different whale skeletons, a model whaling ship, and so much more. I just thought we'd kind of pass through, but we ended up spending several hours there. As we got to the second floor, a docent came up and asked if we'd like a personal tour because he had a break before his next scheduled your.... More

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Ashland, KY
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
5 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

This museum was excellent! My husband and I enjoyed it as well as our 8 year old son. Lots of skeletons and information on the history of whaling. My son's favorite thing was the 1/5 size model of a ship that they have built right in the middle of the building. It's setup so that children can climb around and... More

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Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
4 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2014

New Bedford was originally a "pass through" stop. We figured we'd spend at most a couple of hours…the historic district and the museum changed our plans. The two hours was barely enough time for my 9 year old to finish the scavenger hunt in the national park's "junior ranger" program for the historic area. After completing that she was enthralled... More

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