Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center

Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center, Alpena

Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center

Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center
5
About
The Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center is a visitor center for the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary, featuring exciting exhibits for all ages. The exhibit, "Exploring the Shipwreck Century", includes a full-size replica of a wooden Great Lakes schooner and a shipwreck where visitors can walk the decks, feel a Great Lakes storm, and touch the massive timbers of the boat resting on the lake bottom -without getting wet!
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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5.0
128 reviews
Excellent
100
Very good
27
Average
1
Poor
0
Terrible
0

MichiganMelissa04
Plymouth, MI572 contributions
Great museum
Dec 2019
My husband and I really enjoyed our stop at this museum. It was a cold winter day and we were the only ones here! I loved all of the exhibits and, especially, the anecdotes about the shipwrecks. Many sad tales. Worth a stop in!
Written February 23, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

AlpenaBill
Alpena, MI18 contributions
Hidden gem
Oct 2019
Great place to visit with or without children. Lots of information about Great Lakes history. Very interesting and we will visit often.
Written December 5, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Brian A
30 contributions
Hard to find but worth it.
Nov 2019
It's open year round every day and it's FREE. In the summer they offer ship wreck boat tours but because I went in November that part was closed. I think that part costs. They offer a nice gift shop and the staff is very friendly. Lot's of ship wreck items and a vessel inside the building that gives you a feeling of how terrifying it would be to weather a storm in the 1800's on a wooden sailing ship caught during a storm on one of the lakes.
Written November 18, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Kathy B
Port Austin, MI23 contributions
cool place
Aug 2019
Nice place to visit, always something to see and do,,it really has alot of informational things going on
Written October 9, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

SummerTyme08
Byron Center, MI35 contributions
Great Lakes Exhibits and Artifacts
Sep 2019
We enjoyed viewing the many artifacts recovered from shipwrecks located in the Thunder Bay National Maritime Sanctuary. Be sure to open the drawers below the exhibits for more items of interest. The museum is free. Be sure to walk around the outside areas and enjoy the river and park as well as a short walk into town.
Written September 14, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Roger B
Grand Rapids, MI110 contributions
Hidden Gem
Aug 2019
During a recent weekend trip to northeastern Michigan, we stopped at the Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center. It is free to the public and has many great exhibits from ship wrecks located around the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. We would highly recommend stopping to see the history from this part of Michigan.
Written September 4, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Lois B
Wauseon, OH92 contributions
A wonderful place to visit.
Aug 2019
This museum was well arranged and user friendly. We especially enjoyed the movie. The employees very helpful.
Written August 22, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Sally H
6 contributions
Shipwrecks Remembered
Jun 2019
I took my brother here, who was visiting from Nevada He loved it (and if it is not cars he is hard to please) I had been here before with my Grandsons and another time with a friend and another time with my daughter and I enjoy it each time, more than the first. so much to see and learn so interesting
Written August 21, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Dennis R
Oscoda, MI188 contributions
Should divest from glass bottom boat tours
Aug 2019
I would have given the museum 5-stars, except for the fact that they book the glass bottom boat trips and encourage callers who telephone for information to purchase tickets online to ensure seating. The boat is seldom seaworthy and cannot sail. This impacts the reputation of the museum.

We drove from Oscoda, MI, to Alpena, MI, yesterday in order to see the museum in the a.m. and to take the glass-bottom boat cruise afterward. We had friends who had driven up from the Flint, MI, area primarily to visit the museum and take the tour. We were advised that the boat would be out of service until at least 08/26/19.
My wife and I have tried to take the boat trip 4 times in the past 2 years; each time the boat has been unseaworthy. I am glad that we did not order the tickets online as suggested by museum staff.

Needless to say, this tainted our trip and negatively influenced our enjoyment of the museum, which by the way, is well worth one's time to visit. The museum offers many artifacts of shipwrecks in the Thunder Bay area. They have an excellent reconstruction of one of the vessels in which, through sight and sound, one actually senses somewhat of what one would experience had they been sailing on the vessel in the 1800s. A visitor actually "feels" the ship rolling and rocking as if in a storm. Audio effects include thunder and rain, while illumination gives one the sensation of lightning and rolling waves. The museum is a "must-see" for people interested in maritime history.

Hint to the museum: let the organization that owns the glass bottom boat tours fend for themselves. Do not allow their poor reputation impact that of the museum.
Written August 20, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

BIGDUDE51
Chattanooga, TN17 contributions
Well worth your time
Aug 2019 • Family
We’ve visited multiple marine museums and educational centers around the county, but this one is near the top of the list. Gives a great overview of the Great Lakes region and highly interesting information about the local ships wrecks. Unfortunately the boat ride was cancelled due to issues with their boat. Well worth the time!
Written August 15, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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