National Museum of the Great Lakes

National Museum of the Great Lakes, Toledo: Hours, Address, National Museum of the Great Lakes Reviews: 5/5

National Museum of the Great Lakes

National Museum of the Great Lakes
5
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
About
This is a maritime museum dedicated to the Great Lakes. There are six exhibit galleries, an outdoor maritime park, the Col. James M. Schoonmaker Museum Ship, and the Museum Tug OHIO. While the Ship is open seasonally May- October, the museum and maritime park open year-round. Capacity is limited and pre-purchased reservations is available online.
Suggested duration
2-3 hours
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Popular mentions

5.0
338 reviews
Excellent
275
Very good
54
Average
9
Poor
0
Terrible
0

ransom007
Anaheim, CA1,133 contributions
Wonderful museum about the history of the Great Lakes
May 2021
The museum has free parking. There are 2 options for admission--museum only or, for an additional fee, walk on the pier and visit the ships. This museum is a wonderful history of shipping and commerce on the Great Lakes. There are many artifacts, photographs, information boards, maps, and videos. There is even a section about the Great Lakes as a habitat.. Some of the exhibits are hands on. There is a gift shop. COVID-19: Employees were masked and visitors were expected to remain masked and maintain social distancing protocols during their stays.
Written May 27, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Dennis W
Cincinnati, OH93 contributions
Good perspective of the Great Lakes
May 2021
We were interested in the museum (not the ships for an extra $6). The exhibits were very well done and the signage readable.
Written May 25, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Andy P
Paris, IL158 contributions
Good for a couple hours.
May 2021 • Couples
Lots of history and artifacts about all 5 Great Lakes. Some changes because of covid but still lots of exhibits. Reasonably priced admission. The tour of the boat was very nice and gives you an idea of what life on a ship is like.
Written May 22, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Svickers74
Lapeer, MI60 contributions
Fun visit
Apr 2021
I like to visit museums and usually make my kids go to something while on our trips. They are 12 and actually really loved it. Lots of interactive exhibits even with covid-19. They give each person a stylus to keep you safe. Only draw back was you could not visit the ship which my son was looking forward to.
Written April 3, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Clark F
Toledo, OH6 contributions
Pleasantville along the water...
Jan 2021
You have to see it for yourself...along with the Glass City Metropark it is one-of-a-kind! I can not believe that a field of 100 words are required!
Written January 25, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

D H
JACKSON307 contributions
Good tours, reasonable prices
Sep 2020
This was a nice tour of both the museum and the museum ship. You could also tour the coast guard cutter ship. Parking is free and you could probably spend about two hours easily here. Lots of information to take in and learn about the Great Lakes and the ship. The museum gives you a stylus to push the buttons with on the displays so you can still be interactive with them. We have noticed that during the Covid pandemic that a lot of museums have just taken these exhibits out and you cannot use them. This really takes away from the whole experience of the exhibits. With using the stylus you can still see and do everything which is nice to have something “normal”.
The walk up the gang plank of the James M. Schoonmaker Museum is quite a steep ramp, both up and down so it could be difficult for older people, young children or people with trouble walking. There are also many ladder type steps throughout the ship to navigate. However, both are great self-guided tours so you are able to take as much time as you want visiting, reading and taking photos.
Written January 10, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Richard S
Abilene, TX592 contributions
Great Lakes History Lives On
Oct 2020
This museum is a well designed and worth while place to visit to gain a comprehensive view and understanding of the significance the Great Lakes. The museum has numerous exhibits that proved educational, fun facts, and little known activities have happened over time.

The tug boat and freighter provides the opportunity for a close up view of how the boat and ship were used. It also provides a view of life aboard a working vessel.

During our self guided tour of the freighter, we encounter Jack, a volunteer at the museum. He is a retired pilot of a tug boat provided us with a detailed tour of structure on the bow where the crew sleep and eat. He shared numerous storied about the ship's owner and how his family and friends cruise the Great Lakes in style.

This is a must see item on any bucket list.
Written October 13, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Thank you for leaving a 5-star review Richard. We are so glad you enjoyed your visit with us and also got some great, first-hand stories from Jack!
Written October 14, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Babu2773
Chicago, IL789 contributions
Good Museum and Ships
Aug 2020
When we arrived for our time-stamped entrance (Covid protocol), we decided to tour the tug and freighter first before it became too hot outside. We spent about an hour and a half total for both boats. Both vessels had clearly marked trails so you know where you are going. We spent so much time there because the Schoonmaker had an interesting film that showed the Edmund Fitzgerald and it's a beautiful ship with historic elements still in place. The museum was interesting as well, covering the history of the Great Lakes to present day technology. I grew up on Lake Michigan in Wisconsin and have extensively traveled all of the Great Lakes, but I still found interesting information in this museum. If you don't know anything about the Great Lakes or if you know them well, this museum is worth the admission.
Written August 31, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Thank you so much for your review. We are so glad you enjoyed your experience and hope you will come back again soon!
Written October 6, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Indy-ND
South Bend, IN3,078 contributions
Excellent Museum.
Aug 2020
The National Museum of the Great Lakes was the last add on I made on my little road trip. It very well could be the best stop I made that day.

The main museum is extremely well done with lots of artifacts, photos, models, and information. Some museums can be pretty bland, but not this one. The displays are eye catching. The area about ship wrecks was very interesting.

Once I was through inside, I headed out to the Col.James M Schoonmaker freighter. I had never been on a lake freighter before. You can go down and see a hold, wander the galley and crew area and actually go down and see the engine room, which was impressive. Then you walk to the other end of the ship and see the fancy areas that passengers stay in. The guide answered my question and was very knowledgeable.

I then did the tugboat Ohio, which is a pretty quick tour. When I think tugboat, I think boats that mover larger boats around a port. This was once a fire boat and then turned into a barge tug for the Great Lakes. The guide on the tug explained the different classes of tugs to me. The boat was used not to long ago, until the winch broke and since it is integrated into the design of the boat, it was cost prohibitive to repair it. It's good that they made it a museum ship though.

There are also outside exhibits to wander around and see. All in all, excellent stop.
Written August 18, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Thank you for visiting and sharing your experience here Frank. We are so glad you had a good visit and hope you will return again!
Written August 19, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Mermaid7
Ashtabula, OH30 contributions
Don't miss this!
Aug 2020 • Couples
Be sure to allot at least two hours for your visit here. Tour the boats first and read all of the historical information posted inside them. Then proceed to the museum which is well thought out and informative. This is a must for any "Boat Nerd", even if you have been to other marine museums!
Written August 2, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
We are so glad you enjoyed your visit and hope you will come back again soon!
Written October 6, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about National Museum of the Great Lakes

National Museum of the Great Lakes is open:
  • Sun - Sun 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
  • Mon - Sat 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM