Door County Maritime Museum

Door County Maritime Museum, Sturgeon Bay: Hours, Address, Door County Maritime Museum Reviews: 4.5/5

Door County Maritime Museum

Door County Maritime Museum
4.5
Speciality Museums
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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
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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About
Where Great Lakes maritime history comes alive! Located along Sturgeon Bay’s working waterfront, the Door County Maritime Museum showcases the area’s rich maritime roots. The museum features several interactive exhibits, as well as tours of the immaculately restored seagoing tugboat John Purves. Hard-working fishermen, brave ship captains, skilled craftsmen, bold inventors and lonely lighthouse keepers are just some of the personalities you’ll discover in the galleries of the museum.
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.5
431 reviews
Excellent
249
Very good
145
Average
23
Poor
7
Terrible
7

WeezyA2013
Charlotte, NC105 contributions
We do not visit Door County as often as we would like to, but we always make sure we visit this museum. There are many interesting exhibits that create a comprehensive view of Great Lakes history and how Door County is part of it. Definitely get the combination ticket that will give you admission to the museum and a tour of the John Purves tugboat for just $17.00. Part of what makes this museum so wonderful is the docents who work there, including the folks who narrate the tours of the tug. They are a wealth of information about not only the museum exhibits, but also about Door County (yes--that is the old granary sitting next door), and they add so much to visitors' experience. The lighthouse tower is now partly open. While most of the new exhibits were not yet ready when we were there, we were able to go to the top of the tower, which has an outdoor viewing deck with spectacular views of Sturgeon Bay and the ship canal. The museum also has a gift shop with a nice assortment of merchandise. We highly recommend a visit to the Maritime Museum, and we can't wait until our next visit when the lighthouse tower should be complete.
Written October 3, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Mike C
Milwaukee20 contributions
Couples
A must see! The museum is a great experience for families to share the mysteries and history of the area. The new tower is an amazing view and if you are lucky enough to see a sunrise or sunset, you’ll be singing the song from Fiddler on the roof! My parents are local and passionate about the mission of the museum and have been active volunteers for over 17+ years. The events the museum has throughout the year are well attended many folks return year after year. Enjoy your visit! You are going to be surprised! Check out the Maritime webcam online!
Written October 15, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Grmabear
Waupaca, WI206 contributions
Couples
The museum was interesting and the views from the observation deck were nice. The highlight of the museum was definitely touring the tugboat John Purves. Unfortunately the young man at the desk told us there would be a few steps when in reality there are a lot of steep, narrow steps and my husband struggled with those (should probably tell people before they buy a ticket and not when the tour has started). The volunteer doing the tour did an excellent job and knew a lot about the tugboat. We were there over 2 hours.
Written August 2, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

smcdaniel
Ariton, AL492 contributions
Not at all what was represented. I have researched our trip to Sturgeon Bay and was excited to see the museum and tower. However, when we entered the museum, the receptionist took our money and said to visit the first and second floors. I was confused but didn't ask questions. When we finished, I asked about the John Purvis Tugboat. She told us that they were working on the concrete in front of it and we couldn't access it. There was never anything mentioned about visiting the tower. I've just reviewed the website and it doesn't say anything about an admission cost for the tower so I assume that it's part of the museum admission. Here is what the website says " Now, the Museum is expanding our main location with the landmark Jim Kress Maritime Lighthouse Tower."

The receptionist was less than friendly and completely unhelpful. The fact that this very important fact was not presented to us is totally unacceptable. The museum was OK but I wouldn't spend $10/pp to go back. I feel that I'm an owed an explanation from the director.
Written May 11, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

CEPW
Saint Louis, United States26 contributions
Good introduction to Door County and Sturgeon Bay. The guide was knowledgeable about landmarks and history. View was great and it was fun to see bridges open up to allow boats through. The museum displays are a work in progress, so must be changing all of the time. Steering the ship through the canal was fun.
Written July 1, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Beatriz121
Wisconsin910 contributions
We made a return visit to the Maritime Museum because I especially wanted to see the views from the new tower. A short video prior to taking the elevator up to the top provides a nice introduction. Once in the tower, the view is wonderful but since we visited on an extremely cold day, we didn't have the benefit of seeing a lot of action that would be happening during the summer.

A very realistic, interactive display allows visitors to pilot a boat through the channel using a large ship wheel. Veering off course causes the ship to crash. Along the journey, you hear the radio calls and the Sturgeon Bay bridges open up so that you can pass through. As adults, we had a blast. I'm sure kids would be thrilled to have the experience.

In the tiny workshop, four men were working on a new shiplap boat that will eventually be raffled off. They were very generous with their time, answered a lot of my questions, and even pulled out pictures of past creations.

As seniors, the $10 admission fee was certainly reasonable.
Written February 6, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Thomas R
Bryan, United States124 contributions
Outstanding museum of the history of shipbuilding in the Sturgeon Bay area. I was totally amazed at the breadth of shipbuilding that happened in this area. Museum is extremely well laid out with, what appeared to be, hundreds of ship models that had been built by the ship builders located here. Great photos and lots of history to read.
I highly recommend visitors to Sturgeon Bay visit this museum.
Written September 17, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Cynthia/ashley K
Jackson, United States15 contributions
Our family visited the museum and started by going up in the tower. There is an elevator so no worries about steps.The upper level observation deck was closed but there was plenty to see in the harbor below. Lots of windows to see the boats and Lake Michigan. Inside the museum you can steer a ship, look into a periscope, and participate in a tree raffle if you want. At this time of year they have it decked out with holiday trimming and Xmas trees. Some of these trees come with gifts and are worth quite a lot if you win one There is much to view in the museum and you can learn a lot about ships that have sailed and some that have floundered in the Great Lakes.It's an interactive museum in some areas which is fun.
Written December 6, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Sue N
Columbia, MO204 contributions
Great museum to learn about the history of the canal that was built for shipping to reach from Lake Michigan to Green Bay without having to around the pennisula. Ineractive displays will educate and entertain. Great views from the tower!
Written August 4, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Doug B
31 contributions
This is a nice little museum about the maritime industry in the Door County area. It was very informative and very interesting. The only sad thing is that the outdoor viewing area at the top of the "lighthouse" was closed due to rain at that time. If you go, make sure to head upstairs and do the boat simulator. We each took a turn and it was fun to try and drive a big boat through the draw bridges of Sturgeon Bay.
Written July 6, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Door County Maritime Museum

Door County Maritime Museum is open:
  • Sun - Sat 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Buy tickets in advance on Tripadvisor. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel at least 24 hours before the start date of your tour for a full refund.

We recommend booking Door County Maritime Museum tours ahead of time to secure your spot. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel up to 24 hours before your tour starts for a full refund. See all 1 Door County Maritime Museum tours on Tripadvisor