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“Fairly small but well curated and ran by passionate people”

Maritime Gloucester
Ranked #16 of 56 things to do in Gloucester
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Attraction details
Owner description: Maritime Gloucester is Cape Ann's destination for maritime fun with facilities located on Gloucester's historic harbor. You can get inspired by the wonders of marine life, learn about the area's rich maritime heritage, meet ocean creatures, talk to a schooner captain, and become a hands-on part of the working waterfront! A calendar of programs, schooner sails, and family-friendly weekly events, including Labor Day's Schooner Festival. Maritime Gloucester - Oceans of Discovery Open daily in the summer from 10:00 - 6:00 pm. IMPORTANT UPDATE: Maritime Gloucester's Harriet Webster Pier is currently closed to the public as a result of a major harbor clean up effort in Gloucester Harbor. For the remainder of the 2016 season, admission to Maritime Gloucester is free of charge with interactive exhibits open in the Gorton's Gallery, the Children's Room, and the Dive Locker. We have fascinating sea animals in tanks in the WetLab -- including our BLUE lobster! Shop Maritime is fully stocked with tshirts, hats, unique gifts and a large selection of maritime-themed books for the whole family. On Sept. 3rd, plan on a visit to Maritime Gloucester's Maritime Heritage Day when we'll be unveiling a new schooner exhibit to celebrate Gloucester Schooner Festival.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Stairs / elevator, Wheelchair access, Activities for older children, Activities for young children
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
155 reviews
89 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 137 helpful votes
“Fairly small but well curated and ran by passionate people”
Reviewed August 18, 2013 via mobile

Initially I was a bit underwhelmed by the scale and appearance but I am so glad I went.
The "whales" part of the exhibition was educative and interesting. A great intro for anyone hoping to catch a whale watching trip from the area. Interactive but not gimmicky and cleary well informed.
The top floor has a lot of great stuff but it may lack a bit of a narrative. If you are interested in the maritime history of the region, make sure you read "Cod" by Mark Kurlansky ahead of coming to the heritage center. If you have, the artefacts take a while different dimension and are fascinating. If you are not that much of a history buff, not to worry: certain things on exhibition might leave you cold but the rope making machine, and the cockpit replica are sure winners. Do spend a bit of time watching the videos in the fr corner of the room. The time lapse of the construction of a schooner is particularly beautiful and exciting (all the more so as you can see the schooner nearby).
The aquarium is a nice surprise. Even as a grown up you can't help being excited at the idea of petting horseshoe crabs, skates and flounders. The young people who work there are full of knowledge and clearly enjoy sharing their passion for marine wildlife.
All in a great experience and a great intro to the importance of whaling and cod fishing in the development of New England, with some conservation work thrown in !

Visited August 2013
Thank Traveling_Chuck_2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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55 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
West Chester, PA
Level Contributor
164 reviews
50 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Kids loved it and so did the adults”
Reviewed August 11, 2013 via mobile

Small aquarium that is hands on for the children. Lots of marine information. Enjoyed watching kids ages 12, 11, 9 and 3 touch and learn.

Visited August 2013
Thank padingo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gloucester, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
22 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed July 26, 2013

It was not a beach day, so I took my grandchildren to the Heritage center at Harbor loop. To my surprise we had a great time. Even though it is small, it contains a lot of history about the fishing industry and the children loved the touch tanks. The guides were very knowledgeable about the area and answered the many questions we asked. So after the museum we took the Water Taxi. We have a boat and live in Gloucester, so we were no strangers. I must say we had fun riding aroung the harbor and meeting so many visitors. All day for adults $10.00 children under 12 free!! Off and on wherever you want. We stopped in Rocky Neck for ice cream and got back on and rode around. Peter, the captain, is very informative and gives a little history about the city and harbor and can answer most questions. This is surely a great bargain and fun!!!

Visited July 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Yarmouth, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Fun for All”
Reviewed June 20, 2013

It was interesting to see how fishing in Gloucester evolved and also cool to see how they teach visitors of the eco-systems that are found in the area. Kids (except my own) love the touch tanks. Great gift shop at the end with some great books and great souvenirs!! Kids under 4 are free!

Visited June 2013
1 Thank InnSeasonResorts
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Sail the harbor on the Ardelle.”
Reviewed May 28, 2013 via mobile

The Ardelle is a two-masted fishing schooner built by local boatbuilders as a community effort. It is a slightly smaller version of the historic schooners of the 19th century and is an interesting "living artifact". Fully equipped for modern safety requirements, it's a nice afternoon sail around the oldest seaport in America. And they have beer.

Visited May 2013
3 Thank Tim_Hystad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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