Collections Distribution

Models Collection
The Maritime Museum takes pride in its rich collection of ship models. The collection also contains lighthouse models.

Ethnographic Collection
This collection features fishing and seal-hunting equipment, craft tools and sea chests.

Technical Equipment Collection
The collection contains navigation and rescue equipment, ships’ wheels, propellers and lighthouse equipment.

Textiles Collection
Uniforms and accoutrements of the Estonian Navy and commercial fleet are the most valuable part of this collection, which also includes flags and banners. The blue-black-and-white Estonian flag, dating from 1919, under which members of the navy marched on the 1st anniversary parade of the Republic of Estonia, is a real rarity.

Badges Collection
This is a collection of maritime-related medals and badges. More than 50 percent of it is made up of the former captain Lev Burak’s collection entitled ‘The Nautical History’.

Naval Weapons Collection
The Maritime Museum owns the largest collection of naval weapons in Estonia. The oldest among them – naval guns originating from the 18th century – are exhibited on the Seaplane Harbour quay.

Historical Objects Collection
This collection contains sailors’ personal belongings and mementos, gifts, etc.

Watercraft Collection
This collection contains different types of watercraft, most of which are included in the main exhibition at the Seaplane Harbour.

Underwater Archaeology Collection
This collection is meant for preserving objects salvaged from sunken ships, enabling to date the ship and determine her origin. One of the most remarkable examples of this is a 16th-century syringe, which was found near the island of Naissaar and probably belonged to a ship’s doctor. The collection grows by occasional finds because modern principles of research and protection of underwater heritage focus on study on the spot.

Charts Collection
The oldest charts in the collection date from the late 18th century. Among the rarest items is a hand-drawn map of the port of Tallinn from 1856. One of the largest full sets is made up of charts from the Soviet Union period.

Documents Collection
The oldest documents here originate from the early 19th century. The collection is thematically classified as follows:

  • Eesti Riiklik Merelaevandus (Estonian National Shipping Company), Veeteede Valitsus (Maritime Administration)
  • Ports, rescue stations, lighthouses
  • Shipbuilding
  • Sailing
  • Fishing
  • Handwritten materials of sailors
  • Maritime education

Art Collection
This collection is made up mainly of oil or watercolour paintings and graphics. It also contains a collection of maritime-themed bookplates.
The works in the collection depict different types of ships, ports, fishing and the life of coastal people.
The most valuable part of the collection are the so-called captain’s paintings (i.e. paintings commissioned by captains to depict their ships in side view), of which the best known are works by R. Chapell and F. Tammik.

Photo Collection
This collection contains photographs, postcards and photographic negatives of maritime-related objects and persons. Cyanotype and ferrotype prints are also represented, one of which is coloured over and, as such, known as the only one surviving in Estonia. The oldest photo album in the collection dates from the late 19th century. The best-known photographers represented are C.O. Bulla and N. Apostol.

Depot Library
The library is composed mainly of study materials, handbooks and atlases of the late 19th and the 20th centuries that have belonged to sailors or nautical schools. A part of this collection was donated in a gathering campaign even before the Museum was established. The signatures of sailors and stamps of nautical schools and other institutions in a number of books can also be considered as valuable.
Further information about the Estonian Maritime Museum’s collections is available via the Estonian Museums’ Public Portal:


Opening times during the Festive Season

Due to the festive period, we do have some exceptions in our opening times.
During Christmas, we are closed on December 23rd and 24th. As a special gift to our visitors, we are open on some Mondays, December 30th and January 6th.

16. December

Estonian Antarctic expedition calls into London and Cambridge

On the occasion of celebrating 200 years of discovery of Antarctica, the Estonian popular scientific expedition on their way from Kronstadt, Russia to Antarctica calls into London and holds a joint public forum with the Scott Polar Research Institute in Cambridge.

02. September

Estonian Antarctic expedition reaches Oslo

On August 7 an Estonian sailboat, ‘Admiral Bellingshausen’, will stay at Aker Brygge Marina, Oslo, and is open for visiting. At 14:00-18:00 PM a forum “Polar exploration then and now” takes place at the Fram Museum.

05. August

Older articles
Close map


+372 6 200 550 (Mon-Fri 9-17), except on national holidays
Vesilennuki 6, Tallinn

Lennusadam :Tuesday to Sunday 10.00-18.00; Closed on Mondays

Paks Margareeta OPENING 29.11.2019 AT 10.00

View map