The fate of a country by the sea is inextricably tied to its ships, which carried people off and brought them back, as well as saved them and helped them flee, marked the start of war and the beginning of peace, depicted happiness and heartache – they were of vital importance to the country and its people.
The turbulent series of events taking place from the inception of the Republic of Estonia to its 100th birthday is reflected in the fates of our ships. ‘100 years on water. The ships of Estonia 1918–2018’, an exhibition at the Estonian Maritime Museum, will bring their exciting and remarkable stories before us.
Each year of the period of 1918–2018 is represented by one ship, in connection with which some monumental event took place during that year. It may be the year the ship was completed or the year it perished; it may also mark the crossing of the equator under the Estonian flag, fleeing to the United States from Sweden, or the launch of Baltic Sea cruises from Tallinn. All kinds of vessels are represented – passenger ships, war ships, cargo ships, sailing ships, steam ships, riverboats, etc. The exhibition is also a recognition of the people who worked, studied, or travelled on these important vessels.
The abundant display of ship models in an impressive environment is supported by modern special solutions and a plentiful selection of illustrations.
The story of our ships is the story of Estonia. The ebb and flow of the waters of time have brought us here today. We have spent 100 years on water.
Come and see the ships of the Republic of Estonia!
The exhibition was open from 24.02.2018 to 13.01.2019
Photo: Erlend Štaub
How to behave at sea or by the sea? What to do when you are in trouble? Who will come to help?
These and many other questions are answered at the new hands-on exhibition in Tallinn Seaplane Harbour. Learn more about the past and present of maritime rescue, listen to the rescuers’ stories, and see a real rescue helicopter and other equipment for helping those in distress.
The exhibition also provides information about how to behave more consciously at sea and by the sea, about what choices can be made in different situations and about what goes on in the head and body in a crisis situation. Survivors of the MS Estonia ferry disaster tell their stories.
The exhibition features many interactive exhibits and simulators. You can participate in training the rescuers, receive a distress signal as the leader of a rescue mission, test the thickness of ice on a body of water and engage in a lot of other exciting activities.
This exhibition concerns us all: beach-goers, fishers, ship passengers, master mariners, rescuers and rescuees. All of us have had some kind of contact with big bodies of water.
The exhibition has been put together in extensive cooperation with leading experts and responsible institutions of maritime rescue in Estonia.
13 August 2016 – 15 January 2017
The Viking weapons and booty displayed at the exhibition speak of bravery and conquest, but this is by no means the whole story of the Vikings. Advanced handicrafts, fine gold and silver jewellery, Arabic coins and skilfully forged weapons and tools speak of highly developed blacksmithing and close trade relations with neighbouring countries. The exhibition consists of over 500 Viking Age finds. It includes original coins, weapons, household tools, talismans, bones and ship details that shed entirely new light on our knowledge of the Vikings, their trade, conquests, magic, beliefs and daily life. The exhibition has been organized by the Swedish History Museum.
29 August 2015 – 3 April 2016
This large joint exhibition is about one of the most dramatic chapters in the history of exploration: the story of conquering the South Pole. Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen and British Navy officer Robert Falcon Scott started their expeditions in 1911 almost simultaneously. Both reached the destination but only one of them returned home. Race to the End of the Earth describes and depicts both teams’ equipment and tactics, and the daily life, thoughts and moods of the men. This exhibition has been organized by the American Museum of Natural History, New York, US, and Musée des Confluences, Lyon, France, and the Royal British Columbia Museum, Victoria, Canada.
12 February – 26 July 2015
This hands-on exhibition for the whole family is about the forces of nature in the realm of water and related colourful stories from maritime history. The visitors can generate waves and whirlpools, steer ships through locks, escape from a sinking ship and much more. The exhibition has been prepared jointly by the Estonian Maritime Museum and Science Centre AHHAA.
20. September 2014−18. January 2015
An exhibition on the sea and fashion
Sea in the Wardrobe is an exhibition on clothes, sea and fashion. We will talk about the development of storm clothes, the striped shirt and frothy evening dresses. More exciting stories about swimwear, navy uniforms and children’s sailor suits. The exhibition rooms will have plenty to offer to fashion freaks, children and even genuine sea dogs!
15 November 2013 − 31 March 2014
The exhibition will feature more than 150 original items salvaged from the bottom of the ocean around the wreck of Titanic at the depth of approximately 4 kilometres. The reconstructions of a number of the Ship’s rooms will take us back to the year 1912, when faith in technical progress was virtually unwavering and Titanic, the world’s biggest and most luxurious passenger Ship of her time, seemed to embody the almightiness of humankind.
The exhibition will be brought to Estonia in cooperation with Premier Exhibitions Inc., an exhibition provider from the United States.
Lets make it together!Read more
The Seaplane Harbour will be closed from January to May 2024 to prepare an updated and fully engaging exhibition. The partners of the Estonian Maritime Museum in renewing the permanent exhibition of the Seaplane Harbour are KOKO architects and MOTOR.
The Estonian-Italian collaborative exhibition ‘VENEZIA – Queen of the Seas’ opened at the Seaplane Harbour on 25 March 2023 and was scheduled to be open until the beginning of January 2024. In the course of interim negotiations, it was agreed that the exhibition at the Seaplane Harbour will remain open until 3 September.