The Estonian Maritime Museum is the institution for collecting, preserving, studying and presenting Estonian maritime culture (maritime history). Our mission is to promote knowledge about, respect for and love of the sea.
The Museum was founded in Tallinn on the initiative of former captains and sailors in 1935. During its long history, the museum has moved on a number of occasions and since 1981, its main exhibition is located in the 500-year-old Fat Margaret tower in Tallinn Old Town. In May 2012, the Maritime Museum opened another exhibition place at the Seaplane Harbour.
Today, the Maritime Museum is one of the largest museums in Estonia, and the most popular one — particularly thanks to the Seaplane Harbour exhibition.
The Seaplane Hangars at the Seaplane Harbour accommodate the Lembit submarine, built in 1937 by the British Vickers–Armstrongs shipyard; a Short 184 seaplane; the Maasilinn ship (i.e. the oldest sunken ship discovered in Estonia’s waters); and numerous other genuine items, like sail ships, boats and naval mines. Besides that, there are the MARU restaurant and a museum shop, cinema rooms, simulators, children’s area and much more. In parallel with the permanent exhibition, the museum offers various seasonal exhibitions on maritime affairs or maritime history.
There is a playground for children and a functioning port in the outdoor space, which also hosts the Suur Tõll icebreaker and other museum ships.
The Fat Margaret cannon tower invites the guests to a trip into the history of Estonian seafaring and fishing from prehistoric to modern times. The exhibition is divided between four floors, and the visitors can also go to the roof terrace, which offers a splendid view of the passenger harbour, the city centre and rooftops of the Old Town.
The exhibition includes over 100 nice ship models, from old sail ships to modern freighters and passenger ships.
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In order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, the Estonian Maritime Museum’s Fat Margaret and Seaplane Harbour are temporarily closed since March 1. There is a playground in the outdoor area of the Seaplane Harbour, and museum ships can be viewed from the quay. The marina accepts ships. Café Maru, which is open on the second floor of the hangars, offers lunch on-site from Monday to Friday from 11 am to 2 pm and the possibility to order delivery to home or to the office.
On October 17, the exhibitions “Unseen Oceans” from the American Museum of Natural History and “The Baltic Sea in the World Ocean” from the Estonian Maritime Museum were opened at the Seaplane Harbor, Tallinn.