Landing Page - Exhibits

Special Exhibits

Limited time only: In addition to our extensive permanent collection, our current special exhibits include beautiful black-and-white photographs of ocean-going yachts and exquisitely detailed miniature models of ships. Find out more below, then plan your visit online.

  • Visiting Exhibits
  • Permanent Exhibits

The Maritime Museum of San Diego collects and exhibits ships and boats, art and artifacts, featuring one of the finest collections of historic ships in the world. Two of our vessels are National Historic Landmarks, and all have stories that are both unique and representative of broader maritime culture. Throughout the museum, the rich histories of these vessels come to life with artifacts and images of a lost world, a world of our dreams and of our grandparents' distant memories.  

 

The ships are complemented by a variety of on-board exhibits, including original artwork, photography, and one of the best collections of ship models in the United States. Perennial Exhibits present the diversity of San Diego's maritime legacy; from the earliest commercial fishing ventures to the establishment of San Diego as a hub for underwater research; from the events leading to first contact between Native Americans and European explorers to the region's steady progress to become the largest concentration of naval power in the world.

 

The Maritime Museum of San Diego's permanent exhibit collection is presented in five galleries representing major themes of maritime history and their relation to San Diego, its harbor and strategic position on the Pacific. Present permanent exhibits include; Age of Sail, Age of Steam, Charting the Sea, Harvesting the Ocean, and San Diego's Navy.



Age Of Sail
Age Of Sail
All the technology of the age of sailing and explorers

Exhibits aboard the 1863 bark Star of India place her in context as an example of...

Age Of Steam
Age Of Steam
The world at the time of steam power

  The Age of Steam exhibit incorporates many features of the Ferryboat Berkeley[steam-ferry-berkeley/]. She was part of the...

Charting The Sea
Charting The Sea
Technology and History of Navigation

  Charting the Sea covers two major eras of Pacific maritime history; the Age of Exploration and...

Harvesting The Ocean
Harvesting The Ocean
San Diego area commercial fishing

  Harvesting the Ocean chronicles the growth and subsequent decline of commercial fishing out of San Diego....

San Diego's Navy
San Diego's Navy
History of the Naval Presence in San Diego

  San Diego's Navy is the only exhibit depicting the remarkable history of the United States Navy...

Special Exhibits at the Maritime Museum bring fine art, photography, and sculpture to unique settings that add context and depth to the subject matter.  These exhibits typically highlight regional or Pacific maritime history, feature a genre in the depiction of ships or seaports, or showcase the product of a living artist working creatively in the field of naval or maritime history.


Maritime Impressions
Maritime Impressions
Showing April 12, 2014 to Feb 1, 2015

*Compass Gallery aboard Berkeley.* New art exhibit, Maritime Impressions is now open. Included with Maritime Museum General admission ticket purchase. Take...

Tattoos & Scrimshaw
Tattoos & Scrimshaw: The Sailor Art
Showing March 21, 2014 to end of January 2015

*Gould Eddy Gallery Aboard Berkeley.* Tattoos and Scrimshaw: The Art of the Sailor The modern western tattoo evolved from the...