See & Do

Australian National Maritime Museum



Address
2 Murray Street
Darling Harbour
Opening Hours

10am – 4pm
27 Nov – 24 Dec

9.30am – 6pm
26 Dec – 31 Jan

General Entry Free

*Days and times may vary due to COVID-19 restrictions. View museum website or call ahead before you visit.

Map, showing Australian National Maritime Museum

Discover Australia’s fascinating maritime history and one of the world’s largest collections of floating museum vessels.

Australia, the world’s largest island continent, has an incredibly rich maritime history. From what may be the world’s earliest boats crafted by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people thousands of years ago to the iron battleships of the modern era, Australia’s past, present and future are mired in the marine.

A visit to the Australian National Maritime Museum is a great way to see examples of those vessels and learn about our country’s fascinating history on the water. It’s one of the best things to do in Sydney for boaties, history buffs and kids.

Welcome to the Australian National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour

The Australian National Maritime Museum is in a prime waterfront spot on King Street Wharf just a few minutes walk from the Darling Harbour Ferris Wheel. It houses the country’s leading collection of maritime artefacts, exhibitions, research and learning resources. 

The museum’s impressive collection of floating historical vessels is the favourite of most visitors and one of the largest collections of its type in the world. Visitors to the museum can board and explore the vessels to find out what life was like on them all those years ago. If you’re looking for things to do with kids here in Darling Harbour, boarding a real, working submarine should be top of your list!

Exhibitions and permanent galleries are another highlight. These include explorations of indigenous Australian’s relationship with the ocean through historical artefacts, fascinating exhibitions and activities for kids. For those who want to take their learning to the next level, the Australian National Maritime Museum also offers workshops run by qualified and experienced teacher guides. These sessions are imaginative and hands-on, suitable for all students from university to primary school level. 

And the best thing? After a visit to the museum, you’ll find yourself in the middle of the best entertainment, restaurants and bars that Sydney has to offer thanks to its location in the heart of Darling Harbour. 


Tour real historical vessels at the National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour

Ever boarded a real gun ship? How about a cold war-era submarine, or a replica of James Cook’s famous HMB Endeavour? Take a trip to the Australian National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour and you can do all of the above and more. 

Kids (and big kids) will love boarding the Destroyer: HMAS Vampire, Australia’s largest museum vessel and one of the country’s last giant gun ships. This monstrosity of steel weaponry served in the navy from 1959 to 1986 and has dozens of high powered weapons on board. When you board, you may bump into retired navy personnel who are there to give tours and answer questions. 

If you’re wondering what to do in Sydney, there are several more boats to tour. That includes:

  • A cold-war era submarine called HMAS Onslow that was used to track the movements of Soviet submarines. 
  • A replica of James Cook’s famous ship, the HMB Endeavour. 
  • Duyfken or ‘Little Dove’, a replica of the first foreign ship to reach Australian shores in 1606. 
  • SY Ena, a luxury steam yacht built in 1900.

These boats give visitors a chance to see, touch and experience history, gaining a rare insight into life at sea in days gone by. 


Events at the National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour

If you’re wondering what’s on in Sydney this weekend, don’t make plans without checking the events calendar at the National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour. The museum hosts a number of fun events including sensory experiences for kids, special tours for babies and carers, drinks and painting by the water, high teas on steam ships and much more. 


Getting to the Australian National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour

There are so many things to do and see at Darling Harbour’s National Maritime Museum that you’ll go back again and again. Luckily, getting there is easy whether you’re walking, driving or taking public transport:

  • Walking: the museum is a quick 12 minute walk across the iconic Pyrmont Bridge from Sydney CBD. 
  • Driving: there are countless parks nearby the museum including a Wilson Parking building next to the Novotel just a six minute walk away.
  • Public transport: The Pyrmont Bay light rail station is a minute from the museum, while the Town Hall Railway station is 10 minutes walk away.

Intrigued and want to see more? Buy tickets online here to see one of Sydney and Darling Harbour’s most fascinating attractions today.

View the Maritime Museum's Reopening Plan

What's on at Australian National Maritime Museum

14
Feb
31
Oct
One Ocean, Our Future
Marvel at the wonders of the ocean and the diversity of Australia's marine life
View Event
26
May
05
Mar
Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Reconnect with nature.
View Event
05
Jun
04
Sep
First Sunday of every month
High Tea on Ena
Treat yourself or someone special to a unique, intimate high tea on board the stunning Edwardian Steam Yacht Ena on Sydney's Darling Harbour.
View Event
25
Jun
14
Aug
Open everyday
Sea Monsters: Prehistoric Ocean Predators
While dinosaurs ruled the land, huge prehistoric reptiles hunted the depths. Are you ready to meet them?
View Event
02
Jul
17
Jul
Departs daily
Heritage Harbour Cruise
Climb aboard the Harman for a unique 1 hour cruise on Sydney Harbour
View Event
03
Jul
10
Jul
NAIDOC Week Celebrations at the Maritime Museum
Celebrate NAIDOC Week 2022 at the Maritime Museum with a range of cultural activities.
View Event
03
Jul
17
Jul
Open everyday of the holidays
Winter School Holidays at the Maritime Museum
Explore under the surface these school holidays
View Event
16
Jul
01
Oct
2 pm - 5 pm
Sail on Duyfken
Climb aboard the tall ship Duyfken for a spectacular afternoon sail on Sydney Harbour.
View Event