national maritime museum greenwich london se10 feature image

Impressive National Maritime Museum Greenwich London SE10

The National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, London SE1, offers a unique journey through our connections with the world’s oceans. It’s a key component of the Royal Museums Greenwich, a celebrated UNESCO World Heritage Site. Catering to all ages and interests, including naval history buffs and casual visitors, the museum presents diverse exhibits. I was particularly impressed by the Sea of Things Gallery, the intriguing collection of ship figureheads, and the elaborate beauty of Prince Fredericks’s barge. The museum also features an excellent gift shop and two cafes, making it an ideal spot to spend leisurely hours. Add the National Maritime Museum to your list if you’re looking for the best London museums or free things to do in Greenwich.

national maritime museum greenwich medusa figurehead

National Maritime Museum Highlights

national maritime museum greenwich divers helmet

I found the Sea Things Gallery a delightful treasure trove of over 600 maritime objects, each with a story. From shop models to ship badges, busts, figurines, divers’ helmets and boat throw rings. Remarkable pieces like a carved whale’s tooth, a Roman stone anchor, a pocket watch from the Titanic disaster and an Ancient Egyptian votive ship model whispered tales of bygone eras.

national maritime museum greenwich ship figureheads

Another favourite was the excellent collection of figureheads exhibit, including the formidable Medusa from HMS Implacable. Each figurehead, once a proud emblem at the prow of a ship, now stood as a testament to the artistry of sailors long past.

national maritime museum greenwich prince fredericks barge

Prince Fredericks Barge is notable for its ornate carvings, gilded with 24-carat gold leaf. The beautiful barge was designed by the architect and painter William Kent and built by John Hall.

national maritime museum greenwich turner the battle of trafalgar
A moment of awe was reserved for JMW Turner’s The Battle of Trafalgar, housed in its dedicated gallery, which I had all to myself like a VIP! Turner’s largest and most controversial painting captured the tumult and courage of the eponymous naval battle.

national maritime museum greenwich nelsons coat

Seek out Nelson’s Trafalgar Coat he wore during his last battle, complete with the bullet hole. You’ll find it in the Nelson, Navy, Nation gallery.

national maritime museum greenwich baltic exchange memorial glass

The Baltic Exchange Memorial Glass is spectacular. It was designed by John Dudley Forsyth and installed in 1922 in London, honouring World War I victims from the Baltic Exchange. After being damaged in a 1992 IRA bombing, it was restored by Goddard & Gibbs and displayed at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich since 2005.

national maritime museum greenwich tudors and stuarts

Other galleries to explore are the Polar Worlds, Pacific Encounters, Atlantic Worlds, Tudor and Stuart Seafarers and Traders. Also, look out for special exhibitions like the Astronomy Photographer of the Year.

national maritime museum greenwich ship simulator
Children will enjoy playing on The Great Map, a grand canvas from which all other galleries seem to flow. It serves as a performance space, a playground, and a sanctuary of relaxation under its vast glass dome. The All Hands Children’s Gallery and the Ship’s Simulator will win them.

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Helpful Information About The National Maritime Museum

national maritime museum greenwich entrance

To find out more, visit the National Maritime Museum. You’ll find it at Romney Road, London SE10 9NF. The closest stations are Greenwich, Cutty Sark Docklands Light Railway and Maze Hill. The museum is open daily from 10 am until 5 pm.

national maritime museum greenwich cream tea

The Parkside Café and Great Map Cafe offer a selection of refreshments. Try one of the Earl Grey Infused Sultana Scones with a pot of tea.

national maritime museum greenwich hms victory gift shop

Finally, the museum shop presented an array of memorabilia, from educational books to nautical models, allowing visitors to take a piece of maritime history home.

national maritime museum greenwich ship in bottle

If you want to explore the area, you may find these articles of interest:

Best Things To Do In Greenwich:

Greenwich Day Itinerary

Greenwich Helpful Area Guide

Ten Things To Do In Greenwich

North Greenwich To Greenwich Thames Path Walk

The Royal Observatory Greenwich

Queen’s House Greenwich

Cutty Sark Greenwich

Best Places To Eat In Greenwich:

Goddards At Greenwich Pie And Mash

Breakfast At Peyton And Byrne Bakery Greenwich

Author: Homegirl London. Photographs: Homegirl London.