The Maritime Museum in Barcelona is appropriately housed in the Royal Shipyard. The building itself is pretty remarkable, with parts dating back to 1285. There is written evidence from 1241 during the reign of James I of Aragon, that the site was dedicated to shipbuilding from even earlier and recent excavations uncovered a Roman graveyard on the site.
The goal of the shipyard was building galleys for the Aragonese Armada, but as was the norm for the time, it also doubled as a naval arsenal. At the height of its use, in 1423, the shipyard produced twelve galleys at the same time for the then ruler Alfonso V of Aragon. In 1571 the galley 'Real' was built for John of Austria and became the flagship in the Battle of Lepanto, where Christian forces known as the 'Holy League' defeated the fleet of the Ottoman Empire in the Gulf of Corinth. A replica of the galley is the centre piece of the museum.
The shipyards continued to produce vessels until the mid 18th Century when operations were moved to Cartagena and the Spanish Army moved in. The building was eventually given to Barcelona City Council in 1935 and the Maritime Museum opened its doors in 1941.
The Maritime Museum itself shows the story of navigation interwoven with the history of the Spanish Navy. Apart from examples of various craft, you can see art work, models, navigational instruments and weapons. The museum regulary hosts local events, including the super cool Barcelona Surf Film Festival.
If you visit on a Sunday after 3 o'clock in the afternoon you can get in for FREE! Yeeha and the little cafe in the courtyard is a great place to escape the madness at the bottom of Las Ramblas.
Temporary Exhibits Free Of Charge
NO TICKETS AVAILABLE ONLINE
Mon to Sun
10.00 until 20.00
closed Dec 25 & 26 / Jan 1 & 6