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“So Much to See”

Scottish Maritime Museum
Ranked #2 of 15 things to do in Irvine
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The Scottish Maritime Museum is based in the west of Scotland,with sites in Irvine and Dumbarton. At these two sites, the Museum holds an important nationally recognised collection, encompassing a variety of historic ships, artefacts, shipbuilding machinery, machine tools, and fascinating personal items.Many of these exhibits can be found inside the Linthouse Building in Irvine, a unique Grade A listed, 19th-century historic building known as the Linthouse Engine Shop 'Cathedral of Engineering and at the Denny Tank in Dumbarton, the world's first commercial ship model experiment tank.
Reviewed 3 December 2012

The Scottish Maritime Museum at Irvine may be a bit quiet in winter, but the Boatshop and the Puffer Cafe are well worth seeing. I enjoyed the display of model ships and the shop has well priced items. The staff are very helpful and the selection of maritime books is good. The views across the estuary from the cafe are fascinating with the estuary, mudflats, the old Big Idea building and Irvine Harbourside. The Linthouse building is closed at the moment, however it is very impressive externally.

2  Thank Rossergruffydd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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159 - 163 of 164 reviews

Reviewed 24 August 2012

This museum, part of the Scottish Maritime Museum is situated in Dumbarton close to Dumbarton Central Station & is easily accessed by either bus or train.
Despite being called a "Tank" museum the name in fact refers to the massive Ship Design Testing tank where designers created physical models of the hull of the vessel to be built & tested them in the Tank. This is a fascinating look into how shipping evolved into what we see today & you can still see it in operation if you speak to the staff, there are also numerous other exhibits within this small complex and a cafe` complements the tour.

3  Thank Paul C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 February 2012

Great restaurant lunch. Great amount of information and activities.

2  Thank Rowena R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 August 2011

Family trip to Troon and Largs. Looking at the map, we decided to visit the museum at Irvine on a rainy day and were very pleased that we did. We have a 6 year old and a 12 year old who had a fantastic time building their own boats and testing them in the special pool. I spent hours absorbed in the engineering on display (I was particularly taken by the artistry in the QE2 turbine castings).
The staff were incredibly knowledgeable and I would thoroughly reccommend a visit to the nearby workers cottage (included with the museum entrance), it really brought the time and place to life.
The food in the cafe was also fab and it was very pleasant way to end our visit, sat on comfy sofas watching the wildlife (curlews, roe deer, herons, etc) and the tide come back in. The only negative was that the toilets were clean but clearly a little tired.

2  Thank A F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 August 2011

As a maritime professional,I'd always wanted to visit but never home long enough. Finally made it to Irvine .
The facilty at Braehead in Glasgow seems to have closed so the address for the Museum should now read Irvine/Dumbarton.

In Irvine the main indoor site is located in a vast engine shop relocated from Glasgow& Rebuilt. The Main Building is packed with all manner of interesting equipment and can absorb a good couple of hours for those with a real interest. A lot of work has gone into making the museum interesting for children.
There is an excellent exhibit of Fifes of Fairlie memorabilia and of Clyde Steamers and some beautiful paddle steamer models.
There are toilets & a small gift shop & staf are very friendly and welcoming.

A short walk down tothe harbourside takes you through a lovely retored area to a very nice cafe ,the shipyard workers tenement house and the waterside exhibits.

There is plenty of free parking inside the museum courtyard.

One feels there is huge scope for expansion for this museum not only in Irvine but on Clydeside and that it is being starved somewhat of funding.Aquisition of a couple of large warships or merchant vessels built on Clydeside would be of huge interest.

Dumbarton facility will have to wait till another day as it's far away from Irvine.

Visit highly recommended especially if you have nautical interests

10  Thank buckfast39
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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