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“Just okay”

Michigan Maritime Museum
Ranked #3 of 31 things to do in South Haven
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: We strive to preserve, interpret, and invite the public to experience and learn about our Great Lakes maritime heritage from our Museum in South Haven.
Reviewed 18 July 2014

This museum is okay. It has some interesting information but it is small. Check out the Friends Good Will boat while you are there. We didn't have time to take a ride on it but we did get to take a tour on it and it is awesome.

Thank granof03
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Emily S, Collections & Office Manager at Michigan Maritime Museum, responded to this reviewResponded 16 January 2017

Glad you enjoyed the dockside tour of Friends Good Will!
Our Museum is constantly expanding and changing...so we hope you return to watch us grow!
Hope you come back for an on-water experience this 2017 season.

Thank you for your review!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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144 - 148 of 207 reviews

Reviewed 13 July 2014

I've been to a lot of Museums in my life and sometimes. Sometimes I happen upon them by accident and sometimes they are destinations. My family goes to South Haven quite often yet I hadn't seen Michigan Maritime so I finally broke that streak on our latest trip. The thing with Museums is that you have to understand what is you are going to before you make the choice you enter. It is a small niche/specialty museum focusing on shipping throughout the Great Lakes, specifically Lake Michigan. If that subject does not interest you, you're probably not going to be very enthused about your experience.

There are two exhibits within the main building. One deals with shipwrecks, their preservation, and salvation while the other deals with an airplane crash that was featured on "Mysteries at the Museum." The subjects themselves are interesting as the stories draw you in. Its a lot of reading and not a lot of artifacts...because they are accidents that took place on Lake Michigan. For these stories to be told, you need to be ready to read...a lot. There aren't many hands-on activities for children and the artifacts are at the bottom of the Great Lakes so don't expect a lot of photo opportunities. The other buildings might be appreciated if you have a maritime background. If boats aren't your thing, it won't be a great experience. Couple that with the $8 admission price (which to be fair, Museums need an admission price to survive) and it might seem to be a disappointment.

The strengths in the Michigan Maritime Museum involve the staff and the They are willing to help with whatever you might need and chat. They also have ship rides for an extra fee (Museum admission is included which is good) which helps if you wanted to go out and see Lake Michigan on a boat. I didn't go on the "Lindy Lou" but I did go on the night cruise of the "Friends Good Will" and that was cool. The crew (dressed as period-appropriately as the Coast Guard would probably allow them) give out orders and sometimes ask you to help out (I'm not good with knots and their explanations weren't great but I have a new respect for 19th century sailors). If you can do it toward the end of night, do it. The sunset is amazing. The cannon demonstrations are also nice, especially if someone is sailing their boat next to you acting as your target. The cruise takes a little over two hours and is good for singles and couples. Kids might get bored of the length but adults will appreciate the views.

So if all you can do is the museum, go down to Sherman's, get yourself an ice cream cone, sit on the benches and watch the ships come in and out because you'll be disappointed with the admission cost versus artifact displays. If you can ride the tall ship, do it because it's a neat experience and you can see the Museum anyway.

2  Thank jkoz148
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 July 2014 via mobile

Museum itself was ok..interesting to find out about shipwrecks/plane crashes into lake Michigan. The best was taking our 5 year old for the pirate chaser boat ride on Friends Good Will.

Thank Emily I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 July 2014 via mobile

My family and I spent about 2 hours exploring this museum prior to a quiet and relaxing boat ride up the Black River. The museum was VERY educational and enjoyed by the entire family. While we were there we were able to see the tall pirate ship dock. My kids were fascinated with that. The Lindy-Lu boat ride was exactly what you'd expect. It was easy going and relaxing. I personally loved looking at all the boats, beautiful homes and talking with the 'captain'. We weren't expecting a thrill ride, so we were pleased.

Thank Meehangirls3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 June 2014

This review is for the museum itself. What a snooze. If you want to see antique speedboat motors and exhibits that are the equivalent of boring books, this place is for you,

So many interesting facts about this area-- where are the stories of pirating? The native Americans?

The talk ship, however, is excellent and the museum staff is very helpful.

Thank Donnalap P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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