The RMS Titanic is probably the most famous shipwreck in the world. Many of us know about the ‘unsinkable’ ocean liner – and its fate – from the 1997 James Cameron blockbuster movie Titanic. But do you know much more than the basics? Pay a visit to a Titanic Museum to learn more. You can visit museums all across the world, from Ireland to the USA. While you’re planning where to go, here’s some essential things to know, as well as our pick of the world’s best experiences.
Construction started in 1909 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The ship then set sail from Southampton on its maiden voyage on 10th April 1912. Then, just before midnight on 14th April it struck an iceberg and sank in less than three hours in the North Atlantic Ocean, close to Canada. 1,514 people lost their lives.
An oceanographer found the ship’s wreckage in 1985. When the expedition reached the wreck, they discovered that it had broken in half on the surface before sinking. From the outset, the Titanic captured the public’s imagination. With millions of people watching the footage of the wreck and the blockbuster movie, the Titanic is still fascinating over 100 years later.
Want to know more about the “Ship of Dreams”? Here are 10 must-see Titanic museums and experiences around the world.
Where to visit a Titanic Museum:
- Titanic Museum – Belfast, Northern Ireland
- Titanic Experience and Heritage Center – Cobh, Ireland
- The Artifact Exhibition – Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
- SeaCity Museum – Southampton, England
- Titanic Museum Attraction – Branson, Missouri, USA
- Titanic Museum Attraction – Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, USA
- Maritime Museum – Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
- Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition – Orlando, Florida, USA
- Fairview Lawn Cemetery – Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
- Titanic Museum – Indian Orchard, Massachusetts, USA
Titanic Museum – Belfast, Northern Ireland
The Titanic Museum in Belfast is the world’s largest Titanic visitor experience. The exhibition is well laid out and covers six floors over nine interactive galleries. The exhibition uses special effects, dark rides, full-scale reconstructions and interactive features. Visitors explore the shipyard, dive to the sea bed and uncover the true story, and legends, of the Titanic in the city where the ship was “born and raised”. This Titanic Museum is famous for its authenticity.
There’s plenty of things to do in Belfast, but this is a real highlight.
Titanic Experience and Heritage Center – Cobh, Ireland
The town of Cobh in County Cork in Ireland was the Titanic’s last stop before setting sail for America on 11th April 1912.
On a guided tour, you’ll explore several exhibition rooms that commemorate the passengers who boarded the Titanic at its last port of call. You’ll also see the original harbour front and departure point. This is where the passengers waited to board small boats called tenders to take them to the ship, which dropped anchor just behind Spike Island.
The Artifact Exhibition – Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
The Luxor Resort in Las Vegas is home to the Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition. More than 25 million people have visited the exhibit, which features Titanic wreckage brought up from the ocean floor. The stunning Las Vegas exhibition has numerous galleries and interactive exhibits. It makes a change from other usual Vegas activities!
There are spectacular reproductions and more than 250 authentic artefacts recovered from the wreck site of the Titanic. You’ll hear intimate stories about the ship’s passengers and crew as you walk through authentically replicated rooms with furnishings by original manufacturers. It’s easy to see why this Titanic museum is so popular.
SeaCity Museum – Southampton, England
The Titanic set sail on its maiden voyage from Southampton. The tragedy hit this city hard. In fact, more than 500 households here lost a family member. Visitors to this museum can admire a 1:25 scale, interactive model of the Titanic. This shows the intricate layout of the ship and learn all about the workers and the jobs they had onboard. This museum also houses over 4,000 artefacts recovered from the wreckage site.
In the Disaster Room, powerful oral testimony from the survivors retells the sequence of events leading up to the ship’s sinking and the rescue of passengers. It’s a must-visit if you’re in the region.
Titanic Museum Attraction – Branson, Missouri, USA
John Joslyn owns the Titanic Museum Attraction in Branson, Missouri. John co-led a $6 million expedition to the site of the Titanic shipwreck site. The expedition dove to the site 32 times and took hundreds of photos. The Brandon Titanic Museum is a two-story replica of the ship which features a $1 million replica of the grand staircase, replica cabins and an 18-foot scale model of the vessel. You’ll feel like you’re actually there.
You can also walk on a sloping deck imitating the sinking ship, admire artefacts and hear survivor stories. This is worth the visit. There’s so much to explore here that you can spend a whole afternoon.
Titanic Museum Attraction – Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, USA
You’ll find Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee just 10 minutes from the town of Gatlinburg. Also known as the Titanic Museum Gatlinburg, it is one of two Titanic-themed museums owned by John Joslyn. The other one is in Branson, Missouri. Why not visit both?
The museum is a two-story, half-scale replica of the RMS Titanic. It houses a large number of artefacts recovered from the Titanic wreckage. There’s also a large collection of photos and plenty of information on the history and construction of the ship. Exhibits include a replica grand staircase, samples of the decks, replica lifeboats and interactive displays. Interested in the life and death of the Titanic? This is the place for you.
Maritime Museum – Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
RMS Carpathia was the ship that responded to the Titanic’s distress call and rescued 705 people in lifeboats. It set sail from Halifax in Nova Scotia, where you’ll find the Maritime Museum, the oldest maritime museum in Canada. Inside, is a large collection of artefacts from the Titanic including a perfectly preserved deckchair and large pieces of oak carvings. In fact, the museum is famous for having the world’s finest collection of wooden artefacts from the Titanic. Make sure to add this to your list of things to do in Nova Scotia!
Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition – Orlando, Florida, USA
Step back in time to April 1912 on a visit to Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition in Orlando. In this museum, you’ll see more than 300 artefacts across 17 galleries. It has so much to see! There are full-scale room recreations including the Grand Staircase, First Class Cabin, Verandah Café, and more. Plus, costumed actors bring the history of the Titanic and its passengers and crew alive. You’ll hear the stories of notables such as Captain Smith and Molly Brown.
As you walk the Promenade Deck, you feel the chill of the cold Atlantic air as you gaze at the stars. It is a remarkable experience. The museum also hosts first-class passenger dinner parties so you can experience what dining was like onboard. A must-see.
Fairview Lawn Cemetery – Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Fairview Lawn Cemetery holds the remains of 121 victims of the Titanic disaster. The grey, granite markers create the shape of a ship’s hull. The area is a popular spot and it is marked and easy to find. Nearly one-third of the victims have never been identified.
In 2002, forensics identified the remains of “The Unknown Child” as 19-month-old Sidney Leslie Goodwin from England. The crew of the CS Mackay-Bennett pulled the toddler from the water and paid for his funeral. ‘Erected to the memory of an unknown child whose remains were recovered after the disaster of the “Titanic” April 15th 1912’ is carved on his gravestone.
Now, you will also see at the base of the stone a laminated photo of a baby boy and a stone with the name Sidney Leslie Goodwin, Sept. 9, 1910 – Apr. 15, 1912. It’s eery, but this will stay with you.
Titanic Museum – Indian Orchard, Massachusetts, USA
Established in 1963, the Titanic Historical Society of Indian Orchard, Massachusetts was the first of its kind in America.
The Titanic Historical Society created a small museum to show off its collection. There’s lots to see here. Items on display include the life vest worn by Mrs Astor, models of the ship and its rudder and propellers, and personal objects like clothing, coins, and letters.
This museum is a tribute to the ill-fated liner. Here, the rare artefacts tell the stories of the passengers and crew. A collection highlight is the letters and postcards written onboard. This includes those by Selena R Cook, Edwina Troutt, Mrs Frank Goldsmith and George Thorne (Rosenshine). You can easily spend a few hours at this excellent museum.
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