Tall Ship: James Craig 1874

A Majestic Restoration

The nineteenth century barque James Craig under partial sail in open sea

Climb aboard a fully restored 19th century barque ship.

  • About


    Come aboard the James Craig – a true restoration of a majestic tall ship (not a replica.) It represents the great sailing vessels which moved produce from the emerging colonies and brought manufactured goods to our shores.

    Rescued as a rusting wreck from Tasmania's Recherche Bay, James Craig is hailed as a model of sensitive, authentic conservation and a recognised symbol of heritage preservation. Learn about its full history at the Sydney Heritage Fleet website.

    Interesting facts

    • There are only four 19th century barques left in the world capable of sailing. James Craig is the only one in the Southern Hemisphere and the only one which regularly carries the general public to sea.
    • James Craig hoisted all of its 21 sails for the first time in nearly 80 years in 2001 and sailed through Sydney Heads. The story of its rebirth, the result of an award-winning 30-year restoration, is even more extraordinary than its earlier life.
    • In 2003, it was awarded the World Ship Trusts Maritime Heritage Award for authentic restoration. In this honour it joins a select band of restored ships throughout the world, including the Vasa (Sweden 1627), USS Constitution (USA 1797) and Cutty Sark (UK 1869).

    James Craig is owned by the Sydney Heritage Fleet, a community-based, non-profit organisation dedicated to the preservation of Australia's maritime heritage.

    Wharfside Viewing

    Most days of the year (particularly Monday to Friday), the James Craig stands at our wharves open for admission, but it does enjoy regular weekend harbour sails (see 'Sail the James Craig' below), occasional interstate trips and periodic maintenance. If you'd like to confirm its availability on the day of your visit, please check the Sydney Heritage Fleet website.

    Please note these changes to wharfside availability:

    • Friday 20 July - Friday 3rd August - in dry dock
    • Thursday 9 August - Ship closed for function
    • Saturday 11 August - ship closed for sailing.

    Ticket Information

    Open most days from 10am with last boarding at 3:30pm.

    Buy a Big Ticket when you arrive (see our Admissions page for prices). 

    Our Plan Your Visit page has everything you need to know about a trip to the museum.

    Become a Maritime Museum Member and receive FREE or discounted entry to all our events and exhibitions, as well as many other benefits.

    Visiting Tips

    • Kids must be accompanied by an adult.
    • For safety reasons, children have to be at least 90cm in height to board all vessels.
    • Be prepared to get physical. This vessel involves some climbing, crouching and navigating confined spaces.
    • No high heels. Flat shoes with enclosed toe recommended.
    • Buy a Big Ticket for full access to the museum’s vessels or save money with a Family Membership Pass.

    Sail the James Craig

    Enjoy a glorious day under sail off Sydney Heads including a gourmet box lunch, morning and afternoon tea, and a fully licensed bar on board. 

    James Craig sails most weekends in Sydney (Saturday or Sunday, 9.30am - 4.00pm approximately). 

    For prices and booking information (including gift certificates) please visit Sydney Heritage Fleet or phone them on +61 2 9298 3888.

    Please note: The vessel carries 80 passengers at sea. Unfortunately, children under 12 are not permitted to sail.

    News & Special Offers

    Join our monthly e-newsletter for the latest news including special offers, advance bookings, sneak previews and more.

    Connect with us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for updates and be part of the conversation.

  • Photo Gallery

    Photo Gallery

    Young boy at the wheel of tallship JAMES CRAIGTallship JAMES CRAIGYoung girl onboard tallship JAMES CRAIG
  • School Excursions

    School Excursions

    A group of school children on endeavour

    School Excursions

    We offer a truly unique excursion experience for students and teachers alike.