Guided tours

caption:A volunteer guide shows museum visitors around HMAS <em>Vampire</em>.

Is there anything our volunteer guides don't know? Perhaps - but what they can tell you is amazing! Benefit from their 'insider knowledge' when you take one of our highly recommended guided tours.

Some tours do not operate daily. Please phone +61 2 9298 3777 on the morning of your visit to check tour times and availability.

Opening hours

Every day 9.30 am - 5.00 pm (6.00 pm in January)
Closed 25 December (Christmas Day)

Guided tours

Tour  Description 
Galleries   Relive Australia's maritime heritage and culture on a tour of the museum galleries. When you arrive, check the interactive touch screens in the foyer for tour times, information and directions. Cost: Included in all museum tickets. 
A lovers' tour  Take this self-guided tour of the museum to discover stories of love throughout history. Download the tour before your visit or pick up a tour at the ticket desk on Valentine's Day. 
Small historic vessels  View the museum's fleet of small historic vessels afloat at North Wharf. This is a self-guided tour, using a printed brochure and map available at the museum foyer ticket desk. Cost: Included in all museum tickets. 
Cape Bowling Green lighthouse  Join our knowledgeable guide and climb to the top of Cape Bowling Green lighthouse, built in 1874. The lighthouse is open at selected times throughout the day. Cost: Included in The Big ticket
HMB Endeavour replica (when in port)  Explore the historic replica of Captain Cook's Endeavour with a self-guided tour using an information brochure and map. Volunteer guides are stationed at strategic points to help reveal the story of Cook's ship and voyage. Cost: Included in The Big ticket
HMAS Vampire  Why is the ship called Vampire? You'll have to take the guided tour of this fascinating ship to find out! Imagine life onboard, view the crucial workings of the ship, then experience Action Stations in 'A' Gun Bay and listen to former Vampire sailors' recordings of their experiences at sea. Cost: Included in The Big ticket.  A self-guided audio tour is also available from the ticket booth located near HMAS Vampire for $5.00. 
HMAS Onslow  What is 'hot bunking'? You'll have to take the guided tour of this submarine to find out! View the cramped conditions (including a tiny galley capable of serving four meals a day for 64 men) and visit the control room with its two periscopes, the 'eyes' of the vessel. Cost: Included in The Big ticket
Kay Cottee's yacht, Blackmores First Lady  Explore Australia's best-known yacht - Kay Cottee's globe-circling Blackmores First Lady - in this tour, available at selected times through the day. Cost: Included in The Big ticket
Tall ship James Craig  The story of the James Craig's rebirth, the result of an award-winning 30-year restoration, is even more extraordinary than her life before. Discover the story of this 1874 tall ship with a self-guided tour (information brochure and map). Our knowledgeable volunteer guides are on board to answer your questions. Cost: Included in The Big ticket

Health and safety info

Before boarding our vessels, please observe the following health and safety information:

  • All backpacks and large bags must be stored at the museum cloakroom, located in our main foyer.
  • The vessels include confined spaces. Some areas are only 1.5 metres (4 feet 6 inches) high.
  • You will be required to climb and descend ladders on all vessels.
  • High-heeled shoes are not permitted on board any vessels.
  • Access to some of our vessels is limited for people with mobility concerns. Please visit our access guide or phone +61 2 9298 3777 for more information.

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