Ahoy maties - are you keen for an adventure that will take you into a "shark of steel"? That's right - you can venture into a real life submarine at the Historic Ship Nautilus!
Located on the Thames River in Groton, the USS Nautilus is the only submarine museums that is operated by the actual US Navy, which also means that all the artifacts, documents and photographs are fascinating and genuine!
With over 33,000 artifacts, 20,000 documents and 30,000 photos for kids to get lost in, they really will come away with an amazing insight into what life would have been like for the men who lived and worked on these structures.
Because there are so many pieces, they can't display them all at once, which means there will always be something new for you to come back to for your next visit!
Kids - as you walk the decks, think about all the stories that could be told from living in such a place. And there is so much history to learn from it! The Historic Ship Nautilus was the first nuclear powered vessel in the world. It was the first ship to go to the North Pole, and it was the first submarine to journey to that classic "20,000 leagues under the sea".
You can really feel the history as you walk the spaces where the dedicated crew ate, slept, worked, and entertained themselves (after all, they would need to on those super long voyages under the water!)
You can check out the Torpedo Room, the Control Room, the Crew's Mess and event the Attack Center - all amazing experience on the Historic Ship Nautilus!
No need to make a reservation! Just head on over. All tours are self-guided with an audio wand.
There are scavenger hunts which the kids can complete as they wander round the submarine!
No food or drink allowed in the museum from the outside, and there is a cafe at the north end of the parking lots. It's open Memorial Day to Labor Day. There are limited vendors onsite.
Healthy Eating You can bring your own lunch, to keep it healthy and easy, as there is a lovely picnic area with a view of the river.
Head for your FREE parking at 1 Crystal Lake Road in Groton. Right on the River Thames, just take exit 86 from I-95 and follow the signs.
If you have groups of 25 or more, then book ahead. It's an amazing place for kids to learn about this important part of US history . There is a classroom on the 2nd floor of the museum.
Save those pennies, there's a gift shop! All items are related to submarine history, so get ready to keep learning!
There are handicapped restrooms as well as an elevator, on the 2nd floor. There might be certain limitations during the tour of the ship itself, so call ahead.
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Strollers aren't allowed on the submarine itself, but the experience is suitable for smaller children if you are okay to carry them or if they can walk for short periods of time.
9am - 5pm Wednesday to Monday. 4pm close Nov 1 to April 30.
Closed Tuesdays, as well as major holidays.
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Historic Ship Nautilus