Portland Harbor Museum

South Portland, ME

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Where are we going?

Address: 2 Fort Rd, South Portland, ME 04106, USA How do we get there? Number: 207 799 6337
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About this activity

Founded in 1987, Portland Harbor Museum is an exciting place to explore and celebrate the rich maritime history of Portland Harbor - and there is a LOT of history, so we hope you're ready!

The exhibits at the Portland Harbor Museum offer an opportunity to learn all about the role that the harbor played in shaping Southern Maine's economic, historic and social character.

Even before you walk in the doors you can start to discover its history, given that the museum itself resides in a historic building right on the waterfront, just a few yards from Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse.

The collections with the Portland Harbor Museum feature a number of artifacts and documents that are relevant to Casco Bay's ongoing maritime culture, from photographs, to artifacts from the South Portland Shipyards that produced those famous Liberty Ships during WWII.

You can also see a host of other items that related to the early settlement by Europeans in the area.

Within the exhibits, you can see a large section of the ONLY surviving American clipper ship called Snow Squall within the 19th century wooden shipbuilding section.

In addition to the permanent exhibits, it's fascinating to understand about the grounds that the museum sits on - Fort Preble. Constructed back in 1808 and active right through to 1950, kids can learn how may of the coast artillery gun emplacements are still visible, as are the granite Civil War casemates.

There is even a 17th century Old Settlers Cemetery accessible from the walkway.

A fascinating day of history in Portland!

Activity location


From the Maine Turnpike (I-95)
Exit from I-95 onto I-295 (I-95 Exit 44 from the south and I-95 Exit 52 from the north). Take I-295 Exit 6A (Forest Avenue South). After exiting, follow the signs to Route 77, which becomes State Street. From this point, follow the directions from Downtown Portland (below).

From Downtown Portland
Take State Street (it's one way) and go over the Casco Bay Bridge. At the traffic signal at the end of the bridge, proceed straight onto Broadway. (Broadway also goes to the right, but straight will take you to the museum.) Continue on Broadway until it ends at Spring Point Marina (approximately 1.5 miles). Turn right at the stop sign onto Benjamin Pickett Street and turn left at the next stop sign (Fort Road). Follow Fort Road through the SMCC Campus until it ends at the water. The museum is on your right.

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How much does it cost?






Free for children


Last Updates


Portland Harbor Museum FAQ’s

Grab something to eat in the area, there are plenty of options!

Make sure you spend time to explore the area around the museum, there are so many fascinating things to do with the family!

Head to the gift shop and pick up some great gifts and souvenirs including books, kids books, DVDs and unique items, many created by regional artists and craftspeople. Open during museum hours, the shop features merchandise that reflects the museum's focus on maritime history and culture.

School Activities Age of the Clipper Ships, the museum's program for fourth-graders, takes students on a voyage to the mid-1800s in Maine. Portland Harbor in the Colonial Days, especially designed for seventh-graders, is an internet-based program that traces the history of the harbor from the 1620s to the American Revolution. Both programs may include field trips to the museum, a visit to your school by museum docents, or both.

Give them a call for any information on accessibility

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