Scottish Maritime Museum



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Scotland’s influence on the maritime history of the world from the eighteenth century to the modern day has out of all proportion to the size of the country. The two sites operated by the Scottish Maritime Museum contain exhibitions and collections that tell the story of that great maritime tradition. The buildings themselves are important parts of that story, and they are complemented by a collection of vessels that represent 150 years of the working vessels of Scotland. The Scottish Maritime Museum’s Irvine site is their administrative centre and largest site. The Linthouse Engine Shop, built in 1882, holds a substantial part of the museum’s collections in open store. The shipyard worker’s tenement flat and historic vessels moored at pontoons in the harbour can be visited during guided tours.

Scottish Maritime Museum
Harbourside,IRVINE,KA12 8QE


  • Suitable for children of all ages
  • Parking onsite
  • Parking nearby
  • Cafe
  • Accessible toilets
Opening times
  • Opening Times: Open daily, 10-5. Closed 25-26 Dec and 1-2 Jan

About the area

Discover North Ayrshire

North Ayrshire clings to Scotland’s west coast and reaches out into the Firth of Clyde, claiming Arran as its own. Often described as ‘Scotland in miniature’, the scenic island of Arran, caught between the Ayrshire coast and the Kintyre Peninsula, has been a popular holiday resort for generations of Clydesiders, with excellent opportunities for outdoor activities around the island.

The Highland Boundary Fault runs through the island, and while the mountain of Goatfell dominates the skyline to the north, the south is much more level. The granite northern peaks are home to red deer, unique vegetation and raptors, while the narrow coastal plain has typically Hebridean raised beaches, on which tiny clachan (hamlet) settlements have developed, many now in ruins after the infamous Highland Clearances of the 19th century.

Back on the mainland, North Ayrshire takes in the towns of Irvine, Kilwinning, Largs and the ‘Three Towns’ – Ardrossan, Saltcoats and Stevenson. The area’s long sandy beaches and historic attractions make it an ideal destination to escape to from Scotland’s cities.

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