Tall Ship Experiences

Tall Ship Tours

Tall Ship Experiences | Visit Historic Vessels

The South Street Seaport Museum tells the story of how New York’s great natural harbor gave rise to the metropolis we know today: the story of the ships, the people who sailed them, the cargoes they carried, and the businesses that served them. Students experience all this and more, without ever leaving the dock.

See below for available programs.

Book your program today!


Explorers, Crew and Cargo: Tall Ships Activities
90 minutes | Grades K-12 | $175

Board the cargo ship Wavertree at Pier 16 and experience the world of transatlantic sailors through hands-on activities.

  • Tour the ship from bow to stern
  • Haul on ropes to raise sail without leaving the dock, and walk the capstan ’round
  • Learn how sailors and officers slept, ate, worked, and played
  • Learn about the importance of ships, cargo, and commerce from the time of the European explorers until today

    Lightship Ahoy! Ship Tour and Activities
    90 minutes | Grades K-12 | $250

    Board the lightship Ambrose at Pier 16 and feel what it was like to work at sea on a navigational vessel.

  • Tour the ship: see how sailors worked and lived
  • Experiment with anchors to learn how a ship stays in one place, and use pulleys to learn how sailors raise heavy loads
  • Learn how to navigate with charts and compasses, and learn the role of lightships in navigation
  • Lights, horns, radios… learn how sailors communicate at sea. Ring the bell!

    Haul Away: Simple Machines on Tall Ships
    90 minutes | Grades 3-12 | $175-$250*

    What makes a ship sail? Wind, muscle, and the mechanical advantage sailors get when they use pulleys, levers, and other simple machines. Climb aboard Wavertree and learn the physics and math behind a sailor’s tools.

  • Experiment with different pulley rigs to discover mechanical advantage
  • Find out how the rudder, the ship’s wheel, and the capstan all use math and physics to help sailors do big jobs
  • Working together with your classmates, use these simple machines to raise sails and and try a tug-o’-war
    *Higher price for some programs applies to groups with more than 26 students

    About Our Dockside Vessels

    Wavertree was built in 1885 and operated for many years as a cargo ship sailing around the world

    The lightship Ambrose was built in 1907 and served as a “floating lighthouse” in lower New York Bay

    All programs are designed for groups of up to 34 students (40 people maximum including chaperones).

    All programs are aligned with New York City and State Social Studies and Science Learning Standards. Programs can be customized to meet your curricular goals and the needs of your students.

    Reservations and advance payment required. Limited scholarships are available.

    To book a program, or for more information please email education@seany.org or call (212)-748-8568


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