Galata Museum of the Sea

All you need to know to visit this innovative maritime museum.

Galata Museo del Mare

Galata Museo del Mare, with its 12,000 square meters of exhibition space, is a museum for everyone and allows you to take a journey into the extraordinary history of the relationship between man and the sea.

This large and innovative museum was inaugurated when Genoa was the European capital of culture, in 2004.

The route allows you to visit 30 exhibition halls on 5 floors. During the visit you will see 4,300 pieces and 75 multimedia stations on display.

The highlight of this museum is the visit of the Nazario Sauro submarine moored right outside the museum.

What to see at the Galata Museo del Mare

Galata Museo del Mare

The path inside the Galata museum of the sea is studied in chronological order, going up from the ground floor and up to the fourth floor.

Through the path through the rooms you can explore many issues related to life on the sea in a very realistic way.

The Maritime Republic of Genoa in its heyday, the figure of the legendary Christopher Columbus with many relics such as maps and globes, the tales of sea monsters in different cultures, the greatest shipwrecks in history, emigration by sea, the disaster of the ocean liner Andrea Doria and many other themes.

The museum boasts several highlights

  • 6 full-size reconstructions of historic boats
  • the second existing copy of the Code of Privileges of Christopher Columbus
  • 2 precious globes from the 1600s
  • 10 historical atlases that can be geolocated today
  • 8 nautical charts from 1500
  • 100 Yacht Portraits from the Beppe Croce collection
  • 66 paintings from the Paolo Clerici Foundation
  • a model of the Darsena from 1600

But here’s how the visit itinerary is structured:

Ground floor

On the ground floor you can admire the rooms of the ancient Maritime Republic of Genoa and of Cristoforo Colombo, where precious relics concerning him are kept.

You will then visit the armory of the dock where a faithful reconstruction of one of the Genoese galleys of the 1600s, 40 meters long, awaits you. You can also get on it and identify with the crew.

First floor

On the first floor you will see the deck of the galley and the so-called “carriage” where the important passengers stayed. The exhibition continues with precious globes and ancient atlases.

An interactive panel will show you the scene of the landing of the silver bars in a faithful reproduction of a typical day of the 1600s.

But the highlight of the first floor is the room of sea monsters, where you can relive the scariest legends that were told about the seas.

Second floor

On the second floor you will see the real raft where Mauro Mancini and Ambrogio Fogar remained at the mercy of the waves for 74 days. Here you will also face a 4D storm aboard a lifeboat.

You will then go and have a look in the nautical room and you will be able to board a brig-schooner. The second floor ends with a beautiful hall of a late 19th century yacht club.

Third floor

The third floor is dedicated to the era of ocean liners and Italian emigration. Here, in fact, you will be just Italian emigrants. In this way you will know the story of our ancestors who left for distant worlds. You will admire reconstructions, photographs, films and interactive stations.

At the end of the third floor you will be prepared to descend into the submarine from the Nazario Sauro submariners school.

Mirador terrace

The ramps leading up to the Mirador terrace, the museum’s panoramic terrace, are set up to illustrate the history of the Andrea Doria turboship. Its construction, its history and of course its incredible shipwreck.

On the Mirador terrace you can enjoy a wonderful view of the historic center of Genoa and the port.

Galata Open Air Museum

Galata Museo del Mare

The last part of the sea museum is called “Galata Open Air Museum”.

This open-air museum tells the story of shipyards and commercial activities that took place right here, in the port of Genoa. You will walk among information panels with vintage photos and interesting descriptions, elements of industrial archeology such as cranes, platforms and railway tracks.

But the real highlight of this part of the museum and of the whole Galata is the S518 Nazario Sauro submarine, moored in the water and completely open to visitors.

This marvelous 63.8 meter long submarine could reach a depth of 300 meters and had a range of over 5,000 miles, with 51 crew members on board.

Opening time

Galata Museo del Mare is open every day of the year, but the opening hours depend on the season.

Generally, Galata is open from morning to evening.

The entrance ticket entitles you to a limited time inside the museum. The tour usually takes about two hours. The visit of the submarine lasts 20/25 minutes. Once out, it is not allowed to re-enter.

Entrance tickets


Galata Museum of the Sea

starting from 17.00 €

More information

You can choose from different types of tickets according to the facilities you wish to visit:

  • Ticket only Galata Museo del Mare. Includes submarine pre-show;
  • Galata Museo del Mare ticket (with pre-show) + Submarine S518 Nazario Sauro;
  • GalatAcquarium ticket: Galata Museo del Mare, Submarine S518 Nazario Sauro, Genoa Aquarium;
  • AquariumVillage ticket: this is the most comprehensive ticket. Allows access to all Costa Edutainment facilities in Genoa’s Old Port: Aquarium, Tropical Garden “Un battito d’ali,” Galata Museo del Mare, Submarine S518 Nazario Sauro, Biosphere, Bigo Panoramic Lift, Dialogue in the Dark.

If you want to visit multiple marine-themed attractions, keep in mind that it is cheaper to buy combined tickets than individual tickets for each attraction.

Combination tickets allow one admission to each attraction and are valid for one year; museum admission must be booked online at the time of purchase.

Each type of attraction offers discounts for children ages 4 to 12, disabled, and residents of Genoa and province. Children under the age of 4 and companions of people with disabilities enter free of charge.

The best way to buy tickets is definitely online-it is the only way to be sure to get in without queuing and to save some money.

How to get to the Galata Museo del Mare


Genoa is very easy to reach, both by train and by car, from any direction you arrive. Once you arrive at the train station or at the motorway exit, everything is very simple.

Galata Museo del Mare is located in the Porto Antico and depending on your means of transport here is the way:

Train : get off at Genova Piazza Principe station and walk for 15 minutes following the signs for Porto Antico.

Car : take the Genova Ovest exit from the highway and follow the indications to the center. Do not take the flyover, Via Gramsci below it is much more comfortable. Keep the port area on the right for about 3 km until you reach the ancient port and then the Galata Museo del Mare.

Airplane : The nearest airport is Genoa Cristoforo Colombo. Once you have landed you can take a taxi (15 minutes) or the shuttle (30 minutes).

Boat: you can also reach the museum by sea with boats that leave from the main tourist resorts of the Eastern Riviera (Nervi, Recco, Camogli, San Fruttuoso, Portofino, Cinque Terre). Some routes are active 365 days a year, some only during the summer season.

Parking at the Galata Museo del Mare

Parking around Galata is quite easy if you opt for paid parking.

If you are looking for free parking, the undertaking is much more complicated.

In the area of the ancient port there are many paid parking lots and in any case the parking lots in Genoa are not particularly expensive in general.

Here is the list of recommended car parks:

  • Park Acquario (1 minute walk)
  • Park Mercanzia (1 minute walk)
  • Park Porta Siberia (1 minute walk)
  • Park Autosilo (8 minutes on foot)
  • Park Calata Gadda (8 minutes on foot)
  • Park Genova Piazza Principe (5 minutes on foot)

Hotel near Galata Museo del Mare

There are several quality accommodation facilities in the old port and Galata area.

Below we propose some really recommended, otherwise by scrolling again you can do a search on the map and find the structure that is right for you.

NH Collection Genova Marina

Genoa – Molo Ponte Calvi 5


San Giorgio Rooms

Genoa – Piazza della Raibetta 2


Hotel De Ville

Genoa – Via di Sottoripa 5


Discover the best Hotels, B & Bs and Apartments in Liguria based on thousands of verified reviews.