Texas Maritime Museum

1202 Navigation Circle, Rockport, TX 78382 • (361) 729-1271

Many people haven’t understood the importance in history of the Texas Coast. From the time of the Karankawas, to Spanish and French incursion, to modern times, the Texas Coast has been extremely valuable economically, strategically, and historically. The Texas Maritime Museum’s mission is to excite and educate our visitors about this rich history. Phil Barnes, Curator

Daily Life on Board La Belle

French explorer René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de la Salle, sailed too far southwest and missed his intended destination, the mouth of the Mississippi River. This AAM-accredited museum's exhibits explore the science, art, and mystery of navigation in La Salle’s time, and also offer a unique glimpse into crew members’ lives. Among the items on display are a scale model of La Belle, sailors’ personal belongings, and 17th century navigational instruments.

About the Museum

At the Texas Maritime Museum, discover our state's rich maritime history, from the early days of exploration and settlement by the Spanish and French to the modern search for oil. At the state's official maritime museum, explore the long and varied story along the more than 300 miles of Texas coast. See a large collection of antique outboard motors, a fishing exhibit, and original watercolors of Texas lighthouses by artist Harold Phenix.

Must See

The museum has a large-scale model of Bullwinkle, one of the largest oil-drilling platforms in the world, and a significant collection of books which focus on a variety of maritime topics.

For Kids

Children can visit a recreated ship's bridge and steer a ship's wheel. Bring the whole family out for Family Discovery Days, held every other month on the last Saturday of the month. Experience more nautical fun along with your museum visit on each Family Discovery Day. At no additional charge, kids can engage in themed craft activities between 10 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. in the Education Center.

Banner image courtesy Texas Historical Commission