The Maritime Museum Rotterdam, founded in 1874 by Prince Henry, brother of King William III, is the oldest maritime museum in The Netherlands, based in the largest port of world.
These two facts are contributory to the character of the museum: it has an important and large collection, ranging from the earliest known ship model in European culture, the Mataró caravel, by the armour clad turret-ram museum ship ‘Buffel’, built in 1868, to contemporary maritime art.
Since 1986 the Maritime Museum has been on the Leuvehaven in a striking modern building, thus being the connection between the town centre and the port of Rotterdam.
In a continuous programme large and smaller exhibitions show past and present of international and inland shipping, shipbuilding and the development of the port of Rotterdam. In addition two permanent hands-on exhibitions – ‘World Port Rotterdam’ and ‘Professor Splash’, satisfy the need for using hands and brains on the spot in the digital and real way.