Bodies of water are frequently used as metaphors in poetry, due to their unfathomable depths, unknowable sprawl, and unattainable porpoises. Set sail into the enigma with today's Groupon: for $25, you get a Land and Sea pass plus your choice of a Pioneer schooner sail or W.O. Decker tugboat mini-cruise (a $50 total value) at the South Street Seaport Museum on the East River. This Groupon expires on September 30, 2010.
The South Street Seaport Museum is America's National Maritime Museum, as designated by Congress in 1998. More than 30,000 square feet of exhibition space provide a place to observe the history of New York City as a global port for trade, labor, and human culture. The Land and Sea pass gives you a chance to gander at the museum's permanent collection of paintings, scrimshaw, and ocean-liner memorabilia, as well as visit rotating exhibits, such as FDR's naval and maritime collection. Home to a huge fleet of privately maintained historic seafaring vessels, you'll get to feel, and if you so choose, smell like your choice of merchant mariner or pirate while gazing at the cargo ships and working vessels that once filled New York Harbor in the 19th and early 20th centuries.
The second half of today's deal gives you even greater access to your choice of two historic vessels. Sail aboard the Pioneer, a schooner originally built in 1885. The Pioneer's wrought-iron hull was highly unusual in the 19th century and makes her the only iron-hulled American merchant sailing vessel still in existence that isn't capable of space travel. Carted along by the unseen current of the four zephyrs, you'll spend two hours sailing the harbor and eyeballing the city from a watery perspective. Alternately, a mini-cruise aboard the wooden tugboat W.O. Decker will have you feeling like a proto-famous cartoon mouse in no time. Cruises depart Thursday through Sunday and last an hour and a half; the 1930-born vessel is used to explore New York's working waterfront while you don a boater hat and loudly sing "Puttin' on the Ritz" from the low-lying deck. Check the schedule for sailing and cruising availability.
South Street Seaport Museum was featured by New York magazine and is rated a Frommer's Exceptional, the site's highest rating. Citysearchers give the museum a four-star average, and TripAdvisors give it a 3.5-owl-eye average rating:
- There's a good amount of history to be discovered here, most of it around the South Street Seaport Museum, a fitting tribute to the sea commerce that once thrived here. – Frommer's
- If you love model ships and are curious about the Normandy then this museum will be to your liking. – friantfoodsnob, TripAdvisor
South Street Seaport Museum
New York City has her bustling waterways to thank for a rich history of art, industry, and cultural development—perhaps more than any other factor. The sea carried in a stream of tens of millions of immigrants and fueled the industrial age in one of the country’s most accessible portals to the world. South Street Seaport Museum’s massive gallery space in Schermerhorn Row Block pays tribute to a bygone age while bridging it to the city’s modern aquatic-shipping and transport industry. Some exhibits illuminate the past, such as the pseudo-marketplace at Coffee, Fish, and the Tattooed Man and the immaculately preserved hotel at Remains of the Stay, while others highlight modern issues such as the Occupy Wall Street movement.
Weighted with history, the museum’s fleet of tugboats, schooners, and sloops stays stalwartly afloat, each with its own story to tell; built in 1885, the Wavertree was one of the last wrought-iron sailing ships commissioned, and the Pioneer has spent more than 120 years feeding the economy with boatloads of lumber, stone, brick, oyster shells, and tourists. The majestic four-masted bark Peking represents the famous German Flying P-Liners, designed to be crewed entirely by birds.
12 Fulton St.
New York, New York 10038Get Directions