Lonely Planet review
Recently renovated, this museum offers a glimpse of the seaport’s history and a survey of the world’s great ocean liners, with permanent exhibits and various other sites dotted around the 11-block area. Spanning three floors, the museum's new galleries include a battalion of model ships, antique shipping tools, and left-of-center shows covering anything from New York fashion to contemporary photography. The museum's booty also extends to a group of tall-masted sailing ships just south of Pier 17, including the Ambrose and Pioneer . Off-limits for restoration during research, access to their windswept decks and intimate interiors are normally included in the admission to the museum. It was hoped that from spring 2012, the gorgeous, iron-hulled Pioneer, built in 1885 to carry mined sand, is expected to once again offer two-hour sailing journeys through the warmer months; contact the museum for updates.