Even though Australia is considered a continent it’s still an enormous island, so it only makes sense there’s a maritime history as storied as Australia itself. Here at the Queensland Maritime Museum on the banks of the Brisbane River, learn about the thousands of different ships that have wrecked on the Great Barrier Reef, and tour inside the Diamantina—a river frigate from World War II that’s the last remaining boat of its kind found anywhere in the world. Hear the tales of its service in the Pacific and experience the exceptionally cramped living quarters, and sit in the place where Japanese sailors signed surrender documents on board. Back on shore inside the museum, tour the exhibits on marine engines, lighthouses, and nautical equipment, or marvel at the exhibit of Happy II, one of the smallest vessels to every successfully sail across the Pacific. Hobbyists can marvel at a collection over 300 model ships, with styles ranging from modern construction to some of the world’s first sea craft.
Anyone choosing to visit the Diamantina should be comfortable navigating steep stairs and walking through narrow spaces. There are complimentary audio tours, as well as rotating exhibition from naval architects and shipbuilders.