Discover stories behind the latest exhibitions, fascinating explorations into maritime science and archaeology, and the surprising details of what happens inside (and outside) a modern working museum.

One of the Las Balsas rafts at sea, with the other two rafts in the background, 1973. Photograph by John Carnemolla. Image reproduced courtesy Ballina Naval & Maritime Museum

Las Balsas: The world's longest raft journey

16 Jul 2020

Twelve men, seven nationalities, three rafts, six months and one epic 14,000-kilometre trans-Pacific voyage. Curator Kim Tao interviews Luis Guevara from the 1973 Las Balsas expedition, which completed a record-breaking crossing of the Pacific Ocean from Ecuador to Australia on three balsa-wood rafts.

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Kieran Hosty at Boot Reef in December 2018. Image Julia Sumerling/Silentworld Foundation

Ask an Archaeologist Day

15 Jul 2020

Today is Ask an Archaeologist Day so we had the museum's maritime archeologists, James Hunter and Kieran Hosty answer your burning questions. 

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Entry to the Kupe to Cook exhibition at the Australian National Maritime Museum

Who was Kupe?

08 Jul 2020

According to many Māori iwi (tribes), Kupe was the first Polynesian to arrive in Aotearoa (New Zealand) over 1,000 years ago. While stories differ from region to region, we explore the tradition and the anchor stone that is featured in our current exhibition, Here: Kupe to Cook

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Under Southern Skies exhibition entry

Long way from the River

10 Jun 2020

A 13-metre-long dugout canoe suspended from the ceiling forms the centrepiece in our new permanent gallery, Under Southern Skies. Curators Helen Anu and Dr Stephen Gapps explore how this unique canoe from the Sepik River in Papua New Guinea came to be part of the museum's collection.

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Photojournalist Justin Gilligan standing in front of his photograph, Colliding Views

Q&A with WPY finalist Justin Gilligan

22 May 2020

As a finalist in the 55th Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition, we caught up with photojournalist Justin Gilligan to find out more about his love for the ocean, photography and what it means to have his work selected and displayed in one of the world's most prestigious photography competitions.

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Arthur Pringle as a lieutenant in 1899. Image courtesy of Eliots of Port Eliot

'Ever your loving son': Arthur Pringle and his letters home

21 May 2020

Arthur Pringle as a 13-year old boy wrote to home to his mother while training for the Royal Navy on HMS Britannia.  The letters, in true teenage style, are hardly full of information, but they tell enough to show this young boy was keen to impress his parents back at home.

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