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Museums on the LA Waterfront

Did you know there are 10 museums located within a 10-mile radius on the LA Waterfront? This area is rich in both history and culture! Learn more how the development of the Port of Los Angeles helped to shape Los Angeles and ultimately the nation. As Mayor Garcetti once said, "Our city may have been founded on Olvera Street, but it grew in Los Angeles Harbor."


Banning House in WilmingtonThe Banning Museum

401 E. M Street
Wilmington, CA 90744
(310) 548-7777

The Banning Museum is a 19th century mansion that sits on a grand 20-acre property originally owned by Phineas Banning, "Father of the Los Angeles Harbor." Fashioned after popular Delaware homes of the era, the Banning Residence combines exquisite ancient Greek Revival design elements with much sought-after Victorian furnishings. Complete with antique coaches and carriages and modern-day picnic tables and tennis courts, the Banning estate has something for everyone. The Banning Museum is open Tuesday through Sunday and the museum shop is open during public tour hours. Admission is free with a suggested donation of $5 for adults and $1 for children.


Battleship IOWA in San PedroBattleship IOWA

250 N. Harbor Blvd.
San Pedro, CA 90731
(310) 519-9545

Commissioned in 1943, the namesake of the Iowa class of battleships took part in every major military conflict from World War II until the post-Cold War period when it was decommissioned in 1990. Nicknamed "The Big Stick," the 887-foot long vessel hosted more U.S. presidents than any other battleship and boast a presidential bathtub. This historic vessel is now a floating museum operated by the Pacific Battleship Center. Battleship IOWA is open daily from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. General admission tickets are $19.95 and $17.95 when you buy online.


Cabrillo Marine Aquarium

Cabrillo Marine Aquarium in San Pedro 3720 Stephen M White Drive
San Pedro, CA 90731
(310) 548-7562; TDD (310) 548-2052

Cabrillo Marine Aquarium is an educational and recreational facility promoting knowledge and understanding of marine life in Southern California. Tours, classes, hands-on learning, grunion runs, and whale watching tours are part of the adventure. Nearby exploratory experiences include the Point Fermin Marine Life Refuge tidepools, salt marsh, fishing pier and Cabrillo Beach — all within walking distance. Cabrillo Marine Aquarium is open Tuesday through Friday, from 12 to 5 p.m., and on weekends, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. On-site parking is $1/hour, with a maximum of $9. Admission is free with a suggested donation of $5 for adults and $1 for children.


Drum Barracks Civil War Museum in WilmingtonDrum Barracks Civil War Museum

1052 Banning Boulevard
Wilmington, CA 90744
(310) 548-7509

Learn how California played a part in the Civil War. The Drum Barracks served as the Union Army headquarters in the Southwest territory from 1861 to 1871. The museum is housed in the last remaining wooden building built during the Civil War to be used as Officers’ Quarters — the only intact U.S. Army Civil War-era building in Southern California. Tours of the Drum Barracks are conducted every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday at 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. and every Saturday and Sunday at 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. Admission is free with a suggested donation of $5 for adults.


Fort MacArthur Museum in San PedroFort MacArthur Museum

3601 S. Gaffey Street
San Pedro, CA 90731
(310) 548-2631

The Fort MacArthur Museum is dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of the history of Fort MacArthur, a U.S. Army post, which guarded the Los Angeles harbor from 1914 to 1974. The Museum was established in 1985, and it is housed in the corridors and galleries of historic Battery Osgood-Farley. The Fort MacArthur Reservations hold an important collection of historical structures that were part of the U.S. Army's role in the defense of the American continental coastline from invasion. These structures clearly trace the development of American coastal defenses, from the all big gun era of the turn of the century to the missile era of today. Ft. MacArthur is open on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, from noon to 5 p.m. (Please contact the museum directly for holiday schedules). Admission is free with a suggested donation of $5 for adults and $3 children.


Los Angeles Harbor Fire Museum in San PedroLos Angeles Harbor Fire Museum and Memorial

639 S. Harbor Blvd.
San Pedro, CA 90731
(323) 464-2727

Experience San Pedro and Wilmington’s fire protection & rescue service history with vintage fire apparatus and various displays of equipment, tools, photos, memorabilia and documents. Learn about the project to restore Old LAFD Fireboat #2, “The Ralph J. Scott”, an icon of the harbor for 78 years and a National Historic Landmark. Our docents will take you on a tour of the museum located in Old Fire Station 36. Los Angeles Harbor Fire Museum is open on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission is free but donations are gladly accepted.


Los Angeles Maritime Museum in San PedroLos Angeles Maritime Museum

Berth 84 (at 6th Street and Harbor Boulevard)
San Pedro, CA 90731
(310) 548-7618

Explore Southern California's nautical heritage tracing the growth of the Los Angeles Harbor from a tidal mudflat to one of the world's busiest seaports at the Los Angeles Maritime Museum. The museum is housed in the former San Pedro Municipal Ferry Building, which ceased operation in 1963, coinciding with the construction of the Vincent Thomas Bridge. One of the largest maritime museums in California, it boasts 75,000 square feet and features more than 200 ship and boat models, a variety of navigational equipment and an operating amateur radio station. Historical references cover the fishing industry, tall ships, commercial shipping, U.S. Navy, Merchant Marine and recreational sailing. The Maritime Museum is open Tuesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free with a suggested donation of $5 for adults and $3 for seniors. Children are free.


Muller House in San PedroMuller House

1542 S Beacon Street
San Pedro, CA 90731
(310) 831-1788

In 1899, Edward Mahar built a home at 129 Front Street for his parents who resided in Wilmington. They chose not to move to the new home. Shipbuilder William Muller then purchased the home in 1901 for his growing family. In 1912, Front Street was bulldozed and widened to become Harbor Boulevard. At this time Muller’s house was relocated by mule and wagon to 19th Street and Grand Avenue. Over time, upgrades were made to keep up with early 20th-century modernizations.With the support of the Historical Society, the house was declared Cultural Heritage Monument No. 254 in 1982. It remained at 19th and Grand until 1986 when it was donated to the San Pedro Bay Historical Society for use as a museum. Moved once more, it was renovated by the Society and opened to the public in the fall of 1990. The house now sits on a bluff overlooking San Pedro Bay on land leased from the City of Los Angeles and maintained by the Society. The museum offers guided tours, monthly exhibits, discussions of historical interest and special events. The Muller House is open on the first and second Sunday of the month, from 1-4 p.m. Admission is free with a suggested donation of $3 per person.


Point Fermin Lighthouse in San PedroPoint Fermin Lighthouse

807 W. Paseo Del Mar
San Pedro, CA 90731
(310) 241-0684

The Point Fermin Lighthouse sits on the southernmost tip of Los Angeles. Built in 1874, the Victorian-style lighthouse is banked upon a 100-foot cliff above the Pacific Ocean. It served as a beacon for the growing Los Angeles harbor until World War II, when the lantern was replaced with a lookout tower. Situated in Point Fermin Park, the lighthouse is a historical reference point within a picturesque ocean setting, offering breathtaking 360-degree views of the rocky coast line, Federal breakwater, Angles Gate Lighthouse, Catalina Island and surrounding Palos Verdes and San Pedro Hills. Pt. Fermin Lighthouse is open to the public Tuesday through Sunday, from 1 to 4 p.m. Admission is free and donations are welcomed.


S.S. Lane Victory Museum and Memorial in San PedroS.S. Lane Victory Merchant Marine Museum and Memorial

3600 Miner Street
San Pedro, CA 90731
(310) 519-9545

Get a true perspective of wartime in the 1940s aboard the fully-operational, restored cargo ship, S.S. Lane Victory. Designated as a national historic landmark, the Lane Victory is the only surviving victory-class ship in the world. She carried arms, supplies and personnel over thousand of miles during World War II. This vessel is a national historic landmark and guided tours are offered throughout the day. Below deck, you can tour the soldiers’ quarters, pick up antique artillery and be part of the action with mock battles and staged air raids. The Lane Victory is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free with a suggested donation of $7 for adults and $3 for children.


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