Vasa Museum

Vasa Museum (Stockholm, Sweden)

On August 10, 1628, the Swedish warship The Vasa sank on its maiden voyage, killing 30-50 of the 150 sailors on board. The ship sank to its resting spot in the mud at the bottom of the Baltic Sea where it remained until it was discovered in 1956. The ship was miraculously intact, having been preserved by the mud and cold water, and was raised in 1961. (Archaeologists found the skeletons of 25 sailors during the salvage operation.) And you can see the Vasa today, in all its majestic glory, at the Vasa Museum. Paul gives it rave reviews: “If you’re ever in Stockholm, you MUST stop in at the Vasa Museum! After the ship sank, it lodged in the mud at the bottom of the harbor… and the mud somehow preserved it for hundreds of years. It’s been dug up now, and it is simply breathtaking. I don’t really know how to describe it, or why it’s so awesome, but it might very well be the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen.”

The Mary Rose

The Mary Rose (Portsmouth, England)

Riley suggested a trip to visit the Mary Rose – “Henry the Eighth’s overblown, top heavy ship (perhaps modelled on himself) which sank soon after launch and has since been raised”. (In all fairness, the Mary Rose sank 34 years after launch, which isn’t that soon.) The morbid aspect of the ship is that when it sank in 1545 it took several hundred of its crew with it. And lots of fascinating artifacts have been recovered from it, including syringes and bleeding bowls and other morbid little tidbits.