After some years of operation the Shipping Museum can be considered to have been an effective instrument for the conservation, investigation and publicising of the Basque maritime heritage. We believe that some degree of satisfaction in the work done is justified, but only one stage of the process has been completed so far. The structural and spatial l constraints affecting the use of the old, much loved Merchants’ Guild tower house as a museum mean that is necessary to consider a move to bigger facilities where there is room for a bigger budget, more collections, more staff and more technology to provide a maritime museum of the standard that the Basque Country requires.
In view of the obvious limitations of the building earmarked to house the Museum, those of us responsible for the project suggested as early as 1991 that a maritime museum might be created in Pasaia. Support for this idea grew over the years, until the Provincial Council of Gipuzkoa commissioned a draft project from the management team at the Shipping Museum (employees of the company Airu Z.K.). The resulting proposal was submitted in 2006.
he heritage objects collected over the years by the Shipping Museum in San Sebastián and the wide range of display and exhibition resources offered by new technologies make it possible to think in terms of a museum that is worthy of the maritime history and culture of the Basque country, and capable of reaching out to a broad, varied audience. It would feature a number of vessels on the water, some of which could be used by visitors on cultural routes and for recreational and sports trips. The port area itself and the waterfront districts of the Bay of Pasajes would be given heritage status and integrated into the museum ambience.
The draft project proposed a permanent exhibition that would provide an overview of the maritime history of the Basque Country, branching off into anthropological and cultural features. But the museum would not be just a venue for remembering the past and conserving our heritage: it would also strive to establish connections between the past and the present, and so far as possible to ask questions about the future. Traditional seafaring trades – with all their greatness and all their poverty – would take centre stage at the Pasaia Museum, but there would also be room to consider present-day problems and uncertainties, to examine traditional techniques that deserve to survive alongside innovative marine industries based always on sustainability, environmental friendliness and the conservation of marine resources.
Tuesday to Saturday:
10:00 - 14:00 and 16:00 - 19:00
Sundays and public holidays:
11:00 - 14:00
December 24 and 31:
10:00 - 14:00
Closed on Mondays. Closed January 1, 6 and 20, and December 25.
Ticket prices, groups, how to arrive...