The Forum Marinum is a maritime museum located in a former shipyard which has a collection of about 100 vessels most of them built in south-west Finland. The trust which manages the museum was created in 1998 and the following year it brought about the merger of the existing Turku Maritime Museum and the Åbo Akademi University Museum of Maritime History which dated from 1936.
The Finns were one of the last nations to undertake commercial voyages in large sailing vessels after the Second World War and it is appropriate that the museum has two ‘tall ships’, Suomen Joutsen, so named from 1930, a square-rigged three-masted vessel, built at St Nazaire in France in 1902 which was donated to the city of Turku and opened to the public from 1991 and Sigyn, wooden barque built at Göteborg in 1887 which was first opened to visitors in 1948. The museum collection also includes a tug and a police boat.
The main display is entitled ‘Work at Sea’ and describes many aspects of the history of seafaring in Finland, including ship-building and the manufacture of marine engines. The ships are open to visitors only in the summer months but the exhibitions are open throughout the year.
The Forum Marinum also incorporates the Finnish navy museum which includes four vessels, two gunboats, a minelayer and a motor torpedo boat.