Facts about the museum

and the work we do

Borrowing the museum’s books

To borrow the museum’s books and periodicals, please contact the main library in Esbjerg. The available titles are published in the online catalogue, where you can search for material and submit a request to borrow.

With the heart in Esbjerg
we are Denmark's museum of the sea

The Fisheries and Maritime Museum is Denmark's museum of the sea. As the only museum in Denmark, we have both a cultural and scientific approach to our work, which gives us a unique opportunity to tell the whole story of man and the sea.

Based on our knowledge of the sea and its cultures, we want to empower our visitors and partners to make informed choices on behalf of the sea and its animal and plant life. We want to contribute to an increased understanding of the unique cultures and business structures associated with the sea and to a greater knowledge of how maritime life has been of crucial importance to Denmark's development.

With our location in Esbjerg, we want to contribute to strengthening Southwest Jutland as a cultural and tourist destination and give tourists and business partners an insight into the history, life and opportunities as they have been shaped by the proximity to the sea over the centuries.

Our mission

The Fisheries and Maritime Museum is Denmark's museum of the sea. We research, communicate, collect and engage in the relationship between man and the sea. Our special areas of focus are the economic activity that has been linked to the Danish sea from the 16th century to the present day and the nature of the sea with a special focus on the North Sea and the Wadden Sea as well as marine mammals in Danish waters.

Our vision:
We want to set the agenda for making all of Denmark smarter about life in, with and on the sea.

What do you know about

the museum’s history?

The original design for the museum buildings was done by the architects Halldor Gunnløgsson and Jørn Nielsen. With its monolithic red tiled cubes, it stood out as a worthy and natural addition to the dramatic, rugged west coast. When the museum was finished in 1968, it was the town’s gift to itself in celebration of the harbour’s and the town’s centenary.

We are a self-governing institution, founded in 1962. The Fisheries and Maritime Museum/Salt water aquarium were opened to the public in April 1968. The museum was officially designated a cultural history and natural history museum in 1972.

From the beginning, the museum has included an exhibition of the history of fishing, plus a salt water aquarium and various supporting facilities. In 1976 the museum was expanded with the addition of a sealarium (since renovated in 2013), and in 1989 the first steps were taken to establish the open air harbour milieu.

In 1994 the museum established a research department, which, since 2000, has been operated in collaboration with the University of Southern Denmark, since 2016 under the name of the Centre for Maritime and Business History (CME).

Read more about the museum’s history here

The Fisheries and Maritime Museum is a cultural history and natural history museum for:

  • Danish fisheries
  • Danish offshore
  • Danish marine environment
  • Danish marine mammals
  • Shipping in West Jutland
  • The cultural history and natural history of the Wadden Sea

Collaborating partners

As a museum, a research institution and a visitor destination, the Fisheries and Maritime Museum has a wide network of collaborative partnerships within Denmark and abroad. The Fisheries and Maritime Museum also belongs to a number of regional, national and international cooperative organisations.

We value our network relationships highly. Interaction between our employees and our network improves our scientific work.

Good results are easier to achieve together.


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