This large museum is way out on the outskirts of the greater Shanghai metro area near the large artificial Dishui Lake. Fortunately, it is accessible via the city's subway system as the last stop on Line 16, but it'll be a hour long ride through some fairly uninteresting landscape from Shanghai proper. Even when you get to the station, it is another 20 min walk through a fairly mundane commercial district to finally get to the museum with it's distinctive twin sail roof. However, if you are interested in the maritime history of China, it is worth the trip.
Inside the museum there are several galleries covering everything from the basics of ship design (from various bow and stern shapes, props, engines, etc.) through Chinese maritime and naval history. All the items on display have both Chinese and English labels (although the English translations are on occasion somewhat curiously worded). The Hall of Chinese Navigation History on the first floor is perhaps the most interesting gallery as it covers the impact of the ships on the development of Chinese culture, trade, etc. Sadly, the conservation people seem to have won a major battle to keep light levels at the bare minimum to preserve the many fascinating artifacts on display with the result that many are really hard to see. A lot of early Chinese naval history is packed into the last section of this wing - the modern Chinese navy is covered in the Hall of Navy on the second floor through a series of impressive large scale models of various Chinese frigates,guided missile destroyers, etc. There is also a large gallery on what is effectively the Chinese Coast Guard, including its lifesaving/rescue mission, system of lighthouses, etc.
This fall the museum is enhanced by a temporary exhibit on China export artwork from the 18th and 19th century. This covers Chinese porcelain, lacquer work, ivory, silver, etc. made specifically for the export trade during this period. This exhibit is right next to the navigation hall mentioned above and complements it very nicely.
A 4D movie theater and planetarium are also available (although we didn't have time to partake of either of them) as is a small cafe and a couple of gift shops. Unfortunately, the latter is mainly stocked with trinkets with few books (even in Chinese) available to complement the museum's exhibits (e.g., we saw a catalog of the temporary export exhibit displayed at the end of the gallery, but sadly it does not appear to be for sale in either of the gift shops - unfortunately the staff's command of English and our poor command of Chinese prevented us from figuring out how and where a copy could be obtained).
Overall, you can spend an enjoyable couple of hours looking through the museum's collection.
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.