Historic Dockyard Museum
The Historic Dockyard Museum in Stanley contains many exhibits of social and maritime interest as well as displays of natural history and links with the Antarctic. Temporary exhibitions celebrate anniversaries and events happening in the Islands. The museum is a must-see for all visitors, providing an insight into Falklands’ life, past and present.
Traditional Falklands' life and history
The special lifestyle of the Islands is celebrated through farming tools, children’s bone toys, fretwork, a recreated kitchen with a peat stove, cutlery and crockery including Goss China, various musical items of which the most impressive is a grand mechanical “jukebox” from the late 1800s and much, much more.
Maritime exhibits include models, figureheads, artefacts and relics from sailing vessels. Read quirky stories of mariners and their exploits in the Islands’ waters. Learn also about the modern day fishing industry, the main contributor to the Falklands’ economy.
The world’s oldest remains of the Warrah, a fox-like animal which once inhabited the Islands, form part of the natural history display which includes fascinating skulls and bones from marine mammals. Many of the Falklands’ familiar species are brought to life by taxidermy; an amazingly realistic exhibition of wildlife is set against a backdrop of a recreated seashore. Explore the geological past through rocks, fossils and timelines.
Many visitors want to learn more about the impact of the 1982 war on Islanders and their lifestyles. Listen to audio recordings which tell stories from the perspective of children of those difficult days.
The Falklands are a gateway to Antarctica. The Reclus Hut, a genuine Antarctic refuge, takes you back to the 1950s and to the heart of the explorers’ harsh living conditions as you experience the sounds of the winds and really feel the isolation of the deep south.
The newly opened Dockyard complex is made up of a number of buildings, each with an historical significance. The main museum is housed in an old “storehouse”. The smithy, boathouse and gaol are part of the legacy of the area whilst the R/T station & telephone exchange was moved here from a previous site. These smaller buildings provide additional areas to explore. Look at tools used by blacksmiths, cobblers, carpenters, farmworkers and horsemen. Discover the history of radio and telecommunications to the present day. See early printing equipment used for everything from newspapers and wedding invitations to proclamations of war.
A visit to Cartmell Cottage can also be included as part of your museum entry. This is one of the oldest houses in Stanley and Falklands’ lifestyles of the 1850s, 1940s and 1970s have been carefully recreated.
With so much to take in, set aside at least half a day to make the most of this great attraction.
To find out museum opening times and other practicalities, click here.